The Ultimate Revelation Of In-store Check-ins and Engagements

What’s driving check-ins?

Today’s digital marketing paradigm revolves around SoLoMo, which is broken into “social”, “local” and “mobile”. This paradigm represents three crucial aspects of marketing success: reach, relevance and resource. Here’s how each term can be connected:

  • Social includes social networks that provide brands the “reach” to customers.
  • Local includes the nearby consumers who can be targeted with relevant offers.
  • Mobile includes several hand-held devices that become the channel resource to deliver offers to the target audience.

If you are a social-media-savvy marketers, perhaps you might have seen the check-ins users give on their profiles when they visit a new place. Much of this has been made possible by the various mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets and other handheld devices, which consumers use boundlessly today.

The GPS and beacon technologies backing various mobile devices have given a great impetus to social media check-ins. After all, turning on “location” of a mobile device can make it easier for users to share their location with their family and friends, who in turn, get to know more about the place.

This is how the SoLoMo paradigm is surfacing out these days. As consumers give more and more check-ins at your retail store, restaurant or event, the more popular you become on social media.

The key to popularity on social media is engagement, which consumer check-ins can surprisingly provide. As such, it’s not uncommon for brands these days to leverage the power of consumer check-ins to attain their digital and social media marketing objectives.

Check-ins and social media engagement: What’s the connection?

 According to eMarketer’s study of mobile usage in the United States, an average American adult spends 3 hours and 15 minutes daily on mobile devices. This behavior of mobile users has pushed marketers to create a well-defined mobile strategy, backed by data. But where exactly on the Internet are they spending so much time? It’s social media, which is only seeing it’s users rising each year.

According to Statista, there were 2.46 billion social media users in 2017, which is expected to become 2.77 billion by 2019. The number is actually huge in terms of penetration, covering 71 percent of Internet users. Given this number, brands cannot help but include social media in their digital marketing strategies to stay ahead of their competitors.

Check-ins are a good example of how location-based marketing campaigns are executed to generate positive word-of-mouth and increase brand loyalty. It provides stores the immediate information they need for knowing who their visitors are, what they are doing and what is it that they desire. You can engage these visitors with relevant offers and check-in rewards, and turn them into loyal customers.

Check-ins are a good way for brands to generate awareness among target audiences. As social media users tend to give a check-in wherever they go, restaurants, clubs, concerts, cafes, and retail stores are finding them a good way to increase engagement on social media. They also come with a touch of convenience as they integrate location-based services to make a brand’s reach more effective and relevant.

Five Useful Out Of Home Marketing Tips You Should Know

No, out-of-home marketing is not dead. In fact, brands continue to supplement their television, radio and print advertising campaigns with out-of-home banners, billboards, point of purchase displays, street furniture ads and transit advertising. But the recent digital transformation has certainly changed the face of out-of-home marketing campaigns, making them highly efficient, transparent, measurable, and impactful.

Although traditional marketing principles continue to hold strong even today, brands have to up their game in order to get the best out of their out-of-home marketing campaigns. Designing a colorful and informative billboard and putting it up in a high-traffic area is good in its own place. But succeeding in the game of out-of-home marketing is a challenge for brands, especially with so many players competing for consumers’ attention.

Don’t worry if you are struggling to make your OOH campaigns more effective. Here are a few tips that can help you get the best out of your efforts:

Craft crisp and effective messages

The copy of your out-of-home advertisement is perhaps the most important element to focus on. Given the short attention span of people, long ad copies can simply kill their interest. Your copy should be crisp enough for people to be able to read it at one go. You should try communicating your message using minimum number of words. Creating a concise copy with six or less words can actually create the right impact on people.

Keep the design as simple as possible

 While it’s a common practice to clutter billboards and banners with too much information, simplicity in design actually creates the real magic. Out-of-home marketing, whether traditional or digital, should be direct to the point, and focus on a single convincing idea. A perfect out-of-home ad contains a properly-chosen image or graphic, a brief copy highlighting the brand’s USP and the company’s name, logo and contact details.

Make a strategic choice of locations

The choice of location is extremely crucial for succeeding in out-of-home marketing. Brands nowadays pump in whopping sums of money into advertising media in order to increase reach of their advertising campaign. You, as a brand owner, need to ensure that your advertisement is put up in a space where it’s likely to grab the maximum eyeballs. Doing so will help you maximize your returns from the investment you make in OOH marketing.

Leverage social media

The effectiveness of a single banner ad can be increased ten times when it is run on social media. Digital advertising panels are highly beneficial for brands because they establish real-time connections between marketers and social media feeds. Leveraging social media channels like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter will not only increase visibility of a brand by increasing reach but also provide necessary data to measure campaign performance.

Always know your competitors

Last but certainly not the least, you have to keep pace with your competitors. While it’s always recommended that you stay original, you cannot completely ignore your competitors’ strategies. You cannot put up an ad that contradicts your brand’s core values and ridicules your competitor. Rather you should draw inspiration from your competitors and do something which is closely in line with their strategies.

5 Skills You Need to Have For Succeeding in Out of Home Marketing

Even though digital technologies are changing the marketing game, out of home marketing is no way close to being dead. It’s still a preferred form of advertising for brands that wish to reach a mass market at a reasonable cost. Out of home advertising formats, be it billboards, banners, or posters, are still used as an adjunct to traditional forms of advertising such a television, radio and print.

But as an out of home marketer, you need to know that you can’t succeed unless you understand the trade properly. Just like any other form of marketing, out of home advertising also demands a clear understanding of the market and specific skill set on the part of marketers. If you wish to succeed in the out of home marketing game, here are a few skills that you should start developing:

Communication skills

Effective communication forms the essence of marketing. As such, you have to master the art of both written and verbal communication in order to create effective out of home advertisements. OOH ad formats rely immensely on the message, which can only be crafted by somebody who has a flair for writing. At the same time, you will have to communicate your ideas verbally to your team members, which requires good speaking skills.

Visualization skills

Visualization is something not everyone does well. But it’s certainly one of the most in-demand skills needed for out of home marketing campaigns. Unless you are able to imagine the various details of the final advertisement will look like, you won’t be able to design it well. Visualization is a form of imaginative thinking that gives a vivid picture of the final product. You should also be able to think out of the box while brainstorming ideas for campaigns.

Designing skills

As a continuation of the previous point, you should also know the basics of designing in order to give your visual ideas a concrete form. Out of home advertisements also rely heavily on imagery and colors, which only an expert designer can play with. You should know which color signifies what and how consumers are likely to react to it. You should certainly know about the various designing software like Photoshop and Illustrator that help in creating well-designed, visually-appealing OOH ad formats.

Analytical skills

Data has always been an important part of marketing because it provides useful insights about consumers and the market. In order to make the best use of marketing data, you should have sharp analytical skills. You should be able to play with numbers and draw meaningful conclusions from data patterns. This is the only way you will be able to reach the right market and provide consumers the right offer.

Negotiation skills

Last but certainly not the least, you need to be able to negotiate with different parties in order to get the best out of your OOH campaign. You might have to constantly negotiate with space vendors, designers, and copywriters about campaign timelines and costs. If you are able to drive a hard bargain with these parties, you are sure to succeed in out of home marketing.

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4 Common Prejudices that People have About Location Based Marketing

Marketing nowadays has become so precise that it’s possible to direct consumers to a store based on their physical location. All thanks to geo-targeting technologies and the increasing mobile coverage, that a new form of marketing- location-based marketing- has come to the forefront. Although the concept of location-based marketing is not new, these emerging technologies have certainly given it a new face, allowing marketers to deliver ads to people’s mobile phones, provide detailed product knowledge, offer incentives, and increase the brand awareness.

But location-based marketing is more than just delivering targeted ads based on people’s physical location. There are a number of tactics that marketers have to conjure up in order succeed in the game. Sadly, most marketers fail to get a clear understanding of the concept and take actions based on prejudices, which often cause their campaigns to sink. Here are a few wrong notions that marketers tend to have about location-based marketing:

Location-based marketing opportunities are always available

Some people think that smartphones are always keeping track of people’s location. But in reality, nothing of that sort happens. Smartphones can only track users’ location if they give their consent. Irrespective of the operating system, users will always get a notification to allow or deny location access to a device or app. Location-based ads can’t be delivered to a user if he or she has switched their location services off on their phones.

Location-based data is always accurate

While the importance of data in location-based marketing cannot be underestimated, the accuracy of such data is always under scrutiny. Accuracy and precision are key factors to consider while building audience profiles. Although data precision is less important, data accuracy is something no location-based marketer can ignore. In order to get a clear understanding of consumers and put each dollar to effective use, marketers have to focus on acquiring insightful and accurate data to make campaigns more effective.

Proximity indicates purchase intent

No, not always. Just because a user is somewhere close to the store doesn’t mean they are looking for it. Location-based marketing will only be effective when marketers are able to identify whimsical consumers along with those who are researching on the product or service. Ad copies for such campaigns can be “buy it now” for whimsical shoppers or “learn more, buy later” for buyers researching on the business.

Location-based marketing requires new ways of marketing

 Location-based services may have changed the way marketers deliver ads to people, but the technology doesn’t require them to concoct a new way of marketing. Location-based marketing tactics are just a supplement to your multi-channel strategy and follow the same conversion funnel as other marketing forms. The benefit of location-based marketing is that marketers can serve relevant ads to consumers based on their physical location and push them to take an action. You might have to do physical A/B testing to know how effective your campaign is.

Location-based marketing can help marketers reap high revenues and get more footfalls to their stores. But it’s important for marketers to plan their tactics carefully so that they get the best out of each ad dollar spent.

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5 Things About Out of Home Marketing That You Should Learn from Your Competitors

Out-of-home marketing is certainly one of the oldest forms of marketing that is still very prevalent in today’s marketing world. But have you wondered why some brands succeed while others fail miserably in the out-of-home marketing domain? Well, the reason is simple: successful brands know exactly what they are doing with the medium. Instead of creating a colorful banner board and putting it up in a high-traffic area, these brands go deeper into their targeting and designing process to come up with outdoor ads that are both relevant and impactful.

One big mistake that brands tend to make is that they underestimate their competitors. While you may be struggling to grab more eyeballs in the outdoor space, your competitors may steal your viewers with a remarkable strategy. This is where you need to consider your competition and learn a few things from them, which are as follows:

Impeccable targeting

The most obvious reason behind your competitors’ success is their impeccable targeting strategy. Outdoor advertising has always proved effective in grabbing consumers’ eyeballs. Your competitors know exactly who to target with the ad and how. You should do a research on how your competitors are targeting people without being very upfront about it. This will help you plan your outdoor ad campaign more effectively.

Response-driven advertising copy

The ad copy on outdoor ads is one of the most important factors to consider. Some brands succeed in creating an impact by using short, response-driven advertising copy on their outdoor ads. Not only does it prove easier for viewers to read but also drives them to take an action. The ad copy should communicate your message effectively, which makes it necessary for you to know what kind of copies your competitors are using.

Using roundabout advertising

The length of the campaign also holds importance in out-of-home marketing. While large ad formats like billboards are popular, they also prove highly expensive at times, especially when the campaigns have short lifecycles. But perhaps your competitors are making the best use of outdoor media by using roundabout advertising, the campaigns which are designed for one to three years. You should certainly use roundabout advertising if you are aiming at a higher return on investment.

Focusing on design

One good lesson to learn from your competitors’ out-of-home marketing campaigns is about their design. By incorporating a simple but appealing banner design, competitor brands manage to grab more eyeballs. Instead of making the brand look tastelessly showy and unimpressive, you should rather use your brand colors smartly and try to paint a memorable picture of your brand before consumers. The design is something you shouldn’t ignore while running out-of-home advertising campaigns.

Making ads more interactive

Last but not the least, you should focus on creating interactive billboards because your competitors are also doing it. Not that you should copy them, but you should certainly draw inspirations from them. You can leverage digital media to create interactive and engaging ad campaigns that your consumers would love. You can also use analytics-backed creative ad formats that also help you measure the performance of your campaign.

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4 Things You Should Know Before Getting Into The Out Of Home Marketing Industry In 2018

If you are someone who wants to start a business in the out of home marketing domain, you should read on. 2017 will be a year to remember for the industry because it unraveled exciting developments. But what about 2018? Should you start or not?

Well, the out of home marketing industry is likely to go a step further in creativity, innovation and accessibility in the coming year. Ad spend continued to increase in 2017, and it is expected to increase by an average of 4% in 2018. As such, you also need to up your game if you are wishing to enter the industry.

Here are a few things you should know in order to prepare yourself better:

 Small businesses will have more OOH advertising space

So there’s a good news for you. The Internet is a storehouse of new solutions that provide marketers new ways of planning, booking, and tracking out of home advertising space. The new-age “click-to-purchase” out of home advertising space gives marketers the much-needed accessibility to the market. Marketers can target their desired locations and purchase the space for as long as they need. In 2018, this is expected to make out of marketing a much more budget-friendlier, thus paving small businesses to use the medium.

The creative message will be backed by digital capabilities

This year has been exciting for the industry because it explored new ways of backing OOH campaigns with data. Digital interconnectivity proved a boon to OOH marketers because it allowed them to perfect their targeting with the help of precise demographic data. 2018 is expected to leverage digital capabilities and data feeds to communicate the creative message. Out of marketing now making a significant transition from two-dimensional poster ads to multi-channel, multi-faceted brand experience. All thanks to present day’s digital opportunities.

There will be greater measurability

Ever since mobile and out of home marketing integrated, marketers found new opportunities to leverage data. OOH advertisements triggered more online activity per ad spend as compared to offline media. Not only this, outdoor advertisements integrated with mobile technologies and social media have driven brand awareness and sales to a great extent. Leveraging mobile location data will allow marketers to measure the viewability of the OOH campaign. If you are able to leverage the power of data and integrate OOH and mobile, you will be able to connect with your audience better.

Immersive brand experiences will have more value

Tech giants like Google, Apple, and Facebook to name a few are investing whopping sums into immersive experiences. Display technology changed ever since virtual reality and augmented reality came into the picture. These technologies are likely to gain more prominence and value in 2018, owing to their fast adoption rate. The digital out of home domain will thus have plenty of opportunities to use VR to shape consumer experiences. By creating immersive experiences, you will be able to attract and retain a huge pool of consumers.

Make sure you do your research on different aspects of OOH marketing thoroughly before venturing out into the industry.

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5 Out Of Home Marketing Tips You Need To Learn Now

Before you plunge into the widely-believed-to-be-profitable domain of out-of-home marketing, you should know that consumers don’t look at banners and billboards the same way they used to before. Our advertising fathers reaped whopping sales by placing a billboard of their offering in a busy traffic area. But now, things have changed. Instead of looking up, our consumers prefer to look down into their smartphones, tablets and other hand-held devices.

So let’s be honest: out-of-home marketing can be a challenging affair. Although it provides a number of benefits like better reach, cost-effectiveness, and higher sales, it’s not easy to nail this game. But don’t worry, you can follow the tips below to succeed in out-of-home marketing:

Keep Your Copy As Short As Possible

First and foremost, your copy has to be understandable. The rule of thumb is six words or less. But you can still extend this limit, depending on readability and message length. It’s a hard job to keep the copy concise. But that’s the only way you can get your message across. Drivers or pedestrians don’t have the time to read something more than this. So you should keep your advertising copy as short and precise as possible.

Always Keep It Simple

Yes you should be able to grab more eyeballs, but not in a way that makes people wonder what exactly are they looking at. The use of complex visuals or extremely bright colors can simply ruin your out-of-home advertising campaign. You should keep the visual aspect of your billboard as simple as possible so that viewers don’t see it as a distraction. Avoid using obnoxious colors that can ruin your brand’s image terribly.

Give Just One Point Of Contact

An ad without any contact information would be useless because customers won’t be able to reach the company. At the same time, providing them with too many points of contacts can confuse them completely. You should give your phone number and your website as a point of contact. This will make it a lot easier for your consumers to contact you. But make sure you make the font of the details prominent for drivers and pedestrians so that they can read it without much effort.

Let Your Creativity Flow

The more creative you get with your ad, the more eyeballs its likely to grab. People always look for something different. Then why not use this opportunity to show them something new? You can create 3D billboards or the ones with animations and moving parts in them. Such ads are more interactive and engaging. Although you might have to spend a little more on such ads, the number of impressions you get will surely compensate for it.

Be Very Smart With Whatever You Use

Yes, because a small mistake can ruin everything that you have worked for. You need to keep your brand’s image in mind while using out-of-home marketing. Whether it’s the image or colors or copy, you need to create everything smartly and align them with your brand’s values and image. This is one thing no marketer should ignore while using outdoor advertising.

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5 Useful Tips From Experts In Location-Based Marketing

Location-Based Marketing Secrets To Know

 Many businesses are still wondering what is the secret mantra for success in location-based marketing. Well, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to acing the game. But certain principles of marketing will continue to remain fundamental in location-based marketing. Marketers have to continue offering something of value to the right target audience in order to survive in a competitive business world.

Location-based marketing can be challenging on many levels. The geo-location technology backing smartphones and hand-held devices has given a great impetus to location-based marketing. But marketers’ job doesn’t end by sending targeted ads to people based on their precise location. Experts in the field feel that there’s more to it. Here are a few tips from experts that today’s marketers should follow:

Convenience For Customers Is The Key

Founder of “Help a Reporter Out” Peter Shankman says that unless customers get convenience, no business is likely to succeed in location-based marketing. Marketers should focus on providing people with something they need, rather than barraging them with up-sell offers. Attracting the customer is the hardest part to do. The next step for the marketer is to amaze them with something unexpected. Convenience of the customer is, therefore, the first thing marketers should keep in mind.

Responsive Website Design Is An Un-ignorable Factor

Jayson DeMers, CEO of Audience Bloom, says that creating a responsive website is the first step towards success in location-based marketing. As mobile phones and handlheld devices are becoming pervasive and users are likely to use them for surfing the web, it’s important for marketers to create a website that can be accessed through these devices. This is the only way a business can generate leads and sales.

Customer Reviews Are A Great Way To Increase Desirability

Karen Leland from Sterling Marketing Group says that reviews from customers who are regular and express appreciation for the offering would be a great way to make a business desirable. There’s actually nothing to feel awkward while asking them to write a review. Marketers can use different online platforms to engage customers. Such a thing would increase comments and create brand awareness.

Good Incentives Are Irreplaceable

Jim Joseph from Cohn and Wolfe says that good incentives are an irreplaceable component of location-based marketing. Customers often get used to getting rewards for engaging and participating in location-based marketing programs. As such, a business is likely to have a large pool of loyal customers. Providing them with good incentives is likely to bring them back for a repeat purchase. As such, no business should ignore incentives in location-based marketing campaigns.

Local Search Listing Is Very Important

Brian Honigman, social media consultant at Honigman Media, stresses upon local search listing for location-based marketing success. He suggests that a business’s locations are listed on all major location-based service such as Facebook, Google+ Local, Yelp, and MapQuest. It’s also important to include address, image, menus, special offers and other information in the listing so that people are able to know what they need to know about the business.

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Five Outrageous Ideas For Your Direct Response Marketing

Marketers Need Direct Response Marketing

Direct response marketing can be a tough nut to crack. It involves a lot of risksfor marketers because what works for one type of a consumer may not work for another. This is the reason why direct response marketers are always testing their campaigns, offers, content and media.

No matter what, direct response marketing is one of the most effective ways to generate leads and increase business revenue. It helps marketers to measure consumers’ responses, determine the performance of their campaign, and take necessary corrective actions. As such, it won’t be wrong to say that marketers need to incorporate direct response marketing, both online and on-ground, in their marketing strategies.

But if you are wondering how to ace the direct response marketing game, here are five outrageous ideas you can try:

Highlight The Benefits Of Your Offering

Experts in the field of direct response marketing suggest that you should focus on highlighting the benefits rather than the features of your offering. Benefits seem to out-pull features in a number of direct response marketing campaigns. The ad should show what kind of problems your offering intends to solve and how it has done them. This is a proven technique propagated by a number of marketing gurus in the present times.

Make A “Yes Or No” Offer

It is also seen from a number of campaigns that a “yes or no” offer out-pulls more prospects than an offer without any option. A “yes or no” offer elicits either positive or negative response from prospects, and creates an urgency for them to respond right away. You can use this kind of an offer by putting a “yes” or “no” stamp or check boxes below your offer. It is also seen that a negative-option offer does better than a positive-option offer.

Justify Reasons In Your Copy

One of the most powerful ways of influencing human behavior is by telling people the reason behind your actions. The word “because” is seen to activate an automatic compliance response, which inspires them to take a particular action, such as subscribing to your email list or clicking on your website. The copy of your ad should, therefore, tell people why you are doing something.

Communicate What You Want Your Prospects To Do

It’s also important to tell your prospects what you want them to do. Your ad should guide them to the next step and also tell them what to expect by doing so. For example, you can say, “Follow these easy steps to unlock a range of benefits” or “Click here to know more, etc. This provides a helping hand to your prospects and gives them the confidence to move forward.

Always Put A Time Limit

Last but certainly not the least, you need to put a time limit on your offer in order to get better responses. An offer without a time limit does not create the urgency for your prospects to take actions. Since of the main objective of direct response marketing is to get immediate feedback, a time-bound offer will likely to pull in more prospects who would be interested in your offer.

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Is Experiential Marketing Any Good? Five Ways You Can Be Certain

The Buzz-Maker Called Experiential Marketing

Experiential marketing is not new in the world of marketing. It has always been around in the form of brand activations, events, conferences, product demonstrations, promotional giveaways, and most recently virtual reality experiences. Experiential marketing involves creating connections between brands and consumers through real-life interactions and experiences. No matter what type of experiential marketing is employed, marketers are sure to create a buzz around their brand.

While there’s so much talking about experiential marketing, you may wonder whether or not it will be good for your business. Don’t worry, because you are not the only marketer who’s thinking this way. The following are a few check-points you should consider to know if experiential marketing is working for you or not:

Leads and sales generation

Experiential marketing is good for generating sales and leads. Most companies feel that event marketing has helped them improve their sales figures. Consumers also expressed that they are more likely to purchase from a company after they have attended an experiential marketing event. If you have received more sign-ups or purchase orders after an event, perhaps experiential marketing is working for you. It’s a great way to increase the number of prospects in your database.

Number of direct interactions

One of the best parts of experiential marketing campaigns is that it allows consumers to interact directly with the brand, either through social media or events. It provides an edge over telephonic interactions because both marketers and consumers are able to see each others’ reactions. If you are seeing that a lot of people are coming up and asking you about your brand, the event is successful. It is a good way to create a positive impression before consumers and make them come back to you.

Brand loyalty

Experiential marketing helps marketers convey their mission, values and goals. Research reveals that consumers are more likely to show loyalty towards a brand if they share values. As such, experiential marketing proves highly effective in building brand loyalty. It helps marketers in creating a memorable experience for consumers by overcoming various communication challenges. If you consumers feel that they can continue purchasing from you after attending your marketing event, perhaps you have succeeded in gaining their loyalty.

 Influencers and earned media

Influencers and earned media are important assets that a fledgling brand should treasure. It’s highly unlikely for newspapers and television to cover your product or service if you promote it through a press conference. But an interactive and engaging experiential marketing activation can earn you the goodwill of influencers, who are likely to spread the word about your brand. It is, thus, a great way to share your brand’s story and generate awareness in the market.

Analytics

Last but not the least, experiential marketing campaigns, especially the ones run on social media, provide useful analytical data relating to their performance. Likes, shares, and comments are a good way to measure performance on social media. Live-events also provide useful data relating to consumer behavior and brand’s engagement. If an event sets your key metrics soaring, experiential marketing is perhaps what your business needs.

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