Happy New Year…marketing resolutions
We are a couple of weeks into the New Year but nothing is stopping you from creating some professional goals that could help your business and personal life. Time to start planning, creating and learning with eighty3 creative. Here are four examples to get the creative juices flowing and help you plan for the year ahead.
Automation, Automation, Automation
Ever had one of those days? Wall-to-wall meetings with no time to think and a huge to-do list full of marketing tasks that’s getting longer by the minute. Well, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to sit back and relax at the end of the day, knowing that your marketing has already been done for you?
Marketing automation refers to software solutions that are designed to help you complete these tasks in a more efficient and streamlined manner. The immediate goal with your marketing is to increase revenue for your company and conversions are happening faster than ever. It comes down to who can liaise with a prospect first, who engages with customers more often and who converts leads faster.
The solution is marketing automation, and the stats speak for themselves:
- A reported 49% of companies are using automation in their marketing strategies, and for B2B companies, this figure rises to 55%
- 80% of businesses using automation have seen an upsurge in leads
- SMEs using automation gain 50% of their revenue from existing customers
Most business owners appreciate the advantages of marketing automation, but often don’t know where to start. Here are three strategies that you can implement today.
Many email marketing services provide automation options such as sending a thank you email when a user signs up to your database, or a bespoke offer code on the user’s birthday. But the key to a successful email marketing campaign is the quality of your data – segment your data into relevant categories and target these people with relevant content.
Social Media Automation:
There is an abundance of software and tools out there that makes it easy for you to engage with your audience. A monthly or even quarterly content plan will allow you to plan and schedule updates across multiple social media channels, ensuring that you are regularly touching base with your audience.
Much like social media marketing, your quarterly content plan comes into play once again here. You should plan, write and schedule blogs in advance to ensure a consistent flow of content at busy times of year. For instance, if you’re sending out a press release to announce an upcoming event, why not write a couple of preview blogs at the same time that can be published in the weeks prior to the event?
Get to Know Your Audience
You know more about your business than anyone else. That’s a given. But how much do you really know about your target audience? More often than not business owners are focused on the big picture and consider everyone and anyone a potential customer. However, this approach leads to marketers trying a whole heap of different strategies to reach that audience, most of which can lead to disastrous consequences.
These days, businesses face increasing competition for eyeballs with a seemingly endless amount of content being shared online, including:
- 3 million pieces of content shared on Facebook each minute;
- 500 million tweets sent per day on Twitter;
- 300 hours of video clips uploaded every minute on YouTube;
- 95 million videos and photos posted every day on Instagram; and
- Nearly 70 million blogs posts published through WordPress alone each month.
How do you keep up and remain in front of your competition? By investing more time in audience insights and trying to really understand your audience. An easy place to start is Facebook Insights, here you can learn more about the demographical and behavioural data of both your audience and that of your competitors.
This data should then be used to leverage your content strategy to both your existing and potential audience. That will not only improve your marketing from a targeting point of view, but you can also reduce wasted advertising spend.
The Here and Now
Short-lived content is set to explode in 2017 with the introduction of Instagram Stories and Facebook Live. Instagram Stories allows users to create a series of videos and images that disappear after 24 hours whereas Facebook Live allows users to broadcast live video around the world at a click of a button. Plus both audiences are massive:
Over 500 million active users
Used by approximately 300 million people every day
5 billion likes every day
79 billion active users
Used by 1.18 billion people every day
5 billion likes generated daily
These two platforms lend themselves naturally to the creation of authentic, spontaneous content that is making users feel even more in sync with their favourite brands. But before you start uploading videos of your friend’s dog skateboarding, in the hope that it will attract a few laughs, have a think about the type of ‘in the moment’ content your business can produce.
Some ideas might include short workshops, event broadcasts, webinars, Q&A sessions and behind-the-scenes access. You should share fresh content that doesn’t feel contrived or overly edited — it should reflect the human qualities of your business in a way that feels natural.
Come on, we are web designers. We couldn’t give you some advice without talking about our bread and butter now, could we? Web designers and developers across the world have started to adopt mobile-first design when it comes to building websites. Although this isn’t a particularly new method, more and more businesses are realising the importance of delivering an effective mobile experience for customers.
The reasons for this are as follows:
- 80% of internet users own smartphones
- Mobile devices now account for 65% of internet usage worldwide
- 46% of users say that they won’t return to a website if it doesn’t load properly on a mobile device
- Nearly 60% of Google searches come from mobile devices
- Previously the trend was to build a website for big screens and then working down to smaller screens. However this has now reversed, hence the name mobile-first.
- Although not all of these trends may be relevant to you and your business, it’s always useful to know what’s happening in the industry and to see where you’re able to improve in order to save time and improve your marketing.