Marketing in 2019

Marketing in 2019

Seth Godin, American author and former dot com business executive, and writer of This is Marketing: You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn To See, was interviewed by  Jason Feifer to help further explain his thoughts on new tactics for 2019.

First and foremost, Godin “urges companies to be relevant, not loud.”

 

So we all want to know the big question, “How will marketing continue to change in 2019?”

Attention and trust are the two most valuable elements of our economy going forward, and big companies have a long history of just burning it, wasting it. The alternative is to be the kind of organization that markets with people instead of at them.

 

What does this mean exactly?

The mindset of pop-unders, pop-overs, spam, interruption, demographics, targeting — these are all hunting tactics. Like, We have something we want to sell, and gosh darn it, we’re going to find someone to sell it to.

Godin says what we;re currently seeing over and over again is, “that the organizations that are succeeding don’t do that. They’re the ones that would be missed if they were gone. When you act in a way that helps the person achieve their dreams and goals and desires, then you don’t have to bully your way in and elbow your way in. We’re entering this age where everyone knows there’s no privacy left, everyone knows there’s no data security, everyone knows you can’t trust anyone. But when someone we can trust shows up, people go, “‘Oh, that person’s different. They’re one of us.’”

A good way to offset this is to go back to the basics.

Yeah; the basics of a century ago. And the reason this is hard is not that it’s hard. The reason it’s hard is that it’s scary. The tools of industrial marketing let the big companies off the hook. You just write a check and it’s not your fault anymore. But if you’re going to make it human, it means you’re going to put yourself out there and say, “I made this,” and someone is going to see it and say, “I don’t want it.” And it’s easy to hear that and say, “You don’t want me. I failed.” But that’s not the right answer. The right answer is “Oh, I didn’t make this for you. I made it for someone like you who believes something different, who wants something different. Let me go find that person.”

Guide to Affiliate Marketing for a Novice

Guide to Affiliate Marketing for a Novice

Affiliate Marketing is exactly what you think it is.

On one end of the marketing arrangement, an online retailer pays commission to an external website for traffic or sales generated from its referrals. On the other end,  this is the process of earning a commission by promoting someone else product or service. By using an affiliate link, a specific URL that contains the affiliate’s ID or username. In affiliate programs, advertisers use affiliate links to record the traffic that is sent to the advertiser’s website. This action is all part of an affiliate program.

 

This can be done through popular blogging networks, Instagram influencers,  or any way you can send an affiliate link. Think- podcaster leaving a link or telling you to use certain code at checkout for a discount. Or your favorite youtube letting you to “swipe up” to see where they got their new “favorite” product.

 

For a real-life example check out your favorite movie information center, Jamie Spencer, IMDB.com

The huge online movie database IMDb.com, has information on thousands of films, actors, and producers. So there is a great opportunity to link out to merchants who can sell the items that are being researched on the site–specifically DVDs or streaming video. On each movie page within the site, the right sidebar includes a link out to Amazon. This is done in an automated way as the link takes referrals to a search page within Amazon displaying results for the movie title or Actor.

Now to get started you will need to follow these 3 tips:

Vet All Affiliate Programs-

There are so many programs out there that will do most of the grunt work for you. But make sure you aren’t throwing your money around.

 

Find your Target Audience-

Marketers design strategies to meet the needs of the target market and use media channels and other touch points to best reach the purchaser.

 

SEO is the Key-

While affiliate links will pusher consumers and buyers to you, you can still generate traffic organically. So be sure to fill your site with valuable and engaging content!

Balancing Work/Life Over the Holidays

Balancing Work/Life Over the Holidays

Joining the workforce means we no longer get a 2-4 week break for the holidays. For some, it’s hard not to be jealous of teachers and their much deserved time off. For others, the idea of a three-day holiday can seem overwhelming or cause them to stress out more.  With so many of us torn between juggling heavy workloads, managing relationships and family responsibilities, and squeezing in outside interests, it’s no surprise that more than one in four Americans describe themselves as “super stressed”.

To help you manage work away from the office we have a few tips to get you through:

Plan Ahead. Of course, effective prior planning can really help to remove some stress from your plate. And, the more tasks and duties you can get accomplished now, the less you’ll need to worry about when the holiday season is actually here. Let people know ahead of time when you plan on being out of the office.

It’s common practice to prepare an email autoresponder for when you are going to be away from work for a lengthy period of time. But in many cases that isn’t enough to give you – and those who may be wanting to reach you – peace of mind while you are gone.

If possible, schedule everything out. There are so many great programs and applications that can assist you. Need to get a post out next Tuesday at noon? Buffer or Hootsuite can help you plan months in advance.

Working 9 to 5 just isn’t what it used to be. While this rang true 30 years ago, there are not many people who work a 9 to 5 job any longer.  These jobs now bleed over into our personal lives. It’s important to remember, especially this time of the year, saying “no”, is okay. Make extra time for your family. Responding to a few emails in the morning is permitted, but anything beyond can and will have to wait.

Tailoring your Social Marketing for the Holiday Season

Tailoring your Social Marketing for the Holiday Season

Calling all digit marketers, social media managers and advertising strategists. The Holiday season is in full swing- and a recent Adroll study showed 40% of U.S. consumers begin holiday shopping in October—yet the average social cost per click is 12% lower in November and December. With social media playing an increasingly important role for retail brands, it’s time to start preparing your holiday marketing strategies if you have not already!

 

1. Get in the Holiday Spirit-

Change Social Media headers to include a festive feel. It’s good to remember not everyone celebrates the same holidays try to include them all or remember there are still secular ways to celebrate the season, take “Winter Wonderland” for example.

2. Don’t Drive Sales-

Focus on brand awareness, not sales messaging, when leveraging holidays or national observances. These days and months are opportunities to relate your company to trending topics and common events. Of course, Holiday-related sales are okay to promote, but try to broaden your message for the time of year.

3. Customizable buttons-

Customize labels depending on your website, you might want to consider changing up some of the labels to match the season. If you run an online store, you might want to replace “Buy Now” with a “Gift” or use “Santa’s List” for the wish list or your most popular products. Santa’s List even works for replacing the normal wording on your most popular posts. Many websites have fun with the theme and change their contact label into “Contact the Elves” or “Send a Message to Santa”. Get creative and use your imagination but do make sure it’s still clear what each particular label means.

4. Use festive hashtags-

Using popular festive related hashtags, or creating your own, can help get your content in front of shoppers that use Twitter or Instagram. Popular hashtags for Christmas include #wishlist #Christmas #christmasshopping especially in conjunction with the year eg. #wishlist2018

5. Festive landing pages-

If you are promoting special offers, gift ideas, wishlists or hampers on social media, it’s a good idea to direct your traffic to dedicated landing pages for customer segments.

You should customize the page to what you know about your customer, focusing on their needs and wants. Use targeted imagery and copy to help boost conversion rates. Dedicated landing pages also give you an opportunity to re-target visitors via social media or online ads.

Social Media Trends of 2018

Social Media Trends of 2018

Statista found that there were  2.46 billion social media users in 2017, and this number is growing. According to estimates, the number of worldwide social media users reached 2.34 billion and is expected to grow to some 2.95 billion by 2020. It is no surprise that social media is a powerful tool and can affect business and evoke change. Before the 2018 year comes to a close, we decided to look at the trends that the year brought us. The good, the bad and the ugly. In 2018 we saw many social media trends. Wondering if you missed out, or hopped on too many bandwagons? Chances are it isn’t too late to get started on some before the year is over.

 

Influencer Marketing-

With social media, anyone has the chance to be famous. However annoying you may find it, brands and companies are cashing in, and so are the influencers. Reality stars can now extend that 15 minutes of fame and earn a living at the same time. In an article titled “After the Final Rose… You Make Money on Instagram” explains how long you last on the show can affect your potential earnings. While these celebs might cost you a pretty penny, micro-influencers are sometimes known for a more devout following. What exactly is a micro influencer? They are people on social media channels who have a strong following but don’t have a celebrity status. While there is no exact threshold, micro influencers typically have anywhere between 1,000 and 90,000 followers.

 

Instagram Story Highlights-

While they were released in 2017, this feature did not take off until 2018. This tool allowed you to create permanent collections of Instagram Stories that will live on your new Instagram profile. These stories can be carefully created and brands are loving them. They are great for business profiles because story highlights allow brands to easily curate and showcase the content they want users to see first. We already know that Instagram is the highlight reel, but now it really can be an intro to what your feed has to offer.  They’re a creative way to express yourself, show off products, showcase events, and customers, drive traffic, or brand your business!

 

Face Filters-

Snapchat pioneered face filters in 2016, and Instagram was quick to follow. What first started out as fun interactive edits to photos quickly became yet another marketing tool. In October of 2016,  Twentieth Century Fox became the first marketer to buy the app’s sponsored lens format to promote The Peanuts Movie.  The Gatorade Super Bowl Lens and Taco Bell’s Taco Shell Lens were the most popular filters to date. Many companies have found a way around these pricey filters by making sure there is a Geo-Tag that will appear a certain radius from their locations.

 

Messaging Platforms-

The popularity of messaging platforms is exploding. WhatsApp (1.3 billion monthly active users), WeChat (963 million MAUs), and Facebook Messenger (1.2 billion MAUs) are leading the charge. On average, 77% of users keep messaging notifications turned on so they never miss a thing. FOMO is a powerful motivator” Says Neil Patel, co-founder of Neil Patel Digital. Patel also says that messaging allows you to reach your audience at scale and on their preferred channel. 89% of consumers would like to use it to communicate with businesses, yet only 48% of businesses do so.

 

Live Video-

On Instagram, Facebook and Periscope we have the ability to go live and communicate with your viewers in real time. This feature has continued to grow and if done well, can have tremendous results. Consumers love it.  Research shows that 80% of audiences prefer watching live video from brands as opposed to reading a blog. And 82% of consumers say they would rather watch live videos than read social media posts.

 

Are Hashtags Dead?

Are Hashtags Dead?

 

Hashtags. When they first came out people were confused why the pound sign was entering their social channels. In technical terms a “hashtag”  is a type of metadata tag used on social networks such as Twitter and other microblogging services, allowing users to apply dynamic, user-generated tagging which makes it possible for others to easily find messages with a specific theme or content. Some people aren’t a huge fan and even find them annoying.  But did you know that posts with at least one Instagram hashtag average 12.6% more engagement than posts without a hashtag?

 

Hashtags first got their start on Twitter. Twitter, of course, was around 4 years before Instagram. On Twitter, they were used to track trending topics and follow along with popular conversation. We have seen a decline of hashtag use on Twitter, but they have become even more vital on Instagram for bloggers, influencers, and brands. Before you slap any hashtag onto the end of your caption- know the rules:

 

  • Keep them Focused and Relevant

Ask yourself, “What are we posting about and why”-this is a great way to help get you started. Instagram recently rolled out the ability to follow hashtags which means that instead of a user having to search for an Instagram hashtag and scroll through an endless feed, your posts could now show up automatically in the feeds of potential new followers.

 

  • Location, Location, Location

Placement matters with hashtags. First, be sure to post them after your body copy. It’s also a good idea to create some space between caption. A common practice is the three dots method (shown below)

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This creates some separation to know when the caption ends and your tags begin.  Second, the order in which you place your hashtags makes a world of difference. Once you have a good amount of hashtags that you have decided on. You’ll now want to strategically choose which hashtags you want to list first. Most users aren’t likely to read through all of your hashtags, whether you’re choosing only 8 or to go for all 30. If there are hashtags that you want others to read make sure that you list them first.

 

  • Don’t Limit Yourself

Hashtags should be included but not limited to captions. They can be included in bios and when a user taps it they will be taken to that hashtag’s page to follow it, according to Hootsuite. For businesses with popular branded hashtags (more on that later), it’s a great way to foster engagement or collect user-generated content. They can also be used in comments and stories. Use the hashtag sticker to include branded hashtags in your Stories.

 

  • Do your Homework

You might have the perfect hashtag- it will reach your target audience and promotes your brand -but if it’s one of the most popular hashtags, chances are it will be lost on the shuffle. But don’t swear off popular hashtags entirely, Hootsuite says, “As long as they’re relevant to the post and used sparingly, popular hashtags can help expand your reach without making you seem desperate or spammy.”

 

  • Find it and Never Let it Go

While it’s important to switch up a few hashtags and keep them related to your posts, pick one or two hashtags that fit your brand and use them in every post. This way people can always know how to find you and even follow that specific tag. Taglines and slogans are great hashtags to use continuously.

 

  • Don’t Overdo it

Users tend to view paragraphs of hashtags as an eyesore. Most top brands 91% of them, to be exact, use seven or fewer hashtags per post. It’s easy to assume that’s the magic number for everyone, right? Krystal Gillespie, HubSpot’s Social Media Community Manager said that this isn’t always the case: Some accounts are more successful with hashtags ranging from the low teens 20s, and up to 30. A good rule of thumb is to keep the range from 7-30.

 

 

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