App Me :)

In order to communicate with customers cross-channel and on the devices they use everyday, businesses must include mobile as part of their marketing strategy.

Mobile marketing is defined by Kaplan as ‘any marketing activity conducted through a ubiquitous network to which consumers are constantly connected using a personal mobile device’.

With social media being prominent in consumer’s daily lives as well as useful in e-commerce, it is important to understand mobile social media, which is defined as ‘a group of mobile marketing applications that allow the creation and exchange of user-generated content.’

Kaplan proposed the 4 i’s as advice for mobile social media.

  1. Integrate your activities into users’ lives, to avoid being a nuisance
  2. Individualize your activities to take account of user preferences and interests
  3. Involve the user through engaging conversations
  4. Initiate the creation of user generated content

First off let’s look at some recent trends of mobile usage…

comScore-November-2014-US-Smartphone-Subscriber-Market-Share

A report on the decline of TV’s popularity, explains how consumers now split their attention across multiple screens when looking for entertainment or information. The trends highlighted show that globally, TV has lost 13% of its audience, and the greatest rate of abandonment comes from the 14-17 year old age group. This is not surprising as kids these days all seem to have multiple devices and from a shockingly young age.The report also shows that other devices (mobile phone, tablet and laptop/computer) have all increased in accessing digital video content, whilst TV has decreased across various types of digital content.

The image to the left displays the most popular Smartphone Apps as of the end of 2014, with Facebook coming in as number 1 (shocking… not).

Grandma: “You young people always have your noses buried in your phones…”

This is true, and most of the time it seems we’re not even doing anything useful on our phone. Sometimes we might reply to a text, read the news, stalk someone’s Instagram or make a frustrated post about the metro trains service.

But, what are we really doing on our phones all the time? 

The image above from June 2014 highlights how we spend our time on our mobiles. Social networking, games and radio make up almost half of our time spent on our devices. Using our phone for actual ‘phone’ purposes, as well as researching or navigating comes under the 34% highlighted.

The 2011 diagram depicts how consumers actually ‘snack’ on mobile content. According to their findings, we do most of our snacking in the morning, catching up on information we’ve missed while we’re asleep and likely also distracting ourselves from work.

Not only do we actively use our phones now for all information and entertainment, we tend to scroll on our screens purely because we’re bored and waiting for something to take our interest. Companies can capitalise on this by effectively reaching out to consumers and giving them something to do.

People these days can still be hesitant to make an online purchase, especially off their mobile device. However, retail takes up 5% of time spent on our phones, which is likely thanks to social media links.

By following Kaplan’s 4 i’s to effectively communicate with customers, e-commerce businesses can improve their mobile based purchases and make consumers feel at ease when browsing and buying. One of the problems with online purchasing and especially from a mobile device, is visualization. It can be hard to know your size, detect the quality of a product or compare multiple products. So marketers must make consumers feel at ease by providing clear and appropriate images, easy links and simple purchase and delivery options, with guarantees of quality and ease of returns.

The Iconic, Australias leading online retailer, specifically targets mobile customers with their mobile app. This is made clear with their slogan “Shopping has never been easier”. The mobile design is simple and appealing, with useful links, it allows shoppers to browse and buy anytime, anywhere and not have to make a commitment to sitting down to online shop and go through the process of browsing through the complicated online store via mobile browser. The Iconic also has strong social media links, with Facebook advertisements and communications through companies such as UNiDAYS. This company well reflects the 4 i’s: integrate, individualize, involve and initiate, through its mobile marketing strategies that allow for broad reach, easy accessibility and user generated content.

Is mobile marketing the way of the future for e-commerce?

How do you prefer to shop? In-store, online (browser) or mobile app?

Please share your thoughts on these mobile trends that have been discussed.

When do you think you spend most of you time snacking? On what? And for what reason?

Maintaining Your Website

dog-grooming-image-680w

High Maintenance….

A website is like owning a pet, it must be taken care of; fed, groomed, exercised and given health check ups.

In other words, a website must have content and it must be updated continuously, it should be designed in an appealing way and given touch ups, should be frequently utilised by yourself and others in order to be effective and it must be analysed for faults and undergo software updates.

This process of keeping your website ‘healthy’ is called maintenance. Maintenance is important so that your site can run smoothly, avoids security risks, and customers are satisfied by providing them with new and exciting information, products or features.

There are different areas involved in maintenance which can include updates, regular maintenance tasks, and measurements/analysis.

TYPES OF MAINTENANCE

Updates

Suede's So Hot Right Now... Shop the Latest Trend Edits

Suede’s So Hot Right Now…”  Shop the Latest Trend Edits

Updates concerning website content may include the text, images, links, downloads, or any of the ‘stuff’ that is going to attract new visitors and encourage repeat visits. For ecommerce sites obviously product updates are essential, leading businesses such as Missguided, ASOS and Urban Outfitters continuously add new products, style guides and trends, discontinue unpopular items, and change prices or host sales and special promotions, as well as new feature additions to the website. These all have to be communicated on the website so that the customer is aware and encouraged to look and buy, which can be further encouraged through related press coverage (review of site or product) to add credibility to your brand and special competitions to help create buzz for your website.

What's new?

What’s new? Communicating the latest products to hit the store. “This just in….”

Tasks

Boo chores 😦

Obviously one of the reasons website maintenance may not be conducted is because it can be boring and time consuming, but it is essential. Certain elements of maintenance should be performed regularly and run on a scheduled basis, such as one a month. These tasks should include backing up your website so you don’t lost any content, monitor website outages/disruptions so that you are aware of these before customers (this can include installing a specific program), checking registration information (relevant contact information/registered email is up to date etc.), testing website performance including speed which is something that will frustrate a lot of visitors, as well as link checks as a broken link is useless, and software updates like third party software where for instance WordPress regularly update their software so I will install these updates as soon as they are released.

Measurements

Measurement is obviously key in any marketing activity, as once a strategy is implemented we need to ask: is it working? For ecommerce sites clearly analyzing sales stats is important, but website statistics should also be analysed. These can include traffic statistics including; demographics of visitors, keywords used to find your site, referring sites, time spent on sites, pages entered and exited on, pages most viewed, busiest days etc. Many web servers will already provide this information, or Google Analytics can also provide some of these. Another thing to measure is the awareness of your site, are you showing up in search engine results? Have you made the first page with the keywords and phrases you want? Not only awareness but measuring your reputation and performance is key. Knowing who is talking about you (through blog reposts, comments on review sites etc) is essential for the maintenance of your brand and website, so an alerts program that searches for prompts can be installed to help monitor your online presence. Further, there are different types of measures for the effectiveness of your website:

Measures of Internet marketing effectiveness

Brands have to know how successful their digital marketing actions are so measuring effectiveness is essential in order to maintain and modify. Chaffey et al. (2006) in ‘Internet Marketing’ categorised these measures as assessing:

Level 1: Business effectiveness – which analyse the impact of the web site on the whole business, and look at financial measures such as revenue and profit and promotion of corporate awareness.

Level 2: Marketing effectiveness – which measure the number of leads and sales achieved via the Internet and effect of the Internet on retention rates and other aspects of the marketing mix such as branding.

Level 3: Internet marketing effectiveness – which assess how well the site is being promoted, and do so by reviewing the popularity of the site and how good it is at delivering customer needs.

Update your social media photo!

Update your social media photo! “Please Like my DP :)”

SO let’s get to it!

MAINTENANCE

Maintaining a small website is easy. To have a successful website that people are interested in, it should be unique, relevant and interesting. This can only occur if the content and design are updated regularly, so they do not become boring or outdated, therefore a clearly defined process for making changes to the content should be in place.

Get your work status up to date!

Get your work status up to date! WHO ARE YOU?

Adding new blog posts at regular intervals, updating photos and information, and modernising themes/designs are a few options that can easily be done for small sites. Maintenance is not just for information companies, online retailers or bloggers, it is also relevant to social media platforms. You are a brand and you want your friends/visitors to stay informed about your life and to promote yourself in a favourable way.

MAINTENANCE RESPONSIBILITIES

However, the bigger a company/website is, the more complex maintenance becomes. Sterne (2001) suggests that the essence of successful maintenance is to have clearly identified responsibilities for different aspects of updating the web site. To understand the different responsibilities it can be split up like this: Who owns the process? Who owns the content? Who owns the format? Who owns the technology?

  • Who Owns the Process

The process is essentially the guidelines for updating the site, specifying the responsbilities for different aspects of site management and the way/order in which tasks are carried out. For larger companies the people involved may include any relevant people from the marketing department and site developers. With all the interested parties having an input in deciding on the process for updating the web site. The process may involve a simple tweaking of an issue, communicating new product additions, or it could be a complete site re-design that involves changing the look and feel of the site. This requires a lot more effort and more people will be invested in this change.

  • Who Owns the Content 

Screenshot (11)

This refers to those responsible for updating the content of webpages within part of an organisation. The peoplewith this responsibility will be those who have the best skill and knowledge to develop that content. Below is a diagram explaining a possible process of content review beginning with the brand manager writing a copy, before being tested, and finally implemented officially.

  • Who Owns the Format
Maintaining your website

Maintaining your website… “

The format is basically the components of the design and layout of the site, being the ‘look and feel’ #atmos of the page. The important factor for this is consistency, meaning all pages and links should be coherent so that it all represents the ‘brand image’, is comfortable and familiar for users and so that it easy for users when design elements are similar. Not only is this role to do with creating a coherent and easy to use website, but it must be aesthetically appealing and meet consumer needs. Many sites will have software that provides templates that already specify a menu structure and graphical design.

A site design template is the standard page layout format which is applied to each page of a web site, which is important for coherency and user satisfaction. The content developers then only have to add the relevant text and graphics to specific documents and do not have to worry about overall site design. Again, this is much easier for small scale wesbites. Such as my blog site that you are on! The image to the right shows the simple process of customising the design template, and I do not have to work with other people or departments to discuss the consistency in design or content.

  • Who Owns the Technology

Technology is hugely important in digital marketing today so there is a need to understand the role and its specific reponsibilities so that a company can fully capitalise the power of the Internet. This component is most important when a company is involved in ecommerce and customer service. This is because the site is no longer just an isolated system, but one that must be integrated with other technologies such as the customer database, stock control and sales order processing systems. For this purpose the IT department must be heavily involved, with other technical issues needing their expertise including: availability and performance of web site server, checking HTML for validity and correcting broken links and managing different versions of web pages in the test and live environments and content management.

Chaffey, D., Chadwick, F.E., Johnston, K., & Mayer, R. (2006). Internet marketing: strategy, implementation and practice (3rd ed.). Financial Times/Prentice Hall.

YOUR MAINTENANCE

Remember, it is not just big brands that need to maintain their digital marketing presence, it is anyone online. Whilst social media users avidly maintain their pages and posts, they are probably not aware that this is routine maintenance, they are simply ‘keeping up to date’. However, maybe you’re forgetting some crucial details, is your registration information up to date? is your website secure? Maybe there is some old information you should get rid of…

For all you fellow bloggers out there here are some key areas to remember based on a simple WordPress maintenance routine:

  1. Backing up your website
  2. Installing updates
  3. Processing comments
  4. Setting up security
  5. Keeping track of website health
  6. Optimizing your database

Hope you found this informative and helpful!

 

Do you have a maintenance routine for your own websites?

Are news information sites the most under pressure to maintain their website efficiently?

 

Digital Marketing

So what on earth is Digital Marketing??

Well… 

Digital Marketing can be defined as the promotion of products or brands via one or more forms of electronic media.

Firstly I would like to clarify that Digital Marketing is not just a means of advertising online! Yes the internet and social media do play a big part in many brands digital marketing strategies, but don’t forget the old school technologies such as the electronic billboard, radio and television. Digital marketing is so important today due to the rapidly growing market and changes in information communications technology. It allows brands and customers to communicate faster, easier, cheaper and in more diverse ways than ever before.

Many argue that consumers have become desensitized to traditional forms of advertising, and have the ability to block out advertising efforts from their presence (for example: fast forwarding over commercials).

This means that marketers have to come up with more creative ways of communicating with consumers in a way that does not seem forced upon them and can create value.

This is why social media has become so important, with almost everyone being involved in one or more platforms, brands must keep up and try to understand, create, communicate and provide value for their target audiences.

“Kids These Days”

I’m sure you’ve heard the scoffing of your grandparents when someone’s (probably yours) eyes are fixated on their mobile phone or tablet or laptop.

Everyone is so reliant on digital technologies these days, for all things including entertainment, research and communication.

“Mum I need my ipad for school work OK?” “I’m talking to my friends online!” “Just checking the feed.”

Not only is it how consumers stay social, they keep up to date on news/gossip (what have the Kardashian’s been doing today!?), entertain themselves (just one more episode on Netflix tonight…), do research (for education and/or buyer bargaining power), job hunt, shop, bank, find love and save the world.

“Back in my day…” *groans* “We used to read books and play outside in the streets!”

Gone are the days of having to go to a library for research, trusting a salesman’s word, waiting for the newspaper to inform you, posting a letter or even having to change out of your pyjamas to shop.

Digital technologies allow for so much versatility and creativity and are prominent everyday in both subtle and obvious ways.

Organisations must understand effective methods of digital marketing in order to connect with and satisfy consumers.

My future posts will aim to explore various aspects of Digital Marketing.

Discussion

Can you think of an organisation that uses multiple digital mediums to connect to you? How? Do you find it effective?

Traditional advertising is still effective, but is being over taken by new technologies…

Young people spend so much time online, is it social or antisocial?

Is Facebook the best social media platform for digital marketing?

The Blog

Welcome to my blog!

#nocablesattached

This website will involve posts on various Digital Marketing theories and phenomenons. I would love any and all contributions whether you agree, disagree or have some further discussion points, so stay tuned.

First Blog Coming Soon.

A bit about me…

My Thoughts:

|| HOT ||

  • Nutella Donuts ..mmmm donuts!
  • Same-sex marriage
  • Ronda Rousey
  • Boho waves
  • Ripped jeans
  • Football

|| NOT ||

  • Man buns
  • Hipster beards
  • Vegans talking about being vegan
  • Cross-fit
  • Monster sharks
  • Kylie Jenner

What do you think?

Leave a comment at the bottom of the page.