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5 Things To Learn About Sales, Stress, and Success From The Marketing Experts

client-communication
In this data-rich world of technology, many people neglect the immense importance of communication. They get so preoccupied with daily duties and various processes that they don’t get to spend enough time on meaningful communication with a client. Communication plays a significant role in almost every aspect of our lives, especially in business. While it can increase client satisfaction and improve our opportunity for success, it can also alienate the clients and ultimately break the business.

Luckily, successful communication doesn’t cost a thing. If you want to improve your client communication and build and maintain sound collaboration, you need to invest your time and energy into it. Not only will it pay off but it will also help you draw new invaluable clients. Here are a few tips how to make client communication more productive.

Define Your Services

Before starting any collaboration with a potential customer, you need to state what kind of services you are offering individually. Instead of trying to impress your clients with a full range of services you do, you should focus on one or few you are proficient at. This way you are wasting your time and energy on multitasking while aiming to meet all your client’s needs and preferences which can severely damage your business and career. If you clearly explain what things you are specialized in, the client will value your work more and will undoubtedly be more interested in your services.

Choose the Right Method of Communication

This modern era of ubiquitous energy-efficient technologies gives us an incredible opportunity to communicate by using so many means of communication that we sometimes cannot decide which one to choose. When it comes to business, choosing the right method of communication is crucial as it will determine how successful your future client collaboration will be. While some clients prefer face-to-face communication, others are more mail persons. Probably the best option is to directly talk to the client and ask them which one they prefer. It will improve the communication flow and increase overall productivity.

Keep Everyone Involved in the Project

Building an excellent communication with a client is not an easy ride. Sometimes it is best to include your client in all the processes and stages of project development from the start and avoid any misunderstandings, payment delays or even disagreements. There is a wide selection of agile project management tools for creatives that allow your clients to follow everything on the project ones they get access. They can see what you are working on, provide feedback and upload content if necessary. This will help you break any walls and build honesty and trust between you and your clients.

Client-communication

Image Source: http://imgur.com/a/qbwoo

Maintain Friendly Communication

It’s not a brainer that poor communication can quickly break your business. However, sometimes lack of proper communication is not the issue. Sometimes the communication with a client may suffer due to the inconsistency of given data or just inadequate language. Keep in mind that clients do not have to be experts in your field of expertise and they do necessarily possess the knowledge and the skills you and your team are proficient at. Translating web-speak into language that will be easily understandable and more meaningful to you client is imperative in building a successful relationship with your client.

Keep Your Clients Frequently Updated

According to research, the reason why many clients decide to leave the project earlier is that they are unsatisfied with information delivery. Make sure you communicate, communicate more and over-communicate. Keeping your customer regularly updated about all the phases of the project development especially in case if some technical issues arise, is invaluable for the client. Get ready to get down to the nitty-gritty with clients. They will appreciate the effort you are making to keep them informed, and they will not have reason to worry.


rachelRachel is currently working as the vice president of communications at Active Collab. After finishing her master’s degree in Communications she pursued a career in the digital industry, most notably in marketing and public relations.

 

5 Things To Learn About Sales, Stress, and Success From The Marketing Experts

5-things-learn-success

“Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.” – Albert Schweitzer

Whether you are aware of this or not, there are two types of people in the marketing industry: those who believe they can deliver every strategy efficiently and successfully and those who believe things can just happen to them. Each marketer has their fair share of experiences in the marketing world. However, their action and approach to a precise moment determine what type of marketer they are.

Admittedly, marketers also feel overwhelmed especially when there are so many things to consider – not to mention the deadlines you need to catch up. Marketers know so well, especially when you are working in a competitive business such as the digital marketing agency in the Philippines that it is not easy to be productive every single time. Sometimes, sales aren’t just going up, and because you need to think it over and over again as to why sales are stagnant; you would apparently exert more effort which causes you to feel stressed-out. If you are one of those marketers who is struggling with their productivity at work, then here are some things you need to know and learn about sales, stress and success and how marketing experts beat them all.

  1. Most people who purport to be influential aren’t – and people with tons of social media followers probably can’t help your sales.
    Never get tricked by the number of followers they have on social media, or how they claim to be influential they are. Although they may have some advantages, that does not mean they can already convert their followers into sales. When you’re a marketer, you should know how to determine people who are potential enough to engage on your site. It does not matter if you do not have hundreds or thousands of followers on social media, for as long as you know they are your target market and potential clients, then it should be good enough to give it a try.
  2. Anxiety and worry are rooted in fear and are wasted energy; they never contribute to any positive outcomes.
    The moment you decide to be a part of the marketing industry, you should already know that it is a risk to take. Sometimes, you need to sacrifice your time and exert the second effort just to come up with an effective strategy. With this, marketers tend to develop anxiety and worry about the things; they needed to do just to beat the deadlines. However, you have to know that worrying too much is not good especially for marketers. You need to be healthy emotionally and physically to achieve the goals you have for the business.
  3. Meditation does wonder for eliminating, preventing and managing stress and anxiety.
    Let’s face it; we usually experience stress – it is inevitable especially when you are working in a competitive company. But just because we often experience it, that does not mean you do not do something to prevent it from happening. Of course, there are also ways for you to avoid such. Meditation is one thing you can do to lessen the burden you are feeling. Whether you realize it or not; meditation has a lot of benefits; be it mentally and physically. With this, it will help you loosen up and start a new and fresh mind.
  4. The more you hustle, the luckier you get.
    This is also one thing marketers should consider. The outcome of your success would depend on how you do things the right way, or how you plan out your strategy to make it as efficient as possible. The more you strive for, the better, of course, you can also expect better results. One thing is for sure; you do not want to lose to your competitors just because you are slacking off of your work.
  5. Social media does not drive sales.
    Dor some businesses, social media might be a great way to drive sales. However, this may not always be the case for the other businesses. Social media is a broad platform where anyone can just skip your website. But if you are aiming for higher sales, then make sure you create a community where your target audience and potential clients can converse properly. It is in this way where you will be able to ensure you can drive sales out of them.

Perhaps, driving out more sales and beating up stress may be a challenge especially when you have so many things in mind. But with these tips mentioned above, it would guide and help you come up with better and strategic ideas for your business.


janiceJanice Jaramillo is a twenty-something who loves to write and read about technology and marketing. She is currently associated with the digital marketing agency in the Philippines. She also likes to travel around the world to meet new people.

20 Secrets Why Infographics Go Viral

20-secrets-infographics

Content marketing has many aspects to it, but the premise is very simple. You create content and then promote it. However, anyone who reads this blog knows that it’s not that easy. You have to create the right content that will get your shares and likes and then you have to outreach to people that will put your content on display to the world. Even then it can be hard.

However, infographics seem to play by a different set of rules. There is one thing I know about content marketing, and that is infographics get shared. They just work.

Then I started thinking about why infographics go viral. Why do they get more shares? Why do people like them?

So I did some research, and I complied 20 ‘secrets’ why infographics go viral, and what better way to compile these 20 hidden secrets than in an infographic.

Take a look, and hopefully, you will realize the power of infographics.

  1. A viral infographic has a defined purpose and message behind it.
    A study conducted by the Journal of Physical Activity and Health noted that the viral infographic transmitted a message and engaged the viewer using a three-step process: raising awareness, changing and challenging attitudes, finalized with a call to action’ to change behaviors.
  2. The display size of the infographic matters.
    Social Media Today conducted an analysis of 1000 infographics that were the most shared in some different business industries and found that the most popular size was an average of 3683 high and 803 pixels wide. This is an average size, so a rule of thumb you can apply is to use these pixels sizes and add or subtract 15 percent to maximize your viral potential.
  3. Viral Infographics are all in mind.
    There is clear scientific evidence, as stated in a Thomson and Reuters blog, that 30 percent of the brain is used to process visual data, contrasted with 3 percent for sensory information. An attention-grabbing infographic with the potential to go viral needs to use visuals that clearly explain the content with a minimal use of text. If the graphical information is confusing, it will lose the viewer.
  4. Being easy to understand is an essential feature of a viral infographic.
    There are many ways to communicate information, but what makes an infographic shareable is the fact it can convey its message at a glance. According to Thomson and Reuters, there are six characteristics to an attention-grabbing infographic, but when you consider the purpose of an infographic is to present the information quickly, so viewers need to see a clearly defined message.
  5. Make the connections between your infographic images and your brand message as clear and straightforward as possible.
    Neomam cites scientific data that says it only 150 milliseconds for an image to be processed in our brains, and another 100 milliseconds to attach a meaning to that image. This means that it is critical for your infographic to communicate information visually in a way where the viewer makes an almost instant connection with the symbol. The less the viewer has to think, the higher the likelihood of it going viral.
  6. Focus on color first, and then the text.
    According to NeoMam, someone who encounters an infographic is 80 percent more likely to engage the image visually. But more importantly, stopping to engage the color image makes the viewer more likely to read the text. Therefore, the color attracts, and the text informs. The danger here is that too much emphasis will be placed on the color and the underlying message in the text will be lost to the viewer.
  7. Create a special color scheme.
    Social Media Today took a close look at color schemes and found that almost 4 of 10 infographics that went viral had either a triadic color scheme or a monochromatic color scheme, while the least likely color scheme to go viral was tetradic. The color scheme needs to emphasize the critical points of the infographic.
  8. Viral Infographics take advantage of a fundamental cognitive process.
    Because our brains are wired to focus initially on visual stimuli, people can recall 80 percent of what they see, according to NeoMam’s infographic. Your infographic does not have a chance of going viral if it is not something people will be able to remember. The lesson here is to be creatively simple and make it easy for the viewer to remember.
  9. Sharing is fun.
    This may be the most obvious and also the most overlooked characteristic of a viral infographic. NeoMam puts this fact at the end of their website infographic, not because it requires a lot of explanation but for exactly the opposite reason. How much can you talk about making something fun? When it comes to a viral infographic, this can be the deal breaker.
  10. The Word Count needs to be carefully watched.
    An analysis by Social Media Today showed viral infographics had an average of 398 words, and no viral infographic has more than 502. Another rule of thumb you can apply is to keep your infographic text right around 400 words. Many marketers believe “less is more, ” but these statistics clearly show that people expect an infographic to convey a minimum amount of information to be useful – and shareable.
  11. The best viral infographics know their target audience extremely well.
    The primary characteristic of any social media marketing campaign is defining your target audience. An infographic needs to be very precise in its definition because the information in the infographic will only be relevant to a particular group of people according to Digital Marketing magazine. They, in turn, will share it with others who know the content is relevant to the other person.
  12. Choose your marketing channels carefully.
    Experienced social media marketers know that choosing the right channels is key to success. Social Media Today discovered in an analysis of 1000 infographics that on Facebook you would have a better chance of going viral if the industry is Health, while if your channel is Twitter you will have a better chance with – Social Media. It is possible you can commit an infographic to a single social media channel and watch it go viral. Only your marketing data and analysis can show you what will work for your particular situation.
  13. Infographic content needs to be both compelling and unique.
    One of the trademarks of a quality infographic, according to Digital Marketing, is that it has compelling content. This is only the first step, however. Being unique is also a critical part of viral success because there is little need to share information that can be easily found on 100 other websites or media channels.
  14. Be sure to contain backlinks in your infographic.
    While content is important, infographics that are out on social media should always have a backlink according to Digital Magazine, either to your landing page or home page There are two reasons for this. First, it increases brand awareness, and second, it opens the door for visitors to see other infographics available on your site. While backlinks can increase traffic, the goal here is to have the visitors browse your website and see your remarkable infographics.
  15. Choose your title keywords carefully.
    Many people do not associate keywords and infographic title as a sufficient attention grabbing marketing technique because they are often so focused on the content itself. Digital Marketing magazine makes the case that doing so makes your infographic better, increasing your chances for a viral hit. Organic searches have a better chance of connecting to your infographic if it is easily found through targeted keywords in your title.
  16. Use infographics to increase the number of your followers and subscribers.
    Digital Marketing sees this as a clear step towards going viral. The more people you have who you stay in regular contact with through email or mailing lists, the more people will know about your latest infographic. Remember that information in today’s world has a very short active life, which is why everything viral does not last very long in the Internet world.
  17. Color Me Blue
    In the Social Media Today report, blue was by far the number one color of choice, regardless of the industry. This included the areas of Health, Business, Entertainment, and the entire range of viral infographics. Red was second, except for the Health industry where it placed third. Blue is considered to be a stress-reducing, relaxing color while red communicates excitement. Use the color combination to your psychological advantage.
  18. Use the embed feature to allow others to embed your infographic into their blog or website.
    Allowing your infographic to be embedded in another businesses’ website or on a blog increases its exposure and increases its visibility, according to Digital Marketing magazine. The progressions are simple: the more people who see it, the more people who will share it, and the more people who share it increase the possibility of it becoming viral.
  19. Do not limit your infographic “mentality” to online media.
    Digital Marketing correctly points out that an efficient multi-channel marketing campaign extends beyond the online presence of your company. Though the concept of viral is usually associated with the Internet, there are ad campaigns that make the jump to print and other forms of media. A quality infographic looks just as good, or maybe even better, in print than in a digital environment.
  20. One secret that may still be a secret is that there are still hidden realities behind viral infographics.
    The fundamental Social Media Today analysis that has been used concluded that one of the least popular industries for infographics is Finance. That seems more than a bit odd, but it is borne out by the statistics. Likewise, it states one of the most popular is the Entertainment industry. Numbers don’t lie, but it is possible they can mislead.

20 secrets why Infographics go viral

Conclusion:

So there you have it the secrets finally revealed.
Now it’s your turn to create an infographic that will go viral and make your brand the talk of the town.

Sources:

Digital Marketing

NeoMam Studios

Social Media Today

Thomson Reuters


tahirTahir Miah is an entrepreneur, digital marketer and SEO enthusiast. He is the founder of Serpjump, a Bedford SEO agency.

How to Use Instagram and Snapchat Stories to Build Your Brand

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We’ve long known a single picture is worth a thousand words, but how many pictures does a whole story involve? If you have spent any amount of time on Instagram or Snapchat in the last year or two, you might already know the answer.

Companies of all sizes and statures have long recognized the value of image-rich marketing, using color to evoke emotion, infographics to simplify complex ideas, and shapes to highlight particular qualities and meanings. Brands create and utilize images to mold their persona, sharing their brand story by giving a peek at the people and purpose behind the logo.

And for some, there’s no easier way to showcase those eye-catching elements than on visual-emphatic social outlets like Instagram and Snapchat, the image-based platforms whose entire existence relies on posting optically appealing elements to engage their viewers.

instagram snapchat

But as much power as a single image can yield, a thousand words at a time ceased to suffice when Snapchat’s Stories feature – and later Instagram Stories – rolled out and installed a new era of social storytelling. Pioneering features like ephemeral content has forced marketers to craft stronger, more efficient, more engaging stories within the images they post.

With a 24-hour expiration date stamped on every Story, there’s only one place a Story can survive – in the viewer’s memory, but only if it’s worth remembering.

A Magnified Look at Social Media Storytelling

A Cultural Expectation

Storytelling has existed as long as human language, serving to share experiences and information, and eventually cementing its place as a cultural norm. Some stories we share today, such as fairy tales and urban legends, are ones that have evolved through centuries of retellings and embellishments, changing names, places, and happy endings to fit our purposes. And just as humans did centuries ago, we continue to tell stories to inform, engage, entertain, and inspire, only now those stories do not always come in the form of a book or oral recitation.

Brand storytelling isn’t about cherry-picking stock photos or copying the successes of others. To be effective, every story shared must epitomize the brand identity, rising above competing brands and images to engage, enlighten, and inspire the viewer to either take action or seek more information. These stories serve as a chance for brands to momentarily halt their advertising barrage and give their audience a transparent glimpse into the beating heart of the company.

Brands have become as big a part of our culture as the products they represent, from music to clothing to food to social media and beyond. Some of the most successful brands have integrated themselves so deeply in our society not through their products and services, but via a storytelling strategy that speaks to us on a culturally important level.

The Cash Value of a Brand Story

As transparent and genuine as brand stories need to be, there is no hard and fast rule to deter your story from becoming your Call to Action. You simply need to know how to craft a story that warrants an action.

Consider the following:

  • What do my customers need from me?
  • How can I connect with my customers on an emotional level?
  • What drives my customers to make a buying decision?
  • What honest elements can I add to my story that can help influence a decision?

Let’s look at Coca Cola’s 2014 Share a Coke campaign:

coca-cola

As one of the world’s most iconic brands, the company stayed true to its universal roots by featuring individual names on its bottles and cans, which sent millions of soda drinkers on a scavenger hunt to find the beverage that “belonged” to them. But as obvious as this was a marketing campaign, it was also less obviously a reflection of how people provide the beating heart behind the brand.

In this case, Coca-Cola shared a story about sharing a coke and earned a 2.5% increase in sales from the same 12-week period the previous year. Also, Coca-Cola benefited from an 870% increase in social media traffic, 18 million+ media impressions, and a 7% increase in consumption, among other perks.

A Purpose in Social Media

As digital marketing trends continued to shift to the social sphere, both Snapchat and Instagram rose to the call of an increased need for solid social media storytelling that doesn’t only provide an opportunity for engagement but encourages it. Thus, Stories emerged on each platform to give brands and viewers alike a different, more organized approach to interacting with each other.

Keep in mind, storytelling is not synonymous with story-selling. It’s not just an outlet to promote your good deeds and wild successes to gain positive PR. Storytelling has always been about how we relate to others and the ways we share and understand experiences. Build your social stories around what your users care about, and show them how you understand their needs, likes, and interests.

Truthfully, brands have become so adept at crafting original images and click-worthy content that it often begs the viewer to question its authenticity. But Stories can – and do – change that notion by not featuring your carefully constructed material, but your in-the-moment highlights. And those are the instances that tell the most genuine, unevolved version of your brand story.

A Bird’s Eye View of Snapchat and Instagram

Snapchat

Say good-bye to the self-destructing snap – if you want to. With Stories, users can look at photos as often as they like until the 24-hour timer dings.

Think of it as a well-honed twist on a traditional photo album: users can post photos or videos in Stories, and others can view those posts anytime while they are still live. This gives viewers a play-by-play of what the user has been up to within a day’s span, but without any content taking a deep dive in their rolling newsfeed. Once a post hits the 24-hour mark, it’s gone forever.

snapchat-stories

Posting to Stories throughout a given day creates a unique narrative for the viewer that details what a day in the life looks like for your brand. It also avoids the one-view-only stipulation that formally ruled Snapchat and lets your image’s legacy live a little longer to create a bigger impact. This gives each of your Snapchat Stories a full 24 hours to inspire and engage before time runs out and something new takes its place. If creativity is ever necessary, it’s here and now.

Instagram

The first photo-sharing social platform lifted a page from the Snapchat playbook and implemented their form of Stories.

Similar in form and function to that of Snapchat, Instagram embodies one of the most important elements of telling and sharing stories – the personal aspect. By eliminating public likes and comments to posts shared in Stories, users are encouraged to reach out via private message on Instagram Direct. This gives brands a clear invitation to respond and engage by forging a direct connection with its fans.

instagram-stories

How to Choose The Right One for Your Brand

If you find yourself unable to differentiate between Snapchat and Instagram Stories, you aren’t alone. The resemblance between the two is nothing short of striking:

  • Posts disappear within 24 hours
  • Ability to add doodles, filters, and emojis
  • Similar privacy settings
  • Viewers can initiate one-on-one Conversation
  • Users can post photos and videos
  • Brands use them for similar purposes

Even so, the two can’t be described as identical. Snapchat trumps Instagram with its filters, face mapping, and reverse motion filters, while Instagram beats Snapchat on hashtag functionality within the app and easier navigation through Stories. Also, each app emphasizes Stories in different extremes, with Instagram prioritizing Stories as the top level idea, as opposed to a second rate feature on Snapchat.

Given the massive similarities and scant differences, which one makes the best solution for your brand?

There is no single right answer. If there were, either Instagram or Snapchat would cease to exist. But whether you are considering a transition from one platform to the other, or are making the first leap into a social media strategy, there are a few things you should consider before clicking the Sign-Up button:

  • What platform does the majority of my target audience use? Don’t worry about which platform has the most users – find out which one can put your brand in front of the right users.
  • What kind of results do I get on my current platform? If you are already active on either Instagram or Snapchat and are thinking of jumping ship because you are not currently getting the results you expect, consider tweaking what you are already doing before you completely abandon your efforts.
  • Do I have the resources and necessity to manage a presence on both Instagram and Snapchat? Some brands can sacrifice the money and manpower to manage multiple social media accounts. But even if you do have the time, funds, and people to manage both platforms, make sure the results warrant the extra resources you’re forking out.
  • Which platform does my competition use? Copying the competition does not always give you the same results as your competitors, but it could be a good indication that they have found their target audience on their current social channel, which means you can, too.

Once you make your choice, be consistent in sharing your stories by keeping your result in focus. Remember, storytelling is about understanding and connecting with your audience, so quality – not quantity – should win every time. Now that’s a story with a happy ending.


benBen Shepardson has been creating and managing websites and web content since the early aughts. From the early wild days of SEO to today’s demand for fully-researched content that users crave, he’s dealt with it all. His latest project is NoStop Content, a provider of original, top-notch written content for business owners and media agencies.

Social Media Brand Meltdown

Social Media Marketing Gone Wrong!

As many of you may have seen or read online already, “Amy’s Baking Company Bakery Boutique & Bistro” in Scottsdale, Arizona, suffered a publicity meltdown like none other when the owners took to their Facebook account.

The owners were featured on a recent episode on FOX’s Kitchen Nightmares where celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey visits struggling businesses to turn them around. After he dumped them on the show for being too difficult to work with, the owners Samy and Amy Bouzaglo decided they were going to sign onto their Facebook account to respond to criticism from online users. The results were not pretty!

In a profanity laced rant, the owners seemingly added fuel to the fire for anyone reading, and the news has spread like wildfire. Read this Buzzfeed article for a more detailed account and summary.

Internet Marketing Done Right

This brings up two valuable lessons. Social Media is an incredibly valuable tool to use to communicate your message to the masses, and your online reputation can spin out of control in minutes. Social Media Marketing and Reputation Management are critical components to a successful Internet Marketing campaign. We work with companies across many industries, distributing marketing messages on their behalf, posting reviews and testimonials from their clients, and staying active with their client base.

Let us show you how we can help your business by handling your Internet Marketing, regardless what the needs may be.