Monthly Archives: February 2020
In Mark Jaccard’s new book, *The Citizen’s Guide to Climate Success,* he argues that the key is to stop obsessing about notions like peak oil.
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I think you’ll agree with us when we say, “It’s really hard to get conversions from social media channels.” Hours of creation and curation later, all we get are a few likes or just basic inquiries. But what if we told you that getting leads from social media isn’t quite a very hard nut to crack?
In fact, by using the below-mentioned tools we managed to get 89 new enquires in the past week alone. That’s a 594% staggering increase from the 12-13 leads that managed to squiggle through previously.
Well, our magic potion is certainly a mix of a few tricks and tools that helped us to achieve this feat. But most importantly, it is the result of months of trials, tests, and efforts of keeping the social community engaged through frequent posting and analyzing.
What exactly are social media conversions?
Conversions from social media could be anything – from gaining new subscribers to your mailing list, more app downloads, website visits, to closing sales through your social channels. These conversions are an important part of digital marketing services and strategy.
The question now is, how do you, as a marketer gain meaningful conversions from your social media channels?
To help you out, we’ve put together a list of our most trusted social media tools for marketing that helped us gain an edge over our competitors:
1. Ace your social game with Agorapulse
Agorapulse is a social community and moderation tool that helps businesses manage all their social network profiles. Furthermore, it helps you gather critical data like statistics and reporting to help you gain high-quality insights, devise and execute effective social media campaigns.
It is the ultimate social media tool as you can connect it to every social account that you run. Plus it also provides a CRM platform making it efficient for sales-oriented tasks.
One amazing feature in Agorapulse is its ‘Social Inbox’. If you are the kind of brand that likes to stay connected with your customers and monitor each brand mention, then Agorapulse is the tool for you. All your social media notifications will appear in the social inbox, so you can take action and reply to comments and mentions directly from this social inbox.
As a social listening tool, Agorapulse can also find mentions of your brand on social media, where you haven’t been tagged. This generally helps you to identify negative reviews and smell a crisis before the disaster strikes. You can also set up custom searches for whatever query or keyword you like.
Content scheduling and queueing
Scheduling is easier too with categories. With the Chrome plugin, you can schedule content on the go.
As a B2B company, it is important to know if your clients are interested in your brand’s social content. Agorapulse lets you see your most engaged followers, who are more likely to become customers or clients in the near future.
Analytics and reporting
Agorapulse stands out for its in-depth analytics reports. These reports help in measuring your social media ROI to see if your efforts on social media are paying off. Compare your page’s performance to those of your competitors, to know where you are lacking.
Agorapulse, beyond the trial period, is a paid tool. But if you are serious about getting leads and conversions on social media, it is definitely one that we recommend spending on. Agorapulse plans come in four different pricing ranges.
- Medium- $ 99/mo
Best for small businesses
- Large-$ 199/mo
Best for agencies
- Extra Large-$ 299/mo
Best for larger organizations
- Enterprise-$ 499/mo
Best for large teams with many profiles
Agorapulse remains the favorite social management tool for big names like Ogilvy, Disney, Dove, and Yves Saint Laurent.
2. Understand your social media audience with Socialbakers
Socialbakers is a tool that can manage and measure everything from social media to your audiences in one place. It helps you discover your customer personas, what content resonates with them and which influencers do they like.
One of the more important things with social media is to understand the kind of content that resonates with your audience. Getting to know what your followers like and engage with, helps you in creating more relevant posts and content for the future. After all, content is created with the latent aim of getting customers in the long run.
Enter Socialbakers – an all in one analytical tool that helps you get the most of your data.
Creating detailed reports
Social media managers often tend to struggle with making customized performance reports to review their efforts on social media. With social bakers, you can get a complete analytical report scheduled to your inbox at set intervals of time. Save it as a presentation or excel sheet or PDF to peruse when required.
The multi compare feature in Socialbakers allows you to pit yourself against 10 other similar brands from your industry, so you can identify where you stand. By recognizing their strengths and weaknesses, you can create a better content strategy.
Discover what content is clicking with your audience, to do more of what’s working and engaging the viewers. Monitor your social media performance over different platforms to see which social channel is doing best.
Know your most engaged audience
Also, Socialbaker’s the ‘Response Time Evolution’ feature lets you determine the highest engagement time frame, you can mark the exact hour at which your posts should go out to get more responses.
Socialbakers has two pricing plans that are determined by the number of profiles you wish to manage with it.
- 10 profiles- $ 19/mo
- 20 profiles- $ 38/mo
Socialbakers is the tool of choice for brands like Sony, Samsung, Nat Geo, Vodafone, Walmart, and more.
3. Integrate apps, save time, and do more sales with Zapier
Zapier is an online automation tool that connects two or more apps. It automates simple repetitive tasks eliminating the need for coding and human intervention.
Zapier automation helps you manage your social media and spend time engaging in meaningful customer conversations.
Automate repetitive tasks
Zapier helps you by creating time-saving zaps or workflows that are fully automated. It is a personal assistant that does little tasks for you.
Crossposting across different social media platforms is easy with Zapier. That means if you post a new picture on Instagram, and want the same to be posted on your Facebook account, you don’t need to do it manually each time.
Many people face issues crossposting their Instagram content on Twitter. The pictures appear as links, which need to be clicked and can be viewed only on the native platform. Zapier allows you to create image tweets from Instagram that can be directly viewed on Twitter.
Ongoing sync among apps
As social media managers usually suffer from a lack of time, they look to automate simple tasks, these tasks could be anything from posting the same content on different platforms, posting blog links to social media channels, saving interested leads and sign-up form data to a Google sheet, and more.
Zapier eases the burden by automating all these processes.
The best part about Zapier is that there are already hundreds of zap recipes created for you to use. If you are unsure, you can even customize a zap, by specifying a trigger and the resultant action.
Zapier is a free tool for up to 100 tasks a month, and single-step Zaps, but if you want advanced features, and more zaps then there are four paid upgrades.
- Starter- $ 25/mo
- Professional- $ 61/mo
Advanced tools and unlimited Zaps
- Professional- $ 61/mo
- Team- $ 374/mo
Collaborate with team
- Company- $ 749/mo
Zapier is trusted by teams large and small. Popular users include BuzzFeed, Spotify, Adobe and Fox network.
4. Get high-quality B2B leads with Lusha
Lusha is primarily an email and phone number tracker. It is GDPR compliant and helps you get the contact information of B2B leads you’re interested in. Interestingly, you can even integrate Lusha with your salesforce to capture leads, contacts, and other sales front data.
Email and phone number finder
We tried using Lusha on our Linkedin profile and got some amazing results. Apart from people who regularly interact with our content on Linked in, we delved deeper and found contacts of people that we were interested to sell our services to. We primarily targeted CEOs, Marketing Managers, and key decision-makers.
With a warm list of qualified leads, we were able to create smart email campaigns. Also, using the phone numbers that we got through Lusha, we were able to pitch our services over sales calls.
The plugin works on LinkedIn, Gmail, and Salesforce platforms. Generally, contact information is hidden on LinkedIn, and to contact someone, you’ll have to send a message or an In-mail. With the click of a single button, Lusha shows you the personal email, work email, and phone numbers of the person you want to get in contact with.
The free plan gives you five credits. That means you can view the contact information of five different profiles. However, if you wish to export contacts, and save them to your CRM, you have to purchase a paid plan. Lusha prices its plans on the basis of the number of Lusha credits. There are 3 pricing packages to choose from.
- Professional – $ 75/mo
- Premium – $ 149/mo
- Enterprise – Price upon consultation
Lusha empowers some of the world’s best companies. These include Google, Uber, Dropbox, Facebook, Microsoft and more.
Social media traffic has a low conversion rate of only 0.71% when compared to search campaigns and email marketing. However, given that we put in smart work and regularly monitor our efforts, we can milk in more leads than usual. What’s really important to note is the knowledge of each social medium and how audiences behave on different social platforms.
With the above mentioned social media tools for marketing, your social media team is better equipped for conversions. If you’re still unsure about your social media conversion strategy, you can avail digital marketing services of an experienced agency.
Shaista Mujeeb is a Copywriter at Wolftain Agency.
The post Four powerful tools to optimize your social media conversions appeared first on Search Engine Watch.
Even though marketing has changed quite a bit over the past decade as new channels and strategies have opened up, there is one method that remains just as effective as ever – email marketing.
Email marketing averages a 3800% ROI for both B2C and B2B companies, and 80% of businesses find that it directly correlates to higher business retention, too. However, email marketing has not stayed completely the same over the past few years and companies will need to adjust to stay relevant in 2020.
For example, in 2020, the vast majority of emails will be opened on mobile devices as opposed to desktops or webmail apps.
But, there are other changes and trends that marketers need to be aware of to keep their email marketing engaging and fresh as we enter a new decade.
Let’s break down the best practices that businesses should be using as they transition their marketing strategies for the new year.
1. Embrace the concept of smart permission-based advertising
Email marketing used to be sort of a wide net that was cast to a large audience with the intent of catching whatever it could. These days, technology allows companies to be far more strategic and hyper-target their receivers based on data, such as demographics or behavior.
However, customers do not always love this idea of intense targeting or generalized marketing. 77% of consumers prefer permission-based advertising, specifically through email – as opposed to direct mail, text, or social ads.
This means that to grow open rates, businesses must understand the importance of consent for targeting through opt-in email marketing. This means providing customers with the option to choose what types of marketing messages they receive from you – as well as the frequency of these emails.
For example, West Elm allows their email subscribers to choose when they want to receive emails, such as when the store is running a promotion or there are new arrivals in stock. Customers can also choose the frequency.
The majority of people will unsubscribe if they feel like businesses are constantly trying to sell them something. So it is important for companies to find the sweet spot by giving customers options that put them in control of the content they receive.
2. Remember: We live in a post-GDPR world
Modern businesses are extremely reliant on data for just about everything these days. But after all of the data leaks and breaches that occurred over the past years, as well as scandals coming to light of giant companies illegally gathering and selling customer data, consumers are warier than ever of sharing personal information.
Although the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is only in place in Europe currently, it has implications that affect businesses around the globe. For example, if your business services customers within the EU, your data collection processes must be GDPR compliant. Furthermore, these regulations have opened the eyes of many consumers to the importance of data protection.
Email marketing is heavily scrutinized when it comes to data collection so it’s important to incorporate elements into your email marketing that build trust with your audience.
One way to encourage data sharing is through transparency. Let your customers know how data sharing benefits them with personalized offers or better experiences. See how Teva does with their email opt-ins for data sharing.
3. Don’t overdo the email designs
Flashy designs, animated graphics, and multiple CTAs within an email no longer work the magic they used to. Many people find them simply annoying or even spammy, especially if they are checking the message on their mobile device.
Instead, keep the focus on what your brand has to offer and not solely on how “cool” the email looks. Get to the point quickly. If you are promoting a sale, display some good deals and incorporate CTAs that drive customers directly to those product pages.
Also, be sure to stick to the elements that influence customer behavior – like reviews. Not only do reviews help to improve your SEO, but they can also increase click-through rates.
For example, The Pearl Source used Trustpilot to automatically embed reviews into their marketing content – including email marketing, on their website, and on product pages. This helped consumers see overall ratings and comments before buying.
By displaying their total number of over 6,500 verified reviews, the brand also established social proof and cultivated trust with new consumers off the bat.
In the world of email marketing and marketing as a whole, authenticity trumps flashy designs. This is a reality that has solidified itself over the past decade and will almost certainly continue into the 20s.
4. Automate your hyper-personalized campaigns
Automation in email marketing offers a lot of great benefits. It can do wonders to impact sales by lowering cart abandonment and boosting customer retention rates. The more relevant your emails are, the more revenue you stand to generate and the best way to ensure this is through personalized automation.
This goes beyond just including the customer’s name in the subject heading. Instead, every element of the messaging needs to be catered to a customer based on key data points, such as:
- Their product viewing history
- Past purchases
- Recent behavior
One great example is this automated email from Tarte Cosmetics, which sends out personally curated product suggestions based on the customer’s purchases and product views.
In 2020, it will be crucial for companies to use trigger-based automation to perfect the timing of their messages. For instance, say that a customer views a product and adds it to their cart, but ends up abandoning it. If an email is sent 24 hours later alerting them that stock is running low or the price has dropped, it could result in a conversion.
In 2020, it is quite apparent that consumers want more control over their experiences and interactions with brands. So, it is important that marketers understand how to accommodate consumers’ preferences when it comes to email marketing – while still being able to increase sales.
By opting for permission-based marketing and including more elements that matter to consumers like personalization, reviews, and data sharing options, you can expect to see impressive returns from your email marketing in 2020.
Manish Dudharejia is the President and Founder of E2M Solutions Inc.
The post Four key email marketing practices to lead your business into 2020 appeared first on Search Engine Watch.
The cameras on our phones are getting good enough that it’s becoming hard to justify having a dedicated picture-taking device. Fujifilm’s X100 series has always made one of the strongest cases for it, however, and the latest iteration makes it more convincing than ever.
I reviewed the original X100 back in 2011, and the series has received a new model about every two years since its announcement; today’s X100V is the fifth. But its changes are more significant than those of any one of its predecessors.
The X100V has a new 24-megapixel APS-C sensor and image processor, taken from Fuji’s high-end X-Pro3, which I’ve used and been quite impressed with. It also inherits the X-Pro3’s much-improved OLED/optical viewfinder, autofocus system and other features. But they’re married to a redesigned 35mm equivalent, F/2 lens that improves on what was already excellent glass.
The series has always had a throwback aesthetic, adding dials while others eliminated them, but in a concession to modernity the rear LCD is now a tilting touchscreen, now a must-have for many shooters. It also has improved video capabilities, and is now weatherproofed as well.
All these fit into a package that is highly compact and attractive, though admittedly considerably thicker than a phone. But although under some circumstances a phone camera can indeed rival a dedicated camera, the X100V perhaps more than any other compact camera justifies itself (incidentally, DPReview’s initial impressions are highly favorable).
The shooting experience is so different (the hybrid viewfinder is and always has been genius), it puts so many options at your disposal, and the resulting image will not only be superior, but more defined by what you want to create than what your phone is capable of doing.
I’ve been trying to reconnect with photography and I’ve found that relying on the phone for that simply isn’t an option for me any more. I want the right tool for the job, yet I don’t want to be inconvenienced by a camera’s size or operation, or obsess over my lens selection. I want an image-taking device as dedicated to that purpose as a knife is to cutting.
Is that the X100V? There is real competition from Ricoh’s latest GR III street shooter, as well as the Canon G5 X II and Sony’s RX100 VII. Although camera sales are dropping, there’s no better time to want or have a compact device in this class. Fortunately it seems to come down to personal preference. I’d be happy with any one of those in my hand, if it means I can leave my phone in my pocket.
Now that you reviewed your SMBs’ 2019 performance, it’s time to refocus and think about goals for 2020. Have your goals changed? Are you now focusing more on efficiency, new customer acquisition, or building upper-funnel leads?
Are you trading efficiency for awareness or vice versa? Are there new customer segments that you are pursuing? Do you have new products, services, or functionalities to introduce? The answers to these questions should form the foundation of your digital growth strategy and should define the tests you run to support that strategy.
In this post, we’ll talk about the alignment of goals and tests to get you on the right path for 2020 growth.
If your main goal is building brand awareness and your base of engaged users, testing new audiences should be a key focus, with a secondary step planned for retargeting these users in the future. Facebook/IG has great demographic intelligence to tap into, and LinkedIn allows B2Bs incredible targeting capabilities by title, industry, company size, and other relevant parameters.
If you’re more focused on getting more value out of an already-healthy customer base, bringing them back to your site and working to earn more conversion, turn your attention to remarketing and user experience.
What does this mean for B2C and ecommerce?
For B2C and ecommerce, this means optimizing remarketing campaigns (testing promotions and other messaging) and running CRO tests to make sure your landing pages are finely tuned and moving the users through the conversion funnel.
What does this mean for B2B and lead gen?
For B2B and lead gen, moving a strong upper-funnel base of leads through the funnel means making sure your content and messaging is aligned with their place in the purchase journey – so test different copy and themes to see which resonate the best, then target leads that went dark during the sales process with retargeting campaigns on LinkedIn and GDN.
If your goal is to lower CPA and establish more reasonable CPCs in a world of oversaturation on Google and Facebook, I recommend testing new channels with less competition and lower CPCs/CPAs. Those platforms include Instagram, Pinterest, Quora, and Reddit.
No matter what your overall campaign goals or business type are, it’s critical to establish a testing strategy and framework for creative assets and automated features. For creative, this includes everything from ad format (video, single-image, carousel) to the aspect ratio, and specific messaging/offers. For automation, consider that Google and Facebook’s powerful machine-learning tools, including automated bidding and campaign budget optimization – can help improve performance. However, they would require oversight to ensure they’re on target. Automated creative tools, including Google’s responsive search ads and Facebook’s dynamic creative, blend machine learning with creative testing and should be tested and monitored to leverage in campaigns for all business types.
Once you begin these tests, the rock-solid measurement must inform decisions and optimizations moving forward. If your goal is to drive brand awareness, focus on improvements, on metrics such as impressions, clicks, site visits, and reach. Customer acquisition goals for B2B and lead gen should incorporate metrics including upper-funnel leads, converted leads, opportunities, CPL, and lead-to-opportunity conversion rates.
Ecommerce businesses focused on driving sales should focus on metrics like ‘add to cart’, purchases, CVR, ROAS, and CPA. Reviewing these metrics at a campaign level, ad group or ad set level, audience, and creative level will help inform decisions and future tests.
There are many more testing layers to get into, but make sure you have started towards your 2020 goals by aligning the first wave of tests and KPIs accordingly to give yourself a foundation for growth in the coming quarters.
The post How to uncover digital growth opportunities for SMBs in 2020 appeared first on Search Engine Watch.
Infor, which makes large-scale cloud ERP software, has been around since 2002 and counts Koch as both a customer and an investor, so the deal makes sense on that level. Koch was lead investor last year in a $ 1.5 billion investment where the company indicated that it was a step before going public.
It’s not clear if that is still the goal, as sources suggested that staying private might provide the company with more capital flexibility in the future.
Under the terms of the deal, Koch will be buying out the remaining equity stake in Golden Gate Capital, a secondary investor in last year’s investment. The company’s management team will remain in place and Infor will act as a stand-alone subsidiary of Koch.
Company CEO Kevin Samuleson, as you would expect, saw the deal as a positive move that allowed the company to operate with a well capitalized parent behind it. “As a subsidiary of a $ 110 billion+ revenue company that re-invests 90% of earnings back into its businesses, we will be in the unique position to drive digital transformation in the markets we serve,” he said in a statement.
Jim Hannan, executive vice president and CEO of enterprises for Koch Industries saw it similarly with Koch’s deep pockets helping to propel Infor in the future. “As a global organization spanning multiple industries across 60 countries, Koch has the resources, knowledge and relationships to help Infor continue to expand its transformative capabilities,” he said in a statement.
Holger Mueller, an analyst at Constellation Research, says it’s a strange deal on its face, but if Koch leaves Infor alone, it might work out. “When you think you have seen it all, something new comes along: A regular enterprise buys a top five ERP vendor. Now [we’ll have to see] if Koch can ensure Infor keeps building market leading software, using Koch as showcase, or becomes the Koch software affiliate.
“The latter would be an unfortunate outcome. On the positive side, enterprise software built from real user validation, that can also serve as a reference, can be very powerful,” Mueller told TechCrunch. He said it could work out great, but also has the potential to go very wrong, depending on how Koch manages a software asset.
Infor is a huge company. As we reported last year at the time of its investment:
Infor may be the largest company you never heard of, with more than 17,000 employees and 68,000 customers in more than 100 countries worldwide. All of those customers generated $ 3 billion in revenue in 2018. That’s a significant presence.
A few years ago, I hosted a podcast called ‘Ask Amanda About Marketing’. It ran for 30 episodes before going on a hiatus for over a year. Now, I’m relaunching it under a new name and with a more focused goal, and I’ve been reflecting on what I learned during the first go-around and the podcast tips I’ve acquired while getting ready to publish this next iteration.
Here are my biggest takeaways.
1. Have a narrow focus
I explained that ‘Ask Amanda About Marketing’ involved me (and sometimes guests) answering various questions people had about digital marketing.
The first thing he said? Narrow your focus.
There are hundreds of marketing podcasts out there, so in order to provide value that isn’t duplicative of what people can already access, you have to hone in your objective. Who exactly do you plan to help, and how exactly do you plan to help them?
He had a point. While I loved the first iteration of the show, it was topically scattered, and I knew we could benefit from honing in our purpose.
We landed on ‘Cashing in on content marketing’, a show all about proving content marketing ROI and getting buy-in.
Armed with a narrow focus, it was time to book guests.
2. Don’t hide behind the mic
It’s convenient to be able to podcast from home and have conversations with incredibly smart people all over the world through Zoom or Skype or some other platform.
But don’t forget to attend in-person events. While you can cold-pitch people (and we certainly have), you can build much better connections when you meet people in the real world.
Of the first 11 people I have booked to be guests on the show, seven of them are people I met in the last year at marketing events.
Because when you meet people in person, you’re forming a much stronger connection than people you sometimes interact with online. There’s still value in online interactions, of course, but nothing surpasses good ol’ fashioned IRL (in real life) meeting.
If you don’t have a lot of event budget, many conferences have free or cheap community passes, like Inbound. Also, check for local events; some companies host events and meetups in their cities, and these community connections can be just as important. For example, Orbit Media hosts affordable monthly events in Chicago.
3. Do your research
Once you book guests, it’s time to figure out what you’ll talk about.
My personal style is to keep it conversational, but you still need to set up a framework of questions so you make sure the chatting stays on-topic and that your guest feels guided through the conversation.
I generally have at least five questions that shape the direction of what I want to talk about. If the person has written blog posts, books, or conference presentations that are relevant, I read those and ask questions that refer to those materials.
Not sure if these materials exist? Ask them in advance.
Give them an idea of what you want to talk about, but allow them to switch up the angle based on what they’re passionate about and have expertise in.
For example, when talking to Mark Schaefer before having him on the show, I told him we could talk about his newest book “Marketing Rebellion,” but he suggested focusing on “The Content Code” since it might be more in line with the podcast’s goals.
When you touch base before the show, you’re able to establish directions that are better for your audience. And you can prepare accordingly. I brushed up on both books and asked questions about referencing material from them.
As a result, Mark said,
“Thank you so much for reading my books and being so well-prepared with your questions – it was a pleasure.”
Don’t underestimate how much prepping for the interview can set you up for success. You want your questions to be different from everyone else’s, otherwise, you’ll end up with a show that doesn’t stand out.
If you follow this advice – focus and differentiate your podcast’s mission, meet marketing professions IRL, and go above and beyond when preparing for interviews – you’ll be setting a solid foundation for your podcasting endeavor.
But most importantly – Keep your audience in mind. You’re not creating this for yourself, or your company, or your guests. You’re creating it to help, inspire, or inform your listeners. Don’t lose sight of that, and you’ll continue making the ideal decisions for your show.
Amanda Milligan is the Marketing Director at Fractl, a prominent growth marketing agency that’s worked with Fortune 500 companies and boutique businesses.
The post Three crucial podcast tips from Fractl’s Marketing Director appeared first on Search Engine Watch.
If the goal of conversion rate optimization (CRO) is to alter users’ behavior, we need to first understand how they currently behave and what’s preventing them from taking that desired action.
Read more at PPCHero.com