T&Th Discussions: Where will you promote content in 2016?

T&Th Discussions: Where will you promote content in 2016?

Happy New Year’s Eve, everyone!

We’re continuing a new idea here at TraDove’s WordPress site: B2B discussion topics every Tuesday and Thursday.  Have an opinion or insight?  Please join in!  Like the topic for your own Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn discussion?  Feel free to share and continue with us into 2016!

For our new discussion;

Recently, Google has revamped their Google+ brand in a way many are praising as good changes for businesses.  Would such changes bring you into Google+?  Will these be beneficial to your business?

Keep up to date with business trends at TraDove.com B2B social network.

6 Video Marketing Trends to Watch in 2016

6 Video Marketing Trends to Watch in 2016

In the mad rush to predict social marketing trends of the upcoming year, one thing that most all commentators seem to agree on is that video is on its way in.  And it’s coming in a big way.

We’ve looked at some aspects of video in a marketing and social media here before, but the ideas and ways that it can be implemented seem to be getting more and more creative and innovative every day.  Here are six trends noted by Digital Marketer Steffan Pedersen for 2016:

“1. Lower production quality is ok.”

Brands are trying to replicate the amateur Instagram-style smartphone posts, and Pedersen points to Starbucks as one of the leaders in this visual approach.  It gets the point across in a low-key and relatable way instead of bashing us over the head with blatant commercialism.

“2. Be wary of video bloggers/influencers — they can fall down as quickly as they’ve risen.”

Typically there is a reason that vloggers gain a following, and this often involves one of two things: letting their personal life into their videos or their ever-increasing idiosyncrasies.  In using these approaches to represent your brand, it becomes easy to see how too much of either could be detrimental to both your blogger’s reputation and yourself and brand by extension.

“3. Social/mobile video is here to stay. Look out for 360 Degree, Virtual Reality coming quick!”

Quoting stats ranging from Snapchat to Virtual Reality, Pedersen points to not only the increasing reliance of users on mobile video, but also the blossoming technologies that it will soon spread into.  He particularly highlights 360 degree video and leaves it to the readers’ imaginations how this might be used in our marketing.

“4. Facebook video ads > TV ads: A long time coming?”

With more and more content creators publishing their material exclusively on Facebook, the opportunities for advertising is increasing dramatically.  More importantly, unlike traditional TV ads, says Pedersen, Facebook’s platform allows for very targeted advertising to the exact demographics your brand is looking for.

“5. Instagram: Building out big brand offerings: 30 second cinematic video ads leave a big impression”

Similar to Facebook encouraging content hosting, Instagram is allowing video adverts and even short-form cinematic entertainment content.  Utilizing this new medium, several brands have seen a significant ROI.  Pedersen points to Michael Kors as one of the best examples.

“6. Cord cutting connects brands more intimately with consumers. I’m a cord-cutter, so this was especially interesting for me:”

As fewer and fewer people are subscribing to cable television due to high costs and lack of options, the trend is catching on with hardwired broadband Internet as well.  Many households are now becoming exclusively users of mobile devices.  Along with this shift comes the opportunity for higher-tech advertisements that engage the consumer, using methods such as interactive and real-time call-to-action videos.

Considering the much higher ad completion statistics Pedersen cites, these alternative media source have the potential to develop into innovative outlets for those marketers creative enough to embrace their full potential.

How do you see video playing a role in 2016’s social marketing?  Is your company in position to utilize the medium?  Join the discussion and let us know!

 

This article was written by Benjamin Williams and originally published on TraDove.com.

T&Th Discussions: Smart Cars in the Near Future?

We’re starting a new idea here at TraDove’s WordPress site: B2B discussion topics every Tuesday and Thursday.  Have an opinion or insight?  Please join in!  Like the topic for your own Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn discussion?  Feel free to share!

 

In Beijing, Chinese search giant Baidu is testing self-driving vehicles using laser guidance and the company’s own mapping systems. It hopes to release autonomous vehicles for public use within three years. Will internet mapping data make the difference in the self-driving auto industry?  Is 3 years too optimistic for such an industry?  

 

Keep to date with business trends at TraDove.com B2B social network.

T&Th Discussions: What to do with old content?

We’re starting a new idea here at TraDove’s WordPress site: B2B discussion topics every Tuesday and Thursday.  Have an opinion or insight?  Please join in!  Like the topic for your own Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn discussion?  Feel free to share!

For our first discussion;

When it comes to old content on your website, be it ads, articles, or blog posts, how do you approach them? Do you leave them be?  Delete irrelevant or outdated ones?  Update them to match your current style and content?

Keep to date with business trends at TraDove.com B2B social network.

The 3 C’s of customer satisfaction

It’s easy to find articles, white papers and books about hot, new business trends and ideas; people are intrigued by what’s said to be fresh thinking that may provide an edge (and writers want attention and sales).

As changes swirl around the world and affect buying and selling in ways good and bad, it’s ever more essential, McKinsey believes, to remember an essential, basic element of doing business: the need for consistency.

The point’s made clear from the title – The three Cs of customer satisfaction: Consistency, consistency, consistency – of a richly detailed paper published by the highly respected consulting firm.

Fair enough, the analytical review quickly notes, that different customers have vastly experiences with “everything from buying a product to actually using it, having issues with a product that require resolution, or simply making the decision to use a service or product for the first time.”

According to McKinsey, one of the world’s largest consulting firms, measuring overall satisfaction, what it calls customer journeys, is “30 percent more predictive of overall customer satisfaction than measuring happiness for each individual interaction.”

Of course, more satisfaction produces more revenue, and reduced expenses, according to the survey of 27,000 Americans and their interactions with 14 industries.

“Maximizing satisfaction with customer journeys has the potential not only to increase customer satisfaction by 20 percent but also to lift revenue by up to 15 percent while lowering the cost of serving customers by as much as 20 percent,” the article said.

Reminding customers of the consistently effective operations is important, as well, McKinsey believes.

“A company’s brand is driven by more than the combination of promises made and promises kept. What’s also critical is ensuring customers recognize the delivery of those promises, which requires proactively shaping communications and key messages that consistently highlight delivery.”

There’s a real need to make sure everything is in good order and ideally getting better, McKinsey says, because customers’ expectations have been getting higher.

“Our research indicates that since 2009, customers are valuing an “average” experience less and have even less patience for variability in delivery,” the report points out.

This article was written by Rob Hough and originally published on TraDove.com.

What You Need to Know About the New LinkedIn Groups

What You Need to Know About the New LinkedIn Groups

On 9 December, LinkedIn platform was named the most popular social network for content marketing by B2BNetworking.com, edging out competitors Twitter, Facebook, and others. And in truth, LinkedIn can prove a valuable tool for B2B content for no other reason than the professional audience that it provides. Luckily for us, it also gives other tools to work with.

Groups are one of these tools. Specific to an industry, company, or simply a common interest, these Groups give a common forum to discuss relevant topics. However, any LinkedIn users who participate in Groups likely noticed a large change in how they are accessed recently.

They invite us to check out the changes in this video, which neither displays nor explains anything new.

The Look

The original grid of all your Groups has been replaced with a blue-green banner, completely incongruous with the rest of the site’s design, featuring a drop-down menu of all your Groups in no particular order. This is accompanied by a “personalized selection of conversations from your groups” and the top 5 active groups.

Personally, I was more a fan of the grid list than having to scroll through all one-by-one. However, these are only the aesthetic changes. A number of functional changes have been made as well.

Privacy

The most prominent of these is the membership and searchability. Edging Groups more toward the private side, all groups are now automatically set to private and require new members to be admitted by a group administrator.

Building on this, administrators also have the option to make their Groups Unlisted. These Groups will not appear on internal search engines and require an invitation or direct link to access.

Due to these new privacy settings, external search engines will no longer index the contents of any Groups, closing off outside influences from the conversations and, as LinkedIn hopes, make “members feel more confident contributing in these types of groups.”

New Features

The option to add pictures to new discussion topics is a welcome change and one I have already noticed in use frequently. Two features that have been eliminated from Groups are Subgroups and posting wait times.

The second of these has the potential to make some ripples in how Groups may and may not be used by marketers. One of the largest complaints of the old Groups was the consistent amount of posts with zero engagement. Often this was due to nothing more than oversaturation and irrelevance.

This new zero wait time has the potential for Groups to be immediately flooded with spammy postings. However, author Bob Woods tells us not to worry on the subject, saying, “Don’t take the ‘lower bar’ statement as a license to spam or post lower-quality content, though. You will get busted by a Group owner/manager or a Group member.”

Woods continues, “At least now the standard for new people to join that particular Group is much, much higher. The opportunity to build your brand will be much better in this particular situation.”

The hope of LinkedIn is that the higher tiers of membership scrutiny will filter out these spammers and result in more relevant and engaging discussions. The Unlisted Groups that were previously Private, Woods explains, will now become prime mediums to build significant relationships within your Group’s field and conduct higher quality discussions and business.

iOS App

One final release came along with these changes; LinkedIn also released a companion LinkedIn Groups app. Though currently only available on iOS, it is promised to be released for Android devices soon. The LinkedIn Help Center post promises “You can follow conversations on the go with the new Groups mobile app . . . can receive push notifications for conversations in your groups so you stay updated. . .”

However, the response to this complementary app is not living up to the hopes LinkedIn had been touting with its release. In the App Store, it currently holds a meager score of 2 stars, with the highest review underwhelmingly stating “It’s just ok…..”

How these changes will improve LinkedIn’s narrow lead on Twitter for Content Marketers is something we will have to watch as we go into 2016.

This article was written by Benjamin Williams and originally published on TraDove.com.

Kids today: selling to Generation Y

Kids today: selling to Generation Y

What does a 26-year-old in Shanghai have in common with 26-year-olds in California, London and beyond? Those in Generation Y, people born between the early 1980s and 2000, share interests, choices and experiences that transcend borders and cultures – and have vast effects on global trade.

With the internet, efficient shipping and manufacturing, and relentless marketing efforts, this generation has always had a huge range of purchasing choices, lots of information and internet access to share their thoughts.

This presents opportunities and challenges for buyers and sellers, and there are fresh ideas about how to succeed in this environment, much as it can seem random and hopelessly complex.

Look at something as quick and easy as getting a beverage at a corner store. Even the little markets offer several kinds of water, iced teas, energy drinks, juices, soft drinks and alcoholic beverages from several different countries. Of course all those brands have websites and social media outlets to reach and communicate with people.

Whether it’s an inexpensive item anyone can buy in a small store, a smartphone or a car, the number of choices creates ferocious competition for customers’ cash.

Walmart is advertising its delivery services via social media, complete with discount offers on “the freshest fruits and vegetables.”

While studies have found that too many choices and too much information can be frustrating for older people, a recent study sponsored by Credit Suisse found that people in Generation Y want lots of alternatives and details as they look for value – good quality for their money, whether it’s a cold drink, a cabbage or a computer.

In taking that approach, those in Generation Y are quick to try new things, which means there’s less loyalty to brands, products and activities.

At the same time, this makes it easier to attract new customers – if you provide good quality at an attractive price, along with helpful, honest information – via social media or otherwise.

As one young person who took the survey – conducted by the University of Stockholm – said, when people in Generation Y find things they like, they’re quick to get the word out and “do the companies’ advertising for them.”

This article was written by Rob Hough and originally published on Tradove.com.