How Victoria’s Secret Generates An Insane $8 Billion Dollars In Sales Per Year (With 10 Key Takeaways)

On a crisp autumn morning in the mid-1970s, a 30-year-old man named Roy Raymond walked into a department store to buy his wife lingerie. What he found in the store were, tacky designs and unappealing nightdresses that stuck out like a sore thumb under the fluorescent lighting… Add to this the piercing stare of the saleslady who made him feel like a filthy pervert just for being there… The experience was truly appalling. However, it was this horrible experience that sparked a wonderful idea in Raymond’s mind… After finding out that his male friends felt the same way when shopping for lingerie, he saw an opportunity to establish a market where basically none existed. He got a hare-brained idea to build a lingerie store that would make men feel completely comfortable. He essentially designed a lingerie store, FOR MEN! Armed with $80,000 and a lot of guts, Raymond and his wife leased a small space in a mall in Palo Alto, California, and opened a lingerie store. Raymond imagined the fit out of his store to be from the Victorian boudoir era. He went for the name “Victoria” to arouse the kind of respectability that is associated with the Victorian era. And Victoria’s Secret was born! Raymond changed the way people thought about sexy lingerie… And after a few short years his business was booming and he expanded into three more stores in San Francisco and was quickly turning over $4 million in revenue… Fast forward to today, and [...]


The Four Reasons Most Startups Fail in The Today's Competitive Market

The failure of start-ups has become the norm. A lot of motivational speakers and self-help books might site failure as the pillar of success, but that is not true when it comes to start-ups and entrepreneurship. A single failure often costs all the money, motivation, market reputation and finance options. Failure can cost an entrepreneurs credit scores. That is the reason learning from other’s failures is often the better option.

So here we are, exploring the most common reasons for the failure of start-ups in the history of entrepreneurship.

Not having enough funds

Running out of cash is another primary cause of failure when it comes to SMEs and start-ups. Capitals might not be everything when a business is in question, but it is everything when one questions the viability of an entrepreneurial idea. Entrepreneurs need enough funds to keep their companies afloat and running out of it while running the business is just not an option.

Thinking about cash is not being money-minded, it is merely about being smart. For many, actively taking responsibility for the money comes naturally. For others, taking charge of their out monetary affairs can be a huge deal. Business owners often have to learn and relearn the daunting task of managing their profits, making way for dividends and paying back to their creditors.

Not having enough cash may seem like the end of the world, but it necessarily does not have to be so. There are credit unions and online lending companies who are there to help out enthusiastic entrepreneurs with ready money.Debt consolidation is often a viable option for instant business funds. It collates the smaller debts and offers a large lump sum to the clients. This money can settle the debts as well as fund new projects.

Lack of a robust business proposition

That is another too common reason for the failure of many businesses across the world. Yes! All business owners were once a first-timer, and they lacked the experience, but their ability to understand the operations of a business often helped them avert failure.

There are two ways to avoid the imminent failure – learning all the business skills and acquiring the proper skills for running a business or learning about their shortcomings and finding out ways in which they can hire the talent to overcome their limitations. Sometimes, companies have great products and services, but they don't have a way to market their products. The lack of a USP is probably the worst way for a business to meet failure.

Developing a strong value proposition may need a thorough understanding of your competitors. Competitor value analysis and market analysis are mandatory for all entrepreneurs to understand their own products and create a successful value proposition. A lead generation campaign, PPC or CPC campaign, and customer acquisition campaigns are necessary for building a business proposition.

It all begins with a brand image. Therefore, focusing on all kinds of marketing and promotional activities is often the way to present your brand to your customers. You will feel the need to consult expert marketing companies to set up a working marketing plan. It will include print advertisement, out-of-home advertisements, social media publicity and several other techniques.

Not enough analysis

Start-ups often suffer from analysis paralysis and entrepreneurial myopia. It is the lack of enough research, analytical report of the market and not accounting for the unknown factors that can create an adverse effect on the performance. Many effects can ultimately culminate in failure, and pointing just one out as a cause is a failure to analyze failure. For example – a poor decision can lead to the lack of research, fall in product quality and ultimately, that can lead to losses in profit and failure of the venture.

Being shortsighted often affects the business financially and morally. In most cases, it involves entrepreneurs thinking about their products, services, and sales one month in advance, when they should be thinking at least one year in advance. The only way to remediate your business off the effects of short-sightedness is by taking a look at the bigger picture. Switching from a survival mode to a thriving mode often helps to turn a business around from minimal profit to long-term success.

Failure to understand the customers

That is the most significant reason a company fails. Many companies often fail to stay in touch with their customers' needs and demands. Their products fail to meet these necessities and fall flat upon launch. There are times where products are good or even great, but customers want a simple feature change. The lack of incorporation of this change can lead to customer dissatisfaction.

Customers are real people, and even they like attention. The sign of a good company is the one that listens to their customer’s suggestions and demands. The failure to incorporate new changes in product design and services often signifies a certain reluctance on the part of the enterprise. Start-ups that do not pay enough attention to their target group's suggestions, reviews and comments often face the brunt of the same.

The best way to overcome this is to find CRM tools that allow customer database maintenance. Customer Relationship Management or CRM tools can collect all customer data including their names, contact details, product preferences, buying history and their interactions with the company. It is a consolidated way of finding out what each one of them is saying about your latest launch.

The fear of failure should not keep budding entrepreneurs from taking their chances at success. It is true that start-ups often have a difficult time seeing progress due to their limited funds and their limited employee count, but it is not impossible to embrace long-term achievement for anyone. All you need is a keen understanding of your own business proposition, brand image, and finances. Getting to know the causes of the most prominent failures should be able to help you avoid them on your path to profit and success.

Author Bio

Simon Morris is an experienced and skilled Business consultant and Financial advisor in the USA. He helps clients both personal and professional in long-term wealth building plans. During his spare time he loves to write on Business, Finance, Marketing, Social Media. He loves to share his knowledge and Experts tips with his readers.


Are You Making the Most Out of the New Google AdWords Interface?

Since Google released its new AdWords interface, it has received mixed reviews from the users – while the design is very sleek and provides a ton of useful data, some of the more experienced marketers have run into difficulties trying to figure out where to find all the features that they need in the new layout.

But no matter what you think of the new design, the fact remains that with it, Google introduced a ton of new features, some of which promise to make a huge difference for the savvy marketers that are able to adopt them quickly.

In this article, we’ll go through some of the most promising features of the new Google AdWords interface and talk about what they can mean for your PPC campaigns.

Promotion Extensions

The new AdWords solution promises extended opportunities for those marketers that want to highlight their promotions and deals without wasting the ever-precious characters that are available for each ad.

The Promotion Extensions function will allow marketers to highlight sales and offers on the ad separately, which can help provide more options to get your message across.

Alternatively, you could use the Promotion Extensions feature to really emphasize the promotion that you’re running, highlighting its main benefits in the headline, copy, and in the Extension.

Advanced Reporting

Another area where Google AdWords have really made strides is its reports – they provide you with more data than ever and do so in a way that’s very comfortable to use and easy to understand.

It’s now easier than ever to keep track of insights into your campaigns, how are different ads performing, as well as numerous metrics such as device and location that can give you new ideas for targeting your audience.

And while AdWords always featured advanced reports on clicks, conversions, costs, devices used and much more, the way the information can be presented and sorted in the Google AdWords interface makes the process of tracking your campaigns easier than ever.

Call Bid Adjustments

Those that have run extensive PPC campaigns know the headaches that making adjustments on multiple bids can be, and Google has finally taken steps to make this process easier, at least for those that want to have an easy way to adjust their bids for calls, placing call information in mobile search ads.

This can be great if you want to prioritize having live conversations with your prospects instead of having them visit your website. By showing your call extension more often on the ads, you will be able to get the most out of your bids.

Campaign Creation

With the new interface update, Google AdWords have introduced advanced forecasting features in its campaign creation process. The forecasting tools allow gaining insights into the potential clicks, CTR, CPT and many other metrics, greatly assisting in the ad planning process and helping in both Search and Display Network Campaigns.

Another great improvement to the campaign creation process is the ability to develop the entire campaign from one page, without having to navigate through numerous areas of the AdWords interface to find the information needed.

Intuitive Design

You can’t underestimate how important the reimagined design of the AdWords Interface can be for marketers. Obviously, at the beginning, there are going to be challenges  getting used to the new layout, but overall, it’s easy to see how intuitive navigation can be once you get used to it.

And a lot has been left to the individual preferences of each user – marketers can now choose how much navigation options do they want to see when working on the campaigns.

Demographics Targeting

Those that liked to play around with Google AdWords Demographics Targeting options in the old AdWords version should be excited about the update – the new interface features some added options for demographics targeting that can help marketers further narrow down their audiences, producing hyper-targeted ads in the process.

Along with the previously available Gender and Age options, now marketers will be able to sort their audience in terms of income levels and parental status.

Parental status can be a real game changer for many – it will allow marketers promoting baby products or toys to have incredible targeting opportunities, reaching audiences that are very likely to be interested in what they have to offer.

As for the Household Income Targeting, it also has huge potential once marketers get familiar with the possibilities – targeting audiences based on the price point of the product can greatly increase the conversions.

This is especially true for AdWords users that sell high-end products that aren’t affordable to most – with Household Income Targeting, users will be able to pinpoint the households that are most likely to buy.

As for lower-income households, these can be successfully targeted with competitively priced products or special deals that bring a lot of value.

 

Author Bio:

Josh Williams is an experienced SEM Manager at One Egg. He combines in-depth expertise in PPC and content marketing helping businesses of all sizes.


7 Ways to Optimize Your Landing Page for High Conversions

Landing pages are a crucial element of digital marketing strategies. They provide a direct path for visitors to follow to complete your desired action.

To get the most out of your landing pages they should be optimised. A typical landing page converts anywhere between 1 and 3 percent but this could be a lot higher with the right optimisation and targeting.

Like most marketing tactics it can be tricky, almost impossible, to get right the first time. The best campaigns have often been results of extensive testing, monitoring and learning. To give you a head start, we have put together a simple guide to help you optimize landing pages for higher conversions.

The landing page is the make or break moment for most sites- busy visitors who have casually clicked, curious to see what your page is all about, are 20% less likely to stick around for a slow-loading page- even half a second makes a vast difference. Testing your Internet speed is the key to a successful landing page.

Not only are reader satisfaction and conversion rates dependent on how effectively you can quickly draw in site visitors, but Google search rankings take site speed into account, placing high precedence on how fast your page loads. So testing your page to find the best internet speed possible is essential.

1. Concentrate on a single campaign goal

While this may seem obvious, many landing pages fail because they don’t have a clear single goal, allowing users to get distracted or confused.

Create your landing pages to achieve a single goal and don’t give the user any opportunity to go elsewhere. Your landing page should state a problem, the solution you came up with, why your solution is best and how users can sign up for it. Keep it short and simple for maximum conversions.

Ideas for a campaign goal:

  • Sign up for a newsletter.
  • Submit information through a data capture form.
  • Join a trial.
  • Download a document.

2. Simple but professional design

First impressions are everything. If your website looks unprofessional or outdated your conversion rate will suffer drastically.

You don’t have to spend hundreds on an agency to build you a website, you can purchase some excellent templates from reputable online marketplaces and get them set up within minutes.

Choose a template with a clean layout, ensure it is mobile-friendly and has space for a contact form to grab your users details.

How to spot a good template:

  • Mobile friendly and responsive design. Your website needs to be able to work on any device from a mobile phone to a large screen 4K desktop.
  • Support. Not every template will come with this, particularly free ones, but if you’ve paid for a template you should be given a support email or some documentation to help you get set up.
  • Good templates will be flexible and allow for you to easily make design changes such as colours and fonts. If your template requires layout changes and your coding knowledge is limited you may be better off finding another template that matches what you want.
  • The reputation of the developer should also be considered. Was the template built by a student or a professional design team? Look at the developer profile, if they have good ratings and lots of other templates it safe to say you will be getting a good template.

3. Break your content up

Your visitors don’t want to read pages of information, you have just a few seconds to grab a visitor’s attention which you can do with a bold and straightforward headline.

Keep your headlines short and to the point, keep your paragraphs to a minimum but ensure you get across all the information a visitor will need. Most visitors will skim-read your page so make sure the content flows well and gives the user all the information they need in as few paragraphs as possible.

Use the following to break up your text:

  • Headings
  • Images
  • Blockquotes
  • Bold and italic style text
  • Bullet points and lists

4. Use the right images

Content is important, but images help strike emotions encouraging visitors to take action. You can use images to keep text to a minimum or as a visual aid but make sure they are relevant and helpful to your users.

If you don’t have professional photography available there are plenty of great resources where you can either purchase or download royalty free images such as unsplash or pixabay.

What to look for when choosing stock photography:

  • Firstly check the licensing - do you have permission to use it? If you found the image through a google search chances are you can’t. Use reputable stock websites such as pixabay or shutterstock and you will be given a license for each image use.
  • Is the image focussed and in the correct size? Don’t try to stretch a full image to fill a background.
  • Does the photo demonstrate your product or service? Keep your images relevant.
  • Does the photo create any emotion in the visitor? Studies have shown that visitors are more likely to convert when they feel something for your advert. If your product is solving a problem show an image of someone frustrated and show how you can solve the frustration, it will resonate with the visitor and they will be more inclined to buy.

5. Use plenty of carefully placed CTAs

CTAs (calls to action) are the most important element of your landing page and need to grab the attention of your users and encourage them to take action. Use bright, contrasting colours and a large size font to stand out from your main content.

You might be able to get away with a single CTA if your page is short with little content but if your page has a lot of information you should have multiple CTAs spread out across your page. Carefully place one in each information section so that a visitor doesn’t have search for a CTA if they decide they want to take action. A good example of this is Sean Wes’s membership signup landing page, he has three CTA’s on this page located at key points to ensure visitors are never far from being able to sign up.

Below are two types of actionable CTAs, the good examples are encouraging and sound beneficial to the visitor. The bad type is forceful and feels beneficial to the business, not the visitor. You don’t want to force anyone into taking action, you want to encourage them.

Examples of good actionable CTAs:

  • Learn more
  • Get started
  • Grab my copy
  • Register today

Examples of bad actionable CTAs:

  • Buy now
  • Download now
  • Submit
  • Shop now

6. Keep page loading time to less than 2 seconds

If you do choose to add extra functionality to your page ensure that the loading time of your page doesn’t rise too high. A visitor is not going to hang around waiting for your page to load, keep your page loading times to less than two seconds if you can.

Tips for keeping page speed down:

  • Resize your images before uploading them. Do not upload raw images that are over 1100px wide.
  • Run your images through a free online compressor such as compressor.io or tinypng.
  • Keep external resources to a minimum. If you have the ability to combine resources into a single file this will speed up load times compared to having to load multiple files.
  • Don’t use unnecessary frameworks. Frameworks such as bootstrap come loaded with a lot of helpful code and features, if you don’t use them however they will do nothing more than add extra to your page loading time.
  • Use asynchronous code for Google Analytics and external font libraries.

If you are worried about your page loading time running your page through Google PageSpeed Insights will give you suggestions for areas to fix to improve your page loading time.

7. A/B test as much as possible

Once you’ve got a solid landing page online try making adjustments to the page titles and CTAs while monitoring its performance closely. A/B testing, put simply, is the process of making changes to your page and monitoring the results that happen after.

If you find conversions rise after making changes make a note of them and use them in future landing page campaigns. If you notice a drop in conversions don’t panic, it’s a useful learning experience and will help identify what can put visitors off your landing page.  

It’s important that you only carry out one A/B test at a time if you change multiple elements on the page and you see a spike in your sign ups how will you know which change caused it? Make one change at a time and monitor from there.

What you should A/B test:

  • Images - try using different types of images for example images with people against images that showcase your product or service.
  • CTA location is a popular test that is often run on a landing page. Does your CTA return more clicks when placed in a sidebar, under the main heading or centrally aligned on its own.
  • CTA text is perhaps the most important, changing a single word can have a huge impact. If you have a CTA with the text ‘Download PDF Now’ try changing it something like ‘Get my copy’. You may find that simple changes can have exciting results.
  • Headings can also have a huge impact on conversions. Unbounce have a great case study on various headline types. While every campaign is different, Unbounce’s findings show that conversion rates were not as impressive when a headline focussed on the problem suggesting that your headings should focus on the solution.

Landing page optimization can be tough but spend enough time testing and optimising you should learn exactly what your customers are looking for and be able to target them for a high converting landing page. Follow the above steps and you should have a great headstart on your optimised landing page,  it is important to test each feature and monitor which deliver results.


Small Business Should Use Social Media for Market Research

So many corporations have tapped into the highly successful world of social media marketing. You can see it every time you watch a television show, see an advertisement, and even while chatting with your family on Facebook. We see hashtags all over the place. Each one unique to the brand – each one a phrase that only fans of the brand would know. These tactics not only get users to share content with friends and family, but it provides important market research to help improve the overall experience.

Make an early investment in social media marketing research because of it:

  • Has a high ROI
  • Provides immediate access to data
  • Delivers results from all kinds of independent environments

The reason we see large businesses rely so heavily on social media because it’s just too powerful of a medium to ignore. It might please you to learn that small businesses can also benefit from social media marketing research. This post is dedicated to showing you how to use social media as a way to research your market.

Set Your Goals

The first step to any marketing campaign is that you must go into it with clear goals in mind. This post focuses on the research side so the questions you want answers will look something like this:

  • What exactly are you planning to research? A product? Consumer Behaviour? Customer service?
  • What type of data should you gather – quantitative or qualitative?
  • What metrics will help you define this?
  • What social media platforms will you use to gather data?

Get the Correct Tools

You need to find the right tools in order to meet the goals of your marketing research campaign. Find tools that help you mine the right channels for mentions. You’ll need something that can mine through a lot of data in a short amount of time. One good example of a tool that can help is Unamo Social Media Monitoring. However, other monitoring programs are on the market that can be used to perform that same task.

Another thing to keep in mind is that some tools only allow you to monitor a single channel. You will likely be using multiple channels to meet your goals so these tools would be essentially worthless.

Choose the Best Keywords

Keywords shape your results so make sure you take the time to choose the best ones. If you have a brand, then you might try keywords that are based on a specific product or service. It should be as catchy as possible while still maintaining your brand’s identity.

Depending on your overall goals, the number and quality of keywords will vary. For example, television shows use hashtags related specifically to the show. This ensures that only viewers react to it, providing highly targeted research.

Organise the Data

Once your social media marketing campaign gains some traction, you will start to pull in a lot of data from different sources. That means you’ll need to organise it in order to create clarity. This process is known as data cleaning.

Data cleaning consists of identifying irrelevant or incomplete data and then modify your parameters so that it will reflect more accurate information.

Final Thoughts

The end goal of any business is to transform their social media market research into a well-developed strategy. Just remember that social media is only one tool in an ocean of innovative solutions. The advantage of platforms like Facebook and Instagram is that they allow businesses to interact with potential customers on a personal level. It’s all about building trust and establishing a relationship with your audience.

Jacob Haney is a content marketer presently working with Research Optimus, a business research outsourcing company. A writer by day and a reader by night, he is loathed to discuss himself in the third person but can be persuaded to do so from time to time.


SEO and Content Marketing - the perfect combination?

Digital marketing has become the prime marketing strategy in this decade due to the incredible developments in the technologies that accompany its usage, particularly with the Internet. And in the field of digital marketing, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Content Marketing have been gaining traction as perhaps one of the most-crucial parts of any strategy for many years now.

These aspects play two distinct roles in the digital marketing stream. SEO – which is often regarded as the framework of any online strategy – as long been sought after and worked for as it is the key to attain brand awareness, online visibility, and increase in website traffic. While it involves extensive work on making sure that a particular website is able to increase its ranking in SERPs (search engine results pages), the outcome is often worth it as a business’ website becomes more reputable and more known in the keywords that they are associated with.

Content marketing, on the other hand, is one of the ways for companies to achieve a higher level of engagement and loyalty from their audience and present customers, and as a way to establish themselves as a leader and intellectual in their industry in the eyes of both their target market and of the fellow players in the industry.

But will they be able to work hand-in-hand to give your company the best of what they can offer? Find out with this infographic by CJG Digital Marketing.

 

Embedded from CJG Digital Marketing

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Four Content Marketing Trends You Need to Use in 2018

Content marketing is an area where businesses that invest properly see a good return on investment. Unfortunately, many businesses don’t invest correctly in this space. Many elements factor into the success or failure of a content marketing campaign. Quality of content, strategy development, and better, more focused content distribution targeting are some key areas businesses should focus on. To ensure your business stays ahead, you want to know what to expect in the coming year. Discover some top trends the content marketing world will see in 2018.

1. Updated Original Content

Before the internet age, content consumers followed a more rigid viewership schedule. The news came on at 6:00, football was on Sunday, and their favourite sitcom aired once weekly. Everything changed with on-demand programming options. Services like Netflix, Hulu, and YouTube changed how content was delivered. Users were able to view content whenever they wanted to. Consequently, the demand for new and original content grew as well.

The world of content marketing for the web has evolved in the same pattern.

Content producers now follow quicker turnaround deadlines and prioritize updated content, as users are now accustomed to seeing something fresh and immediately accessible constantly at their fingertips. Building a content strategy that emphasizes and delivers continuously updated original content will give users a reason to keep returning to your site, while simultaneously boosting your SEO rankings.

An audience that values the originality, timeliness and high-quality of your digital content can provide additional conversions and interactions, which can be translated to different services or products. In one example, CBS bet the bank that Star Trek Discovery would draw a significant audience, and they planned the launch of their online streaming service, CBS All-Access, around the show’s pilot episode. Delays forced CBS to use a different original show as the initial launch to get attention, but the concept remained, and CBS still reaped the benefits of Discovery later on.

Give the customer content they can’t find elsewhere, and use that content to market other content and deliver advertising. Earning customer loyalty has always hinged on giving them something they want or need, with an inherent originality in the trade. Now, companies simply enjoy more ways to accomplish this. A company not producing original and updated content through its marketing strategy will likely fall behind the competition.

2. Live Streaming

In recent years, online videos have taken over, thanks in part to the spread of high-speed internet and video-sharing services. Today, anyone with a smartphone or a webcam can make a video, upload it, and build a following. Do a search for a game walkthrough or a DIY project, and you are likely to find your top search hits dominated by videos.

Backup Download STREAMING Computing Digital Data transferring LIVE STREAMING

However, uploaded or static videos don’t hold a candle to the bonfire that is live streaming video. Give an audience the ability to interact with content as it is going on and you give them something that they can truly engage with. Facebook Live offers people the chance to be with their friends, or other content creators they follow, as those influencers share a part of their lives. Suddenly, a mother who is away for a business trip can join her husband and daughter for the July 4th fireworks. A military family living in Germany can bring their extended family to them for Christmas or New Year’s Eve in real-time.

One prime example of a company that has capitalized on live content is Twitch. This streaming service offers gamers a chance to stream their gaming activities live to the world and to interact with viewers through live chat. Through services like this, gaming and other activities become a more interactive experience. Now, Twitch offers creative people, such as artists, chefs, musicians, or cosplayers, a chance to stream their projects, and even allows podcast networks or small internet media companies an avenue to further connect with viewers.

Progressive firms can offer customers a unique look inside the company’s premises, giving the customer base a behind-the-scenes look at the team making the company’s products, or a sneak peek into what’s coming next. Software developers can discuss their daily tasks and the tools they use. The possibilities are endless for the smart marketing team to take such moments and draw customers further into their love and support for a company. As of 2016, more than 80 percent of respondents to a survey indicated they preferred live video to a blog or social media posts, but only 14% of companies reached out through live video. This means a large gap exists for a company to step in and capitalize on what customers want.

3. Living, Interactive Content

Beacon technology takes advantage of real-time contextual personalization to deliver a customized experience quickly and conveniently, thereby adding value to the customers’ lives in ways that matter. A customer can now walk into a business for which they have the app installed and have a notification inform them that certain products are on sale. If the customer has a rewards card with the business, the beacon app can track those purchases to avoid offering discounts on items purchased recently. As of 2016, annual totals of queries for information from beacon programs on Android devices exceeded 40 million. Many companies can benefit from such an app that doesn’t currently implement this strategy, missing a golden opportunity to strengthen customer loyalty.

source: Travelweekly.com

With the recent iteration of augmented and virtual reality hitting the market, companies can enjoy an even stronger way to bring customers into the fold. Imagine having an app that used augmented reality to encourage searching the store for digital items. Also, gamification is a great way to involve interactive content, which can help encourage user exploration and conversion rates with promotions. This adaption can make the experience more enjoyable and give users something valuable in return and a motivation to come back. A company could partner with a game app that uses augmented reality to place ads in key places

4. The Rapidly Evolving IoT

Another means for delivering content directly into customers’ worlds is the Internet of Things (IoT). This refers to technology that encompasses devices and content delivered through them using mediums other than screens. Siri and Alexa stand as the prime examples, giving a user the ability to interact with a variety of devices or services, including content delivery. Estimates predict that approximately $6 trillion will be invested in IoT technology and solutions within five years. The interest around the anticipated boom in IoT creates various opportunities for secondary markets and windows for new forms of interconnectivity.

IOT business man hand working and internet of things (IoT) word diagram as concept

Healthcare is one of leading industries being adapted to accommodate IoT devices. Alexa can currently give someone instructions for CPR and explain how to spot a heart attack for example. New developments are on the horizon. The younger, more health-conscious generation has created a large market around wearable devices and monitoring systems. As AI continues to influence how we interact with digital applications, content takes on an entirely new shape. Virtual trainers, interactive exercise instructors that adapt to a user’s body responses, and many other potential forms of consumer digital interaction provide new avenues for delivering content.

Additionally, healthcare institutions and their existing patients are increasingly reliant on big data and comprehensive healthcare solutions. IoT can influence how patients deal with pharmaceutical industries through interactive and wearable gadgets. Companies can leverage this constant device interaction to plan audiobook sessions, news reports, or health tips around a users’ mealtime habits or sleep patterns, to provide content when it’s most appropriate. With so many devices pairing and exchanging handshakes for a variety of purposes, the opportunities for growth are endless.

Pay attention to these four trends to keep your content marketing fresh, original, adaptive, and forward-facing in 2018.

Stephen Moyers is a digital marketer, designer, avid tech-savvy blogger. He is associated with Los Angeles Web Design Agency - SPINX Digital. He loves to write about web design, development, digital marketing, social media and much more. Apart from writing, he loves travelling & photography. Follow Stephen on Twitter & Google+.


Ready, Set, Go: How To Strategically Growth Hack Your Ecommerce Business

You’ve launched your ecommerce business and it’s all going fairly well, yet even though it may be early days, we could always benefit from a bit more traffic. It’s one thing to be patient and wait for all your hard work to pay off, yet if you really want to give your business the best chance at success, you’re going to need to think outside the box and try your hand at a little growth hacking.

Don’t worry; it’s not as tough as it sounds. In fact, growth hacking has become such a staple of digital marketing that you would be doing your business a disservice by not employing these tactics. So to get you started, we’ve put together a quick guide to growth hacking your business and optimizing your content for maximum conversions.

Wait A Minute: What Is Growth Hacking?

If you’ve never heard of growth hacking before, the term can seem a bit intimidating. However, there’s no clandestine undertaking required; growth hacking is all about optimizing your marketing approach and making your business work for you to increase its own success.

Growth hacking strategies focus on improving the user experience and fostering consumer engagements that ultimately draw more traffic to your website, increase conversions, and close more sales. All you need to do is find the best ways to reach and appeal to your target audience, so you can receive the greatest ROI for your marketing efforts.

Write Some Guest Posts

A surefire way to earn a little more traffic and give your SEO a boost is to create some guest content for sites within your industry. You will need to choose these sites carefully, as it is important that they are reputable, and that their audience is likely to be interested in what you have to offer. If not, your efforts will be wasted, and could even have a negative impact on your site’s visibility.

However, high quality guest content will raise your brand’s profile by demonstrating your knowledge and authority to audiences who have not yet found your website. Carefully chosen backlinks in this content will guide them to your site and help to improve your offsite SEO.

Be careful when choosing your target keywords, as they need to be relevant to your niche, while not outcompeting your onsite SEO efforts. Using the same keywords throughout all your content is often known as ‘keyword cannibalization’, whereby you diminish your success by competing with yourself.

Split-Test for Increased Conversions

Every aspect of your marketing campaign can be polished for increased impact on your chosen audience. Yet sometimes the changes required can be abstract – or less than obvious. Split-testing helps you to refine your approach by simultaneously releasing marginally different versions of the same ad, promotion, landing page, or product design.

By comparing the success of each version, you can gradually narrow down the features that combine for the best possible results. You can’t please everyone at once, but you can still go a long way towards it by narrowing down your options until you find a combination that appeals to the greatest percentage of your audience.

Split-testing can also help you to segment your audience and identify when engaging certain groups requires you to adjust your marketing approach beyond usual expectations.

Act On Exit Intent

Now, we know that most people aren’t too fond of pop-ups, but when someone has already decided to leave your website, then it’s your last chance to re-engage them and keep them on your page. This is where the exit intent pop-up comes into play.

These pop-ups appear when a user is about to leave your store without making a purchase. In them, you can offer something such as a discount or freebie to encourage them to stick around and consider buying something.

As we’ve already discussed, split-testing is a great way to figure out which offers work best for your audience, so you can combine these strategies to really double-down on this aspect of your marketing optimization.

Embrace User-Generated Content

Social proof is a big deal, as many consumers are more prepared to trust the opinions of people in their networks than of the brands they are purchasing from. This is one of the reasons reviews can be so useful in the promotion of a product.

However, you can go one step further by embracing a range of user-generated content. This could be anything from photographs of them using your products to articles about topics relevant to your industry. GoPro has nailed this aspect of their marketing strategy by creating a channel where videographers can share clips recorded with their GoPros, each of which links back to the store page for the camera used.

Reach Out To Buyers Post-Sale

The journey isn’t over when the purchase is complete. Ideally, you want customers to come back again and again to buy from your store. Better still, they might recommend you to friends and family, further increasing your sales.

This means your interactions with customers after sales have been completed are extremely important. Why not send a thank you message to make customers feel appreciated, while simultaneously offering an additional confirmation of their purchase? If you’re a Shopify subscriber, apps like Happy Email or Automatic Thank You Postcard make it easy to show your appreciation, with very little work from you.

You could even include a physical thank you note (or postcard) in their delivery, which you can supplement with a request to tell others if they have enjoyed buying from your business. People often share their thank you notes on Twitter, or other social channels. So not only will you have made a great impression, you even get some bonus visibility.

Credit: Pixabay

Of course, these are just some of the ways you can growth hack your business. But as you get to know your audience and figure out what makes them tick, you’ll quickly come up with even more ways to get your brand name out there and boost traffic to your store.

For example, as your popularity grows, you might set up a referral system, or implement a loyalty scheme. The possibilities are endless, but there is no single strategy that outperforms them all. You will need to work with your business data, and choose those solutions that are best suited to your audience and to the aspirations of your brand.

But all that effort will pay off, as the beauty of successful growth hacking is that it continues to increase your returns. So with careful maintenance and a willingness to put in the time at all stages of your growth hacking journey, there is no reason you can’t achieve and surpass your ecommerce goals.

 

 

Victoria Greene is a branding consultant and freelance writer. On her blog, VictoriaEcommerce, she shares tips on ecommerce and how writers can hone their craft. She is passionate about using her experience to help other businesses grow their brands online through great content.


How to scale your live video audience

Scaling your audience is highly important if your sole aim is to make lots and lots of money. We often try to find out time to keep a balance between work and personal life.

Monetizing your venture is a commendable idea. But can you do it without scaling your audience?

You can certainly do without scaling. However, in the long run these missed specks will come back to haunt you.

Anyone who is looking to scale their business must set some proper goals. With a proper vision you can include better monetization strategies.

You can pursue some nitty-gritty techniques so that you can scale your live audience with immediate effect.

Don’t just think of how to make money live streaming an event but try to be better with it.

Let us discuss how to improve live streaming.

Create and Share Content on a Blog

Beginning a blog is easy.

What isn't easy and clear is really posting helpful and extraordinary content that is of significant worth.

Having said that, blogging is a standout amongst other ways that you can be an expert and draw followers in some time.

By turning into an expert, you'll naturally start attracting clients instead of forcing them to go through your content.

Entertain audience with offers and contests

Contests and giveaways offer another speedy approach to market your business.

The word free is exceptionally attractive, and individuals will register to anything which would come up with an assured prize.

Post content on Medium.com

Medium.com is of the most loved destinations for content publishing.

This expert webpage presents anybody with the capacity to post helpful content or showcase anything on the web.

It is commendable that you don't utilize this to spam.

Rather, create helpful information and instructional exercises that will additionally improve the content on your site.

The objective is to advertise your live streaming platform the correct way and not by spamming link through a weak content.

Build a Social Media Content channel

Social media offers a standout amongst most open doors for scaling any business, regardless of what sort of business you've begun.

It additionally offers a road to take advantage of the worlds socially connected population, rapidly and successfully.

Plainly, accomplishing a gigantic mission is no straightforward accomplishment; however that shouldn't prevent you from building up a content channel where you can spread value across social media to raise the awareness of your offers.

Create YouTube tutorials

Take a deep breath and plunge into the universe of video with YouTube instructional guidance.

Making a mainstream YouTube channel isn't simple, however it is well justified, despite all the trouble.

To do it, you need to give inside and out instructional guidance, helping individuals to truly understand a problem or take care of an issue. Whatever you do, try imparting the best knowledge possible.

Thus, you'll turn into a specialist and an industry pioneer, at last prompting more prominent exposure and in the end, make more money.

How can you scale yourself as well as your audience?

Scaling, in the simplest of definitions is ideally the phenomenon carried out when you have multiple servers used to stream your live video to a larger audience.

Servers arranged in such a way are referred to as “Server Pools”. Various methods can be used for scaling, depending on stream type, target audience and it's possible to use a combination of methods to be sufficient for your needs.

When would you scale your live video audience?

There are some specific moments when you would require scaling your audience. The specks below describe when and how to scale.

  • Analyze the number of video streams running together. Also take their bitrates into account.
  • Analyze the estimated volume of your audience. Check if you can control the number of viewers.
  • Keep a track of the short and long time budget.

What are the options available for scaling?

Different tools present in the market aid in scaling your live video audience. Certain streaming media server software implements tools such as live stream repeater.

Live encoders producing content connect to the servers and players are connected to the edge servers (a server residing on the “edge” between two networks).

Edge servers are connected to the original servers for repetitive live stream.

If you have the question of how to improve live streaming, keep in mind to add more edge servers and direct them to the streams coming out from the origin server.

On enabling an HTTP-based playback, these streaming engines associate each of the HTTP connection with different internal sessions so that every speck can be traced.

In case the target audience is on a private network, you can use UDP (User Datagram Protocol) so that you can broadcast live streams to a wider audience.

In multicast routers provide the capacity to deliver streams instead of a “server pool”. Sending out a single stream through the streaming media server software to the multicast address and players connected to the multicast address to get the stream is how the scaling works here.

Using UDP and other alternatives have delivered 10-15% growth in delivering spectacular outputs with a cut-short buffer time.

If you are looking how to improve live streaming, be sure that the competition is huge.

It's anything but difficult to waste efficiency on blog entries, social media and different things that survive for just a short span.

Using a tool like Crowdcast or Wowza, you can naturally record all your live occasions and implant them onto your site.

Cover subjects that will stay significant forever, and you'll develop an archive of recorded occasions that your crowd can appreciate for quite a long time.


Content Marketing for SEO [Infographic]

Kelly over at Copy Goals has published a great Infographic that brings together all the major statistics on Content Marketing. The article Content Marketing for SEO: Incredible Statistics & Effective Strategies is well worth a read.

Here's the Infographic (Attribution copygoals.com ).

Content Marketing for SEO