Integrating Marketing Channels For Enhanced Multi Channel Marketing

 

 

In the past integrating traditional marketing channels has been a pretty difficult task and companies big and small would manage their marketing channels in isolation, creating silos in their marketing departments.

Thanks to the emergence of new digital channels it has become much easier to integrate marketing channels for multi channel and cross channel marketing.

Here are 3 simple reasons why organisations should integrate their marketing channels to compliment each other, rather than manage each channel in isolation.

 

Consumers will interact with more than one marketing channel before they decide to make a purchase.

These days with so many marketing channels easily available to consumers, a customer would interact with multiple marketing channels before actually making a purchase.

Typically before a customer would actually make a buying decision, they would have seen a print ad in a magazine, searched for a product on Google, clicked on a banner ad on a blog, or had a product recommended to them on facebook.

For brands that use a variety of marketing channels, it is very common to have specialised people or teams managing these different marketing channels. But to convey a clear message to the customer, it is important that all these different departments work together and are on the same page.  It is alright for different marketing channels to have different tones, but it is important for them to have the same voice.

 

Integrating marketing channels to test, measure, and amplify!

Compared to traditional marketing channels, digital marketing channels are a lot easier and quicker to test, measure and amplify.

A good example is using SEM (search engine marketing) like Google Adwords to test different advertising promotions.  By A/B split testing two ads with different promotions, you can determine which promotion is most appealing to customers before using it for other channels.

Another good example of testing advertising copy is through emails marketing. You can send out an EDM (electronic direct mail) to your subscriber list, and split test different advertising copy or design visuals. The variation with the best results (opens, clicks & conversions etc) will determine the winning ad copy.

Once you have tested and measured the results, the next step is to amplify the winning selections onto more traditional marketing channels, like print and television.

 

Leveraging marketing channels off each other = double the effectiveness.

The real value in integrating marketing channels is so they can leverage off each other and become more effective then they would be, just operating in isolation.

A simple example is leveraging social media with email marketing. Getting new fans on a new facebook page or twitter account can prove challenging at the start. But if your business has been operational for a while, and you have an existing subscription list of customers that you regularly email, you can leverage off your subscription list by emailing your list and asking your members to join your facebook.

You can also provide them with a share-to-social option to allow them share it with all their friends. Having your customers as fans on your facebook page, will double marketing effectiveness and increase traffic, because of the viral nature of social media networks.

This works in vice versa as well; you can easily build your email subscriber list from your facebook page, by offering incentives to fans for signing up using facebook applications.

 

Conclusion

Ive only outlined a few examples here, but there are many more ways you can integrate marketing channels together for better results. As long as communication between departments are good, and everyone is measuring the correct metrics and working toward the same goals, marketing channels can be easily integrated with each other to produce more effective results.

2012 Online Marketing Conferences And Expos In Australia

Hi everyone,

Here is a current list of online marketing conferences in Australia for 2012.

Australian Marketing Conferences in 2012 Date Location
Online Marketing Summit 2012 13-15 February 2012 Sydney
Schmart Marketing Conference 21-February-2012 Melbourne
Schmart Marketing Conference 23-February-2012 Sydney
Istrategy 21-22 February 2012 Sydney
Ad Tech 14-15 March 2012 Sydney
Ad Tech 28-29 March 2012 Melbourne
Ecommerce & Payments World 30-April-2012 Melbourne
Content Management World 01-May-2012 Melbourne
Cloud Computing World 02-May-2012 Melbourne
Digital Advertising World 30 April – 1 May 2012 Melbourne
Internet Show Melbourne 30 April – 1 May 2012 Melbourne
Social Media World 30 April – 1 May 2012 Melbourne
CEBIT Expo 22-24 May 2012 Sydney
Cebit Web Forward 22-24 May 2012 Sydney
Online Retailer & Ecommerce Conference 17-18 July 2012 Sydney

 

I will keep updating this list as new conferences get announced. So stay tuned!

Feel free to leave a comment if i have left any relevant conferences out, or if you would like more information about each conference, please let me know.


My first speaking opportunity at the Online Retailer Conference

I know its been just over a month since the online retailer conference, but I would like to share my very first speaking experience at the online retailer conference that was held in Sydney on the 26th September 2011.

We arrived in beautiful Sydney at 8am Monday morning for the social media summit, which was the pre conference event day. I had woken up at 3.30am in the same morning as our flight was in Avalon, Victoria which was 1.5 hours drive from where I lived.

As you can imagine the morning started pretty fuzzy. We got to our hotel and checked in, before quickly getting to the Sydney exhibition centre as we were running abit late.

When we got there we had already missed half of the keynote given by Dave Haber from ice.com . But the rest of the presentation was great, and it was good to get an inside look at how ice.com run their social media department. Then we had Nick Lansley from Tesco, who looked like he had just run a marathon prior to coming up on stage. Nick shared some pretty insightful stuff about mobile, also touching on great innovations in some of the Asian countries.

During the break I had a good chat to Dave Haber, about their social media resourcing, as I was looking to grow the moooo marketing team. He mentioned that having someone assist with social media is great, but it was best to ease them into the role, and give them more responsibility as they progress, but also still manage and monitor the metrics from a higher level. At ice.com, Dave runs all the social media marketing with Lauren who helps with the content. Its pretty amazing for just a 2 person team, to pull off such great social media campaigns.

Next we were broken up into 2 tracts mobile and social media. The first social media marketing track looked great, but ended up quite boring. I then moved over to the mobile track, which was Craig Sulliven, who was an ace and a real gun with testing, and definitely great value with insights. I then went to more of the social media track but again, the presentations were not as good.

At the breaks, we had networking sessions and I did meet some interesting people and it was a great day for networking. That night we went over our presentation and were making many tweaks, so it was still very much a work in progress.

The next day, which was the 1st official day of the main conference, the rest of my team rocked up. The 1st day keynote speakers were great, Yona from beyondtherack.com, gave us insight on how they got started and the hurdles they faced when starting, which was very inspirational. Tyler Hoffman from Google, as expected just pushed googles new products.

Gabby from catchoftheday.com.au was quite amusing, doing his usually controversial trolling, while the others were pretty average. We then broke up into the 5 tracks, I moved quite a bit between tracks from stuff on SEO, to SEM to email marketing to website usability. 1 standout was an american guy from Silverpop who gave us some good insights on email marketing and mobile.

After the conference it was time for the ORIAS, we were nominated for 2 awards, best pure play and best use of technology. We lost both to surf stitch . The ORIAS was good, with Vince Sorrenti doing a stand up skit for us, he was pretty funny. Food was just ok. I ended up with chicken while the 2 people next to me at steak, which was quite annoying. Big winners for the night were: style tread, appliances online, dick smith, and surf stitch. After the long day, and night, we went back to the hotel for another practice presentation session, but decided that we were too tired and would do it in the morning. Next morning it was D day for our presentation. We did a final rehearsal, and saved the keynote presentation on a thumb drive to give to Kylie.

The keynotes for the 2nd day were great, with the ex Wallmart SVP, and a great presentation from Jon Kamaluddin from asos.com. The 2nd day of the conference seemed a little better than the 1st day with quite a few stand out presentations including one on website usability from Josh Himwish from diapers.com, and another good one session on split testing from Craig Sullivan.

And then it was our turn to present. This was my very first time in front of such a big crowd and to say I was nervous was an understatement. I walked in and sat next to Mike my co speaker. I asked him if he was ready, and he said he was kinda nervous. So it was time for our big talk, and we were already 5 mins late because of technical issues. I was quite confidant until everyone started coming in and we had a full house, which what I was not expecting.

When I got on stage to start, I was hit with a wall of nervousness. And my co-speaker accidentally stuffed up our initial introductions so I didn’t get a chance to say it was my 1st time and to excuse my nervousness. So basically I was stuck to having to talk for around 15 mins consistently, while all I wanted to do was run off stage. Again it was my first ever time in front of so many people, but I thought to myself, it is now or never. I so just did it. And with all eyes looking at me, I pushed forward.

It didn’t go the way I had practiced, my tones were all wrong, but I didn’t give up I just kept going, trying my best to engage the crowd. As it came to Mikes turn to speak, I could see he was quite nervous, he started going for it, but I think due to the time limit was rushing.Mike started just reading as much as he could, he even went over his spot and started reading over mine. Finally it was wrap up time and I wrapped up to finish things off. At the end I apologised for the nervousness and told them to contact me if they had questions.

On the way out there were a few people who asked for my card which was nice, and a few others smiled at me before they left which was encouraging, I also got some positive twitter mentions which really made my day. Metal note first thing to do is join toast masters to improve my presentation skills. By next year I should be all ready for more speaking events.

A big thanks to the online retailer team for giving me the opportunity.

20 Tips to increase Twitter Followers

On the web you can find alot of articles that describe various tricks & tips on how to increase the number of your twitter followers. Additionally lots of companies have created software & services that can help you automate the whole procedure. Even if some of those programs and techniques do work in some cases, it is highly recommended not to base a social media campaign on spammy techniques because it can really affect your company image.

In this article I will focus on well-tested white-hat techniques that can be used to increase the number of your followers. I stress that these are not magic tricks that will increase your followers in one single day. These are good techniques that can help you on the long-term increase the number of your twitter followers, maintain them and build a loyal target audience.

1. Be an active user on twitter

If you want to increase your follower count, make sure you post regularly & send most of your tweets during the right hours of the day when most people are online.

2. Place relevant social media buttons in your blog

If are an active blogger you should place relevant social media buttons on a strategic position of your blog.  Do keep in mind that usually the best position for a button is on the top of the article, near the title. Also it is recommended to use the standardised buttons that people know and trust. Finally it is recommended to use buttons that let your readers see how many shares or likes a particular post has. This will encourage them to share it with all their followers.

3. Add a twitter badge on your website

Adding a “follow me” twitter badge on a visible area of your site will help you attract more users. Also it is a great idea to add your social media profiles in your Contact page. This is because some people might find it easier to contact you through these channels rather than sending you an traditional email.

4. Add your twitter account in your email signature

This encourages the people that contact you by email, to find you on twitter. Also adding your other social media profiles like LinkedIn and Facebook is a great way to increase your business connections.

5. Add your twitter username to your business card

This can help you increase the number of followers from your own industry.

6. Using hashtags

Twitter uses #hashtags to group together tweets or add additional information about a message. For every topic, industry or event the community will use alot of different hashtags. Here are some examples: #SEO #socialmedia #SEM #Digitalmarketing #Google #followfriday etc.

twitter3

7. Participate on #FollowFriday

Every Friday twitters will recommend other interesting users to their followers. Make sure you recommend other important followers to the people that connect with you. In alot of cases you will see that they will do the same for you. The 2 most popular #hashtags about Follow Friday are the #ff and #followfriday.

8. Interact with other people in twitter

If you want to be popular on twitter you must interact with other people. Chat. discuss, provide feedback, retweet messages, ask and reply questions. Do not forget that the main aim of social networks is to socialize with others, not only to promote your company.

9. Update your bio, image & Background

Adding accurate bio &  information in your profile can assist other people find you and follow you. Selecting a good profile image &  background can also help you  to show  users that you are a professional. Also don’t forget that first impressions are very important. It like getting a management job in Malaysia .

10. Follow people with similar likes & interests

Twitter is a great place to find new internet friends, exchange ideas & participate on discussions. By socializing with other people you will not only increase your followers count but also be able to influence other people on twitter.

11. Send high quality tweets

Sharing high quality content and messages with your followers is very important in order to become popular. By sharing your views, news, trends, quotes, links & websites that you found useful, you can slowly increase your followers and become a more influential user.

12. Don’t send 140 char twitter messages

People usually give credit to the original author of a tweet, when they Retweet (RT) a message. Many times they choose not to use the ReTweet button because they want to add their comments. But by sending messages shorter than 140 chars you give the chance to other people to give credit to you by placing your username in the tweet or to add their comments. This will help you generate conversation and increase your twitter followers.

13. Add yourself in some Twitter directories

There are a lot of twitter directories out there, where people can find other twitter users with similar interests. But not all of them are worth using, but there are few such as WeFollow that receive lots of traffic and is pretty good.

14. Conduct a contest on twitter

Conducting contests on social networks can help you increase your business brand awareness, your followers & the traffic of your site.

15. Connect your Facebook profile with Twitter

There are many applications that can assist you connect your Facebook or LinkedIn profile with Twitter. In this way you can post the same messages to all the people that connect with you on the many different social networks and increase your total  social connections.

16. Use your twitter profile when commenting on Blogs

When posting a comment on a blog, it is a good practice to add your twitter profile as the link. This can help you start a conversation with the authors and thus increase your followers.

17. Tweet mentions and Thank the people that help you

When people ReTweet, mention you or help you, make sure you thank them. Not only is this the proper thing to do, but also they will appreciate it and they will continue support you.

twitter-bird

18. Don’t Spam you followers

If you start to spam your followers they will unfollow you and you will kill your reputation. Keep in mind that honest & transparent behaviour can help you not only increase your twitter followers and keep the ones that you have.

19. Create a separate list of useful tweets

As we said above it is important to tweet often and send quality messages. Due to the fact that you can’t be on Twitter 24/7 or you might not have always something useful to send, you can create a list of interesting topics, tips, techniques, articles and references and use them when you are stack. This list can contain useful information about your industry how-to articles, tutorials and references to your blog.

20. Use Twitterfeed or a similar services

TwitterFeed & similar services or programs can help you automate your tweets, connect to your blog with Twitter & Facebook and schedule your future tweets. These services can increase your follower count because they can help you tweet more often. Nevertheless remember that these services should not be replacing you on social media & that you must remain an active user.

Google’s +1 button is finally here!

 

After all the talk, Google’s +1 button is now officially here. In a low-key blog post, Google simply announced that the button has launched with a handful of web properties, comprised of the usual suspects. 

google-plus-one

Google is letting people add +1 buttons to their own sites. Webmasters can get all the info on the code by visiting Google’s +1 button code generator page. The code is straightforward for nearly all Webmasters, comprising a JavaScript include for your “head” and a matched set of tags where your want the +1 button to appear in your docuement body.

Ways to Set the Button Up

Currently, there are few options:

When adding the button you have your choice of four sizes ranging from 15 pixels to 60 pixels tall, set the language annotations will appear in, and the option to display (or not) a counter indicating the number of +1s your page has received.

For advanced Webmasters, you may also specify callback functions in the form of a JSON object. You can also pass a URL to the +1 button code. This is especially useful for bloggers who want to put the +1 button in their list of recent posts or category pages. By default, the +1 button uses the URL of the page it is on. By passing a different URL, you can +1 a page using a button on a completely different page. Twitter’s Tweet button allows this functionality, too.

Do You Really Need it?

Aside from yet another social button by which to share, what does this mean for you and your Web site? Although you would not know it from the low-key announcement, this is Google’s most important push towards social search, with so much riding on it that Larry Page has made a bonus plan for Google employees.

Annotations will now be seen by people you (and others) are connected to via Google. However, Google has yet to prove that +1s will have the same far-reaching impact that Facebook likes currently offer.

However, a close reading reveals that Android Market, YouTube, Blogger and Product Search will all see +1 buttons arriving soon. This has the potential to be a game-changer as it will be the first time that user data is really exchanged between these properties. In particular, Android Market definitely stands to successfully differentiate itself against the Apple AppStore – which has no means to bookmark apps or recommend them to friends, even via iTunes Ping.

New Data Nuggets

Web analytics may not necessarily need another metric but +1 button promises to help measure engagement. Official details on what data will stream from Google’s +1 button are not available yet, but Jim Prosser from Google confirmed that “we’re bringing data to Analytics, Webmaster Tools, and AdWords frontend soon”.

Nontheless, there are methods of tracking +1s to your pages. By writing your own Javascript function, you can track +1 clicks as a Google Analytics event using _gaq.push() and use GA’s standard reporting functionality.  All-in-all, the +1 button will now become another micro-conversion that may provide insight to how your site is performing and how users are engaging with your content.


 

 

Twitter now has a “follow” button, to follow the “tweet” button!

 

There seems to be a button war going on all around us. Google, Yahoo, StumbleUpon, LinkedIn, digg — they’ve all been trying to get their buttons in prime real estate on big websites. But 2 players are larger in the space than anyone else: Facebook & Twitter. And Twitter has just escalated the war a bit today.

Twitter has just unveiled their new Follow Button. This follows their previous Tweet Button which is already in use on 1000s of websites around the web. While the Tweet Button was great for sharing single pieces of content, the Follow Button is meant to establish more twitter social connections on the web. So, it’s kinda like the Facebook Like Button, which people place on their sites to get other Facebook users to establish themselves to brands remotely. Of course, the Like Button also kinda acts a bit like the Tweet Button as well (that is, you can also share individual pieces of content from it too).

Are you confused yet?

Twitter’s 2-button concept is actually pretty simple. The Tweet Button is to share things. The Follow Button is to make connections with other Twitter users remotely. So if we were to add a Follow Button to the sidebar on DigitalOnlinestrategy.com, with one click, you could follow our twitter account. This is something Twitter tried to do with the Tweet Button pop-up , but this is a lot easier to understand. Though it also seems like this is actually part of what they were doing with @anywhere — whatever happened to that idea anyway?

And again, it’s all a part of Twitter’s move towards a stronger social graph with much more connections. This will also help with discovery since Twitter is launching the “Follow Button” on over 50 high-profile sites including places like our sister sites , About.me, AOL.com, and Huffington Post. And big sites like  Lady Gaga’s site,IMDb, MTV.com, Jennifer Lopez’s site, and others.

 

Twitter getting more complicated or just getting more social? You be the judge

Twitter has added a couple of features recently, that while adding more social elements may risk ‘jumping the shark’ a little. The new features are the ability to see what tweets your followers are making as well as those made by people they follow. They also added a “stumble through” button allows you to shuffle through your followers tweet streams.

twitter-1

Now how many people are scratching their heads wondering what all that was about and if it is something users really need?

The beauty of Twitter was its simplicity. Being forced to communicate in 140 characters at first seemed ridiculous but quickly took hold because it was simple. The company played with a few features over the few years of its existence but dropped most as they did not foster that simplicity. Now it seems Twitter wants more interaction between its users and are launching these new features to foster this. But should they?

twitter-2

“You can see above that you will be able to click on a person that youíre following and see Tweets from their followers. This means that you are effectively looking at their Twitter stream,” the Next Web noted. The feature had been available a couple of years ago but was pulled, they added.

The ‘stumble” feature has not rolled out globally but the pic below shows there will be a button to click to go through and see others tweet streams. This could come in handy, but is it essential? Social media sites have a tendency to get lucky with their initial service offer and then make changes to what they belive their users want and in many cases they are wrong. Hey, even Google has launched bad products and pulled them quickly.

twitter-3

Why do I want to randomly see a twitter stream of one of the people I follow? Is this a feature to just get more interaction? Twitter does not run ads so the extra pageviews will not add to their income – or are they ready to monetize and want to have some increased pageview generators in place?

One has to wonder if the people at Twitter are making moves that may become too intrusive and change the perception of this simple yet popular communication tool. Twitpics was a hugely successful feature – whether these two new ones become popular has yet to be seen. Personally, I don’t think this feature will become very popular… but I have been wrong before.

It Now Pays To Watch Ads On Facebook


Facebook has introduced a program on Thursday that offers consumers a credit incentive to watch ads on the site.

Facebook will now reward fans who watch certain ads with Facebook Credits, which in turn can be redeemed to purchase other goods on Facebook Deals, the company’s new Groupon-like daily deals venture. The incentive, however, is not very huge. Initially, the average ad will only yield 1 credit, which is equivalent to only 10 cents.

The ads will be mostly in games. Zynga, Digital Chocolate & CrowdStar are among the participating game publishers. Facebook is working with SupersonicAds, SocialVibe, Sharethrough & Epic Media  to serve ads on the program as well as TrialPay, which will provide cool analytics.

The CEO of Sharethrough, says Facebook’s move represents “a step away from disruptive advertising.” Sharethrough’s clients include Nestle and Microsoft, who say their network won’t deliver traditional advertising but rather very branded entertainment, which consumers will want to share & watch with their friends.

Giving incentives to consumers to watch ads is one solution for Facebook’s very low banner click-through rates. This move comes after Facebook expanded its Credits program last week to allow consumers use their Credits to buy real-world things advertised in the Deals. Last time, the credits, which were awarded for fans who signed up for various programs  or bought outright could only buy virtual goods.

Search and Social: Are You Missing Out?

It seems that every so often I’m presented with managing a client’s search engine optimization (SEO) campaign and immediately run into a disconnect: no social media presence! To me, the two logically go together, but to others they may seem mutually exclusive. They’re missing out!

Admittedly, search engines utilize social media factors when determining rankings. How could you not? With sites like Facebook attracting over 500 million users, and Twitter producing 50 million tweets per day, search engines would be remiss if they failed to acknowledge the key signals indicated when users recommend, “Like,” share, tweet, update, or otherwise share information.

If you were a search engine, trying to filter out spam and produce the right results to searchers, wouldn’t you want to make sure you properly “counted” the content/websites that online users really find interesting? That’s where social media comes into play.

Real-time Search

In the recent past, online users have seen search engine’s experimentations with integrating social media factors into their algorithms. The addition of real-time search to Google (and subsequently to Bing) is proof positive that search engines actually care what is said in the social realm.

They’ve made a few adjustments since they started showing the results back in December , but occasionally you’ll see it pop up in the SERPs. Imagine tweeting from your branded account, and having your tweet pop up in a prospective clients search — on the first page of Google.

Rankings

Not only can your social media profile be showcased in real-time search, the profile itself can rank for keywords. For example, for about a week now, a Google search for [holiday gifts] (a term searched an estimated 49,500 times per month) ranked the Twitter account @ number one.

Google SERP Holiday Gifts

Reputation Management

Maybe ranking for specific keywords aren’t your concern with social media, but reputation management is your thing. Social profiles rank high for brand names, especially heavy hitters like Twitter and Facebook.

But don’t forget about niche sites. This list of niche social networking sites is continually updated, reviews are available, and organized by niche. Brands can rank highly using social sites such as LinkedIn, Business Exchange, iCareCafe, and even MySpace.

Be sure to sign up for, and utilize, niche sites. Not only for rankings, but also the simple fact that your prospects might just frequent these sites. If you have a presence and are active, you won’t just be helping your rankings — you’re potentially helping your bottom line and getting direct traffic to your site.

Site Search

It’s time to start thinking of sites like Twitter and Facebook as search engines. Twitter serves up a reported 24 billion searches per month. This, compared to the rough estimates from Bing (4.1 billion) and Yahoo (9.4 billion), is truly monumental. The trend is shifting. Will you be there to take advantage?

Keyword Research

Have you ever used social media for keyword research? You can gain a lot of insight into what your audience is talking about by looking at Twitter searches, and integrating that “jargon” into your SEO campaigns. You’d be surprised what new keywords you can find simply by listening a bit to your audience, and integrating them into your messaging and SEO efforts.

Link Building

In the traditional sense, social sites can be a way for your brand to build links back to your website. Whether it’s a link to your most recent blog post, a link to your services page, or even a keyword in your bio that links back to your website, each can be seen by Google and are given some “credit.” These links are almost always no-follow, but no-follow doesn’t mean they are “unseen” or purposeless.

One way businesses fail to truly optimize their social link building for search engines is in the lack of keyword integration. A few suggestions:

  • Use your keywords in your tweets, and follow it up with a link to your website. Even if you use a short URL, you can optimize your efforts. Many free URL shorteners allow users to customize the URL. Put your keywords in there!
  • Import your blog to your social profile (Facebook allows this, as do many others). If your blog has an internal link to your site (of course hyperlinked to your keywords), it will be transferred to your social profile when posted.
  • Add keywords to the meta title of your social profile. In Twitter the meta title of your profile is the name field and handle. Add some of your keywords in this area (as applicable).
  • Anytime you upload an image to your Flickr page, Facebook, etc., why not add a keyword? Just one more area you can optimize your efforts for search engines.

As you can see, there are many ways in which social merges with search (or search merges with social), and many areas where businesses very well may miss out. So the big question you must answer is: How do you make sure your brand doesn’t miss out on optimizing your social media efforts for search engines?

 

Kaila Strong