Customer Service Marketing

 

Any company’s growth depends on customers and customer service. As such, your customer service must also be exceptional to keep your customers. Treat them poorly, and they will reciprocate the same energy. They’ll feel like you’re being selfish, ditch you and opt for caring rivals.

 

Put plainly, your customers are the real boss because the company ceases to exist without them. This reality forces every business to keep up with customer service trends less they lose their real bosses. 

 

At the core of top-notch customer service support is a collection of systems, processes, and tools that turn your strategies into excellent customer satisfaction. 

 

The foundation of modern customer support is hinged on the cloud. Traditional call centers are now on the cloud by leveraging cloud call center software solutions alongside other tools to maximize customer service experience. As such, these trends improve customer satisfaction and impacts your marketing too. 

 

Some of the post-pandemic customer technology trends redefining the business landscape include: 

 

  • 24/7 omnichannel customer support 
  • Real-time support to resolve customer problems faster. 
  • Automation streamlining customer support services under a single platform 

 

Before we unpack these key trends and their impact on marketing, let’s first understand what customer service technology entails. 
 

What Is Customer Service Technology?


The trends we are about to unpack are primarily driven by technology in customer service support. Customer service technology is a collection of tools, systems, and strategies that maximize your customer service. 

 

It is designed to enhance high return on investment (ROI). It does this by turning your business process towards customers. It also develops effective communication strategies to enhance the exceptional customer experience across all channels. 

 

Your marketing efforts must also adapt to these changing customer service trends. As such, you can leverage them to scale your marketing efforts. So let’s explore how these recent customer service trends are impacting marketing. 
 

Reliable 24/7 Omnichannel Support Through Cloud Call Center


Companies no longer work on two contact points like in the old days using phone or fax. Now there are more channels, and some are popping up. You currently have a phone, email, live chat, social media, SMS, and private messaging apps like Facebook Messenger and Whatsapp. 

 

As such, omnichannel support is the best approach companies are resorting to keep up. The greatest customer service should always meet the customer where they are. With reliable 24/7 omnichannel support, customers can choose the suitable channel to connect to a support agent. 

 

As such, your company can create a smooth customer experience that maximizes customer satisfaction. Some of the benefits of 24/7 omnichannel support include; 

 

  • On-the-go customer service that scales your business performance 
  • Ability to provide real-time support may it be through video, text, or voice chat 
  • Uncover deep insights from customer profiles

 

These benefits can also improve your marketing campaigns. You can easily reach your customers on their preferred channel. You can quickly streamline your customer support and marketing campaigns across multiple channels under a single platform. 

 

So, how do you implement or upgrade your customer service to catch up? Besides, you should achieve this whether you have an internal or outsourced customer support team. 

 

With the current trend in remote work, you’ll also need to empower the remote team to be efficient as an in-house team. A cloud call center software solution can help you implement 24/7 omnichannel support. It will empower your agents wherever they are. They can plug in using a phone or laptop and ensure you offer reliable round-the-clock support. 

 

Plus, there is zero on-premise hassle; you do not need to worry about system updates, security, hard drives, etc. Get your internet connection right, and the rest is handled by the firms like Bright Pattern cloud software solution providers. 
 

Real-Time Support and Increase in Video Marketing 


Another incredible customer service trend is real-time support through live chat. You can do it using audio or video chat. But, video is more effective and impactful in customer service support and marketing. 

 

A live chat lets you guide the customer step-by-step regarding their queries on your services and products. People spent about half a trillion hours on mobile live streaming apps in 2020 alone. The industry is projected for more growth in the future. 

 

So, including real-time support as part of your customer service support strategy can benefit you in various ways:

 

  • Resolve customer’s issues instantly
  • Saves time for both agent and customer.  
  • Increases chances of conversation rates hence higher sales revenues. 
  • Improve customer engagement and overall satisfaction. 

 

Since it can also drive conversion rates and enhance customer engagement, live streaming or live chat can improve your marketing too. 
 

Increase Customer Satisfaction Using Customer Service Automation


The rise in messaging platforms like Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp, WeChat, Telegram, etc., has prompted an increase in AI chatbot adoption. Chatbots are automated widgets that can act as customer service agents on your website. 

 

But chatbots powered by artificial intelligence (AI) can do more than simplified tasks. They can track orders, suggest products based on user preference, improve conversion sales, etc. 

 

Since it can ask and help guide a user to the right resources, it can pick web visitors’ behavior, taste, and preferences. Those insights can be helpful for other marketing campaigns. As such, automation of customer support through tools like AI chatbots can maximize the efficiency and accuracy of your team. 

 

Plus, it can save you money by reducing the number of human agents on standby. You will only need to escalate complex tickets to human agents.  

 

You can check out leading chatbot providers relevant to your industry to help leverage automated customer service support.
 

Final Thoughts


Customer service support is a growth-driving factor you can not afford to miss. Recent trends like reliable 24/7 omnichannel support, an increase in AI chatbots, and live chat increase customer engagement and satisfaction. So, you must keep up with relevant customer service trends to leverage your growth. 

 

The trends can also impact your brand positioning and conversion rates, thus scaling your marketing efforts. To adapt to these trends, you can use cloud call center software solutions, AI chatbots, and live streaming platforms. 

data-analytics

 

The marketing process includes all the steps an organization takes to evaluate opportunities in the marketplace and determine the target audience. This essential business component builds brand awareness and educates your ideal customers about the products and services you’re trying to offer to them. Indeed, you have to ensure the effectiveness of this element so you can successfully boost your revenue by attracting the right buyers and encouraging their loyalty.

 

With recent technological innovations, businesses should take advantage of valuable insights to accurately predict consumer behavior and improve decision-making. That said, you must utilize data analytics because it can help you assess sets of information by taking raw data and identifying patterns to extract essential insights from it. As a result, this component makes your marketing campaigns more effective and improves your customer service by constantly meeting the expectations of your target customers.

 

In this article, you’ll learn four surefire strategies for using data analytics to enhance your marketing process.

Build Your KPIs


Key performance indicators (KPIs) are essential data that tell a story of how an organization can progress in meeting its goals. These KPIs enable companies to understand if they are headed on the right path and redirect them to stay on track with their objectives. With the right marketing KPIs, organizational leaders can determine which tactics and campaigns have the greatest effect on whether or not they reach their goals.

 

Not a single organizational leader nor investor wants to support a business-to-business (B2B) marketing campaign that could potentially lose the budget. That said, entrepreneurs must set the right B2B marketing KPIs to make appropriate and informed adjustments on various budgets and strategies. For instance, you may use marketing revenue attribution as one of your data-driven metrics to help you identify the number of qualified leads who are influenced by your marketing efforts.

Personalize Your Marketing Campaigns


With advanced data analytics, companies can gain sufficient knowledge about their customers, which helps them identify their changing needs. More so, you can personalize your marketing messages by receiving valuable bottom line data like group, gender, location, and age to gain a better return on investment (ROI). As you use these insights to promote your brand and products, you can evaluate common behavior habits that enable you to establish a realistic buyer persona.

 

For instance, you may address your existing and prospective customers by their first names in your personalized email campaigns to encourage them to respond to your message. Alternatively, you may personalize web pages that tailor the user experience by adding a ‘welcome back’ message or introductory video. Also, you may consider using customer purchase histories with the help of data analytics to ask customers to customize their interests, which helps them gain more specific product recommendations.

Leverage Product Intelligence


Product intelligence is an essential marketing element that involves taking an in-depth knowledge about the company’s inventory and the ones in the market. This component allows marketing leaders to understand the authentic benefits and features of a particular product and how consumers use it. With this insight, marketers develop more engaging campaigns that resonate with the language of their existing and ideal customers by speaking to their pain points.

 

Product intelligence depends on combining product insights and operational knowledge to help the leaders ensure successful product development. For example, you can collect valuable data about how your customers use a particular product to improve models to encourage them to become repeat buyers. With this strategy, your organization stays competitive in your niche instead of risking a serious market share loss to most of your top competitors.

Monitor Brand Reputation


A good brand reputation is essential in the marketing process of the organization because it results in higher profits and revenue. Moreover, companies that sustain this element allow sales leaders to charge a premium for their products and services without losing customers since they view their brands as valuable and desirable. Once they maintain this positive image within the marketplace, they can increase customer loyalty and help position themselves as the authority in the industry.

 

You may conduct an effective brand reputation analysis by monitoring your brand’s mentions throughout various social media channels using data analytics. Usually, these insights are displayed to highlight whether engagement relating to your brand is increasing, constant, or decreasing. Once your mentions increase, you may check the significant drivers and assess the data to determine if they are positive or negative, then act accordingly. 

 

Key Takeaway


As a business owner, you must make use of modern technology to gather and store valuable customer information. With that, you should consider following these four strategies in taking advantage of data analytics to improve your marketing process. In turn, you can effectively understand the ever-changing preferences of your ideal buyers and sustain the interest of your existing customers.

 

gen-z-marketing

 

In terms of marketing, for years, the generation of Millennials has been ruling the parade. Born between 1980 and 1995, Millennials were the predominant generation and also the largest focus of marketers since a huge part of goods and services consumers could be found specifically among the representatives of this generation.

 

However, as time flows, representatives of new generations are growing up and overtaking the market. According to the New York Post, in 2020, people from Gen Z have already outnumbered the share of Millennials. That is, they are now going to be the major driving force for marketing, and we ought to prepare!

 

Gen Z Profile


Generation Z is also known as Gen Z or Zoomers. This demographic group follows Millennials and precedes Gen A (Alpha). Different media and researchers tend to use different birth years to identify people of Generation Z. However, most often, representatives of this generation are believed to be born between the mid-to-late 1990s and the early 2010s.

 

The main thing that makes this generation different is that its representatives are the first ever to grow up with access to portable digital technology and the Internet from a very young age.

 

Since early childhood, people from Gen Z know how to interact with all sorts of gadgets. They are pros in social media and internet search. And, as they grow up, they learn to use various technologies to make their lives easier. For example, Gen Z makes up the largest share of users of essay writing services. If they need to boost grades or free up some time, they go straight to custom writing service and get the help they need. Long story short, they are digital natives, and you can’t take it away from them.

 

And, due to the same reason, they have a very different outlook and understanding of this world.

 

As was mentioned earlier, by this time, Gen Z has already outnumbered all the preceding generations, and most representatives of this group are already about to step into their adulthood. That is, the largest part of consumers these days belong to this group. With that being said, it becomes clear that marketers should really start keeping an eye on Gen Z in order to learn how to market to this consumer contingent right.

 

Gen Z and Marketing: 5 Tips to Reach Out and Engage Them


 

Here are five tips to help you start marketing to Generation Z and make the most of it:

Social Media

 

We already told you that the lives of Gen Z take place online. Unlike preceding Gen X and Millennials, people from this generation don’t know the world without social media and the Internet in general. So, they tend to use and trust the web much more than anyone else.

 

What does this mean in terms of marketing? Gen Zers spend lots of time using social media and the Internet, and they expect brands they buy from to do too. They want to be able to access brands and their products via different channels throughout their buyer’s journey.

 

How to use this in your strategy? Get active on social media! Your brand should be present in all popular channels and be active there. But, most importantly, don’t use it only as a marketing tool. Think of social media as an opportunity to communicate with your prospects and use it to provide them with funny, engaging, or valuable content instead of making only marketing posts.

 

Here is an example of how a popular essay writing service EssayService is balancing marketing and non-marketing content by posting student and college-life-related memes:

 

branding

Focus on Visual Content

 

Since Gen Zers love social media so much, they perceive the information provided in the visual form much better than in the text form. And they crave high-quality content.

 

What does this mean in terms of marketing? There are two things you need to know about creating visual content that will catch the eyes of Zoomers.

 

First of all, they are very confident users of social media, so they see tons of visual content every single day. That is, your content has to be high-quality and eye-popping to drive attention.

 

Secondly, since they are digital natives, their attention spans are much shorter. Namely, an average attention span for Gen Z is only 8 seconds, which is much shorter compared to 12 seconds for Millennials. This fact explains the striking popularity of TikTok among younger users.

 

How to use this in your strategy? Invest in visual content! Provide eye-popping images with your posts and, also, try integrating bite-sized videos with music, effects, and overlays – these are proven to be effective for marketing purposes.

 

To give you an example of great visual content, look at how stylish and bright is the Instagram feed of Guess. Or check out the Fenty Beauty brand’s TikTok page to see their entertaining unpacking videos, makeup tutorials, and other eye-catching content.

 

branding

branding

Higher Purpose

 

The second one of the top characteristics of Gen Zers that we mentioned earlier is “They want brands to really care.” This generation cares about the world. Unlike many other people, those who belong to Generation Z tend to be well aware of environmental, social, economic, political, and other issues that the world faces these days.

 

And they want to see that you care about these issues too.

 

According to a study on Gen Z relations with brands conducted by IBM and The National Retail Federation, over 50% of Gen Zers would choose socially responsible and eco-friendly brands.

 

What does this mean in terms of marketing? This consumer contingent wants brands to represent their values and beliefs. Thus, the best strategy to market to this generation is to define a higher purpose of your business that can make our world a better place.

 

How to use this in your strategy? Find a way for your business to contribute to the world and society, and then communicate your purpose to consumers.

 

A great example of social responsibility as a business asset is shown by Levi Strauss. The company is committed to addressing the issue of water scarcity by reducing the amount of water used to produce its products, and consumers love it!

 

Build Loyalty Through Communication

 

Unlike other consumer contingents, Gen Zers won’t keep buying from you for no reason, just because they liked a product. They don’t want to deal with voiceless and faceless brands. Instead, they want you to interact with them. Thus, to gain their loyalty, your brand needs to talk to them.

 

What does this mean in terms of marketing? According to the study by IBM, three-quarters of people from this generation want brands to respond to their feedback and comments. Moreover, they want to receive timely and personalized responses.

 

How to use this in your strategy? If you want to attract consumers from Generation Z, you need to keep communication at the core of your marketing strategy. To do this right, you should adopt commonly-used social media listening practices and tools that will help you keep track of all mentions and respond ASAP to all consumer comments.

 

A great example of a brand that constantly communicates with its customers and prospects is Too Faced.

 

branding

Team Up With Influencers

 

Generation Z tends to trust the Internet much more than any other generation. And they spend much more time on the web and social networks than, let’s say, watching TV. That’s why they value the opinion of so-called influencers much more than the opinion of traditional celebrities.

 

What does this mean in terms of marketing? According to a report by Morning Consult, about three-quarters of Gen Z users are following digital creators, also known as social media influencers. They trust them and their recommendations. Moreover, that’s how most of them learn about new services or products. That’s why influencer marketing is a big thing these days.

 

How to use this in your strategy? Look for influencers whose audience matches your idea of a perfect customer and collaborate with them.

 

Today, many brands are collaborating with influencers to expand their outreach and drive new customers. For example, here is a shot from a recent partnership with Mercedes Benz by Zach King, a famous American filmmaker and illusionist.

 

branding

The Bottom Line


To market to Generation Z, it’s crucial to understand what they are craving. And to understand that, you need to understand what is driving them and what values they have. Simply put, you need to know their personalities.

 

Hopefully, after reading this article, you have a better understanding of this consumer contingent and its needs and interests.

 

To sum up, here we’ve discussed the top five strategies that are proven to work in marketing for Gen Z. These are:

 

  • Active social media use;
  • High-quality and eye-catching visual content;
  • Finding a good purpose;
  • Timely and effective communication;
  • Influencer marketing.

 

Try integrating these practices into your marketing strategy, and you will win the hearts of Gen Z!

 

Author’s Bio:

Written by LinkxSeo team. This is a team of marketing professionals with over 10 years of experience in marketing. The blog of this team will tell you about useful tricks of the world of SEO and Marketing. Click here to learn more – https://linkxseo.com/

 

inclusive marketing

 

Marketing is the first thing companies think of when trying to attract new customers. However, many major businesses are now looking for other ways to earn customer trust in order to boost their business growth. Marketing has become so saturated with product placement and ads that it no longer seems effective. It turns out, there are better ways for businesses to earn the loyalty of their customers than by bombarding them with advertisements through billboards or commercials on television. Many are turning towards customer experience as a successful alternative to increase brand recognition and boost revenue numbers. After discussion with many SEO Companies & SEO reseller, here we will have a look at how to earn customer trust using inclusive marketing.

 

What is inclusive marketing?


Inclusive marketing is a marketing strategy that focuses on attracting the attention of both potential customers and clients. The purpose of an inclusive marketing campaign, as opposed to traditional advertising, is to attract the interest of all parties involved in the business transaction by including everyone who would be affected by it. For example, if you are providing a service to your consumers, then your advertisement should include information that will help them better understand how your product or service affects them.

 

Inclusive marketing is a powerful way for businesses to boost sales numbers and increase customer satisfaction. The main advantage that inclusive marketing has over other types of advertisements is that it allows the business to show customers the value behind their product or service in a way that can be understood better than typical advertising. This method helps businesses improve existing relationships with customers, while also creating new ones.

 

Tips to earn customer trust with inclusive marketing


Let’s have a look at effective tips to gain higher customer trust in the competitive domain and drive higher profitability:

 

Focus on purchase intent with inclusive marketing:

 

Customers are more likely to engage with marketers who understand their needs, desires, and concerns. Customer purchase intent is an essential element in building customer trust. By creating awareness among potential customers about the business’ product offerings, you can turn this group into loyal customers.

 

Build strong connections:

 

A great way for businesses to build trust is by targeting different segments of the market that would be most likely to use their products or services (i.e., millennials, homeowners). This will help you develop a list of customers who are interested in your brand and want to learn more about it; people who would otherwise not have been exposed to it.

 

Empower your audience:

 

Most customers tend to make decisions based on what other people like them recommend or say about a product. This is why it’s important for them to feel like they can trust you and make the best decision when choosing your business over another. Businesses that give their customers an opportunity to buy their products or services under the influence of trustworthy influencers are more likely to win sales than those who do not.

 

Continuously engage with customers:

 

Businesses must always provide customer-centricity in order to build trust and bond with potential clients. Once you have acquired new customers, it is essential to keep providing personalized service; otherwise, you risk losing sales numbers and having dissatisfied clients. The key here is to understand your audience and adapt marketing strategies accordingly (e.g., target past buyers).

 

Prepare an inclusive keyword strategy:

 

The next step to take after building a strong customer list is to prepare an inclusive keyword strategy that will help amplify your business’s voice and keywords. This includes high volume search terms, long-tail keywords and questions, and negative keywords (i.e., low competition phrases). Implementing these strategies can increase the number of visitors to your website by as much as 30%!

 

Prepare an inclusive image strategy:

 

Inclusive images are another reflection of the brand’s customer-centricity. Avoid generic stock photos because they make it difficult for your consumer to identify with your company and your products. In order to become a preferred option, businesses should focus on creating inclusive images that will build trust with consumers by showing their products or service in use. For example, if you’re selling beauty products, then include an image that shows a woman applying makeup as opposed to a model posing for a camera. Images play a significant role in gathering a higher customer trust among customers.

 

Practice inclusive audience targeting:

 

One of the reasons businesses are unable to get ahead during competitive times is because their advertising strategies lack precision. In order to achieve a higher level of customer trust, it is essential for marketers to identify and target the right audience. For example, consumer reviews have been proven as one of the most influential forms of marketing communication according to Nielsen research. If your organization hasn’t started leveraging reviews from your customers yet, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity to improve brand reputation and increase sales.

 

Wrapping up!


As more enterprises embrace an inclusive marketing approach, businesses can expect to see higher customer trust numbers over the next several years. The key to effective marketing campaigns is creating quality content that will engage consumers and encourage them to purchase your products or services.

 

digital marketing tips

 

You may have heard a lot about the importance of a diverse social media presence these days. In fact, it’s been said that “the more people you can engage with your content, the better.” However, many businesses still struggle to find their niche or feel like they’re missing out on something if they don’t use every single platform available. It doesn’t have to be that way. The truth is there are plenty of ways for your business to grow just by using one or two platforms well. There are many things you can do to grow your business and boost your sales. Sometimes it may seem like a daunting task, but with the right tools and advice, you can make it happen. Here are eight of the best ways to help get you started.

 

1 – Utilize SEO Techniques


SEO (search engine optimization) can make a huge difference to an online business. If you want people to find your business and see what it has to offer, then SEO is the way forward. It’s not as complicated as it sounds. There are lots of resources available that show you how to do everything you need. According to Local Digital, a few of the more popular SEO techniques include creating excellent blog posts and content, as well as publishing relevant information. They also cover everything from building a site and using keywords to getting yourself ranked on Google. 

 

2 – Create A Successful PPC Campaign


PPC (pay-per-click) campaigns can be one of the quickest ways to promote your business online, and they don’t have to cost a fortune; there are lots of companies out there that will help you get started for little or no cost at all. You can then set a budget that works for you and try out different keywords to see what gets the most attention, and what works best to get you the conversions you want.

 

3 – Create A Diverse Social Media Presence


Social media is a great way to promote your business and make people aware of what you have to offer, but it has to be done in a way that works for you. There are many different social media platforms that you can choose to use, so it’s all about finding one or two that work for your business. A few ideas include taking advantage of Facebook groups, joining Twitter chats, and making the most out of every post on Instagram.

 

4 – Use PR To Your Advantage


Public relations (or PR) can be a great way to promote your business and get some fantastic exposure, but it doesn’t have to cost you a fortune. If you find the right company, then they may be able to offer you some free advice and guidance or at least keep your costs low. Once you’ve found the right company, it’s all about working together and setting targets and goals that will allow your business to grow.

 

5 – Give Something Away


Everyone loves getting something for free and giving away samples or free products is one of the best ways to grow your business. It doesn’t have to cost you a lot of money either – there are lots of great platforms out there that allow you to post your freebies online, and then give you great analytics that shows you where your products are being seen. This is invaluable for helping to grow your business because it gives you the opportunity to create products that will work for your business.

 

6 – Get Educated On SEO


As we mentioned earlier, there are many free places where you can get advice on how to improve your SEO skills, which will help you to grow your business online. Whether you sign up for some courses, watch some tutorials on YouTube, or find a company that can help you understand SEO better, it’s important to learn the skills first hand or at least to find someone you can trust. Once you understand what’s involved and how SEO works, it becomes a lot easier for your business to grow.

 

7 – Create A Blog, Make Videos And Start a Podcast


We mentioned the importance of creating a blog earlier, and it’s one of the best ways to improve your SEO skills and get your business noticed online. It’s also a great way to interact with customers since they can leave comments that will help you to learn more about them and their needs. Ask for feedback, offer to answer questions, or simply publish posts that will help people get more from your business. A few blog ideas include publishing useful information, writing about new products or services, and building a community. Videos and podcasts are a great way to provide more in-depth information for your customers, and they can be a fantastic way to promote your business. It doesn’t have to cost you anything either – as long as you have a camera or smartphone, you can get started right away. Upload your videos or podcasts to YouTube and other sites, or simply share them directly with people who need the information.

 

8 – Optimize Your Site For Mobile


We’ve mentioned the importance of optimizing your site for mobile devices a few times already, and it’s one of those things that can really make a difference to your business. Make sure you know how to do it properly, and always look for new ways to improve the experience across all devices. Mobile is important for small businesses, so it’s essential that you know what you’re doing and why mobile optimization matters so much.

 

The 8 effective ways to grow your business and boost sales that we’ve mentioned in this article are just a few of the many options available. Whether you want to take charge of your finances, become more confident in your skills, or get where you need to be, these tips will help make it happen. But remember: every situation is different, so always consider what’s best for you before making any decisions. Our team would love to partner with you on all things marketing – from SEO strategies and social media management to content creation and design services – so don’t hesitate to reach out if there’s anything else we can do.

marketing rockstar

 

Modern technology never slows down and only advances faster over time. Technology is tied to almost every facet of our daily lives, and keeping up with basic consumer-level technology can be tricky. However, those wishing to keep up with technology and digital advancement in the professional world have even more to keep track of. Tech never stops, which means digital marketing also never stops advancing, changing, and evolving. This continuous progress is not necessarily a bad thing, but it can make life harder for up and coming professionals trying to break into the industry.

 

It can be hard to know where to start, especially outside of a formal education setting. Thankfully, the ever-expanding digital marketing world has plenty of ways for a new person to jump in. Since digital marketing takes place online, the training and educational content for digital marketing is all captured in online media. Whether you scrap news headlines to find new information, read through more formal instructional design, or take a different approach, there are various ways to learn what you need to know to get started as a digital marketing professional. 

 

Watch And Learn


One of the best ways to learn anything is to watch or observe a professional do it. If you can find a mentor to teach you the ways of digital marketing, take that offer, but not everyone is lucky enough to find a one on one teacher. However, you can still watch professionals in action without committing to a personal mentorship. Find a company or agency who’s content you like and want to emulate. Every marketer has their own style and flair, so find an example of what you want to be as a professional and work to match it in your own mock work. 

 

Up To Date With The Latest Trends And Practices


You would not hire a doctor who uses medical procedures from five years ago, nor would you hire a digital marketer who uses out-of-date trends to drive plans or campaigns. The digital marketing realm moves fast, but professionals working in the field are expected to keep up. Learn about algorithm updates, SEO changes, new technologies that affect marketing, AI data collection and analysis, and much more are all aspects of digital marketing. You don’t need to be an expert in every facet of digital marketing, but if you want to join the industry, you will be expected to have sufficient current working knowledge of trends and practices. 

 

There are plenty of places to learn about digital marketing. Major news outlets typically won’t cover digital marketing events unless it is a story that affects more than the marketing world. To find digital marketing stories and news, you will have to look for more tailored outlets. Follow marketing companies and professionals on LinkedIn to build a network that will fill your feed with helpful information. There are reputable marketing websites that are more than happy to show you educational content, but be sure you are learning from a qualified source and not a random person with a pretty looking blog. 

 

Learn The Tools Of The Trade


Digital marketers do not work with just their brains and Google Docs, but many people might not think there are tools of that particular trade. Every company will use a different collection of tools, but some tools and programs will always be good to have a familiarity with. Slack, Google Suite, and Airtable are some of the most common organizational and communication tools for modern businesses, especially those dealing with an online business. AHRefs, HubSpot, SEMRush, and other tools make up the toolbox of digital marketers, but new tools are invented every year, and some companies use proprietary in-house software. Some of these tools have free trials, so you can learn about the software without shelling out money for a full license. Google Analytics remains a popular data analysis tool that is also free for anyone to try. 

 

Digital marketing can be a daunting field to try and break into, but it can be done. There are various ways to learn what you need to know to join the ranks of a professional digital marketer. Learning from someone already working in the field is a fantastic idea, but it can be hard to find as working professionals have their own lives to worry about. However, just because you are not getting one on one teaching doesn’t mean you can’t learn from the best.

 

Observe what agencies and brands you like are doing for marketing, then try to emulate what you like. Keep up with industry news, trends, and new practices, so you are always up to date. Test out and become familiar with the trade’s standard tools because knowing how to use marketing software can be a whole separate battle. Learn how to interpret data and navigate charts along with your other research to become the best digital marketer possible.

Sales & Marketing

 

Although sales and marketing differ significantly in their scope and methods applied, they both have the same goal; ensuring the growth and security of the business. With technology causing major advances to business and business operations, organizations must make the most of their sales and marketing processes to attract prospects and compete favorably in a harsh environment. One way to achieve this is fostering collaboration between the two departments. Since they are both critical points of interaction between the business and its customers, they will produce better results when supporting each other as opposed to working independently.

 

Sales involves the direct interaction where a salesperson talks to prospective customers to persuade them into making a purchase. This could be done face to face, over the phone or via digital media such as social media and email.

 

Marketing, on the other hand, involves the more indirect holistic process through which an organization creates awareness of its product and brand to its target consumers. This is rarely on a one-on-one basis.

 

Below are some of the ways you can foster collaboration between sales and marketing to push your organizations to greater heights:

 

Holding Collaborative Meetings between the Teams


Normalizing the holding of joint meetings between the sales and marketing people will work to the advantage of both teams. As they operate in different fields, they have different ideas on how to reach customers better. These could be exchanged in such forums. A smooth flow of information between the two departments will allow the sales team to inform the marketing team what is and what isn’t working, allowing them to adjust their strategies accordingly.

 

Joint meetings also present an opportunity for both teams to set goals and strategies. When these are formulated collaboratively, each department will have a definite picture of what is expected of them. There will also be a more precise way of measuring the success or failure of sales and marketing strategies. These goals can either be intra-team or inter-team. Inter-team goals promote healthy competition, resulting in positive outcomes for the company.

 

Creating Accurate Customer Personas Together


Knowing and understanding your target customer is especially important in establishing a long-lasting relationship between your brand and customers. By creating a customer persona, the sales team will be addressing the same characteristics targeted by the marketing team, leading to greater success. When there is discordance in the customer personas between the two departments, you will find that the feature advertised by the marketing team is different from the one addressed by the sales team. Such confusion will lead to the loss of important prospects.

 

To avoid such problems, ensure your sales and marketing department bring together their knowledge and experience with the customers to create an accurate customer profile. With such a profile, both teams will then have an easy time determining what to target when dealing with particular customers, increasing their success rates.

 

Using Marketing To Pave the Way for Salespeople


Getting a customer to purchase a new product is one of the most challenging tasks for salespeople. When working alone, the sales team will have to attract attention, create awareness, make their pitch, and make a sale all in one go. This makes their work difficult and will, in most cases, not bear a lot of fruits. It would be easier working with a customer who already knows about the product and only requires convincing. This is where marketing comes in.

 

You should ensure that your sales team visit areas where your marketing team have already touched to make their work easier. Customers that have heard about a product before will be easier to convince that those hearing about it for the first time. It is therefore important that you use your marketing team to pave the way, leaving the sales team to close the deal.

 

Use Sales to Help Marketing Better Connect with Customers


The sales team spend most of their time interacting with prospective clients. They are therefore in the best position to see into the needs and tastes of the customers. This deep insight into the customer can be used to make marketing more effective. Using such information, the marketing team will be able to address the needs of the customers better in their strategies. When the customers feel understood and spoken for, they will respond better to your marketing campaign, making it more effective in the long run.

 

Sales Can Provide Feedback On Marketing Strategies


Without feedback, there is no telling apart which aspects of your marketing strategy are working and which ones are a drain to your resources. If you wish to grow, it is therefore important that you get to know how your customers are responding to your marketing material. Since marketing is done on a broad scale, your marketing team can’t get an accurate picture of the consumers’ reactions. Your salespeople are in a better position to obtain such information as they interact with the customers at a more personal level.

 

They could interact with customers and get their opinion on the product, the brand and the effectiveness of the marketing strategies. When such information is relayed to those formulating the marketing strategies, they will be able to identify the areas that are working and those in need of improvement.

 

Both your sales and marketing departments must strive to improve their effectiveness for the growth of the brand. While they can both operate independently to achieve their goals, getting these two departments to work together will make them an unstoppable customer attraction force that will give your business a significant competitive advantage. In a nutshell, the two entities need each other to maximize their output.

 

Author Bio: This article was written by Ciaran Houricane of H-Training. Ciaran works with sales and marketing professionals to develop their skills and improve their results.

Marketing Budget

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Coronavirus has not only left individuals and families worried about their financial futures and employment statuses; small and large businesses are feeling the money pinch at the moment as well, with many of them cutting running expenses wherever possible – including their digital marketing budget.

 

While it may be necessary for businesses to cut or even eliminate some expenses during this challenging time, this doesn’t mean that your marketing efforts need to be halted. In fact, now is the time for you to ramp up your online marketing as much as possible and the 10 tips below will help ensure that your business remains visible online during these challenging times.

 

Make it Easy for Clients to Find you Online


The days of searching through the Yellow Pages to find contact details for a business are long gone, with more individuals than ever before searching online for the products and services they require. As such, this is the time to ensure that it is as easy as possible for potential clients to connect with you.

 

If your business has little to no online presence, now is the time to rectify that by having a professional website set up and establishing the relevant social media profiles.

 

2. Engage and Connect with Clients via Social Media


Many business owners think that simply having social media profiles set up will be enough to help their marketing efforts. However, social media has become more popular than ever because of families living under lockdown – in many cases, this is the only source of news and information that some individuals have.

 

As such, it’s crucial for businesses to interact with their followers on social media. Creating polls or even just sharing an inspirational post can be highly effective – especially when people have more free time on their hands.

 

3. Keep Ahead of Competitors


While so many businesses remain closed, many owners and managers tend to forget about their digital marketing. However, this is in fact the ideal time to ensure that your company’s website is not only up to date with the latest security features; it’s crucial to check that product and service offerings, as well as contact details are correct. Doing this will put your business ahead of several competitors.

 

4. Local SEO is More Important than Ever


With more individuals than ever before shopping as close to home as possible, ensuring that local SEO is active on your website is crucial. After all, you’d like to do everything possible to attract clients in your geo region.

 

Although Google My Business (GMB) is not currently publishing online reviews, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t still try and submit any. In fact, submitting reviews at this time could enable them to be published as soon as GMB returns to normal operation.

 

5. Improve your Online Presence


Even if your business already has an online presence, there is virtually always room for improvement in this regard. For instance, if you sell a wide range of essential and luxury items, now will be the time to market more of the essentials and fewer luxuries. Many consumers will only be purchasing essential at the moment due to cash constraints, so making these items as easy as possible to find on your website will help boost sales.

 

6. Start a Blog


Incorporating a blog into your existing company website can help drive additional traffic. However, it’s no longer good enough to simply slap up a few posts that have been stuffed with relevant keywords. Website visitors expect to learn something new when visiting your company blog, so ensure that you hire experienced and competent writers.

 

7. Don’t Underestimate Video Marketing


More than 75% of internet traffic consists of video content these days, meaning that your business could be losing out on valuable online exposure if you haven’t incorporated videos into your online marketing strategy yet.

 

Even a few short videos explaining your product and service offerings will go a long way to boost your company’s online presence. Over time, it may even be possible to monetize your videos on YouTube.

 

8. Respond to Online Reviews


These days, online reviews play a huge part in marketing your business because several individuals rely on them to obtain information before making purchases. By actively responding to online reviews that have been left for your business, you’ll show new and existing clients that you care. Keep in mind that any responses to negative reviews should be kept strictly professional.

 

9. Use Pay Per Click (PPC) Advertising


While more people aren’t working because of lockdown restrictions, it provides business owners with an ideal opportunity to use PPC advertising.

 

Although you will have to make a small investment to use PPC advertising, you’ll still be able to control your marketing budget and get the word out about your business while many others have temporarily ceased their marketing efforts.

 

10. Finish your Digital To-do List


If you’re not commuting to and from the office at the moment, chances are that you may have a little more free time on your hands than normal. Instead of wasting it by zoning out in front of the TV, use this time to see if any potential marketing opportunities have perhaps fallen by the wayside during the busier times.

 

For example, your website may be in desperate need of a makeover, but you might have been hesitant to have it offline while this takes place. However, now will be the ideal time to have this service performed so that your site can be ready to serve your clients as soon as you reopen.

 

Another option here is to have a conversion rate optimization audit performed on your website. This will help ensure that calls to action (CTAs) are doing their job of converting site visitors to paying clients.

 

Although trying to incorporate all of the abovementioned strategies into your company’s website and marketing strategies may seem overwhelming, this need not be the case. If you’d like to give your company website the online edge during this time, contact our experts today.

onboarding marketing

Spending a little extra time onboarding new customers shows them they made the right decision choosing your company and that you care about their experience with your brand, even after you’ve taken their money.

Most of the studies about onboarding relate to welcoming new employees into your company. Although specific research about onboarding customers is available, customer retention statistics tell us a lot about why consumers stick with a brand. In the United States, about 40 percent of revenue for most brands comes from repeat purchases. Spending a bit of extra time on a new customer ensures they understand your brand mission and make a connection with you that may last for years to come.

Just how can you onboard new customers without spending all your time on follow-up, though? Fortunately, there are some clear marketing techniques and tips that naturally lead to better customer retention. Here are eight of them.

1. Improve Communication


A big equation in customer experience (CX) is how well you communicate with your customers. Customers should feel that they aren’t just another face in the crowd, but a person your company cares about. Communication should be easy and available, such as adding live chat and engaging on social media. Notice how many of the top brands today spend time answering concerns on social media or giving a shout out to their top customers.

Long John

Long John Silver’s has a strong presence on Instagram, where they promote different foods they serve in their restaurants. In the post above, they offer a photo of their food and then add a comment about liking thick cuts, which references a popular song. People chime into the conversation, and LJS engages them by responding with a heart emoji or short replies. Responding to comments on social media shows new followers they want to start a discussion.

2. Create Content for Audience Segments


Part of your inbound marketing strategy should focus on creating specific content for different audience segments based on where they come to you from and the likely buyer persona. If you gain a lead from your Facebook page, you may know you’ve targeted a particular type of buyer on that social media platform and that they want a solution to one of two problems. You can then gear the content on your landing page to solving those exact problems for the user.

3. Offer Free Stuff


Be generous with your new leads by offering them something free. The more generous you can be, the better, and some studies show that those who receive something free then want to reciprocate by ordering from you or sharing your business with others. One example might be offering a free guide if they sign up for your newsletter, then following up a week later with a free bonus guide the customer wasn’t expecting. Offering more than expected shows you care about their success and want them to have all the information needed to move forward. You could also offer a free estimate or consultation to new clients.

new city moving

New City Moving offers a free quote so potential clients can see exactly what services are included and get a ballpark price range for help with their moving needs. Once you submit your information about the number of rooms, where you’re moving and the date, the company responds by either phone, text or email within a day and gives you a detailed estimate providing everything included and info on any add-ons you might want.

4. Provide One-on-One Interaction


Have you ever bought a product and experienced such excellent customer service that you vow to do business with that company going forward? Good customer experience (CX) isn’t easy to define — many elements play into the overall impression a person has of your brand. However, there are some clear things you can do when onboarding new customers to ensure they have a good experience.

First, ask them if they are satisfied with their purchase and if they need anything else. This simple question helps solve many problems before they become serious concerns. Second, reach out and thank them for their business and let them know you appreciate it. The fine art of a simple thank you has been lost in modern times, so letting your customers know you are grateful goes a long way toward goodwill. Finally, have a customer service rep follow up with new customers via phone call, email or text message. The contact should be personal and refer to the specific purchase made by the customer.

5. Progress Bar


A progress bar encourages your new customer to continue the process of ordering or to sign up for an account. The user sees progress as they move along and an end to the information they need to input. A progress bar also helps them track where they are if they must leave and return at a later time.

etsy

Etsy’s process to help new sellers get a shop up and running uses a progress bar to show people where they are in the process. Note how the circles turn solid and gain a check mark as you finish that step in the process. You also know exactly how many steps are left to finish setting up your new online store.

6. Save Your Customers’ Time & Effort


People today are extremely busy. If you save them time and effort, they’re much more likely to stay with you for the long haul. Add features that save them time such as allowing them to hook their account into an already exciting platform, such as Facebook or Google. Linking up to popular platforms prevents the user from having to input basic info they already have saved and allows them to log in with a single click of the button.

7. Draw Attention to the Most Important Details


For businesses offering a service, onboarding may be particularly important. The user needs to understand best practices and how to get the most out of their new registration. Draw attention to some of the most important details with pop-up messages, videos or a series of steps the user should take to become more familiar with the service. For products, onboarding may relate more to the use of the product and include videos and user manuals.

wistia

Wistia onboards new clients by offering a Getting Started With Video series that explains how to use their system and best practices. Even if you’ve never used a promotional video before, you’ll understand the basics of what you need to do once you complete the series.

8. Acknowledge Customer Success


If a customer reaches out to you via email, phone or social media and shares a positive story about their experience with your brand, celebrate that success. If you offer a service for other businesses, give their brand a shout out on your social media pages and invite people to check out what they’re doing and why they’re winning.

On the other hand, if you run a business to consumer (B2C) model and a customer lets you know your gadget saved them 15 minutes a day, take the time to send them a note and tell them how happy you are to hear that. It’s the little efforts that show customers you care about them and keep their business long-term.

Let Users Skip Steps


Even though most of your new customers may need a walkthrough of the product or service features, some will be past customers who’ve come back or people who are particularly tech savvy and don’t need in-depth explanations. Let them skip steps that they already understand and avoid frustration.

Onboarding is a journey, and laying out the process of a customer’s journey from the minute they land on your page to after they make a purchase allows you to connect with your customers and develop lifelong relationships.

Lexie Lu is a designer and writer. She loves researching trends in the web and graphic design industry. She writes weekly on Design Roast and can be followed on Twitter @lexieludesigner

2019 Marketing Plan

 

Are you struggling to figure out your marketing plan for 2019? Marketing changes from year to year. Staying on top of trends and swapping out things that don’t work with new ideas leads to success. Looking into the next year allows you to plan your marketing calendar and try to guess trends before the fact so you can get ready ahead of time.

 

There are more than 30 million small businesses in the United States, so if you want to gain a competitive edge, you’ll need to predict what customers want at any given time. Make a few predictions and get out ahead of the competition. The more prepared you are for 2019, the more successful your marketing campaigns will be.

 

If you’re wondering just what marketing will look like in 2019, here are eight predictions to form your marketing strategy:

 

1. Location-Based Marketing Expands


As more small businesses form an online presence, location-based marketing will become even more important and targeted. The ability to hone in on people in a specific area is one of the big advantages to advertising on social media and search engine giants. Instead of reaching every person in the world who likes cats, for example, you can reach only those people on the south side of your town who like cats.

 

2. Voice-Based Searches Take Over


The number of people searching via voice commands is growing, so expect to see more of this in 2019. Studies predict that by 2020, about 50 percent of all search commands will be voice-based. Google’s word recognition accuracy continues to improve dramatically, allowing people to conduct searches without getting crazy results that don’t relate to the words actually spoken.

 

3. Promotional Products Take on Unique Looks


A trend from 2018 that will continue into 2019 is promotional products with unique colors, textures and patterns. Not only are these products functional, but they are also aesthetically pleasing. You’ll also see tech gadgets as promotional items. Personalized items such as PopSockets, power banks and charging cords are highly appreciated by tech-oriented customers.

 

4. Live Video Increases in Popularity


In 2016, 2017 and 2018, live video grew steadily in popularity. Expect to see demand for live video increase even more as streaming becomes faster and more commonplace. If the video involves a favorite celebrity, people are more likely to pay for the experience. Free videos are still quite popular, too, so create the best video possible and make sure it offers high value.

 

Adding a live video to your social media allows users to share your content and get to know you on a more personal level. Some studies predict that by 2019, about 85 percent of internet traffic will be videos. If you haven’t added videos to your marketing plan, now is the time to do so.

 

5. Chatbots Will Become Even More Common


A lot of companies use chatbots to respond to social media posts and visitors to their website. However, we disagree that this is a positive trend. Instead of investing in chatbots, it’s better to spend those resources developing a personal relationship with your customers and reaching them on a more intimate level.

 

Imagine ordering food or booking a vacation all without talking to another person. While most people don’t feel negative about chatbots, using a live person allows you to customize the user experience. Of course, you could also try adding a few chatbots for tasks that eat up your time but don’t significantly impact user experience.

 

6. Virtual and Augmented Reality Grow in Popularity


More brands are adding virtual reality and augmented reality to their marketing repertoire. If you want an example of how commonplace VR and AR is becoming, think about the “Pokémon Go” game that became so popular. People ran everything to find Pokémon in this AR world.

 

The combination of a mobile app and VR or AR has become possible as cellphones have advanced beyond simple devices that were difficult to use. The power of a mini-computer in the user’s hand allows them to invite customers into a store, try out a new retail design or interact with other game players.

 

7. GDPR Compliance Takes Center Stage


In the spring of 2018, the EU’s GDPR went into effect. The new privacy rules impacted every site that collected any type of personal information. Although warnings have been issued and GDPR compliances should be in place, many small businesses don’t realize they need to update their privacy policies or notify users of tracking cookies.

 

By 2019, expect a clear focus to be on compliance. This means that if you want to drive traffic to a page on your site, you need to ensure it’s clear that you comply.

 

8. Influencer Marketing Increases


Between 2013 and 2016, the number of influencer marketing searches went up 90 times. Strongarm marketing tactics simply don’t work with today’s savvy consumers. Instead of doing heavy self-promotion in 2019, reach out to influencers in your niche.

 

Brands are allocating more money to influencer marketing. Instead of spending time, money and resources figuring out advertising on Twitter or Facebook, businesses find an influencer and either pay them or team up with them to have their brand mentioned.

 

The softer approach of having an influencer mention your brand allows you to focus on creating the best customer experience possible while the social media expert spends time talking up your brand.

 

Marketing Predictions


The future of marketing is exciting. Expect to see more videos, increased virtual reality and less human interaction. The help of advanced tools allows you to stay ahead of your competitors. Instead of investing in ads that never pan out, you’ll know the best times to run different types.

 

2019’s trends will look somewhat similar to 2018’s marketing trends. Don’t plan on massive changes but do expect to better define the way you market your business to the public.

 

Author

Lexie Lu is a designer and writer. She loves researching trends in the web and graphic design industry. She writes weekly on Design Roast and can be followed on Twitter @lexieludesigner.

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