2 ways to maximise the impact of your e-mail marketing

Email marketing can be so effective that it can generate a US$38 ROI for every one dollar spent. Not everyone manages to realise that kind of return, however. Failure to reap rewards like this from your email marketing is not a question of your content, nor is it a matter of the size and quality of your mailing list. If you are not maximising the potential of your email campaigns, it is probably because of a lack of focus or coherent strategy. While you may get some returns from just hitting ‘send’ and hoping for the best, the only way to get the most from your carefully thought out email content, is to take a managed and strategic approach to your mailing list. Here are two tips that can help you turn your email marketing into the ROI machine it is capable of being.

Focus your emails by segmenting your contact list

One of the most common mistakes in email marketing is assuming that you can get results by sending the same message to your entire mailing list at the same time. However, you cannot treat all members of your audience as if their needs are the same. To maximise the impact of your emails, it is better to carefully segment your contact database so that you send the right message to the right people.

On the flipside of that, segmentation will also stop you sending the wrong messages to the wrong people. It may seem as if this is stating the obvious, but it is worth emphasising that sending the wrong message can damage your brand and your audience engagement. The only result you normally get from a misdirected email is an ‘unsubscribe.’ The segmentation of your contact list, therefore, becomes about more than just creating conversions in the short term. It is a matter of long-term audience engagement and nurturing trust.

You should be very careful about how you segment your database, however. First make sure that the segments you create properly represent your company’s aims and the business sectors that it serves. Then be sure that you fit the right contacts into the right segments. That will take a bit of scrupulous data gathering and analysis before you drop all your audience members into the right segments.

Sets goals, devise strategies and send emails tactically

As with any tool in marketing – or any other field for that matter – emails should be used in a carefully planned way, in the service of specific goals, and as part of strategies devised to meet those goals. Before sending out an email, decide why you are doing so. Set a SMART (specific, measurable, attainable and timebound) goal for each mail, and make sure that the mail is drafted and sent accordingly. Part of this is ensuring that you always send the right message to the right recipients at the right time. Make sure that the context and content of the message is appropriate for the specific market segment at the time of sending. This requires full knowledge and careful monitoring of your segmented contact list.

For expert help in segmenting your contact list and getting the most out of your email marketing campaigns, contact WSI OMS.

LinkedIn’s COVID-19 marketing guide

LinkedIn’s COVID-19 marketing guide

In a previous post, we unpacked LinkedIn’s helpful guide for the marketing industry. In this second part, we’re delving deeper into the strategies, activities and information that has been proposed for business owners who want to grow and see a return on the investment they are spending on marketing during COVID-19. 

LinkedIn’s key steps to showing the impact of your marketing activities: Part 2 

1. Make measurement easier

Getting an accurate look at the ROI of your marketing spend is vital to understand where you are wasting money that could be better spent elsewhere. With economies declining worldwide, it is more important than ever to know what you’re getting for your investment to ensure growth even in the toughest times. 

LinkedIn understands that this is a crucial aspect of business ownership, and has made it even easier to measure and prove your ROI when spending your marketing budget on the platform. In this endeavour, LinkedIn has partnered with various providers such as Google, Moat and Acxiom to help you optimise your LinkedIn measurement strategy. The aim of this is to give you confidence in using the platform and proving outcomes based on brand, business and performance. 

Whether you aim to educate your audience, generate more leads, or create awareness for your brand, LinkedIn’s performance is being showcased through a variety of partnerships, whether native or 3rd-party. When using these accurate measurements to make business decisions, you’ll have better information at your disposal to increase your decision-making abilities and drive your business into the post-COVID-19 era.

2. Implementing best practice

This section provides a valuable, easy to follow list of tips to help you measure the impact of your investment in ad campaigns on LinkedIn. It takes you through various stages from launch to A/B testing and provides links to helpful resources for each of the steps in the best practice section. 

Let’s take a look at the tips:

  1. Be clear on your marketing goal and use it to identify your key metrics before you launch a campaign.
  2. Use the insight tag in LinkedIn to understand which actions your ads are driving (including sign-ups, downloads and sales).
  3. Create Lead Gen forms to accurately track the metrics at the end of the funnel (such as cost per lead) to ensure that you’re spending your budget on value-creating activities.
  4. Study your campaign results. The recommendation is to review your results after 7 days, but it’s always worthwhile to check in on your results as your campaign ages to determine performance over different periods. 
  5. Take note of the audience demographics from your campaigns. This will help you to target audiences more accurately in future and customise your messaging to suit the audiences who respond best to your campaigns.
  6. Improve your bids to get the best for your budget by studying your performance insights. The campaign manager should become your virtual “war room” so you can adapt and improve your messaging across the various aspects of your campaigns.
  7. Test your messaging with A/B testing, so you understand how to better link messaging with audiences for improved results. 

3. Goal alignment with LinkedIn 

In the previous post, we mentioned different scenarios that you might be facing in terms of your marketing budget (eliminated, reduced or maintained). This section of the LinkedIn guide provides you with a low-down on how LinkedIn can help you reach your goals, the accountability process behind these activities, and the tools that will be implemented in the process whether your budget is more, less or the same as pre-COVID.

From understanding insights from the market and applying strategies used in recession economies, LinkedIn can help you to use organic methods and free tools on the platform to reach your goals if your budget has shrunk to zero. Suppose your budgets have reduced, but you still have some funds to apply. In that case, LinkedIn can help you to understand where your potential customers are consuming content, and how to match up with your ideal audience to improve performance with a mixture of free and paid tools on the platform.

For the business owners who have maintained their marketing budgets, LinkedIn provides an array of organic and paid strategies to reach a larger target market, generate leads, drive sales and awareness and build authentic brand messaging. This level of spend on LinkedIn gives you (as business owner) more options and also gives you access to weekly check-ins to determine your progress across the tools on the platform. 

The fantastic news about goal alignment with LinkedIn is that there are many options for every budget, so no business owner is prohibited from participating on the platform.

If you’re ready to focus on your digital strategy and improve your ROI on marketing activities, download the eBook now. 

If you want to revitalise your marketing, digital marketing strategy, or LinkedIn content, contact WSI OMS for assistance during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Should you add TikTok to your B2B digital marketing arsenal?

Should you add TikTok to your B2B digital marketing arsenal?

With over 800 million active users worldwide, billions of downloads, and a highly engaged audience, TikTok is a digital marketing dream. It’s interactive, collaborative, and undeniably addictive. Recently, TikTok also outshined Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and Snapchat in the App Store and Google Play downloads.

Does this mean B2B marketers should be taking note? Possibly yes, considering the enormous success seen by the World Economic Forum. The WEF recently garnered over 3.5 billion views of one of their TikTok hashtags at this year’s Annual Meeting and has amassed over 1,5 million followers on the platform.

Based on the demographics alone, TikTok does not seem like the most intuitive choice for B2B marketing. We continue to see growth in the popularity of TikTok with B2C brands as they look to reach their audiences in new ways but as the majority of the audience on TikTok is Gen Z, this means that it may not provide the results a B2B brand would hope to expect. Although, we do need to take into consideration that B2C and B2B buyers both want to experience content that is inspiring, engaging, or helpful that adds value to their lives. After all, much like your B2C buyers, B2B buyers are just regular people too with many studies indicating that B2B purchasing decisions aren’t as rationally driven as we might have previously thought.

When you think about it that way, TikTok’s ability to deliver bite-sized entertaining pieces of content makes it a great tool for B2B businesses. It has allowed B2B brands to have a more flexible and engaging approach to video as an additional way to educate their audiences.  

Digital marketing advice: is TikTok good for B2B?

It appears that TikTok could be an interesting new opportunity for B2B brands and businesses. That’s not to say that TikTok will replace LinkedIn as the B2B marketers go to and for many, it probably won’t be a good fit. But whether or not you should try TikTok has less to do with the platform itself and more to do with your brand, the demographic your looking to reach and your resources available to create content.  

Learn more about the TikTok phenomenon and find out if whether or not you should include it in your digital marketing strategy. Need help with your digital marketing and social media? Then contact WSI OMS today.

The 6 best email marketing tools of 2020

Have you assessed your email marketing tactics recently? While it’s true that you can’t afford to neglect any aspect of your digital marketing strategy, email is one that appears to be particularly vital. Roughly 86% of B2B marketers rely on email marketing to reach new clients. That’s a huge number of companies that have recognised the power of email to reach carefully targeted audiences. If you have found that it is not quite as effective for you, it could be that you just need to spend some more time and energy on it, or it could be that your strategy needs a boost – a new tool to help you improve your approach.

There is never any shortage of email marketing tools out there. In 2020, with months of lockdown keeping people more attached to their screens than ever, email marketers have really had a captive audience, and developers have been happy to introduce new tools – or perfect existing ones – to aid their efforts. Here are six of the best ones currently available. All of them can be used for free or upgraded to paid subscriptions for even better results.

SendPulse

SendPulse brings all your customer communications onto a single multi-channel platform: email campaigns, SMS marketing, transactional emails and chatbots. There are over 130 templates to choose from, as well as a drag-and-drop functionality and a feature that allows you to resend unopened mails with different subject lines. The easy-to-use platform enables simple, flexible management of all your email communications.

Zoho Campaigns

Small to medium-sized businesses will find this tool useful. The free plan gives you access to features such as reports, templates and A/B testing. If you are already using the Zoho CRM, then it would make sense to choose this as your main email marketing platform. The free plan is quite limited, but the paid option is very reasonably priced at only US$6 per month for up to 500 subscribers.

HubSpot’s Free Email Marketing Tool

HubSpot’s email marketing package is a very attractive offering, with plenty of features available on the free plan. The easy-to-use drag-and-drop email builder helps to create professional marketing mails aimed at growing your audience. For one-person start-ups and larger enterprises alike, this tool equips users to build really high-end emails that your audience will love. It has the ability to make newcomers look like seasoned professionals, with little effort. It is also quite fun to use and encourages you to stretch your creativity without needing any prior design knowledge.

Moosend

Moosend is another great tool for beginners in the world of email marketing. The free plan offers you a feature-packed mailing platform, although it does limit you to only 1,000 subscribers. Paying the US$10 fee doubles that number. The programme offers a drag-and-drop editor, automation triggers, real-time analytics and more.

SendInBlue

SendInBlue is an indispensable tool for companies that rely on transactional emails. If you require frequent two-way interaction with your customers, from issuing receipts to offering password help, then this is probably what you are looking for. It is an easy system to use and offers several useful custom technical services.

Mailjet

Mailjet’s free plan gives you access to unlimited contacts, APIs and webhooks, statistics and a really impressive email editor. Its intuitive UX means you can just sign up and get going without the need to spend too much time learning the ropes.

If you need some help reinvigorating your email marketing strategy, content marketing or any other aspect of your digital marketing campaigns, contact WSI OMS.

How Covid19 has changed the face of web businesses

How Covid19 has changed the face of web businesses

We’ve been under house arrest for most of 2020. As lockdowns ease and work beckons, here are 6 post covid19 trends for web design businesses:

Working from home 

You’ve baked 100 banana breads, tried all the jigsaw puzzles, washed your hands and behaved yourself. Now it’s time to get back to work. The thought of waking, showering, actually wearing clothes and driving to an office seem alien concepts.  It’s much easier to work remotely from your home space. Agencies need to re-think the flashy corporate offices, expensive rents and weigh up the dead time stuck in traffic. Rather scale down, stagger shifts, use hot desks and aim for minimum in-office presence. 

Meeting apps have matured

Lockdown has provided us with the time and opportunity to get to grips with new group chat apps that allow colleagues to get around an electronic table. Where there was once only Skype, Zoom is now flavour of the month thanks to Covid19 with 200 million daily meeting participants in March 2020, and a month later 300 million! Likewise Google Meet has upped its game. Don’t forget to dress for a virtual meeting even if only from the waist up. Think about your appearance. Look professional. Control your kids and pets.  No cheesy pictures on the wall. 

The possibilities are endless

Web design is advancing at the speed of light. The array of tools and apps now available together with their corresponding tricks and shortcuts is mind-blowing. You need to keep up. Post Covid19, just about everyone is experimenting with Dark Mode – it’s easier on the eye, looks ‘next level’ and is architecturally hip. Perfection is so pre-covid19 as designers are adding imperfections to pristine photographs and hand drawing their own icons and backgrounds. Whilst neon, as a colour, was previously deemed far too cheap and nasty; watch out for electric pastel neon against a black background. It so works.

Tighter Budgeting

The virus has exposed many weak web businesses that were already failing in their systems, with sloppy accounting, late client invoicing and inconsistent quotes. Tighter budgets require more accounting precision. Yes, web design is a very creative business but without attention to the business side, there will be no creative. 

New methods

Business will never be the same again. You need to dare to build new structures and throw out old conventions that no longer fit. Your clients are also feverishly restructuring and innovating and have no doubt switched their strategies to accommodate the new ab-normal. Talk to them ASAP about how they prefer to work now. Check key changes in their staff hierarchy and any radical new thinking. 

Increase your market share

Your web design competitors may have thinned out but this is no time for complacency. First you need to outthink everybody else and be top of your game with your social media and website. Get in first. Reminders, promotions and polite welcome-back communications re-acquaint clients with your offering. Also, if the digital marketing business down the road has closed, it’s a good time to pick up any of their hot web designers.