Short videos: The future of marketing communication

The general consensus for those who have millennial (and younger) children or colleagues is the preference of this generation for videos.

For those who are 30 and under, YouTube and Facebook videos are the main choices of entertainment and communication. It is imperative for any business or brand targeting this huge market (remember: 50 percent of Filipinos are under the age of 23), to plan a marketing communication strategy with videos at its core.

We asked John Labasug, formerly the broadcast and production head of Inquirer.net, to give us some tips on how brands can use videos to inform and entertain, while still imparting their key message.

1. Invest in learning the basics of creative and technical video production.
Businesses get better response through visual communication and audiences are more receptive to creative concepts. Video content is also considered to be an audience amplifier—expanding the business’ reach and motivating a call to action.
Hence, it has become essential to learn video production as part of the strategic approach to reach a target audience. It need not be expensive—there are several online video platforms that are made available at no cost. And everyone nowadays has a smartphone.

2. Originality, uniqueness and relevance are key.
Having fancy and expensive production equipment helps, but it is not a differentiating factor of the output. Learning the creative aspects first, will help anyone build engaging video content. And if coming up with your own ideas is too difficult, partnership and collaboration with content providers is another way. Many are open to producing for “exchange deals” and at minimal cost.

3. Find your niche.
Steer away from the conventional overselling techniques. Monitor current trends. Tell a story through your videos and establish an interesting lead. Video is really about exposing emotions through motion. Learning how to do this helps ensure that you have impactful and possibly viral, videos.

11 Strategies for Increasing Your Customers’ Lifetime Value

In order to substantially increase the value of each customer, your company can offer numerous coupon codes, provide incentives for buyers who refer friends to a business, create localized webpages, offer free trials, utilize email marketing, manage contests for customers and engage clients who regularly use numerous social media networks. You may also install a tool that allows customers to chat with helpful representatives, and you can add software that will suggest products for visitors, customize landing pages and show reviews that describe various products.

Shipping Products Efficiently

Once a customer selects an item, a company’s website should offer at least three shipping options, and when the business sends a customer’s package, the company can automatically send an email that contains the tracking number. Moreover, the company may install a tool that will provide an email once a shipment has been delivered.

Managing Contests

You should create contests that allow buyers to win prizes and numerous coupon codes, and when a customer earns a reward, you can send thousands of emails that mention the contest’s winners and the prizes that the customers received. These frequent contests may substantially boost the number of guests who visit your company’s website and the average amount of webpages that customers view. According to multiple reports, the availability of contests can also increase the number of visitors who share a website’s links on various social media networks.

Suggesting Products and Offering Reviews

While a marketer develops a landing page, the expert may integrate multiple testimonials into the webpage, and various reports have indicated that positive reviews can sometimes increase a site’s conversion rate by more than 55%. Once a customer evaluates descriptions of items that the company sells, a website should provide a list of products that have similar features. Furthermore, the site’s tools can market accessories that are related to items that a customer has purchased, and the list could indicate the number of points that are associated with each item.

Offering Short-Term Deals

 

In order to promote a sense of urgency, a business may provide exclusive discounts for less than five days, or a company could temporarily offer free products for customers who buy relatively expensive items. According to multiple reports, these techniques can tremendously increase a website’s conversion rates and boost the number of landing pages that customers view. Moreover, the strategies regularly prompt visitors to subscribe to newsletters because the guests would like to receive updates that describe new sales.

Creating the display image for the discounts is not easy. One should make the graphical representation of the offers with great research. As every other brand is offering discounts to increase traffic and sales to their website. To stand out from the crowd, we should consider doing in-depth analyses of the trends and placement of the words. Initially, you can make use of some general stock images to check the design and deployment of your content within the body. This would help you get an idea of how you can plan your final image for the offer should look like, plus the pictures would be free of cost. Hence, reducing the cost of the marketing campaign.

Coupon Codes for Buyers

If a customer places an order with a subtotal of more than $150, you should offer a discount of at least 10%, and you may also provide free shipping for individuals who buy products with a cumulative value of at least $100. Numerous reports have indicated that this strategy can increase a company’s revenue by more than 34%, and the technique may substantially augment the percentage of buyers who create excellent reviews, boost the average number of orders that clients place and increase the profit margin of each sale.

Saving Information

While a customer is placing an order, the buyer should be able to save shipping information and a list of products that interest the customer. Some websites feature tools that automatically save a catalog of products that a buyer has chosen. Once a customer makes a purchase, the individual should subscribe to a company’s newsletter. Consequently, the business can send emails that offer descriptions of newly released products and reports that are associated with the company’s niche.

Offering Points for Customers Who Make Numerous Purchases

 

When a client buys multiple items, you should offer a predetermined number of points for each sale. Once the buyer accumulates a specific amount of points, you can send a free product or offer a substantial discount. Various analyses have suggested that this technique increases the overall satisfaction of customers, boosts the number of products that some clients buy and augments the amount of landing pages that guests browse.

Providing Useful Surveys and Incentives for Customers Who Offer Feedback

Once a client has made a purchase, you can provide a relatively short survey, and a customer may evaluate the quality of the items, the design of the company’s website, the shipping options that the business offers, webpages that provide responses to frequently asked questions and the quality of the company’s customer service. Additionally, the business can send monthly surveys that analyze new products, modifications that could affect orders or contests.

Managing Returns Effectively

When a customer would like to return a product, the company should send a box and a shipping label to the client, and subsequently, a customer service representative can offer a list of products that could replace the defective item. When examining the sales of large corporations, numerous experts determined that easy returns can tremendously raise the number of purchases that a customer makes, increase the amount of positive reviews that buyers offer and boost the number of customers who refer friends to a business.

Using a Customer Relationship Management System

If you install a customer relationship management system, you may create a profile for each buyer, describe the types of products that a client regularly buys, evaluate the personal interests of customers and examine messages that a customer has sent to the business. The software program may also determine the number of orders that each customer has placed and the total revenue that a buyer has generated.

Interacting with Customers Who Use Multiple Social Media Networks

When a company manages social media profiles, the business can offer coupon codes to individuals who place comments on the webpages, and if a customer adds a question to a social media profile, the company’s marketers should respond within 12 hours. A business may also post many images that show satisfied customers and pictures that highlight the features of high-quality products. Furthermore, a company can add updates that evaluate exclusive deals, contests that the company is managing, programs that help charitable organizations, policies that are associated with returns and the availability of surveys that offer incentives.

The Link Between Direct Marketing And Brand Positioning

The development of electronic messaging and the internet has completely changed the game for direct marketing and introduced new tools and options to capture customers’ attention. At first, all this abundance of channels that allowed salespeople and marketers to reach their target audiences directly and deliver their pitch seemed like only the sky was the limit.

However, in time direct response marketing received some negative publicity due to the often unsolicited nature of certain promotional messages, and this led to establishing new regulations such as the Canadian Anti-Spam Regulation. Where does all this leave brand positioning and is there a link between these two concepts?

Selling Or Brand Building?

Direct response marketers claim that the purpose of any business, and subsequently the focus of all marketing efforts, should be selling and not brand building. In other words, according to them, a successful marketing strategy is the one that can boost revenue and increase profit, rather than the one that is brand-oriented.

On the other hand, ad agencies emphasise the power of branding and they insist that brand equity is the only way towards success. It should be said that direct marketing enjoys the benefit of being able to trigger a measurable action from customers, while it’s more complicated to measure the effects of your brand building efforts. As always, the truth lies somewhere in the middle, which means that the synergy of these two marketing approaches is what works in the long run.

The point is to take advantage of all the tools that you have at your disposal. Pushing sales without creating a recognisable brand identity is sustainable only for a short period of time. The same goes for polishing your brand while neglecting the importance of growing your revenue. Finally, the better positioning of your brand is, the more you will be able to sell.

The End Justifies The Means

A general definition of direct marketing describes it as a type of advertising that allows companies to communicate their messages directly to customers through direct mail, targeted television, email marketing, telemarketing, catalog distribution, websites, SMS, all kinds of ads, and social media.

Some of these methods are considered very intrusive and annoying, especially telemarketing and unsolicited cell phone messaging, and as much as they can be effective, they can also alienate your prospects and result in a damaged brand reputation. That’s why you need to find the best communication channel to reach your target audience. It’s worth mentioning that people are more likely to engage in an interaction with an established brand than with some unfamiliar company, which is why your brand building plays an important role and practically supports direct marketing.

A Matter Of Trust

When making a purchasing decision, consumers tend to select items by the brands they have heard of. If we take into consideration that almost 95% of purchasing decisions are made subconsciously, it’s clear that popular brands have more chances of winning this popularity competition. This, basically, means that your sales pitch will be more effective if it’s supported by strong brand equity. But the link between direct marketing and brand positioning doesn’t end here because one of the best methods of improving brand awareness and establishing customer loyalty is through the use of social media networks, which essentially belong to the direct marketing arsenal.

Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram should be integrated with other direct marketing methods for achieving the best result. That’s why websites feature those “follow us” links to social media handles. When we’re discussing social media, especially Facebook, as a direct marketing method, it’s important to stress that brands can now target their audiences based on all kinds of criteria, including age, relationship status, technology interest, or  even the type of mobile platform they use, connect with them, and offer the option of online shopping directly through their easy-to-use eCommerce Facebook stores. This way, direct marketing is combined with brand positioning which results in better brand visibility, while generating revenue.

Email Marketing Isn’t Dead

Not only is it alive and kicking, but it’s also one of the most cost-effective direct marketing strategies, as it can generate a 38% ROI, which is more than any other marketing strategy. The catch is, however, in creating compelling emails accompanied by killer subject lines if you don’t want your messages to end up in spam.

In order to convert your email campaign and align it with branding efforts, you should establish your brand’s voice and narrative. This means that you should use the same tone for your emails, and be consistent about the image that you want to create. The template you use for your emails is also important, so make sure to pick the appropriate colour scheme for your email campaigns, use the logo correctly, and be careful about the typeface consistency.

Even a seemingly unimportant element, such as your signature can make a big difference, so be very meticulous. Don’t forget that a branded landing page is also a must, and do your best to create it having customer experience in mind, as that’s a surefire way to boost your conversions.

Direct marketing and brand positioning are inseparable, and if you want either method to fulfill its promotional potential they should rely on each other.

Public relations inside your marketing mix(Difference between Public Relations and Marketing

What is the difference between public relations and marketing?

Answer: If you think of marketing as an umbrella, then PR is one of the tools that fall under the definition of marketing, along with social media, sales promotion, market research and advertising. Marketing is defined by Philip Kotler of Northwestern University as everything an organization does from the time it perceives the need for a product or service until it is in the hands of the ultimate consumer. That includes PR.

Good PR is essential for every small business. It is an inexpensive way for your business to get noticed, create an impression and be remembered by its customers and potential customers. It is one of the best tools for making a positive impression and projecting your brand’s values. While large companies may employ PR specialists to enhance their image, small firms take a more do-it-yourself approach using a few basic guidelines.

Determine your desired image. Unless you know the desired image you want to make with the public you cannot design an effective PR program. What are your differentiators? What is unique about your business about which a story can be created? Do you offer a more complete product line? Do you offer a complete gluten-free menu? Are you open after the theater, even in the off-season? Do you offer customer service above and beyond your competitors? Have you been in business longer and have more experience in a specific area of your specialty than your Cape competitors? Do you service the Cape and both islands? Are you more dependable in on-time, on-budget project completion than your competitors? These are the types of questions you need to consider when you are defining your public image.

Define your public. There is no way to develop an effective PR program if you have not defined your target audience or public in terms of location, demographics and interests. You must know where and how your public gets their information to know the right media to use to deliver your story and convey your message. Today you have both traditional media — the daily newspaper (Cape Cod Times), weekly papers, radio, TV, direct mail and digital media — Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn or Twitter. Local newspapers offer more than paid advertising to deliver your message. They look for local interest stories. They love small-business stories. Sean Driscoll’s Take 10 focuses on Cape-based small businesses, their history, challenges, and examples of outstanding customer engagement. Get to know the business writers and editors at the Times and other local papers to share your stories.

Focus on outcomes over activities. What action do you want to occur from your PR campaign that supports your marketing plan? What do you want your readers to see/hear/do? The PR messages you deliver must be aligned with your marketing or business objectives. You are the driver of the outcomes and one of the vehicles to reach those objectives is PR.

Be a storyteller. Craig Cincotta says having a story to engage customers to become part of your story is more important than telling your story “right now.” Telling a “half-baked” story does more harm than good. Take your time and develop the story at the right time to the right people vs. “doing something right now.”

Explore your local paper for opportunities for exposure. Share news of personnel changes, additions, promotions. Announce relocations or an expansion at existing locations. If you have been given an award, such as the Better Mousetrap Award from SCORE or a chamber of commerce recognition or industry award, promote it through traditional and digital media. Encourage media coverage of special events — CCYP’s Back to Business Bash, Nauset Disposal’s Trash Bash. But, don’t expect automatic coverage. You have to ask for it with enough lead time that editors can react and cover your event.

Work closely with your local chamber of commerce. If you don’t belong to your local chamber, join. If you are a member, become familiar with all the ways your chamber can be a conduit for your PR communications. Members of yours and other chambers are prime targets for your messages. You also might think about becoming a guest speaker at other organizations, such as retired men’s clubs, rotary clubs and newcomers organizations if you have an interesting story to tell. Examples are the Marconi Wireless Museum or the new Whydah Museum in Yarmouth.

Community events are another source of great PR. Interacting with the public is also a great way to deliver your message. Serve on local boards. They get to know you. They get to know your business and the values it represents. They become another conduit to communicate with your public.

Although this is all important, remember the No. 1 job of a small business owner is running a profitable business.

6 Reasons Businesses Need Social Media Marketing

In order for a business to grow quickly, they need to be able to reach a wide target audience as soon as possible. Without an active social media presence, your business is doomed to fail. Research shows nearly 2 in 3 adults use social media. By not tapping into the potential of social media, marketing yourself to potential leads and customers becomes a lot more cumbersome.

Here are 6 ways in which social media marketing can benefit a business.

Social Media Gives You a Wider Reach

With social media, it’s easy to market your services to a large population. And not only does social media allow you to reach out to more people; it even lets you determine the kind of audience to whom you wish to market yourself.

Using Social Media for Business Boosts Your Site’s SEO

Search engine crawlers know which pages are consistently earning traffic and which are just floating out there, forgotten and ignored. A killer content strategy for SEO is the most important part of earning top spots in search engine rankings, but driving traffic to your optimized pages will cause them to climb much faster in the search engine results pages (SERPs).

Social Media Marketing Is Easily Shareable Marketing

A user can easily share any marketing activity or advertisement that’s posted up on a social media website.

This means that once you’ve shared a post, people will eventually ensure that it gets to your target market; the people who will actually benefit from your business.

A Strong Social Media Presence Builds Brand Loyalty

A report published by Texas Tech University found that brands with active social media profiles have more loyal customers. It’s easy to imagine why: when you’re engaging and interacting on social media (not just tossing your posts out onto the web hoping someone will stumble upon them) you become less like a corporation and more like what you truly are, a unified group of people who share a vision.

Social Media Gives You the Ability to Quickly Respond to Customers

Once you’ve shared any content on social media, it’s easy to keep track of customer responses and feedback given by social media users.

Besides making the necessary changes as soon as possible, you can even respond to your customer’s queries and messages. This will help you engage with the audience better so they keep coming back for more.

Customers You Didn’t Know Existed Will Find (and buy from) you

In the process of marketing with Facebook, you’ll probably join a ton of groups related to your products, industry and customer base. By posting links in these groups, you’ll help influence customers to check out your site. Answering questions on Quora is another option.

These are just a few ways in which companies can use social media. Without a strong social media presence, it’s impossible to survive in today’s market.

Interested in building a social media presence for your business? Call/Whatsapp me now +2348161333171, email bright@gtextgroup.com.ng

 

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