Having the right team is more integral than you think. It’s about more than having someone to bounce ideas off of or split the workload – it most often comes down to complimentary skillsets. I don’t need 10 Alex’s following me around all day (ugh, that would be terrible for all of us!), I need people who excel at things I do poorly.
On a broad level, most people can be assessed simply: organized or not, detailed or not, creative or not, techy or not, salesy or not.
So, if you want to run a company that requires sales, and you have a product to sell, you’d better find someone good at selling. Seems obvious, right? I can’t tell you how often I see people try to become the thing they have no chance at being good at, while paying the price financially to try to learn it. Sure, tinker around with playing the piano for years, doesn’t really matter – but when in business, time is money, and more often than not tinkering leads to the demise of a well-intentioned business concept.
Small business owners in particular suffer from this dilemma- they make great sandwiches, but lack the skills to run a successful sandwich shop. The TEAM is what fills in the blanks and makes the whole thing work.
When considering small business marketing solutions, I see too many ‘tradesmen’ (someone who excels at a particular craft, like making shoes or sushi) try to “figure out” how to leverage social and mobile marketing to build their business. They set up a Facebook page, run a couple of terrible promotions, get some flyers they designed using MS Word printed on bright pink paper and expect that to somehow make them money. Ugh. Blame it on the economy, right? BS.
The smart ones invest in a team – people who are tradesmen of MONEY MAKING. Those people are good at making money, and probably make a terrible sandwich…a match made in heaven!
The proprietor articulates the vision and goals for the company, and supports his ‘money making team’ to go make him more money. Meanwhile, he makes sure they keep making great sandwiches.
When considering your goals and roadmap to get there, be honest with yourself, realize your strengths and supplement your weaknesses with great people. A recipe for success.
- Sixty-one percent of U.S. consumers feel more positive about a brand when marketing messages are personalized.
- Nearly half (44 percent) of consumers are less responsive to non-personalized or “mass-marketing” messages.
- More than half (53 percent) are more likely to purchase when a brand personalizes digital communications.
- More than half (52 percent) trust brands that enable consumers to share their marketing preferences more than brands that do not.
Sixty-one percent of U.S. consumers feel more positive about a brand when marketing messages are personalized, according to new research(1) from Responsys, Inc. (NASDAQ: MKTG), a marketing cloud software and services leader. The results, which also indicate that consumers are more likely to purchase from brands that personalize their digital communications, call attention to the need for marketers to let go of dated marketing tactics that treat every consumer in the same way, and move into the relationship era of marketing where marketers orchestrate individual experiences at massive scale.
“In the quest for scale, individual consumer relationships got brushed to the side as marketers felt the pressure to churn out campaign after campaign,” said Scott Olrich, President, Marketing and Platform at Responsys. “Today, in the relationship era of marketing, marketers are realizing that they can in fact orchestrate relevant and targeted experiences at scale across multiple channels, and that this more sophisticated approach can have the greatest long-term impact on the success of their programs.”
“Consumers are demanding more personalized relationships with their favorite brands, so as marketers we must provide our customers with the most relevant content at the right moment throughout the customer journey,” said Alexandra Braunstein, Senior Marketing Manager at XO Group Inc., a global media and technology leader with brands like The Knot and The Bump. “Responsys shares this vision and because of our partnership, we’re delivering increasingly individualized and relevant content, which keeps our customers more engaged and improves brand loyalty.”
Responsys’ survey found that nearly half (44 percent) of consumers are less responsive to non-personalized, or “mass-marketing” messages. Perhaps this apathy is a reflection of the survey finding that nearly two thirds (64 percent) of consumers see personalization as a sign that the brand values its customers. Roughly one half feel respected, understood by and have a sense of loyalty and connection to brands that personalize digital communications.
Marketers are ultimately responsible for driving sales and Responsys’ survey found that when messages are personalized, more than half of consumers (53 percent) are more likely to purchase from that brand. The impact is even more positive on younger consumers between the ages of 18 and 34 who are 65 percent more likely to purchase from brands that personalize the content delivered to them.
With two-thirds of consumers who engage with brands using multiple channels to do so(2), the survey also found that consumers value personalization across all points of interaction, with the most (67 percent) saying it is important for brands to personalize email communications, followed by social media (44 percent), SMS (40 percent) and web display ads (36 percent). Again, younger consumers (18-34) are more likely to place importance on personalization across channels.
In being more targeted and relevant in their communications, brands are also increasingly expected to honor consumer preferences around when, where and how they should be contacted. Responsys’ survey found that nearly two thirds (63 percent) of consumers believe it is important that brands manage their digital communications in line with consumer preferences and more than half (52 percent) trust brands that enable consumers to share their marketing preferences more than brands that do not. Of this group, 66 percent say that if a brand gives them the ability to express their preferences, they are more inclined to purchase from that brand.
The other day I was on a phone call with a friend of mine. We marveled at the money people dump into traditional media. Thousands for radio, TV, direct mail, yellow pages… the list goes on and on. But the return those businesses are seeing on that traditional marketing is so minimal, is it really worth the money?
Marketing has a lot to do with the status quo. People know traditional marketing. They can see it, feel it, touch it. They understand how to utilize it, and they know since it’s been around so long their customers will know what they’re seeing, feeling and touching as well. The problem is that just because something is familiar and “traditional” doesn’t always mean it’s the best option for your business.
Small business owners have a bad habit of obsessing over new customers. That’s really why they use traditional marketing; it’s broad spectrum. Small business owners rely on mass marketing to hopefully entice a few customers who see their message to come into their store. But did you know that a current, loyal customer could be more valuable to your business?
Roughly 12-15% of customers are loyal to a single retailer. Doesn’t seem like a big number yet, does it? But that 12-15% of your customers typically represent between 55-70% of your sales. Now those customers seem a lot more valuable to you, don’t they?
So what I have a hard time understanding is why businesses choose to spend an incredibly large amount of time and money on marketing that’s aimed at such a broad audience. It costs 5-7 times more to find a new customer than to retain one. Implementing a loyalty solution and utilizing mobile marketing can mean the difference between keeping those most loyal customers and trying to rush as many new people through the door as possible.
Mobile marketing is a highly targeted form of advertising, geared toward those customers you know like and buy your product. When you thank a customer for being loyal to you, by offering them an incentive or reward, you show them they mean something to you. That you understand their business is what keeps you making money. And this targeted advertising, because it’s something new, exciting and high-tech, makes small business owners nervous. They don’t see how valuable it could be to their business.
People know there should be a better way to market to consumers in 2013. Savvy merchants are in the market for new, exciting technology that can help them implement better marketing solutions. And they will be a start of a much larger ground swell.
Why does advertising work on everyone else, but not me?
Why do advertisers keep repeating an ad over and over?
We all too often miss the subtle changes we make in our lifestyle based on influences that occur in our environment. From the toilet tissue we buy to the color of hair dye we choose, most consumers are not making choices exclusively for themselves but are also doing what they believe will make others happy.
Through the subtle persuasions of advertising and marketing, we become convinced of a product’s value over time. We get more of a sense of security in our decision to purchase a product the more we see it and the more others seem to be using it. Traditional marketing aims to convince us of majority buy-in and credibility. This is what creates the “buying environment” Jeffrey Gitomer refers to in The Little Red Book of Selling.
Mobile marketing vs traditional marketing is far more direct and panders to our impatient two-second attention spans we all have and gets right to the point. “Come in today”, “Call now” or “Buy now!” are all call to actions you rarely hear or see in traditional advertising.
Mobile marketers need to be careful not to disrupt this buying environment consumers are used to. A push notification with a deal or exclusive offer can be fun and engaging, but too many offers can lead to the consumer losing the sense of exclusivity and begin to perceive the merchant as desperate.
Take a lesson from tried and true traditional marketing and slow things down a bit. Offer information and education, but not always a DEAL. Find ways of engaging customers without screaming “buy, buy, buy!”
Do you know what the top three Google searches are for mobile marketing? The first is “mobile marketing,” and the second is “mobile media.” But the third most popular Google search about mobile marketing is “What is mobile marketing?”
Data like that suggests that businesspeople are still trying to wrap their heads around this growing and evolving industry. If people are still asking what mobile marketing is, then they’re probably also struggling with how to use it to drive leads for their business.
With that in mind, we’ve written this blog post and created an infographic called The 17 R’s of Mobile Marketing. It’s based on a chapter from Go Mobile, the best-selling mobile marketing book in America written by HubSpot VP Marketing Jeanne Hopkins and Jamie Turner, a HubSpot customer and founder of the 60 Second Marketer.
The 17 R’s of Mobile Marketing, which we elaborate on below, should help you ease your way into the world of mobile and show you some best practices for using mobile marketing to generate leads for your business. As always, feel free to embed the infographic on your own blog or website.
1) Review your web analytics to determine what percent of your visitors are using mobile devices to access your website. A simple way to check this is to use Google Analytics, which provides data on whether your visitors are coming in from a desktop or a mobile device. If you’re a retail location, your mobile visits may account for up to 50% of your total traffic. If you’re a traditional B2B company, your mobile visits may be closer to 15%. Either way, tracking mobile visits vs. desktop visits can give you insights into how your prospects are finding information about your products or services.
2) Relevant messages are a critical part of mobile marketing. A great way to keep them relevant is to ask people who opt-in for mobile marketing messages to indicate their interests when signing up. For example, if your company is taking part in a trade show, you might encourage people to sign up for a free giveaway by scanning a QR code at your booth. When they scan the code and opt-in, you can ask them to indicate their business interests, which will ensure that future messages to them stay relevant and meaningful.
3) Request feedback from your subscribers on how they perceive your mobile marketing campaigns. This can be done through regular email, or via a mobile survey subscribers can answer via their smartphone. If you’re requesting feedback via smartphone, keep questions short and closed-ended. Questions like “Can you rate our customer service on a scale from 1 to 5?” are great. But open-ended questions such as “Can you explain your most recent customer service experience in the form below?” won’t be thumb-friendly and should be avoided.
4) Recruit customers and prospects that are receptive to your mobile marketing campaigns. If your target market is between the ages of 14 and 45, the odds are they’re smartphone-savvy and would be likely to connect via a mobile marketing campaign. But if your target market is under the age of 13 or over the age of 65, mobile marketing may not be your best option since mobile usage is lower for those segments.
5) Registering for your mobile marketing programs should be easy, so keep forms extremely short. Forms that are thumb-friendly will get better results than forms that are longer and more in-depth. As a side note, even if your forms are short, your privacy statement shouldn’t be. Prospects and customers will want to know how their information is being used, so be sure to provide an easy way to read the fine print.
6) Rate the usefulness of your campaigns to your subscribers on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the most helpful. By doing so, you’ll be able to track the percentage of your campaigns that provide high value. Why is this important? When someone provides your business permission to reach them via their mobile device, they’ve given you a very personal invitation. (Think about how many people keep their mobile phones by their beds, and this will all make sense.) Therefore, your mobile marketing messages should provide something of genuine value. In other words, be sure to send them more 10s than you send them 1s.
7) Region or location-centric messages can be very valuable to your customers – particularly if the subscribers are encouraged to visit a location for a special promotion. SUBWAY sandwiches in the U.K., for example, sponsored an opt-in SMS campaign where customers received special offers via text when they walked by SUBWAY locations. Similar location-based campaigns have been run on the B2B side of the equation, most notably at trade shows where location-based banner ads were deployed to people participating in the event. When you deploy mobile marketing messages that acknowledge the recipient’s specific location, you’ll generate a higher conversion rate. Ultimately, that results in a better ROI.
8) Reminders about time-sensitive information or tasks are another great use of mobile marketing messages. Doctors and dentists are using SMS to send appointment reminders to patients. And TV networks have run mobile ads that allow people to set up reminders on their mobile calendars about program schedules.
9) Respect the frequency of mobile message use. One study by CTIA.org indicated that text messages are read within 4 minutes of receipt compared to 48 hours for an email message. Since people read some mobile messages immediately, the wear-out factor is higher than with other forms of marketing. Keep that in mind when deploying your mobile marketing messages – too many messages will result in a high unsubscribe rate.
10) Return important notifications to keep customers updated on the status of their engagement with your company. “Your order is being shipped” and “Here is your tracking number” are two helpful messages that customers would like to receive once they’ve opted in to receive messages from you via mobile. Always include a reminder that says, “Click here to opt-out of future messages like these.” Providing that kind of flexibility builds trust with prospects and customers.
11) Respond to “Reply” texts quickly. Text messages from prospects and customers are just as important as a phone call or an email. Unfortunately, they’re often overlooked or fall through the cracks. Be sure to have systems in place that prevent this from happening since there are very few things that will frustrate a customer as much as being ignored.
12) Record and document any issues or feedback concerns, then act on those concerns in a timely manner. Sometimes this may mean a change in the campaign strategy or it may simply mean a change in tactics. Either way, by keeping track of feedback and concerns, you’ll be able to adjust your campaign and improve your results over time.
13) Responsible campaigns and programs will encourage customers to look for the next notification. Design your campaigns to be brief yet tantalizing for your target groups. A successful mobile marketing campaign provides something of value with the promise of additional value for people who stay engaged. That’s why mobile apps like Foursquare and SCVNGR often provide extra bonuses for people who “check in” more than once.
14) Referral campaigns can be a great way to gain new subscribers and customers. One way to do this is to run a mobile banner ad campaign that, when clicked, sends an email or text message to the mobile user’s friends. By providing this “forward to a friend” feature, you’ll get more bang for your buck and improve the ROI of your mobile marketing program.
15) Rely on good systems and software that not only deploy your mobile marketing messages reliably, but also measure and provide statistics about campaign performance. The old saying “Garbage in, garbage out” is as true in mobile as it is in other forms of marketing. The more reliable the data that goes in, the more reliable the results that come out.
16) Reality is that mobile marketing is new, and therefore not many companies have fully adopted a mobile marketing strategy for their business clients. While the vast majority of companies have plans to launch mobile marketing campaigns in 2012, up until recently, most companies didn’t even have a plan in place. Have patience knowing that this is a growing segment – and the growth is definitely accelerating.
17) Rapid adaptation to new trends and techniques in mobile marketing must be incorporated into your plan’s strategy. If a mobile campaign is not working, or if there is a better way to implement a program, don’t be afraid to change your plans. Also, the world of mobile users often expect there to be frequent changes – so set routine changes and improvements as part of your strategy.
There are so many changes happening in mobile marketing today that it’s hard to keep up, but that shouldn’t discourage you from diving right in. The fact is, your consumers are using mobile almost every hour of every day, so shouldn’t you use it, too? Let us know your thoughts on what’s working for you in mobile marketing.
Advertisers are lying to you. They want you to believe that you need to consistently get new customers through your doors. However, it’s important to realize that you already have the customers – what you really need to be doing is keeping your customers coming back consistently. Loyal customers will be your biggest form of advertising through word-of-mouth and recommendations to friends. Watch my video to learn more!