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Five content promotion strategies SaaS marketers should implement today

September 1, 2020 No Comments

30-second summary:

  • Having a promotion plan is a key component of a successful content marketing strategy.
  • There’s more to effective promotion than just sharing articles on social media. Your promotion strategy has to be tactical if you want to cut through the noise.
  • The best way to maximize the number of people that see your content is to promote and distribute it across various channels.
  • Directive’s Content Writer, Izabelle Hundrev, shares five creative content promotions strategies that SaaS marketers can use to cut through the noise in an overpopulated industry.

What’s the point of creating content if no one sees it? There isn’t one.

That’s why promoting and distributing content is equally as important as writing it. Without a solid promotional strategy, even the most original and compelling piece of content has the potential to fall flat. 

When looking at the software-as-a-service (SaaS) industry specifically, space is becoming increasingly crowded. No matter what audience or niche your business serves, there’s a good chance there’s already content out there that’s covering the topics you’re trying to target. 

Software marketers must think outside-the-box if they want their content to stand out and connect with audiences.

In this article, I’ll share five simple and effective promotional strategies that are guaranteed to get more of the right eyes on your content. 

Five easy-to-implement content promotion strategies

Ultimately, the goal of content marketing is to drive traffic, generate leads, and grow revenue. 

You can spend countless hours crafting the “best”, most comprehensive resource on the web. However, if that article just sits on your site with no traffic or engagement, then it’s not really making much of an impact toward your bottom line.

To have a powerful content marketing strategy that meets your target audience, you must build out a robust promotion plan that extends across multiple channels.

Let’s get started. 

1. Social media

Social media is likely the first place your mind goes when you think of promotion.

It’s no secret that social networks are a simple way to get eyes on your content – and fast. The downside is that everybody knows this, and therefore, everyone’s already doing it. 

To make your content stand out on social, you have to get creative.

The power of multimedia

Social feeds are crowded. 

Think about how quickly you scroll through your Twitter or Facebook feed. Brands have to go the extra mile to make their posts stand out and entice the right people to stop scrolling. One of the simplest ways to do this through multimedia.

When building out a content promotion plan, strategize what graphics, GIFs, or videos could accompany your social post. 

This could be as simple as sharing a funny GIF that relates to the article or creating a video testimonial to share alongside a brand new case study. Users are much more likely to engage with your posts if you incorporate an element of entertainment or creativity to capture their attention.

Here’s an example of a graphic that incorporates a quote:

Five content promotion strategies Saas marketers: social media


Source: Gong

This post is eye-catching and features a quote to further pique the viewers’ interest. It also ties in a real person’s photo, showing a personal touch.

In a study done by Buzzsumo, the data shows Facebook posts with images get 2.3x more engagement. This isn’t just unique to Facebook either. According to Brandwatch, tweets with images receive 18% more click-throughs and 89% more likes.

As a reader, you’re naturally more inclined to stop scrolling and pay attention if there’s a compelling piece of multimedia to draw you in.

“One more time for the people in the back”

There’s no reason why you can’t share content on social media more than once, as long as it’s done correctly. 

The most important thing to keep in mind when re-distributing old content is to offer variety. Switch up the copy each time you re-post. One easy way to do this is by highlighting different pieces of the article in your posts. 

For example, let’s say the first time you shared the article you included a quote from the piece in the social copy. Next time you share it, include a different quote, or maybe a compelling statistic or graphic instead. 

Don’t be afraid to experiment with different platforms either. If you primarily share content on Twitter and LinkedIn, try sharing the same piece of content on Facebook or Instagram with different visuals. 

I’m harping a lot on variety here, but there’s a fine line between resharing content with added value, and just resharing for the sake of it. You don’t want your social media feeds to be filled with stale, recycled material. Nowadays, social media users can easily spot a brand account that’s lazy with their posts.

The primary focus of your social media accounts should be on highlighting new content pieces. However, it’s generally OK to sprinkle a few old ones into the mix as long as there’s something new and compelling being offered to the viewer. 

It takes a village to find the essential balance 

While we don’t know for sure what factors trigger different social media posts to appear on users’ feeds, we do know that engagement helps. This means every like, share, and comment can help to boost a post’s reach and impressions.  

There’s no guarantee that other users will engage with your posts, but you can encourage your coworkers and other internal employees to help the posts’ awareness. 

After all, your fellow employees are an extension of your brand. Each of them has their own unique social network of followers that could benefit from seeing your content.

You don’t want this to feel like just another work-related task. It can be easy to forget that not everyone is a naturally-gifted copywriter that feels confident sharing and posting. Aim to make it simple for others in your organization to get active on social media. 

For example, when you’re gearing up for a big promotional launch, create a cheat sheet of pre-written social copy and send over several variations that fit different channels. 

People have the option to use the copy you wrote or they can lean on it for inspiration. Doing small things like this can help to lessen some of the friction that comes along with asking others to engage with your posts.

2. Email marketing

Email newsletters are a popular marketing tactic due to their many benefits and use cases. Content Marketing Institute reports that 70% of B2B marketers use email to distribute content and 40% cite newsletters as critical to marketing success. 

It’s clear there’s inherent value in using email as a channel for content promotion. The people on your subscriber list are some of your most loyal brand advocates. Think about it — they “opted into receiving your emails. This makes your subscribers some of the best people to share your content with.

Personalization comes first

Your newsletter isn’t going to be very engaging if it’s just a roundup of the last five articles you’ve published. 

A newsletter that’s been hastily thrown together is a guaranteed one-way ticket to the unsubscribe button. When sharing content with your email subscribers, make the experience feel special and curated. Think carefully about what types of content matter most to your email list.

In the example below, take note of how the tone is really conversational and makes the reader feel like it’s a personal email from a friend or colleague, rather than a newsletter.

Five content promotion strategies Saas marketers: Personalized emailsIf you were a search marketing company and you know one-third of your audience cares about PPC, another one-third care about SEO, and one-third care about both – make sure you’re not sending the whole group PPC articles all the time. You’ll lose SEO subscribers.  

Be strategic here.

To take things a step further, segment your email list by more specific criteria. This could include location, age, or even by type of position (executive, manager, or individual contributor). Doing so allows you to serve your content to a more targeted subset of your audience. 

Give the people what they want

Email marketing metrics matter, but those numbers don’t always paint a full picture. 

To better understand how your subscribers feel about your newsletter content, ask for feedback.

You can do this by sending out a survey or investing in a widget that builds feedback into the newsletter interface. Some popular feedback platforms worth checking out include Mopinion and Usabilla.

Whichever you choose, try to make it as simple as possible for your subscribers to share how they feel about the content you’re sending to them. They signed up to receive valuable content and relevant promo offers, not constant surveys.

Your subscribers opted in to receive your emails for a reason, so make it worth their time. The more unique, meaningful, and concise your newsletter is the more traffic that gets directed back to your website and content. 

3. Online communities

There are a variety of online communities that center around creating and sharing content in a specific niche. 

The idea here is to be an active member of a community that’s relevant to your audience. For example, if your SaaS business sells marketing automation software, then you should aim to join communities that focus on related marketing disciplines such as email marketing or demand generation.

Five content promotion strategies Saas marketers: Online communities

Joining an online community allows you to directly interact with your audience while sharing your unique and relevant content with them. 

This can be tricky because it takes time to build authority among members of these communities. You don’t want to come across as overly promotional from the get-go. Instead, always make sure that your interactions are genuine and provide something of value. 

Don’t throw out links to your articles without context. Aim to make every interaction meaningful.

Here are a few suggestions for where to start:

Facebook groups

Although it may have begun as a platform solely for personal interactions, Facebook has grown to be a popular online community for professionals, too. There are hundreds of thousands of Facebook groups dedicated to different industries and niches. 

These groups frequently have thousands of members, making them a practical channel for content promotion. One example is the SaaS Revolutionaries group, which currently has 4000+ members. This group, run by SaaStock, is specifically geared towards founders, executives, and investors in the software space. 

Five content promotion strategies SaaS marketers: Facebook groups
Source: Facebook

GrowthHackers

GrowthHackers is an online community dedicated to sharing content and information related to growth hacking, user acquisition, marketing, and more. 

Articles can be posted and shared by anyone to the GrowthHackers blog. Members of the community will then upvote or downvote the content based on whether they like it or not. The pieces with the most upvotes are displayed prominently at the top of the homepage. 

This makes GrowthHackers a powerful platform for getting more eyes on your content and highlighting your brand’s industry expertise.

Five content promotion strategies SaaS marketers: GrowthHackers platform

Source: GrowthHackers

Quora

Quora is a question-and-answer website where users will go to ask and answer questions related to a variety of topics. 

As a promotion channel, Quora can be especially useful because it allows you to answer questions that are directly related to your content. 

This way, you build brand credibility, brand awareness, and are able to help out potential customers.

4. Paid advertising

While it’s true that you don’t need a massive budget to effectively promote your content, paying for content promotion does have its benefits. 

When promoting your content organically, you share a post and cross your fingers that it reaches your target audience. Through paid ads, you can pretty much guarantee it. 

Many of the big social media networks such as Facebook and LinkedIn have paid advertising offerings that come with advanced targeting features such as remarketing or lookalike audiences

These features make it easy for advertisers to deliver content to people who are most likely to click and read on it. This is especially beneficial when you’re promoting content with the purpose of generating leads, such as an e-book or whitepaper.

When combined with an organic promotional strategy, paid ads can be a big added driver of traffic and clicks.

5. Measure, measure, measure

Your content promotion strategy is only as powerful as the results it generates. 

That’s why continuously tracking the performance of your efforts is critical to making it worth your time.

When evaluating your promotional channels, here are some examples of key performance indicators (KPIs) you may want to take into account:

  • Click-through rate (CTR)
  • Clicks
  • Impressions
  • Engagement
  • Conversion rate
  • Pageviews

These metrics are typically used because they’re a direct reflection of how users are interacting and receiving your posts. 

Yes, a big part of promotion is about getting views, but it’s also about converting these views into something more valuable: clicks and leads.

It’s important to note that this list isn’t exhaustive. The KPIs you assign to your promotion strategy will be a unique reflection of your business goals, so it’s possible that your list ends up looking a bit different. 

The main takeaway here is you have to keep a close eye on performance across channels. You need to have a clear understanding of these metrics and how they relate to your overarching marketing goals. Otherwise, you can easily get lost in vanity metrics that don’t correlate to real business results. 

Concluding thoughts

An article isn’t done just because you hit the “publish” button. If you want your content to generate meaningful results, you must put in the effort to make it discoverable. 

Next time you find yourself stuck on creating the right promotion plan, revisit these strategies for inspiration. 

Izabelle Hundrev is a Chicago-based content writer at Directive. At Directive, Izabelle combines her sales hustle mentality and creative writing expertise to cover a wide variety of SaaS marketing topics and support long-term marketing strategy. Outside of work, Izabelle is passionate about all things pop culture, food, and travel.

The post Five content promotion strategies SaaS marketers should implement today appeared first on Search Engine Watch.

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Marketing strategies during COVID-19 times

July 13, 2020 No Comments

30-second summary:

  • If a site has never been promotedthere have been no SEO audits and there are a lot of errors in codethen link building will not help.
  • If the company is set up to work in messengersit can receive subscribers – even without the support.
  • SMM is less about direct sales and more about building a link between user and brandand content plays a primary role in this.
  • The main task now is to build an approximate plan to get back to the world and maintain feedback with clients and the team.
  • In this article, we discuss marketing strategies during COVID-19 on the lines of contextual advertising, SEO, email, social networks, and more.

Not everyone was as lucky in the pandemic as mask manufacturersfood delivery companiesZoom, and othersThe offline business had to decideeither to quickly move all the work online or limit the business in all directionsIn this article, we will discuss marketing strategies during COVID-19. 

Simply moving to the Internet is not enough: you need to understand what you are doing, and under the influence of coronavirus, marketing strategy is changing rapidly. I am going to explain what happens with contextual advertising, SEO, messengers, email, and social networks.  

You’ll find out:

  • How the demand structure in these channels is changing, 
  • How to work with them now, 
  • Whether marketing can be paused without affecting the company, 
  • Which marketing strategies are best to choose, even if there’s a shortage of money. 

PPC marketing in COVID-19 times

The trend in the PPC is as follows due to the decline in demand in general, we can see a decrease in demand in search, and search advertising subsidies in particular. Previously, PPC search and product advertising was the main source of sales. People were looking for something in search, saw ads, and bought. Context has always been an auxiliary marketing tool – creating demand, brand, remarketing. 

But nowadays, the trend returns a little, if you look at last month’s stats, banner ads and videos have become the main source of traffic from advertising. This is due to the fact that people are using streaming services, watching movies, TV series, courses, and there are banner ads everywhere. 

If we talk about conversions, then again, in most cases there is a fell. I would even say that the conversion has not fallen, but lengthened. In the past, a person coming from an advertisement would buy a simple product at once, and a more complicated product in a few clicks.  

Now, this funnel has lengthened. It became even more important to work with email, chatbots, maintain communication with other advertising channels. 

If in some areas the decision-making period was three-to-four days, it could grow to two-to-three weeks. I assume that this is due to the decrease in purchasing power because many people are on vacation or without work. Those who have money are not in a hurry to spend it, because it is not clear what will happen tomorrow. Even those who have an intention to buy something started to buy less. 

Conclusion 

Advertising is greatly reduced, due to this decreases the advertising competition. The click is cheaper and you can get cheaper traffic. And if you are ready to work with these long conversion leads – you can get them cheaper than before. 

SEO in COVID-19 times 

In most cases, organic traffic drops. And the positions of the site may be good, but the traffic is falling heavily. Demand has decreased in SEO, but again, it depends on the subject. In some niches demand has increased – someone was selling masks and antiseptics, and he had no demand but then suddenly got it. And there is, for example, tire fitting there is no change in demand because people need to retrain the car anyway. There’s no drop in demand. 

Traffic is falling in everything that concerns business services – if you take, for example, furniture for private use, the demand has not fallen much. And for offices, demand has fallen to almost zero, even those who have ordered before, stopped doing it.  

If now there is no need for “burning” clients, business is on pause, it is better to invest at least minimal in SEO, in social networks, in maintenance, and stop contextual advertising.  

How can your business save money while working on SEO? 

There are free sites, directories, where you can go and place links for free. If there is no money, this way you can optimize a good part of the budget. 

If a company does not work with content, you can follow this direction. This is a conditionally free tool – even if you don’t write it yourself, you can hire a copywriter at growyourstaff, conditionally it is not so expensive. Content can help SEO a lot, and it is much cheaper than buying links and working with technical optimization. 

If a site has never been promoted, there have been no SEO audits and there are a lot of errors in code, then link building will not help. If the site had been worked with before, now you just need to reduce budgets, you can buy fewer links or look for cheaper and free sources.

Pay more attention to the content – by publishing new articles you cover more keywords, more search queries. For example, if you sell laptops, then write “how to clean a laptop”, “how to pick up a laptop for games” and so on. A person looking for information – gets into an article, read advice, can subscribe to the mailing list, social networks, become your regular customer. It is possible in this way to reduce the budget for SEO. 

Messenger marketing and COVID-19 times

Being in a situation of forced closure, some businesses could not afford to keep their marketing budget at the same level. Accordingly, some suspended the work with messengers, as with any other channels generating leads. The reason was not even that the companies had no money left. But also the fact that there is nothing to sell and no one to sell due to quarantine if the business is related to offline services. 

Is it worth stopping the activities in messengers at all, if the company is very tight with money? If not, then how to reduce budgets for this channel with minimal damage?  

The work with messengers is divided into several categories. In terms of generating leads, traffic, and conversion, it is the same as in targeted advertising and other lead gen channels. If the business closes, it makes no sense to generate hot leads.

But the messengers themselves can be used in many different ways. For example, the funnel does not have to sell quickly. It can be long and work for involvement, heating, work not only with potential clients but also with existing ones. It makes sense to maintain such a funnel whether the business is working now or not. When the company opens its doors again, it will be able to sell to the same people – no one has forgotten about them, they have been communicating and maintaining relationships throughout this period – it is important. 

If the company is set up to work in messengers

The company may continue receiving subscribers – even without support, even in suspended advertising campaigns. However, as a budget cut, it is possible to suspend work with the contractor. In such a situation, this is a normal solution. In a few months, nothing should break. Thus, it is possible to cut the budget through new developments, testing, active generation of leads. 

SMM in COVID-19 times 

It’s bad for those who are affected by an offline fall. If offline is closed, the whole company has stopped working, and SMM too. For example, they somehow manage the account themselves, they only have enough strength for some content activity. And advertising – nobody simply comes to them, and they cannot work, and they do not maintain advertising. 

Those who are forbidden to work, and who can not accept clients in the office, reduced to almost zero advertising in social networks and other sources. And someone, on the contrary, increased, like VR clubs. They launched a new service – previously there was an offline point, which is now closed, and the equipment is idle. They’ve set up a rental service and are actively developing it. 

What are the changes in campaign traffic that continue working during quarantine? 

In some campaigns, traffic has increased, but this is due to the fact that the auction has been released. On Facebook, the current price of a click has dropped several times – simply because many competitors have left. The price is going down, the number of clicks is going up, and the traffic is going up accordingly. 

In general, somewhere it has increased, somewhere it has decreased. Now it all depends on the area in which you work. If you can reformat online painlessly enough, you’ll have some minimal reductions, there will be growth. 

Is it possible to save money on social networking?

In general, it is better not to reduce the number of posts, and make them better in quality. If the budget for advertising has decreased, then focus on the content. 

SMM is less about direct sales and more about building a link between user and brand, and content plays a primary role in this. If you lose content, the connection is broken.

In paid promotion it is possible to save on what does not bring results right now – it can be reduced. In terms of conversions now everything should be actively connected to analytics. You look through the analytics – does the campaign bring you additional conversions after the transition and application. If the results are down dramatically, you should turn it off. 

And the content takes a little time, especially if the company initially approached it correctly – there is a content strategy, a content plan, and so on. If it’s all there, there’s nothing stopping you from giving it all to one employee who’s sitting at home at a remote location to write according to a ready-made plan. If there is a strategy, there is nothing difficult about continuing to write, and it is not so expensive. 

Email marketing during COVID-19 times

At the moment the main task of the channel is to keep in touch with the client and not to give false hopes. Therefore, the only dynamics that are important to us are the unsubscribe rate and the remaining amount of “live” users. For example, these are openings in the last 60 days. 

I would advise not to stop and not to panic, the situation will somehow be solved and the brand will either resist or not. The main task now is to build an approximate plan to get back to the world and maintain feedback with clients and the team.

Stop everything – it’s like stopping a blast furnace, it’s easier to build a new one than the old one to run. So it is definitely worth reducing the volume, stopping the retention, and reviewing the basic onboard messages. 

It is important that customers know that you are alive and in control of the situation on your side. Therefore, informational digests and regular alerts when you update the situation shouldn’t be stopped. We all have already learned how to wash our hands and listen to all the CEOs, so if you have something specific – then write about it necessarily.

Evelina Brown is an internet marketing, trainer, and founder of marketing courses expert who has been involved in brand development and creation since 2012.

The post Marketing strategies during COVID-19 times appeared first on Search Engine Watch.

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How a digital publisher monetized 8X more in one month with WordPress scaling strategies

June 11, 2020 No Comments

30-second summary:

  • The project in a nutshell: A magazine-type website, monetizing programmatic ads.
  • Agency work scope: Build the platform from scratch, utilizing WordPress multisite functionality and RTK.io infrastructure plus numerous ad operation tools, migrate it to new hosting, and secure project scale.
  • Time frame: One month. 
  • Success indicators: Stability to scale to 8+ million user sessions per month with a monetization increased 8.5 times.

The Brand: Digital Publisher in Need of scaling

The project is a digital publishing platform, based on WordPress, utilizing the RTK.io  programmatic infrastructure and ad operations solution (Taboola and Outbrain). The website features authentic content оn popular topics like wellness, technologies, travel, sports, and entertainment. All articles are original and created by the media’s team of writers.  

Since launching in April 2019, the website’s monthly traffic has exceeded 8 Million users per month. Presently the website ranks globally around 23,000 in Alexa. 

How did the project start?

The client has been working with DevriX on a WordPress development retainer plan since July 2018. Initially, the website had an imperfect RTK implementation that dynamically assigned the ad unit slots according to some JavaScript logic. DevriX was hired to support and improve that old custom platform.  

But the owners were not satisfied with the business results – the monetization did not work as expected. While working on the project DevriX got more closely acquainted with the client’s goals and business operations. Both parties became aware of a clear growth opportunity. 

At that time DevriX was endorsed by RTK for building a super-fast and lightweight digital publishing platform for another major media. Soon after that, the client requested to upgrade their site with a similar solution. So at the beginning of March 2019, we started to build the whole platform from scratch, utilizing the Multisite WordPress feature.  

The challenge

Rebuild the whole platform  

When you run a digital publishing platform of this size, literally every second matter to a huge extent. The publishers’ business is very competitive and the margins are small. Every second the site is down thousands of dollars are lost and for every second delay in its performance, the loss is even bigger.  

Here is why when re-building this project, the client needed: 

  • A stable system to allow scaling traffic to several million user sessions per month 
  • Optimal integration of all programmatic platforms 
  • A reliable hosting solution and 24/7 maintenance to never allow downtime 
  • A seamless UX experience to engage and monetize the traffic

The solution

New digital publishing platform 

Just within one month, in April 2019, DevriX launched the new version of the WordPress website, utilizing the RTK.io technology, together with several other third-party native ad integrations. We created a faster and more stable platform, with quality code and technical solutions that enhance performance and monetize higher traffic.   

Here is how DevriX delivered the project to the above requirements: 

1. Build a multisite WordPress platform

We created a multisite network, allowing for the platform – together with all its programmatic implementations – to be multiplied into several digital publishing websites. The network is easily managed by a super admin and its potential growth is practically unlimited.  

Here is our one-month roadmap agreement with the client with a step-by-step description of the work done: 

  • WordPress theme selection
  • Child theme creation and adjusting it to the developed layouts
  • RTK implementation as a basis and ads being available on inserting a shortcode
  • Creation of several page layouts to serve ads
  • Infinite scroll layout
  • Gallery layout
  • Snapchat compatible layout
  • Quizzes pages 
  • Third-party native ads integration (Taboola and Outbrain, to name a few) 

The list of technologies and third-party tools and service integration is long but just to name a few: 

  • Pagely CDN 
  • RTK – for header bidding ads 
  • Amazon A9  
  • Taboola 
  • Outbrain  
  • Ad Lightning – to filter for bad ads 
  • OneSignal – for push notifications 
  • Google Analytics (through Google Tag Manager) – for tracking and statistics 
  • Facebook Pixel – for tracking and statistics 

2. Migrate the website to an upgraded hosting account 

To ensure the success of the project, DevriX partnered with Pagely to migrate the newly developed system to an advanced hosting with an upgraded plan that is a must to ensure scalability. 

We tested several different combinations and recommended the following hosting set-up: dedicated database (M4) on top of VPS-2 plus a larger dedicated database.   

3. Improve the ways the WordPress website was monetized 

DevriX also worked on improving the user experience of the new platform. Monetization was improved by producing optimized layouts for ad serving and an infinite scroll for all archive pages. All development was done with a focus on yield management and ad stack governance on behalf of the business owners. 

Success indicators

A solution that boosts monetization 

The technical solution described above allowed for the scaling of the project in the months to follow, scaling up to 187 million page views monthly and increasing its monetization more than eight times.

Fast and stable performance 

The new build ensured:

  • Increased speed: Currently, the site’s speedby Google PageSpeed tool, is 91/100 for desktop. 
  • Ultimate stability for high traffic: the site’s traffic back in March 2019 before the rebuild was about 1.4 million user sessions while for the second half of 2019 it was scaled up to eight-plus million monthly. 

User engagement and popularity

  • Improved UX solutions to engage users: The platform has an impressively low bounce rate of 7-8%, with an industry average of 15%.
  • Growing popularity: Currently, the platform ranks about 23,000 at Alexa, on a global scale 

That proves the excellent user engagement and content satisfaction, which eventually leads to higher ROI. 

Monetization

Ad-serving optimization is a big contributor to the project. The main success of this project was achieving the initial goal to increase monetization. Within several months the platform’s monetization grew up 8.5 times. 

Wrapping up

This project is a very simple example of how quality development may dramatically improve website performance and monetization. Before and after the build the client used the same combination of a content management system – WordPress – and the RTK programmatic platform. But the business results differ almost ten times. 

Last but not least, the digital publishing platform was created in only four weeks. That would not have been possible without the prior experience of both parties with the technologies and without working in a close partnership within a long-term WordPress development retainer.  

Mario Peshev is the CEO of DevriX, a global WordPress agency serving industries from publishing to automotive and airline. He is also a core contributor to the WordPress project, an Inbound Certified marketer, and a multi-disciplined business owner with a wide scope of skills. He can be found on Twitter @no_fear_inc.

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COVID-19 has altered paid search: How marketers can adjust strategies

May 30, 2020 No Comments

30-second summary:

  • Since shelter-in-place rules were enacted, the way people use the internet has changed. They’re consuming more media and increasing web research and browsing. 
  • Paid search strategy is not one-size-fits-all. Each vertical must be treated differently, as some industries like ecommerce have seen improved performance while others have seen a declined performance. 
  • A pandemic is not the time to cut ad budget. Instead, investing in advertising now should pay dividends when the market normalizes. 
  • Ensure your ad copy is appropriate for the landscape. That means even going back to a campaign that started before the pandemic to update any language that isn’t applicable to the current landscape. 
  • Marketers must stay flexible and agile during this time and monitor what’s working or not working and creating a quick plan to adjust. 

When COVID-19 began spreading across the U.S., marketers scrambled to figure out how to respond. Sudden work-from-home mandates, cancelled business trips, postponed conferences and frozen budgets threw a wrench into usual expectations and plans. Users’ needs and online behaviours have changed in tandem, forcing marketers to meet them on their new terms.  

Search is more important than ever now because people are spending almost all of their time at home and online, consuming media, researching, browsing and shopping. According to Forbes, total internet hits have surged by 50% to 70% with people under lockdown, while 32% of people say they are spending longer on social media. Hours spent in non-gaming apps are up as people turn to TikTok, WhatsApp, Instagram and Twitter to keep entertained, connected and informed. To stay relevant in these turbulent times, it’s imperative that marketers maintain their paid search presence while adjusting to the needs of the moment.  

Vary strategy by vertical 

While no industry is immune from the impact of coronavirus, businesses are affected differently and should adapt their paid search strategies accordingly. Industries like B2B and ecommerce have seen improved performance, while industries like travel and healthcare have struggled with poor results.  

The fact that healthcare is struggling may seem paradoxical, given the overwhelming need for healthcare services right now. While hospitals are busy with COVID-19 patients, people who don’t have the virus are avoiding medical centres, hospitals, and non-essential medical services like bariatric surgery and physical therapy.

Users are shifting their searches for their healthcare needs. Notably, people under shelter-in-place orders are seeking to receive care while staying in their homes. eMarketer published data from CivicScience which found that between February and March 2020, the number of U.S. adults who reported intent to use telemedicine rose from 18% to 30%. As a result, healthcare providers have to switch their offerings – along with their messaging – to emphasize virtual and telehealth services. The same is true for many restaurants as they pivot to pick up or delivery only.  

The situation is different for B2B companies

The situation is different for B2B companies, which have longer sales cycles. While businesses like restaurants are worried about running out of money now, B2B companies are concerned about how they’ll fare months and, in some cases, years from now. The instinct may be to cut down on marketing budgets to save money, but extreme changes in paid search strategies can have long-lasting effects on performance. During this time, it’s important B2B companies continue filling the funnel and building brand awareness to alleviate large sales gaps that can occur later in the year.  

Financial service-related searches are surging

Financial service-related searches are surging right now as people explore their options for economic relief like loans. Many companies in this space are smartly increasing their ad spending and shifting the bulk of it toward campaigns that push their best performing service lines. The same is true for ecommerce companies, especially those that sell household products and cleaning supplies, loungewear, cooking equipment, workout gear and entertainment items like board games and puzzles. Shares of Hasbro, for instance, have soared. For these companies, the adjustment is less about the offerings and more about the messaging.  

Don’t stop advertising when times are tough 

There are universal principles for how to optimize paid search strategies that apply to marketers in every industry. The first is not to neglect paid search, even during difficult times. The World Federation of Advertisers (WFA) recently ran a survey which found 81% of large advertisers deferred planned ad campaigns and cutting budgets due to the coronavirus pandemic. Of those surveyed, 57% said they had decreased budgets greatly or somewhat due to the virus outbreak; however, cutting out advertising or marketing completely can make the road to recovery more challenging.  

Experts advise not to stop advertising during a downturn. Evidence from recent economic downturns like the 2008 housing crash show that companies come out stronger in the end if they continue investing in brand awareness. According to Google, “Even in categories where consumers have pulled back spending right now, creating a branding impact now will have a halo and pay dividends when the market normalizes. Research and historical examples of economic downturn have shown this to work.” It’s important to keep investing in your brand and branded keywords, regardless of industry. The last thing an organization wants is competitors monetizing on branded search results.  

Every cent counts these days. Not only is paid search cost-effective with a low barrier to entry, but it also enables companies to be extremely agile. A company can get a campaign up and running pretty quickly, run tests, collect data and easily alter the messaging as things change day-to-day. Marketers can also see the results of engagement, click-through rates and conversions in real time, so they know whether their investment is paying off. COVID-19 is an unprecedented situation, so testing and learning are critical during this volatile time in the market.  

Best practices for paid search 

For any marketer thinking about how to adjust during COVID-19, here are a few best practices for how to optimize paid search.

1. Pivot messaging

Messaging needs to be both accurate and appropriate for the current landscape. Confirm that messaging is updated with current business hours and offerings, and revise CTAs away from messages like “Visit in-store.”  

2. Keep an eye on the tone of messaging

Is your copy appropriate or empathetic? An ad for booking a vacation package could feel out-of-touch. Customers will be turned off by companies that seem like they are trying to profit or gain from the pandemic, so craft communication to focus more on brand identity and values. Businesses can also use marketing to let customers know how they are responding to the pandemic. A construction firm or ecommerce company could talk about safety practices for workers, for example.   

3. Adapt offerings to what your customers need

As mentioned above, healthcare companies are moving to telehealth, restaurants are moving to pick up, delivery and B2B companies are repurposing content planned for conferences into virtual webinars. Marketers should be connecting with customers virtually to let them know how you are supporting them.  

4. Adapt your strategy to your customers’ changing digital behaviour

During the quarantine, desktop usage has increased. Conversely, the rise of remote work conditions and people being less on-the-go has caused mobile search traffic to decline by nearly 25%. We’ve all become accustomed to a mobile-first world, but given the predominance of desktop, it’s especially important to ensure all search ads and landing pages are optimized for both mobile and desktop.

Move fast 

This pandemic has caused so much of what used to be normal out of the window. Whereas before, marketers might have used a multiphase process for developing campaigns that involved planning and back-and-forth and feedback, now they have to act fast to keep up with the rapidly changing world. Marketers need to craft campaigns that are affordable, cost-effective and agile – and that means paid search.  

As marketing and advertising professionals, we’re all trying to figure this out together as we go. There is no roadmap or rules, but there’s no doubt that staying flexible and using this time to connect with customers is a smart strategy.

 Brianna Desmet is Media specialist at digital and demand gen agency, R2i.

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Effective mobile advertising strategies for 2020

April 22, 2020 No Comments

30-second summary:

  • With the entire global COVID-19 pandemic that has brought the world to its feet and forced everyone inside their homes, mobile marketing is going to take a very different turn.
  • As per earlier estimates, mobile advertising was going to make up for a whopping 75% of all digital ad spending by 2022.
  • Considering the new alterations, the best thing to do would be to understand the fabric of it and work to implement mobile advertising strategies for your own business.
  • Know more on how to establish and polish your mobile marketing strategies to effectively target communication, deliver optimum effectiveness, capture your audience, and deliver your business goals.

Mobile advertising has been a game-changer for quite some years now. In 2017, when mobile advertising first surpassed desktop advertising, no one knew the bounds of its potential. It won’t be an exaggeration to mention that 2020 is going to be a major year for mobile advertising in all terms. With the entire global COVID-19 pandemic that has brought the world to its feet and forced everyone inside their homes, mobile marketing is going to take a very different turn.

As per earlier estimates, it was noteworthy to mention that mobile advertising was going to make up for a whopping 75% of all digital ad spending by 2022. Now that figure is going to see an alteration. Keeping in mind these figures, the best thing to do would be to understand the fabric of it and work to implement mobile advertising strategies for your own business.

The Wall Street Journal also talked about the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in alliance with national and state governments in the US, will be using the data collected by advertisers through social platforms, such as Facebook. This is being done in the wake of tracking the movement of Americans within the areas of “geographical interest”.

Now talking of core mobile advertising, we know that it is more important than ever to any business or brand, it is important to understand the essence of it and have a grasp of its core ideals. It is important because awareness around the subject matter will ensure that your mobile advertising campaign is a success in generating bigger brand awareness or driving sales, whichever your end goal is. With 60% of all social media activity happening on mobile devices, the potential for your audience is still untapped.

Mobile advertising explained

To simply put into words, mobile advertising is advertising meant for mobile devices. But in the present context, we are talking about wireless mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. For the power of personalization delivered by these devices, mobile advertising has reached high bars of success. It has provided brands, agencies, and marketers a unique way to connect with consumers beyond traditional means.

Mobile advertising is so powerful because of the nature of the targeted user device. It is very easy to choose the target audience and make sure that your message is being delivered to their devices which is unique to them, making way for precisely targeted communication. In this manner, mobile advertising delivers optimum effectiveness wherein probabilities of the response levels can be easily spiked.

stat showing time spent online and how it affects mobile advertising strategies

To elaborate, let’s take an example of interactive Ads. They are very effective when it comes to mobile advertising strategies because the user gets to truly interact with them. They can choose to call the business, check out directions, visit their Facebook page, or simply go to their website. The direction of conversion is multifaceted but one thing always leads to another, right?

Samsung really went to extra lengths for the promotion of its Galaxy S6 smartphone. They created a highly-personalized interactive Ad in collaboration with InMobi. They helped people experience the deliverable by displaying a “personalized real-time battery identification mobile ad unit,” on their smartphones.

They wanted to emphasize the fast-charging battery feature of their smartphone and here’s how they did it.

The result: 1.6% of the users ended up tapping on the “Tap to find more” button, while 1.1% of users clicked on the “Experience” CTA and an average of 20 seconds were spent on the interstitial ad.

In yet another successful mobile interactive advertising move, Pond’s went on to create the world’s first face detection augmented reality rich media mobile ad for the promotion of their new Acne 10-in-1 Solution. Through this Ad, the beauty and health brand provided a unique experience to the target audience. All they had to do was use their front camera to track the various features of their face and automatically detect the acne-prone areas of their skin. This implementation of augmented reality experience brought about 29 seconds of average engagement from over 39,000 users.

Types of mobile advertising

  • Pinterest: Awareness campaigns, engagement campaigns, traffic campaigns
  • Facebook & Instagram: Images, videos, carousel ads, interstitial ads
  • LinkedIn: Display ads, Sponsored in-mail, sponsored content, text ads, dynamic ads
  • Twitter: Promoted accounts, trends, and tweets
  • Snapchat: Snap ads, sponsored and on-demand geo-filters, sponsored lenses

Effective mobile advertising strategies

If the above information somehow was not very convincing for you, let us tell you that the mobile advertising market is expected to exceed $ 200 billion globally. All substantial brands and businesses that want to reduce their cost of advertising but also ensure that their advertising reaps maximum leads and conversions are relying on effective mobile advertising strategies. However, the audience isn’t very willing to view ads on their mobile devices and they use a plethora of ad-blocking services on their smartphones. Checking out ExpressVPN, CyberGhost, NordVPN review and other reviews for other reliable services to ensure that they are not beings served with ads. Hence, it is important to draw them in with relevant ads that can successfully engage them. Hence. here are some of the most effective mobile Ad strategies:

  • Customization of ads for the target audience: One of the most basic yet the most effective strategies for mobile advertising is the customization of ads for the target audience. We are talking of highly-customized ads for devices because each user is unique to their smartphones. To ensure an increase in mobile conversions, targeted ad customization is crucial. Dynamic Creative Optimization (DCO) lets you do just that. With DCO, one can easily create multiple versions of an Ad, specifically targeting them for the targeted audience. Based on variables such as gender, age, socioeconomic status, Geo-location, type of the device being used, etc., DCO will help you get the task done.
  • Mobile-preferred ads: In 2020, people are spending all of their time indoors and even working from home. Hence, by the expectation, people are spending more time online actively engaging with news and video content. So, marketers at the moment have reduced the number of brand-heavy advertising campaigns. Hence, the trend. If you really want to tap your audience for ensured conversion, mobile-preferred Ads are your way out. These Ads are aimed at users searching from their mobile phones. So, you can try sending users to your mobile landing page and telling them in advance that the URL is mobile-friendly. Mobile-preferred Ads are about giving away offers that are accessible via a mobile device and not otherwise.
  • Ecommerce mobile ads: Mobile advertising is highly effective for eCommerce brands and similar brands. People want to be seamless and quick in their online shopping. Even Google shopping campaigns prioritize shopping Ads and display them on the top of the mobile results page. So, use this to your advantage and create great eCommerce mobile Ads that allow users to absorb maximum information and arrive on a purchase decision.
  • Use ad extensions: Using ad extensions is not just a great way to get an edge on the competition but are also very helpful in increasing an ad’s CTR. They also contribute to the quality score and help increase ad rank and click-through rate. They let you have more space on the search results page if your ad qualifies. So, make sure that you use the relevant ones such as Location extensions, Sitelink extensions, Call and message extensions, App extensions, Price extensions, Seller rating extensions, etc.
  • Enable calling = Cheap conversions: A lot of marketers do not realize the relevance and importance of calling when it comes to seeking affordable and cheap conversions. By enabling calling, you are able to minimize the barriers for your potential customers to call your business. Hence, by including your business phone number on the ad, you make it easy for your target audience to call you instantly and eventually cut down on the cost of conversion.
  • Mobile ad gamification: Ever came across game ads that let you actually play the game for a span of 15-20 seconds to help you experience the true game? Well, they are really engaging and are capable of driving solid conversions. So, you can implement ad gamification to enrich your ads and make them more effective.
  • Incentivize your ads: For the love of incentives, how about you implement the incentivization of your Ads? We are talking about anything which falls in the range of discount, free shipping, or a voucher. For example, you can simply offer an X% discount for signing up for your newsletter. However, just make sure that your users are able to claim the incentive seamlessly and not navigate to many pages and make many clicks in order to redeem the incentive.

How to rightfully implement mobile advertising strategies in 2020?

Here are a few things you need to ensure if you want to rightfully reap the benefits of mobile advertising strategies:

  1. It is important to identify the right target audience that would be interested in mobile ads. Make sure that your Ads are relevant to the device users that they are being shown to
  2. It is important to ensure that your ad is just not for the promotion of your offering but it should genuinely aim to solve the target audience’s problems.
  3. Keep your ads lightweight so that they can easily load on the mobile devices of your users.
  4. Employ video content in your ads because they have a higher engagement percentage.
  5. Capturing the emotions of your audience with your ads is a great strategy if rightly implemented.

Conclusion

Advertisers and marketers have definitely come a long way in terms of how they exploit the prowess of advertising strategies to their advantage. This is a period of radical change, consumer behaviour is experiencing a huge shift. With the mammoth increase in online traffic and people looking to consume digital news and engross in gaming and streaming content, you have to come up with a strategy.

In this approach, shifting the focus from desktop to mobile advertising is a primary step because the present and the future is mobile. So, make sure that you follow suit and ensure that you are tapping the potential of this move and driving maximum conversions for your business.

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John Borthwick & Matt Hartman of betaworks discuss coronavirus adaptation strategies

March 28, 2020 No Comments

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of hopping on Zoom with betaworks’ John Borthwick and Matt Hartman to discuss the tech world’s adaptation to this new locked-down world, the future of new media and answer questions from the audience.

We discussed whether new media companies can raise capital right now, and touched on emerging trends around audio, voice, AR, live events, travel-related companies and many other topics.

It was a delight, and I’m excited to do more of these in the future.

For those of you who missed the Zoom, here’s a rundown of what we discussed (audio embed below).


Startups – TechCrunch


Display and search advertising: Top three strategies to expand your audience across channels

February 24, 2020 No Comments

Omnichannel advertising can be complicated. Digital marketers today have an unlimited number of tools at their disposal to get their message in front of the right audience through search advertising and others. While your channels or tactics may change, the goal of all marketers remains the same – to grow your brand and build your business.

But how do you know which channel or channels to use to achieve these goals? Many marketers with smaller advertising budgets start with paid search as the first channel to target, because of the simplicity of setting up a PPC campaign in Google Ads. There are no creative assets or media buyer required, and no fancy technology to learn or understand. Search also has advanced targeting abilities, offering companies the chance to get in front of in-market shoppers the minute they start their search. And the results of search campaigns are quantifiable, with insights into exactly which terms are resonating most.

Programmatic display advertising, on the other hand, can be a bit more difficult for some marketers to get started with. This channel has traditionally been considered best for brand awareness campaigns, as display ads can appear virtually anywhere your potential customers are online. Taking advantage of display requires either a direct relationship with a demand-side platform, or DSP, or a relationship with an agency to manage the campaigns on your behalf.

But choosing the right mix of channels for your advertising campaign doesn’t need to be an all or nothing affair. In fact, combining display and search together can have a positive impact on your return on ad spend (ROAS).

Here are three strategies to effectively combine search and display advertising for maximum results:

1. Cast a wide net

If you’re looking to find more new customers and don’t have a ton of traffic on your existing site or searching for keywords you’re targeting with search, the first step is getting more site visitors. This is where programmatic display advertising comes in handy — it offers a scale that paid search campaigns can’t, at a better price point. If you have a big promotion coming up in a few months, it’s a good idea to increase spending on brand awareness tactics well in advance, in order to have larger retargeting and lookalike pools ready to go when your promotion is ready to launch. So start by casting a wide net with display, and then continue to adjust and refine your targeting parameters as time goes by to optimize performance and find your next best customer.

2. Retargeting

Once you have brought all these new visitors to your site, it’s time to introduce cross-platform retargeting. For example, if you are running a paid search campaign for sneakers and roughly only 13% of this paid search traffic becomes a paying customer, that leaves another 87% of the audience you already paid for who abandoned the site without ever converting. Now that they have already visited your site, you can use retargeting to show them a new series of messages in the hopes of bringing them back to continue further down the sales funnel. Your specific retargeting tactics can be simple or sophisticated, but the bottom line is that they will help keep the conversation going with the visitors most likely to convert down the road.

3. Contextual targeting

If you have already identified your best-performing keywords from your search campaigns, you can use this same keyword list to add contextual targeting to your programmatic campaign. While this strategy doesn’t directly link the two channels, it does allow you to further refine your audience targets. For example, if “athletic shoes” is something that a lot of people are searching for and is driving people to your site, you could create an “athletic” contextual segment to target with display advertising.

Each of these tactics are a great way to build awareness for your brand and products right when your prospects are actively shopping, and a great way to complement ongoing search activity. If you already rely heavily on paid search for a large part of your advertising, consider adding display, along with some targeting strategies to increase the efficiency of your campaigns and decrease your cost per acquisition.

Jason Wulfsohn is Co-Founder and COO of AUDIENCEX, a programmatic advertising and trading desk.

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Seven content marketing strategies you should try [With examples]

December 22, 2019 No Comments

Digital marketing is racing ahead at such a pace that it isn’t easy to create content marketing strategies that are completely reliable. These are some of the best marketing strategies that have worked for other marketers and brands and could inspire your team’s brainstorming.

There are numerous brands that have adopted diverse content marketing strategies to their benefit. How and why were these brands successful and how can you adopt their content marketing strategies?

We look at seven content marketing strategies you can try, along with examples of brands that successfully executed those strategies.

1. Personalize your content marketing

This is a particularly difficult pill to swallow, but brands need to accept that internet users are tired of being sold to. People are using the internet to be educated, entertained, and to read the news. 

When they are scrolling through their social media feeds, they do not want to see posts announcing the latest product from your company.

But you have products and services to sell. If people don’t want to be sold to, how are you meant to sell your stock?

According to tech trends in 2019, customer loyalty is a driving force for businesses, more so than obtaining new customers.

Your content marketing strategies need to go beyond selling your product. Instead, you should endeavor to place your product or service as something that adds value to your customer’s life.

You can do this by personalizing the way users experience your marketing. Offer tips, tricks, how-to guides, and DIY tutorials that would benefit your target audience.

And don’t include vague salutations in your brand emails—address your emails to your customers by name.

Personalizing your content marketing allows you to actively create a connection between your brand and your customers.

Example: Netflix

Netflix is all about personalization—the streaming service studies its customers and caters to their every need. 

The site is extremely data-driven, and it has greatly benefited the way that they can personalize the user experience.

Every time a user watches something, or stops watching it, adds something to their Watchlist, likes or dislikes a product, and even when they pause their viewing activity, Netflix takes note.

Of course, the Netflix engine is huge and has been fine-tuned over the years, but their system is nothing if not aspirational.

To make your content marketing stand out from the crowd, you need to actively mine the data you collect from your customers to ensure that you give them the most personalized experience possible.

2. Guest blogging

Most brands host a blog on their website—blogs are great for SEO and to generate traffic to your website.

Creating content for these blogs usually falls in the purview of content marketers within the team. But their expertise is often limited to the realm of their specific workplace.

This is why guest blogging is now becoming a popular aspect of content marketing. 

Brands are reaching out to influencers, experts, and writing professionals for their advice, tips, and experiences in a chosen field.

On the flip side, brands are also asking their own marketers to guest blog for other sites.

Not only is this a great way to build connections between like-minded brands, but brands get to refresh the perspective on their blog, and place themselves as thought-leaders online.

Example: Moz

Source: Moz

One of the foremost voices in digital marketing, Moz, the SEO software website, has built its brand with the help of guest blogging.

Moz’s blog is regularly updated with posts from its in-house experts as well as digital marketing experts from fellow marketing companies and experts.

Take a leaf out of Moz’s guest posting handbook and open your blog to guest posters who can write how-to guides and case studies. 

And offer your marketers’ services for the same to spread your brand name and value across the digital realm.

3. Show products and services in use

We have already established that people on the internet do not want to be sold to. While personalizing your content for them is one way to reach the most stubborn of users, there is also another method.

Tailor your content marketing strategy towards showing potential customers what they are missing out on by not purchasing your product or service.

The best way to do this is by showing your products in use—on your website, social media, and email marketing.

When you create landing pages and product pages, don’t use passive images of your products on their own—show how a person would use that product.

This is a tricky proposition for services—there is nothing concrete to show. What you can do is show happy customers after they have used your service. 

Include a testimonial or two, alongside a picture of the customer to make the endeavor more personable.

Example: Nike

Nike is an internationally-renowned sportswear brand and they have had years to perfect their content marketing devices. 

This is exactly why marketers should be studying Nike’s content marketing strategies to see what works—chiefly how they show their products in use.

Nike leverages the storytelling aspect of its brand, going beyond what its products can do for their customers. 

In essence, Nike doesn’t just show its products in use—it shows how aspirational its products and lifestyle can be for customers.

4. Get behind a social cause

Championing a social cause, or fighting against social evil, are daunting prospects for brands, which is why so many avoid dabbling in this area. Everyone remembers Pepsi’s debacle from 2017, after all.

However, choosing a social cause to get behind can have significant benefits for brands. 

The most vocal generations on social media—millennials and Generation Z—are socially and politically active.

They are more likely to align themselves with a brand that stands against a social evil, and they won’t hesitate to call out brands that fail to react appropriately to social issues.

If you want to tap into the younger generations of customers, taking a strong stand against a political issue can expand your customer base, and help you lobby to create real change.  

Example: Gillette

Early in 2019, Gillette made waves with a powerful ad calling out toxic masculinity. Not only did the YouTube video receive over 32 million views (to date) but they were loudly praised by activists and customers alike. 

The ad was timely, following in the wake of the worldwide #MeToo revolution. It could not have been an easy choice—a small group of men declared the ad, and the brand, ‘anti-men’, but for the most part, the reactions were positive.

Choosing a social issue to get behind won’t be easy—you don’t want to end up on the wrong side of history. 

Study your audience and your contemporaries to decide which is the best choice for your content marketing strategy, and then stick by your decision.  

5. Try new technologies

Marketing technologies are changing constantly. Your content marketing strategies need to acknowledge these changes and adapt accordingly.

Not so long ago, content marketing lived within the domain of blogging and social media. Now it’s moved into podcasts, vlogs, AI, VR, and AR.

Even within the social media spectrum, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are only some of the channels being used by brands. Snapchat and TikTok are fast catching up.

Your content marketing strategy needs to encompass these new technologies. This doesn’t mean you join the latest fad—it could die down before your campaign has taken off.

Assess the situation around you and examine your competitors to see what they are doing. Then think of ways to adopt the new technologies in ways that would benefit your customers.

Example: Toyota

In 2019, Toyota unveiled an app that allowed users to better understand their hybrid engine. 

The AR app worked by overlaying images of the car’s interiors on the product—the user could tap on an area to ‘see’ what the part looked like and how it worked.

This experience benefited customers who were unaccustomed to the hybrid model Toyota was displaying. Any questions were answered through the interactive experience.

Using new technologies can help you enhance the user experience and allay any concerns they may have about a new product or service.

6. User-generated content

Creating content on the go is no longer the best way to capitalize on digital marketing. If you want to produce a steady stream of high-quality content, you need to get creative and thrifty.

A number of brands have found the perfect alternative to creating steady content—leveraging user-generated content (UGC). 

Not only does UGC save content marketers the hassle of creating reams of content every day, but it also adds interactivity and personability to a brand’s content marketing strategy.

Often conducted as an Instagram or Facebook contest, UGC has shown excellent results for marketers.

People love seeing other people on social media—it humanizes a brand and provides evidence of how well-loved a brand is. It also makes for great shareable content.

Leveraging UGC will save your marketing team time and will help you expand your reach.

Example: Warby Parker

Warby Parker is a brand that sells glasses. One would assume their content wouldn’t be exciting but they have leveraged UGC to showcase their products and their customers.

They frequently repost videos and photos sent to them by happy customers. Their content acts as social proof for other customers and makes their social feed more diverse.

Involve your followers in your content by requesting pictures or videos of them using or unboxing your products, and using your services.

We have spoken about how UGC helps marketers save time and energy. And that isn’t the only method marketers can adopt—repurposing content has the same effect on marketers.

Instead of creating new kinds of content on a regular basis, examine your existing content and see how you can update or use it in another form—JumpFactor have a great article on optimizing old and new blog posts here.

There are numerous ways to repurpose content—for instance, you can turn a single blog into an infographic, several social media posts, vlogs, or a podcast.

Repurposing content is as limitless as your imagination, and will not only save you a great deal of time, but will boost your content’s reach beyond its original scope.

Example: Nifty

Buzzfeed’s Nifty repurposes articles as 10-12 minute videos. The site also creates shorter videos for its Instagram account and makes GIFs to share on its other social media.

For viewers who don’t regularly visit Nifty’s website, they can still come across their content on social media and YouTube. Their brand is ever-present on all channels because of the way it repurposes its content.

Conclusion

These seven content marketing strategies and examples will help marketers be more creative and efficient in the way they create their content and reach clients.

Ronita Mohan is a content marketer at the online infographic and design platform, Venngage.

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11 Proven PPC strategies for your ecommerce site

December 9, 2019 No Comments

This article is very critical if you have an ecommerce store. Ecommerce marketing, if not done properly, can lead to complications because there are just so many different things that you can do. The increasing competition makes it essential that you use advanced or latest strategies to stand out from your competitors.

Stat on ecommerce retail

Source: Statista

In this article, I’m going to discuss 11 PPC strategies which, if executed well, can surely boost your PPC campaigns.

1. Greet your customer

Send your customer a nice package that has a handwritten note. It has a coupon in it for a future purchase. It may have a referral card in there they can give to a friend, this is going to be a nice experience for the customer, and it is really going to give them a good sense of feeling towards your brand, and probably get them again for you.

If you are seeling on other channels like Amazon or Flipkart, you send those products with a care package, the coupon, and whatnot should recommend they come back to your branded website to make future purchases.

This will increase your profitability and also increases revenue and get your brand going on your own website, which is what you want to do. So take advantage of these care packages.

2. Optimize your product pages

Spend a considerable amount of time in optimizing your product pages. Optimizing your product pages also helps in SEO. Write a good product title. Add the keywords in the title tag that people are searching online.

Search the keywords that are relevant to your products, and add them in your description as well. Write good, unique, and relevant descriptions of your products. If you are not comfortable with SEO work, then you can contact a professional and reliable SEO services company to get your work done.

3. Update your product pages

Your product page should never look outdated. It works through the weekends and the holidays. Every time when someone visits your product page, they want your perfect sales pitch, so put some time into that.

Good product photography is also very important, ensure that the images of your product should be very clear, clean, and well optimized. Adding a product video can be very helpful, it not only increases the chances of sales but also adds value.

You should highlight the main benefits like fast shipping, free shipping, cash on delivery, and other such options. Also, get reviews of your products. Studies have shown that having a review section on your product page increases the conversion rate by 400%. Make sure that you have a review section on your page.

4. Optimize your product feed

You can optimize your product feed using the Google merchant center. You can use the Google merchant center to run Google shopping ads.

Make sure that you have good information in there with regards to your product title, description, keywords, those sort of things so that you are showing up when people are searching on Google shopping when you are running your ads. You don’t want to be not in the game when somebody is looking for your product because your product feed in not very well optimized.

5. Use a good shopping cart

There are mainly three types of shopping carts you should check these out if you are not already in these carts. Shopify, woo commerce, and big commerce. These three carts are really good for the SEO, design, and for paid search as well.

It has everything that you need to scale your business. It also has a support team to back you up when you need help. So make sure that you check out one of those carts if you don’t already have them.

6. Run Google shopping ads

It’s very popular people go to Google they’ll search something like black shoes, they’ll click the shopping tab, those are all ads, they’ll click the shopping tab, those are all ads. So if you want to be in that shopping tab, make sure that you are running Google shopping ads. So, invest in running product ads.

Optimize your product ads based on results. Use an ecommerce tracking set up, and you can see the revenue generated from each product, you can see your ROI – per product, and on your product ads. Turn off the ads that aren’t doing as well, the products that aren’t doing as well, and increases the budget on the products that are doing well.

7. Run dynamic targeting campaigns

A dynamic campaign feature is a new option for the multiple campaigns feature. With this, you can run different campaigns on the same website. The dynamic ad automatically organizes your website into groups that are customized to your products and services like “sports shoes”, “phones”, and “computers”. Select the category or groups that are relevant to your website.

So, if someone comes to your website and they look around, and they don’t do anything that night when they are on Facebook kind of looking through their feed all of a sudden, they will see an ad of your brand. This way retargeting dynamically can bring a lot more sales back to your business.

8. Optimize your shopping ads

You should optimize your shopping ads. Differentiate the types of ads you are using for ecommerce. Add negative keywords – this will be a list of keywords that are not relevant to your add.

9. Run PPC ads on Facebook and Instagram

Social media has huge channels today and they have a chunk of audience.

Stat on social media ad spending for PPC strategy success

Source: Invespcro.com

People are on Facebook all the time so if you target people on Facebook and targeting is so intense that you can get right in front of a person that would be perfect for your product.

You could use custom audiences, life events targeting, lookalike audience, and other such techniques. Check out this article to get a better idea of Facebook ad targeting.

10. Schema markup on your product pages

When someone searches on Google, right there on the Google search page before they even go to your website, they are going to see what Google calls product rich cards, which is going to show your product image and some information right there on the search page. This is going to give you an advantage over your competitors and make you a little more visible organically to people as they are searching for things like Google.

Use the schema markup testing tool. Search “schema markup tool” in Google and you’ll land on the site. Just enter your product page URL in there, and it’ll tell you if you have the proper schema markup or not. If not, it will show you some of the warnings and tips to improve the on how to make sure you add that.

The big carts like Shopify, Big-commerce, and Woo-commerce already provide a good schema markup.

11. Automate email marketing

It is very important, many ecommerce stores fall short because they spend a lot of money to get that customer to make the first purchase, but they don’t remarket people via email marketing and other channels to get them to come back and make future purchases. So with email marketing, it allows us an automated way to make that happen. Set an automated campaign for holidays. By this, you can also build product review content in an automated way.

Using automated email marketing can help to scale your business as well.

As mentioned, these are some great ways to get your PPC strategies to succeed provided you implement them correctly.

Feel free to share your PPC campaign experiences and tips in the comments.

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