How To Segment A Market

Segmentation is the first stage of the STP process (segmentation, targeting, positioning) and is arguably the most challenging, but insightful of all marketing tasks. This article only covers the process at high level and further reading should be done to build your knowledge. To help get you on your way, we’ve broken the process down into four steps detailed below; but first let’s define market segmentation: Segmentation is the process of grouping together markets who have similar characteristics, needs and buying styles. Note: Markets can be your target consumers, customers, businesses, individuals, groups or a mixture of these. Let’s go through the four steps: 1.Define your market(s) For each market you’re in, answer the following questions: – What is the market about? – What is that market’s need? Note: You need a clear set of boundaries for each market; for instance, geographic area.  Your markets should be broad, yet specific as there could be a number of ways in which to satisfy your audiences needs (not just yours). Example: Market description Global Communication devices Market need – to communicate with friends, family and colleagues 2.Map your market(s) Who are your suppliers, distributors, retailers, contractors and final users? Map them out so that you …

Google Analytics Hints And Tips

We thought you might like some quick Google analytics hints and tips, so here you go.  We will keep adding new ones, so keep coming back for more! Filters Use the Analytics filter to remove visits from your own IP address. This works going forward only, and is not retrospective; it can take up to 24 hours to begin working. Login into analytics > select your website profile > click: analytics settlings > click: filter manager > click: add filter > set up your filter > add your website > save the changes Goals Understand how ‘sticky’ your website is by setting up goals for the average time on site and number of pages viewed e.g. number of visits who stay for more than two minutes Login into analytics > select your website profile > under actions, click: edit > click: add goal > set up your goal > save the goal Event Tracking Track your file downloads e.g. PDF, docx, AVI by placing this code against your download button. Snippet from Google: Important: if your pages include a call to _trackPageview, _setAllowLinker _trackTrans(), your Analytics tracking code must be placed in your HTML code above any of these calls. In …

Setting Up Your Own Website

Like the saying ‘everyone has got a book in them’, I think that everyone’s got a website in them. So with that in mind I thought it would be helpful if I covered the basics in starting up your own website. Subject Matter First and most importantly, is deciding what your website is about and how it meets the needs of your audience. Chances are there is already a website covering your subject , but that doesn’t matter! You will have different ideas, ways of explaining things and other differentiators, but it’s important that you find a competitive edge and keep it! So, research your competitors and understand your markets and audiences to find ways of delivering better value. Website URL Now you have your winning idea, you need a strong URL. This should be memorable and relevant to your brand or company name. It doesn’t have to be a description of your products and services, for example Moonpig.com isn’t obvious that it sells cards, but it is memorable! On the other hand simplydigitalmarketing.com is the name of our company and covers our main subject – Digital Marketing – so find the right URL for you. To check if a URL is available, use …

What Does My Bounce Rate Mean?

Put simply, it’s the percentage of visits which leave your site on the page they entered. Google defines it as follows: “Bounce rate is the percentage of single-page visits or visits in which the person left your site from the entrance (landing) page. Use this metric to measure visit quality – a high bounce rate generally indicates that site entrance pages aren’t relevant to your visitors. The more compelling your landing pages, the more visitors will stay on your site and convert.You can minimize bounce rates by tailoring landing pages to each keyword and ad that you run. Landing pages should provide the information and services that were promised in the ad copy.” For clarity then, there is no reference made by Google to time – so a visitor could stay on the landing page for hours and then exit from that page, this would give you a high bounce rate for that page; so along with every other statistic, the bounce rate should be looked at with other stats. So what can you do to improve your bounce rate? Ask yourself the following: – Who are your target audience? Do your landing pages and website appeal to them? – Is your …

The Basics of Link Building As Part of SEO

Link building is a key part of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), but firstly, what is a link and how does it affect your search engine organic ranks? An inbound link (backlink) is a link from another website page (affiliate site), to a page on your site. Having high quality and relevant backlinks gives your site authority which heavily affects where you are placed organically for the keywords your audience search for. The relevance of the affiliate site, anchor text and content determines which keywords you will rank for, but it’s the quality and number of links which determine how well you rank for those keyword. Remember we are talking about link building – there are other factors which affect where you rank in search engine results – read our Introduction to SEO for more information. So how do you build links? Firstly you must have good quality content for people to link to and view, then: Most Valuable Links – Get links from high quality authority sites (.gov .edu, news) – you can ask for these, pay for them or if your content is good enough get them naturally – Share your content with others e.g. slideshare – Write unique …

The Basics of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

Search engine optimisation (SEO) is part of Search engine Marketing (SEM) and can be further broken down into on-page and off-page optimisation – not really something we go into here.  This article will take you through the very basics of SEO – it’s really a beginners ‘check list’ and will get you on your way to building long-term results. The foundation Buy an independent domain name i.e. one which you fully own and can get hosted where ever you want. Depending on your brand, it may be an advantage to have a URL with your main keyword in it. Our main keyword is Digital Marketing; so www.SimplyDigitalMarketing.com is perfect for us. If you can, buy .com, .co.uk and .org for your chosen URL name. This will ensure any competition can’t snap them up! You can buy other ones later, but in the mean time redirect the secondary ones to the main one you use. Do some keyword analysis so you’re clear on the keywords you will be targeting (the google keyword tool is a good place to start) Focus on two or three keywords/phrases per page on your site. Name your pages sensibly, using words not numbers e.g. www.simplydigitalmarketing.com/free-stuff It’s usually good to separate each word …

What’s The Difference Between SEO And SEM?

Put simply, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a part of Search Engine Marketing (SEM) – SEM is the ‘parent’ and SEO is one of the ‘children’. What is SEO? Well it’s an ongoing process which helps you rank as high as possible in the organic search engine results, such as Google, for the keywords and terms your target audience searches for. The key here is organic results i.e. the natural, non-paid results. SEM includes SEO, plus the following: – Paid inclusion, which is when you pay a search engine or directory for your site to be instantly added to their listings rather than relying on the search engine spiders to rank you over time. – Pay per click ads, such as Google adwords, shown in the image above. These are display ads which appear in the search results based on the keywords entered and you pay each time your ad is clicked. The additional practices in SEM offer the advantage of speed, as the results are instant, but you will pay for this. Many websites will use paid adverts whilst they work their way up the organic listings. However, paid listings are also often used to supplement organic results as a number of users will click on the …

Basic Email Marketing Rules

Although becoming a veteran tool compared to the likes of social media, email marketing still ads a lot of value to any good digital marketing campaign. Be careful though, as you know your self, your inbox can get bombarded by work colleagues and friends, let alone marketing comms – so these are our seven basic rules to hwlp you maximise your open and click through rates: [h3]1. Define your objectives[/h3] Firstly, what is it that you are trying to achieve with your email – is it exposre? Traffic? or increased Sales? Although the open, click and conversion rate are all relevant, there are occasions where one may take priority. – Exposure- primarily after a good open rate – Traffic- primarily after a good click through rate – Sales- primarily after a good conversions rate [h3]2. Give your subscribers valuable content[/h3] No matter what your subjectline is, email marketing needs good content – good and relevant content builds trust in your subscribers and will encourage them to keep opening your emails. Here are some examples you could include: – Promotions/Offers – Company/Product/Service news – Videos/hints & tips [h3]3. Create clear call to actions (CTAs)[/h3] Getting your audience to open your emails is hard enough, but once …

What’s The Best Day To Send My Marketing Emails?

This is the million pound question in email marketing and brings much debate in our field. I will begin by stating that there is no definitive answer and that there are many factors which influence your email open, click-through and conversion rates. There are hundreds of studies on this subject – one suggests that Tuesdays yield the best open rate, however the highest click-through rates came on a Wednesday and Thursday. Other studies suggest however, that Friday offers the best open rate. Confusing?! Not to worry, because with some comprehensive analysis (primarily of your own data), a winning formula can be found for your email campaigns. To begin, ask yourself what are you trying to maximise? Opens, clicks or conversions? This sets the foundation of your analysis as the timing and frequency of your emails may change depending on your answer. It’s important that you look at day and time as a combined factor – for example, Saturday may show as the best day overall but Monday morning shows to be better than Saturday mornings. We’ll break these down later on, but keep it in mind as you read this article and analyse your data. Here’s an example of what your analysis could …

Which Social Media Tool Generates The Best Traffic?

It all depends on the type of traffic you’d like and the audience you want to reach (or the frame of mind you’d like them to be in when you reach them – more on this later). Do you just need exposure or is there a product to sell? Your answer to this determines which social media tools you should lead with. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket As you’ll often hear me say, variety is the spice of life, so it’s best to use different tools to match each audience and a mixture often produces the best results. The first thing you must therefore do is understand your target markets. Begin by splitting your audience into segments for each product you have e.g. by location, age, interests etc. Understanding your audience is the key to choosing the social media tools which will reach and engage with them the most – there are many to choose from, but this article focuses on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Google+. In terms of audiences, I break the top four social media tools up as follows: Facebook – Casual, non corporate audiences (B2C) LinkedIn – Professional, corporate audiences (B2B) Twitter – Mixture of casual and professional audiences Google+ …

What’s The Most Cost Effective Way To Promote Your Business?

This is a question on the lips of every business person, particularly the new comers. The first thing to say is that every business’s budget is different, so this article is assuming the lowest budget of all; nothing but time! So with that in mind, the most cost-effective way is definitely through social media and word of mouth. Your objective is to deliver a quality service which can be shouted about and build a community by choosing the right communication tools for your target audience e.g. LinkedIn for the professionals and Facebook for the more casual. Building a community takes time, so the best thing you can do is be active in as many relevant places as possible and create interesting articles, videos and messages which promote your brand. You will need to adapt your messaging and content depending on the audience you’re targeting and your overall goal is to create viral content which your community forward on; this will then bring you more followers, traffic and ultimately exposure. The most viral content is video, then audio and then comedy. These will not always be appropriate for your brand, but if they are, use them. Having a YouTube account and filling it …

Why Do Digital Marketing Plans Fail?

Digital marketing plans fail for all sorts of reasons – in my experience it comes down to people and communication, however for a more in-depth and researched based list I’ve turned to those outlined in Malcom McDonald and Hugh Wilson’s Marketing Planning book: – Lack of support and interest from the board of directors – Delegating the plan to someone who may not fully understand the business e.g. a planner – Lack of belief of the planner in the value of the plan – Failure to align the marketing plan with the corporate plan – Having an ‘all in one’ plan which doesn’t separate and define the short and long-term objectives – Heavy use of statistics which are not summarised and put into context – Poor planning and internal release of the plan – Confusion and misunderstanding of plan terminology – Treating the plan as a once a year activity Some of these points are in the control of the individual creating and implementing the plan and some are not – this makes the success of your digital marketing plan even more challenging than creating it! So work hard on the points above and be sure to allow up to 3 years to see the results of …

Why Is A Digital Marketing Plan Important?

Having a strong digital marketing plan sets the foundation for business success and is underpinned by a marketing audit. Clear objectives, missions and visions on all levels set the tone of the business for the short, medium and long-term. Detailed research must go into your target markets, audiences, competitors and internal business to ensure a sound foundation for your plan. The overall objective of your digital marketing plan is to identify and deliver sustainable and profitable competitive advantage year on year. As marketing in general is responsible for delivering value to stakeholders as well as your audience, a comprehensive plan should be developed to satisfy their interest too – this means key sections of your plan should be communicated to the whole business; this will ensure that everyone’s working together to deliver what you promise your audiences. What should your digital marketing plan include? Well all plans are different, but we find the SOSTAC model to be the simplest – here’s an example: 1. Introduction to the plan 2. An Executive Summary ——2.1 Current Position ——2.2 Key Issues/Challenges 3. Organisation Vision, Mission & Values 4. Marketing Vision & Mission 5. Situation Analysis (S) ——5.1 Customer Touch Points ——5.2 Learnings from Last Year …

Why Is A Digital Marketing Audit Important?

To create a marketing plan without first conducting a comprehensive marketing audit would be like building a house straight onto soft sand – you need a strong foundation for long-lasting success and it’s your marketing audit which gives you that in business. A marketing audit can be defined as: ‘A review of the internal and external marketing environments as well as the company’s operation.’ It’s your marketing audit which sets the direction of your main plan and is often written as a separate document. Below we have listed what should be included in accordance with Megicks, Donnelly and Harrison (2009): 1. Introduction to the audit 2. An Executive Summary ——2.1 Key Issues/Actions 3. Marketing Environments ——3.1 Micro (including internal) ——3.2 Macro 4. Marketing Strategy ——4.1 Vision, Mission & Position Statement ——4.2 Marketing Objectives and Goals ——4.3 Marketing Strategy 5. Marketing Department ——5.1 Formal Structure ——5.2 Functional Efficiency ——5.3 Interface Efficiency 6. Marketing Systems ——6.1 Information systems ——6.2 Planning systems ——6.3 Control systems ——6.4 New Product Development systems (NPD) 7. Marketing Productivity ——7.1 Profitability ——7.2 Cost Effectiveness ——7.3 Return on investment (ROI) 8. Marketing Functions ——8.1 Full Marketing Mix (7 P’s) Each area above should be fully audited for performance, effectivness and return; you’re looking to …

What Is Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing is a sub branch of traditional marketing and uses modern digital channels for the placement of products e.g. downloadable music, and primarily for communicating with stakeholders e.g. customers and investors about brand, products and business progress. So digital marketing is about two things –  access to your products and communication. Online Marketing – Website Optimisation –