Bothell Web Development and Digital Marketing Tactics 2015

Web Development and Digital Marketing Tactics 2015

The world of the internet is constantly changing, and it is something that businesses and individuals must stay on top of if they really want to succeed in the long run with their online endeavors. Staying on the fast paced cutting edge of web development and digital marketing can be very tough if you are not finding the right information. There are many different places where you can get quality information about the new and upcoming advancements in digital marketing and web development. Here in this article we will share with you some of the new and improved tactics for having a great online presence in 2015.

When looking for the best Bothell web development, there are a few different things to look at. You need to find a company that is on the cutting edge who is willing to help you take your company to the next level with a very solid online presence. The best Bothell web development companies will help you to create a website that will please your customers and give you a very professional look and feel. The first impression of your company speaks volumes, and your website is a great way to make that great first impression.

Digital marketing is something that is changing on a very rapid basis. There are more and more advancements in the world of digital marketing each year that must be taken into account. Individuals and businesses can either learn the tactics of digital marketing themselves, or they can hire a company to take care of this for them. This is a choice that will have to be made by each individual and business. It could be very beneficial for a company to have their digital marketing be in house, while a different company would have much greater results with outsourcing this work. Digital marketing is much more than just SEO. There is so much to look into with social media and other creative outlets in our digital age. There are more and more potential customers who are available online today, but reaching these individuals effectively is a very crucial thing to do.

The 3 Most Common Mistakes in Digital Marketing by Startups

Mistake 1: Not Focusing Your Digital Marketing On Business Objectives

If your startup is posting on Facebook, you need to defend why your startup chooses to spend their time and energy on that digital marketing activity from a business perspective. It may be great for your ego that you got 10 shares on a post, but how do those shares actually lead to profit?

Don’t forget that just because you are an amazing tech startup that you are also still a business.

Just like any other business, your startup needs to achieve revenue. The way to make achieve this revenue with digital marketing is to have all of your activities either achieve or move users towards achieving concrete business objectives.

The best way to correct the mistake of digital marketing without business objectives is to create a marketing funnel. Since not all of your digital marketing results in an immediate sale, this marketing funnel will have a series of steps, each one of which is a small business objectives (getting an email address, users filling out forms, etc.) which lead to your ultimate business objective which is usually a sale.

Once you have mapped out your marketing funnel, you have shifted your mindset towards viewing your digital marketing through a business lens. Use this lens to see what digital marketing activities actually move the needle. If the digital marketing activity does not move users towards your business objective, you can either stop spending your time and money on that particular activity or reconfigure your strategy and test to see if it is possible to achieve business objectives with it.

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Mistake 2: Trying To Market On Too Many Channels

Instead of trying to utilize a selection of digital marketing channels effectively, startups often attempt to have a presence on every channel and end up executing them all poorly.

This is how it happens:

You sign up your startup for accounts in all of the social networks and frantically drop in, make a lot of noise, and do not interact according to the norms and the standards of that particular channel. Instead of adding value to the conversation, your startup looks like a jerk and turns potential customers off.

The mistake is that your presence on these networks is sporadic and doesn’t allow you to understand the community and authentically connect with the users. You shouldn’t necessarily be sending the same message on Twitter as you would on email or Facebook or Instagram. However, you do not have the time nor the staff to interact on all of the networks in a way that engages visitors and moves your startup towards business objectives.

The best way to correct this mistake is to begin your digital marketing with one or two channels and spend your time and effort becoming industry leaders on that channel. Once you have mastered a select group of channels, you may want to expand, or you may find that you can sustain your startup’s growth on those one or two channels.

To choose the optimal channel for your startup, find out which channels your customers already frequent. Research and spend time on those channels to become a valuable member of the community that adds value with your digital marketing messages.

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Common Mistakes in Digital Marketing by Startups | SEJ

Mistake 3: Trying To Market To Everyone

If you attempt to target everyone, you target no one. This is a mistake that I learned early on (the hard way!).

The average consumer is exposed to 5,000 marketing messages per day, which means your digital marketing messages need to stand out by being the most tailored to your audience. If your startup attempts to market to an audience that is too diverse with a wide range of wants, needs, and desires you will be unable to craft digital marketing messages that resonate with anyone. Additionally, with this large audience your marketing messages is competing against a much larger pool of competitors. You want to target a narrow audience (sometimes called a niche) and create messages tailored to them.

You can narrow your target audience by various demographics and psychographics. Demographics are quantitative variables such as age, gender, income, location, and income. Psychographics are qualitative measurements and are often self-defined such as fans of the Patriots, investors, or environmentalists.

Narrowing your message down creates a feeling for that audience member that it is just for them. For example, if you are a startup that provides social media marketing to Crossfit gyms you could narrow your targeting by simply changing the title of your blog, if it was originally titled 7 Things Your Business Needs To Know About Marketing, it would be more tailored by changing the title to 7 Things Your Gym Needs To Know About Facebook Marketing and would be best tailored by titling it 7 Things Your Gym Needs To Know About Facebook Marketing. Even though CrossFit gym owners are business owners, narrowing and tailoring the message makes it resonate more with them.

From experience I have found that tailoring marketing messages to a narrow audience:

  • Increases the click-through rates of PPC ads (which increases their quality score and lowers the cost per click)
  • Increases the return on ad spend
  • Increases email open rates
  • Increase the amount of feedback on the social networks

Bonus tip: It is important to think about who your target market actually is. For example, if your startup is a site that connects tutors with underperforming school children, initially you may create digital marketing messages tailored to the kids who are underperforming. However, the kids aren’t the ones with the purchasing power: your actual audience is the parents. You would want to target parents of underperforming kids for your marketing with messages that resonate with them.

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As a startup, you have a limited budget and limited time to perform your digital marketing. You do not have the financial and staff cushion of larger companies and must be especially careful to avoid mistakes. By tying your digital marketing activities to business objectives, choosing your digital marketing channels specifically, and targeting a specific audience, you avoid three of the most common mistakes startups make with digital marketing and will begin to see profits increase.

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Let’s Get Personal for Valentine’s Day

This Valentine’s Day it’s all about drawing from the data available to boost personalization in your marketing. Are you ready?

What does Valentine’s Day have to do with data, analytics, and the drive to personalize marketing? A whole lot these days! The day we express love with flowers, gifts, and heart-shaped boxes of chocolates poses a familiar challenge to marketers: how to woo busy consumers using all the data and technology at our disposal. So, what better holiday to explore brands’ increasing fascination with personalization and 1:1 marketing?

Let’s first define personalization in marketing terms. It is driven by a desire for relevance and results in ongoing, individualized interactions with the consumer. As these interactions grow, so too does our knowledge and ability to tailor a more engaging conversation. It’s really an opportunity for continuous learning to foster long-term relationships. That kind of personalization, of course, requires accurate, granular, and up-to-date profiles about people and their preferences as they engage with brands across the myriad of channels and devices. That’s where the new tools and techniques around data management and analytics come in. They can enable us to better understand where an individual researches for products and services, conducts price comparisons, pours over reviews, and eventually chooses to make their purchase. It is often not love at first sight, but rather a multichannel/multi-device dance.

When it comes to delivering a personalized experience, every touch point is indeed critical in executing on a successful omnichannel marketing strategy. (See the recent ClickZ column “In Pursuit of the Universal Customer Experience: Omnichanel vs. Multichannel Marketing.“) Mobile engagement on tablets and smartphones is no exception. It’s one of the most recent, and also more challenging of channels for marketers. The opportunities for 1:1 marketing in mobile are nearly endless, and marketing for Valentine’s Day gives us a kind of “case study” to explore some of them. How important is mobile? Forrester predicts that by 2018, tablets will make up an extraordinary 42 percent of e-commerce, and smartphones will comprise 11 percent. Marketing today is still heavily PC-centric. But, that’s changing fast before our very eyes.

Mobile Engagement Blooms on Valentine’s Day

Maxymiser conducted a study last year to see how men and women shop online or with mobile devices as Valentine’s Day approached. The findings are worth taking to the bank in 2015 when the National Retail Federation predicts $18.9 billion in spending.

Maxymiser put it succinctly with the study’s title: “Valentine’s Day: Retail’s Love Affair With Digital, as the company looked at how men and women approach online and mobile shopping in advance of the holiday. Here are a few highlights from the study:

  • 32 percent of men and 30 percent of women are more likely to click on targeted offers when buying a Valentine’s Day gift.
  • 78 percent of women and 73 percent of men seek personalization to engage online and via mobile to support their Valentine’s Day gift buying for secondary purchases.
  • Men and women differ among preferences for mobile devices and content, women opting more often for tablets over smartphones and seeking price comparison information to a greater extent than men.
  • More than half of men (52 percent) and 42 percent of women said that they would not wait more than five seconds for pages or images to load. This is not a forgiving environment for brands.

The bottom line is that shoppers are not all created the same. They respond to personalized offers that take into consideration when they are shopping (last-minute or well before a holiday), on what device, and the importance of triggers like free delivery. It’s all grist for the mill. What’s clear is that there is huge opportunity to customize and personalize offers on insights supported by testing (A/B and multivariate) and other analytics applied to data.

A final word on mobile – given first impressions do count! To engage with people on tablets and smartphones, brands use Web-based, Internet-enabled apps optimized for mobile, as well as native mobile apps installed directly on a device. FTD, for example, optimizes for mobile orders of flowers using a Web-based app. In contrast, FTD Mercury Mobile is an example of a native app available both from Apple and Android. It’s important to understand the ways to optimize mobile apps to ensure consumers can engage with your brand successfully and find the mobile experience a satisfying one. (See the recent ClickZ column “The Internet of Things Starts With Agility Everywhere” for more information about mobile app optimization.)

The End Game

Deep insight at the individual level is the essential first step in 1:1 marketing. Consumers expect brands to actually know them and be aware of how they interact across each touch point. One of the biggest obstacles standing in the way of personalization to date has been the lack of a cross-channel, cross-platform integrated view of consumer behavior at a highly granular level. Fortunately, that’s changing with new data management and marketing optimization solutions that collect and analyze multichannel data at the user level data to drive content relevance, timeliness, and targeted offers.

“Remember me and speak to me as the individual that I am.” That’s what any consumer is ultimately asking for when they engage with a brand. And when we do listen and act accordingly, we can get involved in a happy and lasting relationship. Now, that’s indeed a Valentine’s Day wish come true.

 

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Developing Hybrid Marketing Skills

The search marketing environment has evolved and converged to such an extent that in order to survive and succeed, marketers now need adopt a whole new set of working habits.

Search is no longer the silo that it once was and the modern-day search marketer now has to build a whole new set of hybrid skills sets to keep themselves, and their organizations, ahead of the digital marketing curve.

The convergence of paid, owned, and earned media has meant that the relationship between marketers and consumers has become significantly more complex. For example – according to the Guardian article on Google’s ZMOT, on average a consumer engages with 18.2 pieces of online content before making a final purchase decision.

Organizations, agencies, and consultants, as a result, can struggle to keep their skills, learning, and training up to date and in line with such a rapidly developing and complex digital marketing ecosystem.

Did you know that 40 percent of marketers want to reinvent themselves but only 14 percent know how?

Hybrid Marketers

The answer lies in developing cross-channel marketing experience and building hybrid marketing skills and competencies.

Hybrid marketers are (in essence) converged media marketers who are highly proficient writers, analytical, and tech-savvy and have strong competencies in business, IT, and human behavior.

The Converged Media Mind

Two different sides, or hemispheres, of the brain are responsible for different ways of thinking and as soon as we look into the difference between the left and right brain hemispheres, it clearly becomes apparent why some people are more technically driven than others and why gaps in talent in some organizations widen. It is also the reason why, for example, SEO and content marketers battle for ownership.

Left-brain marketers who tend to be analytical collide with right-brained marketers who think holistically and are more open to conceptual thinking. The converged media mind that hybrid marketer’s possess utilizes both the left and right part of the brain and applies this thinking to the appropriate channel with the appropriate approach and subsequent metric.

From the diagram below you can see that analytical and technical PPC and SEO disciplines utilize left-brain thinking and right-brain thinking can be associated with social and creative content.

hybrid-mind

Hybrid marketers understand and view the role of search, social, content, and digital media, in the above, as integrated holistically but fragmented by skillsets.

People who master hybrid marketing can:

  1. Understand the different marketing channels
  2. Identify a point of overlap/convergence
  3. Manage and matrix manage people and departments who have different skill sets – they bring skills, people, and departments together and foster collaboration

The result is a happy, motivated, and successful set of team members who do not only just understand the multiple components of integrated marketing campaigns – they understand each other.

In my next post I will tall through how best to set up attribution systems for content and hybrid marketers. After all, we should also optimize for people and ensure “organizational attribution” systems are set in place to allow hybrid marketers to measure performance and flourish through an organization.

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Facebook Expands Mobile Geo-Targeting With “Place Tips”

The social media giant’s new feature will deliver location-based content for businesses.

Facebook is testing a new feature called “Place Tips,” where the company will use signals from cellular networks, Wi-Fi, as well as GPS and beacons to deliver location-based recommendations and information to users’ News Feeds. According to many in the industry, the move may enable the platform to compete with other local search and discovery services like Foursquare and Yelp.

Now, when iPhone users tap on “Place Tips” in the top of their News Feed, they can see content from a business’ Facebook page along with what their friends have shared about that place, such as popular menu items and upcoming events. Users have the option to opt out of “Place Tips” by turning off location services on the Facebook app.

In the coming weeks, Facebook will enable “Place Tips” for eight businesses in New York City that have installed beacons, including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Dominique Ansel Bakery, Strand Book Store, the burger joint at Le Parker Meridien Hotel, Brooklyn Bowl, Pianos, the Big Gay Ice Cream Shop, and Veselka.

facebook-placetips

The pilot program also includes the use of other location signals at larger places including Central Park, the Brooklyn Bridge, Times Square, the Statue of Liberty, and JFK Airport.

“I think it’s a big plus for traditional brick-and-mortar based businesses. [And] it would be something to watch very closely and start testing if a brand is already relying on things like Yelp to drive business,” says Josiah Humphrey, co-chief executive at app developer Appster. “I don’t want to scream ‘Yelp-killer’ but Facebook definitely has the user base to make a play here, maybe even carve out a potentially new revenue stream.”

It’s also interesting to see Facebook delving into beacon marketing, as one of the obstacles to the mass adoption of beacons is that businesses have to develop their own apps to leverage the technology. But now if brands use Facebook’s “Place Tips,” they can avoid this issue.

“Everyone has Facebook and most are using it primarily on mobile devices, making Facebook’s reach via this technology vastly better than most custom app capabilities,” says Derek Browers, vice president of product and client relations at MomentFeed, a location-based marketing platform. “So now Facebook is piloting the ability for brands to leverage their beacons to target consumers in and around [their] locations, making Facebook location pages much more important and more critical than ever before.”

However, Chris Damron, chief innovation officer at BeaconStream, argues that brands may still want to develop their own apps, rather than using the platform’s “Place Tips.”

“Many retailers may not want to give advertising control to a third-party application such as Facebook, which works through its own big advertising channels,” Damron tells ClickZ.

He continues that as Facebook rolls out “Place Tips,” advertisers will now have to take proximity into consideration.

“The value proposition behind beacons is to deliver relevant content at the most crucial moment. Businesses will have to design their ads to lure in a consumer that could be within walking distance into their establishment, meaning ads must be designed within the context of a new mindset,” he explains. “If consumers are in a mall or shopping district, they are already primed to make a purchase. What offer or piece of information will trigger them to take action now?”

Currently “Place Tips” is free for businesses; Facebook has not disclosed if it will monetize the service in the future.

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