The Necessity of Tailoring a Message for Various Social Media Platforms

How can businesses successfully target online and social media users through digital marketing? It starts with knowing the audience, and how it differs according to what online platform you’re reaching them on.

In our marketing team competition, we noticed a wide variety of engagement levels and responses based on how we presented our content. Below are our discoveries, which provide some insight on how to target users on various platforms.

Twitter & Instagram

The social media meccas for millennials. When posting content to these social media platforms, it’s important to realize that these audiences are looking for relatable posts or products, and not a jargon-laden or cookie cutter advertisement. Influencers on these platforms find success by showing their personality and being real with their followers. When our team posted content on these platforms, it was essential to write captions in a personal tone, add interesting text and visual appeal, and use highly searched hashtags to draw interest from people other than current followers.

We also discovered that specifically, Twitter is a difficult platform to post business related content on. Twitter seems to lend itself to allowing users to showcase their personality (i.e. Wendy’s and Netflix humorous and witty content) rather than promote specific products. Instead, Twitter better serves to deepen connections with users. Leave product and service promotion to LinkedIn and Facebook, where users aren’t looking for the same level of personality to be showcased.

Facebook

With about two billion users, Facebook is a social medial platform that is hard to ignore. While our team’s initial content sparked views solely based on our “inner circles” of friends, moving beyond this group to a more general audience proved more difficult. Additionally, many readers didn’t spend as much time reading business related articles as they did sharing memes. Facebook does have business-related groups and product pages that allow for interaction with users. These groups seem to be an ideal place to post our content, but it was difficult to find success with this strategy, as posts need to be created specifically for different types of groups.

As with Twitter and Instagram, Facebook users look for a personal touch to shine through in posted content. By quickly responding to users who comment on posts, our team could build engagement and nurture additional interactions, which is highly valued on this platform.

LinkedIn

Business related content is best positioned on LinkedIn, as users navigate there to actively seek out useful professional material. LinkedIn’s versatility is evident through the various forms of material that can be posted, from written posts to videos, which are known to significantly increase user engagement and brand awareness. One feature in particular that makes LinkedIn an ideal marketing platform for business content is the Groups feature, a hub that serves as a place to search business related content, post and view jobs, find answers to relevant topics, establish business contacts, and where users can establish themselves as industry experts. This platform serves as a crucial medium for businesses to engage professionals for a variety of purposes, serving as a highly effective marketing tool. On LinkedIn, posts were more successful if they took a professional tone, used hashtags, and mentioned specific companies, as seen below. This drew attention from professionals in the industry, increasing post interactions.

Email Marketing

With the popularity and growth of social media platforms providing access to millions, or in Facebook’s case billions, of users where segmentation and targeting is easier than ever, it’s not hard to forget about email marketing.

While email may not be the shiny new platform or network, it is our opinion if the campaign is well crafted, email remains one of the most effective tools for a wide variety of content. Based on our experience, email marketing works especially well for content with potentially valuable insight or where opportunities are shared. This information can come in many different forms, but common examples are newsletters, offers and promotions, and renewals. Often these messages can feel more personal, as if that letter, offer, or reminder is being shared just with the receiver, and not a larger audience.

More importantly though is having the right permissions, design, and call to action. Once you as a marketer have the necessary permissions you can run A/B tests on your design and call to action to refine your message, and analytics will provide insight into the engagement and quality of the message, making email marketing a still relevant tool for marketers in a social media world.

Final Thoughts

Given the number of platforms and the differences in each, to be successful in the digital media space, marketers must know their audience and consider where and how content will be shared. While many of the social media platforms share users, where we choose to connect with users can change their willingness to engage. For example, an individual that is receptive to a listicle via email, LinkedIn, and Facebook, may not be as interested in the same content on Instagram or Twitter. Furthermore, how the content is shared must also adapt to the platform. Each channel has its limitations and strengths when sharing content. Make sure to play to the strengths of the channel or platform to generate intrigue with your audience. In summary, define the audience you are trying to target, determine where they will be most receptive to the content, and shape that content to the platform being used to reach the audience.

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Charity Miles App Review: Good for Runners, Companies, & the Community

 

Pizza Anyone? Ok Google, talk to Domino’s!

With the growth in digital marketing and the impact of social media on everyday life, today’s businesses need to keep pace with the ever changing influence of technology if they want to expand their product sales. Pizza is no exception and Domino’s has strategically invested in this space as they saw the opportunity to increase sales via digital channels.

Some of us remember the days of calling the pizza place, being put on hold, providing your order, sometimes twice – the same one you normally put in once a week – repeating your address another two times and finally confirming the price and the estimated 30 minute delivery time. An hour later, you’re calling the pizza place again for an update on when that delivery is going to show up.

Domino’s solved this problem by allowing customers to save their address, payment info and their Easy Order under their enhanced online ordering platform. The Easy Order was a bundle of information including payment, address, delivery or carry-out order type and preferred store location. The days of agonizing phone orders were gone as customers could reference their pizza profile and place an order in a handful of clicks or within 30 seconds. This was soon followed by the Domino’s Tracker that gave you visibility to where your order was in the overall process.

This groundwork was the foundation for Domino’s AnyWare which was an expanded suite of ordering technology focused on getting more people to order online via the devices and platforms that they use everyday.

Over the last three years, we have seen an increase in innovative options for ordering Domino’s pizza which include:

  • Talking to Dom, an order-taking expert living in the Domino’s app, for those that still want to hear a voice on the other end
  • Sending a pizza emoji via text message
  • Tweeting #EasyOrder to @Dominos
  • Using the Domino’s app on your Samsung Smart TV to place and track an order without missing your favorite show
  • Opening the Domino’s Zero Click app and your Easy Order is placed in 10 seconds
  • Talking to your Google Home or Amazon Alexa devices to place your order
  • Ordering via Facebook Messenger
  • Leveraging Slack to place an order for the team
  • Ordering from your car if you have a Ford with SYNC® AppLink
  • Turning over your wrist and placing that order via your smart watch

The focus on technology and connecting with customers’ daily routines has allowed Domino’s to generate over half of its sales via digital channels and stay ahead of the competition. It has definitely piqued my interest and I look forward to continuing to test out the various options for ordering my pizza.

By now you must be hungry, so why not give it shot and try one of the various options to order a pizza. While you wait for your delivery, click below for our other blog posts.

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Charity Miles App Review: Good for Runners, Companies, & the Community

As a runner and a not-for-profit professional, I thought that the Charity Miles App seemed too good to be true. I quickly realized that it was an innovative platform that lived up to its mission. 

How it Works

By downloading the Charity Miles App, individuals can track their running, walking, or biking activity and convert mileage into donations to their favorite charities. The app allows for individuals to choose from over 40 charities, which will receive $0.25 per mile run or walked, and $0.10 per mile biked. Individuals select their activity type, enable location services for the app to track activity, and start their workout. When finished, it’s as simple as clicking the finish button, which leads to a workout summary which includes mileage, activity time, and the amount donated to charity. Users can even take a photo of their workout, which will generate an image to promote the apps and activity through social media.

The Positives

  1. Easy to use: it only took a couple of minutes to create a user profile and figure out how to log miles.
  2. It’s a win-win-win: everyone benefits- users, who get to contribute to social causes, companies who get high-impact advertising space, and charities, who receive money from every mile logged.

The Negatives

  1. Lack of functionality: The app won’t be replacing your GPS watch anytime soon. Mileage wasn’t incredibly accurate, and I was unable to pause my activity when at a stoplight.
  2. Missed promotional opportunities: If you plan to share your activity mileage via social media, you can only so right after you’ve finished the activity. This removes opportunities for users to advertise the app and it’s sponsors.

An Innovative Digital Marketing Medium for Companies

Charity Miles touts the ability for sponsors to maintain a captive audience due to the structure of the app/sponsor/user setup. By sponsoring the app, companies can advertise their charitable giving through the agreement to donate $X per each mile logged in the app. Companies can expose app users to a variety of sponsored content, including blog posts, product discounts, and free trials. This structure melds corporate giving and advertising, as sponsorships fund the donations.

Will I Continue Using Charity Miles?

In short, yes. The app is easy to use and is a low commitment option in giving to social causes. As long as you can get past the amount of sponsored content (hey, they are donating money on your behalf) I recommend that you try it on your next walk, run, or bike ride too.

 

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The Necessity of Tailoring a Message for Various Social Media Platforms

Gen Z: Why Social Marketing is Going to Be Even More Important

Move over Baby Boomers and Millennials because a new generation – Gen Z – is taking over the world. But seriously. Never heard of Gen Z? Well, they’re the generation born between 1996 and 2010 and currently are ages 7 to 21 years old. They’ve never known a pre-9/11 America. They’ve never known what it’s like to not have Internet. They may not even know how to use a phone book – or maybe that a phone book isn’t the contacts list on their iPhones.

The U.S. Gen Z population is 63 million strong and growing due to immigration. Gen Z is expected to influence 60% of U.S. revenue by 2025. Although this may seem significant, we should really be looking at China.

In China, Gen Z includes for 247 million children and young adults. And China’s Gen Z is going to a whopping 16% of total global income. That said, this generation has a lot of power, and they don’t even yet have university degrees. So, what makes Gen Z unique? We found four traits that should make organizations think twice about their long-term marketing plans.

  1. Their operating system is technology.

Gen Z-ers are always connected. An electronic device must be in their hand at all times – whether it’s a mobile phone, tablet, or laptop. The more mobile the better as they’re always on the go, but maintain connected. They spend at least 9 hours per day digitally engaged – whether in school or at home. This time is spent gaming, browsing, socializing (such as Instagram and GroupMe), listening to music (think iTunes or Spotify), watching TV (think Netflix or YouTube). Some also spend time creating their owndigital content (such as musical.ly). Additionally, they only use a few apps on their phone.

  1. They are more diverse than ever before.

In the U.S., the majority of Gen Z are non-white as a result of immigration. It is likely that a Gen Z kid has a mom who’s Indonesian and a dad who’s Irish. The kid is interested in not just one activity, but multiple. They don’t just see themselves as a dancer, a chemist, or musician. They have their hands in many cookie jars, so to speak, which makes them feel fulfilled and creative. It’s also likely they will pursue multiple divergent degrees such as biochemistry and theater.

When it comes to marriage, 66% back marriage equality, research firm 747 Insights confirms, and only 80% are currently interested in getting marriage. They’ll follow the path of millennials by not following traditional ideals such as getting married and having multiple kids before the age of 30. Gen Z seems to be the most independent of all generations and seek multiple experiences – such as dating and traveling – before tying the knot with a significant other.

  1. They’re more authentic and care deeply.

This generation seeks to purchase goods and services from brands that “do good” for the world and their communities. They’ve grown up in the war on terror and multiple wars such as Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. They care even more about social justice issues than millennials, who tend to focus on globalization issues and social responsibility.

Gen Z-ers will fight for themselves, their loves ones, their friends, and others if they see them treated unfairly due to gender, sexuality, race, pay, and environmental issues – just to name a few. This generation wants to be a change agent and truly believe they can make a positive impact. They can use their digital savviness and self-assured mindsets to influence via social media channels such as YouTube, Instagram, and Kickstarter.

Technology allows this generation to influence at a global scale virtually, rather than traveling around the world. They are able to create their own personal brands and form their online communities, which have very low barriers to entry. There are no boundaries, rules, or fees (only to the extent of what their content channels allow, of course).

  1. They value relationships over transactions.

Gen Z seeks a personalized shopping experience. As discussed above, they believe brands play an important role in society and are responsible for making it better. Just as this generation create its own content online and inspires others, they expect the same in return from brands they purchase from. They’re also likely promote a brand (particularly online) as a result of a positive customer experience. About half of all Gen Z purchases include a digital element – either through their product search or actual purchase. They are likely to use online product reviews from people they follow and trust online – especially celebrities. They are also likely to participate more in member-only events and loyalty programs that reward them for frequent purchasing.

If you thought Amazon was just a fad, think again. Online shopping is here to stay and grow, funded by Generation Z. Brands should pay special attention to this generation’s purchase patterns as they continue to grow older and become a larger part of our global economy.

7 Reasons to use Poodles for Marketing

Everyone is looking for the best way to appeal to the perfect audience for their products.  Kick you marketing campaign into high gear with Poodles! Here are 7 reasons to use a poodle to drive your internet traffic.

1.  Perceived Wealth:  Poodles have been used as status symbol by the wealthy for generations due to their elegant features and elite intelligence. Use them to increase the perceived value of your product.

2. Emotional Appeal: Dog Food Marketing is the term used when users of the product are not the decision makers. Using poodles for advertising your products appeals to those decision makers emotional instincts with a relatable hook.

3. Play up the Stakes: Poodles are one of the smartest dog breeds and can be trained to do just about anything.  Draw in your target audience with poodles in offbeat action too wild for anyone to forget!

4. Diversity: Poodles come in all sizes & colors and are equally loved by diverse communities around the world. Build brand loyalty with your favorite groups. Poodle pride!

5. Ruffle some Feathers: Poodles can be easily tailored to bring out undeniable sassy attitudes unlike any other dog breed.  Throw shade at your competition by humiliating them. Complaining will only turn your audience away so turn up the heat by throwing in some laughter at their expense.

6. Feminism: Poodles have a lot of feminine appeal…Establish better engagement with your female clientele by demonstrating all that female power. Just don’t take it too far, otherwise you might creep them out.

7. Masculinity: Poodles are hunting dogs.  Use them to highlight the masculinity and agility of your product (Warning: Graphic content from real hunting scenes!).

 Just put a poodle on it!

Free Social Media Tools to Try in 2018

As we covered in Just Because You’re a Millennial Doesn’t Mean You’re a Social Media Wizard,  social media is ever changing and so are the tools we use to express ourselves. Here are some outstanding free tools that set your social media presence to the next level.

Crello

Usage: Create new images for your web and social media presence. It has thousands of templates and millions of images to choose from.

Features: Animate designs with Crello for free. Whether you have a design team or not, faster is better.

Fastory

Usage: This is an editing tool to create stories on Instagram and Snapchat, allowing you to add text and upload videos. You can make stories in advance, email them to yourself, and post them when it’s convenient for you.

Features: Keeping a publishing schedule is a challenge. I like this tool to prep stories in advance.

Botletter

Usage: Are you sending blogs and newsletters on Facebook Messenger? Are you running a campaign with a strong Facebook presence? Now you can send up to 1000 messages a month for free.

Features: Like many new marketing tools, you can track and review your performance in the same place.

For additional reading, check out:

Digital Marketing Tips for Digital Natives

Gifs and Memes: The New Art of Marketing

 

 

Are you making any of these marketing mistakes?

1. Failure to Create a Strategy with Measurable Goals

 

 

 

 

 

 

In digital marketing, a well-defined strategy is not only the key to establishing a strong direction, but it is also the impetus for aligning valuable content with a target audience. If a digital marketing strategy is missing, both the customers and employees of the organization will not understand the intent of the digital marketing message. Thus, the purpose and value would be lost. Therefore, it is imperative that an organization creates and refines their digital marketing strategies and goals to help them reach their target audience, measure their results, achieve organizational growth and remain competitive in the market.

2. Targeting the Wrong Audience

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When starting a new company one of the most important things that are going to determine whether you make it or not is how you will market your product to the consumer, and who you target.  If you target the wrong consumer segment, it could destroy your company because consumers will not be attracted to your product.  If you target the right consumer, your company could be the next Coca-Cola or Disney.

3. Not Having a User Friendly Website

 

 

 

 

Did you know that having a website that an unfriendly website design will not only reduce traffic to the website, but it also results in a negative perception of the brand? It is true. So, what does it mean to create a “user-friendly” website? For a website to be user-friendly, it must have a minimum of the following 3 key features:
    1. Speed: Customers expect web pages to load in 3 seconds or less. If the response rate is slower than 3 seconds, the customer may click away from the site.
    2. Design: The design of the website must be intuitive and easy navigated by someone who is new to the site.
    3. Mobile Compatibility: The website must be compatible with mobile devices.

4. Marketing Across Too Many Social Platforms

 

 

 

 

 

 

Specific targeted marketing audiences likely don’t spend time on every social platform.  Allocating your resources to the right platform is therefore critical to ensuring your marketing efforts aren’t spread too thin.  Start by studying and understanding which social platforms are primarily used by your audience and target the message to the three of four platforms that most closely align with the audience.  Keep it narrow and focused for optimal results.

5. Ignoring Negative Feedback

Business on social media helps connect business directly with customers. A business can expect positive or negative comments. All positive and negative feedback is visible to the public.  Avoid the temptation  to delete or ignore the comments.  Business should address the negative feedback as quickly as possible. Customers will follow the company’s response and judge how quickly  and effectively they respond. Customers will search for feedback prior to purchase. Social ratings are available in Google review. A company can turn a complaint into a positive experience.

6. Not Leveraging Your Data

 

 

Effective marketing campaign managers measure performance through data, research, analysis and other performance tools.  Social media marketing requires a similar attention to the data to drive improved results.  Social marketers can improve their performance by leveraging Google Analytics or the tools provided by the social media platform.  Leverage the data to drive improved results.

Facebook vs Linkedin, Who Will Do it Better?

Original Article: You Might Find Your Next Employee (or Job) on Facebook

Facebook is making its creepily comprehensive knowledge of its users available to employers looking to hire help.

Original Contributor: Lesya Liu

Businesses in the U.S. and Canada will now be able to post job openings and review applications on Facebook. Users who are considered to be a good fit by Facebook will see the job listing in their newsfeed. Apparently, Facebook is trying to compete with Linkedin in the job search market using their huge daily user base, but here comes the question; Is Facebook really capable of doing that?

“You might lose a chance at a job before you even get your chance”
Given the nature of the personal interactions between Facebook users and their posting behaviors, the article argues that applicants would lose their chances in jobs at the early stages because of their posts, interests, and images on their profiles, but this could be a double-edged sword because the firms can match applicants with their organizational culture based on their posting behavior. This would save both sides a lot of time and effort during the hiring process and give applicants another strength by showing who they really are!  
Image result for facebook new job post

“Facebook beats specialty networks in their games”
The article argues that Facebook is trying to beat LinkedIn as a professional platform, however, LinkedIn interaction’s dynamics are different than Facebook’s. LinkedIn targets professionals with high levels of education. On the other hand, Facebook depends on the personal relations between users that would lead to a bigger pool for part-time jobs and low-level opportunities.



“Put paying customers in the driving seat”
Although Facebook has 60 million business pages, only 4 million are actively advertising. The author, Lesya, argues that the new job search attempt is just a way for Facebook to increase its advertising revenue by attracting the small businesses. However, Facebook is trying to overcome the fact that its organic reach is almost gone. Therefore, Facebook is making use of the job listings by letting the businesses pay to promote their openings and drive more traffic to the platform.

Image result for Put paying customers in the driving seat