While many internet marketing tactics are fairly obvious — SEO (search engine optimization), SEM (search engine marketing), content marketing, social media, etc. — they are not necessarily right for your business or organization. What tactics to use should be decided by understanding the audience you are trying to reach and where they are online. An internet marketing strategy creates a plan of action based on your business objectives and audience to make the most effective use of your budget and resources. [Read more...]
Your brand never sleeps, especially in the digital world. For you, this translates into always being on and always engaged in your marketing strategy. This doesn’t mean you have to be handcuffed to your desk — there is a plethora of apps and smart devices that can simplify your marketing efforts. Streamline your marketing strategy with these helpful tools to make marketing on-the-go remarkably simple.
The Right Device
The right device, with fast broad-band speed and hefty data package, is crucial to working on the go. While it may be convenient to work straight from your phone, it is easier to work from a tablet with unlimited data. Larger tablet screens give you the same flexibility you get from your standard smartphone, but with the increased screen space for easier viewing and typing. Plus, unlimited data from companies like T-Mobile means you won’t be bound in what you accomplish by an impending giant bill.
Hootsuite’s social media platform can simultaneously schedule posts on all of your social channels, including LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+. Do you manage multiple client accounts? You can manage them all from the same dashboard. As if that simplicity wasn’t enough, Hootsuite also allows you to create client reports detailing the analytics of each social platform’s performance. The app is available via both desktop and mobile apps.
Facebook is one of the most downloaded social media apps of all time. While posts can be managed from Hootsuite, Facebook’s integrated analytics and the ease through which potential clients interact on the site make using its direct interface a no-brainer. The Facebook app will track your page’s analytics on the go and, more importantly, will allow you to interact immediately with perspective customers.
You already use WordPress to manage your content management system, but staying up to date with blogging is a tough task. Download the WordPress mobile app to make blogging easy, anywhere. You can even update your CMS straight from this free app!
With Evernote’s incredible capabilities, it is hard not to make the app synonymous with your life. Evernote is a cross-platform app that offers countless features, from being your digital file cabinet, note-taking tool, daily journal, and task/project management system. It even has “If This Then That” support, meaning you can automatically send content from other services (like Gmail) to your Evernote account. Wherever you are, Evernote allows you to save your ideas, because you never know when your next great idea may strike.
About the Author
Richard Collins – Next-gen advocate, specializing in indie games and all things retro
Here are the top Internet strategy, marketing and technology links for the week of February 10, 2014… [Read more...]
Companies are always looking for competitive advantages — what can make them stand out against their competitors. Using data and analytics to drive customer experience improvements can be a long-haul competitive advantage — increasing conversions and repeat business. While some data analysis can be complex, there are a number of metrics that a business can look at to see basics like where website traffic is coming from and where people get stuck during the conversion/sales process. Econsultancy has a great roundup of why data-driven customer experience is important and what to look for:
Great customer experience is one of the hardest things for your competitors to copy.
A strategy of continuous improvement can offer clear differentiation from competitors.
However, it’s only when we measure what customers are actually seeing and doing when they are interacting with our digital channels, that we can understand where they might have issues or unmet needs.
Rather than theorise about potential problems or rely on closely monitoring small samples of test users, we need to let the data lead us to areas of concern. — Data-driven customer experience is tough to copy by Geoff Galat
The viability of consumer eCommerce is a no-brainer. What’s often forgotten is B2B (business to business) eCommerce, but sites like Amazon.com are starting to fill the gaps left by others. While B2B purchases tend to be much larger than consumer purchases, and the sales cycle is longer, customers still want the convenience of going to a website to make the final sale, purchase supplemental parts/pieces, or be involved in the purchase cycle. eCommerce sites don’t have to disrupt the B2B purchase cycle which is based on relationships and trust — they can be used to automate processes and increase customer satisfaction. W.W. Grainger, which is a supplier of industrial parts and equipment, is an excellent example of B2B eCommerce.
For more on the opportunities of B2B eCommerce, Practical eCommerce has this article:
Many B-to-B companies have long believed that ecommerce would create channel conflicts between sales personnel, suppliers, and other channels. But in reality, B-to-B sales channels are already disrupted by ecommerce. Manufacturers are selling directly to consumers. Manufacturers and distributors are selling products on AmazonSupply.com, Alibaba.com, and other portals to other businesses. Wholesalers are consolidating rapidly because they are caught in the channel chaos. – B-to-B Ecommerce: Big Opportunity, with Obstacles by Dale Traxler
A thriving business requires high-quality, in-demand products. It cannot survive, let alone thrive, on high-quality alone. The in-demand part is every bit as essential and often proves the more difficult part of the equation. What takes a product from useful or nice-to-have to necessity? That’s the question some of the most successful companies in the world have been able to answer in their own distinctive ways to create brands that are recognized everywhere and that millions of the people across the globe feel compelled to own.
When you are looking for inspiration to take your business advertising to the next level, look to these kings of advertising to see how they have mastered the art.
Guru 1: Apple
“People don’t know what they want until you show it to them,” stated Steve Jobs in a 1998 BusinessWeek article. While Jobs was talking about whether consumer research had a hand in product creation, the same could be said of Apple’s very successful “Get a Mac” advertising campaign.
At the time the campaign began, Apple was still soaking up the success of the iPod, originally released in 2001, but it had yet to release the iPhone, the iPad or make a big dent in Microsoft’s lock on the personal computer industry.
That’s when Apple’s marketing department decided to show consumers why they wanted a Mac computer instead of a PC, creating a total of 66 ads for TV that showcased different aspects of what, in their opinion, made Macs better for consumers.
Lesson 1: Focus on each aspect of a product individually so consumers can see what they are missing by choosing another product.
Guru 2: GE
GE is the world’s most profitable appliance company, according to Forbes, but it didn’t get to the top by chance. GE began advertising early, and it advertised in a concise, logical way. As a company with many diverse products, it knew it had to market its products individually, which led to separate advertisements for medical supplies, home electronics and automotive products.
Lesson 2: Don’t waste money on advertising your company as all encompassing. Market individual products specifically to the groups most likely to buy them.
Guru 3: De Beers
One of the most controversial advertising success stories of all time belongs to the world’s top diamond company. Despite detractors, though, there is no denying that the De Beers advertising strategy led the company to where it sits high atop its competition today.
The original intent of the De Beers ad campaign was to make diamonds more important to the average working family. So began the challenge of making a diamond an absolute necessity in every woman’s life.
Steeped in sentimentality, the De Beers advertisements convinced readers that a diamond was proof of love and that “A Diamond Is Forever.”
Lesson 3: Appeal to people’s emotions. Make them laugh. Make them cry. Make them feel something, and they are more likely to take a second look at your product.
Business doesn’t have to be big to be successful, but more business and more profits are things many business owners strive toward. With the availability of cloud storage plans that make backups automatic and the ease of sending out Quickbooks invoices from either the Intuit desktop application or QuickBooks Online, more emphasis can be put on business growth over day-to-day tasks.
While your company might be able to survive on a small scale without an extensive advertising campaign, it won’t grow into Apple by itself. You don’t have to have a multi-million dollar advertising budget to incorporate lessons from successful international companies. You simply have to do things on a smaller scale.
Internet video sites, and the potential for videos to go viral, have eliminated the need to pay for advertising space on television like Apple did for their “Get a Mac” campaign.” You need only to pay to create the video.
Since advertising costs in publications and on websites are generally based on readership numbers, advertising in a niche publication is generally cheaper than advertising in a general interest publication, making GE’s brand of advertising cost effective.
“A Diamond Is Forever” is a four-word slogan that has not changed since 1948, and it all started with a copy editor with an idea.
About the Author
Stacy Logan - is an advertising consultant for a Fortune 500 company. She loves her job and her pet lizard, Ralph.
Here are the top Internet strategy, marketing and technology links for the week of January 20th, 2014… [Read more...]