Category Archives: Facebook Analytics

Inbound Marketing

Inbound Marketing 101

What is inbound marketing, and why should you care about it? Inbound is the new, shiny tool in the marketing shed when it comes to sharing with others what your company is all about and why they should care about you. In the digital world we live in, businesses can’t afford to give inbound marketing the side eye; rather, you should opt to embrace this immensely powerful tool to give your company’s marketing strategy a boost.

The 2-Way Difference

This form of marketing focuses on a two-way communication system, engaging and informing consumers about your products or services while simultaneously receiving information from said audience. Inbound is all about establishing and maintaining connections with customers, rather than trying to give them a hard sell like the traditional methods (although both have their place in your strategy).

Customers want solutions to their problems. Inbound marketing strategies give the people what they want by providing answers to questions, innovative solutions to problems, and rich content that engages an audience and leaves them with a delectable taste in their mind’s mouth when it comes to your business.

The Mediums

Inbound is chock-full of digital mediums to explore in your marketing strategy. A few of our key favorites we like to get people started with are:

Websites are an absolute must if you want to make it in today’s marketplaces. Without a dependable online hub for your audience to visit, your company will quickly be forgotten and consumers will travel to the next competitor that has what they’re looking for.

Blogs are an exceptional way to help engage customers, build your credibility, and do some essential SEO in the background to boot. Providing rich content that solves problems positions you as a credible, go-to source and leaves an audience coming back to you for more. Plus, blogs are great for building a strong SEO foundation to help you stand out and be more easily found by potential customers.

Social Media presence is a vital ingredient in the well-rounded marketing cocktail, too. It offers wonderful platforms to receive customer feedback and to showcase what you have to offer, and even allows you to share that hilarious meme your followers will get a kick out of.

Use It or Lose It

What makes inbound marketing even more wonderful? Analytics. These digital avenues provide exceptional data on who is coming to your material, what they’re doing during visits, and so much more. Wielding this information to your benefit is made easier than ever before with fabulous tools like Google Analytics and Facebook Insights. The more you know about your audience, the better you are able to give them what they want. It’s a win-win.

Ready to get your inbound marketing strategy up to snuff? Our team can help get you started in the right direction. Give us a call today for more information, and to set up a time to chat about implementing these innovative solutions into your marketing strategy today.

Top 3 Ways to Properly Use Hashtags

Ahhhhh, hashtags… If you or your brand have been on social media at all in the past few years, then we can only assume you’ve been confronted with the use and misuse of hashtags. Plus, in recent years, it’s been almost impossible not to see multi-million-dollar campaigns with hashtags as their main focus on a daily basis. What exactly is a hashtag? A hashtag symbolizes a trending topic (such as #SuperBowlXLIX or #JeSuisCharlie) that makes itself visible on social media by placing a good old pound sign ‘#’ in front of the topic. By using a hashtag, a social media user can click on the link created by the hashtag and see additional articles, posts and images concerning the same subject.

Carrie Underwood

Hashtags are incredibly popular for social media marketing use; however, they can be very overwhelming and confusing. This is why it is so important to use them properly – especially if you are a brand trying to obtain and maintain followers on multiple social media platforms. Take a look at our top three ways you can properly use hashtags in your social media marketing strategy.

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1. Use Sparingly – Since hashtags symbolize trending topics, it’s important to remember that in a Facebook or Twitter post, you should not go “hashtag happy”; not every word is in itself a trending topic. Limit the amount of hashtags to an average of one to three per post, depending on the length and content. For example, let’s say if you are posting about a giveaway your brand is doing during a football game, your post could go something like this:

“Don’t forget! Submit a picture of your favorite game-day traditions and you could win tickets to the Wildcats’’ next home game. #GameDayGiveaway #GoWildCats”

2. Look to Other Trending Topics – Although implementing your own trending hashtag can be forward-thinking, sometimes picking up on an already trending hashtag can make you incredibly visible across multiple social media platforms. However, you have to make sure you complement the hashtag with rich and meaningful content that will stick out amongst the rest. For instance, if you are adding to the trending topic #GoldenGlobes, you’d want to add thoughtful and critical remarks about the films and television shows that were featured, and stay away from typical or convenient remarks like “We loved to watch [Insert Actor’s Name] win an award!” This would get lost in the messy clutter.

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3. Ensure They Are Crystal-Clear – If you take away only one thing from this blog, let this be it! Making sure your hashtags are understandable is of the utmost importance. So many times we find ourselves re-reading hashtags to make sure we understood them correctly; this is because either there are too many words included in the hashtag, the letters are all in lower-case, or they are not used properly in the sentence or post. To ensure your hashtags are read properly, it is best to separate each word in the hashtag with a capital letter (for example, #BringBackOurGirls is much easier to follow than #bringbackourgirls). It is also important to keep the hashtag fairly brief when possible. For example: #LetsGoGreenBayPackers is way too long. #GoPackGo would do just fine! Remember, it’s incredibly important to re-read your hashtags before you post and make sure others can comprehend them before you deploy them on social media.

Of course, hashtags can work seamlessly in various areas of your brand’s marketing efforts. They incorporate and create trending topics in a slick, easy way that can link your brand to other brands and people focusing on similar issues and topics. If you use them properly, you will undoubtedly start to see a growth in your number of followers, shares, likes, pins, and re-tweets!

#HappyHashtagging, everyone!

Differentiated Marketing Strategy

Outbound and inbound marketing each have their place in a well-developed marketing strategy, but if you aren’t using a differentiated marketing strategy, you aren’t getting the full benefit. The problem is that while outbound and inbound marketing each serve their respective purpose, they aren’t nearly as personal. Smart marketers overcome this with a differentiated marketing strategy.

What is Differentiation?

Differentiation is a modern buzzword, but it is often misapplied. People often assume differentiation refers to product offerings, like Gap offering its Old Navy brand for its more budget-conscious customers – but that is only an example of “product differentiation.” A differentiated marketing strategy implies something completely different. Also called “segmentation,” it means that your marketing message is tailored to a unique niche. For instance, when the Australian Tourist Commission  (ATC) wanted to attract new tourists, it didn’t change what it offered (how could it?) but instead changed how it differentiated its marketing efforts.

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Differentiation in Practice

The ATC started by identifying  its target demographics and then targeting its message to each niche. One of the groups the Commission identified was “young travelers.” This subset tended to be young people taking a “gap year.” They were focused on budget accommodations, how to obtain a visa, and lifestyle experiences. They had very different wants and interests from traditional sight-seeing tourists and, in turn, would be attracted to different marketing efforts. The Australian Tourist Commission took those differences to heart and developed separate marketing strategies for each of its target niches.

Differentiating Outbound Marketing

Outbound  marketing is product-based and involves one marketer finding ways to appeal to many customers at once. Magazine advertisements, television commercials, and billboards are examples of outbound marketing. You can differentiate your outbound marketing by launching separate campaigns tailored to your individual target demographics, such as putting up different billboards in different areas, rather than using a generalized marketing approach.

Differentiating Inbound Marketing

Inbound  marketing is more personal. It creates a two-way interaction between the marketer and the customer. Examples include blogs, webinars, and search engine optimization (SEO). You can differentiate your inbound marketing efforts by finding ways to make each customer experience unique, like when a search engine tailors results based on a customer’s search history or when a website uses cookies to individualize each customer’s ad experiences.

To learn more about how SMG can help you develop differentiated outbound and inbound marketing services for your company, visit our website!