Posts Tagged ‘social marketing’

Apr 20
2011

vanilla coke facebook page screenshotMarketing on Facebook – Effectively Building and Using your Facebook Page
I recently attended a webinar put on by http://www.hubspot.com/ .  Have to say, they have some awesome webinars – very informative, particularly on social media marketing.  This webinar was called “How Marketers Succeed in a Social World“, speakers were Mike Volpe, VP of Marketing at Hubspot, and Victoria Ransom, Founder and CEO of Wildfire.  I want to focus on the specific tips Victoria gave for Facebook Fan Page marketing – she had great, tangible points.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably know that Facebook is the number one social network out to date.   1 in every 13 people on this earth has a Facebook profile.   Many credit its innovative ways of communication as an instrumental tool in galvanizing the recent international revolutions.   Of course, like anything else gaining extreme popularity, it has attracted the attention of businesses looking to use it as a marketing tool.

It is now as common (and as necessary) for businesses to have a Facebook page as it is to have a website.  In fact, it has the potential to become more common:

  • It’s free
  • It requires no web development knowledge
  • Similar to an email list, it keeps a steady connection between businesses and their “fans”
  • The beauty of social network is “in-bound marketing” – meaning your market comes to you.   This rapport is less invasive than traditional outbound marketing – for example, hoping your market will catch an ad or flyer you put out.

So to the nitty gritty! How can you use Facebook page to effectively help your marketing?

Victoria Ransom had some great tips:

Her philosophy is built on 3 pillars…

  • Grow
  • Enagage
  • Monetize

GROWgrow facebook

Facebook Ads

  • Spend Ad Money. At the end of the day, a significant portion of fans come through Facebook ads.  Facebook ads are very targeted based on users’ interests (their ad system is growing and is slowly but surely gaining ground from Google Adwords).  Do set aside a portion of your budget for this – the fans you gain can potentially yield an easy return.
  • Give your prospect a reason to click your ad. Rather than simply putting information about your business – promotions, incentives, and contests will give you a better click through rate.
  • Don’t drive people out of Facebook (to an external site). You’ll increase your bounce rate.  They came to Facebook to be on Facebook.  Lead them to a customized landing tab on your Facebook page.  Get them to “like” – establish that connection so you can market to them later.
  • Advertise to friends of Fans. Facebook allows you to do this, and it builds credibility if their friends like your page.
  • A/B test your ads. It’s important to test ads and keep them fresh.  If users see the same ad consistently, they are more likely to ignore it.

Promotions/Contests/Giveaways

  • Pages that employ incentives have twice as many fans as pages that don’t.
  • Keep contests simple.  If fans have to join a thousand things, click here, go there, etc, the amount of energy it’s forcing them to spend will make them quit!
  • Make it social by offering a prize for referrals – have fans bring fans!
  • Keep your audience relevant by offering prizes related to your industry.  For example, offering an iPad will definitely get all types of participants, but may not be fans that are interested in your clothing store, for example.

ENGAGEfacebook avatar with loudspeaker

  • Engagement begets more engagement. Just because you post something to your wall doesn’t mean your 1000 fans will see it.  Facebook has an algorithm that decides if your post will be “fed”.  A big factor is engagement with that post, so it’s important your posts get interaction.
  • Actually explicitly ask fans/friends to engage – Post “Like this!!!” or “Share This!”
  • Pose open-ended questions to get fans to answer. “What are you going to do for Earth Day?”
  • The quality of your post is more important than quantity of posts.  Posting 100 times a day could saturate your wall.  Choose quality posts over quantity.
  • Build a calendar of posts around events.  For example – post Christmas related questions and promotions around Christmas.

MONETIZEmoney on top of facebook

  • Make your buying process social.  Not only include a cart in your store, but offer coupons/prizes to facebook fans.

Jun 25
2010

A multimedia presence (i.e. such as TV, Radio, Magazine ads, etc.) has always been an imperative part of a complete marketing strategy. The Internet, in a way, has skyrocketed each of these forums to the next level. For video marketing, YouTube would be that rocket.

Whether you’re a small business or large corporation, YouTube videos/channels are as key of a component in having a comprehensive online marketing presence as having a main website or social media channels.

I’ll admit, when I first heard of YouTube, I was thinking to myself, “Ummm, not everyone can afford a video camera.” “How large are video files anyway?” “No one is going to go through the trouble of converting these gargantuan video files then uploading them.” “Why would someone want to display their videos for the world to see anyway?” Of course, my psychic intuition was horribly, utterly, and ignorantly wrong. :(

Your freedom to upload and share almost ANYTHING – personal movies, clips, slideshows, even audio with still backgrounds – is quite liberating and the attention feels great.

On the other end, that “play” button is like a shinny red button to a toddler calling our names – “PUSH MEEEEEeeeee!”  Rarely does it disappoint ether – “OOOOooooh, moving images and colors!”  If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video may be analogous to volumes of books.

A world of moving images are at your fingertips – find anything – from videos on how to make tiramisu to personal home videos of your buddies breaking the world record for eating the most peanut butter sandwiches in a minute.

With the embed code being so easily accessible (and even sites like Facebook automatically translating YouTube urls into embed’s), it’s easier than ever to SHARE your videos.  Mix in “heeelarious” content that your friends have to see and pass on, and born is the viral video – spreads like a virus – millions of views in a small amount of time.

YouTube.com now is the second most used search engine (next to king Google). It would only be a matter of time before advertisers/marketers (including all major corporations) took notice of the value of this amount of views and would devise plans to take prime advantage of this phenomenon. For example, Dell attributes 2 million of its sales to YouTube.

YouTube and Your Business

How can you take advantage of YouTube to market your products or services? It’s 100% free to create a channel, and easy to customize and brand as your business’s own video page. Upload an unlimited number of videos that are automatically indexed and searchable by not only YouTube, but google as well.  Make your videos easy to share.  Finally, generate enough interest and your YouTube videos can go a long way in bringing you attention, potentially resulting in revenue.

General Tips for Maximizing YouTube Marketing Value

Good content – bottom line – content is king. Nothing can replace good content. If your goal is to have a video go viral, your content should hopefully accomplish the following.

  • Share-worthy – Your video should make viewers want to share with friends. It’s best if this increases your views exponentially, meaning every 1 viewer passes it to at least 2 people.
  • Replay Value – Your video should cause viewers to want to replay it.

Generally, viral content is usually gut-busting comedy or captures something absolutely amazing and rare to see. Another great way to get a lot of views are “How-To” videos – answering a common question with a brief instructional video. Of course, creating content like this is easier said than done. :)

Call-To-Action Slide – Many videos begin and conclude with a slide that has an organizations branding, call-to-action, or contact information.

Take FULL Advantage of Social Networks – by now, if you’ve jumped on the social media bandwagon, you’re checking your Facebook or Twitter as much as your email. You’ve probably added friends you’ve never even really met. You may even realize that you’re connected to a huge web of millions upon millions of people – an extremely valuable marketing resource if you can tap into as many connections as you can.

  • Post the video on your facebook wall, twitter wall, blog, social bookmarks, myspace etc!
  • Post often and ask friends to share and post as well!
  • Note: just be careful to be balanced and not to spam your friends’ feeds, which will cause the opposite reaction – everyone to ignore you.

Best Time to Launch a Video – it’s argued that Friday and Sunday are the best days to launch a video, either during lunch or after work.

YOUTUBE SEO: Increase Your Ranking in YouTube Search (and even Google)

“ike any search engine, youtubes ranking is based on certain algorithms in which key criteria may be important. Here are some basics on how to optimize your videos so they rank better.

Tags/Meta Data – for all you SEO geeks, these fields - title, description, tags, etc. – all go into an algorithm that will your rank/index your videos in YouTube search results. The closer your video is to the top of the page when someone searches for your keyword, the better the chance it will be clicked on.

GOOGLE – It’s important to note that YouTube videos rank on GOOGLE search results as well, so having an optimized video may end up helping your SEO more than you think. Your site may not end up ranking on Google if your keyword is really popular, however, your video may end up at the top of Google organic search results.

Keywords – Optimize your video for certain keywords and sprinkle them in your meta-data as well as descriptions. For YouTube keyword research, use https://ads.YouTube.com/keyword_tool

Link Building/Interlinking – Linking to other videos in the descriptions or annotations also helps your video’s SEO.  Also, link to other sites through urls in your description (“http://” text is automatically converted into hyperlinks).  Link to a landing page on your main site.

Related Videos – You might think Youtube’s main search is best way to get your video noticed, but actually, majority of YouTube organic views (views not generated by paid ads) come from related videos. Thus, relating to the right video can be crucial. Related keywords should be taken into account in your SEO efforts.

Activity – The more active your video has, the better your ranking. Views, comments, stars, interlinks, etc, all count activity. One way to generate activity is to actually reply to comments on your video and get discussions going!

Annotations – Annotations count as activity. It engages the user with your video – engaging the user is always a plus. Ask people to comment, bookmark, subscribe to your channel, go to another video, etc.

Geographic Location – If your organization does local services, it’s always important to indicate geography in your profile since some search results can be geo-targeted.

YouTube Settings and Configurations

Title – Having a good title may make a difference in enticing a viewer to select your video. A video that’s called “206485.mpg” probably won’t attract as much views as a video titled “MOST AMAZING SKATEBOARD STUNT EVER!!!!”.

Description Field – You have 27 characters before your message becomes “…”, so use that space wisely. Link to your website or state a call-to-action.

Thumbnails – Though YouTube limits the thumbnails you’ll be able to choose to represent your video, it’s important to choose a good thumb from the options they do give you. Obviously, a still with an attractive looking person is more likely to entice viewers to click over say a blank black screen.

Playlists – Playlists show up on YouTube search results, so be sure to create good playlists.

Channel – Your channel should be treated like a landing page.  It’s your organization’s video page!

  • Profile – Make sure to fill out information about your organization – sites, interests, about/bio, etc. Users will land on your channel and look to this area as a birds-eye view of your organization.
  • Featured-Video – Make sure to choose an important featured video that you would like to draw attention to. Also, make it auto-play so your YouTube channel views will be counted towards video views.
  • Activity Feed – Use your activity feed to update your subscribers – similar to any social networking newsfeed.

Measuring Your Progress

Traffic On YouTube: YouTube Insights – YouTube now offers some great statistics on every video you upload. Login to your account on each video on your video page you’ll find an “Insights” button. This dashboard allows you to see for each video your views per day and the demographics of your views (geographic location, gender, etc). You can measure the success of a YouTube campaign by seeing if it caused your video views to spike on certain days/months.

Traffic From YouTube – Using analytics tools such as Google Analytics allows you to see if a popular video has generated traffic to your main site or ecommerce product. You can adjust your marketing strategies for your videos based on these metrics. Say adding a link to your site in the description of your video increases traffic to your site. You now know to do that for all videos!

Summary

  • Create an interesting video that will make viewers want to pass it on to their friends.
  • Increase your ranking by following good YouTube SEO Practices
  • Set up each video to have good branding, call-to-actions and conversion links to your respective site/product.
  • Measure your videos’ performances.

Apr 21
2010

Although every day is a mother’s day, here in the US we dedicate one day especially for her to show our appreciation and thankfulness.  Mother’s Day is just around the corner. As a marketer or a business owner you are getting ready, like all retailers, to kick-off your Mother’s Day campaigns. Last year’s campaign did ok. You didn’t get fired :) , but you didn’t get a promotion either! :( You are a much smarter marketer now and you want to better track your initiatives, assess what channel is performing and fix what is not performing. You are planning all sorts of marketing activities: offline: TV and newspaper ads; online: paid Search, email, banners, social media, and others.

You have your messaging, promotions, copy, creative, and landing pages all ready, and soon you will go live and you have a week to figure out this “tracking, measurement and analytics” business!

No worries! Google Analytics and this post have come to the rescue!!

In this post I will walk you through a process of how to plan and implement a comprehensive external campaign tracking.

Assumptions:

  • You have Google Analytics implemented on your site
  • You have a basic familiarity with URL tagging
  • Last but not least this post also assumes that you are ready and willing to be proactive and you do care about analytics and campaign ROI :)

Prerequisite: Structure & Naming Convention

As you know, the sole purpose of tagging is to differentiate between the different ads and campaigns you are running, so it is very important to agree on the structure and the naming convention as a first step. Here is an example:

As you can see from the chart above, we are running different online and offline ads for our Mother’s Day campaign. In the next section, we are going to tag all these ad’s links with the campaign variables using the URL Builder tool provided by Google.

Email

Email campaigns are one of the most effective ways of attracting visitors to your site especially existing clients. If we don’t tag the emails links with the right campaign tags, visits from emails will be attributed as referral or direct traffic.

How do we tag email links?

  1. Use the URL Builder or CampaignAlyzer to create tagged links
  2. Enter the following variables into the URL builder:
    Website URL: http://www.store.com/
    Campaign Source: newsletter-april
    Campaign Medium: email
    Campaign Name: Mother’s Day 2010
  3. Use the generated link URL in your email (ex. “Visit the Store” button”)

Banner

We will follow the same tagging steps that we used for email campaign to tag our banner campaign:

  1. Use the URL Builder or CampaignAlyzer to create tagged links
  2. Enter the following variables into the URL builder:
    Website URL: http://www.store.com/
    Campaign Source: oprah.com
    Campaign Medium: banner
    Campaign Name: Mother’s Day 2010
  3. Use the generated link URL in your banner (ex. “Shop Now” button”)

Twitter

Social media today is reshaping the online marketing landscape. People are using YouTube, Facebook, Flicker, and Twitter for more than just personal updates and video/picture exchange. There is a huge amount of promotion and branding taking place in these sites and our job in this post is to measure the success of these marketing efforts.

Let’s use Twitter for our Mother’s Day campaign and make sure we tag all links to our site with the proper campaign variables.

How do we tag Twitter links?

  1. Use the URL Builder or CampaignAlyzer to create tagged links
  2. Enter the following variables into the URL builder:
    Website URL: http://www.store.com/
    Campaign Source: twitter
    Campaign Medium: social media
    Campaign Name: Mother’s Day 2010
  3. Shorten the generated link URL using any URL shortening tools (I usually use bit.ly)
  4. Tweet about your promotion using the tiny URL

Paid Search – Google

Thanks God that Google AdWords and Google Analytics are cousins and integrate very well together! Google AdWords has a nice feature called auto-tagging which makes it easy for us to see AdWords campaign information in our Google Analytics reports without any manually tagging.

To learn more about auto-tagging visit this help topic.

How do we enable auto-tagging?

  1. Sign in to your AdWords account
  2. Click on My account tab and select Account preferences
  3. Under Tracking section, click Edit
  4. Check the Destination URL Auto-tagging checkbox
  5. Click “Save changes”

Paid Search – Yahoo

Unlike AdWords, to track Yahoo paid traffic we need to manually tag the destination URL with the campaign variables.

  1. Tag your yahoo ad link using the following variables:
    Website URL: http://www.store.com/
    Campaign Source: yahoo
    Campaign Medium: cpc
    Campaign Term: {OVKey}
    Campaign Name: Mother’s Day 2010
  2. Use the tagged URL for the “Destination URL” field

Paid Search – Bing

Similar to what we did with Yahoo ads, but with the following variables:

  • Website URL: http://www.store.com/
  • Campaign Source: bing
  • Campaign Medium: cpc
  • Campaign Term: {QueryString}
  • Campaign Name: Mother’s Day 2010

Tracking Offline Campaigns

When we talk about tracking campaigns, it is not enough to focus only on online campaigns. We have to include the offline campaigns in our reports for complete analysis. In this section, I will share with you one method of tracking your offline campaigns in Google Analytics in 2 simple steps:

  1. In your offline ads, refer visitors to a page that is unique to the campaign; [www.store.com/mother]
  2. Tag all visitors to the unique page with the campaign variables [source, medium, & campaign name]

How to tag all visitors to www.store.com/mother with the campaign variables?

We will assume that all visitors to the unique landing page [www.store.com/mother] are coming from a specific offline campaign let say the USA Today newspaper. When the USA Today visitors request the promotion URL and before we fire the Google Analytics code, we will refresh the landing page using meta-refresh tag, which update the URL with the campaign UTMs. When The Google Analytics code gets executed after the page refresh, it will see the URL with the campaign UTMs attached to it and will attribute the visit as desired.

How do we tag destination URLs?

  1. Go to the URL Builder
  2. Enter the following variables into the URL builder:
    Website URL: http://www.store.com/mother
    Campaign Source: usa-today
    Campaign Medium: newspaper
    Campaign Name: Mother’s Day 2010
  3. Add the following code to the header of landing page before the Google Analytics tracking code

    <head>
    <link rel=”canonical” href=”http://www.store.com/mother” />
    <meta http-equiv=”refresh” content=”1;URL=http://www.store.com/?utm_source=usa-today&utm_medium=newspaper&utm_campaign=Mother’s%2BDay%202010″>
    </head>

Analyzing the data:

Now as we had all tags in place, it is time for deep dive analysis into the “Mother’s Day 2010″ campaign. I suggest that you isolate the campaigns’ visits by using advanced custom segment and look at this unique segment across reports.

Creating Custom Advanced Segmentation

  1. Sign in to your Google Analytics account
  2. Advanced Segments > Create a new advanced segment
  3. Add the following dimensions:

Viewing Reports (Show me the money!!)

Now, you are ready to conduct analysis based on the customized segment. You can look at the traffic sources report and see how many people purchased and from which medium:

From the first look at the ecommerce numbers above, we can confirm that:

  • The TV campaign has the highest conversion rate
  • The newspaper campaign was not as effective as other campaigns
  • Social media has the highest ROI (Return on Investment)

Click on the dropdown menu below for more marketing campaign tagging examples.

If you like this exercise and you were able to extract some valuable insights for your business, apply the same concept for the upcoming Father’s Day, which is on June 20th here in the US and do a comparison between the users’ purchasing behavior in these two very special occasions.

Share your findings and happy analyzing and drop us a comment below!

Notes:

  • For advanced users and those interested in multi-channel attribution, you can make use of the the Multiple Custom Variables (MCV) feature in Google Analytics
  • If you are running social media and online viral marketing activities and you are active in blogging, on Twitter and Facebook, you should include “off-site” measurements in your overall campaign analysis. In addition, be sure to dedicate resources to listen and participate in the social conversations around your brand, products and campaigns

Related Posts

Jan 13
2010

I tuned in to the HubSpot webinar a couple weeks ago, which was called “The Science of Social Media Marketing.” It was one of the first webinars on Social Media that I attended that I actually learned from. Usually webinars about social media introduce the different funnels of micro-blogging, which is something many of us already know. What I’d like to know is how to USE these funnels to benefit my clients! ConnectionsDan Zarrella from HubSpot gave some excellent tips on how to use micro-blogging to engage your audience.

When I look at popular blog posts, videos, and tweets, I often wonder, “How in the world did this spread virally?” when it isn’t particularly good or even entertaining. Dan described it perfectly in saying that news spreads simply because of “contagiousness.” It has nothing to do with whether a video is good or not. People seem to be more attracted to posts that have many views; it seems to add credibility that many people have seen this post. The problem here is how do we get our social media content to reach a viral popularity?

Pressures of Micro-Blogging

The pressures of micro-blogging are much different today than they were even a few years ago. The problem with micro-blogging before was there was a limited amount of people that you could reach. Seeing as nowadays the amount of people you can reach is not an issue because of sites such as Twitter, and MySpace, where you can add people who are in your field, and in most cases they’ll add you because of your connection through the field. A new problem has occurred though, there is so much information that is being thrown at us daily, how do we make our content grab the user’s attention. That is the new issue arising with micro-blogging.

The way to grab a user’s attention is through finding a person in your field who has the power over influencing a large amount of his followers. Once you find this influencer, as Dan calls it, your next step is to make people aware. When you post your information, make sure your influencer reposts it. In terms of Twitter, post your information as a retweet so that it is simply passed on exactly as you posted it. A good tip is that you shouldn’t post very often; many people think to get a lot of people interested post as much information as possible. The problem with doing that is people will start to get frustrated with seeing multiple tweets and posts that it will get ignored or they will stop following you. So when you post information, make sure it’s relevant and don’t bombard your followers with updates.

Benefits of Social Media

Many traditional companies seem to shy away from social media; they fail to see the benefit. But what they don’t realize is that their competitors are one step ahead of them. Just being involved in the conversation about your company that is happening in the social universe is beneficial for you in itself. Having a Facebook fan page, or a Twitter, and the conversation in those spaces or directly on your page (through posts and updates) can help you identify problems that you may not have known were there otherwise. Through your pages you can instantly address problems. For example, If you are getting negative publicity, the more time you allow without addressing such issues can make your company seem stale or irrelevant. Your social media outlet will be the perfect place to catch these problems quick.

Having a presence in these spaces can also enhance your marketing efforts in ways you may not have thought of – announce sales, promotions, and posting live information as soon as they occur.

So, go out there find your influencers; stay connected, and don’t forget your calls to action!

Quick Tips:

  • Stay active on your social media funnels, check your profile, and keep up with your followers inquiries
  • Keep it personal; after all social media is about a human interaction with a company, not just a logo! For example, share pictures from your office, store or warehouse.
  • Use URL shortening tools for Twitter, since you are only limited to 140 characters.
  • Try to participate in conversations about your company where it makes sense.
  • Don’t forget to comment, retweet, and respond to tweets because this will build a community around your brand!

Related Links:

  1. Dan Zarrella’s Twitter: http://twitter.com/danzarrella – Very useful tweets! :)
  2. http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/marketing/article/5-ways-to-grow-your-local-business-with-social-media-john-jantsch – Article about how to use social media for a small/local businesses
  3. Follow E-Nor on Twitter! — http://twitter.com/enorinc