Tag Archives: TFM&A

My Twitter week (w/e 6 March 2011)

A belated post (everthing seems to be belated at the moment with two boys and a marathon to consider!)

Monday was Oscar’s fall out day, where The Social Network missed out on the biggies. It was fascinating watching the breakfast shows falling over themselves to get a minute with the celebrities attending the post Oscar’s parties. Quite why people like Jamie Oliver and Katie Price were there remains beyond me.

In the Twittersphere, Econsultancy were remarking on another brand penalised for dodgy SEO practice, this time JC Penney. Be warned, like TV licence vans, they get you eventually. New rules on product placement on British TV were unveiled, paving the way for fries with everything.

Tuesday came with news that The ASA is now including online campaigns, websites and email marketing within its policing claims remit.

Wednesday, I headed to Technology for Marketing and Advertising at Earls Court. If you missed my write-ups, head over the BDB Blog or click here and then here. There was still time (and wifi) to pick up the ‘official’ launch of Seth Godin’s new output from his publishing Domino Project, a new book called Poke the Box.

Thursday saw Charlie Sheen‘s Guinness Book of Records entry following his tigerblood enfused Twitter antics hit the mass media.

On Friday, a genius Royal Wedding cash-in was unveiled in the form of two stories centred on new Mr Men character Little Miss Princess. The ever inspiring @oneforty posted a blog on 8 Ways to Use Social Media to Track Your Competition.

What have you been reading and sharing in the last seven days?

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Interactive video – trend or gimmick? (TFMA 2011)

The first session I attended at this year’s TFMA was given by Steffan Aquarone from Venio and focused on the latest developments in interactive video and how it allows content owners to make objects in their videos clickable thus enabling objects as links for viewers to ‘find out more’, ‘buy now’ or even drive the story that unfolds.

There is no hiding the significance of video in both consumer and business marketing. Video search takes up 50% of online search, YouTube is classed as a search engine and a growing proportion of video is now watched within Facebook.

Interactive video gives over control to the viewer and works best when it contains a genuine first or a gimmick in order to generate interest and drive traffic.

Getting video to go viral means interactive video can be used to meet a number of objectives.

– Increased sales conversion

– Engagement

– Improve delivery of information

– Provide entertainment

– Drive website traffic

Clickable video, like the Tippex example below are not new but are now becoming more accessible through suppliers like Buto. (Note this is NSFW, use headphones on the first bit – the second bit is inspired, I tried ‘sings’, ‘eats’ and ‘hugs’ – you’ll see what I mean!)

Considering the objectives above, clickable video works best in the following scenarios

– Increased sales conversion (use a ‘click to buy’ device in the video)

– Engagement (like Tippex, offer multiple story flows)

– Improve delivery of information (offer a ‘find out more’ mechanic)

– Provide entertainment (utilise games and incentives)

– Drive website traffic (have a high gimmick factor which generates leads)

In summary, and in thinking about how to put interactive video to good use, think first about your target audience, then about strategy, and only then about the tools. And if you fancy doing it through YouTube it is reasonable easy using the annotation link here is a video from ChadMattRob but if you want to skip the hi-jink to 3:30 you’ll get the tutorial.

Overview of TFMA 2011

Technology for Marketing and Advertising (TFMA) is one of my favourite shows of the year. It provides lots of opportunities to catch up on the latest thinking in the digital space, to see the latest technology up close, to talk to leading suppliers and attend lots of free keynote presentations and seminars from leading brands.

Though there is an extensive exhibition, the real draw is the growing seminar programme. It was clear this year was the most popular yet, as organisers opened up a number of new sections on the exhibition floor covering email, mobile, analytics, social media, affiliate marketing and online advertising in addition to all the usual attractions.

Traditionally a free show, a Priority Pass was introduced this year, which guaranteed entry to all the keynote presentations, for £99. An interesting proposition given there were 2,000-3,000 attending, yet the keynote theatre probably only catered for 400-500. This left hundreds of visitors, myself included, unhappy at not accessing the first keynote from Facebook at the start of the day.

Less of a money spinner but more visitor friendly would have been to double the size of the keynote theatre or perhaps use unutilised space at the back of the hall to run video relay on large screens, perhaps seeking to make additional revenue by locating an additional (and over priced) coffee zone. This and the total mismanagement of queuing for all sessions need review for 2012.

That aside, most of the sessions were superb and offered lots of food for thought for the marketers and business owners attending. Though there was a natural bias on speaker’s parts to cite big brand FMCG consumer marketing case studies. I always think this is nice, but mis aligned with the b2b responsibilities of most attendees, but there was lots to learn.

Head over to The BDB Blog where you can get my take on the following sessions:

I also tweeted extensively yesterday on the Twitter hashtag #TFMA. Feel free to check back on what everyone was saying.

Marketing shows you should be attending

Technology for Marketing and Advertising 1-2 March 2011, Earls Court, London

A great show with a fantastic keynote program including Google, Facebook, Ebay and Cisco, lots of breakout seminar programs covering topics such as direct marketing, CRM, data, email, mobile, social media, online and affiliate advertising.

With hundreds of the leading suppliers exhibiting, I’ll be attending this free event on day 2 (2 March) for my third consecutive year to keep up-to-date, make contacts and obtain inspiration.

Social Media World Forum 29-30 March 2011, Olympia, London

This is a social media specific show with a number of interesting sessions. Though the keynote programme is paid for, there are social media hubs taking place throughout the conference on the exhibition floor and these are free to delegates to attend. I should be attending this too.

Internet World 10-12 May, 2011 Earls Court

Though there is a degree of crossover between this and TFM&A, it is very well subscribed show, again with a strong branded plenary session, lots of workshops, seminars and a range of exhibitors covering digital and mobile marketing, ecommerce, social media and content management.

If I can make it, it will be day one.

TFM&A Manchester 26 May 2011, Old Trafford, Manchester

An offshoot of the main TFM&A taking place in Manchester, the agenda is still in development but as its on my doorstep it will be worth a look.

All the above are free to attend, this one will cost you.

Social Media in Manchester conference, 24 March 2011, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester

I’m joining a strong panel including representation from Asda, Code, McCann and Juice Digital to discuss the very latest trends, issues and best practice in social media. I’ll be presenting on integrating PR and social media in the b2b space. For more, click here. There are some tickets still available, with 15% discount available until 4th March.

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Secrets to better email conversion

This blog reflects on the Econsultancy seminar on advanced email marketing at Technology for Marketing & Advertising, 2010. More can be found at www.econsultancy.com.

If you want successful outcomes from your email marketing campaigns, you need to think about conversion and deal with all the possible barriers to getting them to open it, read it, click through and do something when they hit your website. Yes, all the metrics around email marketing are useful, but they won’t keep your business ticking over if they don’t effect action.

As eConsultancy advocate, ‘think beyond the click’.

1. Start simple. Simple techniques might involve posing a question in the title, placing a big action button in the email and generally giving them enough but not too much so they have to click through for more.

2. Avoid averages. Some ‘experts’ always mention averages when discussing metrics on successful email marketing conversion. But with 2% of prospects opening your email, versus 10% of your customers, an average of 5% gives a false impression of what is happening and what is working.

3. Segment. As a bare minimum, your email marketing should talk to customers and prospects differently. Customer emails need to engage and bind and can be personalised taking into account past behaviour and preferences. You can target customers who have abandoned baskets, failed to complete a download etc. Prospect emails need to be propositioned slightly differently, set out to solve a problem, inform and encourage trial.

4. Create value. Think about the value exchange in both cases, understanding that developing new customers is harder and more involved than up selling and cross selling existing or lapsed customers. Ultimately, know what is in it for them. For customers understand and tap into recency, frequency and value data and build a profile of your most profitable customers. The masters Amazon use expensive collaborative filtering engines to establish what you bought and viewed in order to make similar recommendations. For prospects, offer a service like Hotel Chocolat’s reminder service for anniversaries and birthdays that gives you permission to make contact in the future. All are designed to keep you front of mind.

5. Personalisation. Get your salutations right. Have you deserved the right to use a first name? Conditional content – where certain areas of email (like images and personalised content) can be tailored within an established framework – is now becoming the norm. You can effectively mail merge using data in an Excel – even using what if scenarios.

Above all, keep it readable and keep it credible. Imagine your email without the images – the message and who it is coming from should still be clearly understood.

Image from http://www.theweblog.be

Are you using the right web analytics model?

I have been inspired to share some of the content I picked up at Technology for Marketing & Advertising, 2010.

This blog reflects on the Econsultancy seminar on web analytics. More can be found at www.econsultancy.com.

If you are into evaluation, (and my blog statistics suggest most visitors are), you need to start providing credible reports on return on digital marketing investment. Attribution models help allocate lead generation and customer conversion to specific activities but model used can give a very different report.

There can be massive differences in what your website statistics and advertising statistics tell you. That’s because there are natural drop offs between people clicking an ad, opening an email, clicking a link to your site (the ad stat) and staying on your site long enough to register as a session (website stats). It can be down to simple things like realising they have gone to the wrong or irrelevant site, the home page taking too long to download or a loss of internet connection.

At a deeper level though, understanding how to attribute the success for a conversion is gaining importance in internet marketing. There are essentially three different strategies which can be employed to help give you a view on web traffic. These are commonly referred to as ‘last click’, ‘conversion’ & ‘weighted’.

Last click is the most common and easiest to monitor as it attributes credit for the conversion on the last click. So if an email is sent which results in 20% clickthrough to site, the email takes the credit. The major drawback in this model however is that it fails to take into account any other touchpoints, which inevitably provides a false impression of what works.

Conversion isolates a click and offers a thread so is ideal for affiliate enterprises. It does however provide the greatest risk of duplication and double counting as there is no guarantee that the clickthrough ends in a sale.

A weighted approach tries to allocate credit to all aspects of campaign but is obviously the hardest to manage. Dell and other direct marketing giants pioneered the concept of dedicated landing pages to help allocate traffic to specific channels and activities. Other sites bluntly ask how you arrived at the site.

I think the key thing for most businesses is simply to start monitoring where your traffic is coming from. If you are not, start monitoring your clicks, traffic and conversion today. If you already are, perhaps this post has given you some food for thought on exactly what you are monitoring.

Image from willscullypower WordPress blog