Tag Archives: Internet Marketing

Social Media: a Free Lunch or the Thief of Time?

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You wouldn’t do your own books if maths isn’t your strong point or design your own website if you barely know your way around Microsoft Office, so why would you even attempt to manage all of your Social Media? And, as a business owner, you invariably lack the time and inclination anyway, right?

If you’re going to commit to Social Media then you need to truly commit because infrequent participation will not work; the immediacy of Social Media also dictates that your content should never really be more than three to five days old.

Yet, that Social Media is free remains one of the biggest misconceptions surrounding this form of marketing. The platform(s) you use might be but your messaging is not. Even if you are looking after all of your marketing internally the cost is still there in the form of your precious time. And, the more invested your business becomes in its Social Media presence, the more resources and time you need to devote.

Whether you outsource to a Social Media Manager or use somebody internal, the reality is that as a business you need a dedicated person to push all of these efforts. Regardless of how much time your business is spending on Social Media, make every moment count so that it doesn’t become the thief of your time.

Capturing email addresses the old-fashioned way!

Are you asking potential clients for their email addresses?

You would think that it is standard practice nowadays that most companies ask for your email address over your telephone number.

Email Marketing is still the fastest method and cheapest method of online marketing and communication, even above Social Media marketing. Done properly, Email Marketing will enable you to easily start to build a concise list of email addresses for free. You most probably pay for advertising your website and store so this can only be a bonus (Right?)

Even before that however, you should be asking all of your existing and potential prospects for their email addresses and the time and effort invested will result in an impressively quickly built profitable and responsive email list.

You may well experience resistance from some customers, who are bound to ask: Why do you want my email address?  Will I receive Spam? What’s in it for me? And other such questions.

Make it clear from the outset how they will benefit from disclosing their email address – employing vocabulary such as ‘Free Subscription’ ‘Special Offers’ ‘Exclusive’ ‘Club’ or ‘Customer Only Offers’, usually helps!

It’s also vital that everybody in your business who deals directly with customers knows follows this practice and is fully briefed on what you want them to say and ask your customers when requesting their email addresses. Do not take it for granted that they will all say it the same way.

There is always the option of a purchased email list however these are invariably expensive and out of date.  An incentive scheme is a far more effective way of motivation your staff and colleagues to collect email addresses. This will help to ensure that everybody is asking consistently and regularly.

Having enticed them to subscribe, you now have to continue to capture their interest and retain them! Send relevant and valuable information regularly to build anticipation, so that your Email Newsletter subscribers keep an eye out for your email. Keep it consistent and see how fast you can build a profitable and responsive email list and whichever method you choose, be it via offline or online sign-ups or both, make it as easy a process as possible for your customer.

A/B Split Testing – Does it Help Email Marketing – MailChimp Guest Post

Ever since we launched our automatic email optimizer, we’ve been tracking all this wonderful A/B testing data on our system.

We analyzed 1,720 A/B tested campaigns, sent to 6,226,331 inboxes (we only included campaigns sent to over 500 recipients).

Overall, we found that A/B split winners did better than non-tested campaigns. By how much?

Before we give you the exact numbers, test your email marketing aptitude and pick the winning subject line from these real life A/B email tests conducted by our customers:

Winning Subject Lines by Open Rate
Test Group “A” Test Group “B”
Don’t Forget Mom… Gifts Mom Will Love!
Protect Yourself From the Sun This Summer… The Best Sunscreen, Hats, Rash Guards and More…
[COMPANY]: March [COMPANY] Mail Spring Update from [COMPANY]
[COMPANY] March Newsletter March is National Crochet Month
[COMPANY]: France River Cruise & Golf – Last Call [COMPANY]: Last Call for France River Cruise & Golf
Computer Security Quarterly – Spring ’08 2007 Record Year For Data Breaches
Coupon Enclosed – Save on Printer Ink, Toner, Paper, Storage Media Now – HP, Xerox, Canon, Brother, Dell & More News & Discounts from [COMPANY] – Savings on Printer Supplies from HP, Xerox, Brother, Canon and More
[COMPANY] Easter Newsletter – Free Shipping [COMPANY] Easter Newsletter

Think you know which ones were the winners? They’re all the subject lines in the first (A) column. In general, we found that:

  • Subject lines with company names in them did better, and they did better when the company name was near the beginning of the subject line (perhaps it was the increased recognition factor)
  • Shorter subject lines seemed to work better than long subject lines (the difference in open rate was more noticeable when they differed by 30 characters)

How Much Better Are A/B Tested Email Campaigns?

We compared the email marketing stats of A/B testers against the average email marketing stats across all MailChimp customers.

Average open rate across all lists: 21.7%
Average open rate for winning A/B groups: 24.1%

Average click rate across all the lists: 4.7%
Average click rate for winning A/B groups: 5.5%

*We analyzed 1,720 A/B tested campaigns, sent to 6,226,331 inboxes (we filtered down to emails sent to over 500 recipients).

As you can see, those who take the time to A/B split test their email campaigns get better overall results than those who don’t. For some extremely large lists, those few percentage points can make a huge difference in eyeballs, clicks and conversions.

Email Marketing – Seven Savvy Sweeteners!

Newsletters are a quick, easy and FREE way to drive traffic back to your website and keep your customers and target audience returning regularly.

1. Communicate

Email newsletters are fast and inexpensive to create. So you can send them more regularly than paper ones. And email marketing puts you in customers’ inboxes more accurately than regular email. So you’ll avoid spam filters and be seen by more people. And you’ll stay top of mind with people who want to hear from you.

2. Targeted Messaging

Create different lists for different types of contacts based on their interests, etc. They are then more likely to respond and act on your email because it is more impactful.

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Tweet your way to Triumph with my Training!

Twitter TrainingCome along to my next Twitter Training session and see how it’s done at a fraction of the price you’d pay anywhere else!

Not sure if Twitter is right for your business? Check out these statistics:

1.  34% of marketers have generated leads using Twitter
2.  55% of us access Twitter via our mobiles
3.  There are over 100 million active Twitter users worldwide

You will learn how to:

  • Post messages of fewer than 140 characters using blog links, news, events,  etc. to reiterate that your business is an industry authority
  • Measure your Twitter success by analysing how followers engage with your content via free metrics to help you make best use of your time
  • Integrate Twitter with your website to display at-a-glance information to drive traffic
  • Create a bespoke background in your Twitter profile
  • Use Socialbro to explore your Twitter community and discover the best time of the day and week to tweet and real-time analytics to see who is using Twitter at the same time as you, etc.
  • Use lists to promote and track your industry and competitor activity
  • Use #Hashtags to make your Tweets more searchable
  • Find your Facebook friends on Twitter
  • Insights into what makes people Retweet (RT)
  • Decipher the main Twitter jargon
  • Use Linkedin to increase your Twitter presence and no. of followers
  • Use scheduling tools – which remember to post content even if you don’t!

Click here to Book your place receive a 10% Earlybird Discount if you do so by Tuesday 31 July!

Details: Tuesday 14 August 2012 – 2pm to 4pm: Basepoint Business Centre, Aviation Business Park, Enterprise Close, Christchurch BH23 6NX

Other Options:

  1. One-to-one Training – at your desk (or at here at my offices if you work 10+ miles from BH6 5AF)
  2. Remote Training – don’t live locally? Take advantage of my one-to-one Telephone & Video Training – contact Katherine for further details

Get LinkedIn to the right training session!

Book your place by Tuesday 31 July and receive a 10% Earlybird Discount!

LinkedIn is your interface to professionals who want to find out more about your company, job openings, culture, recommendations from their network on products/services, etc.

Need to create a Company Page or increase your activity but not sure where to start? Want to get the best out of LinkedIn, raise your profile, expand your network and ensure your company provides the most relevant, tailored messaging?

Come along to my next LinkedIn Training session and see how it’s done at a fraction of the price you’d pay anywhere else!

You will learn how to:

  • ‘Follow’ your favourite companies and receive automatic updates in your LinkedIn feed
  • Use the Follow button to help users discover who they know at your company
  • Add the LinkedIn plug-in to your website displaying at-a-glance information to drive traffic
  • Create a Company Page to increase engagement and ensure your company provides the most tailored and relevant messages
  • Create a custom URL for your public profile, e.g. http://www.linkedin.com/in/katherinehanson
  • Export your connections to a spreadsheet and add them to your Marketing list or Newsletter
  • Utilise LinkedIn recommendations – nothing beats word-of-mouth recommendation versus a testimonial from a stranger
  • Use LinkedIn Groups to promote and track your industry and competitor activity
  • Use the Careers Tab to shape job seekers’ understanding of your company
  • Utilise ‘Updates’ to build new connections and discover what people in your industry are sharing

Details: Tuesday 14 August 2012 – 2pm to 4pm: Basepoint Business Centre, Aviation Business Park, Enterprise Close, Christchurch BH23 6NX

 

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Other Options:

  1. One-to-one Training – at your desk (or at here at my offices if you work 10+ miles from BH6 5AF)
  2. Remote Training – don’t live locally? Take advantage of my one-to-one Telephone & Video Training – contact Katherine for further details

Social Media is not a Flash in the Pan

Despite the invention of Social Media as a platform for fun and interaction online, it has evolved into an integral marketing and business awareness tool.  And although to all intents and purposes still in its infancy, the growth rate of Social Media within the advertising market is both astounding and longevous.

Over the past eighteen months or so there have been Social Media acquisitions and mergers abound. Facebook purchased Instagram (pipping Twitter to the post), LinkedIn bought Slideshare, Oracle purchased Vitrue for $300 million quickly followed by Involver, Salesforce snapped up Buddy Media for $689 million and CNN were rumoured to be in talks with Mashable. The list goes on, so much so that previously unconvinced investors and brands are sitting up and taking notice of Social Media marketing, particularly since Facebook raised $16 billion, providing the company with a $104.2 billion market value and adding further kudos to the cause.

Although many businesses understand the importance of Social Media for engaging with customers and clients, they do not necessarily have the resources to dedicate to it or rather they perceive that they don’t.

With the level of diversification also occurring amongst the big Social Media networking players, spearheaded currently by Facebook’s testing of an online-banking system in partnership with Australia’s Commonwealth Bank, and the possible launch of a Job Search feature to rival LinkedIn’s, many large IT companies are increasingly investing in Social Media marketing companies.

Even many of the most technophobic businesses acknowledge that a Social Media presence is now essential, so those that are not asking why Social Media marketing companies are in such high demand should be. According to a report released today by Domo and CEO.com, “while the majority of Fortune 500 CEOs have yet to pick up the pace in their personal social media efforts, it seems those who do will be better equipped to successfully grow their companies”.