Tag Archives: social media

Top Takeaways from the Gartner Digital Marketing Conference

This year I had the opportunity to attend the inaugural Gartner Digital Marketing Conference in San Diego. The event brought together top digital marketers, which included brands, agencies, analysts and solutions providers, with the primary purpose of driving thought-leadership by educating marketers on the latest trends in the digital world.

As we have seen in Gartner’s Digital Roadmap, digital is exploding; channels are becoming more integrated, cross-device attribution is on the rise and marketers don’t know how to handle the complexity of a creating a seamless user experience across channels. While on the show floor I saw both new and seasoned marketers with an idea of what they want to accomplish, but a skewed understanding of the technology needed to get from point A to point B.

With increased pressure to meet high expectations of consumer demands, brands have no choice but to keep up. Here are some of the top trends that arose throughout the sessions that marketers need to be aware of as they develop their digital strategy:

1. Digital personalization is the new normal: Consumers expect brands to know them and to know them well, particularly the ones who engage regularly and spend often. In fact, one Gartner statistic explained that by 2018, organizations who have invested in personalization will outsell those who have not. The key is for brands to understand how to segment their data and effectively activate personalization at a one-to-one level, while respecting global privacy laws. On the flip side, as analyst Jennifer Polk pointed out, sometimes personalization is about knowing when to remain quiet to avoid offending or over-engaging with a consumer.

2. Identify Gaps in Mobile and Social Measurement: We continually hear that mobile is on the rise. In fact, in one presentation by Gartner analysts’ Julie Hopkins and Mike McGuire, they pointed out that 30% of Facebook’s users are mobile only. The first step is to understand how to connect your mobile and social investments to your objectives by defining your strategy. In turn, this gives mobile and social a specific purpose to work in tandem by exceeding your corporate marketing goals. By tying direct ROI back to social and mobile, marketers can justify to upper management the monetary value and in turn continue to receive more budget as needed for these rapidly growing areas.

3. Innovation is Your Competitive Advantage: One of the most fascinating presentations was by Jon Bridges, the CMO of Chick-fil-A, and Jake Sorofman with Gartner on innovation. The presentation opened by posing the question to the audience, “have you ever used another company’s name to describe what you do?” This made me chuckle a bit as I reflected on the various jobs I’ve held where I compared the company to another to help friends and family understand. The idea here is to forge your own path instead of comparing yourself to others. We can win by leading the pack. However, my favorite idea presented is utilizing your workspace as an innovation center; a place where ideas are crafted to further the business and drive change for challenging business objectives. In turn, this can be applied to digital strategy as workers begin to solve everyday challenges and best meet the demands of their users by having the freedom to explore, create, develop and solve.

Being the first digital marketing conference hosted by Gartner, I was exceptionally impressed at the content, execution and speakers. I am proud to have sponsored the event this year and am excited for its anticipated growth based on the reviews it has received.

Weekly News Roundup

Second Quarter Maintains Positive Growth for Digital Ads as Smartphones Close Gap with Tablets

IgnitionOne just released its highly anticipated Quarterly Report. IgnitionOne’s quarterly report is the longest continuously running quarterly report on Digital Marketing trends. IgnitionOne had some extremely interesting key findings in their report. Search advertising spend is up 9% since last year. Google regained engine market share increasing their share to 79%. On the basis of the report, Roger Barnette says, “our clients closely track ROI and will follow results when deciding where to spend their next dollar.”

Confirmed: Mobile Commerce is Here To Stay

Just in case anyone had doubts, mobile commerce is here to stay. New research conducted by Australian Communications and Media Authority shows that mobile commerce has grown by 448% since 2010. As a matter of fact, the report shows that Australian consumers would rather shop from their mobile device. This growth of mobile commerce can be attributed to the increased ownership of smartphones worldwide. Smartphone ownership has increased 8% since May 2013. Mobile commerce is still growing and show no signs of slowing down.

Facebook Tracking is Changing

Facebook has once again changed the way they track their customers. Facebook has now decided to track what users do outside of their site. This can be viewed as a huge breach in the users privacy. However, facebook claims they are doing this in order to provide more relevant advertisements to their users. Jeff Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy, explains that “Facebook is going to use multiple ways to track their users and sell them to their advertisers.”

CMOs Are Preparing for Digital to Grow to 75% of Marketing Budgets: But almost half are worried about managing this change

The infographics in the article show the future of digital marketing and the trends of the industry over the past years. According to the article, “within the next 5 years, digital will account for 75% of the Marketing budget.” Email and mobile both have grown greatly in channel effectiveness since 2012. Many executives say the biggest problem with switching to digital, is “managing the change.” However, it has been proven that digital is effective, so managing the change should be worth it. 

Ad Age Survey: How Advertisers Are Spending on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Which social media platform are advertisers spending most of their time and money on for the future? The answer is Twitter. The largest goal for marketers, when polled, was bringing “awareness and sentiment” for their brands. Facebook was by far the most dominant social media platform, where 83%, up from 70% of advertisers are now paying for ads on Facebook. However, for a future outlook, advertisers are looking at Twitter as their favored way of promotion. Youtube came behind Twitter and Facebook, falling fourth as the best ad platform for ROI.

Twitter Globally Expands Mobile App Promo Ads, Enhances Targeting

Twitter is now growing to expand its mobile app promotion ads worldwide. The ads ultimately redirect users to download new apps or open their existing apps already downloaded on their smartphone. There is no doubt that Twitter has incredible targeting capabilities. Twitter also offers conversion tracking capabilities for its advertisers, allowing marketers to measure the impact of their campaigns. According to BIA/Kelsey, most of the credit for the success goes to Facebook’s News Feed ads and Twitter’s Promoted Tweets.

Paid-Search Spend Rises, But Marketers Pulling Out Of Partner Programs

9% more was spent by U.S. Marketers this year in paid-search ads. Mobile and tablet devices made up for 27% of total search spend. Running campaigns on smartphones alone rose 173%. The article mentions IgnitionOne’s study on the move away from advertising on search partner sites. “The difference in efficiency on Google is likely due to how quality score is calculated separately for their partner sites,” per the study.

US Paid Search Spend Continues to Rise

IgnitionOne is mentioned on its Q2 2014 marketing report, contributing to large improvements in innovation in paid search technology. The article also mentions different growth engines, such as Google and Facebook’s remarketing platform, Facebook Exchange. It takes note on how much mobile and tablet devices are growing in the market. Smartphone spending amazingly grew by 173%.

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Source: Spartan PR

 

Weekly News Roundup

U.S. Ad Spend Hits $35B In Q1

The United States ad revenue hit $34.9 billion in Quarter 1. This showed a 4% increase in the United States ad spend. The Winter Olympics was the main factor in the heavy spike in ad revenue. Aside from television advertising, display advertisements saw the biggest increase in revenue. According to the article, “the Display Internet business was up 13%.” The company with the biggest advertising growth was General Motors.

How Marketers Can target Online Shoppers More Effectively: The power of segmentation

Nowadays, consumers have an endless amount of choices for certain products. As stated in the article, “Today your customers are really your only source of competitive advantage.” So, what is the best way to target and maintain your customers. The article talks about splitting up your customers into 2 segments: the careful shopper who conducts extensive research prior to making a purchase and the efficient shopper who doesn’t bother with deals and coupons. Once you have your customers placed into the 2 segments, you can adjust your promotional campaign to fit the needs of each segment.

Competitive Analysis in Search Is Linked to Higher Conversions

Knowing your competition is an extremely important tactic to implore in order to do well. However, in search, it is a must to know what your competitor is doing. Knowing your competitors backlinks, content and site structure will give you a leg up on the competition. According to the article, “only 40% of marketers integrate competitive analysis insight into strategy.” In contrast, competitive analysis is proven to be successful and companies should be latching onto it.

When Do Mobile Ads Work?

Marketers should take notice of mobile advertising. For those who are not aware, “mobile display ads can increase brand favorability and purchase intent.” The information on mobile ads are supposed to remind users of what they already know about that specific product being advertised to them. Mobile ads are also meant to be advertised after those initial products are advertised elsewhere in a different form of media. The article states that global spending on mobile advertising is meant to hit $36 billion by 2016.

Ad Spend on Social Media Platforms is Expected to Hit $11 Billion by 2017

Social advertising is growing at an enormous rate. That enormous rate is expected to be $11 billion by 2017. The article provides charts on various ways social advertising is heading in the market. An example includes the age group of males and females that are most targeted in the USA. In addition, “71 percent of agencies said that they ran social media ads alongside other online advertising, and 41 per cent in conjunction with offline advertising.”

Mobile Marketing Goes Awry for Pandora

Pandora, a very well recognized radio station has been known to give their users multiple ads throughout their listening experience. These ads are usually specific to the user’s zip code, which Pandora asks them to enter upon downloading the mobile app. The issue with this is that the zip codes are entered manually by the users. Once a user moves, they will continue to receive advertisements specific to their past location. Luckily for Pandora, advertisers are now interested in running much larger campaigns, nationwide. For now, Pandora has been checking IP addresses of mobile devices and will ask the user to change their zip code if required.

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Source: Silanis e-SignLive

Why Marketers Are Bullish on Video

In 2004, the widespread destruction of the Asian tsunami and the US presidential election were the first events to really find exposure through the emerging medium of online video. Almost nine years have passed and video has not only become one of the most popular formats for content sharing online, but has evolved to accommodate various markets, including advertising.

More recently, advertisers have been leveraging engaging and interactive content in this layout, fueling awareness and branding efforts and gaining momentum within marketing mixes. Over the last couple of years, the shift from PC to mobile has ushered a surge in video, which is impacting the way advertisers allocate their budgets. Mobile and tablet shoppers are three times as likely to watch a video as laptop or desktop users and video accounts for more than half of all Internet traffic on mobile devices, with tablet users three times more likely to watch a video than their smartphone counterparts.

With such providers of streaming media as Hulu and YouTube, television and movies are easily accessible online, giving advertisers premium pre-roll and in-stream video inventory to promote their brand or products. As consumers are widely turning to these providers to watch their preferred programs over television, marketers are able to harness more effective video spots. And with the predicted growth of mobile surging over the next several years, it is evident that video will continue to gain display advertising spend.

Social media is also an incredible catalyst for video growth. Mobile video ads that include social media buttons drive 36% higher engagement and 92% of mobile video viewers share videos with others. Combine the incredible development of social (accounting for 1 in 6 minutes spent online) with the power of mobile and the vast potential in video is clear.

Advantages

  • Video is far more engaging than traditional forms of display advertising, and is becoming increasingly more interactive. The IAB published “Digital Video Rising Star Ad Units,” which delves into the “in-stream and linear interactive digital video ad product concepts,” exemplifying the creative ways brands are able to extend the customer experience beyond the video in unique and captivating ways.
  • Video generates excitement. This year, brands launched their Super Bowl campaigns before game night, and found that preview footage generated 600% more views than when their videos debuted during the event. People get excited about good commercials and are going out of their way to watch these ads on-demand and on-line. Where back-to-back ads on TV are dreaded, glimpses at these shorter online videos are actually sought after.
  • Video allows ample room for creative freedom. Interactivity aside, video provides the opportunity for marketers to think beyond the constraints of the traditional video spot (read: a couple of ingenious automotive brands within the last decade). Original branded content masks the video’s promotional undertones with entertainment value.

Disadvantages

  • Video is disruptive. Like all advertising, video can be a nuisance when all you are interested in is the content beyond the ad. Unlike most display advertising, which can be ignored, video content cannot be skipped over (in some cases, before 10 seconds of play time).
  • Video can be time consuming. Unlike display ads, you cannot skim over video content.
  •  There is a lack of standard metrics for measuring the actual success of video. The same is argued for social, and slowly but surely, we are more able to appropriately attribute credit to the medium.

Where are we headed?

Some brands are shifting 10-20% of their budgets out of TV and into digital video and online video users are expected to double to 1.5 billion by 2016. In 2012, advertisers spent $2.3 billion on digital video advertising, an increase of 29% over 2011. 76% of marketers plan to add video to their sites, making it a higher priority than Facebook, Twitter and blog integration and online video production will account for more than one-third of all online advertising spending within the next five years. Inventory for video ads is becoming available in new places, such as a recent addition of LinkedIn, with more publishers to come.

As consumers become more integrated in technology and the Internet, we can only expect video to continue to grow.

Q&A with Gareth Griffiths, Head of Digital Marketing, SecretEscapes.com

Luxury travel website Secret Escapes recently came onboard the IgnitionOne DMS in order to manage and optimise all its digital marketing channels. We sat down with Gareth Griffiths, who is the Head of Digital Marketing for SecretEscapes.com to ask him about some of his thoughts on the digital industry as well as who he would love to have lunch with… dead or alive.

What do you do?

A little bit of everything digital. Primary focuses are paid and organic search and affiliate marketing. We also have a large customer database so email marketing is a big source of traffic.

What is your background?

Moved from a sales and analyst background into digital marketing

What does Secret Escapes do?

We negotiate exclusive rates for luxury hand-picked hotels and holidays in the UK and abroad, at up to 70% off the price you’d pay by booking anywhere else. These special rates are only available to our members so signing up for free is the only way to get them

Which digital marketing channels do you see as being most important for your particular industry?

Email and paid search are very important. For customer acquisition paid search is key, whereas email marketing is number one for sales generation.

From your perspective what is the single biggest change in the digital industry in the last 10 years?

The biggest change in the last 10 years has to be the rise of Social Media. Whilst the race to utilise Social networks as a sales channel has a long way to go, the access to potential customers with specific interests is a big opportunity. With the use of sites like Pinterest and StumbleUpon increasing at such a rate, there is definitely scope for a luxury travel business like Secret Escapes to source new customers whilst engaging existing members and promoting our brand.

What was your main reason for choosing IgnitionOne?

Management and optimisation of search campaigns can be very time consuming, especially for a small team across multiple channels. IgnitionOne allows us to optimise and analyse multiple campaigns from one place, making it easier to implement a coherent multi-channel strategy and increase time efficiency. The use of predictive bid optimisation should see campaign performance increase and make intelligent budget allocation far easier.

How do you see the digital marketing arena shifting over the next five years?

Mobile has to be the next big shift for digital marketing. The advancements in smart phones and tablet technology will see more and more sales being made via mobile devices. Mobile devices now make up a big percentage of our visits, especially from email and search. I see the computer focussed domination of digital strategy in past years moving through a period of a more even focus and into mobile being the greater focus.

If you could have lunch with anyone, who would it be…dead or alive? 

Leonardo da Vinci. Described on Wikipedia as “perhaps the most diversely talented person ever to have lived”. As a painter, sculptor, architect, musician, scientist, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist, and writer I doubt that the conversation would be boring.

What is your favourite travel destination?

Kenya. Going on safari is an amazing and unforgettable experience.

What is your favourite film and why?

Silent Running. It’s a futuristic science fiction film from the early 1970’s. I first watched it when I was little and the three robots (Huey, Dewey, and Louie) were my instant favourite.