Tag Archives: sales management

Facebook Friends Share; Pinterest People Purchase

9 六月

Pinterest users are 79 percent more likely to purchase items they see pinned on the site compared to the purchasing behavior of Facebook users viewing items they’ve seen on the news feed or a friend’s wall, according to a new survey released from behavioral commerce company SteelHouse.

Thirty-three percent of Facebook users said they have purchased a product or service that they’ve seen in a Facebook ad, on the news feed or on a friend’s wall, compared to 59 percent of Pinterest users who have made a purchase based on an item they saw on the pinboarding site. However, Facebook remains consumers’ top choice for getting ideas on what products or services to purchase, according to the survey, and is also the preferred choice for social product sharing. More than one half of those surveyed said they regularly share their online purchases.

Fifty-five percent of shoppers prefer to share their purchases on Facebook, followed by Twitter (22 percent), Pinterest (14 percent), and Instagram (5 percent). LinkedIn bottomed the list with only 3 percent of respondents using it to socially share purchases.

When asked about mobile shopping, 43 percent of those surveyed said they have downloaded a retailer’s mobile app and primarily use the app to browse for items (32 percent), make purchases (22 percent), and earn discounts and deals (26 percent). When making purchases, though, close to one third of respondents said they prefer to make purchases from a retailer’s online store versus that retailer’s mobile app.

In addition to getting more social and mobile with shopping, 98 percent of shoppers say that online customer reviews have a major influence on their decision to purchase a product or service. Seventy-two percent of consumers said that they always read reviews before making a purchase, while 26 percent of consumers only sometimes read reviews before purchasing.

By: http://www.websitemagazine.com/content/blogs/posts/archive/2012/05/30/facebook-users-share-products-pinterest-users-purchase.aspx?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter

When reading product reviews, 83 percent of shoppers take both the star rating and written comments into consideration. Star ratings are particularly important, as half of all respondents said the lowest star rating they would accept when making a purchase is three stars on a five-star scale.

Beyond just checking out reviews, many respondents said they also write reviews. Sixty-eight percent of shoppers say they rate and review products on a regular basis. The top product categories they write reviews on are electronics (23 percent), DVDs/CDs/MP3s (14 percent), books and clothing (both 13 percent).

10 Ways to Boost Sales on Your Ecommerce Website

9 六月

It’s fairly simple now to become an online entrepreneur, thanks to technology and social media. Making a profit, on the other hand, is not always simple. There are small details that could greatly affect how your business thrives on the Internet — you can’t just put up an ecommerce portal and expect customers to come rolling in.

Building the smartest (and most successful) business website requires a lot of consideration. Online retailers must balance web design and development with marketing practices to successfully drive sales.

To add to the balancing act, your website and business will benefit when you consider what your customer wants and needs. Most are looking for a simple, straightforward shopping experience. Think about it — when is the last time you felt that way in a mall? There’s a reason shoppers are flocking to the web for their commerce needs — everything is tailored to them.

We’ve gathered a few tips for a successful ecommerce platform in the gallery below, some of which were suggested by Sucharita Mulpurur, an analyst at Forrester, and Ben Zifkin, CEO of Hubba.

Whether you’re a small business owner or an online shopper — as a customer, what features do you appreciate when you’re purchasing something on the web? Share your thoughts in the comments.

5 Tips for Moving Social Media Leads Into the Sales Funnel

27 三月

Do Fans Mean Business?

Marketers have made tremendous strides in growing their audiences on social media channels. There have been concerns over whether social media could only be successful in business-to-consumer (B2C) companies, but we’re starting to see great case studies in both business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) brands.

In looking at the B2B software space, we can see tremendous success from companies like HubSpot, InfusionSoft and HootSuite that have grown large numbers of followers by providing valuable content to their target audiences.

In the B2C space, our passion for brands like Old Spice, Coca-Cola and Ford have been reignited by creative social media campaigns. But what now?

Have these large followings contributed to revenue for these brands? The next natural question for C-level executives and marketers is, “Can we monetize our social media following?”

As pressures have risen for solid measurements and a demonstration of social media ROI, more companies are recognizing that revenue generation has to be a top priority of social media strategies.

This doesn’t give license for tacky sales pitches on Twitter. Rather, it opens the door for a more strategic approach to social media content, content distribution and measurement.

To get started, there are a few things you’ll need to prepare for.

Tip #1: Understand Your Sales Funnel

It’s pretty difficult to place leads into the sales funnel if you don’t have a clear understanding of the sales process that supports it.

The first step in monetizing the social media channel is to have a clear understanding of which marketing channels are currently contributing leads to the funnel, what the sales follow-up process is and how long it takes to close the sale.

You’ll need to figure out where social media fits into the equation.

  • Will social media leads respond to existing sales processes?
  • Where are social media leads in the buying process?
  • Will they convert at the same rates?

To truly understand how social media leads behave, you’ll need to do some testing. It is unlikely that social media leads will perform the same way that other types of marketing leads do.

This is because with social media, more commonly you are reaching potential buyers earlier in the sales process, before your competition. Getting potential buyers’ attention early has tremendous value that can be overlooked if expectations haven’t been set for how the social media lead will perform.

If you compare social media with traditional sales, in essence social media adds three levels that extend your sales funnel to provide more opportunities for conversion.

funnel with goals

Social media adds three levels of brand awareness to the sales funnel, providing more opportunities to convert prospects.

Tip #2: Optimize Your Path to Conversion

It’s important to make sure it is super-easy for potential buyers to buy. We tend to be fairly lazy consumers and if we have to search out how to buy from you, we are less likely to convert.

Therefore, take a look at your Facebook page. Does a potential buyer have to click on the Info tab to find your website, then go to your website and figure out how to buy your products or services? If so, you are likely missing out on the opportunity to convert Facebook fans into purchasers.

Create a tab that allows fans to convert within Facebook and you’ll likely see a spike in new revenue.

Success in social media relies on having strong content to share on social networks, which many times resides on the corporate blog.

Look at your blog and make sure there are conversion points that will in essence turn every post into a landing page. Make sure you test multiple calls to action to figure out what works best at converting social media traffic.

funnel graphics

Understand the path to conversion from social media so you can optimize each step.

Tip #3: Provide Opportunities for Soft Conversion

The social media lead likely enters the sales funnel earlier in the buying process. He or she may not be ready to make a purchase; however, you have an opportunity to convert interested social media fans and followers into email subscribers.

Soft leads are people willing to provide their email address in exchange for highly valuable and relevant content. These are valuable leads who have said they are interested in your content; but they haven’t necessarily said they are interested in your product yet.

If you combine email marketing campaigns that provide a mix of content that helps to push them through the sales funnel while providing valuable information, you will have a better opportunity to convert social media’s soft leads into potential buyers.

Tip #4: Nurture the Social Media Lead Differently

It’s important to understand the difference between the social media lead and the traditional lead because traditional sales-related email campaigns will kill the sale with the social media buyer.

Because social media leads may enter the sales funnel at an earlier stage in the buying process, you will need to adjust your email campaigns to provide value and content that will help drive the decision-making process.

This will require a strategy that includes decision-making content. Decision-making content is designed to answer questions that commonly arise when purchasing your product, overcome objections that are frequently heard in the sales process and provide opportunities to convert into a hard lead.

A hard lead is someone who has taken an action that directly indicates he or she is now interested in your product. This means the lead is now in the research and consideration phase of the buying cycle and you have an opportunity to convert the lead into a buyer.

Through your other social media efforts, you have been able to develop trust with prospects; therefore, if you continue to show thought leadership in helping them to make a decision, they will be more likely to purchase from you rather than the competitor they don’t have a relationship with.

Having a combination of decision-making and topically relevant content that is sent to soft leads will help you identify when the lead makes the jump to product interest.

At that point, you can follow up with traditional product-based information and put the lead in the traditional sales processMany times you can recognize this transition if you identify pages and calls to action that indicate product interest, such as signing up for a product demonstration, attending a product-based webinar or downloading decision-making content.

Tip #5: Measure Your Results

Finally, the only way to identify where leads are in the sales process is to measure your efforts.

The quickest and most cost-effective way to monitor social media conversions is to apply Google analytics campaign tracking to the links you shorten and post on social networks.

The combination of Google Analytics and HootSuite Pro makes this easy. Once you have the data, it is important to put it into a format that tells the management team what they want to know.

Use these metrics to demonstrate success through the sales funnel:

  • Cost per impression
  • Cost per engagement
  • Cost per soft lead
  • Cost per hard lead
  • Cost per sale

BY: http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/5-tips-for-moving-social-media-leads-into-the-sales-funnel/

INFOGRAPHIC: How To Train Employees In Social Media So That They Don’t Ruin Your Reputation

24 三月

social media training mindflash

By: http://www.businessinsider.com/infographic-how-to-train-employees-in-social-media-so-that-they-dont-screw-everything-up-2012-3

Facebook Launches ‘Facebook Offers’ For Businesses

9 三月

A few select brands on Facebook are currently running tests of a new Facebook product for businesses called “Offers.” The most recent Offer, which generated a fair amount of buzz in the past week, was posted by Macy’s. Macy’s first posted the Offer on Thursday, February 23rd at 7:11am Pacific with an expiration date of February 26th. The Offer was: “Get 25% off your purchase of $100 or more.

The Offer jumped out at me in my News Feed last Thursday when a friend of mine (plus six others!) claimed the Offer. Then I saw the Offer repeatedly in my News Feed, so clicked through to Macy’s to check it out on their wall too.

Facebook Offers - Marsh Engle Claimed Macy's

Simple, one-click claim – INCLUDING on mobile!

What’s super exciting about this new Facebook product for businesses, is the absolute simplicity and ease with which users can claim the Offer. Literally ONE click and Facebook lets you know the Offer is in your email inbox!

Facebook Offers - One Click Claim

Users can claim the Offer from the wall of the brand’s fan page.

Or, users can claim the Offer from their News Feed. Including MOBILE. Hello? Yes, mobile. Now that is thrilling.

More than half of Facebook’s 845 Million active users access the site via their mobile devices. Imagine the possibilities of Offers for your business! For local businesses. Wow. I haven’t been this excited about a new Facebook product since…. well, since last September when Subscribe came out. ;)

On that note, feel free to Subscribe to my Timeline public updates! Click the button below:

//www.facebook.com/plugins/subscribe.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fmaris&layout=standard&show_faces=true&colorscheme=light&font=arial&width=450&appId=102079246572280

Einstein Bros Bagels Offer

By way of example on how super easy it is to claim an Offer on mobile, check out this recent Offer by Einstein Bros Bagels (claimed over 25,000 times so far!). I didn’t see this in my News Feed, per se. I just pulled up Einstein Bros Bagels on my iPhone and did the uber easy one-click claim:

Einstein Bros Bagles - Facebook Offer

And after the one-click (or one-touch, really, on iPhone!):

Einstein Bros Bagels - Facebook Offer Claimed

Credit to AK Stout and this post on SayingItSocial.com where a commenter pointed out the Einstein Bros Bagels offer.

Redeem by email, share from email

Not only can users easily claim the offer from their News Feed – on any computer or mobile device – the actual offer can be redeemed simply by showing the coupon on your phone to Macy’s staff. See the email below:

Facebook Offers - Claim Email

And, notice the big “Share Offer” button in the email. LOVE that. Boom – one-click claim. Instant gratification. And another one-click to share with friends!

Key takeaways from Macy’s Offer

Some points to note about Macy’s offer:

  • The offer was clean, simple, obvious and used a “%” sign and a “$dollar” amount.
  • Macy’s chose an extremely eye-catching image of a red shoe and a blue shoe on a white background, clearly chosen very strategically (red, white and blue = power color combo!). Plus, the fact it’s shoes – I don’t know any female out there who doesn’t love shoes. (Of course, many men claimed the Offer too!)
  • The choice of verbiage in the Offer was compelling: starting with “Get” (mirrored with the “Get Offer”), and the use of “save” and “BIG.” Clever!
  • Macy’s first posted the Offer on February 23rd, and posted it again on February 25th (Saturday morning at 7am Pacific) with the the description “Just two days left to get a head start on spring shopping!” (Einstein Bros Bagels did the same repeating of the Offer on its fan page wall, which of course goes into the fans’ News Feed again).

  • Ultimately, 41,602 people claimed the Macy’s Offer. And the original Offer post was shared a total of 2,491 times and the reminder of the Offer shared 374 times. Awesome social proof!

See also Build-A-Bear Workshop‘s Facebook page for this Offer. (Credit to AK Stout for spotting it).

Will Facebook unveil Offers at the FMC today? [Update: Yes!]

Congrats, Facebook. I do believe you’ve found simplicity on the other side of complexity with this new Offers product.

Will Offers be one of the BIG new product launches announced at the Facebook Marketing Conference today? Rumor has it Facebook is unveiling a whopping 7 new changes/products/upgrades. We know that one will be Timeline for Pages. Another is new Premium Ads. And a third surely has to be these Offers—well, in fact I understand that Offers is part of the new Premium Ads product. [Update: turns out Offers are a standalone product and appear to be FREE to create and share! Select Pages only, so far.] And, I heard last Friday from a reliable source that currently only around 25 big brands even know about Offers. Hm, still, I sure hope the product is imminent for the rest of us.

Stay tuned for more. I’ll be watching the Livestream of the FMC and tweeting and posting my thoughts on my Facebook page and profile.

By: http://www.marismith.com/facebook-offers/

Facebook May Release New Premium Ad Product Feb. 29

9 三月

Facebook may announce a complete overhaul of its premium ads at next Wednesday’s invitation-only Facebook Marketing Conference in New York.

February 29 is shaping up to be a monster day for Facebook, as the social network will also reportedly announce the beginning of beta-testing of timeline for businesses, also at its FMC event.

The information below, as well as the screen shots, comes from leaked documents obtained by Peter Corbett, chief executive officer of social agency iStrategyLabs, and posted by GigaOM.

According to the documents, the following ad types will be phased out at the end of this month:

  • Premium like, photo and video;
  • Premium event, photo and video;
  • Video comment; and
  • Premium poll, photo and video.

Premium standard ads (links to destination off Facebook, photo and video) will still be available, as will marketplace ads, which are not affected since they are not considered part of the homepage.

The leaked document outlined the six types of premium ads that will be available as of the end of February:

  • Status updates: Up to 150 characters of text, no additional media;
  • Photos: Up to 90 characters of text, 185-pixel-by-104-pixel thumbnail, 16:9 aspect ratio (we previously reported the reduction from 135 characters to 90);
  • Videos: Up to 90 characters of text, 185-pixel-by-104-pixel thumbnail, 16:9 aspect ratio;
  • Links: Up to 90 characters of text, 75-pixel-by-75-pixel thumbnail;
  • Questions: Four answers will be displayed — three, plus a “see more” link; and
  • Events: Up to 90 characters of text, 75-pixel-by-75-pixel thumbnail.

The leaked documents say that the social network will offer the same analytics reporting options as it does with its current classic and premium ads. However, the revamped premium ads will only accommodate impression tags, and not click tags for third-party tracking.

The documents also say that Facebook’s team will provide advertisers with specific instructions based on their needs for each campaign.

The introduction of the new premium ads reads:

The ad is created from the content of your page post. Anything you can post on your page, you can turn into an ad.

When the person seeing your ad has friends who are fans of your page, we’ll automatically expand the ad with enhanced social context about those friends, at no extra cost to you.

When fans see your ad, they’ll see an expanded interface below the ad that lets them like or comment on the post directly from the ad.

And the documents’ concluding pitch is as follows:

At Facebook, we believe that businesses will be better in a connected world. We connect 800 million people and their friends to the things they care about. Your page is the place where your business connects with people, and premium ads and featured stories help you reach those people, and their friends, more often.

Premium Ads are more effective when they start from page posts. These ads put your page’s voice on the homepage, in front of your ideal audience. For your fans and their friends, it will expand to show how friends are connected to your brand alongside your message, all in one. This social context appears at no additional cost to you.

Premium Ads with enhanced social context are 80 percent more likely to be remembered, driving 40 percent higher engagement and a significant increase in purchase intent.

Facebook Premium Ads Overviewhttp://www.scribd.com/embeds/82289675/content?start_page=1&view_mode=list

By: http://www.allfacebook.com/premium-ads-facebook-2012-02

Payvment Launches Social IQ for Facebook Sellers

9 三月

Facebook e-commerce platform Payvment has introduced a new tool that guides sellers towards the optimal social media activities to boost sales and engagement in their Facebook stores.

Based on analysis of over two years of data from thousands of successful sellers, Payvment Social IQ technology delivers a daily set of customized actions to help sellers who are new to social commerce drive fan-base growth, traffic and sales. The technology is embedded in a new release of Payvment’s Social Commerce Dashboard, which has an added set of tools to monitor key social commerce metrics and track the impact of new campaigns.

Payvment’s Social IQ is also designed to make it easy for sellers to try new social marketing tactics such as running a Twitter promotion or offering a “Like” discount for fans, while being able to measure exactly how those actions improve product discovery and sales.

Key features of Social IQ include the following:

Things You Did: Tallies the deals, promotions and polls a seller has run in the past week
Shopper Reactions: Shows how shoppers engaged based on the social actions
Your Bottom Line: Tallies Fans, product views and revenue earned based on social activity, while showing whether those totals are trending up or down over time
Social IQ Booster: Suggests simple ways to grow your Social IQ score and increase engagement and sales
Social IQ Leaderboard: Shows the other sellers who are most active and socially engaged with shoppers and how they compare

Visit Payvment’s Seller Spotlight section for profiles of merchants who have achieved success with Facebook commerce.

By: http://www.websitemagazine.com/content/blogs/posts/archive/2012/02/27/payvment-launches-social-iq-for-facebook-sellers.aspx?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter

Pinterest Optimization for Internet Retailers

29 二月

Virtual pinboard Pinterest is the hottest thing on the Web right now. That means that it deserves the attention of merchants and marketers as well as the millions of users who have made it one of the fastest-growing websites in history.

Some of the most recent numbers indicate that Pinterest currently drives more referral traffic than YouTube, Google+ and LinkedIn combined, and that 9 percent of the top 300 online retailers are offering “Pin it” buttons on their own sites. That’s compared to about 60 percent who have Facebook Like buttons and 20 percent who have Google+ buttons – and Pinterest was a relatively unknown commodity until just recently.

The point is that an enormous opportunity awaits e-commerce merchants who understand how to leverage the popularity of Pinterest by utilizing the service itself as well as the rising number of ancillary tools. Here are some tips on how to do exactly that:

Get initiated
If you’re still unsure of what all the buzz is about, here’s a quick review of what Pinterest is, followed by how it can generate revenue for Web retailers. It is a social “pinboarding” site on which users share images with one another by “pinning” them onto their “boards”. Users can create multiple boards and give them specific themes, and other users can follow the boards in which they are most interested, sharing their favorite pins with still others by “repinning” them, liking them and adding comments.

The actual images or pins on each board can link back to a retailer’s online store, which is why many of today’s top brands are using Pinterest to display their products, create awareness and build communities of targeted, qualified users. That last part is of critical importance for merchants – visitors who land on retail websites by way of Pinterest are generally highly targeted potential customers who have already shown an interest in a specific product, category or brand; more so, in fact, than most users who share products on Facebook and Twitter.

This is what makes Pinterest such a potential gold mine for merchants, and here is how to optimize for the best results.

Add “Pin it” buttons to your online store
As mentioned above, about 28 of the top 300 Internet retailers have already done this, but expect that number to rise dramatically in the very near future. Pinterest users will have Pin it bookmarks on their own computers’ browsers, but this simple step is a must for merchants who want to get the best results out of the Pinterest experience. One more reminder to visitors of your online store that your product images are available for pinning can go a long way toward attracting and converting new customers.

Get creative with your use of images
If you have been delaying that update to your product catalog or website design, do not put them off any longer. Pinterest offers a rapidly growing community with which to share your images, but not just any images or use of imagery will do. Poor-quality, outdated or uninteresting product photos may even have the opposite effect and drive users away from your store rather than to it. Make sure that you offer a wide selection of photos that properly illustrates the different styles in which your products are available (see example).

And product images are hardly all we’re talking about, so start getting creative and generous with your overall use of imagery. Add compelling photos to each and every blog post and pin the images to Pinterest; update the “About” section of your website with photos of staff members and pin them to Pinterest; involve your customers in the process and ask them to submit their own photos of themselves with your products, perhaps as part of a contest, and pin them to Pinterest; take photos at industry events and your own company events and pin those to Pinterest, too. These are just a few ideas for how to get more serious about images and video than you may have been up to this point.

Take advantage of your tracking and referral data
Through Google Analytics, merchants can easily determine what referral traffic is arriving via Pinterest as well as keeping track of individual pins. This information can be used to determine the most popular items on your board that are receiving the most pins and how many actual conversions are resulting in each case. Based on this data, retailers can experiment with time-sensitive sales for Pinterest users or offer discounts for the products that users are pinning the most – and/or rewards for the most active pinners among your Pinterest community.

Don’t be a stranger
The most successful merchants on Pinterest are going to be the ones who actually use it the way other users do, and not strictly as a marketing vehicle. So have fun with it and interact with the community, and don’t be a stranger who drops in every once in a while. Get in the habit of spending some part of every day on the site, and also in the habit of pinning every interesting, fun and/or engaging photo or video that you come across. You won’t really be a part of the community if your only interactions are dropping by every other week to pin a new product photo. One way to ensure that you have a community of users from the start is by encouraging your existing customers to take the Pinterest plunge along with you, and build out from there. Another way to increase your Pinterest street cred is by playing on both sides of the ball, i.e. make sure that you are helping other users by pinning their photos and videos rather than just idly sitting by and waiting for users to pin your content.

Don’t stop at Pinterest
Just as the daily deals craze began with Groupon but then grew exponentially larger than the company behind it, the pinboarding craze has more than a good chance to outgrow just Pinterest. In fact, that process has already begun with sites such as Chill, a pinboarding site for video only, and tools such as this one for Joomla users and these WordPress plugins. Many retailers went this route at the height of the daily deals buzz and have enjoyed great success by running their own versions of deals sites, but at the very least you should keep an eye on the increasing number of Pinterest clones out there and give some of them a try as well.

BY: http://www.websitemagazine.com/content/blogs/posts/archive/2012/02/27/pinterest-optimization-for-internet-retailers.aspx?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter

Demand Generation Strategies for 2012: 5 Emerging Trends in B2B Marketing

12 二月

State_Of_DemandGen_copy_1The proliferation of devices and changes in media preferences is dictating the rapid evolution of marketing strategies. As organizations work to cater to today’s time-starved buyer, the new sales and marketing landscape is driven by a variety of technologies and tools.

DemandGen Report polled leading experts in the demand generation space for their outlook on these key emerging trends. As highlighted in the upcoming State of Demand Generation 2012 Report, thought leaders pointed to the following emerging trends for 2012:

  • Gamification for B2B— Referred to as “nurturing at its best” by BlueBird Strategies Partner Cari Baldwin, gamification has already taken flight in the B2C world. In an effort to provide a recreation-based approach to marketing, gamification is poised to help organizations with both internal and customer-facing communications.

“Gamification is attracting marketers,” Baldwin wrote in the report. “But marketing automation has so far seen little gamification. It’s time for this to change.”

In the report, Baldwin offers tips on how marketers can use gamification, as well as a case study example of how one organization drove more than $200,000 in business via gamification.

  • Mobilization— As people are accessing more channels than ever, including email, social media, smart phones and tablets, marketers have even greater opportunities to collect the best customer data.

“Savvy marketers will know that in order to drive the most revenue, they will need to reach prospects on more than one channel,” wrote Bryan Brown, Director of Product Strategy at Silverpop.

Brown offers tips on how marketers can mix up marketing to mobilize campaigns via tablets and smart phones.

  • Bringing B2C tactics into B2B— Who says B2C has more fun? While industry research indicated that the vast majority of B2B traffic is typically coming from new visitors, it’s a reality for every marketer is challenged with — lesser opportunity to leverage any sort of stored history to personalize the experience for the browser.

“BtoB sells to accounts, not individuals, and yet most of the widely practiced personalization techniques are geared towards individual behaviors or browsing histories,” wrote Jason Stewart, Director of Marketing at Demandbase.

In the report, Stewart offers five steps B2B companies can take to implement an account-based personalization model on their web sites to drive conversions.

  • Connecting Marketing To The C-Suite— As Revenue Performance Management made significant headway as an important, emerging category, selling to the C-Suite has become an increasingly hot topic of conversation.

“Driving top-line growth is the universal C-suite challenge, which is why Revenue Performance Management immediately caught on so quickly,” noted Eloqua CEO Joe Payne, of the emerging category. “Simply put, RPM is a good night’s sleep for an executive who tosses and turns over revenue fears.

Payne offers 3 ways Revenue Performance Management differs from marketing automation.

  • Integrating Social & Traditional Media- The proliferation of media channels has tasked marketers with the critical challenge of being present across a variety of forums. Progressive marketers are integrating social initiatives into traditional media usage to optimize prospect reach, communication and engagement.

“At the end of the day, the goal for all marketers is to find new and compelling ways to engage with their leads and prospects,” wrote Shawn Naggiar, Chief Revenue Officer at Act-On Software. The one-two punch of marketing automation combined with social media added to your standard marketing mix enables you to elevate your marketing effectiveness with minimal disruption and cost.”

Naggiar offers 5 steps to up the ante with marketing automation.

A real need for new adopters is often “working out the kinks” of an automation system by subscribing to a process-based approach. This starts by identifying obstacles to then develop an understanding of how to integrate efficiently for the best results.

“Organizations using any technology alone to address their marketing and sales challenges can often experience a negative return,” noted Terry Flaherty, VP Marketing at Bulldog Solutions. “Implementing a marketing automation system can actually leave you with more problems than you started with prior to the implementation.”

Flaherty offers the 7 building blocks of successful marketing automation.

With industry expectations set high for rapid growth in technology-driven marketing automation, 2012 is poised to be a year of innovation and enhanced adoption. These and other key demand generation trends will be explored in the upcoming State of Demand Generation 2012 Report.

By: http://www.demandgenreport.com/archives/feature-articles/1026-demand-generation-strategies-for-2012-5-emerging-trends-in-b2b-marketing-.html

What’s next to Digital Coupons?

21 一月

Jeff Hudson is co-founder of Grocery Coupon Network, one of the leading coupon communities on the web. By aggregating the best digital grocery coupons and special offers from local and national brands, the company provides a reliable source for those looking to save money and time.

Couponing had seen unprecedented growth in the past decade due to a combination of factors — one of which was the economic recession in the U.S., combined with an increased consumer interest in mobile technology and devices.

Because of this, marketers began to heavily fund digital platforms. The coupon industry, specifically, saw record growth within the digital realm, and by 2010, SavingStar estimated that “49 million people used printable or digital coupons.”

SEE ALSO: HOW TO: Create and Distribute Effective Online CouponsThe benefits digital interactions offer coupon companies are vast. For starters, online couponing allows for great promotion and wider distribution for brands. It also provides companies with better reach and the ability to track consumer preferences and patterns. Data from Leo J. Shapiro and Associates determined that the digital coupon consumer base was primarily comprised of young married couples with disposable income. Groupon has targeted this demographic, lending digital couponing a social reputation.

Daily deal couponing continues to be a popular tool among consumers and marketers, and many major companies have implemented their own version of the trend.


What Business Owners Need to Know About Daily Deal Couponing


Although intriguing for consumers, daily deal platforms like Groupon have not always been beneficial for business owners, who often see a spike in business but little customer retention.

A Rice University study found that 66% of the 150 businesses surveyed reported that Groupon promotions were profitable. However, more than 40% of the organizations said that they wouldn’t run a Groupon offer again.

Daily deal platforms have revealed the social nature of contemporary couponing. For example, Cornell University reported that many Groupon users see themselves as “marketing mavens,” and “on the front edge of market trends and price information.”

Additionally, users claimed in the survey that they would not have tried a restaurant or store without a coupon offer. Contemporary couponing has highly influenced social branding, greatly increasing the popularity of daily deals.

1. Social Leads to Social Sharing

The social, daily deal strategies made popular by sites such as Groupon and Living Social have certainly spawned many copycat initiatives within the digital couponing realm.

One such example is SocialTwist, a platform that states it “allows users to share in order to receive a better bargain.” Basically, consumers can turn a $1 coupon into a $4 coupon simply by sharing it with four other people.

This method will likely continue to increase in popularity in 2012 — we already saw evidence late November 2011, when Foursquare announced it would incorporate a new “social sharing” button on its site.

2. Getting Mobile-Ready

Given these newer strategies, companies are mobilizing their virtual and physical platforms to better reach and retain these social, mobile customers. Most companies are aware that their mobile presences have to be dynamic and user friendly. With roughly 91% of the population using mobile devices and 26.3% accessing the Internet, it is important to have a mobile site for on-the-go reading and utilization.

Additionally Google reported that 95% of smartphone users have searched for local information, proving that location-based, deal searching is vital to digital couponing.

The same study found 38% would use a mobile device to find a store location, 34% to compare prices, 28% to research deals and coupons, and 27% to find a product review.

3. Resolving Mobile Couponing’s Redemption Pitfalls

Mobile couponing, an obvious extension and result of digital distribution, has been popular despite its “mechanical” issues. With the rise of digital coupons, there was also a surge in consumers who used their mobile devices to reference coupons visually on their smartphones. Unprepared for this development, the redemption process, such as the scanning of digital coupons on mobile devices, has proven difficult until recently.

“Mobile coupon redemption has always struggled with ensuring a seamless experience at the point of sale,” says reporter Steve Smith. So, business giants like Walgreens are “retraining salespeople to handle the process and equipping stores with hardware that can recognize 2D codes on LCD displays.” This nationwide initiative was just launched and underwent testing during the 2011 holiday season.

Walgreens released an app for iOS, BlackBerry and Android, which includes a new coupons section that issues up two to three new exclusive weekly deals for customers using the mobile apps.

Rich Lesperance, head of digital marketing and merging media for Walgreens, told Media Post that “the program is the largest deployment of in-store mobile coupon scanning of which he is aware.”


Looking Ahead to the SoLoMo Strategy


In short, the “social-local-mobile” trend is the next cutting edge move for digital businesses, and a necessary consideration for coupon brands. SoLoMo gets specific when it comes to targeting your ideal market and allows your ideal consumer to find you. The combination is a win for both parties, as well as the logical next step for consumer activity based on current digital engagement.

By: http://sebastianmourra.com/2012/01/19/what%E2%80%99s-next-for-digital-coupons/