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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Twitter Marketing: Some Useful Tips

What makes any platform unique is its functionality. Today, we have several social platforms that have something special for their users. Twitter is one such platform that has really evolved to offer much-needed user experience.
 
Over the years, Twitter has been experimenting with features that can make the platform user-friendly. If used properly, this platform can really be influential in generating good marketing response. 

Here are some tips to get maximum from your Twitter marketing.

1) Be consistent with content creation
2) Do not self-hype
3) Educate your audience over your products and services
4) Increase use of hashtags
5) Follow as many as people you can on Twitter
6) If possible, use sponsored tweets or Twitter advertising
7) Use Twitter chat
8) Schedule your tweets for special occasions
9) Use as many as images you can
10) Ask people to re-tweet your tweets, ask them to use hashtags
11) Never miss any opportunity to interact with the people who follow, re-tweet or use your hashtags

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Social Media: What Customers Should Expect?

For me, social media marketing is all about creating stable and consistent customer relationship. This objective has to be the center of any social media marketing strategy. In this article, I am going to write about takeaways that customers should expect from brands through their social media strategy.

1) Customer Engagement: The first and foremost is the customer engagement. Undoubtedly, this has to be the ultimate objective of any social media strategy. Through social media, marketers, now, have an extended opportunity to streamline and speed up their customer engagement process. This has brought customers to the center stage of the marketing strategies of marketers. Hence, customers should stick with the brands that are committed to customer engagement.

2) Consistent Customer Communication: Communication is an integral part of the marketing strategy. Traditionally, marketers depended on emails, news papers, radio or TV to reach out to their customers. Now, with social media, marketers have an enhanced mode of communication and that too very consistent. Customers can now expect, and should demand, consistent communication from the brands. Be it on Facebook, Twitter or any other social platform, customers can now expect stable and consistent communication from the brands.

3) Improved CRM: No business can succeed without stable customer relationship management (CRM) process. Businesses have invested lots of money in implementing stable CRM mechanism to keep customers happy. However, with social media, now they can do it for free. Hence, customers have an added advantage of using social media to demand effective and efficient customer service from their brands.

4)  Authenticity: Social media has added an additional level of authenticity to the presence of brands. The active social consumers can now expect brands to be more authentic and genuine by connecting with them on social platforms. They can monitor brand behavior on social media before making any decision to connect with them.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Four Concepts For Building A Brand That People Trust

Branding is not just about creating an image in front of your target audience, it’s more than that. It’s about delivering trust to your target audience through available marketing channels. Over the years, businesses are using various platforms, such as TV, print, Radio and billboards, to be in front of their audience always. Now with social media, marketers have got an additional opportunity to navigate through the minds of their customers.

Branding is like creating psychological effect on the minds of the customers. The idea is to keep customers close to the brand in every possible way.

The branding approach may defer marketer to marketer, however, there are certain ideas or concepts that should remain constant for all.

These are:


Be Simple: Branding has really moved on with the emergence of social media. It has come out of the board rooms to be discussed and measured openly. It is no longer required marketing jargons, but a simple humanized approach to stay connected to your target audience. Let’s simplify your brand and add convenience to the whole process. It’s all about customers, not about you.

Be Reliable: Often, customers tend to go with the brands that are reliable in the market. When initiating a stable branding strategy, every marketer should keep this in mind. By reliability, it means consistency in solving customers’ problems and consistency in reaching out to the customers. Reliability is one of the key factors that help marketers initiate and stabilize effective product positioning in the market.

Be Realistic: For me, branding is all about truth. It’s very important for marketers to showcase true picture of their business to the customers. Any unhidden marketing agenda may dent the long-term marketing objectives. Your realistic approach towards customers and market will help you build brand loyalty and improved conversion opportunities. The consistent conversation marketing will help you in this whole process.

Be Stable: Along with the reliability comes stability. This factor is effective when it comes to market competition. Customers tend to favour those brands which are stable. By stability, we mean ability to deliver constant market results and customer services.

Branding is not just about showcasing your products/services, it’s about simplifying the process which helps customers to connect with your company.

Social Media & Branding:

Today, branding is about customers, it’s about engagement, it’s about conversation, and moreover, it’s about consistency. Delivering consistence branding message is of utmost importance in today’s competitive market. Marketers need to make use of social media platforms and content to create competitive advantage in the market.

Engagement is the heart, soul and mind of social media marketing. Social media has given both marketers and customers plenty of opportunities to initiate a process where customers can know brands, and brands can know their customers. This to-and-fro process establishes a healthy dialogue between brands and customers, helping customers make financial decisions. Hence, engagement lies at the core of economics associated with the social media marketing.

A good branding strategy is a mix of relevance and influence. This relevance and influence can only be achieved with precise content. Content precision and consistency help marketers generate positive customer feedback. And customer feedback is key to self-improvement.

With social media marketing, marketers have enough opportunities to derive stable branding experience for their customers. However, the significance lies in utilizing these opportunities to the precision.

Don’t Move Away from your Ultimate Objective:


Customers need brands that offer commitment to them. They are really not interested in ‘one-night stands’ offered by the mundane marketing activities. They demand a sustained engagement process delivered through stable conversation process. Marketers have to portray engagement through their marketing messages to give confidence to the customers for buying their products and services.

I have often seen marketers determine the success of social media strategies on the basis of numbers. Although numbers form a crucial part of the strategy, they are not the end objective. As social platforms are focusing more user experience and stability, marketers with the number tendency have finding it difficult.

I personally believe, social media marketing is for the people who are aware of their long term objectives and are prepared to spend sizable time to achieve those objectives. This is where your soul “engagement” comes into the picture. Social media marketing is all about delivering stable and consistent customer experience. And to do that engagement is the key.

At a broader level, engagement becomes your key deliverable. All other aspects fall behind it. If you are aiming at engagement, then whatever is the platform, whichever is the technology, you will find things falling into the place as per your demand.

Conclusion:

Modern day marketing is no longer a monologue. Now, customers call for a consistent conversation or dialogue with the brands to get more out of their purchasing power. Brands have to be there when customers want them. For me, the prime objective of branding needs to be deliver engagement and allow customers to openly interact with the brands. When you add a human touch to your branding process, the entire thing automatically gets converted into a personalized phenomenon.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Human Factor and Social Media

Today, most of us are talking about the advancements that are taking place in social media. Be it social media platforms or tools, we are more bothered about the numbers and so called, marketing ROI. I do accept that we all are doing social media marketing for returns, however, the cause of concern is the focus on short term goals. Here the question arises, Why can't we focus on long-term objectives?

For me, the real essence of social media lies in the "human" factor. We are looking out for tools that can automate or schedule our activities, however, we are not ready to make our efforts "personal". We're not ready to spend hours in developing and maintaining the "engagement" aspect of social media.

Now, the need has come to maintain balance between numbers and the human factor. Go for the longer objectives and do away with the short term goals. Let there be more emphasis on what you share and why you share. Do not make sharing a monotonous activity, let's make it an interesting entity of your social media presence. 


How to Use Email Marketing for Lead Generation

Personally, email marketing is one of my favorite channel for lead generation. Email marketing not only establishes direct connect with the end-user, but also enables improved engagement opportunities. Nowadays, I have seen marketers using bulk marketing techniques. In some circumstances, it may generate desired results, however, I strongly believe permission-based email marketing is authentic and targeted.

With permission-based email marketing, marketers can improve overall ROI of their marketing efforts, as they are sending information to those users who have asked for it. In a way, they are directly communicating with their potential customers. Here, other stats like bounce rate, CTR or cost per conversion will always be high. 

Here are some important aspects that need to be consider for using email marketing for lead generation.

1) Use Opt-in Method: Never send emails to unknown database. Even if you get response through it, the marketing ROI will always be low. Instead, create opt-in form on your website and encourage users to register for your mailers. This would also make your emailing efforts authentic and fruitful.

2) Maintain Consistency: I am a big fan of consistency when it comes to online marketing. You cannot get into the minds of your target audience one mailer or one social media post or one ad. To do that, you have to be consistent in your marketing efforts. If you are asking users to register for your mailers, please be consistent with your mailing activity.

 3) Use Call to Action: It is advisable to use call to action in your mailers. This will lead to enhanced lead generation. Most importantly, keep your call to action above fold always. 

 4) Be Precise with Message: If you have a mailing list and if you have an opportunity to send them mailers, please do not waste it. Be precise with your marketing message and let users understand what you want from them. Remember, every missed opportunity can lead to marketing disaster.

Monday, April 6, 2015

How to Use Social Media Platforms for Lead Generation?

We all are trying to find an ideal answer to this question. I have been writing on social media for a long time now and I wish to thank all my readers for supporting me. Today, I am writing on a subject that has been handled by so many social media bloggers now. This article will list some important and useful tips that can be used to enhance lead generation from social media marketing efforts.

Facebook:

  • Use of call to actions in cover photos
  • Include link in captions
  • Increase use of images
  • Go for paid advertisements
  • Use promote post option

Twitter:

  • Use of Twitter chat
  • Explore paid option 
  • Consistent content sharing 
  • Ask questions to followers to get more ideas directly from the customers
  • Possible use of promoted tweets on certain occasions
  • Find a chance to survey followers
  • Increase opportunities for content re-tweet

LinkedIn:

  • Join groups
  • Publish articles/blogs
  • Share content on LinkedIn Groups
  • Use Format of ‘Asking Questions’ to post content on LinkedIn

SlideShare:

  • Create fresh content or explore content ideas that can be shared on SlideShare
  • Keep consistency with template
  • Increase use of images
  • Use of less text/slide for better and quick understanding
  • Post presentations on LinkedIn


Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Social Media: How to Structure your Content for Engagement

We have often seen marketers talking about ROI for their social media marketing efforts. Majorly, marketers are more concerned with numbers to measure their marketing activities. However, I personally, feel that the engagement factor is missing its shine in the overall social media efforts. It has been observed that marketers are tend to focus more on clicks and leads and are missing the critical engagement value.





I have always believed that content is the only medium to drive that much-needed engagement for marketers. It is an effective and efficient medium to bridge the gap between brands and customers. Now, let’s talk about the ways to drive engagement with your content.

Focus on customers: It is always important to remember that every marketer should keep customers ahead in mind while deciding the content strategy. The content should be created in such a way that it should reflect customers’ issues and address their concerns. It has to be presented in a subtle and stable manner, which can be easily understood by the customers.



Call for an engagement: I have often seen marketers who focus only on leads or clicks through their content efforts. Ideally, their content efforts should call for an engagement. Getting a stable customer engagement mechanism should be the priority of the marketer.  Any social media marketing strategy needs to be targeted towards long-term objective, rather than focusing on short-term goals.


No self-hype: I personally feel that social media content should not be used from the promotional point of view only. Marketers should focus more on educating customers on their brands, rather making self-promoting speeches. The best way is: Think like a publisher and act like a marketer. The idea is to deliver sensible content, which can help customers understand brand and services.



Talk about customer benefits: The best way to make your content readable is to make it customer-oriented. The content has to be structured in such a way that it talks about the customer benefits. Customers are more interested in content that can help them understand advantages they are getting rather listening to the marketing jargon about the products.

Content is an effective way to reach out to our target audience. The success of your social media marketing strategy depends on how content is positioned and packaged. The streamlined and stable content approach helps make customer engagement process simpler and effective.