Tag Archives: online

Best Practice No. 8: Provide Ongoing, Online Training

computericonsc1506_x_th_cHaving a training program accessible online. On-site co-op training is great, but what is the back-up plan for new hires after that, or refreshers when co-op numbers are sagging? An online training program that people can take on demand can be helpful. Gatehouse’s Sigler said his organization creates these for their sales people, and he notes that the more localized the training the better. He also notes that Recas is a great resource for online training tools as well.

iconThis article was written by Charles Laughlin of the Local Search Association in Breaking Through the Co-op Clutter: Best Practices for Improved Co-op Advertising Sales. For more information on how Recas can help expand your brand advertising potential, please visit www.recas.com.

Don’t Forget About the Power of a Working Mom

Working moms' top priority is spending time with family

Moms typically hold a special importance for families and working moms are heavily invested in their family’s finances. According to Nielsen, 40% of women have children under the age of 18, and also have full-time jobs. They are 40% more likely to have an average annual household income of $100,000 or more, making them an important demographic for businesses to target. Working moms often spend on a consistent basis, whether to support their family or just for a bit of relaxing “me time.” According to the report, “working moms are more engaged with their household finances than all other moms and it makes for valuable decision making about where the family dollars go.”

Working moms are looking for options that make their life easier. Having your business online will help with this. Working moms are 10% more likely to use online banking. They are also 13% more likely than others to spend $2,500 or more on internet purchases. It can’t be stressed enough, that if your business isn’t online or mobile friendly, it needs to be!

About 2 in 5 working moms check local news online, watch morning news, and/or watch evening news, while 46% of them read the local news section of the newspaper. This shows that they are concerned with local news, so placing advertisements in local newspapers, news sites, or TV news stations are great media channels to start with.

Moms need time away from their kids to unwind and relax a bit. Therefore, they are more likely to have seen live theatre performances, make travel arrangements online, buy tickets to cultural events, or even gone skiing or snowboarding in the past year. Many of them are active and even like sports. Heck, their kids are probably playing or have played sports in the past! Nielsen says that “working moms are much more likely than all other moms to be sports fans.” Advertising with local sports just might appeal to the working mom audience. Try focusing on ads for sports equipment, apparel, or gyms and fitness centers. Working moms are likely to buy athletic clothes and shoes. But just remember to incorporate your advertising in email newsletters with special deals and coupons. They are 16% more likely to use coupons for products or services other than food once a week, which means that weekly offers may bring them to your business more frequently.

Hopefully these statistics show just how important the “working mom” market actually is. Don’t forget about the power of a working mom!

1/24/14 – 5 Social Media Tips

Social media tips - fill everything out!

1. Share photos of your workplace

Sharing photos of your employees, building and product(s) helps build trust and puts a human touch on your brand.

2. Completely fill out “about” information

Be sure to include your business’s website, phone number, address and business hours. Fill out all available fields with relevant information. This helps with SEO by establishing your page as a real business.

3. Make use of image space

Many social media platforms have banner space towards the top. Twitter allows for a custom background. Make full use of this valuable space to include more information about your business, such as your website and other social media platforms you are on. Keep banners engaging and relevant, and swap them out occasionally to keep things interesting.

4. Know the dimensions

Learning more about the images and space you’re working with will help you know how to make the most of the space. Use resources like this comprehensive guide and infographic to see the dimensions for several top social media sites.

5. Compose messages professionally

Don’t turn 2 txt speak. Even on platforms like Twitter with minimal characters, maintain a professional appearance by using proper grammar and spelling. Resorting to “text speak” tends to be a huge turn off for your followers, and reflects badly on your brand.

How to Market on Pinterest

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Many online stores have turned their product categories into boards on Pinterest, and some are generating up to 10% of their sales from user clicks! So how can you start marketing on Pinterest?

When your business first creates its Pinterest account, make sure the account is set up properly and is branded with your company’s logo. You will need to create boards that are specific to your customers and contain content designed for your target market. These boards should be linked to other social media outlets that you have, such as Facebook and Twitter. This way your account isn’t limited to only Pinterest followers.

The strategy for Pinterest is to Pin, Repin and Follow. You do not want to just post your images, you should also share others’ content. They may even share your content in return! Just like other social media accounts, you need to interact with your audiences. This includes commenting on images and boards, liking other pins, and tagging other user by name. For example, try to comment back with a “Thanks for sharing our pin!” if you get repinned.

Another concept to remember is to remain connected and up-to-date. Google and other search engines notice newer content and content that has created a lot of social traffic. This is why it is important to pin often from many different sources, including your own website. Any pin you create should have a link back to your business’s website and other social media profiles. This is how to create an online network! However, be careful not to promote yourself too much. You do not want to be the site that only talks about themselves. Pinterest can drive a lot of traffic to your website if you do this correctly and often using current content.

One idea that is starting to take off on Pinterest is creating a board that specifically talks about the company. Instead of Facebook where one has an “About Me” section, this board serves as a substitute way for people to learn what your business is all about and then explore further from there. Many companies are also beginning to offer exclusive Pinterest promotions. By creating pins that give special promotions for Pinterest followers, your Pinterest audience gets to feel as if they are special and unique from customers on your other sites.

When you begin to feel like you are learning the ins-and-outs of Pinterest, or at least have a decent amount of followers on your boards, you can have larger promotions. Businesses are starting to create Pinterest contests, which encourages their followers to take certain actions, like pinning links and images from the business’s site that inspire, motivate, move, or entertain them. Not only does this encourage responses from a company’s audience, but it also spreads the word among followers of the people who do participate in the contests.

Also, B2B’s can create boards specifically for one client. It’s almost like organizing your clients online! It also helps to promote the client as an added bonus.

Of course, the last thing to remember is to monitor and measure your Pinterest traffic to find out what works and what doesn’t. Check what types of pins are being liked or repinned, and who follows what. Remember to also check on your competition to find out new ways that may work for you.

This Season’s Advertising Design Trends

The latest trend seen among retailers this year is the idea of “leaking” Black Friday ads even earlier. While some stores are not admitting they do, many large retailers are deciding to advertise their Black Friday prices well before to get shoppers excited and help draw them in before, during, and after the biggest shopping day of the year.

A considerable amount of advertising is now digital or online. The banner and displays ads are now more beautiful, interactive, creative, and more technologically complex than ever before. Many ads incorporate videos and games into the ad itself. Likewise, many videos and games incorporate ads as well. YouTube videos and online/mobile games like Angry Birds often have ads displayed somewhere on the screen. Many digital gaming companies are also customizing games to link them with a promoted product. For example, Lady Gaga had teamed up with marketers to create a Lady Gaga-themed farm on the game Farmville when her Born This Way album was in the midst of being released.

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Email marketing, while not as popular as banner and display ads, is also very prevalent. It allows advertisers to reach a specific market: those who have already expressed interest either by past purchases or by signing up to be on a mailing list. Many marketers are turning these emails into ones optimized for mobile devices, to correlate with the fact that more and more consumers are using their phones to check emails. And as a simple tip: less words, more pictures.

Everything is becoming more personalized to the consumer, and it’s getting easier and easier as advertisers utilize their online resources. People can expect to see more ads displayed everywhere possible, like in the corners of their mobile screens. There will be an increased amount of interactive ads and native advertising seen across digital media. A trend predicted to grow this holiday season is the idea of using humor and sarcasm to capture the attention of consumers. By incorporating advertisements into games, applications, and videos, mobile devices will be at the forefront of the advertising design trends this year.

Photo courtesy of Creative Outlet by MultiAd.

What is Native Advertising

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Native advertising is a method of online advertising using ads that look and feel like natural (non-advertising) content. The advertiser provides content in the context of the user’s experience with videos, images, articles, music and other media.

Advertisers are utilizing native advertising because traditional display ads are more easily ignored. The technique has unlimited possibilities: trends on Twitter, promoted tweets, sponsored stories on Facebook, video ads on YouTube, etc. The advertiser’s intent is to make the paid advertising feel less intrusive in order to increase the probability that users will click on it, and perhaps even share it.

Everyday example: Facebook’s sponsored stories look no different than other posts in your feed, and they appear right alongside your normal updates. These sponsored stories can be shared, liked, and commented on.

Native advertising must engage the audience. In fact, the future of native advertising is completely interactive. If the purpose is to distract consumers who might otherwise disregard standard online ads, there’s no better way to engage the website visitors than by having them participate in an interactive component.

It is important for native ads to fit seamlessly in their surrounding context, and to have the ability to be shared among multiple outlets. If an ad seems boring, annoying, or misleading, it is very unlikely to be effective.

Photo courtesy of Creative Outlet by MultiAd.