- When writing a survey, clarify your objectives before you start writing questions—time spent writing a strategy is well worth it if it means you didn’t forget a vital question (or include an irrelevant one).
- Don’t get stuck in your old habits when writing surveys—keep trying new things.
- Phrase questions in a way to get the most specific and clear answers from your survey respondents. Get granular.
- When writing surveys, draw connections. How might one question relate to other areas of people’s lives?
- Fractl’s Creative Strategist shares five powerful ways and details on how you can create successful surveys.
In my (sometimes) humble opinion, well-written surveys can be a reliable and effective method of generating newsworthy content.
Surveys allow you to deeply explore personal beliefs and behaviors. They can be tweaked and tailored specifically for your goals, and they appeal to our seemingly universal need to care way too much about what other people think.
I’ve written a lot of surveys in my time at Fractl, and all that experience has taught me plenty of lessons. So, here are five tips that you can employ today to make your next survey a winner.
Tip #1: Embrace the opportunity of survey creation
As content creators, we get paid to be curious, and that’s awesome. Running a survey is a unique opportunity — don’t waste the chance to ask questions worth asking.
We take for granted that our respondents open up about their deep thoughts and personal experiences, maybe even ones they haven’t shared with anybody else. You can write better surveys by simply appreciating that.
Here’s how I like to think of it: Do you want to think up some questions and find out how basically all of society would answer them? If you asked that to just about anybody, I’ll bet they’d take you upon it.
The point is simple: It’s pretty freaking cool to find out how thousands of people think, feel, and behave.
When you’re engaged, your findings will be more engaging.
Tip #2: Draft a survey brief and actually use it
A well-developed campaign brief is the absolute most important part of any project. A survey brief provides structure and strategic direction for your survey. By immersing yourself in the topic, you’ll yield better, more insightful questions.
Let’s dive into each one of those elements a little further.
Here’s something I thought I’d never say: All of those English teachers were right. Every essay did need an outline, and so does every survey.
(I still don’t believe them that the green light over the river was a carefully crafted metaphor for something-or-other, but that’s a discussion for another article.)
Outlining your survey will give you a clear path to follow. This allows you to focus on the more interesting, nuanced aspects of your topic. Having structure, perhaps counterintuitively, actually makes it easier to improvise and take chances.
Clients aren’t paying us to write surveys because they know we enjoy it, they’re paying us because we achieve their goals.
Drafting a brief will help you clarify your objectives and strategize how to meet them. Referencing that brief throughout the process will keep your survey and your goals aligned.
For example, we often have the goal to build brand awareness for a client. We do this by earning media coverage through the content we create.
When we run surveys that serve as the foundation of our content, we have to consider what journalists (and their audiences) will find interesting. If we don’t keep this in mind, we won’t meet our goals.
Immersion in the topic
A brief isn’t just about planning and outlining; it’s about digging into the topic and sparking curiosity.
This allows you to get the obvious angles out of the way and tap into what’s really newsworthy: a novel, personal, unexpected, nuanced, and humanistic takes on a topic (no matter how common it may seem).
My writing process for a brief typically follows a simple formula:
- Research and contemplate the topic: Think about it while your boss sits next to you wondering why you’ve done nothing but stare at your computer for 10 minutes.
- Take as many notes as you can: In fact, takes notes as quickly and as incoherently (in my case) as possible. Brainstorm, ask open-ended questions, get lost in the rabbit hole, and get as many thoughts onto the page as possible.
- Go back into your notes and make sense of them: Condense them into a clear and ordered outline of the angles you intend to explore.
- Leave it and come back: Tweak a few things, give it a spit shine, and send it over to your boss or client for feedback.
By the time you get to your actual survey, you’ll have immersed yourself in the topic. You’ll also have a clear understanding of what you hope to achieve, and you’ll have a detailed, strategic plan.
Tip #3: Be specific when writing survey questions
Specificity doesn’t just ensure clarity and accuracy. It enables you to ask targeted, insightful questions.
“It’s not what you said, Dad, it’s how you said it.” – me, all the time
Choose your words — and your questions — carefully. Detailed, nuanced perspectives make topics more interesting, more relatable, and more newsworthy. Specificity is how you get that.
There are a lot of areas where you can employ specificity to write better surveys, but I’ll focus on the most important: How to ask your questions and set up potential answers.
Here’s an example: “How many times per week do you shower?”
If you’re me, the answer is “not enough, according to my wife,” but if you’re most people, that question could be interpreted in more than one way. Are you asking how many total showers a person takes in a week, or how many days out of the week that person showers? Are you asking about this week, last week, or whatever random week they might be thinking of?
Some better ways to ask this would be: “In a typical week, how many total showers do you take?” You could also ask more specific questions like, “What’s the longest amount of days that you’ve gone without a shower?” or “In your opinion, to what extent is it acceptable to skip a daily shower occasionally?”
When it comes to providing answer choices, I often aim for the option that will give me the most actionable, most specific data. You can’t unmix paint, so give yourself a good palette instead of a few pre-mixed colors. You can always bucket, convert, and manipulate your detailed data later.
For example: Don’t ask for age ranges. Ask for ages. Do you plan on using age ranges? Great, it’ll take you 10 seconds to make them later if you have each age. Income brackets? No. Why? Ask for income and create your income brackets later, after you’ve done all the interesting things (average, median, percentiles, and more…) that income brackets wouldn’t have let you do.
By phrasing your questions specifically and thinking about how you’ll use the answers, you’ll avoid confusion and being too vague. You’ll also be able to ask more targeted questions. Have you ever done X? Have you ever considered X (even if you haven’t done it)? Have a clear idea of why you’re including each question, and what specifically you hope to do with it.
Tip #4: Get personal
A survey is where the personal and the universal break even.
By tapping into the emotional, humanistic potential of your surveys, you can generate takeaways that truly resonate with a greater audience.
There are plenty of ways to write a newsworthy survey, but to me, surveys are the most interesting when they explore the human condition — when they reveal something about who we really are, why we do things, and how the world affects us.
So how do we do that? By opening up the clock and seeing what makes it tick.
Ask follow-up questions:
Don’t just ask for answers; ask about those answers. People told you that they do X? Great. How does that make them feel? Is there someone in their life who wishes they didn’t do X? How does that affect their relationships? How does X affect their health? Their life satisfaction? How do they feel about people who don’t do X?
Surveys are interesting because they tell us about ourselves. Personal takeaways are more unique and are more likely to resonate with the audience on an emotional level. What people do is interesting, but it’s not as interesting as the reasons why they do it, how it impacts their lives or the way that doing it makes them feel. Tip: If you’re getting really personal, you can make the question optional so people don’t feel uncomfortable having to answer.
Embrace nuance and ambivalence
Everything is complicated and (almost) nothing is black and white. Use your surveys to explore the underlying complexity behind people’s beliefs and behaviors. Measure ambivalence by asking respondents if they acknowledge any points that contradict their beliefs or if they ever second-guess or feel guilty about a behavior. Tap into the inherent nuance of most topics by asking questions about its underlying causes or hidden effects.
Let’s take student loan forgiveness, for example. Many people who support loan forgiveness can believe it’s unfair to some people. At the same time, plenty of those who oppose it might acknowledge that it would benefit people, but that other concerns are more important.
By exploring the layers of complexity, we give the topic a fair and detailed perspective, while also uncovering interesting, newsworthy takeaways.
Explore cause and effect. Ask yourself how the topic might impact other areas of people’s lives. Ask yourself how their perspectives on your topic might correlate to other beliefs and behaviors.
Draw connections between people’s perspectives on your topic and their behaviors: Is it making your life better or worse? What are you doing to deal with it? How has it impacted your relationships? What do you think is causing it? Do you think it’s good/bad? Do you think it’s important?
Ask questions that people haven’t asked yet. It’s really that simple. It’s not easy, but it’s simple.
Tip #5: Try new things
Do we all get stuck in our habits? Absolutely. Do rhetorical questions seem to be one of mine? Clearly. Is it important to break out of them? Not this time for me, apparently, but yes!
Try new things in your surveys and on your survey platform, and you might be surprised at how much you’re able to pull off.
Some helpful ideas
If you don’t know what to try, here are some ideas:
- Open a blank template on your survey platform and play around with it. Look at each feature as a tool and ask what you might be able to do with it. Find a question format that you haven’t used yet, and look for settings that you usually just scroll past.
- Tweak the settings. For example: Carry responses forward but ask people about the choices they didn’t select. Ask them why they didn’t select them, or how they feel about people who might’ve.
- Use your answers in a different way. For example: Count the number of selections each respondent made in a select-all question, then create groups based on those counts. Create new demographics using one (or several) of your questions, and break your other results down by those.
- Strategically divide your sample. For example: Split your respondents into two groups and ask them complementary questions. One group, for example, could report on their habits while the other group reports on their perceptions of those habits.
You may not move forward with every experiment, but it can certainly open your eyes to new ideas.
I do have to add the caveat that self-reported information has its limitations. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t explore fascinating subject matters and gain more insight into public perception and behavior.
Approach survey creation with curiosity, attention to detail, and a sense of experimentation, and your chances of creating compelling content will increase dramatically.
John Bernasconi is a Creative Strategist at Fractl. When he’s not probing anonymous survey respondents about their innermost feelings, you’ll probably find him out in the garage covered in sawdust or in the kitchen (still covered in sawdust).
The post Five quick and easy ways to make surveys more effective for content marketing appeared first on Search Engine Watch.
- If you are thinking about having a site designed or redesigned, it is important to understand the complex relationship between SEO and web design.
- While designers focus on the aesthetic look of a website, and SEOs focus on optimizing the site for search engine rankings, the desired result is the same – a site that gives visitors what they want and helps your business grow.
- SEO Expert at UENI, Javier Bello discusses how SEO and web design can work together to create a successful business and attract more visitors to your site.
Do you consider SEO and website design as two separate elements of your website? You shouldn’t. There is no point developing a slick website if nobody will be able to find the site online, and with over 1.2 billion websites on the internet, it can be hard for your website to stand out. To avoid having a website that is not ‘search engine friendly’, we spoke to SEO expert, Javier Bello at UENI, who outlines five ways SEO and Web Design can go together.
Research shows that mobile devices generate over half of global website traffic, so having a website that is mobile-friendly is essential to reach over half your audience. Google made mobile-friendliness a ranking factor in 2015, and mobile indexing was then introduced in 2017, which meant that Google predominantly uses the mobile version of the content for indexing and ranking.
Therefore, to reach a wider customer base and rank higher on Google, you should spend some extra time working on the mobile version of your site. Is your mobile site just as usable as the desktop version? Are your pictures placed in the same format? Is everything tagged the same way as it is on the desktop version? Understanding that mobile matters will make your SEO better and build your Google rapport.
2. Website speed
There is nothing that will make a visitor click off more quickly than a slow website. All your web pages should load instantly, otherwise, this can impact user experience and SEO performance. If you find that your website speed is lagging, chances are it could have something to do with your website design. Devote your time to optimizing images, removing unnecessary plugins, allowing browser caching, and so on. One study found that 88% of consumers are unlikely to return if they had a bad experience with your site, so it is crucial for your success that you have a high website speed.
3. User friendly
Everyone knows that content strategy is an essential part of SEO, but did you know that the presentation of it can affect your rankings too? Not only is user-friendly, intuitive design an underrated component of SEO, but it will ensure good user experience so that your customers do not click off your web page. Too many hyperlinks, text that is difficult to read against backgrounds, images that take too long to load, and pages with blocks of content in strange places are all examples of bad website design. This might erase the audience you have worked so hard to bring to your site. Treat Google like a regular customer and make it easy for consumers to take in your content, so they stay and click through your site.
4. Site maps
A sitemap is essentially a blueprint of your website that helps search engines find, crawl and index your website’s content. A good sitemap will allow search engine crawlers to more intelligently crawl your site, therefore improving Google rankings and bringing in more traffic. That is if your content is already well prepared and appealing to web users. To create a site map that makes sense, ensure that your design intuitively leads people to the right place and that your internal linking structure makes sense to you. This may sound like a lot of work, but effective SEO is a process and can be considered a technical art.
5. Fresh and engaging content
Without good content, it becomes difficult to create informative web pages or rank highly in search engines. Google loves sites that have a clear content structure, with easy to follow pages and keywords positioned strategically. Also, when existing content is updated it indicates to Google that your site is ‘alive’ and greater crawling frequency is achieved. Popular content included how-to posts, FAQs, and case studies. Use paragraphs, headings, and signal words to display your content nicely on your webpage, allowing for greater user experience. Lastly, if you display or link to related content on your site, consumers can click on another landing page from your site for more information, rather than looking elsewhere.
Javier Bello is an SEO expert at UENI.
- Many ecommerce stores struggle to boost conversions because 75% of people abandon the cart never to return.
- Speeding up your ecommerce conversions seems hard, but it isn’t. Using scarcity, urgency, and exclusivity to influence your potential customers into buying can significantly improve your conversions.
- Let’s have a look at five quick and lesser-known ways to speed up ecommerce conversions.
Fortunately, there are techniques to reduce cart abandonment and increase conversion rates. Let’s have a look at five quick and lesser-known ways to speed up ecommerce conversions.
1. Understand and fill the need gap – Scarcity, urgency, and exclusivity
Understanding scarcity, urgency, and exclusivity can be one of the best ways to influence your potential customers to make a purchase.
While the three terms are related to one another, the way they are implemented is different.
In scarcity, you inform customers that there are a limited number of items of a certain product left in the stock. And that you’re not sure when the product will be available next.
In urgency, you simply add a timer that says “order within the time limit to avail the offer”. Once the deadline is over, the customer won’t get additional benefits, such as a discount or free shipping.
Here are four ways to work around scarcity and urgency
- Let customers know that the product is exclusive and is manufactured on small batches so they might miss a unique item by not buying it right away.
- Highlight that the offer ends in a few hours/days.
- Let shoppers know how much time is left before they miss same-day shipping.
- Indicate how many people have bought the product (and are viewing it in real-time) to indicate that the item is in demand. This will make buyers feel a greater urgency to purchase before it gets sold out.
In exclusivity, you reward the customer if they make a purchase within a set timeline. Sephora, for instance, promises a free exclusive gift to customers on their birthday month. When the customer purchases something either online or in-store, they are entitled to receive a birthday gift from the brand.
2. Reduce price shock
Most of the people abandon carts during checkout because the extra costs, such as shipping and tax, are too high. To reduce cart abandonment and improve conversions, reduce price shock.
Is the shipping free? No. How much will it cost? Is there any tax associated with the purchase? Yes. How much will the customer have to pay?
Let your customers know all the other prices associated with the product upfront. Don’t just add these at the time of checkout. You will need to calculate the volumetric weight for each product to display an accurate shipping price. If you ship your products internationally, you will also need to know import fees for each country you’re exporting your products to.
You can reduce price shock by a couple of ways
- Avoid increasing the product’s price at the last moment, that is, during checkout.
- Highlight shipping costs and taxes on the products page. If you can’t calculate taxes or shipping fees up front, add a disclaimer stating “shipping and tax will be calculated during checkout”.
3. Allow guest checkout
More than 26% of shoppers don’t complete their purchase because the checkout process was too long or complicated.
Having people register on your site is great, but it can negatively impact your conversion rate. Sometimes all a customer wants is to place the order as soon as possible.
You will have their name and email address when they complete the transaction anyway.
Major ecommerce sites offer guest checkouts to streamline their checkout process.
Apart from allowing customers to purchase without an account, they have also added the option to “create an account” on the checkout page.
If you are sceptical about completely eliminating the need for the registration to complete the purchase, you can test the option for a few days to see how guest checkout impacts your conversions.
4. Follow up on abandoned carts
It is essential to follow up with customers who browsed products, added it to their cart, and left without completing the transaction. That way, you will be able to understand the reason for cart abandonment.
One of the best ways to follow up with potential customers is by sending emails to remind them that they have left something in their cart.
Around 45% of people open cart abandonment emails, 21% of them click on the link, and 50% of people end up buying something.
ThemeIsle, a sister site of CodeinWP, sent a series of three emails to users who abandoned their cart over a period of five days.
They changed the subject line every time and saw a surge in email clicks.
- After 60 minutes: Subject line “Forgot something? It looks like you have items in your cart”.
The result: 50% of emails were opened, out of which 21% received clicks.
- After 24 hours: Subject line “What’s that in your shopping cart?”
The result: 41% of emails were opened, out of which 3% received clicks.
- After 5 days: Subject line “Are you sure? One last reminder about the items in your cart (including a 10% welcome discount).”
- The result: 39% of emails were opened, out of which 8% received clicks.
When sending emails to potential customers, follow the best copywriting practices to increase the chances of conversion. Also, add the images of the products and offer incentives, such as a discount coupon or free shipping, to entice users into taking action.
GoDaddy sent me an email when I saved a domain in my cart but didn’t purchase it. The email had a promo code offering 30% off on anything new for a limited time to tempt me into purchasing a domain immediately.
5. Highlight Your Return Policy
Many ecommerce stores don’t highlight their return and refund policy, but you should. More than 50% of customers read the return policy before buying from a website.
Customers want assurance from ecommerce stores that if the product isn’t as they expected, then they would get their money back. So, ensure that your return policy is clear and concise. It helps in building trust with your potential customers.
There are two ways to highlight your return policy:
- Adding it on the product’s page.
- By creating a separate landing page that contains everything you would like your customers to know about the return policy.
It would be great if you can leverage both ways. There is a limit to what you can include on the product’s page, so people who want to know more about the policy can visit the landing page.
Speeding up your ecommerce conversions seems hard, but it isn’t. Using scarcity, urgency, and exclusivity to influence your potential customers into buying can significantly improve your conversions.
Allow prospects to checkout without having to create an account to streamline their buying process. Show all the price (shipping, tax, and others) right on the product’s page to reduce price shock. Follow up on abandoned carts through email and highlight your return policy to build trust and confidence with customers.
The post Five quick ways to speed up your ecommerce conversions appeared first on Search Engine Watch.
- With marketers and brands alike losing trust in traditional advertising, alternative promotional channels need to be used and the numbers stack up in favour of influencer marketing as the solution for product exposure.
- We’ll examine the concept of high powered influencers and case study successful influencer promotions.
- What is influencer marketing and why should your brand rely on it?
- To adequately take advantage of influencer marketing we’ll go through the best ways to partner with influencers and understudy partnerships that worked and why such collaborations succeeded.
How do you generate brand awareness and product exposure without traditional advertising? Influencers.
These days trust in advertising is the lowest it has ever been, and for this reason, you need to look beyond regular promotional methods.
Influencer marketing can foster goodwill towards your product. But more than that, high-powered influencers can boost traffic, engagement, and awareness.
Because of how tough it is to get product exposure, you’d want the satisfaction of achieving the feat all by yourself, right? Not just to prove people who had doubts about your ability wrong, but for that feeling of accomplishment that you succeeded alone. It’s truly an enticing thought most entrepreneurs can’t resist.
Dictating the game and calling the shots is great and all. But at certain stages of your business, you need a helping hand. Your reach has limits.
By connecting forces with people who have identical goals to yours, you gain their reach and create a symbiotic relationship for mutual growth and potential audience maximization. Your brand and product’s exposure is paramount, and by engaging, interacting and intriguing your target audience alongside individuals with similar ambitions, the possibilities are endless.
With that said, let’s proceed.
What are high powered influencers?
An influencer is someone who turns the heads of your target audience. A person with a social presence so powerful that they can put your product in front of thousands to millions of consumers.
A great example is Subaru’s #MeetAnOwner campaign that used influencers videos to promote its new Impreza with the objective to pull in millennial buyers. One of such videos was Dan Graham, a new YouTube influencer with over five million subscribers using a slip and slide to leap off a 500-foot cliff.
While there were no mentions of the facts and figures that make the car great. It simply focused on the emotional aspect of consumers, which was the thrill of adventure consumers would associate with the car as a result of the influencer promoting it.
Influencers majorly achieve such goals as Dan did via social media platforms, which is where they showcase their influence.
But you need to ensure that your chosen influencer is the right fit for your product or brand.
You may come across a person with millions of followers, but if their goals aren’t identical to yours – for example, using a hip hop artist to recommend your new software – a boost in engagement isn’t a possibility. Defining context is the most crucial aspect you can focus on when choosing an influencer, so ensure that’s the pillar of your decisions.
Why use an influencer?
1. Increase in credibility
Influencers increase your brand’s credibility, which naturally extends to your product. By collaborating with people who already have credibility in the industry, you boost your own.
Sun Peaks, a ski resort, experienced this. In order to raise awareness about their various winter attractions, they involved Instagram influencer and Canada’s leading adventure photographer Callum Snape.
With amazing Instagram stories, images and short Facebook videos he drove over 200,000 people to Sun Peaks landing pages. Which sparked a huge interest for Sun Peaks from their target audience.
The consumer’s conclusion was simple – “If Callum Snape loves it, then it’s got to be great. ”
2. Influencers add a new perspective
Do you know that feeling? The one where you write or talk about the same topic repeatedly, and at some point, you feel redundant.
Repeating the same thing you’ve always said, to relay the same information from a fresh perspective, and a different sound.
That’s tough, but if you bring in someone else to speak on the same subject, they’ll have something new to offer. People vary. Each person’s life choices and experiences give them a worldview different from yours, even if they’re in the same industry.
FIJI water knew this, so they teamed up with influencer Danielle Bernstein and her trainer Eric Johnson.
The idea was to expose their product to their target audience in a subtle way and from a fresh perspective.
Now, in the post-Bernstein promoted her own brand Bernstein but she reminded her followers about the importance of staying hydrated and included FIJI water bottles.
This took the attention of forced placements off FIJI water since the post was about promoting her brand. The result was that it appeared to the audience as a reflective recommendation to stay hydrated rather than a promotion of FIJI water.
With high powered influencers, you can present your product from a fresh perspective to your target audience consistently.
3. Influencers offer massive exposure
In the business world, it’s all about giving and receiving. You scratch my back I scratch yours. It’s a system that you can’t override because it’s powerful.
Think about it. Why would a guest blogger pen down a post on your page? It isn’t because they love your brand so much, they just want to help. All actions in business are for personal intentions. They do it to get access to a bigger audience. Yours.
And in exchange, they pull their audience to your doorstep, and it’s a win-win situation for everyone. With influencers, that’s what you achieve.
Tom’s of Maine, for instance, is a brand that makes toiletries using natural ingredients only. To build exposure for their products, they decided to have influencers compel their followers to make posts about Tom’s of Maine products for a chance to win a gift package.
The strategy initiated a snowball effect that got across to 4.4 million people in three months of the campaign.
Some high-powered influencers have followings in millions, and a single recommendation of your product can drive an unbelievable number of leads and conversions to your offer.
They have traffic, exposure, and influence, and you have the cash. So you make a trade, everyone’s happy.
How to find relevant, high powered influencers?
1. Google search for Instagram influencers
A simple Google search can reveal individuals influential in your niche on Instagram. Input a related keyword and pick the top posts. Find out who’s behind them, learn about them, and then reach out.
You can use the search keyword code: site: platform.com “k followers” niche.
This is such a great tool for locating influencers. All you need to do is enter your keyword or niche related phrase in the search.
For instance, if your product is a content marketing tool. Type in the keyword “content marketing”, and you’ll see a bunch of buzzing posts will pop up.
Look up the persons behind the posts. Check out their social media profiles and followership. If they match up with the influencer type you’re gunning for, reach out to them.
Best ways to partner with high powered influencers
1. Run a referral program
Remember when we mentioned that the business world is all about mutual benefits? Well, referral programs are a perfect demonstration of that principle.
During Airbnb’s expansion to Asia for example, a single influencer’s referrals resulted in 5000 signups and hundreds of bookings in the campaign’s first month.
Offer influencers a nice payout, discount or relevant product for them throwing you a few hundred thousand customers isn’t a bad idea. Influencers invested an immense amount of time and effort into gaining those followers and desire to receive rewards for it.
There are a bunch of tools for automating your referral program, you just need to set and forget. You can even find quality influencers via these tools as they reveal people that are part of your program and are driving the highest traffic to your brand.
A referral program offers influencers a solid incentive to link people to your brand. The importance of this is even though a top influencer had an excellent experience with your product, without an active nudge they’d most likely not reference your product. And you may never know that someone with such an influence loves your brand.
2. Gift them
Seen an influencer you like? Perhaps you’ve found that they have a similar passion and you’re convinced they’ll be all in with your brand or product.
By sending them a product gift, they can test out your product and create exposure by sharing it with their followers. It’d be a good approach to drop them a message before sending over your product to them, as they may not be willing to tell the world about your generosity as you think without a nudge.
Here’s a great example of what the influencer’s product exposure post would look like:
3. Freebies giveaways contest
The idea behind this is like giving gifts, but instead of giving your product to the blogger themselves with the aim of them promoting it, the blogger runs a contest with your product targeted at the audience.
It’s a lot more direct in terms of the market of approach. As the influencer’s audience fights for an opportunity to win your product, it spurs a desire to have your offer before they’ve even gotten it. That’s a priceless effect to have on potential customers.
Check this example out:
Keep in mind that this method works great with influencers who own a blog, as the stats show that 90% of bloggers love to engage their audience in contests. So it might be easier getting a blogger to agree to this method.
4. Run influencer events
There’s no greater way to empower and educate your Influencer about your product than to host an event that allows you to interact with them in-person.
Sure you can send the influencer a box of your products and request that they feature it in their subsequent post. But imagine the depth of insight and content they could come up with if you invited them to where you make the magic happen.
For example, if you run a makeup brand, you can invite beauty/makeup influencers to an event where you show them how everything comes together. You allow them to get their hands involved in the making procedures and walk them through the entire process.
This is what ecommerce mattress brand Casper did. They got in touch with various Canine influencers that had a combined following of 3.5 million dog lovers to promote their new product for dogs.
The influencers were invited to a lunch party in New York, with “pupperazzi”, a green carpet and lots of food. The results were phenomenal. Different positive perspectives of their product at a go and 3.5 million people reached with ease.
You may have to include travel expenses into your budget, depending on your brand’s location. But the result is giving the influencer the ability to produce brilliant imagery that represents everything good about your product.
It allows the influencer to communicate your product to the audience in the most elaborate way possible.
5. Social media posts
Instagram sits high on this approach and is an excellent place to locate influencers to partner with. But ensure that you find users that not only have large followings but engagements proportionate to their follower size. The danger signs should go off if you come across an account with 300,000 followers, but only 12 likes per post.
When you identify the best influencer for you, create a campaign that delivers multiple posts that appeal to various aspects of your target audience. With that approach, one post is bound to stick. You can ask them to try out your product and take a video or snapshot showing the features of your product.
6. Blogger review
If done right, your influencer’s blog posts can rank on the top search results. Blog posts are an excellent way to boost product exposure.
Partner with powerful influential bloggers known for their credibility and trustworthiness. You could send them a free product or pay them in exchange for crafting a blog post with an honest review of your offer.
For example, if a web user is searching for “golf gloves” on Google, your influencers post could show up on the search results and as they visit the page, you’ve got a limitless flow of potential leads.
Influencer marketing is powerful in driving product exposure. You just need to find the right influencers and build a solid relationship with them. Try out various methods, track your performance, and determine the right approach for your brand.
Raul Galera is the Partner Manager at ReferralCandy, an app that helps ecommerce stores run customer referral programs, boosting their word-of-mouth sales.
The post Five ways to get more product exposure with high powered influencers appeared first on Search Engine Watch.
- When you look at what all a CRM system does for you, it lines up perfectly with the goals of an effective SEO strategy. The two should go hand-in-hand, working together to make each other more successful.
- Right from initiating surveys to getting insights from customer data for hyper-targeted content creation, there’s a lot that a CRM can offer that will add value to your SEO strategy.
- Customer experience too is intricately linked to the heart of how SEO works. When people search for keywords or phrases, they’re trying to find answers to questions and other information to satisfy a need.
- Don’t underestimate the impact a CRM system can have on your SEO. Five ways your CRM can help you get better results with SEO.
The beauty and bane of SEO is that it’s a richly diverse topic. There are so many avenues to explore and angles to consider. In a previous article, we looked at how different inter-organizational collaborations can boost your SEO implementation and improve your results. Part of this article was dedicated to collaborations with customer relationship management (CRM) systems.
Although we touched on some of the benefits of CRM systems for SEO teams, it’s worth diving a bit deeper. When you look at what all a CRM system does for you, it lines up perfectly with the goals of an effective SEO strategy. The two should go hand-in-hand, working together to make each other more successful.
Here are five ways your CRM system can help you get better results with SEO.
1. Getting on the same page
When you’re using a CRM system, you have the opportunity to continuously learn from your customers. You can use this opportunity to find out more about their pain points, what they’re searching for, and what they’re purchasing. This information can then be passed over to the relevant part of your company to deal with it.
Through a CRM system, you can issue surveys, ask questions, and record information given by your existing customers and leads. With a more complete picture of customer data you can create localized content, adjust the timing of certain SEO campaigns to match buying habits, and highlight features of your products or services with keywords that address customer pain points.
Here is what Daniel Liddle – SEO Growth Strategist at Green Park Content says,
“Getting that crucial customer behaviour information from CRM systems is the best way to refine the intent and behaviour of your leads. With more and more CRMs incorporating machine learning into their software such as Microsoft’s Dynamic365 and Salesforce, sentiment analysis and forecasting is becoming a lot easier to report on and also making that data actionable in order to drive sales. And, that’s the key point, there’s elements of information that’s more ‘nice to know’ but you really want to be looking and building on actionable data which a lot of software companies are driving towards doing this autonomously.”
2. Nurturing SEO leads
SEO gets people to your content, but what happens next? If you don’t get enough engagement on your pages or response from your calls to action (CTAs), even your SEO will suffer over time. You have to follow up with leads generated by your SEO efforts so that you can turn them from page visitors to conversions.
CRM can help you guide your overall SEO strategy. If you integrate SEO efforts into your CRM system, you’ll get an idea of whether your SEO is bringing the right types of people to your pages, how many conversions you’re generating, and what brought people there in the first place. All of this means better SEO with measurable results that matter to your bottom line. Traffic and page views are great, but it’s better to get less general traffic if that means more conversions.
3. Providing consistency
Using a CRM system, you can ensure that your whole organization is on the same page. No matter how small or large your operation is, consistency in marketing and customer-facing strategies matters. CRM helps you stay organized to present the same central message across all platforms.
The more you talk about a certain subject, the more your authority on the subject increases. Building authority on a topic is great for SEO, as your content will have an advantage in the rankings if your focus stays consistent. You’ll be able to build a stronger link profile, get more social media mentions, and post more relevant content that your audience loves.
Growing that authority requires company-wide efforts to produce a consistently good experience that’s relevant to your audience and fulfils their needs. CRM helps you stay on track and get everyone on board from different parts of the organization.
For instance, Mario Peshev, CEO of DevriX, relies on their in-house CRM tool for gathering case studies in a consistent manner:
“Our retainer contracts are long-term and we revise our accomplishments two to four times per year. Having our customer portfolio in one place enables us to review the progress to date, leverage a case study template, and prepare drafts for new PR opportunities or updating existing success stories delivered for our clients.”
4. SEO and customer experience
The entire point of a CRM system is to improve the customer experience your company offers, from the beginning of the sales funnel to after-sales services and everything in between. By improving your customer experience, you can also boost your SEO.
Customer experience is intricately linked to the heart of how SEO works. When people search for keywords or phrases, they’re trying to find answers to questions and other information to satisfy a need. If you know what your customers want and need, you can better tailor your content and keywords to address those needs.
To give a good customer experience you first have to know your customers. Take that information and apply it to SEO. Using the data about your existing customers, you can target your SEO efforts on a more realistic market of people that share the needs and wants of your existing customer base. Since you know these types of people already use your products or services, it’s a good idea to market to similar people as well.
Better, more targeted content means lower bounce rates, more organic traffic, and higher engagement with your CTA. Your SEO efforts can only benefit from relevant content that addresses what people really want to know.
5. Improving third-party reviews
Speaking of customer experience, SEO is also partially impacted by outside mentions of your company. Specifically, third-party review sites like Google My Business, Yelp, and Travel Advisor hold a lot of weight. If you are listed on these sites with a solid number of reviews (most of which are positive), you’ll do better in SEO than if you’re unlisted with fake reviews, no reviews, or poor reviews.
If you’re doing your CRM work right, you should end up with more satisfied customers. These are the guys who are going to be leaving the reviews for you. It’s a long-term strategy, but by focusing more on a great customer experience that leaves more people satisfied with what you provide, you will naturally end up with more positive reviews. You can even prompt people to leave reviews if you’re confident that more people will be happy rather than disappointed.
CRMs do a lot for your business if you use it right. If you’re using one already or considering adopting the use of one, think about the bigger picture of everything you can do with it. Don’t underestimate the impact a CRM system can have on your SEO. Get ahead of your competition in the ranking using every tool at your disposal.
We will take a look at what a conversion funnel is, the parts that it consists of, and the 7 best ways to optimize the conversion funnel to make more sales.
Read more at PPCHero.com
Social distancing requirements amid the COVID-19 pandemic may have canceled kids’ birthday parties, but parents are finding new ways to take the celebrations online. While video chat apps like Zoom, Google Hangouts or FaceTime are an option for gathering kids together in the virtual space, there’s still the challenge of what to do once there. A few companies are working to solve this challenge for parents who are looking for ideas to make their child’s birthday special in the time of COVID-19.
One business that’s been heavily impacted by government-mandated retail closures is Sky Zone, the indoor trampoline park that’s home to dozens of kids’ birthday parties per day. The company operates Sky Zone parks in more than 160 locations across the U.S. and Canada, mainly to franchisees, which have now temporarily closed due to the coronavirus outbreak.
To help give back to families who still want a party while staying at home, Sky Zone has shifted its current focus to virtual birthday parties. The move not only offers parents the benefit of the hassle-free party planning that a typical events space provides, it also gives Sky Zone a way to keep employees working during the business closures.
The party, however, is not a new source to replace the business’s lost revenue or a way to make payroll. Instead, Sky Zone is offering to host the party for free to parents for up to 10 guests. Parents will have the option to tip the party host at the end of the event to support Sky Zone team members.
To request a party, parents fill out an online form with their information, then wait to hear from the Sky Zone representative who will schedule the party and create a digital invitation with a link to join the party room. Parents forward the digital invite to their friends and family however they choose. Then, on the day of the event, everyone joins the virtual party, which is hosted via Zoom.
The party itself is a 20 to 25-minute experience with the party host leading the kids through games and activities to get kids moving, like Simon Says, Dance Battles, Trivia and even teaching the kids a TikTok dance. They’ll also lead the group in singing Happy Birthday to the Guest of Honor while parents bring in the cake.
The offering was first launched on March 26, 2020 and already Sky Zone has hosted 30 parties and has more than 100 others scheduled.
The benefit of this party over a DIY group chat is that the staff hosting the party are already used to working with kids. Plus, it’s an easy way for overworked parents to get the party handled when they don’t have time to organize more time-consuming events, like a drive-by birthday parade, in-home scavenger hunt or the other alternative birthday party options some parents have turned to in this time of crisis.
Another company venturing into the virtual party space is gaming platform Roblox .
Already a huge online hangout for kids in the pre-COVID-19 era, Roblox usage has been booming in recent weeks as kids stuck at home look for ways to socialize with both online and real-life friends in the virtual world. Today, Roblox claims more than 120 million monthly active users and is now No. 35 on App Annie’s 2020 ranking of the top 52 mobile game publishers by revenue.
The company says it was inspired by the stories of friends, family and classmates connecting on its platform during the pandemic, including those who were hosting in-game birthday parties.
COVID-19 didn’t stop these kids from having a fun birthday party with friends. They were playing Epic Minigames on #Roblox—a great example of the #metaverse in action! https://t.co/W8eNghlWIA @TypicalRBLX @lifehacker pic.twitter.com/n5G6wrEIYX
— Roblox Corp (@InsideRoblox) March 27, 2020
Together, with its developer community, Roblox on Friday launched the new “Play Together” game sort, which makes it easier for players to find those games where you socialize with others — like visiting a virtual shopping mall, going camping or riding virtual water slides, for example. The games in the Play Together game sort also offer VIP servers for 10 Robux (10 cents). That allow users to play with family, friends, classmates and others they choose in a private virtual space — like a virtual birthday party.
To create a VIP server, you first visit the individual game’s page on Roblox, then click on the “Servers” tab and then the button “Create VIP Server.” Give your server a name, then invite others using the link provided. (Note that this is opting you into a subscription, so you’ll need to cancel it after the party ends — unless you want to retain the option to have private playspaces like this going forward.)
If you can’t figure out this process, trust me that your child can show you the ropes here.
While Roblox is popular with both boys and girls alike, a private match on Fornite is an alternative for some parents. The majority of Fornite players (roughly 73%) are male, so this could be an option for non-coed parties, for instance.
For younger children and toddlers whose virtual party may only involve gathering together extended family — like grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins, for example — there’s Caribu.
The family-friendly video calling app helps little ones get over their awkwardness about chatting online by offering a variety of in-app activities. For birthday parties, Caribu’s paint and drawing feature could be a fun, mess-free activity. The app also includes other simple games like Tic-Tac-Toe, interactive word puzzles and word searches.
To help keep families connected during the COVID-19 pandemic, AT&T is sponsoring 60 days of free access and unlimited use of the Caribu app, which offers in-app subscriptions for its full content library, which includes kids’ e-books.
For tweens and teens, the group video chat app Houseparty is another option that works across mobile and desktop.
Houseparty has also seen significant growth due to coronavirus-related lockdowns and home quarantines, particularly in Europe. During the week of March 21, Houseparty downloads surged at 423 times the average weekly number of downloads in Q4 2019.
What makes Houseparty an option for a virtual party experience is that it’s not just another way to group chat — friends can play online games in the chat, including Heads Up!, Trivia, Chips and Guac and Quick Draw. These are free to play, though there is an option to purchase more decks through in-app purchases for some games.
Evites with built-in video chat
Even if you do choose to go the DIY route to host a simple FaceTime, Google Hangouts, Zoom or Skype video chat, there are ways to make the invite more special than just a text. For example, the digital invitations service Evite has updated its app and website to now allow party hosts to add a video chat link to their personalized invite.
The company is also beta testing its own Evite video chat, which is a more integrated option that allows up to eight guests to be able to join from a tab within the invite.
Hobnob’s digital invites app has also updated to make it easier for friends to send invitations for online-only events through Zoom, Facebook Live and YouTube Live.
Personalized Zoom invites
This free online tool lets you customize your Zoom video call invite URL with a title, explanation, image and RSVP requirement. This latter RSVP feature means that only those you’ve specifically invited via email will be able to access the provided link and join.
While a Facebook Live stream may not have a party host like Sky Zone, or built-in options to play games like Caribu or Houseparty, it does offer an easy way to share a celebration happening at home with others. Though children won’t have their own Facebook account (hopefully!), parents can send out invites to the parents of the child’s friends or family members through a Facebook Group invite, for instance, or by posting a message about the virtual party on their own profile. Participants can then watch the stream together as the child opens gifts left on the porch (and wiped down) and celebrates at home with family.
While technology can help to facilitate these virtual events, parents can take extra steps to make a virtual party special. Some local businesses that used to send characters — like superheroes or Disney princesses — to kids’ birthday parties are now offering to record video messages or even join a virtual party the parent is hosting. Neighbors and friends can decorate the yard or leave chalk messages. Surprise balloon drops, car parades, scavenger hunts and other activities can make the party memorable for other reasons besides being the child’s first quarantine birthday.
The events of the last few weeks have had a dramatic effect on millions of people’s lives. Uncertainty over health, childcare, work, food and the wellbeing of loved ones has dominated all of our thinking over the past few days.
Not only has it changed the way we’re shopping and interacting with others, an expert at online search specialist Epiphany, Paul Norris, has looked at how it has impacted what users are turning to the internet for and advises how businesses can adapt their search strategy during this tricky time.
The Prime Minister’s speech on 13th March 2020 served as a catalyst for many to search for “working from home essentials” with searches such as computer chairs increasing by 185%.
As a nation, we also considered our options for emergency deliveries, including “wine delivery” services, which nearly tripled in just one week.
As people’s searches change to reflect new (increasingly home-based and socially distant) situations, it’s important that marketers adapt to the shifts in search behavior.
Here are a few ways to navigate the next few weeks and to prepare for when we emerge from the current situation:
1. Identify and capitalize on emerging trends
Monitor your search query reports closely – look for increased use of convenience and supply modifiers as availability and fulfillment is valued more. Searches containing “near me” have started to fall as queries for “online” services have increased.
If your business offers quick deliveries (and can still fulfill them), ensure it’s prominent in messaging, listings and on-site. Searches for next and same-day delivery will only continue to grow.
2. Listen to your visitors – use your site search reports and Hotjar polls
Your on-site search function is an absolute gold mine in times like these – demand and behavioral changes from your visitors are picked up directly. Use the Site Search report in GA (found under “Behaviour” on the left-hand side) as a listening board.
Surface the most-searched-for products and services on relevant high traffic pages. Rethink, test and measure your carousels and other key product and service listing elements where relevant. Enabling Hotjar (or similar) polls can also enable you to get more specific insight.
3. Shift budget into investment channels
If you’re pulling back on sales activation because demand is dropping, look to move that budget and resource into a medium and longer-term activity that will pay dividends when demand picks up. With the previous points in mind, conduct a meta-data review and weave more highly valued services such as next day delivery into titles and descriptions. Has content taken a back seat? There are some definite benefits to content strategy, planning, and creation with the headspace you’re afforded when working from home.
4. Bypass dev queues and do what you can from your CMS
Prioritizing your activity in a busy dev queue can be difficult at the best of times. If dev time is booked up because the team is completely promo and sales activation focused, do what you can. Are you able to edit content and optimize existing pages in the CMS? Can you create new landing pages in your CMS without tech intervention? If so, now is the time to utilize those capabilities.
5. Maximize performance where demand is strong
Identify where demand remains strong (or has even picked up) and do what you can to capture and convert it. Your top landing pages and product reports are a good first port of call and can provide you with some quick wins. Segmenting and analyzing site performance by product/area/service (depending on your sector) can help you identify and capitalize on bigger emerging trends. If you’re a retailer, think about splitting out essential and non-essential products.
Paul Norris is Senior Strategist & Head of London Operations at Epiphany.
The post Search specialist shares five ways to adapt your search strategy in uncertain times appeared first on Search Engine Watch.
As we enter 2020, it’s time to leave behind old marketing strategies and adopt new ones. After all, there is a lot of innovation happening. From AI in customer service to influencers taking over social media, a lot has changed in the last year. Digital marketing campaigns now sprawl across different channels, tools, and processes.
While some strategies might remain partially the same, they will get a facelift in 2020. If you are looking to take your marketing to the next level in 2020, we’ve got some tips for you.
Here are some of the best ways to get more out of your marketing campaigns this year:
1. Create more video content
Videos have transformed the content marketing landscape. They have changed the way brands promote their products and create content. And video content is also becoming more popular. Wondering why?
Because people like watching videos.
In fact, 72% of people said that they would like to watch videos to learn about a product or service.
If you haven’t been using video content, you’re losing out on a lot of opportunities to grow your brand. With the evolution of social media platforms like Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook, the video content game has changed dramatically. Video content is a versatile tool to increase brand awareness and drive engagement.
So, what kind of videos can brands create for promotion?
There are many different options — educational videos, onboarding videos, meet-the-team videos, customer journey videos, event videos, and more.
Looking for inspiration?
Take a look at the Reebok video marketing campaign
They created a video for their #HonourYourDays campaign which shows a woman’s relationship with running in reverse mentioning that the average human life is about 25,915 days.
While it doesn’t directly promote their products, it does highlight the importance of fitness. It’s a great way to spread awareness without being too promotional.
2. Use chatbots to enhance customer experience
With the help of intelligent chatbots, you can also leverage customer data. These virtual assistants are capable of collecting data from customer interactions and giving you insights into how your brand can improve.
For example, if customers are complaining about a specific product, you can dive deep into the issue and understand the problem on a granular level.
Providing a great customer experience can help brands increase lead generation and revenue. What’s more, it can also help you improve your customer experience and lower your customer acquisition cost.
One of the biggest benefits of customer service chatbots is that they are available 24×7 and give quick responses to queries.
Chatbots are also great tools for helping customers keep track of their purchases.
Mastercard’s chatbot on Facebook Messenger
For example, Mastercard’s chatbot on Facebook Messenger allows its users to ask specific questions. On it, a user can ask how much they’ve spent on food or on Uber.
For each user, the answer is personalized based on their bank statement. Users can also send submit questions to ask for more information about a particular product.
Image via Mastercard
3. Focus on personalization
Most content marketers believe that when a prospect customer engages with their brand and makes a purchase, it’s a win.
But what’s next?
A customer journey starts right from when a target customer engages with your brand and it continues through conversion. But it also includes providing customer support and elevating their buyers’ journey to turn them into cheerleaders of your brand.
So, it is essential to reach out to your audience and provide valuable services that are not solely revenue-centric. 76% of consumers believe that it’s easy to switch to a different brand to find an experience that will match their expectations.
So, how can you provide a memorable experience to your customers?
That’s where personalization comes into play. Not only can it improve the customer experience you deliver, but it can also boost your sales.
Providing a personalized experience can significantly impact your relationships with your customers. So, how can you create a more personalized experience for your customers?
Tools like Google Analytics and Cortex can help you get insights into your audience’s behavior. By using that data, you can find out what kind of content your audience is looking for and then optimize your content creation strategy accordingly.
4. Leverage influencer marketing
Influencer marketing has grown to become a whopping five to ten billion-dollar industry. It has helped marketers reach their target audiences, generate brand awareness, get more leads, and boost sales.
Collaborating with social media influencers has become a great way for brands to promote their products and services. When an influencer endorses your brand or reviews your product, it can get you a lot of publicity.
Take a leaf from Daniel Wellington’s digital marketing strategy
To create buzz about their brand, they send their watches to multiple influencers. They encourage those influencers to create posts with the hashtag #DanielWellington to help promote their products.
Another example of great influencer marketing is Subaru’s #MeetAnOwner campaign
In this campaign, the company reached out to influencers from diverse backgrounds. One of the biggest influencers in their campaign was Devin Graham (@devinsupertramp) with over five million YouTube subscribers at the time. He is known for his daredevilry.
By partnering with Devin, Subaru was able to reach out to outdoor adventure junkies. Graham’s sponsored video with Subaru gained around 1.3 million views and 1.1k comments.
5. Automate your email marketing campaigns
About 73% of marketers consider email marketing to be crucial to their company’s success.
But it can be a time-consuming strategy. If you’re short on time, there is a way out – automate your email marketing campaigns. Not only can it help you save a ton of time, but it can also help you create more personalized content.
With this strategy, you can ensure that your content is delivered to your customers at the right times.
For instance, if a customer has abandoned their cart, you can send them a reminder to complete the transaction.
Here’s an example of how American technology company, FiftyThree, notifies their customers about abandoned carts with an appealing message.
Marketers often use these emails to encourage their customers to take another step or get closer to a purchase.
Emails also provide you with an opportunity to upsell your products.
For example, an email that includes a section containing products similar to a user’s previous purchases can trigger their engagement.
Email automation saves the time and efforts that are otherwise invested into following up with each action of a user. It also reduces the potential for errors such as hitting the send button prematurely when the user might not be ready.
6. Build a community
Building a community around your brand will help you improve your brand awareness, drive higher engagement, and organically boost your SEO.
When users create and share content around your brand, you are likely to get noticed by search engines. Brand mentions, post shares, comments, and likes — all of these help your cause.
Further, having a community of followers also helps strengthen your branding.
When you share valuable content that helps your target audience or aligns with their interests, they tend to associate more with your brand and become loyal customers.
Some companies even have brand ambassadors who regularly create content for them in return for benefits such as free products, invites to product launches or other events.
A great example of a community is GoPro, an action camera company that has solidified its position in the market by building a strong community of sports enthusiasts, photographers, and adventurers across the world.
The brand builds personal relationships with their customers while maintaining a focus on its target audience of sports enthusiasts.
Videos, chatbots, influencer marketing, personalization, and more — there is a lot of innovation happening in the digital marketing space. Anyone, from big brands to mom-and-pop stores, can use these strategies to grow their business. What are you waiting for? It’s time to incorporate these strategies into your marketing plan for 2020.
Have you used any of these strategies before? Please share your experiences and insights in the comments section.
Shane Barker is a Digital Strategist, Brand and Influencer Consultant. He can be found on Twitter @shane_barker.
The post Six great ways to get more out of your digital marketing campaigns in 2020 appeared first on Search Engine Watch.