Archive | August, 2016

Facebook Is Updating Its “Offers”, Providing Users With “Tracking” Ability

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Back in 2012, Facebook introduced a new ad option called “Offers”.

Just as the name implies, Offers enables brands to share a discount coupon with their Facebook audience – as explained by Facebook in their initial release:

“Offers are a free new way for businesses to share discounts and promotions directly from a Facebook Page. They can be distributed through the News Feed or promoted as Sponsored Stories. People can redeem Offers via email or on a mobile device.”

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An example of Facebook “Offers”.

In its original incarnation, offers would be posted to a business’ Facebook Page and visitors would click on “Get Offer”, which would result in them being sent an e-mail that they could show to the relevant business, in store, in order to redeem it.

Since then, Offers has undergone a range of changes and today, Facebook has announced their latest updates to the tool, which could make it a more enticing and interesting option for brands.

The New Offers Options

As per Facebook’s announcement:

“Now advertisers can share discounts and promotions where people spend most of their time—on mobile and on Facebook. Advertisers can decide how long their Offers run, who sees them, where they redeem them and more. We’ve also made it easier for people to claim and keep track of their claimed Offers through Facebook, and redeem them across devices or in-store.”

Essentially, Offers has been re-designed for the modern consumer process.

First off, for Offers ads, advertisers will be able to use Facebook’s ad targeting options and creative formats, including carousel ads. Importantly, Facebook has also improved the tracking of Offers to give brands more transparency as to how they’ve been redeemed (and who by).

However, paid ads aren’t the only way to use Offers – brands can also opt to share their Offers direct on their Page through the Offer Page Composer tool.

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“All posted Offers will be viewable by anyone visiting the Page. If someone missed a posted Offer, they can click on the new, dedicated Offers tab to see all Offers posted by the business.”

The new tab will make it easier for people to find relevant offers on a Page without having to scroll down through previous posts.

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Mobile Enhancement

Facebook’s also updated their mobile Offers process, enabling people to more easily claim offers on mobile, while also, again, providing businesses with better tracking options.

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As shown in the second screenshot, once a user clicks an Offer, it’s now e-mailed to them and saved in the new Offers bookmark so it’s easily accessible (any claimed offers, on mobile of desktop, will be saved to this section). And rather than having to show an e-mail to the business in-store, Offers now come with the option to provide a barcode or QR code which can be scanned at the check out, establishing a direct link between your Facebook Offer and off-line redemption.

And Facebook’s also added in a new reminders function:

“Facebook will provide helpful reminders to make sure people never miss out again on Offers they’ve claimed. If people claim an Offer on mobile while they’re on the go, they’ll be reminded about it once they log-in to Facebook on desktop. We’ll also remind them when their saved Offers are about to expire.”

More Tools For You

In addition to these new options, Facebook’s also looking to provide businesses with access to additional barcode options to give brands the option of providing variable discounts to different customer segments – or even individual customers – all trackable based on each code. That may seem like a relatively logical move, but the implications are significant, as it’ll enable brands to measure the online behaviors of each and every person who uses a discount code, providing businesses with, potentially, a whole new range of audience data, and users to re-target with future offers.

It’s an interesting update to an option that’s largely ignored. The new tools make Offers instantly more appealing, and the additional tracking tools provide a new level of transparency and tracking that could be used to great effect.

Pinterest is Adding More Features on Its Video Feature, Giving Advertisers More Options

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Pinterest has put their newest feature into literal motion with the release of Promoted Videos.

With this feature, now businesses and Pinners alike can get ready to set sail on an unprecedented journey of consumer engagement.

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Recently, Pinterest is testing the new mobile video marketing by offering businesses the ability to promote their brand via how-to’s, demos, and sneak peeks. However, the real advantage here is that Pinterest’s new video option enables businesses to combine related, easily accessible pins to support their video content, all in one place.

The team at Pinterest have really made this feature a business treasure chest, offering pearls at every turn. For instance, videos only play as you’re scrolling – when you stop, the video stops. Just like their Cinematic Pin predecessors, viewers can’t camp in their home feed and enjoy your video content. To get the full benefit the viewer has to click, which means at the very least you get a measurable impression.

One of the most unique features of this rollout is Pinterest’s native video player – no site redirection necessary. Once a Pinner clicks on the video, not only will they get to view and hear the video in its entirety, but also be exposed to six additional related pins displayed right underneath. Businesses can handpick those pins instead of relying on an algorithm of suggestions, which gives a company even more ways to leverage the tool.

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When it comes to Promoted Video pins, Pinterest analytics paint a pretty clear picture: They track the number of impressions, number of video views (including the percentage of the video viewed), and the number of clicks your video generated. Like any marketing campaign, you’ll need to track your progress so you’ll know where to tweak along the way, and your Pinterest analytics dashboard couldn’t possibly make that task any easier.

How To Become A Successful Social Media Manager (Infographic)

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Do you want to be a great social media manager? Do you have what it takes to be a great one?

There over 2 billion social media users worldwide and the number will only keep rising. This rise has lead to a demand in social media managers who can help businesses with their social media marketing needs.

A career in social media managing can be highly rewarding.

To get started with social media managing, you need to understand what social media managers do, the skills required to be a social media manager and the steps you need to take in order to find work.

This infographic can help you with all of the above. Check it out below.

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Infographic credit: Social Marketing Writing

Five Creative Campaigns Brands are Using in Instagram Stories

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Instagram has launched their newest feature, Stories, earlier this month as a way to compete with Snapchat.

The premise is basically the same as Snapchat’s Stories. With this feature, users can take (or upload) pictures or videos and add them into their story, where they last for 24 hours. Instagram CEO, Kevin Systrom, has even given Snapchat credit for innovating the way users consume and share content in this format.

Here, we’ll take a look at how five brands are using this new feature. Let’s start with:

1. MVMT Watches New Product Release

MVMT Watches utilized Instagram Stories as a way to introduce their new line of sunglasses. This product reveal is a great way to build excitement around a new product and reward your followers with inside information.

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2. MLB Puts a Fun Twist on Game Updates

The MLB never truly runs out of content with the so many games played every day and night. They currently use Instagram Stories as a fun way to showcase highlights or memorable moments from the previous day of games in the form of a social newspaper. This approach differentiates it from their normal content and keeps it fresh for their followers.

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3. Whole Foods Shares Weekly Deals on Special Items

Whole Foods is using Stories to share lifestyle shots of their favorite items on sale each week. This is a great way for social media to influence in-store purchase intent. It would be interesting to see a “social-only discount” for those that screenshot the story and display it at the registers.

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4. Travel Channel Gives Influencers a Platform to Share

Travel Channel is giving their followers a first-hand look at places around the world by allowing their influencers to post stories on their channel. This exclusive content is a great way to make your audience feel a part of an experience while also allowing your influencers to add their own unique voice.

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5. Food Network Cross-Promotes Other Activations

In a humorous twist, Food Network is using Instagram Stories to alert their followers about upcoming content that can be viewed on their Snapchat Discover channel. Cross-promoting content is a great way to build anticipation and drive viewership on a platform they might not be following yet.

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Conclusion

All in all, Instagram Stories provides another unique platform for serving content to your followers. Instagram’s differentiator is that it has already created more of a community feel for brands, whereas Snapchat is still more of a user-to-user platform.

How To Become A Great Facebook Business Manager (Infographic)

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The days when businesses and companies alike created different profiles to manage their Facebook pages are long gone with the coming of Facebook Business Manager.

The era of taking turns when using one log-in to access a business page has been over when Facebook officially launched the Facebook Business Manager in April 2014. With Facebook Business Manager, you can assign access to partners and colleagues without adding them in your personal profile. By adding their email address, you can invite or remove members and supervise their activities per section.

In today’s infographic, you will get an easy-to-follow tutorial that teaches you the basics and mechanics of Facebook Business Manager – adding a plus point in your venture as a thriving business owner. Learn how to use Facebook Business Manager correctly and start using it now.

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Infographic credit: Slidegenius

Four Great Social Media Tips For SMEs

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All startup owners know that building online business isn’t as easy as it seems.

Having a great service or product and the support of the community is great, but if you’re looking to grow your customer base to mid-size level, you’ll have to do more than market within the community. Many small businesses don’t put much effort into marketing beyond their local region, but those that seek to grow must widen the scope of their self promotion. Growth is impossible without attracting more customers from surrounding areas as well as in your local community.

In order to reach more customers, social media marketing is key. If you build a stronger online presence and show increasing value for your customer base, you’ll draw more potential consumers and improve your bottom line. Here’s four fabulous tips on how to utilise social media to fulfill your marketing needs.

1. Market for Your Niche

Every niche uses marketing a little differently to appeal to its particular audience. There’s no point in wasting money on consumers who aren’t interested in purchasing your product or service.

So spend time identifying your target audience and the kind of content that appears to be going viral in your niche. For example, if you’re using social media to market a real estate investment, you’ll want to focus on the target audience of millennials (ages 18-35) who make up the primary population of renters.

You’d also be smart to place an emphasis on such tools as a regularly updated blog, powerful graphic imagery, and regular engagement that make renters and potential tenants feel like they’re part of a community.

2. Be Consistent and Share a Lot

The consistency and frequency of social media posts and comments can be a major factor in a successful social campaign. Ideally, you’ll post a few times per day or at least several times a week.

Most small businesses don’t recognize the profound impact of sharing content frequently, so they’ll post once a month … or even less. But those who understand what it takes to grow a business recognize that social sites are becoming the go-to stop for consumers that seek information about a business.

Sites that remain up to date with high-quality content and posts tend to enjoy more engagement and customers. When a company neglects its social media pages, it comes across as indifferent to potential buyers.

3. Spread the Good Word

There’s no better method for getting the word out about a new product or service than through social media. It can build relationships with customers and make them feel like they’re an essential part of new production and the future of your company.

In addition, traffic on social media opens the door for word-of-mouth marketing, which has proved to be the best marketing tactic today. Research shows that 74 percent of consumers identify word of mouth as a major influence in their purchasing decisions and 68 percent of consumers will trust opinions about a brand or product from others, even if they don’t know them personally.

4. Invite Two-Way Communication

Social media is like a window into the souls of your customers. Though not everyone posts his or her life story on social pages, a lot of customers have documented their lives online.

This makes it easy for companies to glean information about interests and feedback from their audience base. Customers can also ask questions and leave comments when they wish to communicate with the company.

The flipside is the ability for companies to talk back, and share their own thoughts, questions, and ideas so customers can get to know the firm better. It’s easy to keep up the conversation because response times are instantaneous.

When companies keep lines of communication open on a steady basis, it creates goodwill between the business and its customers, and encourages loyalty and growth with every comment.
Social media works well for every business as long as you’re willing to give it a try. Small businesses that are most engaged and in-tune with their social media pages tend to see the most growth over the long run.

How To Efficiently Manage Your Task List (Infographic)

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Have you ever feel overwhelmed in the flood of  tasks and just can’t seem to keep up? Well, you are not alone.

Ocassionally, you might have felt overwhelmed by their massive list of tasks and feels like they’ll fall behind. The good news is that your large amount of tasks most likely means that your leader entrusts you with skills and know-how to get these assignments completed.

With a little time management and organization, you can start managing your office tasks instead of allowing them to manage you. Take a look at the following infographic to discover amazing tips on taming the task list and become more productive at work!

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Infographic credit: Quill

Google Analytics: The 4 Latest SEO Reports

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In May 2016, Google Analytics launched new reports for analyzing organic search traffic.

Now you can view search engine data and Google Analytics data side-by-side, in the same report, to gain deeper insights into how well organic search traffic (from Google Search) performs on your site.

Google Analytics provides four reports related to search traffic: Landing Pages, Countries, Devices (mobile, desktop, and tablet), and Queries. All four reports include impressions (on search result pages), clicks, click-through rate, and average position.

To view these new reports, link your Search Console (formerly Google Webmaster Tools) property to your Google Analytics property.

Locating Search Console Reports

  • Log in to Google Analytics.
  • In the top menu, select the Reporting tab.
  • In the left side menu, expand Acquisition > Search Console.

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1. Landing Pages

The landing pages report shows the top pages from Google’s organic search listings — with impressions, clicks, click-through rate, and average position — on the left side. On the right side are Google Analytics metrics — sessions, bounce rate, pages per session, goals, and transactions.

This report would identify, for example, landing pages that rank high and attract visitors organically, but have a high bounce rate. In that case, consider optimizing those landing pages for better engagement or conversion.

You could also view landing pages that have a low bounce rate and high conversion rate, but do not rank well. In this case, consider improving your search optimization on these pages.

2. Countries

This report will allow you to compare organic traffic from Google search by country. See which countries generated the most impressions and clicks, and which generated the most transactions and goals.

Use this report to determine, for example, how well international visitors convert through organic search. Drill down on each country in this report for a list leading landing-pages data from visitors in that country.

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3. Devices

This is my favorite report. You can view the number of impressions, clicks, click-through rate, and average position by devices (desktop, mobile, tablet) alongside the number of ecommerce transactions and revenue for that device. If enabled, you can switch the “Ecommerce” menu to “Goals” (in the Conversions on the left side menu) to compare organic search metrics to your internal goals.

For many ecommerce sites, roughly 50 percent of traffic now comes from mobile devices. Is your SEO strategy working on mobile? This report will show you. You can also add another dimension to this report.

Use this report to see if your landing pages perform better on desktop or mobile. If your traffic converts better on desktop, consider a deeper analysis of your mobile traffic to find areas to improve.

You can drill down into each device type (desktop, mobile, tablet) to view landing-page data for that device.

4. Queries

This report provides insights for some of the keywords that drove organic traffic to your site. For each reported keyword, the report shows clicks, impressions, click-through rate, and average position. Use this report to see which keywords drove the most impressions and clicks to your site.

One metric to watch over time is the average position. If your average position improves, your site will likely gain more impressions and clicks. If the average position drops, try to determine why.

You can also use this report in conjunction with AdWords campaigns. If you are targeting keywords in AdWords that already rank high in organic search, consider pausing those campaigns to see if your traffic maintains its level. If so, you may be spending too much on traffic that would occur organically. This could free you to allocate those funds to other keywords.

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Sessions vs Clicks

For each of the reports, the number of clicks and the number of sessions may be different. There are two likely reasons why this could occur. First, you could have custom filters set in Google Analytics that result in lower sessions. Also, you may have enabled bot filtering, which also lowers sessions, but not clicks.

Segments and APIs

You cannot segment the data in these reports. If you do, the segments will only be applied to your Google Analytics data and your search data will show as zeros. The impressions, clicks, click-through rate, and average position are not available in custom reports. In addition, this data is not available from the Google Analytics Reporting API. And the new reports are not available in the Google Analytics mobile app.

Keep SEO Data Longer Than 90 Days

Google retains your organic search data for only 90 days. If you need historical comparisons over a longer period, export that data, to save. To help, set up scheduled emails to export these reports each month. Do this using the “Email” tab at the top of each report page. You can, additionally, configure one email to attach all four reports, by selecting “Add to an existing email” at the lower right of the Email tab page.

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20 Tips To Make Your Website Homepage Content Awesome (Infographic)

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Crafting a good website homepage content is no longer an easy thing to do. In fact, it is one of the most difficult (and important) decisions every digital marketer must take.

Everyone seems to want to know the exact formula for getting it right. But no such formula exists. So the process of getting homepage content published often paralyzes marketers big and small, experienced and novice.

When people ask “What should I put on my homepage?”, most of the answers will be:

  1. Content that best positions your company as the solution to a specific problem
  2. Content prospective buyers are looking for
  3. Both of the above

Clearly, the number 3 is the best answer. If your website’s homepage is doing its job effectively it guides visitors one step deeper into your website. Better yet, it guides the right visitors to the next page, or the content they seek.

See, your homepage, your content, and your marketing in general, shouldn’t aim to engage everyone. Though it may seem counter-intuitive, it should deflect the wrong people. Your conversion depends on engaging the right people, right?

In today’s infographic, we will share 20 ideas to boost your website homepage content. Take a look at it.

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Infographic credit: Feldman Creative and Visme

The Newest Facebook 360° Photo (Infographic)

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Facebook users are still trying to find their way around the latest 360° photo feature.

This was witnessed from the onset when Mark Zuckerberg made the announcement of the release of 360° photos. The comments and questions that asked in Mark’s post was a clear indication that many users did not quite get how it works. This prompted several tutorials to be created in a bid to assist the users to make the most of this interesting feature.

What is a 360° Photo?

360° pictures are essentially a virtual tour around the environment where the original photo is captured. With this feature, you are able to come up with spectacular photos that will allow your connections to view your surroundings in an interactive viewer. With this feature all users are able to access the 360° photos using their smartphones.

The 360° photo tool on Facebook may take some time for users to fully come to terms with it. You would need some level of patience and continuous practice so as to become a pro at it. All in all, this is one of the most exciting additions to the Facebook family.

Uploading 360° Pictures on Facebook

The distinguishing aspect with the Facebook 360° photos is the fact that you can use your phone to capture these photos. Most users still try to understand how Facebook will recognise 360° photos and tell them apart from normal photos. Ideally, Facebook looks at the camera-specific metadata, which can be derived from the photos that are captured.

As far as sharing of such photos goes, you will only need to upload the photo and Facebook will do the rest of it. Your panoramas will be processed and presented in an interactive viewer, which allows users to have a full 360° view of the photo.

Essence of Exif and XMP Tags

As mentioned earlier, Facebook will use the camera-specific metadata to recognise 30 photos. This is made possible by looking at the XMP and/or Exif tags that are embedded on a specific photo. The Google Photo Sphere XMP metadata is one of the most common tags used in 360° photos.

The Exif tags are also used to prompt the 360° processing on Facebook for the photos. This is mainly based on the make and model of the camera that is being used to take the photos. This is a secondary option in the event that a photo does not have XMP metadata.

How to Edit 360° Photos

There are so many options that you may explore if you want to edit a 360° photo. You can opt to use Photoshop, iPhoto or any other photo editor that is supported by Android or iOS. You can edit the content and hue on the photos to have the type of photos you need. However, there is a danger that you might make it hard for Facebook to recognise the pictures are 360° photos. You should try to capture great 360° photos that may not require editing.

While most people are still struggling with 360° photos on Facebook, the infographic below, created by Ereviews, gives you more information on this amazing feature. Explore this infographic data so as to comprehend Facebook 360° photos.

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Infographic credit: Ereviews