Displaying items by tag: marketing strategy - Page 6
Just 2 years ago, who would have thought Instagram would take over the world of social media? That LinkedIn would become the most power recruitment platform taking significant marketshare from Seek, Monster and Indeed?
A reluctance to too much risk in the business is something that has held me back time and time again - and with good reason. I want to scream from the rooftops that I am ready and prepared to take risks to achieve my ultimate goals, but I know that it is fortuitous that I hold back and think through things a bit more deeply.
Finding inspiration is also a challenge. The first few blogs may seem easy, but what happens when it feels like you have covered every topic? How do you take a fresh approach and avoid the ‘white page syndrome’ – staring blankly at a page for hours on end, creating further pressure to perform.
If you want to make the most of your blogging, come up with regular ideas and get the best out of your content strategy, read on.
They are not just revamping what exists already, but revolutionizing the way in which technology is used and powered to bring change. There isn't a developer here that hasn't caught on to something big, but perhaps, for some it won't happen because they are bringing the wrong product out at the wrong time, or they simply do not know how to market it.
December is upon us and in the marketing world, its a big month for writing marketing strategies for 2014. As we conduct one workshop after another, it amazes me at how out-of-touch people really are through no fault of their own.
At Marketing Eye, we work tirelessly on keeping our top marketers up-to-date with the latest in marketing, yet they still stay behind because there is always someone out there bringing out a new solution or new way in which to market, that may catch on and be the next big thing.
Marketing automation has been around for a few years, but it is not done and dusted. Instead, marketing automation is evolving and transforming the way in which we conduct marketing and process our prospects and clients into a more advanced customer relationship program. What is missing though is the biggest influencer in marketing today - and that's social media.
Humbled by an employee discussion in our US office, I was pleasantly surprised that given the hypothetical situation of winning the lotto, all employees said that after a brief holiday, they would want to come back to work at Marketing Eye.
As an international business owner, I have come to the realisation that my company culture is different in each country in which we have offices. The engagement level on a day-to-day basis in our Atlanta office is very high – not to say, other offices are not the same. Company culture is everything and there are many reasons why it has a direct impact on bottom line.
There are a number of lessons learnt from having a start-up in Atlanta that is inherently different from other offices we have.
The first being that all employees have chosen each other
Usually, a senior manager or myself makes the ultimate choice on who is going to join the team and in what capacity. Instead, in Atlanta, I have been over-ruled twice, and both times, I had to put my hand up and say that my choice would have been wrong for the team.
Simply by getting 8 hours sleep (a blessing!), having a dynamic new recruit from Atlanta in the Melbourne office, seeing the team excited about life and their work and watching everyone and everything grow in so many ways - I had an a-ha moment (think Oprah).
It was almost like an outer-body experience. Here I was, looking from the outside in and all I saw was highly motivated, excited people that were all ready to tackle the world head-on and believed so strongly in what they were doing and how they were doing it - that they sent some type of magical energy to every person they came into contact with - including me!
Most marketing strategies will be firmly in place for next year, but for those who have left it too late, there are a few things that you need to consider.
- If you look back at 2012, you will realise how much things have changed.
- Facebook listed and fell flat on its face, but woke up with more than 1 billion registered users.
- Pinterest came to the forefront and became the fastest growing social media platform on the planet.
- Instagram bagged a billion bucks with only enough employees to count on your two hands.
- People like www.jeffbullas.com out of downtown Sydney became a global social media phenomenum just by writing blogs that are interesting and knowing the rules of engagement for content creation and exploitation.
- No-one in the world sees their website as a brochure anymore (although many still haven't done anything about it)
- Google is going from strength to strength
- Linkedin company pages are essential to any companies "winning" strategy
- Old-fashion marketing is having a revival of sorts with DM pieces still having impact ONLY when they are super duper creative
- The US is still feeling the pinch and Australia is seen as a sound performer with a strong Aussie dollar and an economy that hasn't yet fallen flat on its face
- A woman is the richest woman in Australia - thanks Gina Rinehardt for flying the flag
- Obama won a second term as President of the United States of America
- 12 months since Steve Jobs passed away and Apple is going remarkably strong with the launch of a new ipad mini
- Microsoft launches Windows 8
- The prophecy of a major disaster with 'the end of the world' is still growing in momentum
In light of the above, where from here?
Marketing Strategies need to be aligned to a company's overall business plan. It underpins the overall sales plan and creates the forum for which sales can occur.
Businesses that have put on the hand brake because the year has been turbulent from an economic perspective, are being surpassed by their less successful competitors who have invested heavily in marketing and reaping the rewards of a strategic approach to doing the opposite of everyone else.
A clever marketing strategy in 2013 is being revised right now. The reason is simple - so many things have changed and to truly have a marketing plan that is effective, there may need to be some tweaks. Don't be afraid to do this, as one of the big benefits of being a small business is that you have the ability and scope to be flexible.
Take into account;
- Changes in search engine optimisation algorithms
- Pinterest and what role this social media platform plays in your overall marketing strategy
- The rise of Instagram
- Online influencers and how your business is reaching and engaging with them
- Traditional media versus new media
- e-Marketing and its role in driving leads
- Branding and positioning in a new world
- Collaboration with key partners and alliances
- Global expansion in light of economic uncertainty
- Fast growing markets with scalability like China, Turkey and India
- Outsourcing of key roles in marketing, finance, human resources etc
- People in your organisation and what role they play in building your business
- Investment in online marketing
- Your website - if it is dead, bury it. Build a new one that is "today" and not "yesterday.
What will you change in 2013?
During the week, I had a conversation with another provider for one of our clients. They are basically graphic designers who have done the odd website development. From my conversations with them, I am almost certain that the website developer is either a freelancer or a graphic designer who has learned to use Wordpress. There are some things that are really obvious in the work they have just completed.
The website is terrible. It does have pretty pictures, but that it! No real strategy has gone into the websites development. The home page is as long as any scroll you have ever seen - literally, right down to the floor. It is full of blank space and menu buttons that should not be on the home page let alone part of the main section of the website.
They seem to be capable graphic designers althought their understanding of brand is reasonably limited - but that is not the end of the world. A marketer can always fix this problem.
But the website is a deal breaker. Worse than that, they now proclaim to be experts in online "communications" strategies to the point whereby they think that our mutual client should not be engaging in any meaningful social media communications. "No-one is going to buy their services because they are on social media".
Is this company sitting under a rock! I know they are in a regional area of Australia - but seriously, where have they been hiding?
Every marketing strategy needs to first look at who the target audience is and understand what makes them tick and how they can integrate areas of marketing to enhance direct communication in a meaningful way.
In today's environment, no marketing strategy can survive without being fully integrated and no matter what business you have, it needs to be online and visible to your target audience and influencers in some shape or form - otherwise, you won't survive.
When I look at an online strategy, the first thing I do is look at the customer.
Then I take a look at where our clients will find them and how they will find our clients.
From a tactical perspective, many clients want things like 100,000 people clicking onto their site every month or more Twitter followers, more fans on facebook and so on. The reality is that the numbers mean nothing and any marketer knows this.
You can BUY followers on any of these platforms and have 50k people following you on Twitter in a matter of weeks, but none of them are going to buy from you or go to your website and spend time viewing what you have to offer.
They are fake. Not real. Worthless. Cost money with no real return on investment other than some short term ego feeding.
Meaningful engagement with followers, fans and people coming to your website may mean fewer numbers on your marketing strategy, but more sales and bigger profits.
Specific goals for your social media plan need to be actionable, and achievable.
- Creating a buzz around your brand: product or service
- Walk people through what you have to offer, so should they need your product or service, they know where to find it
- Engage your social media followers in meaningful conversations that lead to inquiries, sales, referrals and word of mouth conversation
- Gain market share through providing a better customer experience and interaction via social media networks
- Generate leads
For those who are still not keen on social media in the business to business environment, consider the facts:
- Facebook has more than 955 million users with a majority between 18-25; 60 percent of which are female.
- Twitter has more than 555 million users with a majority between 26-34; 57 percent female. Communicate in real time and get the news faster than any other medium.
- LinkedIn is the number one social media tool for business to business marketing with more than 150 million users. Majority between 26-34, directly followed by 35-44.
Creating meaningful content is key. At Marketing Eye, we find a good mixture of blogs that relate to business, marketing and life, ensure that our followers and fans are engaged and want to communicate with us through our many social media mediums.
Remember: Each business is different. You do not need to be like the business next door to you. You should do what works for you and the people you are engaging with. Don't focus on the numbers. Keep track of how much interaction you are having with people on social media and where they are landing on your website or what type of interaction you are having with them.
I was sitting outdoors at a Japanese restaurant when it happened and at first I thought my friend was moving the table with his legs. When it was clearly not him, we both looked on in amazement.
Then, a Japanese chef came racing out and asked us if we felt the earthquake. We both said yes, and I told her that I thought it was exciting, "My first earthquake".
That went down like a lead balloon. Of course, in Japan, earthquakes are very dangerous and has killed thousands of people - so in rememberence of that, being excited by it, may not be in seen in the best light. I remember when this happened in Japan. It was incredibly sad.
Moving on from that, the earthquake certainly was "trending" on all social media and within minutes there was a picture up on facebook with a table and four chairs. One had fallen over. I then saw that same image posted on at least 100 facebook accounts. The world of viral marketing.
Which leads us back to marketing.
Here are 5 tips on what small businesses can do to improve their marketing efforts in the next 12 months are: