Monday, June 24, 2013

Tips to Diversify your Content

 Written by: Kristin Chou

Content Marketing: Broad practice that involves the creation and sharing of content to attract and engage current and potential customers.

Having a variety of content formats is necessary, if you want to grab a wide audience that is interested in your products or services. Diversifying your content will help to bring in new business,  by providing quality content across various platforms to better target your audience.

Most people enjoy consuming content in a variety of different ways, so changing up your content style would help you to bring in and retain audience. For example you could include:

1. Website Content (Articles, blog posts, tools & resources)
2. Image Galleries (Flickr and other image hosting sites are a great way to convey your message)               
  • Create images that give people an inside peak to your company to inspire them, so that they share them socially and are accessible via search engines.
3. Audio Podcasts (Some people prefer to listen to content rather than read)
4. Online Video (60% of online video viewers are over the age of 35, and it is expected to grow, so this would be effective to gain a wider audience) 
  • Video formats include: Live action, screen casts and animated videos 
  • Create videos people love without a high production cost.
5. Micro-Blogging (Twitter can be used as a resource for your audience, which would increase your number of followers)
6. Case Studies (Showcase your products and services in a substantive method)

Whichever format you end up using, make sure you weigh in your resources and spend time to improve the quality of your content production. It is more effective to have one post done very well, as a opposed to several in multiple formats, which would show little result. A healthy marketing campaign is diverse, but it will still need a strong direction.

Start basic. Begin with a blog. Perhaps include some videos or product images on Pintrest/Tumblr. As long as you keep things natural, then your audience will not become overwhelmed.

Above all, focus on your expertise and use a variety of mediums to convey your message.

*Offer expires 6/30/13

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Marketing Tip of the Week: Get Involved with Mobile

This week, our team is very busy, but we must keep blogging! So, I'm introducing a new mini-blogging series called, "Marketing Tip of the Week." This week, we're all about mobile. Mobile marketing is increasingly important for small and medium sized businesses. Your customers are on the go, so you need to be too. Here are three big reasons why you need to get involved with mobile:

1. Our stats show that when Insights clients add mobile marketing to the mix, they can see up to a 145% increase in clicks from to their site and blog. Mobile advertisements are huge traffic drivers.

2. According to a Nielsen study, 91% of adults have their mobile phones within arms reach twenty-four hours per day, 7 days per week. People are increasingly reliant on their mobile devices to provide them with content that provides information they need to know and services to make their lives easier. You need to be where your customers are looking for and consuming information.

3. Also according to Nielsen, by 2014, mobile internet usage will overtake Internet usage. There is a huge demand for mobile advertisements to reach the increasingly larger mobile audience. Beat your competitors to the space, and learn what your target audience wants and needs to reach and retain a new, untapped audience.

So what are you waiting for? Get involved with mobile today! Call us to see how Insights can help.

*Offer expires 6/30/13

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

The Importance of an Integrated Marketing Campaign

An integrated marketing campaign is crucial to any business's success in 2013. Increasingly, customers are turning to their trusted friends for opinions, or looking up businesses online instead of relying on traditional advertising for suggestions. You need an integrated marketing campaign to control your brand and reputation, and to retain and grow your customer base both online and offline. Creating and executing on this type of campaign will give you a huge advantage over competitors. An integrated approach will allow you to build a loyal audience, position yourself and your staff as experts in your industry, develop interactive and meaningful relationships, avoid public relations, or social media disasters, and give you an overall stronger marketing plan.

As part of your integrated marketing campaign, you should consider including the following strategies to ensure that your brand will be a trusted source for the services, or products that your business offers:

Have a social media plan. Determine where your audience is. Are they on Twitter? Are they on Facebook? What about LinkedIn? YouTube? Pinterest? Where are your competitors? Would they read a blog, if you offered one? Are you going to post sharable, relatable and actionable content? A social media plan is necessary to succeeding in the digital age. Social media cannot be ignored as it helps businesses spread their messages to target audiences, offer customer service and interact with your existing customer base.
Content marketing plan. What content would your audience be most interested in? Do you have any content you can repurpose for a blog, or a white paper? Do you have a case study? How will you maintain content creation? How will you spread your word? Developing a content marketing plan will allow you to position yourself as a trusted, thought leader in your space. It will also help you to engage with your audience, retain your customers, humanize your brand and enhance your SEO.
A third party/evangelist plan. Of your customer base, who will speak on your behalf? Do you have loyal clients who would be willing to write positive reviews on your business online and/or to potential clients? How will you reward your loyal customer base? Consider developing a plan on how to reach and engage with your evangelists as customers look to friends and trusted sources for recommendations on businesses or brands.

Determine your search marketing plan. Develop a targeted keyword strategy, by using a keyword tool. We use Google's Keyword Tool to determine which keywords we should rank for, by determining what our audience is searching for and therefore what they're interested in learning about. Based on these findings we develop a sound content marketing strategy as well as a plan for how to rank organically on search. If a paid search campaign is right for your business, you should explore developing that type of plan as well.
Email marketing strategy. As part of your integrated campaign, consider creating an email marketing strategy. Here at Insights, we have two newsletters we send out each month: one geared toward our existing customers that offers insight (couldn't resist) into how to get the most out of the exposure on, blogging and marketing efforts; the other one is geared toward lead generation where we show our monthly special offers and our marketing pieces. Developing an email strategy is important to spreading a business's message to potential customers and can be helpful in retaining clients.
Mobile marketing plan. More and more people are consuming information on the go on their mobile devices. Consider including mobile advertising in your integrated approach, if that's something you think your audience would want. Also, consider optimizing your site and blog for easy readability on a mobile device. You want to reach your audience where and when they're consuming information and/or looking for a business's offerings.
Events/networking strategy. Offline, face-to-face marketing is important too. Being present at networking and relevant events will help to humanize your brand and help you to establish a strong relationship with your audience members.

Of course every integrated marketing campaign is different for each business. Most companies will incorporate some, or all of the above, but many companies will use different methods to accomplish marketing goals. But the bottom line is that businesses need integrated approaches to marketing.

Tell us about your integrated campaigns in the comments below!

*Offer expires 6/30/13

Monday, June 3, 2013

Marketing Tips for Startups

Written by: Kristin Chou

Here are a few marketing tips and tricks for startups!

Search Engine Marketing: The Internet will become a startups best friend. They can market their products and services at a low cost. The quickest way to see results is through Search Engine Marketing (SEM), which is where you target your consumer market on a popular search engine. The emphasis should be on displaying quality advertisements and keywords to more effectively find consumers. Long tailed keywords are an alternative, which are at a lesser cost and are more targeted. AVOID entering a price bidding war in SEM when competitors have higher marketing budgets. The focus should be on content, which will eventually give your website a higher score and higher advertisement ranking for SEM.
      Spread Knowledge Online: Engage your audience, let them in on some how-to tutorials, recent industry trends, and other expertise about your products and/or services. The more you share the better! People will perceive your content as professional and the media will take notice, who could potentially interview your company for your opinion and expertise! Strong media exposure will build brand credibility and reputation quickly.

Image courtesy of:
      Social Media Exposure: The network of social media should never been disregarded. The power of influence is incredibly strong especially on social media platforms. No matter how large your marketing budget is, you may not end up seeing better results. The best way to navigate these waters is to go at a slow and steady pace, in order to allow for strong followers, who will become people who help spread your brand’s image online. In order to gain followers, the key is to be more likeable. Share your expertise and express your brand in a positive light, so that people will potentially give you their trust. 

      Customers First: Make sure to take a portion of your profit and invest it in customer experience!

      Storytelling: This is essential in creating that foundation of culture for your company. It can began in the form of a blog or out at a bar, instead of banner ads or pay-per-click placements.

           Leveraging the Market: Keep an eye on the market. Work in collaboration with our brands, so you can be on the lookout for opportunities that may help your brand. Share your expertise at major events organized by other established brands no matter what industry. Put your brand at an equal playing field as other brands, which will also boost your credibility swiftly.

     Direction:  Always start with the end goal in mind!