marketing strategy

Is Your Company's Online Presence Working?

Is Your Company's Online Presence Working?

For most businesses, it’s very likely that customers will interact with your company more online than in-person. It's also the case that nearly everyone searching online for your type of business won't get past the first page of Google results; and once they visit your website, they won't stick around if they can't immediately find what they are looking for.

Campaign Microsites Are a Must-Have to Increase Your Ad Results

We developed this campaign microsite for an urgent care opening. Within the first few months, visits exceeded projections by 400 patients per month.

We developed this campaign microsite for an urgent care opening. Within the first few months, visits exceeded projections by 400 patients per month.

Campaign-based microsites are websites with a custom URL that generally live outside of your corporate site and are created for one reason: to support a brand campaign.
 
They’re more effective at converting leads to sales for several reasons:

  1. The campaign promise is immediately obvious. Send users to your company website and you’re likely to lose them. Why? Because it’s too hard for them to find what the campaign promised. Even a few seconds looking for the item advertised will result in abandonment.
  2. Microsites often have far more design options than most corporate sites—which means they can often be more visually arresting. And good visuals help sell.
  3. Analytics for the campaign are easily viewed by agency and client, allowing the agency to make continual updates that improve SEO. This is faster, more efficient and effective than having a go-between.
  4. There’s just one call to action—and it’s the one that supports your ad campaign.

Don’t let your ad campaigns fall on deaf ears. Insist on a campaign microsite for any significant advertising campaign.

Use Video to Generate Enthusiasm for Your Organization’s Future

We worked with this health system to bring to life the successes they’ve experienced—so employees, physicians and board members could see the collective results of their work on their strategic plan.
 
Getting your team aligned with your future goals means making sure they understand both where you’re going, and how far you’ve already progressed towards your goals. Delivering this message in video makes it easy to show at employee events and share online.
 
What successes could you talk about to help generate enthusiasm for your future?

Five Consumer Holiday Shopping Trends That Will Affect Your Business in 2016

Consider Google’s recent insights on shopping for the holidays:

  • More decisions are made in micro-moments throughout the day—like when waiting, walking or commuting.
  • More decisions are made on the phone—up to 30%, according to Think With Google. In fact, shopping-related searches have grown more than 120% in the last year. And 82% of smartphone users will consult with their phone while they are in the store.
  • 32% of shoppers plan to use video for holiday purchases.
  • 64% of smartphone viewers would rather watch a video to answer questions than pick up a phone or read a manual.
  • Sundays are the biggest shopping days. And yet, the day when more businesses have shorter hours or are closed altogether.

Perhaps the biggest shift is that we have gone from focusing on a given task to splintering tasks into hundreds of bite size moments, according to Lis Gevelber, VP Marketing at Google.

Gevelber says these moments “are increasingly where hearts, minds and dollars are being won and lost…. And companies that measure and respond to micro-moments are gaining a very big edge on the competition. Mobile is the new from door to your brand and your stores. Are you at the door, ready to help?”*
 
So what does this mean for your business—even if you aren’t in retail? Often, the service industry will lag retail trends, but retail trends are a harbinger of consumer behaviors that will come your way. Here’s what you can do right now to respond to these:

  • While mobile must be a central part of any marketing strategy, having a mobile-friendly site is not enough. The content that your customers most crave must be available and easy to use on mobile.
  • Attention spans are shorter, so content you want to convey has to be delivered as snackables—short messages that fit between a myriad of other tasks.
  • Consumers want content in video form—and frequently will choose it over “reading”.
  • Can your customers find what they want on weekends and evenings—when they have discretionary time?

Now’s a good time to think about how these trends will affect your business, and to ask what your competitors are doing better than you are in each of these categories.

* Source: Micro-Moments and the Shopper Journey

Create Micro-moments for Your Clients

Whether or not we like it, we are increasingly people of the moment—or even the micro-moment. We hear about a book and want to order it right then. We see a plant and want to identify it, or spot those fabulous boots and want to buy them.
 
What does this mean for marketers? You already know that mobile use is sky-rocketing. But it also means that your digital presence is vital. How you look and feel in the first seconds of a customer interaction determines if they’ll stay or go.
 
Good writing, good design and having a mobile-friendly site isn’t optional any more. It’s imperative. If your company is already there, hooray. But if they’re not, learn to create the moments your clients crave—and see what happens.

5 Deadly Money-Saving Ways to Kill Your Next Ad Campaign

See the difference a professional shot makes. Top photo: We called in a pro. Bottom photo: They should have called in a pro.

Advertising has to work on every level. For many, it will be the only impression of your company or service that the consumer gets—or at least their first impression. So make the effort and investment you put into your message commensurate with the investment you’ve put into your product or service. Often times, companies will hire architects and designers for a new facility, for example, but fail to represent it accurately by saving money on the marketing. They’ll hire and train great people to deliver a good experience, but never connect them with the public due to low quality advertising.
 
So don’t do it. Avoid these 5 deadly money-saving ways to kill an ad campaign:

  1.  “We saw a campaign we liked somewhere else that we’d like to copy.” Even if it were ethical to “borrow” creative, for the campaign to work everything about their market and your market would need to be the same—demographics, your own organization’s reputation, your ability to deliver on the promise, attitudes and culture.
     
  2. “We’ll take the pictures ourselves.” Unless you have a professional photographer on staff, this can be a costly mistake. We called in one of our pros to shoot the photo above to move the needle on the “Wow” factor using a myriad of technical and other tricks that could never be reproduced by an amateur. That photo projects a level of excellence for the urgent care center that can’t be put into words. You want to go there even before you read the copy.
     
  3. “We can’t afford a professional designer.” Companies will spend thousands of dollars on the media buy but cheat the very message by lackluster, unprofessional or simply ineffective design. Before making this decision, ask how much you’ve already invested in the product or service, and whether this relatively small investment in good design will reflect the image you’re looking for.
     
  4. “We can’t afford a professional writer.” There are all kinds of writers, and they differ in the same way there are all kinds of balls—footballs, golf balls, ball bearings—you name it. They are not interchangeable any more than a copywriter or a technical writer is. Good copy writers know how to get and keep the reader’s attention, and most importantly, how to sell.
     
  5. “We can’t afford research.” Unless you’re sure you understand the mind of your target audience, this is like buying a plane ticket to a destination without specifying the destination. Underlying any kind of creative are assumptions that, if wrong, will decimate your campaign.

If budgets are too tight, we’d recommend doing less, but doing it better. You never get a second chance to make a first impression.