Running a Successful Marketing Campaign

Every good product, service and business have returning customers. Returning customers spell business success and are vital to the continued good health of the company. Every business needs to develop matrices to calculate the number of returning customers v/s first-time customers.

Why are returning customers so vital and what do they have to do with marketing campaigns?
If the number of returning customers is minuscule (under 15%), it means that the marketing campaign is successful but the product or service does not meet quality expectations. This results in more and more funds being diverted to marketing campaigns. Stop the marketing campaign and business will have to fold up. Obviously, this is not a healthy situation.

You might have noticed that there are a number of businesses that are doing very well despite spending insignificant amounts on marketing.  A good example is BOSH from Germany. When was the last time you saw a BOSH advertisement? And yet, their products are used in most automobiles around the World.

Assuming your product or service is excellent and you have a significant number of returning customers, you probably (unlike BOSH), will still have to spend some money on marketing campaigns.  But these marketing campaigns would have to be split into two types – a marketing campaign for the new customer and a marketing campaign for the returning customers.

Yup! From time to time returning customers need to be rewarded for buying your product or service. Technically, this is called inbound marketing.

Running a successful Inbound Marketing Campaign – Create attractive, meaningful content
Remember an inbound customer already has significant knowledge of your product or service. He or she does not need a sales pitch.  What they need is a reward pitch, a kind of “thank you for continuing to shop with us, here’s your reward” kind of marketing campaign.

Maximize use of the social networks to percolate the message. Nothing catches on like a discount or some form of discount e.g. “Buy 1 and get 1 FREE”.

Create landing pages that specifically cater to the content in your marketing campaign.
If your advertisement claims to offer a “Buy 1 get 1Free” make sure the link from the advertisement takes the customer to the specific page that provides details to that offer.  The other day I happened to click on a link that claimed to offer Nike sneakers at under $35 a pair and landed up on a page that was offering Nike sneakers starting at $250. I gave the site 10 seconds worth of my time by scrolling down to see if there were any $35 sneakers and found none. Close site, back to Facebook! Meanwhile the advertiser would have had to pay for the click that brought me to his site but generated no revenue.

Make good use of Facebook Leads
Facebook displays adverts primarily based on user comments and messages. Facebook continuously searches for keywords specified in all live advertisements. So if the keyword is shoes or sneakers and a user is discussing or mentions shoes or sneakers, the user will be shown any active advert for shoes or sneakers for the user’s age, gender and demographic group. Facebook’s inbuilt system of identifying qualified leads is quite effective – make good use of it.

Use several formats
In advertising, there is no guaranteed success. Keep several advertisements ready. If you find that one does not work, you will merely have to switch to another without having to waste time developing a new one.

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Tips to Marketing Success on Facebook

Of all the businesses undertaking an AdWords campaign (PPC campaign), less than 10% even have a budget for undertaking an AdWords campaign on Facebook. My own investigation reveals that all the campaign managers not only are aware of Facebook but actually have Facebook accounts themselves. When I drilled deeper, half sheepishly inform me that Facebook skipped their mind and the other half say they are skeptical that Facebook could deliver.
Frankly, I’m amazed. Facebook is not only a great inventive tool, it is perhaps one of the greatest success stories of modern times. There are millions of unique customers from all parts of the globe converging each day on Facebook. There are young, old, rich and not-so-rich customers.
As of today, Facebook is displaying targeted ads based on content generated by the user i.e. a user discussing (say) ladies handbags will be shown any available ad for ladies handbags that targets that demography; meaning, adverts targeting the age group, gender and geographic location. Even the all powerful Google Adwords campaign manager cannot provide us with this degree of filtering. So wake up folks. If you are even contemplating a PPC campaign, ensure at least 25% of the budget is set aside for Facebook.
For those of you who have undertaken ad campaigns on Facebook but have not been rewarded with success, here are my tips to marketing success on Facebook. I personally use each one of these and guarantee they work.
Tip # 1 Make use of the EdgeRank System
Some of you may know of it, but most don’t. Facebook uses something they call the EdgeRank system. The EdgeRank system uses the Facebook users own content to determine where and how your advertisement shows up in a user’s news feed. So my first tip is to create an advert or post that makes the best use of the EdgeRank criteria you can maximize its potential (and your ROI).
Tip # 2 Maximize advert potential by increased activity on your part
Post regularly around the same time as the ad campaign. The posts must all be entertaining and relevant. Include photos, videos and relevant links in your posts. Create polls, invite audience participation. The secret of Facebook is “Engage” – the more engaging you are with your target audience, the longer they stay in the news feed.
Tip # 3 Relevant content is the Kingpin of success
Too many businesses only post content pertaining to their company or product or service. It is very little in terms of engaging entertainment. Your content on products or services needs to be interspaced with jokes, funny pictures, polls, funny stories and so on. On Facebook, business content must revolve around entertainment. Was there a funny incident at your factory today? Post it! You will be amazed as to how much response you will receive.
Tip # 4 Start small and test the waters before you leap
Facebook encourages you to start small. You can run an ad campaign on Facebook with as little as $5. Seriously, no other media with such a phenomenal reach allows you to start so small. Formulate an ad and run it for $5 worth. Study the matrices carefully. Study the results carefully. Depending on the number of genuine (not bought) Likes you already have, even a $5 campaign has the potential of reaching out to thousands. Succeeded beyond your wildest imagination? Well, then develop another campaign along the same lines but different content and engage Facebook services for $10 and so on getting bigger with each new campaign.

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How to Search Engine Optimize your LinkedIn Profile

Linkedin is a combination of a social networking and marketing tool for individuals and organizations alike. In fact, it is one of the best and most powerful tool for the individual which is why it is vital to get it right on LinkedIn. Here are tips on how to search engine optimize (SEO) your Linkedin profile.

Open Sesame
The purpose of this blog is not to teach you to create a profile – you will have to learn that elsewhere. The purpose is to teach you how to market your profile. So, assuming you know how to create your profile, the next thing you need to do is click on your privacy settings and set it to ‘public’. Unless you set your profile to public, the search engines will not find your profile and if they don’t then neither will prospective customers or employers or any of your target audience.

Customize your LinkedIn URL
By default, LinkedIn assigns each profile a generic url. This url is not search engine optimized. You should customize your assigned url and make it market-friendly. Here are a few tips to Search Engine Optimizing your LinkedIn url.

If you are looking for job: [Name] – [Designation]. So this might look something like James Ricardo – Robotics Programmer or K Allen – Radiographer or Ambuja Cement – Cement Manufacturers India. When you look at these examples, you can see how it will help prospective customers or employers or employees locate you.

Content is King
When you search engine optimize your Linkedin profile, you need to understand that Search engines thrive on content. The more the content, the more the search engines can figure where to place your profile, i.e. the page ranking. It is therefore a good idea to always fill in the details. Be descriptive without the fluff (after all your profile will be read by humans too). If you have blogged with some degree of success, or have a website, you should include a url to your blogs or website as well. Cross promotion always helps provided of course, the blog is authored in your own name and the website promotes you or your organization. Unless you’ve kept them official, avoid linking to your Facebook, Twitter or other social networking profiles.

You cannot search engine optimize your Linkedin profile without keywords. In the examples mentioned above, the keywords for James Ricardo would be the current designation and designation sought, the various post-grad qualifications, year of experience and so on. The keywords are words that will be used by prospective employers to search for prospective recruits. Although I’ve said that your name should be a part of your LinkedIn url, prospective employers will not be searching for prospective new recruits by name so your name is not a keyword. Its use in the Linkedin url is to make it easier for prospective employers to identify individual urls.

Finally, remember that keywords become keywords only when they are used three or four times in your profile content.

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