Things You Need To Know About Email Marketing

About Email Marketing

Email marketing is a powerful material marketing strategy that many ecommerce organizations use today. You might or might not receive those automated emails businesses send out when you become a new customer to their email list. To some they might appear pesky, but truthfully, if you use efficient email marketing methods, you can in fact increase your customer commitment enormously.

Anytime a company sends out an e-mail, aside from order confirmations and direct actions to consumer questions, it could be thought about a type of email marketing. Email marketing is one segment of web marketing, which encompasses internet marketing via websites, social networks, blog sites, and more.

Email marketing can include newsletters with updates on the company, or promos of sales and unique deals for subscribers. Marketing e-mails might likewise look for to share a general message on the company’s behalf, such as in the wake of a natural disaster or company scandal.

At its finest, email marketing permits companies to keep their consumers notified and tailor their marketing messages to their audience. At its worst, this type of marketing can drive customers away with constantly bothersome spam e-mails.

Advantage of Email Marketing

What is the Advantage of Email Marketing?

Email marketing is useful since it is fast, efficient, and economical. Utilizing this technique of marketing supplies you the methods of reaching out to prospective consumers and retaining existing ones by encouraging repeat visits to a site.

In addition, emailing is the leading approach e-mail marketers use to support because transform.

A short history of email

The very first email was sent out in 1971 by a computer system engineer called Ray Tomlinson. The message he sent was simply a string of numbers and letters, however it was the start of a new era of interaction. Tomlinson was likewise the individual who presented the use of the “@” symbol in e-mail addresses.

In 1978, a marketing supervisor at Digital Equipment Corp named Gary Thuerk used this new method of direct communication to send the very first business email to let people know about a new product. His email list only had 400 addresses, but the emails he sent led to about $13 million in sales.

By the ’90s, the web had actually become commercially readily available to the masses. The method people communicated with one another started to change considerably, and online marketers discovered that email could be an efficient way to promote. The introduction of marketing e-mails likewise introduced the requirement for regulatory updates; the U.K.’s Data Defense Act, for example, was adapted to need a “pull out” option for all marketing e-mails.

How Email Marketing Functions

It’s easy to establish and track an e-mail marketing project, which makes it accessible for small companies. You can include a newsletter sign-up alternative to your website, for example. As people register, you can send newsletters to a growing audience. You can also direct clients to the newsletter from your social networks profiles.

A regular newsletter is a simple and reliable method to send out updates about your company, upcoming events, and special offers. Email software application likewise makes it simple to schedule automated marketing e-mails for customers who haven’t purchased just recently.

Email marketing enables you to target specific groups of consumers and even specific individuals. Using specific consumers unique birthday offers on product or services is one method to do this.

Holiday 2020 is do or die for many SMBs

Small business economic activity represents about 44% of U.S. gross domestic product. This critical business segment has suffered disproportionately from COVID-19’s toll on the economy. Now, as are in the all-important holiday quarter, what’s the current outlook for small businesses (SMBs)?

Many pundits and vendors serving the SMB market have been promoting and promising “resilience” for months. A new report from Yelp offers some support for this. But other data argue that challenges for SMBs and, by extension, their marketing providers will persist and may even intensify in the months ahead.

Hopeful signs of recovery

Yelp’s just-released Economic Average Report (or YEA) focuses on new business openings and reopenings during Q3 in the restaurant and food vertical. The report says that in Q3 new restaurant and food-business openings compared favorably to 2019 (“pre-pandemic levels”), despite the especially difficult circumstances of 2020.

That’s quite encouraging and argues a recovery is underway.

Source: Yelp (Oct. 2020)

SMB openings and reopenings across verticals

Yelp also identifies the most “resilient” places in the U.S., as measured by growth in new business openings from Q2 to Q3. These were North Dakota, Washington, D.C., Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Wyoming. States with the largest number of business openings overall in Q3 were California, Texas, Florida, New York and Washington.

Yelp data reflect that businesses across a range of verticals also reopened in September. They include preschools and childcare centers, gyms, salons, bike repair shops and home services businesses. Financial services also reopened in Q3 (banks, insurance companies, tax services) as did retail stores, according to Yelp.

Simultaneously, Yelp observed increased consumer demand in Q3 across many categories as people “return[ed] to their pre-pandemic activities” — for better and for worse.

Vulnerable to safety concerns

As COVID cases in many states surge to their highest levels in months, concerned consumers may wind up spending most of their Q4 holiday dollars online and not in stores. Adobe data indicate that e-commerce sales growth has cooled as consumers head back to stores. But, store visitation is dependent on consumer perceptions of safety.

Read: What Prime Day signals for 2020 holiday retail

Right now, the majority of Americans still don’t feel safe in shopping malls — a surrogate for in-store shopping generally — though trends may vary somewhat by location. Unfortunately, we can’t expect anything significant to change before the end of the year. There are also multiple surveys suggesting that:

According to an early October consumer survey of more than 5,000 U.S. adults from Alignable, 32% of respondents said they would be spending more money at locally owned businesses in Q4. However, the large majority (68%) said they would be spending most of their money online this year (read: Amazon and big box retail).

This comes despite a number of surveys from firms like Accenture and McKinsey indicating heightened consumer interest in supporting small businesses and shopping locally. (Attitudes and behavior often diverge.)

U.S. Census Bureau survey data from mid-October shows that 75% of SMBs have seen a significant (30.2%) or moderate (44.6%) negative impact from COVID. More specifically, a Q3 SMB survey from Alignable found that “42% of small business owners anticipated revenues [in Q4] below what they needed to stay in business.”

That means if Q4 passes them by, vast numbers of SMBs could fail or decide to simply shut their doors in 2021.

What SMBs must do now to the meet the Q4 challenge

The internet will be the starting point for most consumer shopping journeys this holiday season, whether they conclude online or offline (BOPIS). That means a fully optimized online presence is critical. SMBs won’t be able to count on foot traffic and in-store browsing as much as in years past.

It’s too late to rebuild websites for holiday 2020. But SMBs can still claim and optimize profiles on a few key sites to maximize their online visibility:

All of these sites offer free online presence tools. However, most businesses have yet to take advantage of Nextdoor Business Pages and promotional tools so there are still “early mover” opportunities.

Read: Nextdoor emerges as a location marketing destination

Google has continued to add more transactional capabilities to GMB and Facebook and Instagram now offer SMB-friendly e-commerce capabilities with Shops and other features. In an ideal world SMB retailers would have their inventory online but, in the absence of that, key products and specials can be promoted through Google Posts.

SMBs working with agencies are fortunate and probably in a reasonable position to whether the storm. Those that are not, which is most smaller SMBs, are going to have a much tougher time. They should focus their efforts first and foremost on Google, which dominates local search usage.

There’s evidence that a Google-only strategy can succeed, if there isn’t time or bandwidth for other channels and properties.


About The Author

What is Email Marketing?

email marketing

Email marketing is a powerful content marketing method that many ecommerce organizations use today. You may or might not get those automated e-mails services send when you become a new customer to their email list. To some they may appear pesky, however honestly, if you make use of effective e-mail marketing techniques, you can in fact increase your customer commitment enormously.

Anytime a company sends out an email, aside from order verifications and direct reactions to client concerns, it could be thought about a type of email marketing. Email marketing is one section of online marketing, which includes online marketing by means of sites, social networks, blogs, and more.

Email marketing can consist of newsletters with updates on the company, or promos of sales and special offers for subscribers. Marketing emails may also seek to share a general message on the company’s behalf, such as in the wake of a natural disaster or company scandal.

At its best, email marketing permits organizations to keep their consumers notified and customize their marketing messages to their audience. At its worst, this kind of marketing can drive clients away with persistently irritating spam e-mails.

A brief history of e-mail

The really first email was sent in 1971 by a computer system engineer named Ray Tomlinson. The message he sent out was just a string of numbers and letters, however it was the beginning of a new era of communication. Tomlinson was also the individual who introduced the use of the “@” symbol in e-mail addresses.

In 1978, a marketing manager at Digital Devices Corp named Gary Thuerk utilized this new method of direct communication to send out the very first industrial email to let individuals understand about a new item. His e-mail list just had 400 addresses, but the e-mails he sent led to about $13 million in sales.

By the ’90s, the internet had become commercially readily available to the masses. The method people communicated with one another started to alter drastically, and marketers discovered that email could be an effective way to promote. The introduction of marketing e-mails likewise ushered in the requirement for regulatory updates; the U.K.’s Data Protection Act, for example, was gotten used to require an “pull out” option for all marketing emails.

How Email Marketing Works

It’s easy to set up and track an email marketing project that makes it accessible for small companies. You can include a newsletter sign-up alternative to your website, for example. As individuals register, you can send newsletters to a growing audience. You can likewise direct clients to the newsletter from your social networks profiles.

A regular newsletter is a simple and efficient method to send updates about your company, upcoming events, and special offers. Email software likewise makes it simple to arrange automatic marketing e-mails for consumers who haven’t acquired recently.

Email marketing permits you to target particular groups of clients or even particular people. Providing private consumers unique birthday deals on product or services is one way to do this.

What is the Advantage of Email Marketing?

Email marketing is helpful due to the fact that it is quick, effective, and affordable. Using this technique of marketing supplies you the ways of connecting to prospective consumers and retaining existing ones by motivating repeat see to a website.

In addition, emailing is the leading technique email marketers utilize to nurture cause transform.

Salesforce reinvents its flagship conference as Dreamforce To You

There will be a Dreamforce after all in 2020, but it will be virtual of course. But it will not be squeezed into a few days, and tickets will not cost upwards of $1,500. This year’s Dreamforce, re-branded as Dreamforce To You, is an extended program of thought leadership, community participation and entertainment, and it’s free to all.

The program. The event will kick off with CEO Marc Benioff’s keynote on November 12, and will run through an unspecified date in December.

We spoke exclusively to Salesforce CMO Stephanie Buscemi about the thinking behind the re-shaping of Dreamforce — and what to expect.

Should we do Dreamforce at all? “Near the beginning of the pandemic,” said Buscemi, “so many of our customers turned inward to stabilize their business and their employees, so they weren’t asking us about Dreamforce; and we weren’t communicating about it, because it would have felt a little tone-deaf. In the early stages of the pandemic, it was very much crisis communications.”

As the months passed, Buscemi observed Salesforce customers transforming their careers and their businesses. “Those Trailblazers helped inform what we’re announcing here,” she said. “We started a dialogue with them and the community at large about whether we would do Dreamforce at all and could it be done virtually?”

The challenge was significant. “We joke, but it’s true: it’s part tech conference, part rock concert, part a coming together of world leaders, and part a wellness retreat. There’s so much packed in there that we started to uncouple it and ask what does the community need right now, and what can be pushed to the side?”

Relevance is critical. The unequivocal message from stakeholders, Buscemi told us, was that relevance — conversations about the things we’re dealing with right now — was critical. “People’s appetite for a product pitch isn’t there.”

People are interested in how to manage for the crisis, how to support customer success — “And speed,” she said. “There are customers who had three-year road maps for digital acceleration, and they have done more in the last three months than they had planned the three-year road maps. We’re all surprising ourselves at what we’re capable of getting done — when forced.”

The longer program. In its in-person incarnation, Dreamforce was squeezed essentially into a handful of long days, with countless after-parties echoing through the San Francisco night. “It’s a lot to ask people to sit for that long and engage,” she said. “While we heard really clearly from our customers that they wanted us to bring them together, that they loved the connectiveness of the community, we all agreed that because Dreamforce had been a four-day event in San Francisco, to make it a four-day virtual event wasn’t going to work.”

The decision was taken to extend the time period, and acknowledge that people are willing to engage for much shorter periods in a virtual format. “Our live keynote every year was 90 minutes, and often more than that,” said Buscemi. The “sweet spot” for a virtual keynote, she said, was about 18 minutes. “Then you start to lose people because you’re competing with all the things around them.”

The intention is to determine the right length for a presentation, the right length for a panel discussion, and the right number of people for a discussion in a virtual forum. “Birds of a feather” discussions will take place among much smaller groups: “If you try to do that with 20 people online, people don’t get seen.”

This year’s content. We asked Buscemi what attendees should expect. “Our keynote will feature our CEO Marc Benioff, and he’ll talk about our path forward together in this new normal. If we have to find a silver lining in the pandemic, it has been a massive accelerator for digital transformation, and we’ll be showcasing what leading companies have been doing over the last six months, not just to survive in the pandemic, but frankly thrive.”

The rest of the program has yet to be officially announced.

Giving back. The unavoidable loss of an in-person Dreamforce this year will have an immense negative impact on the San Francisco hospitality industry. In a normal year, restaurants, bars and hotels operate at maximum capacity throughout Dreamforce week. It’s heartening then to see Salesforce donating $2 million to San Francisco small businesses.

“This is our headquarters,” said Buscemi. “The city of San Francisco has been so fantastic to Salesforce for fifteen years plus of delivering Dreamforce. We want to be there to help small businesses through this time.” Salesforce will donate an additional $3 million to organizations addressing hunger, health equity,racial inequality, and climate change.

In 2019, Dreamforce was attended by some 170,000 people, many of them paying high rates for tickets. Was the decision to make this a free event difficult? “The world is in crisis. I remember Maya Angelou’s saying, ‘At the end of the day, people remember how you made them feel.’ We want our customers on the other side of whenever this vaccine is, when we’re all fully back in our offices, to remember how we made them feel.”

Why we care. The sheer scale of Dreamforce, which effectively takes over a major U.S. city each year — in normal times — makes it more than just a Salesforce event. Indeed, martech vendors who are not Salesforce partners squeeze their own events into the city around the same time to grab the attention of the six-figure audience. The way Dreamforce has been restructured, and how it now performs, will be examined closely by anyone interested in virtual events.

Note: An earlier version of this story gave more details of the program following the keynote. We now understand that schedule is not officially announced today.

This story first appeared on MarTech Today.


About The Author

Kim Davis is the Editorial Director of MarTech Today. Born in London, but a New Yorker for over two decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space. He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020. Prior to working in tech journalism, Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.

Marsbot is Foursquare for AirPods

Foursquare began life as a gamified social “check-in” app, which offered helpful tips for others as they competed to become “the mayor” of local venues. It evolved into a local search purveyor but after adoption plateaued and investors grew restless, the company pivoted to location intelligence. And although the Foursquare app continues to exist it’s now primarily a first party data source for the B2B analytics business.

Clippy meets Her. With Marsbot, company founder Dennis Crowley has effectively reinvented Foursquare for audio. Dubbed “an experiment,” Crowley calls it “a lightweight virtual assistant that proactively whispers local recommendations (and other fun snippets) into your headphones or earbuds as you’re walking around.” With tongue somewhat in cheek, he describes Marsbot as a cross between the original Foursquare, Microsoft Word’s Clippy and the virtual assistant from the film “Her.”

Right now Marsbot is only available for iOS but an Android app is coming. It’s a mobile app, but most of the action happens in your earbuds.

As users walk around town, Marsbot “will proactively whisper things to you that you may find interesting.” Things in this case can include places, buildings, public art or people. If you allow it, the app will announce to other Marsbot users that you’re nearby and vice-versa. People can also record audio snippets about places that others will hear.

Marsbot for iOS

A basic use case involves being in a restaurant (at some point in the future) and getting tips about menu items in your ear. It will also alert you without a prompt that there are other interesting places close by. However, users must be in or very near places for Marsbot to activate.

100 million users on deck. This is essentially the same vision Crowley had for Foursquare, transplanted to AirPods. He often spoke in the early days of the company about “making cities easier to use.” Marsbot seeks to leverage Foursquare’s local data and user-generated content to fulfill that promise via augmented reality, which isn’t limited to your smartphone’s camera.

There may be more than 100 million people in the U.S. who own AirPods or an equivalent set of earbuds. That’s an already massive installed base of potential users.

A virtual assistant in your earbuds that can make you smarter or enhance your experience of the world is more compelling than glasses (see Google Goggles). You also don’t need to invoke Marsbot with a “hotword” like “Hey Google.” It uses your location — right now it has to be “always on” — to trigger audio notifications.

The idea is inspired; the execution will be key to whether people adopt and use it. Regardless, Marsbot points the way toward a new category of augmented reality audio apps that offer all sorts of intriguing possibilities.

Why we care. The marketing implications here are fairly obvious: brand awareness or local ad opportunities tied to location. Once in a venue, the user could also be prompted to take advantage of a special offer. But monetization will follow adoption if Marsbot can get that far.

Getting the user experience right, however, will be tricky. What’s more, currently marginal use cases such as notifying you about nearby friends could become dominant. Hopefully Foursquare will stick with the app, partly because it could become a model for a host of interesting new audio AR experiences.


About The Author

Greg Sterling is a Contributing Editor to Search Engine Land, a member of the programming team for SMX events and the VP, Market Insights at Uberall.

How 5G will pave the way for mobile app development

  • 30-second summary: Consumers ‘and app developers’ wish came to life in part when the White House announced the DoD will “relinquish 100MHz of 3.5 GHz spectrum for commercial use, a procedure that will enhance U.S. 5G networks over the next 2 years.”
  • These developments will prepare for some quite cool app experiences, as well as a burst of innovation for users, marketers, and app developers alike.
  • Digital Turbine Media’s Executive Vice President shares the top 6 trends to expect as 5G covers the nation.

Customers and app developers alike have actually been eagerly waiting for the prevalent schedule of 5G. Their wish became a reality in part when the White House revealed the DoD will “give up 100MHz of 3.5 GHz spectrum for industrial use, a process that will augment U.S. 5G networks over the next 2 years.” In 2021, we can expect to see more mobile customers have access to 5G, which, in turn, means app designers can use them cooler and quicker apps, and enjoy a little bit of success at the same time.

Here are 6 patterns you can anticipate to view as 5G covers the nation.

1. Progressive material: Phone and app virtualization

Progressive content, phone and app virtualization, allowed by 5G, will ultimately allow people to use their phones as they constantly wanted they could. Here’s the idea: Rather than load up an app onto a device at one time, progressive content loads bits and bytes as needed. The outcome is an experience that feels more like a desktop than a cellphone (read: lightning quick!). Virtualization, on the other hand, shops apps and data in the cloud, not the gadget. And as is the case with all things cloud, the outcome is a more seamless experience.

2. More powerful UA campaign results

Mobile app developers stand to get a lot with 5G. The ads that provide the most bang for their buck– playable ads, videos, gamification– will load very quick, so users are less likely to click far from them. More than that, 5G will shorten the time it requires to set up an app, reducing the possibility of users deserting it entirely (set up desertion, which can reach 80%, is the bane of the market).

3. Much better monetization opportunities

Successful monetization in the app world is largely driven by time invested inside of an app. The more pages an individual views, the more advertisements they can be revealed. When apps are slow to load and use, people get bored and proceed, taking with them the app developer’s ability to make money. In short: Faster speeds implies more time spent in-app, which translates directly to more income.

4. AR/ER/IoT

As soon as 5G makes mobile phones as quick as broadband, that’s when consumers will start to see all of the enhanced reality, enhanced truth, and IoT they’ve been assured for so long. As TechRadar wrote, “This synergy between AR and 5G will also expand the capacity for remote control drone and robotic operation through improved HUDs (Heads Up Displays) and enhanced haptic feedback. This lofty concept of the so-called ‘Tactile Internet’ is expected to kickstart the 4th industrial transformation.”

5. Greater quality social networks live

Social Network Live has actually conserved a great deal of lives and held a great deal of individuals responsible over the previous few years. The video feeds, stuffed through a 3G or 4G network, are very grainy. 5G will substantially up their quality, and we can most likely expect to see a lot more individuals utilizing it.

6. More apps

The variety of developers and companies creating apps is likely to take off as soon as 5G increases capability and eliminates the latency concerns of 3G and 4G. We’ll see a lots of AR video games and wearables pertain to market. We’ll also see innovations crazes like telemedicine, and a host of teleconferencing apps if 2021 sees another round of pandemic-induced lockdowns.

Combined, these developments will prepare for some quite cool app experiences, along with a burst of innovation for users, marketers, and app designers alike.

Matt Tubergen works as the Executive Vice President of

Digital Turbine Media. More about:

Google Ads turns 20: The most important trends and changes of the past 5 years

Google ads is now 20 years old. At its 15 year milestone, we chronicled AdWords’ evolution into a $60 billion business. We were still talking about Yahoo as a player in search, enhanced campaigns ushered in mobile as a marketing must-do just two years prior and ads-only Google Shopping was three years old.

Fast forward five years and a rebrand later, ad revenue has more than doubled (the ads business generated more than $135 billion last year), Yahoo surrendered search ads to Microsoft, mobile is ubiquitous, free listings are back on Google Shopping — and AI and machine learning have transformed the way Google Ads works and the way advertisers work with it.

Here’s a look at some of the biggest changes in Google Ads over the past five years that point to what’s ahead in the next five years.

Rise of audiences

several years after Facebook and Twitter had launched their first-party targeting products, Google launched Customer Match in the fall of 2015. This marked Google’s leap into audiences beyond standard website retargeting.

It then introduced similar, affinity, in-market and interest audience targeting. This year, it introduced predictive audiences based on purchase or churn probability that are powered by the new Google Analytics 4.

One of the most substantive changes of the past five years occurred in 2017, when Google began allowing Google users account data to be used for YouTube targeting, including demographic and search behavior information from users signed into Google. The new targeting signals helped boost YouTube’s ad revenue, and also opened up the ability to combine signals from Search and YouTube in Google audiences.

Decline of keyword (match types)

The way Google defines close variants of search queries over the past several years has been significant. Google’s evolving use of machine learning to match users’ search queries to the keywords advertisers buy has forced advertisers to rethink everything from campaign and ad group structures to ad copy to keyword management.

Now, the effects of privacy changes and regulations are further complicating keyword management. Last month, Google began limiting the search terms it reports to advertisers. Only queries that are searched by a “significant number of users” are reported. Some advertisers

With the expansion of close variants, advertisers have adopted a negative keyword management approach to keyword optimization. That means search terms reports had become critical tools. Advertisers have reported losing visibility into 20% or more of the queries that drove users to click on their ads.

Related:

Automated campaigns and ads

Based on the results it saw from Universal App campaigns, 2018 ushered in the era of fully-automated ads and campaign types in Google Ads.

“No longer is automation limited to certain aspects of campaign management — such as bidding or dynamic headlines. Now, every facet of a campaign — bidding, creative and targeting — can be automated based on a few inputs from the advertiser,” I wrote after Google introduced automated Smart (for small businesses), Local and Smart Shopping campaigns that year.

The other big change with these campaign types is that they automatically run across multiple Google owned and operated properties. More on that below.

2018 was also the year responsive search ads (RSAs) came on the scene. RSAs use machine learning to predict the best combination of ad titles and descriptions to show a user based on historical data and various signals available at the time of the auction. Advertisers enter several variations of titles and descriptions and hand over the reigns to Google algorithms to assemble the winning combinations. In August, we reported Google was testing making RSAs the default Search ad type.

Related:

Surfaces across Google

While “Surfaces across Google” is an option specific to Google Shopping — opting into Surfaces across Google allows retailers to show their products for free (organically) on Google Images, Google Shopping, Google Lens, and Google Search — it captures a broader theme.

And that is the expansion of surfaces on which Google now shows ads. While there are still pure Search campaigns in Google Ads, nearly every other campaign type now automatically runs ads across multiple channels, as we mentioned earlier, and Google continues to expand where ads can appear on its properties.

Here’s a look at the various campaign types in Google Ads and the channels and surfaces they run across:

  • App campaigns run on the YouTube home feed and in in-stream video inventory in addition to Search, the Google Display Network, YouTube, AdMob and Google Play.
  • Smart campaigns run across Search, Maps and Display.
  • Local campaigns run across Search, YouTube, Display and in additional places on Maps.
  • Discovery campaigns run across the YouTube home feed, Gmail promotions and social tabs and the Discover feed.
  • Smart Shopping campaigns run on Search, Shopping, Display, YouTube, and Gmail. They also take inventory priority over standard Shopping and Display remarketing campaigns.
  • Showcase Shopping ads, the multi-image Shopping ads run on Search Images, YouTube and Discover.
  • Shopping campaigns are eligible to show in Search, Images, YouTube and Discover when opted into the Search Network.
  • Buy on Google/ Google Shopping Actions ads enable users to buy products via Google’s universal checkout surface on Shopping, Google Assistant, Search. Soon their ads will show on Images and YouTube as well.

Online-to-offline

E-commerce has surged this year due to the pandemic, but Google is also well-positioned to dominate the online to offline economy as my colleague Greg Sterling wrote in June. This is the result of more than a decade of groundwork.

Despite some early challenges, Local Inventory Ads have become popular vehicles for retailers to promote their products to nearby searchers, and increasingly, they measure the impact of those ads on store visits and store purchases. This year, Google announced automated bidding optimization for store sales.

In response to changing consumer behavior amid the pandemic, Google has added several features to Local campaigns and Local Inventory ads to emphasize buy online pickup in store (BOPIS) options including curb-side pickup badges.

Expect to see Google continue to invest heavily in online-to-offline capabilities.


About The Author

Ginny Marvin is Third Door Media’s Editor-in-Chief, running the day to day editorial operations across all publications and overseeing paid media coverage. Ginny Marvin writes about paid digital advertising and analytics news and trends for Search Engine Land, Marketing Land and MarTech Today. With more than 15 years of marketing experience, Ginny has held both in-house and agency management positions. She can be found on Twitter as @ginnymarvin.

A Guide For Digital Marketing Strategy

Top Digital Marketing Strategies

There are so many digital marketing strategies, and often it can be overwhelming when you’re trying to choose which one to prioritize. Marketers searching for the supreme digital marketing strategy require having a clear understanding of their company, product, and demographics prior to picking a digital marketing technique that will work for their requirements.

In new research study, we spoke with 200+ international marketing leaders to discover what they thought the future held for digital marketing, and surprisingly enough, digital strategy and planning ranked among the leading four abilities they think about ‘incredibly important’.

Email Marketing

In spite of forecasts of its death in the marketing world, emails are still around and providing a handsome return on investment (ROI) to online marketers.

In a current study carried out by Demand Metric and the Data & Marketing Association (DMA), it was concluded that email marketing had an outstanding ROI of 122%.

That was 4 times higher than the other marketing channels which were examined. Those channels included paid search, direct mail, and social media.

Content Marketing

As a connective string to incoming marketing above, material marketing is a big part of bring in a target market. What’s essential about content marketing is that you require making your material valuable, relevant, and consistent to make it worth the time of those consuming it.

In today’s time, you need to concentrate on producing content that can resolve discomfort points and remain evergreen. Using shortcuts or black hat SEO strategies just to transfer to the top of online search engine won’t work thanks to Google’s all-seeing eye.

So always keep “material is king”, as lots of like to put it. To make material marketing work well, you require focusing on mobile content, native advertising, and influencer marketing, and marketing automation.

SEO

There isn’t anything more vital to digital marketing than SEO, something that might still perplex you in its continuous intricacy. While it holds true Google’s algorithms can still end up being confusing, you can much better understand how it works when you work more with the idea.

It’s constantly better to have a specialist to manage SEO for you if you want to genuinely prosper. While you can learn some essentials, you’ll want someone who’s worked in it a while to totally help you understand the very best strategies.

One current technique involves new HTTPS requirements already impacting SEO outcomes. If you’re utilized to using HTTP pages, Google now recommends you to switch to a HTTPS format. The reasoning behind this is lots of contact types utilizing HTTP pages aren’t deemed safe and secure enough.

Usage Material for Lead Generation

There are lots of strategies of creating leads, but one tried and checked technique is by providing important written content and distributing it appropriately. When you connect your blogs and short articles to a specific deal through a landing page, you boost your conversion capacity. According to Entrepreneur, bloggers are 13 times more likely to have a positive ROI, and business have the very same kind of results.

Social Network Marketing

Social network has ended up being an effective marketing tool these days.

According to a Social Media Examiner’s report, 90% of online marketers validated that social media is necessary to their businesses. And 89% of marketers indicated that their social networks efforts have produced increased direct exposure for their companies.

How to create a consistent omnichannel customer experience

30-second summary:

  • Customers today have high requirements when it comes to their online shopping experiences, so you can’t pay for to be lax with your operation.
  • Prior to you do anything else, you ought to produce some thorough brand name guidelines to steer your business’s conversational and creative output.
  • Reacting rapidly is paramount because it shows that you’re dedicated to exceptional service and are focusing on what people are saying.
  • By closely tracking when people reach out to you and keeping pertinent details, you can provide a personalized– and outstanding– assistance service.

Considering that the increase of ecommerce to a position of prominence, an omnichannel customer experience has steadily become a stronger point of focus for enthusiastic brands, and it’s simple to understand why. Prices alone aren’t enough to sway consumers or service users when the revenue margins are so narrow, and periodic appealing deals won’t earn the commitment that returns the most worth.

At the very same time, the intricacy involved in the process of designing good customer experiences has skyrocketed. Not just have expectations increased immensely due to the standard-setting efficiency of the most significant brands in the world, however there’s also even more competitors out there than ever before– and it’s so much more difficult to stand apart.

Significantly, it isn’t sufficient to supply great consumer experiences through just one channel. However you reach our customers, you need to constantly provide the same level of polish. This is where the omnichannel technique can be found in, pushing you to focus on what you do (being extremely actionable with your inbound marketing) instead of where you do it.

Here are some tips to develop a consistent omnichannel consumer experience:

1. Style and adhere to clear brand name standards

A fantastic omnichannel customer experience most importantly would require you to have a set of brand name guidelines in location to make sure that every location of your customer care is on the same page. This ends up being more of a problem the more individuals you have operating in your service. Knowing that the preferred company tone is one of genial informality, for example, will avoid an errant assistance assistant from being overly vital.

And if you believe that isn’t particularly essential, consider how quickly negative comments can spread through social networks. If someone has a terrific experience handling your assistance team through Facebook however sees some scathing remarks about you on Twitter, it will (at the minimum) tilt them towards questioning you. Depending on the identity and impact of the plaintiff, it may even completely invert their opinion of you.

It’s a great idea to put a system in place to keep an eye on feedback from all pertinent avenues since otherwise, you ‘d require to manually trawl channels to see if anyone mentions you. There are plenty of tools on the market capable of doing this, so I recommend taking a look at HubSpot’s roundup to see which one may work best for you.

2. Invest in being very responsive

Clients can afford to be demanding at this moment. Even if there weren’t numerous organizations making comparable products and services readily available that any given one (with unusual exceptions) could be changed with a replacement at any time, we’re inarguably residing in a time of consumer power. Anyone who’s prepared to openly call out a company can cause it no end of trouble.

If you wish to regularly keep consumers delighted across all possible platforms, you don’t simply require to stabilize your responsiveness: you need to stabilize impressive responsiveness. When an issue pertains to your attention, you must act to address it exceptionally quickly. This will reveal that you’re actually purchased making things better.

This will partially come down to executing smart automation, especially through utilizing chatbots, though be mindful of the requirement to abide by the aforementioned brand guidelines. Do not simply slot in a generic style: supplied you’ve picked a decent platform, you should have the ability to personalize your website’s live chat with your brand name colors, your favored design elements, and– most notably– content that suits your tone. Extend this philosophy to your social chatbots (anything you deploy via Facebook Messenger, for instance).

You need support assistants that can quickly manage any intricate concerns that emerge. Do not stress excessive about right away meeting demand, however, because you can’t realistically have sufficient individuals to attend to issues in real-time throughout crunch periods. Rather, make sure that every concern gets recognized (most likely by a chatbot) which you have a guaranteed action window that’s plainly indicated so everyone understands where they stand.

3. Usage platform-independent issue and loyalty tracking

Imagine that one client connects to you through Twitter due to the fact that they need some help with selecting a product. You supply that help, then they go on their method. Later on, you receive an e-mail from that customer seeking further information, however the assistant accountable for helping wind up sending them the very same details they were previously provided.

Due to the fact that it can easily make the client feel unmemorable and unimportant, this is an uncomfortable circumstance. Is it your fault? Well, not precisely, however it depends upon the specific situations. Did the individual responsible for the e-mail reply ask the client if they ‘d made a prior inquiry? Did the social media assistant take down their details? You should not expect your customers to track these things. Where it’s practical, they’ll neglect previous questions if they perhaps can.

What you require, then, is a combination of 2 components: a platform-independent cloud-based CRM tool (CRM meaning consumer relationship management: here’s a fine example) and a standard operating procedure for making sure that every notable client interaction is properly logged.

Apptivo example - Creating a great ominchannel customer experience

Source: Apptivo Whenever an assistance assistant speaks with an existing or prospective customer, they need to keep in mind things like their social media handles and their e-mail address. When subsequent interactions develop, then, you can impress that customer by already understanding what they’re searching for and what they may need support with.

Closing note

We’ve just looked at a few ideas here, however they’re especially crucial ones when you’re attempting to consistently outshine your competitors when it pertains to omnichannel consumer experience. Presuming your website itself is well optimized (running rapidly, being responsive even on mobile connections, and scaling with demand), a renewed focus on brand identity and thorough live support could be simply what you require.

How changes in logistics and the supply chain will impact customer experience

“One thing people don’t really talk about or understand is that logistics is a huge part of the customer experience, which is a huge part of today’s marketing. Everything in marketing today is so much more 1:1, so much more experiential, people want that Amazon-like feel no matter where they go.”

The words not of a marketer, but of a thought leader in the logistics and supply chain space, Erik Mumford, co-founder of REFASHIOND OS, the systems design, research, and strategy consulting arm of REFASHIOND Ventures, focused on supply chain innovation. In a wide-ranging conversation with Mumford, supplemented by written contributions from his co-founders Lisa Morales and Brian Laung Aoaeh, we sought to understand the global logistical changes acclerated by COVID-19 and what they mean for brands.

In-your-face macro-trends

“There are obviously macro-trends which are in your face like reshoring, near-shoring, and reducing reliance on China,” said Mumford (“reshoring” being the practice of bringing a supply chain entirely home). “Our whole business has been around localization – what we mean by that is localized manufacturing, geographical demand-driven hubs of manufacturing, and this was something that we were trying to orchestrate and get traction around before COVID hit.” In the face of the pandemic, Mumford’s business pivoted to supporting things like the PPE supply chain, as well as “helping solve for some of the extra layers of fraud, risk and profiteering” which the pandemic stirred up.

As with changes in consumer habits, digital transformation, and so many other things relevant to brands today, COVID was not an instigator, but a massive accelerator of pre-existing trends. “Prior to COVID, it was much more around sustainability, about being green, more ethical sourcing, slave labor, transparency – those kinds of things,” said Mumford. “Now it’s not just those, but a more rapid shift than we had expected away from your traditional global models, and getting more into made-in-U.S.A., and near-shoring, and more resiliency in our supply chains.”

“In an environment with rapidly plummeting revenues, squeezing costs and inefficiencies out of the supply chain is no longer a luxury, it is very obviously a critical necessity,” said Aoaeh.

Will the supply chain retreat from China?

One thing COVID has highlighted is the global supply chain’s precarious reliance on remote and potentially hostile sources. China is seen by some as exemplary in this respect, but the solution — if one is needed — is unlikely to be simple.

“This is a complex issue,” said Aoaeh. “Yes, China has been a lynch-pin in the global manufacturing supply chain. Due to the trade wars between China and the U.S. many companies are rethinking their manufacturing operations in China, but it is not so easy to just uproot and relocate to a new locale, because there’s a lot of tangible and intangible infrastructure that accompanies the kinds of manufacturing capabilities that China has developed.” For the foreseeable future, then, China will remain an overwhelmingly significant part of global manufacturing, Aeoh explained, even though Vietnam, India, Mexico and other emerging markets are potential competitors.

Mumford points to some specific problems. The U.S. pharmaceutical supply chain is overwhelmingly rooted in Chinese manufacturing. Something like 90% of our antibiotics, vitamins and other core pharmaceutical products come from China, he explained. “That creates an incredible national-security issue, especially when we have a crisis like COVID.” He also cites China’s ability, because of its supply chain centrality, to compel countries with high food insecurity like Argentina to continue exporting food to China. “We’ll bring certain things home that make sense,” he said. He also expected brands to be considering alternatives to China which are somewhat more politically aligned with the U.S.A.: India, for example.

A hybrid of local and global

“It all won’t come home,” he agreed. “There will be an emergence of hybridized models of demand-driven, localized supply chains, and your traditional global model, that will operate in parallel to each other.” Changes in the traditional model have obvious downsides, like increasing poverty in communities reliant on supply chain participation. “On the flip side, there’s how many jobs we’re going to create here, and how much we’ll increase our national security and resilience’ and eliminate waste and pollution and impact on the planet.”

The traditional global supply chain has its historic roots in cheaper labor, a higher profit margin, and the need to satisfy “an insatiable consumer demand in America,” he said, as well as the perception that there was merit in being a multi-national corporation. “We’re going to see more of a normalization around demand and supply. I think there will be some harmonization of the local versus global model,” said Mumford, although “that greed component will still be in there.”

The impact on brands as the holidays approach

In a recent interview with MarTech Today, Adobe’s Taylor Schreiner noted the trend among retailers to extend the holiday shopping season, saying “It’s not just to acquire market share, but to manage timing and expectations of delivery when supply chains are so constrained.” Mumford underlined just how big a concern this might be.

“You need to have transparency, and a handle on everything from start to finish, not just on your digital touchpoints. People want to know where their product is, when it’s going to land, where it’s sourced from, all of these things – and these things are coming more to the forefront.” Big brands are taking unprecedented steps, said Mumford. “Companies like Walmart and Amazon are buying up extra cargo planes to accommodate an unknown demand curve that’s coming up this holiday season. They’re locking in these extra planes, taking them off the market, and we now see this scrambling to re-purpose passenger planes into cargo planes, because they’re under-utilized on the passenger side.”

As for alternatives to air freight, “We’re going to see at least a few months of real volatility and a push to ocean freight – we’re going to see cost volatility in ocean freight like we haven’t seen in decades.”

From supply chain to demand chain

Another critical change which has accompanied the pandemic is a switch to demand-driven production; a demand chain rather than the traditional supply chain. Mumford was shopping for chinos recently. “Looking at a couple of sites, and for first the first time ever that I can remember, I’m seeing sites where you are pre-ordering clothing, like before it’s actually made. That is a direct result of COVID.” The same can be seen with food sites which give you a future date that your order will be sent: clearly the food is being made to order.

This is part of a rapid shift to smaller batch manufacturing and away from over-production: “Big brands like H&M, that over-produced last year something like $4.5 billion worth of stock,” said Mumford. “That’s a ton of waste. Demand planning for retailers has now been completely blown up, and we’re now going to see that reflected in logistics.”

Morales offered an example from the fashion space. “Gerber Technology has already deployed a demand chain micro-factory within 1200 sq feet in their NYC Hudson Yards office. This micro-factory allows a shopper to get measured, design their own garment, design their own textile/pattern, have it printed, dried, cut, and sewn within as little as an hour. The ability to only sell exactly what your consumer wants to buy with custom fit far outweighs the trade off of infinite optionality tied to deadstock in the billions of dollars.”

Looking for silver linings

Could more sustainable and ethical supply chains emerge from this global upheaval? “Yes,” said Aoaeh, “But the public has to demand that companies pursue this as a core strategic priority, and the public also has to push politicians to institute laws that make this an imperative for companies.”

Morales agreed: “Globalization has led to supply chains consisting of billions of nodes with layers upon layers of opacity. The global PPE shortages have highlighted the imperative to not only know your suppliers, but have true, immutable ledgers validating their production standards, materials, lab testing, and lot certifications. The lack of transparency has led to billions, if not trillions of dollars being paid out for unusable or fraudulent products.” Localized supply chains are inherently more sustainable, she said.

Morales pointed to the fashion industry as an example of a heightened ethical awareness. “Innovation in fashion supply chains is helping to eliminate the global use of slave labor by creating more equitable, transparent local infrastructure in collaboration with local communities, rather than being exploitative. It is far easier to hide behind the opacity and layers of globalized systems, but becomes much harder to do so within arms’ reach.”

The pandemic is also prompting countries to bring supply chains home where possible, and this will likely have some positive effects. “Due to COVID-19, many countries are reshoring their critical supplies, like PPE, pharma, and even agricultural products,” said Morales. “Reshoring not only provides increased national security, local job creation, and economic stability; but innovation has created efficiencies that have never been possible before. Over the next five years, we will see emerging localization infrastructure scale, accelerated by the pandemic, enabling far more sustainable, circular, and transparent options than are possible via globalization.”

Brands need to embrace change, said Morales. “It’s always shocking to me how legacy companies preach innovation, but keep investing in pain avoidance or incremental change. The companies that understand innovation is a mandate, rather than a nice to-have, will still exist in 10 to 15 years. The innovators have doubled down on their acceleration due to COVID19. It’s time for paradigm shifts and now it is cheaper and faster to build them than to try to retrofit globalized systems.”

“We’ve seen the greatest wealth transfer from small business to the Amazons and Walmarts in such a short period of time that we have ever seen,” said Mumford. “COVID is gutting our small and medium-sized businesses, and it’s shifting that wealth to brands that were already in a good position from a balance-sheet perspective. Smaller retailers, up-and-coming brands, niche and boutique brands, are really suffering. The ones that are going to survive are the ones that were already ahead of the curve in terms of digital transformation — putting it into marketing terms.”

This story first appeared on MarTech Today.


About The Author

Kim Davis is the Editorial Director of MarTech Today. Born in London, but a New Yorker for over two decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space. He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020. Prior to working in tech journalism, Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.