Article | February 20, 2020
How effective is your content? We all seek to develop a content strategy that delivers value to our audience. When we succeed, we turn strangers into customers and become a leader in the market by building authority and credibility. This journey of discovering the effectiveness of content is known as content intelligence. This is a term you’re likely to see more and more as artificial intelligence plays a larger role in the marketing efforts of businesses of all sizes. The opportunity to glean insights from content data is just another example of how AI delivers value to our marketing strategy.
Article | February 20, 2020
Developing a website is not enough for any business, active participation is also essential to attract potential buyers. Social media is a platform for the users to interact, create or share their ideas and participate in social networking. A company’s online reputation depends on social media influence. This means that the more influential you are on social media, the better your reputation is. So, associate with a provider offering social media marketing in Long Island to effectively utilize social networking platforms to gain traffic and attract the targeted audience. Social media marketing allows you to increase brand awareness, create brand advocates and increase page rank. Social media can also improve SEO traffic. It has gained a lot of prominence over the years, and social media trends keep changing each year.
Article | February 20, 2020
The way in which consumers are searching for products online has changed. In recent times, there has been a significant increase in question-based searches from consumers looking for quick solutions to their needs, overtaking direct searches for brand names.
It’s clear the consumer environment is evolving, so what can be done to ensure existing and emerging businesses can keep up?
Nate Burke, CEO of technology, digital marketing, and ecommerce solutions firm Diginius, explains the importance of optimising your products to meet this changing behaviour, while also remembering to build on your brand to become the ultimate business.
Marketplaces are now dominating the online sphere, which results in more unbranded searches being made by online shoppers who are looking for solutions to their queries, rather than a name-brand product. Nowadays, global brands can expect 58% of their searches to be unbranded, while surprisingly, for small and mid-sized businesses, the figure is much higher, sitting at around 81%.
Of course, for many businesses that heavily rely on their brand awareness and branded searches to bring in revenue, this rise might be a cause for concern.
However, virtual and online marketplaces are now considered one of the most effective ways to scale globally, both for established businesses and smaller brands as they account for almost half of all global ecommerce sales.
Whilst these platforms were once a place for small and independent brands, online retail giants such as Amazon and Walmart are beginning to scale their own marketplaces, capitalising on the nearly $2 trillion that is spent annually on the top 100 marketplaces.
The shift in search can be put down to a number of changes in the way we shop, consume media and use technology. Notably, the increasing access to voice search, with Alexa and Google devices now regular features in our homes, has encouraged the rise of question-based searches.
Understandably, competition on these platforms is increasing. So, in order to ensure their products are being presented to the right customers, businesses must work on product optimisation, while also building on their brand to encourage trust and repeat purchases.
Recreating the “boutique” shopping experience online
One way to do this is by aligning in store and online experiences. For example, although the days of exploring treasure trove, boutique shops are dwindling in favour of the online environment, consumers are still looking for those unique, personalised experiences from brands.
In fact, 33% of consumers prefer to buy unique products over mass-manufactured items, which businesses should use as an opportunity for innovation within their product offering – to develop something that the other big retailers do not.
Etsy is the perfect example of how independent sellers have come together on one virtual marketplace platform to provide consumers with just that: the opportunity to find unique, handmade products, combined with the ease of shopping online.
The ecommerce and PPC perspectives
Google processes over 40,000 search queries every second. Whilst some of these are guaranteed to be named brand searches, many are following suit with the growing solution-led trend, creating a strong case for brands to focus their efforts on appearing in these results through search engine and product description optimisation.
For example, say a consumer is searching for loungewear. Emotional, descriptive words that create a sense of feel and a tailored result should play into your product descriptions, such as “warm loungewear”, “comfortable loungewear” or “soft loungewear”.
The idea here is to narrow down descriptions to give people exactly what they want when performing these niche, specific searches. And in the era of voice search, ensuring products are optimised with accurate and specific descriptions is crucial.
The same approach is effective for product ads, too. Descriptions and targeting cues must be tailored to customers’ searches in order to generate the best results. While this might sound like a time-consuming task, the use of PPC software and analytics tools can help you to automate, test and adjust activity for optimum performance. For example, through use of dynamic ads, copy can be adjusted to ensure it is directly relevant and personal to each searcher to encourage click through and conversions.
Although Google remains the go-to search advertising platform, we always recommend running ads on Microsoft’s Bing platform too, as often, businesses find they generate better returns and require less budget. This is because Bing is much less competitive than Google, with fewer advertisers bidding for the same keyword, although search volumes remain attractive.
Similarly, with the rise of social media commerce, with Facebook Marketplace and Instagram Shopping leading the way, as well as Amazon advertising, businesses looking to capitalise on shifting search and shopping habits have a number of avenues to explore.
And while these tactics can help get products in front of customers in the increasingly competitive solution-led search environment, others, including retargeting, can then help to build brand awareness. This way, brands can capture customers who may have only been in the discovery or research phase when they were served the initial ad, as well as customers who may be ready to repurchase.
This solutions-based environment is similar to that of Ask Jeeves, or, as it is known today, Ask.com. The question answering business was a perfect example of how a search engine can cater to the needs of consumers and provide quick answers to their questions. However, it was launched ahead of its time.
It is interesting to see how this has now come full circle, with consumers needing quick and snappy results on-the-go, and Ask.com being perfectly positioned to cater to this need. AI has somewhat advanced this algorithmic model in today’s Google-led environment, but one could have imagined, in another time and place, that Ask could have been a pioneer in search-led advancement, rather than being the nostalgic afterthought it remains today.
This is also a prime example of the constantly evolving online market. What consumers need today might not be what they want tomorrow. Although unfortunate in the case of Ask.com, businesses that can stay ahead of the curve by paying close attention to changes in consumer behaviour are much better off than those that stay stagnant. And, brands, whatever their size or scale, should most certainly pay attention and align their product descriptions to fit a much more solutions-led environment.
But whilst adapting to changes, it’s important to never lose focus of the brand. Customers will always inherently look for trust in their purchases, and a simple flash offer is not enough to sway them away from a brand that deliver quality and confidence in its delivery.
Although non-branded searches are the trend today, any sustainable business must be backed by a strong brand - that’s one thing that will never change.
Article | February 20, 2020
The effects of this year have seen the influencer marketing industry ramp up, and by a significant amount, too.
Our Instagram feeds are filled with more ADs than before and the battle is on for brands to secure long-lasting, authentic collaborations with their favourite influencers. But how can brands transition influencers into ambassadors for 2021?
Amelia Neate, Senior Manager at agency Influencer Matchmaker, explains how brands should be looking to consider ambassadors as part of their influencer marketing strategy for the new year.
The rise of influencer marketing
Fast approaching a market size of $10 billion, the influencer marketing industry has seen an estimated growth of at least 50% each year since 2016. And over the last year alone, the industry has increased by approximately $3 billion.
The coronavirus pandemic has simply sped up changes that were already underway and has allowed creators and agencies within the industry to understand the need to adapt to consumer needs.
And if this year has taught us anything, it’s that trust, and authenticity are pivotal. So, with that being said, we believe that brands should be looking to transition influencers into ambassadors in order to promote collaborative, long-term partnerships.
One-off campaigns vs long-term partnerships
This is not a case of one being better than the other. They both offer incredible benefits to brands, however here at Influencer Matchmaker, we wanted to inform brands how they can turn the influencers they work with into ambassadors and long-term partners.
Influencers are a great way for brands to reach a brand-new audience, providing them with the ability to target potential consumers.
With large and loyal followings, influencers are able to promote a brand, along with their products and services, creating rather impactful results, however many influencer relationships are short-term.
And whilst this is incredibly effective, some brands may prefer to work with influencers as part of an ambassadorship and work on a number of campaigns with them over a longer period of time.
Influencers, as part of both short-term and long-term campaigns, will create and share content about the brand and its products.
However, brand ambassadors will actively and regularly use the products and will share the same values as both the brand and their target audience. This, in turn, creates an authentic and honest relationship between the ambassador and their following.
Consider an ambassador a cheerleader for your brand. They become a representative and maintain an ongoing relationship, earning the trust and loyalty of their followers.
Often, when brands form a partnership with an ambassador, they can post a variety of content, as opposed to one-off posts or stand-alone images. They are able to get involved in press events, offer discount codes and so much more.
Long-term collaborations and ambassadorships usually take part over the course of three months or longer.
How to transition an influencer into an ambassador
Brands should look for influencers who are already fans of their brand and products, and actively uses them.
This may seem odd - why pay somebody to promote your brand when they already talk about it to their audience?
If an influencer already uses your product or has previously discussed your brand, then they already have an audience that is interested and engaged, meaning they are likely to receive any long-term campaigns and collaborations extremely well.
This also increases the level of trust between the brand, the influencer and the target audience. The audience will recognise the authenticity of the collaboration, resulting in a greater return on investment (ROI) for the brand.
As well as this, more recently, brands have been collaborating with ambassadors in a different way and one that is proving to be extremely effective.
Ambassadors have been creating their very own collections with brands, as well as selecting their own edits. This has allowed brands to collaborate with ambassadors in a much more personal manner, creating an even deeper connection with their audience and potential consumers.
Popular influencers have been collaborating with well-known retailors to do exactly that. Victoria Magrath, founder of InTheFrow, recently teamed up with luxury jewellery brand Edge of Ember to create her very own collection. And fellow luxury fashion influencer Lydia Millen has also partnered with Karen Millen.
Similarly, Emma Willis and Marvin Humes have formed a long-term partnership with well-known high-street brand, Next. They both create seasonal fashion edits and collections, which are incredibly well-received by their audiences.
In The Style is an online retailer which is recognised for its long-term collaborations with a number of successful social media influencers. Getting the likes of Jacqueline Jossa, Olivia Bowen and Billie Shepherd on board to create their very own clothing ranges has made the brand one of the most successful online fashion stores.
Transitioning an influencer into an ambassador is a sure-fire way to create successful campaigns. And now more than ever, consumers are seeking creative and authentic partnerships, and what better way to do that than with a brand ambassador?