Friday Five Roundup: From Digital Marketing Trends to Cures for Marketing Needs



5 Digital Marketing Trends That Will Disrupt Your Business

Businesses must have advanced, nuanced marketing efforts or the game is lost to others who do use these tactics. Marketing strategies such as social media outreach, search engine marketing, and web site pop-ups are yesterday's trends. Every business does those now. Here's the next frontier:
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Marketing Land

Cloverleaf's New Grocery Shelf Displays Watch Shoppers, Track Their Emotions

The vision of responsive groceries got closer to reality this week, when retail tech company Cloverleaf announced what it describes as the first digital shelf display with built-in detection of customers' emotional states and demographics. The system will be presented for the first time at the big National Retail Federation show, starting this weekend in New York City.
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The Secret behind Generating More Traffic for Your Business

As you market campaigns through social media platforms, do you ever wonder why your posts don't generate as much traffic for your business? While this method may promote your business well, Ryan Bonnici discusses how optimizing metrics from a different approach will lead to a more successful business.
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MarTech Advisor

Top Cures for Your Marketing Needs

In order to increase engagement with your customers, you must effectively reach your target audience. Shashi Upadhyay outlines three solutions to help companies execute their marketing plans and reach their goals.
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How to Make Your Content Marketing Impossible for Competitors to Copy

The more advancements in digital marketing we make and the more information on how to spy on competitors we share, the more those things are being adopted in various industries around the world.
That means you're more likely to be the target of a spying competitor. It's all fun and games until they start using the same tactics to replicate the work you've been doing. Here are a few ways to make your content marketing impossible to copy.
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How to Craft an Effective CTA

By: Mahnoor Awan

What is a Call to Action (CTA)?

A Call to Action (CTA) is a button or other link, usually found on a website landing page, or shown prominently in an e-blast. It is responsible for goal conversions. Goal conversion is a measurement of some action, an individual has done interacting with your site or e-blast.
Some examples of goal conversions include:
  • Subscribing to your newsletter
  • Downloading something you have to offer through your website
  • Making a purchase
  • Clicking to social accounts
  • Watching a video
Your web visitors have to click the CTA button for the goal conversion. Common examples of CTA buttons include:
  • Download
  • Subscribe
  • Add to cart
  • Take the free trial

Examples of social media CTA's.

If your website doesn’t have Call to Action buttons, or you feel they you are not achieving your goal conversions, here are a few tips for an effective CTA button.

  • The Look
  • The shape and the colors of a CTA button are very important. They have to attract your visitors to click on them. They should be different than the rest of your landing page, and have to stand out. Make sure their shape signifies a button, usually a rectangle, oval, or an arrow works well. You could also have a 3D effect to make them look different and stand out from the rest of the page. They should be big and visible on a landing page or e-blast, so visitors’ eyes are first directed to them.
    The colors should be in contrast with your landing page for the button to be distinctive. Common colors used are oranges, greens, or blues because they don’t look too jarring on the page, and yet attract attention. Try avoiding a grey color for your CTA's because that makes them look disabled. If you do use grey on the website, consider having a different ‘hover’ color to confirm the visitor that these buttons are clickable when they pass over it with their mouse.

  • Wording
  • The wording of your CTA buttons is also really important because this is what will urge your web visitors to click on the buttons. Your wording should be compelling but not too pushy. Write in the first person so it feels that you are directly conversing with the customer.

    Regular CTA vs. First Person CTA

    Try using action packed text, in line with your branding strategies that motivate the visitor to click the button like, ‘Take This Course!’ or ‘Host Your First Webinar!’.
    An example is Man-pack, where you can create your own version of a bag that includes men’s necessities. Their CTA, ‘Get Your Man-PACK On!’ goes perfectly with their branding, which they claim to be masculine and macho. It is action packed that encourages their target audience to proceed with clicking, and it stands out with contrasting colors and bold text.

  • Click Triggers
  • Click Triggers are extra wordings you put around your CTA buttons, that work as boosters to convince more people to click on it.
    A few click triggers commonly used are:
    • Testimonials
    • Tweets
    • Star Ratings
    • Guarantees
    • Value Proposition
    • Adding a sense of urgency
    The click triggers can either work as anxiety reducers or add a key benefit. An example of an anxiety reducer click trigger is Netflix.
    Netflix requires paid subscription on a monthly basis and sometimes, people are worried of cancelling subscriptions or consider it a hassle, in case they don’t like the service. Netflix reduces this anxiety by adding 'CANCEL ANYTIME' right before their CTA.
    Another example is UberEATS. Their key benefit click trigger is ‘Your favorite local restaurants are always a tap away.’ This convenient statement right before their CTA persuades the customers to download their app.

  • CTA Styles
  • The CTA buttons don’t necessarily have to be above the fold of the page, as long as they stand out and are visible to your web visitor, that’s what actually matters.
    Some websites use a pop-up banner to display their CTA options. However, pop-ups are distracting because they interrupt what the visitor is viewing on your website. They will most likely close it immediately, without even glancing at the pop-up, to continue what they were doing.
    Some websites use a mandatory sign-up pop-up window, where the customer has to click the CTA in order to view the page. That is an extreme example, and since visitors are not given a choice, it may lead to a higher bounce rate for the website because they might not want to go through with your CTA.
    A slide-up banner is a better alternative because your visitor can see something pop-up, without interrupting their flow. And if something catches their attention, they may go through with your CTA, once they are done with what they were doing on your website.
    CTA’s can also be on the sidebar, other than on your landing page. If you have a blog page for example, you can have ‘connect with your social media accounts’ CTA’s on the sidebar.
    Above is an example of a Huffington Post blog page. As a reader scrolls down the blog, the CTA to connect with their social media keeps moving down with them. This approach may seem obtrusive to some people, but it gets the job done by keeping the CTA’s fresh in your visitors’ minds.
Call To Actions help with generating the end goals of your website. They are like a final instruction to your reader, something that you would want them to do on your website. Using these few tips to make your CTA buttons more attractive may help you with generating the results. For similar tips and tricks, click here to read our weekly blogs.

Friday Five Roundup: From Customer Experience, to Digital Marketing Stats & Super Bowl



The Year of Customer Experience: How Ecommerce Brands Can Prepare

According to Gartner data, 42% of CEOs say that better CX was “the key change that has driven more wins.” Here are a few ways your company can improve your online experience for customers.
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Marketing Profs.

The Content Marketer's Approach to Successful Social Selling and Sales Enablement

Push marketing. Pull marketing. Content marketing. Social selling. Sales enablement. All are in the playbook that Marketing and Sales use to grow the business via digital channels. Here's what content marketers need to know about their role.
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10 of the best digital marketing stats we’ve seen this week

Interesting stats from the week, including 92% of online consumers claiming they don’t intend to make purchases during the first web visit.
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Marketing Week

The year ahead in marketing and digital: Part 2 – marketing trends

Start off 2017 with a head start with these trends in digital marketing, from data ops to the democratization of AI.
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Huffington Post

The Importance of the Super Bowl’s Digital Marketing Sidecar

It’s not enough to spend big money on commercials at the Super Bowl; to maximize the digital footprint of Super Bowl advertising campaigns you need to take advantage of the huge amount of online activity generated by the biggest American sporting event of the year, brands need to understand how to leverage multiple digital marketing channels to ensure visibility throughout a short window of audience interest, via social media, organic search, paid search, and display advertising.
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How to Create a Brand Ambassador Program

By: Mahnoor Awan

Who is a Brand Ambassador?

Brand Ambassadors can be celebrities, social media influencers, or brand enthusiasts, who are hired to represent a brand in a positive light in public.

However, quite often, brand ambassadors are customers from your target demographic, who voluntarily promote your brand by publicly speaking, blogging, tweeting, and/or instagramming about how much they love your product or service. These customers are an expression of the character of your brand, as they embody the same beliefs and values as your brand. Their job is to stay in regular contact with your customers, promoting the brand to them, and providing you with invaluable feedback on what your customers think about your brand.

If you’ve been thinking about starting up a brand ambassador program for your company, here are some tips that might help you.

  1. Define your goals
  2. Before choosing a brand ambassador, it is important to define the goals of your brand ambassador program.

    • What is it that you are looking forward to achieve with this program?
    • How could a brand ambassador affect not only your brand, but also be a positive influence for/on your customers?
    • Are these goals in terms of increase in awareness of your brand and/or an increase in an overall revenue for your company?
    • How much are you willing to spend on this program in terms of marketing it and/or giving out rewards, which is discussed later in this article.

    Outlining some of these goals and others will often help you determine the strategies for your program.

    When defining your goals, have reasonable expectations. Your revenue or engagement on social media platforms will not go up overnight.

  3. Build a Lifestyle around your brand
  4. When creating a brand ambassador program, it is important to realize that your brand is not just a product or service. Most programs seek to associate a lifestyle around it. An image that a fan-base or a social audience would latch onto and in turn incorporate the brand into their lives because it projects a lifestyle they seek. Your fans want to feel they are a part of the brand’s mission, the bigger picture that your company offers about how your brand impacts your customers’ lives in a positive way.

    For example, Lululemon is not just a company that sells yoga mats and athletic wear. It promotes a healthy, energetic, and fit lifestyle. Its brand ambassadors are yoga teachers who teach free yoga classes in local Lululemon stores. In return, they receive free merchandise, acknowledgement and free promotion in the form of a big picture in the local Lululemon stores, and employees referring the customers to the ambassador’s free classes.

  5. Choose and Invite
  6. Since brand ambassadors are a company’s loyal customers, it is important to make sure that whoever you choose as a brand ambassador, is a customer who is already a fan of the business. You can choose from customers who have already said a good thing or two about the brand themselves, without expecting any reward in return, only because they really like or appreciate your brand. These are the customers who will be willing to promote your brand.

    Preferably, these customers should be of the same demographic as your target market because it is easier for other customers to relate to their content. Try choosing someone who is socially active and embodies the same values and visions as your brand.

    Once you’ve chosen who you want as your brand’s ambassador, it is now time to reach out to them. When reaching out, it is important to be really clear and specific about what the customer’s participation as a brand ambassador would entail and what benefits are they likely to receive.

    Here’s an example from GramforaCause. They have clearly outlined what the brand ambassadors are responsible for, and what they will get in return.

  7. Give Brand Ambassadors the Spotlight
  8. Once you’ve selected a brand ambassador, you can start out by giving them ideas and information on how to feature your brand. But eventually, you’ll just have to release the reins and let the magic happen. If your brand ambassador is already popular on social media, then it is likely, they know what they are doing. So, don’t hover over their every move and let them do their thing.

    However, based on your goals, make sure you determine the right frequency of your brand promotion through your ambassadors, in order to avoid brand fatigue.

  9. Provide Rewards
  10. Since brand ambassadors work voluntarily, it is a good idea to offer them rewards for all their hard work. This reward can be in terms of your free products or service use. It can also be compensation for for your products or services or something exclusive that gives them a VIP feel.

    For example Microsoft’s MVP - Most Valuable Professionals. These are customers who share their expertise with other Microsoft customers, especially in terms of helping with technical issues. The MVP’s are rewarded by a weeklong trip to Microsoft headquarters that involves networking, celebration, recognizing their efforts and much more.

    When delivering the rewards, try to make it as personal as possible, with a genuine thank you note for helping to promote your brand.

  11. Evaluating Your Program
  12. Did your brand ambassador program help you achieve your goals? There are a few ways you can measure if your program positively affected your company:

    • Increase in revenue
    • Increase in likes on your social media platforms
    • Increase in followers on your social media platforms
    • Increase in traffic to your website
    • Increase in engagements on your social media platforms
    • Trending on social media platforms

A brand ambassador program is a great marketing and promotion strategy for a brand. It gets the mission and the value of your brand across through people who are genuine users of your brand. This adds to the authenticity of what your brand has to offer. Following these simple, basic steps might help you jumpstart a great brand ambassador program.

If you are looking for more marketing tips, click here to read our weekly blogs.

Friday Five Roundup: From YouTube, Instagram & Facebook to Tesla's Customer Service & Lily Drone's Cancellation


Quick Sprout

8 Advanced Tips for YouTube Search Optimization

YouTube is one of the most visited websites on the planet, with over 6 billion hours of video streamed monthly from the service. So, how do you make sure your video gets across? Here are 8 ways to optimize your YouTube videos.
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Elon Musk Takes Customer Complaint on Twitter From Idea to Execution in 6 Days

When a Tesla customer complained to Elon Musk via Twitter about SuperCharger access, a resolution was in place within a week. Read the article on >



9 Particularly Interesting Digital marketing Stats From This Week – Social Users Breakdown and Instagram’s big 'story'.

2017 is off and running – here are 9 Digital Marketing headlines that caught our attention to start the year.
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Publishers see short-form video views on Facebook cut in half

Publishers are finding short-form video viewing figures on Facebook have plummeted as more content creators battle for space in the news feed. Read the article on >


Business Insider

Why the Lily drone that was cancelled, despite raising $34 million, was so highly anticipated

Founders of the highly anticipated drone called Lily, which raised $34 million in pre-orders in early 2015, announced on Thursday that it will not be going into production. Despite raising such a large sum in pre-orders through viral marketing that simply showed the product doing what more expensive and complicated drones could not. Read the article on >

How to Create a Customer Loyalty Program

By: Irangi Gamage
How important are your customers? Well, without any, you wouldn’t be in business. But specifically, if your business involves repeat customers then we ask a different question:“how important are loyal customers to a business?” Bob Konsewisz, a strategist consultant for Maritz Loyalty, states that loyal customers are worth five or six times more than regular customers. Therefore retaining customers is crucial for a business. A customer loyalty program can be designed to say thank you, and to encourage future business from your customers as well as referrals.
A customer loyalty program is an incentive program that lets your frequent customers get discounts, VIP sales coupons, advanced purchase access to upcoming products, or gain points which can later be redeemed for prizes. If you don’t have one in place, here is how you can get started on a customer loyalty program.

Creating a Customer Loyalty Program

When designing a customer loyalty program, start by asking these two questions:
  1. What are the incentives that customers will receive?
  2. What type of a loyalty program do you want to create? You will need to decide if you want to provide your customers a discount with purchases, a points program that can later be redeemed for free products and prizes, free shipping, or products and services that are exclusive for them. Loyalty programs are not limited to these, once you know what type of a program you want, you can get creative. It is typically a good idea to look at your competitors for loyalty program ideas. You can make one that is similar to theirs, or make one that is unique to further differentiate yourself from competitors.
  3. What is the process for customers to achieve their incentives?
  4. How will customers progress to the goal of getting rewarded? Will they have to make more purchases, visit the store more often, refer friends, and/or partake in social media contests? You don’t have to pick only one of these actions. Your loyalty program can consist of multiple actions that may allow them to receive awards.

Tips for Creating a Customer Loyalty Program

  1. For a successful customer loyalty program, it is important to have a moderate level of difficulty, that also provides value for your business.

  2. Research done by professors Nunes and Dreze on loyalty programs showed that providing customers with early advancements as a bonus increases the effectiveness of a customer loyalty program.

    An example: A coffee shop provides customers with two different point cards. The first one has 8 slots to fill before getting a free drink (buy 8 drinks to get one free). The second card has 10 slots to fill with two already stamped (buy 8 more drinks to get one free). At the end of the day, both these cards are the same. Customers with either card will have to buy 8 drinks to receive a free one. However, customers with the second card tend to finish their card and get their free drink more often than the customers with the first card. This is because they feel as though they got a head start to the game. The two filled slots help the customers visualize the end of the game, which will encourage them to visit the store more often to get their card stamped.

  3. The loyalty program should be sufficiently promoted by your employees to the customers. This is an efficient way for your customers to get to know about the programs your business has to offer. Therefore, it is important to train your employees, teach them about your loyalty programs, and encourage them to communicate this to your customers. Social media, newsletters, and flyers can also be used to convey these information to customers, which will further promote and maintain your loyalty program.

  4. Be creative and keep the program fresh by changing it up every once in awhile. For example, you can give extra points for referrals in one month and extra points for social media tags in the next month, or give a free product on birthdays.
Some examples of customer loyalty incentive techniques:
  • Loyalty Cards & Coupon discounts like those from grocery & retail stores
  • Additional or one-time credits by signing up to receive eblasts, or social media actions
  • Additional points earned for each month of a paid monthly subscription
  • Additional points earned for each referring someone who becomes a customer
  • Tiered savings and rewards redemption rates (incentive to build up points as they are worth more at different levels)
Having a customer loyalty program can be beneficial for your business because it adds value to it by increasing the retention rate of your loyal customers, and encouraging new customers to do business with you. Applying the tips mentioned above could help you when creating your own customer loyalty program. Contact us if you get stuck and visit our blog for similar articles.

Friday Five Roundup: From Video Marketing to Influencer Marketing, Personal Data, Snapchat, and Creative Tools


Why You Need to Focus on Video Marketing in 2017

Video is growing to dominate your audience's online activity. If you don't already have a video marketing strategy in place for your website and social media, you're missing a tremendous opportunity to reach and engage with your audience.
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How to Identify the Perfect Influencer for Your Business

The landscape and tools used in marketing are constantly changing and so are the jobs that go along with them. Learn about the work possibilities in marketing that are just around the corner.
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Globe and Mail

Consumers See Value in Their Personal Data, Global Survey Finds

People are more aware than ever that their personal information has financial value. At the same time, they have very little transparency as to who knows what about them, how their data is gathered and how it is used for commercial purposes.
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5 Creative Tools Used Every Day By Google, IDEO, and Other Top Innovation Firms

In business today, creativity is required of people more than ever to stay competitive and profitable in a world that's becoming more complicated by the day. Here's 5 creativity tools from some of the top firms in the world, to stay above the fray and keep those creative juices flowing.
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Snapchat Is Beginning to Use Machine Learning to Improve Ad Targeting

Snapchat is adding ways to optimize campaign performance with the help of machine learning. Find out how you can use these tools to better your campaigns.
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