Archive | March, 2016

Customer Loyalty Is Still Important For Digital Age

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Recent study has been conducted across shopping affinity analysis. It found that retail brand loyalty is apparently alive and well in the hearts of Australia’s consumers this holiday season.

The study has revealed that although Black Friday holiday shoppers visited multiple stores, these shoppers visited the same retail locations they normally do. While the study focused on offline shopping behaviors of consumers, the message is clear enough: loyalty is not dead and well and merchants (be they online or off) should focus on developing experiences that built confidence, trust and loyalty – perhaps some referral marketing tactics.

As the competition for holiday shoppers heats up, one thing is very clear, holiday shoppers are religiously visiting their favorite stores. This seems to indicate that the retail experience matters and that brand loyalty trumps ‘door buster’ deals from competitors trying to gain market share. As consumers, our mobile devices are always on, always connected, and always with us. These mobile digital breadcrumbs are powerful signals of interest and intent that if analysed can reveal powerful insights for retailers in understanding the heart of their holiday consumer and their shopping journey.

40 Fabulous Companies You Need To Follow On Twitter

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image source: https://startbloggingonline.com/

Great brands always inspire their consumers and prospective customers.

The latest and easiest media to accomplish this task is through social media. Today, let’s take a look at some of the most inspiring brands you definitely need to follow on Twitter.

1. @DIGIORNOPIZZA

You didn’t know pizza could be funny? Well thanks to DiGiorno’s Twitter presence, we now know that it definitely can be. Pizza lovers especially will love the brand’s enthusiasm for its product.

2. @MarsCuriosity

Mars Curiosity is NASA’s latest mission to explore the surface of Mars. The mission’s Twitter account delivers some pretty amazing photos of the planet, presented with just a little bit of sass.

3. @tacobell

The Taco Bell Twitter account has been going nuts ever since the release of the taco emoji, but it’s an endlessly entertaining account even without the emoji-mania. Taco lovers rejoice, this one’s for you.

4. @OldSpice

Surprisingly, this account is more full of jokes than brand propaganda. Sure, you’ll get an Old Spice commercial thrown in there every once in awhile, but in general, Old Spice will just fill your Twitter feed with dad-esque jokes.

5. @hotpockets

Did you think you left hot pockets behind with middle school? Think again! The brand is still very much around, and they boast a hefty following of 17.6K users.

6. @DosEquis

If a brand already has killer marketing in place, it tends to carry over well to its corporate Twitter account. And let me tell you, Dos Equis has killer marketing. Who doesn’t love the most interesting man in the world? If you’re a fan of the ad campaigns, you’ll get a lot more where that came from with the Dos Equis Twitter account.

7. @Delta

It’s hard to be an airline on Twitter. Most spend their time fielding customer complaints, and no customers are unhappy like airline customers. Delta, however, handles complaints with grace and gives its followers some entertaining tweets along the way.

8. @Oreo

The Oreo Twitter account achieved fame after the blackout incident of Super Bowl XLVII, and it hasn’t disappointed since. Great pictures, videos, and jokes await you with this corporate Twitter account.

9. @Arbys

Arby’s does a pretty hilarious job of creating art with its menu items. Who doesn’t love that?

10. @CocaCola

For a soft drink, Coca Cola does a pretty great job of keeping up with pop culture. Follow the account for funny pop culture related gifs, photos, and videos.

11. @toptalllc

If you’re into programming and technology, Toptal is the account you need to follow. Every day, you’ll get a different blog post about a different new technology, programming language application, or set of tips and tricks. It’s a very handy way for software developers and designers to stay on top of their game. Not to mention, the accompanying illustrations are pretty incredible.

12. @salesforce

Salesforce is a great account to follow if you want to learn more about promoting your business. Content includes information about what customers want, current digital marketing trends, and the kind of online ads that work best.

13. @CNN

The CNN Twitter account will keep you updated on all the latest news, so you can keep yourself generally informed on happenings all over the world. Most tweets also include pictures and video.

14. @Pillsbury

A great account to follow for recipes, but you might not want to check it if you haven’t eaten in a few hours, since most recipes are accompanied by mouthwatering images.

15. @treehouse

Treehouse is another great option for programming enthusiasts that is geared more towards beginners than Toptal’s account. The company’s Twitter feed includes helpful tutorials, so you can get started in any programming language. Recent videos include instruction in AngularJS and Swift.

16. @Etsy

Etsy’s Twitter account is a great source to visit if you’re in need of unique gift ideas. The company’s feed features a wide variety of different items featured on its website that you might not be able to find otherwise.

17. @intel

Followers of Intel will learn about all kinds of ways different people are using the company’s technology. Recent examples include a 15 year old who built a microwave and an Australian surfer who makes 360-degree HD videos.

18. @TEDTalks

This one is a no-brainer – who doesn’t love a good tech talk? You can learn about things like why wine tastes better when you think it’s more expensive and how you might be 3D printing your clothes at home pretty soon.

19. @WholeFoods

Need to brush up on menu items to prepare for the holidays? Or the best gifts to bring your host? Whole Foods has all the answers.

20. @SpaceX

SpaceX is always up to something pretty cool and interesting, such as the first SpaceX mission to fly Astronauts to the ISS. The account also posts pretty awesome pictures of launches, tests, and new technologies.

21. @Petco

What’s not to love about a twitter account that posts pictures of animals all the time?

22. @Photoshop

Photoshop’s tweets not only come with beautiful images enhanced by the tool, but their tweets often feature new tips and tricks that you can use with your own photoshop work. Talk about inspiration.

23. @NatGeoPhotos

This one is pretty self-explanatory. Everyone loves the beautiful photos featured in National Geographic, so why wouldn’t you want to see them featured in your Twitter feed every day?

24. @nytimestravel

If you’ve got a strong case of wanderlust, this is the twitter account for you. New York Times Travel posts breathtaking pictures from all over the planet, so you can feel like you’re traveling the world without leaving your Twitter feed.

25. @Habitat_org

Habitat builds houses for those in need all over the world. By following their account, you can learn about the most recent projects and how you can help by giving back.

26. @WWF

The World Wildlife Fund is on a pretty important mission to save all the animals, and its Twitter account is a great way to see what the organization is up to.

27. @UNICEF

If you want to know how to help children all over the world, UNICEF is a great organization to follow on Twitter. The account can help you learn about some great ways you can make a difference in the world.

28. @the1010project

If fighting poverty is your goal, be sure to follow the 1010 Project. The organization aims to empower local leaders and break the cycle of poverty for good.

29. @anitaborg_org

Maybe you’re passionate about women in technology? If so, the Anita Borg Institute is another great account to follow.

30. @LEVIS

Levis will give you all the information on sales you need, so you’ll never have to buy jeans at full price again. The company’s feed is full of other handy tips and tricks as well, such as how to use a bandana as creative giftwrap.

32. @Starbucks

Starbucks frequently tweets deals that are going on in stores, as well as delicious drink recipes. It’s a win-win.

33. @WarbyParker

Need a new eye wear? Follow Warby Parker for the latest deals and trends in fashionable eye glasses.

34. @hm

We already love H&M for being relatively inexpensive, but following the company’s Twitter account can help make the brand even more affordable. You can also get tips on styling your favorite purchases.

35. @NASA

Who doesn’t want to learn about space?? Followers will get information on some of NASA’s current missions, awesome photos from space, and some throwbacks that detail the space program’s past projects.

36. @google

Google is always up to something exciting. Follow the company’s Twitter account to stay up-to-date with all the latest happenings.

37. @Nike

Need some fit-spiration? No better place to turn than Nike!

38. @patagonia

Patagonia will make you feel like anything is possible, plus they use their social media platform to try to achieve some good. What’s not to love?

39. @DisneyPixar

Disney-Pixar always makes us feel a little better about life, and their Twitter account surely doesn’t disappoint in that realm.

40. @MalalaFund

Where better to find inspiration than from a fund started by an 18 year old who’s already changing the world?

Is Your Website Accessibility Compliant?

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The extended December 31 2014 deadline for Australian website accessibility compliance is fast approaching (WCAG 2.0 Level AA standard). This is a mandatory requirement on all websites owned and/or operated by the Australian government departments and agencies under any domain. This includes external (public-facing or private) and internal (closed community) sites. Therefore, conformance is required for all internet, intranet and extranet sites. Have you taken the necessary steps?

Read More…

Transport on NSW Ban Voiceless’ Kangaroo Bus Ads

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Recently, Transport for NSW has banned the ad about cruelty to kangaroos. It said the ad was too political and potentially distressing for children.

Voiceless, the animal protection institute, had planned to put the ads on Sydney buses as well as billboards at Sydney railway stations, aimed at getting Australians to become more aware of the kangaroos. The ads were banned despite having approval from the Outdoor Media Association, the peak national industry body that represents most of Australia’s outdoor media display companies. However, the campaign will instead be launched across billboard campaigns, showing an image of a kangaroo and her joey with the words “Their fate is in your hands”.

Transport for NSW told Voiceless that the authority had not seen the ads in question but had concerns about the content on the Voiceless website. On the other hand, Voiceless head of communications Elise Burgess told AdNews the organisation was surprised by the ban.

“Given the soft nature of the imagery used in our ads, Voiceless was shocked that it resulted in a last minute veto from Transport for NSW. Especially when considering that similar, if not more graphic, ads have been displayed on NSW buses with no complaint in the recent past,” she says. “The point of our campaign is to raise awareness about an industry and its illegal practices that many Australians do not know about. Every year millions of kangaroos and joeys are slaughtered for the commercial trade with little question about the methods, which are brutal, such as the bludgeoning or decapitation of joeys.”

A Transport for NSW spokesperson stated that as contract buses are publicly funded, there are standards in place that restrict the display of “political or similar matter, or advertising that may offend”. Recently, the Alcohol Advertising Review Board (AARB) banned an outdoor ad placed at a bus stop for Lion Cider. The organisation is currently pushing for further legislative restrictions on all outdoor advertising.

Five B2B Aspects You Need To Pay More Attention in 2016 (Infographic)

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B2B marketers are faced with many options when it comes to digital channels.

There are websites, search, social media, big data, content creation, app development, software suites and many more that are just some of the essential areas that marketers have been allocating their budgets towards to build successful campaigns.

If you are a part of a B2B company that plans to devote more dollars to digital in 2016, then you’re in a good treat. Some 98% of B2B companies plan to increase their investment in digital for the coming year. Where this additional budget is coming from is fairly clear: B2B marketers say they’re spending less money on traditional channels such as brochures and billboards. However, where the spend is going isn’t as easy to pin down. As the digital marketing landscape expands, how do marketers know which new channels will enhance their current B2B strategies?

In the following infographic, you will discover the key approaches that have led B2B marketers to success and what tactics can have a major impact on future growth potential. The five specific areas covered include content quality, customer journey, predictive analytics, marketing automation, as well as webinars and SEM. These five areas aren’t comprehensive by any means, but we believe that investing in each can significantly impact revenue in the year ahead—and long beyond.

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Infographic credit: MDG Advertising

What’s The Most Popular Social Media Channel in Australia

Did you know that 65% of Australians use social media at least once a day?

The same survey revealed that 25% of respondents said that they use social media to find out more about a brand, while 20% used it to look for reviews before makin a purchase. The Australian government itself is currently looking at establishing an online security commission to ensure the rapid removal of bullying content from social networks.

Here are some statistics of the most popular social media channels in Australia.

1. Facebook

Facebook is the most popular social network and the third most visited site in Australia. It’s estimated that around 40% of the population (nine million people) check Facebook daily, with more than 7.3 million checking on mobile. Mobile internet users rose by 33% between June 2015 and February 2016, as the number of Australian smartphone users rose by 29%.

2. Twitter

Twitter is the 15th most visited website in Australia. The Internet microblogging company   has opened its Sydney HQ in September 2013. The social media market is still relatively young in Australia, and Twitter identified it as one of its key growth markets when it filed for its IPO, when it had around 3 million Australian-based Twitter accounts.

Local telco/ISP Telstra has reported that around 15% of Australians have a Twitter account, and that 75% of those with an account, used Twitter for mobile.

3. YouTube

YouTube is the fourth most visited website in Australia. The content gathers nine out of ten viewers of come from outside the country. In fact, Australians are so creative on YouTube, that the site is contributing funding to Screen Australia to help more Australians become online video creators.

4. LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the ninth most visited website in Australia. It opened its first local office in 2010, when it had around one million members (it had risen to 4 million by May 2015). In 2016, three of the top 100 most connected people on LinkedIn were Australians, opposed to 11 from the UK and 55 from the USA.

5. Google+

Australia has over 235,000 Google+ users.

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Influencers: Brands, Celebrities and Sport Stars

The most popular Facebook page in Australia belongs to radio hosts Hamish and Andy, with more than 1.6 million Australian fans, while global pages for the TV show Family Guy and rapper Eminem are also popular.

Australian entertainers are the most followed people on Twitter, with teen singer Cody Simpson at number one (with more than 6.2 million followers). Actor Hugh Jackman, and singer Peter Andre are also popular, with over three million followers each.

The most popular Youtube channels are by individual content creators. The most popular is an advice channel called the Community Channel, which has more than 1.4 million subscribers, other popular pages are run by YouTube musicians and a choreographer.

Nielsen Launched DRM, Combining Mobile and Desktop Audiences

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Digital industry body IAB and Nielsen have launched Australia’s latest digital audience measurement currency, combining their audience bases across desktop and mobile devices for the first time.

The all-new Digital Ratings Monthly (DRM) substitutes the Nielsen Online Ratings which measures the most popular news sites in Australia. It also provides an insight into the audience size of services like Twitter and Snapchat.

Furthermore, DRM aims to give the market a first look at Australia’s total digital audience, de-duplicated, across PC, smartphone and tablet for both web browsers and apps. What DRM is doing is capturing and reporting the real year-on-year growth of unique audiences across key digital devices. It allows the market to understand how much duplication there is across devices. It enables us to do by having this enhancement is ensure we maintain market confidence in our trading currency.

DRM fuses together Nielsen’s pre-existing PC panel for home and work, consisting of 7,000 people, with nationally representative panels of Australian smartphone and tablet internet users, consisting of 2,000 smartphone users and 750 tablet users, as well as Census-tagged data for PC and mobile web. It also uses a single-source panel and an establishment survey in an effort to provide de-duplicated audience figures.

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The above data shows the total active digital universe in Australia is close to 19.6m people across smartphones, computers and tablets – with 17.951m on computers, 13.170m on smartphones and 7.58m on tablets during February. According to the data for last month, Google, Facebook and Youtube are unsurprisingly the top three sites by unique audience. For February, Google had a unique audience of 19.627 millions with an active reach of 92.43%, while Facebook had a unique audience of 15.477 millions with an active reach of 78.86%.

Snapchat Reveals Big Updates in Its Messaging System

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Snapchat certainly knows its basic audience.

Text messaging is the dominant form of communication among teens, with 55% of 13 to 17 year olds noting that they text their friends every day. This finding has been reinforced by several other studies, and is reflected in the burgeoning user bases of apps like Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Kik. Snapchat too has seen massive growth, though it hasn’t necessarily been seen as a messaging app, per se.

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That may be about to change. Today, Snapchat has announced a major update to their on-platform messaging and connectivity features, one which has the potential to change the game for messaging across the board.

Using slick new features and upgraded functionality integration, Snapchat has unleashed a powerful messaging toolset that works perfectly in line with the wider Snap experience. And as with many of the platform’s additions, you’ll be keen to show your friends just how cool these new features are.

Here’s how they work. First off, you can now make calls via Snapchat, even if the call recipient isn’t already chatting with you. Once swiped, you’ll have the option to join the video call, watch or ignore. The cool thing here is that if you choose to watch, you can respond to the video chat via text instead of having to be on camera yourself – good for those times when you’re still all morning hair and tired eyes. From here you can take the conversation in a range of directions – you can minimize the video to make it into a more chat-like experience. You can send a sticker – Snapchat has made more than 200 stickers available, giving users new ways to express themselves (this may go some way towards explaining the platform’s recent acquisition of Bitmoji, though Bitmoji are not part of this initial launch). You can send your own GIF-esque response via a new option called Video Notes, a thumbnail video, 10-seconds max, that you can record and send as part of the exchange (with audio, if the recipient taps on the image). You can also send an audio note – a short, voice snippet that’s integrated into the chat flow and multiple photos in a chat, each of which can be edited with Snapchat’s drawing tools, and you can send camera roll photos during both audio and video calls.

In addition, Snapchat stories will now auto-advance, meaning that once you’ve viewed one story (or had enough and you want to skip), the next Story in your list will start playing automatically, making it easy to take in more content on the platform.

There’s a lot happening here, a lot to take in – if you want to see the full detail of the update from Snapchat direct, you can scan this QR code into Snapchat and be taken to the Snapchat Update story.

Now You Can Add Image Descriptions on Photos You’ve Tweeted

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Do you know that the fourth most requested feature on Twitter is the ability to add alternative text for images?

enabling better functionality for people who are visually impaired. Twitter’s now actioned that request – from today, people using both the iOS and Android versions of the Twitter app will be able to add descriptions of up to 420 characters to images within Tweets.

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The addition of text descriptions will improve the user experience for those who are currently not able to view full tweets. Automated screen readers and Braille devices are able to translate text, but images, of course, prove problematic, denying visually impaired users full access to the platform’s content. With text captions, such devices can now work in greater collaboration with tweets, providing a more comprehensive on-platform experience. Already, The New York Times, The Associated Press, The BBC, and Sky News have started using the new option to better connect with their audiences.

Twitter’s using web-standard alt-text coding to add in the new feature, while they’re also updating their REST API and Twitter Cards services, enabling access to the same, which effectively opens up the new option to publishers and developers. This is particularly interesting as it may lead to a new data source with uses beyond assisting the visually impaired alone. Alt-text data is one of the many elements used by Google, for example, to better match relevant content to user requests. As such, description text could provide new insights and data for tweets – and at 420 characters, it takes the potential for tweet embedded info well beyond the standard 140-characters available.

In essence, Twitter is providing developers a new data tool to play with, and if enough publishers get on board and start including text descriptions within their tweet images, it could become an interesting and beneficial source. Imagine being able to search tweets by image content, being able to get data on what images and image types are more popular and where, on what different types of words are being used to describe similar objects in different regions. Businesses could also set up alerts to let them know when people use images of their brand representatives, products or logos, in which image descriptions could be of value.

However, this update is currently only available via iOS and Android, you can’t add descriptions via desktop at this stage. Once added, the image description won’t be visible, but will be accessible via assistive technology or back-end code.

60 Seconds Instagram Video Will Be Available For Everyone

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Here are two good reasons why you need to keep your faith on Instagram: they haven’t changed their algorithm (yet) and the video duration will be extended to 60 seconds.

Last month, Instagram announced a new 60-second video ad option, extending the options beyond their 15-second and 30-second variants. T-Mobile was one of the first companies to take up the option, launching an extended version of their Super Bowl commercial featuring musician Drake.

Today, Instagram has said that this new, extended video option will be made available to all users, increasing both the capacity and potential for video content on the platform.

Looking to expand video capabilities on the platform makes sense, as the time people spend watching video via the app has increased 40% in the last six months. Those numbers are no real surprise. The wider trend towards video content is prevalent across all social platforms and all of them are looking for ways to better facilitate video to work with evolving growing demand. Following the update of longer video, Instagram is also adding in the capacity (in iOS at least) to make videos out of existing clips in your camera roll. Users will be able to trim video clips, re-arrange them, add filters and captions. Basically, you’ll be given enhanced capacity to build video clips right from your phone, which should lead to some more interesting and engaging video experiments on the platform.

The new additions present some interesting options for the platform, particularly as it moves through its user experience transition in coming months.