Chasing audience

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Advertising has always been charged on how many people a product attracts that’s why advertising on television was always so expensive. Things haven’t changed that much-it’s just the people aren’t in the same places any more.

Think about it in terms of the new media platforms that have evolved over the last twenty years or so ago:

Television advertising expected high revenues from advertising and with just three channels to advertise on the expected audience was vast- in 2014 my Sky remote channel numbers go up to 999 so the audience will be diluted significantly and scattered across many channels.

Radio advertising-in my youth there was Radio 1,2 3 and 4-I can’t remember any others so again advertising could dictate high prices. in 2014 there is a radio station for every era and genre. There are literally hundreds and many change their target audience as figures rise or decline. DAB Radio has meant that radio listeners don’t have to only listen to local stations because that’s all they can get a signal for.

Newspaper advertising also dictated high prices as competition in the news sector was minimal-if you wanted news you read a paper or watched the news bulletin on TV. 2014 if you want news you find it on your mobile phone, on you laptop, on a tablet, in a newspaper, on the radio or on the TV. News travels via social media-news is accessible, can be localised or national and can be tailored to suit the reader.

There has been a significant change over the last couple of years-when the audience for content shifted to online the radio, television and newspaper industry creaked-some toppled, some completely lost their share of the market by refusing to accept the significance of the internet and some lost their heads.

But….

Some-after a little dunking under the water-re emerged as some of the Worlds most powerful magnets for the audience every advertiser wants.

Take for example the Daily Mail-a newspaper which now has more UK visits than any other newspaper site. It is read across the globe. Combine its audience with the printed title and the Mail reach a significant amount of people.

The BBC-once seen as channel losing it’s audience to younger, funkier channels-now reaches an audience of 256 million people per week with combines reach of television and online platforms. It’s phenomenal.

I work for the South Wales Evening Post newspaper and on an average week we reach an audience of over half a million people. When I began working in the industry 12 years ago, with a newspaper only we reached 172,000 people. It’s an amazing transition. Our website attracts close to one million unique users on an average month. It doesn’t feel real. I’ve seen the newspaper industry seem like the underdog in media as people only talk about losing circulation-with confidence and with pride I can say that my products can reach a vast local audience. It’s a lot more intelligent, it’s more flexible and what’s more I have a revived passion for the business because like in the old days we are at the top of our game.

So my advice to you today is don’t buy advertising on price-buy it on audience.

A former boss of mine used to say ‘You get what you pay for’-if something’s cheap then it probably doesn’t command a high audience.

An advert without an audience viewing it is like a football match with no crowd.

 

Tempt Me

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As an advertising manager I’m really interested in how people buy but when advising customers I think about how I buy and apply it to campaigns if relevant.

I’ve had some really good buying experiences which have really made me aware of how differently we operate with all the choice we have.

I very rarely buy on impulse now-I can shop online for days/weeks for something and never actually buy anything.

I visit lots of different sites before I buy too.

More importantly I am often ‘tempted to buy’

Here’s a couple of examples:

Every year I help to organise a food and drink festival and every year I think what I’d like to buy and yes-it’s always a locally sourced, delicious sounding product like Welsh Cheese.

That was before I used Facebook as a marketing tool for the event.

With every exhibitor I signed up a new post was added to the event to give all attendees a tempting preview of what they could buy. As I added the exhibitors to the group I liked some of the companies pages too.

You know what I’m building up to don’t you?

I bet you think I came away from the event with lots of delicious goodies don’t you.

Well I did but it was some lovely soya wax candles!

What?

Why did I buy that?

While I was attracting over 100 people to the event with my marketing on Facebook one customers website I’d liked was busy tempting people directly to their stall.

Every day a new customer testimonial was added to the website.

Every day a new candle scent was talked about.

Every day the enthusiasm of the owner reached me and before long I was virtually shopping and choosing what I’d like. I didn’t mean to but sub consciously the good things I was reading started to create a need.

I need candles! I can’t live without candles! These candles burn for longer! These are the best candles around!

I almost couldn’t wait to get to the stall and buy my candles. I chose lavender, lime and vanilla and a burner. I got home and lit the candles and thought -‘She was right-they do smell great’

So my point it that you heavily influence buying purchase by advertising and marketing in print and online by:

  • Being enthusiastic
  • Using customer testimonials
  • Describing your products
  • Let people know where they can get them
  • Thank people for the feedback they give
  • Showing your passion for your business

My other great example is slightly different but just as powerful.

I recently organised a health and well being fair which was run in conjunction with Tara Hammett- a personal trainer and TV personality. Apart from feeling like a sloth standing beside this glowing, sporty, healthy lady I saw how her passion for her business has made her so successful.

Tara reaches out to her ‘customers’ by giving away free content-you can go on to YouTube and watch her giving health and fitness advice, you can add her on Facebook and ask her questions at any time and she’s happy to reply, she’s written a book giving a wealth of her experience away plus scientific nutritional advice tips, you can join her fitness programme or follow her on Twitter.

Wherever you engage with Tara she is the same enthusiastic role model that inspires people on a daily basis.

She is approachable which is really important in todays society.

I wanted to join her fitness programme, I wanted to be fitter and healthier but more importantly I believed in her brand as I trust her and admire her.

This is such an excellent idea of personal marketing that I had to share it with you.

There is one thing about Tara though that you do need to know-she invented chocolate sprouts. Don’t diss them before you’ve tried them-they are actually very nice.

My message today is simple really-time spend marketing yourself in as many places as you can, to as many people as you with as much enthusiasm as you can will escalate your business in a matter of time.

It’s hard to quantify but every time you engage you could be slowly tempting a person to buy from you.

Invest in your business today but make people know it I you.

Be the King and make your move!

Has the internet changed the journey

people make when buying a car?

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Well it’s certainly added another researching tool in to the equation.

Auto shoppers now use on average 18.2 different sources of information-from TV, news articles, online, family etc. to finally form their decision

‘The zero moment of truth for automotive study’

Marketing and advertising for car dealerships has never been so important. It needs to target as many of those 18.2 sources as possible-now that’s no mean feat.

Google’s study which can be found above really delves deep in to the psyche of a car buyer. It might make you think your customer targeting is a little archaic but it’s really important to know these trends.

I have picked out some key facts from the report for you-things I think can provide enlightenment to local new and used car dealers:

  • Shoppers take several months to go from decision to action
  • Shoppers clearly identify in person experiences as the most influential-test driving, visiting the dealership etc.
  • The internet has added a new stage to the car buying process-pre-shopping
  • Top stimuluses’ for buying a car include TV advertising, magazine articles, newspaper articles, direct mail and advert in newspaper
  • Test drives were listed as the number one decision influencer
  • Second to a test drive looking at a car was a major influence
  • In newspapers people react most to price guides and special offers, financing options and style.
  • 59% of online car buyers were looking at style as a priority
  • People who buys cars more frequently use almost 4 more sources in their search than people who buy less cars

So what does this mean for car dealers?

I would suggest not putting your marketing budget in just one place-advertising to sell cars now means promoting via social media, online advertising, newspaper and magazine advertising, own website, search engine optimisation and branding.

I was going to say car buyers are much more savvy these days but I don’t think that’s actually true.

There are so many choices and so much information available it is possible to completely change a purchasers mind several times advertising/marketing needs to be consistent and the message needs to change to suit the medium. And the purchaser.

The average person test drives 2-3 cars.

Consumers love online video.

In the UK 23% of people experience “switchbacks” where they move backward into earlier stages of the journey.

It’s such an exciting market to be part of-a little bit like a game of chess.  If you think strategically then the other players piece of the market can be yours.

A sample a marketing campaign that encompasses some of the research data available might consist of:

Magazine article detailing a test drive of a new vehicle listing pro’s and con’s plus sleek images to target reader type.

Online advertising on an influential website to include a video of the latest car being test driven or link to national ad campaign video

Search engine optimisation to look at key search criteria (Linked with Google keyword tool)
Newspaper advertising to promote a good price, finance deal plus car profile

Social media to capture wants/ already has/ knows someone who has feedback

Blog to talk in a frank and honest way about cars in your showroom, adding in personal experience, likes, dislikes and knowledge.

This is a very broad basis for a campaign-what matters is that the reason and logic is behind each reason for advertising.

All you need to remember is

‘I WANT TO BE IN AS MANY OF THE 18.2 INFLUENCIAL SOURCES OF INFORMATION AS POSSIBLE TO BE IN WITHT HE BEST CHANCE OF GETTING PEOPLE IN TO MY SHOWROOM-ONCE THEY’RE IN I HAVE MY BEST CHANCE OF SELLING THEM A CAR’

Let me know if I can help you in any way

Digital Disruption In The Market Place

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I read today that digital offerings are disrupting all of the traditional ways we receive information-television, press, radio, film and magazines. It offers something new to people where that was a gap in the market-and slowly it will replace them.

It’s happened plenty of times before so don’t think this is something new:

THEN Camera film + camera = printed photographs.

NOW Instagram, Facebook, Smart Phones= Storage of photos online

Another example:

WAS Records, then tapes, then CD’s, then ipods

NOW Online music streaming.

Now I work for a newspaper so you must be thinking I’ll soon be out of work soon and the newspaper will close.

Well I can say with hand on my heart that I have never found my job as exciting as it is now. I don’t know what the future has in store for me but I do know that I’m not afraid to go with the changes.

I bring material home to read on digital advertising-I’m understanding how much investment there is in the UK economy on digital advertising and as a frequent internet user I am the future. You can’t pretend to embrace change-if you don’t believe in it I say don’t go along with it.

Take for example this about use of devices through the day:

In the morning mobile internet devices are heavily used as people log on during their commute to work- that’s me-I switch on in the car once I’ve parked in the morning! Tabletop PC’s and laptop useage is high during 9am to 6pm when people spend a lot of time in work-that’s me! And tablet use is highest in the evening when people are browsing the internet at home. That’s me!

So how could I not love digital advertising when I am a typical digital advertisers target?

As an events sales manager in work I recently thought I’d try setting up my events on Facebook. I wasn’t really expecting too much.

I cannot tell you how much it has transformed the way I work.

I now have my Facebook on all days in work as people contact me for information on the events all day. Every time an exhibitor comes on board I post their info on Facebook.

More importantly I am engaging with people more than I ever did before. And I hope I’m creating enthusiasm and brand awareness for my events and my company.

It sounds childish to say I’m excited but I genuinely am.

I’m not a sales manager any more-I’m a sales and relationships manager. I’m not just selling-I’m creating products/events and campaigns that provide solutions to businesses and around it I’m adding marketing information relevant to the events.

With my events I am:

  • Encouraging likes for local businesses
  • Enabling businesses to network with each other
  • Reaching a new community of people to engage with
  • Providing a new method of getting in touch with me
  • Encouraging engagement with my brand
  • Creating a sense of expectation
  • Meeting new people and contacts

I’m just a beginner and don’t profess to be a social media expert but enjoyment comes first in anything.

Here are my events if you’d like to see how I’m getting on:

https://www.facebook.com/events/333304756808170/?notif_t=plan_user_joined

https://www.facebook.com/events/625080507559214/

https://www.facebook.com/events/541943052560755/

If you have any questions please get in touch

All the best

Dropping Balls

Are you finding it hard to market and advertise your business because you have so much to do and so little time?

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Over the years I have seen a lot of businesses go through challenging economic times for differing reasons and sadly cut backs are often made by reducing headcounts in marketing positions, admin positions and in advertising budgets.

With so many balls in the air you are bound to drop one.

I am yet to hear any business say in my 13 years experience that they have had an advertising budget increase!

So what happens?

  • Companies stop advertising themselves and become invisible to their customers which can result slowly in loss of business.
  • Employees have increased workloads covering admin duties leaving less time for strategic thinking/planning
  • Companies stop marketing themselves and lose their footing with their competitors

There are tools out there that can help you, however,  if you are finding it hard to juggle all these balls and run a business.

BUFFER

I’m really lucky to have a dedicated social media guru in my workplace who has helped me progress from a ‘tinkler’ on the internet to a blogger, Tweeter and social media competent. You just need to want to do it.

Buffer is a website that will schedule Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter posts to a time you choose depending on what audience you want to reach.

If you have no time in the day to use social media then don’t worry-spend a few minutes scheduling posts and they will be posted while you are working.

Buffer works best on Google Chrome because you can install an app that let’s you post directly from the web pages you are looking at.

Firstly join Buffer bufferapp.com

Link the accounts you want to post to

Share information now or buffer for later

You’ll look like you’re socially active all day-and you don’t even need to switch on your laptop.

TWERIOD

www.tweriod.com will show you what times your audience is most active. There will be a greater chance of your messages being seen if you schedule them on Buffer to the times Tweriod recommends.

ADVERTISING

(You knew I’d have to mention it)

I do really believe advertising is important to any business. Think of it as employing salespeople- an advert in a newspaper, on a website or a magazine can sell your products for you and broadcast your marketing message to hundreds if not thousands of people. Most companies will design the advertisement for you-kind ones will send it to you for you to include on your social media sites and like Buffer it will be working for you while you manage your business.

GET OUT FROM BEHIND YOUR DESK

The busier we get the more we can get caught up in admin. It’s a catch 22 situation-the more emails you send the more replies you get and before you know it all you’ve done is email. It doesn’t hurt every now and again to turn your emails off with an automatic reply saying all emails will be dealt with later. Or just ask people to ring if it’s urgent.  Lift your head up, get our of your chair and engage with your customers and employees.

Last week I went out on five appointments where I’m usually office based. It increased my enthusiasm for a job I already love-it reminded me why I enjoy it and gave me time away from the admin that can sometimes seem overwhelming. It’s important to help yourself climb out of what can sometimes seem like a quagmire of work and remember what’s important.

Keep those balls in the air and enjoy your week.

Please let me know if I can help you in any way

I Don’t Have A Wooden Heart

I might enjoy online shopping but I don’t have a wooden heart.

I still enjoy it when a business offers me excellent customer service and don’t hide behind e-commerce.

I’ll give you a good example-I bought some new trainers on Ebay last week-straight away I had an email me thanking me for paying so quickly. Then they offered to reduce my costs if the shoes weren’t posted in the box and then another email asking if I had received my refund. The trainers arrived 2 days after ordering. I was really impressed.

Even thought the transaction could have gone through without any exchange I felt customer service was high on the E-shops priorities and I would definitely recommend them.

It’s really easy when dealing with customers who can order in online shops or comment in groups on social media to be completely faceless but a thank you or a message to show that you appreciate a customers time can go a long way.

Is online customer service important? Great infographic below for you.

Thanks for reading my blog-don’t treat your customers like they’re made of wood

Customer Service In Social Media - Visual.ly

Who’d Have Thunk It?

work-hard

An advertiser called me today in a last ditched attempt to get his venue full for New Years Eve because he thought just by having a well known local band booked that people would come. I think he’d been watching Wayne’s World and truly believed if ‘You build it they will come’

When planning an event treat the event a bit like a shop-what are people going to buy in your shop? Booking a local band, cabaret artist, musician or celebrity etc. is the ‘product’ people will buy from you.

How will people buy from you? Think of how a shop advertises-they advertise in newspapers, on radio, they promote themselves with a sign outside the shop, promotes their wares on their website and via social media like Twitter and Facebook.

A busy shop doesn’t happen by accident and your event won’t be busy if you don’t ‘sell your wares to your public’

The customer who called me today hadn’t promoted the event on his own website-to the visitors which are his target audience. He hadn’t put it on Facebook either but would get his son to do it later.

Why wasn’t he fully booked by now he asked me.

RESEARCH!

It’s simple-people spend hours researching every aspect of their life-where are they going, what are they buying, who sells it etc.

If you’re not online you’ll start falling behind the competition.

You’ve got to start taking all this seriously if you want your business to survive in the future.

Learn how to market your business on Facebook- it’s a marketing tool and there is an art to it. Done badly and it can work against you. Learn how to use Twitter. Learn learn learn.

Someone said to me recently that they went on a short course to learn about social media and now update their pages while watching Eastenders. Don’t think of this as more work-think of it as networking.

If you need to advertise an event do it early and plan your campaign because you can’t expect a Wayne’s World moment to save the day.

The real motto is ‘Work hard and he bookings will come’

Repetition Builds Reputation

“Repetition is the mother of all skill.”
~ Tony Robbins, author of Unlimited Power

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Have you ever found yourself singing an advertising jingle when you haven’t heard it that day?

Reptition can build a reputation so you need to make sure that the message you are repeating is the right one.

A few years ago customers were allowed to advertise just once in my classified section of the newspaper but I knew that the customers wouldn’t get a response so I changed the packages to make them cheaper per night but the smallest frequency package became six night in a row. It gives customers the chance of repeating their message and with the repettion comes the sales.

I saw the classified section grow in size and got testimonials from our clients to say how many jobs they were booking.

Years ago I was taught that series campaigns worked best for the clients as different people read the newspaper every day-it’s no different nnow with online advertising-show people an advertisement once and you’ll be forgotton about-show them several times and the message starts to sink in.

Types of Repetition

The idea behind repetition is that when the consumer goes to buy a particular product, the name of your brand is the first one that comes to mind. There are several different types of advertising repetition. One is simply to repeat the same advertisement, such as a television commercial, over and over. For example, the same commercial may be broadcast at each ad break of a show. Another way to use repetition is to place the product or brand in as many places as possible. For example, print ads in newspapers and magazines, television ads, radio ads and utilize product placement on television shows or in movies. Another type of repetition is to use ads that are produced with similar styles, but have a slightly different final product. For example, television ads that use the same actors, but in different scenarios.

Now that companies can utilize social media brand repetition is even easier because you can ‘talk’ to you customers on lots of different channels.

I’m going to use a really obvious example of Coca Cola- Holidays Are Coming. The message is rife through Facebook as people photograph the Coca Cola bus, it’s on television and across most advertising channels-not all paid for I might add. The slogan has almost become synonymous with the brand.

You don’t need to be a huge company to make this work for you-just create a slogan or a message and repeat it everywhere you advertise.

How do I create a slogan?-when you have the time watch this video-it’s 16 minutes long but instead of telling you what to do it shows you how others are doing it

Don’t rush in to your campaign-if done right the same slogan can last you for years-maybe pick one of these (Don’t pick them all-just pick one:

  • Repeat your company ethos
  • Repeat why you are different from everyone else
  • Repeat why you are the best
  • Repeat what is unique about you
  • Repeat what you are all about

Example:

Rons Second Hand Car Garage- Never giving you The Runaround

Monastry College- Bringing Life In To Learning

Johns MOT’s- Servicing The Community Since 1979

Have a good week-hope to see your business advertising soon

A Closed Shop Is A Shop That Will Close

Right now is your shop closed?
closing

By closed I mean are your doors are locked, the lights turned off and your business day is over?

Or is your shop always open?-even when your shop door is locked and the lights are out your Facebook page is still buzzing with interest, your Twitter account is getting messages, you are networking on Linked in and people are buying from your online e-commerce shop.

Are you the business owner who says there’s no point me having a social media site when all people do is put up photographs of what they’ve eaten for tea?

If you are the business that is closed then you need to know how much business you are potentially missing out on.

Most people are not browsing the internet for personal reasons in work (Although we’ve all seen the person who is in work and supposedly too busy to help when they have a shopping website open-come on we’ve all been there)

So when do we browse?

*Lunch break

*After work

*Break time

*Weekends

And ere are a few stats on what people do online during their own time:

  • 41% if people like or followed a brand on a social media website
  • 43% of people found, bought or used a voucher
  • 59% of people found things to do/places to visit locally
  • 76% of people accessed social website

And wait for it

92% of people shopped online!

Internet users are browsing, researching, shopping and BUYING which is why you cannot afford to have a closed business.

But I Don’t have the time?

Find the time or pay someone to set up your ‘shop’ for you.

Don’t think of social media or websites as luxuries-these are necessities of any business.

Think of them in the same way you think of your shop sign, your advert in the phone book, your shop window.

Think of social media as a wage you need to pay because if you do it right websites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn can tell more people about your business and what you are doing than any employee ever could.

I’m getting excited now- I want to shout out loud for you to believe, believe in the power of social media, create an open all hours shop and more importantly be a success.

Ok so calming down a bit now I need to end this blog-I have online shopping to do and a of course I want to see what my friends had for tea

Have a good week

Information on internet user habits taken from the great infographic below:
What do you do online?
What do you do online? is an infographic that was produced by Qmee

Cross Dressing and Divorce?

You don’t always have to be in full on sales mode to make social media work for you.

On November 24th 2013 Noah’s Yard in Uplands, Swansea changed their sign (As they do on a frequent basis) to Paul…I’m Divorcing you!

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Not the nicest of things to write perhaps but what did it do for Noahs?

300 people liked the post

38 people shared the post

37 people commented on it

It made front page news in the South Wales Evening Post both in print and online- four times with different updates!

And wait for it……. it also made The Sun newspaper too!

Wow!

So what’s my point?

My point is that hundreds of people engaged with Noah’s Yard and they weren’t trying to sell a thing.

  1. It brought their business to the attention of new customers
  2. It got people engaging with their Facebook page
  3. It got people talking about their business

How much would you pay to get coverage like this in the media?

I can tell you that if this was charged advertising space then the bill would be thousands!

As a newspaper we had a story which went viral meaning it was viewed all over the world-was it a sports story? Was it groundbreaking news? Was it a leak? No it was a video of a group of men dressed as women on a night out:

http://www.thisissouthwales.co.uk/Drag-queen-floors-thugs-Swansea-street-fight/story-12414029-detail/story.html#axzz2mKGExfP1

It’s not easy to get this exposure-some will happen by chance but you can be sucessful at being creative in the ways that you target your local audience.

It’s easy for me to tell you what not to do:

  1. Don’t always be in sell, sell, sell mode
  2. Engage with your audience and encourage participation
  3. Think of quirky things you can share about your business or business type.

I’ll add a great inforgraphic to my blog later for you to see a little more on how this works