Tag Archives: analytics

Proving Marketing ROI Is Difficult

18 Aug

As we’ve posted before (see, for example, 1, 2), measuring marketing’s return on investment is both important and difficult.

Now, according to B2B Marketing, the situation is changing:

“The old perception of marketing as an immeasurable dark art whose benefits could not be quantified by mere numbers seems to be over. In its place, the new imperative is ‘marketing as science’, where any marketer worth their salt will be able quote brilliant ROI figures for past and future campaigns.”

“While it’s understandable that there should be a desire among marketers to show that investment in their department is having a positive effect on the bottom line, it’s also undoubtedly true that lots of practitioners are still struggling to do this. What’s the problem? Are marketers’ ROI formulas outdated? Are situational differences disrupting the playing field? Are businesses measuring marketing contributions in the right way?”

Click the image below for some solutions related to better measuring marketing ROI.

 

 

Online Marketing Resources

12 Aug

Looking for more online, easy-to-use, inexpensive marketing resources?

If yes, then check out this slideshow from Damon Nofar, a freelance presentation designer who helps marketers and speakers with their presentations. These nine resources are featured in the slideshow:

 

 

Small Business Social Media Trends

4 Aug

Interested in seeing how small businesses use social media to generate sales? Curious about which social media platforms are working well for small firms?

For its seventh annual Social Media Marketing Industry Report, Social Media Examiner surveyed 3,720 marketers, business owners, and solopreneurs from the United States and overseas, to uncover various trends. Here are 12 of the most important trends:

  1. Social Media Critical for Small Business — “96% of survey participants use social media marketing, and 92% of those agree or strongly agree with the phrase, ‘Social media marketing is important for my business.'”
  2. Facebook Dominates Small Business Social Media Marketing — “The majority of respondents carry out social media marketing on Facebook. 93% use Facebook, ahead of Twitter at 79%.”
  3. B2B Small Businesses Use Social Differently Than B2C — “Breaking down Social Media Marketing Industry Report averages is useful. B2B respondents for this survey report that LinkedIn is their number-one choice for social networking.”
  4. Most Small Business Marketers Don’t Know if Facebook Efforts Are Working — “Despite the fact that 92% of small businesses agree that social media is important for their business AND that the majority use Facebook for their social media marketing, most also report that they don’t know whether their Facebook outreach is ‘working.’”
  5. Small Businesses Plan to Expand Facebook Activities This Year — “The Social Media Marketing Industry Report also found that, again, despite the cloudiness surrounding Facebook’s effectiveness, 62% plan to increase activities on it.”
  6. Most Small Businesses Spend 6 Hours or More Weekly on Social Media — “Because of the crush of responsibilities they have, small business owners worry about the time it takes to keep an audience engaged on social channels. Tools like Hootsuite and Post Planner cut down on time spent, but social media marketing still requires significant time.”
  7. Small Businesses Identify Increased Exposure as Social’s Top Benefit — “Even though ‘increased exposure’ is more difficult to measure than a metric like traffic or bounce rate, marketers and small business owners rank it the number-one benefit of marketing on social media.”
  8. Increased Traffic to Website Is Number-Two Benefit of Social Marketing — “77% of the survey respondents have appreciated the traffic that comes to their sites via social referral (clicking from Facebook or LinkedIn to the website for a blog post or landing page offer). Google Analytics and other tools make getting this data possible, even easy.”
  9. Social Media Cuts Marketing Expenses for Small Businesses — “Early on, social media developed the reputation of reaching audiences at a low price.”
  10. Small Business Direct Social Sales Rise Over Time — “More than half of marketers who have been using social media for more than 2 years report their channels helped them improve sales. Seventy percent of those with a 5-year social media marketing investment report it helps improve sales.”
  11. Facebook Dominates Social Media Paid Ads — “The low cost associated with social media ads is just one aspect that appeals to small businesses. The ability to target ads to a narrow geographic (down to the zip code) and demographic market provides another.”
  12. Types of Social Media Content — “Blogging and visual assets nearly tied at 70% and 71% respectively. The self-employed depend on blogging, with 79% of that faction reporting they blog. At this time, just 10% of marketers use podcasting, but some speculate that podcasting could be an opportunity. Requiring higher budgets and more technology, video content finishes third.”

 

Click the image to read more.

 

Young Adults Shopping at Wal-Mart

27 Jul

Yes, you read the title to this post correctly. Despite some stereotypes to the contrary, Wal-Mart is attracting lots of young adults.

InfoScout recently conducted research on this subject. As reported by Jack Neff for Advertising Age, there were some unexpected results:

“What’s the hottest big retailer with millennials [young adults]? Wal-Mart. The reason may be its investment in E-commerce and mobile, or it could be that its low prices resonated during the economic downturn. Or it could be specialty Tommee Tippee baby bottles [ :-) ].”

“‘Millennials now, as a generation, like Wal-Mart the best, more so than Generation X, more so than boomers,’ said Matt Kistler, Wal-Mart senior VP-consumer insights and analytics. ‘That kind of shocks a lot of people, including inside the company,’ admitted Wal-Mart Chief Marketing Officer Stephen Quinn.”

“It doesn’t exactly jibe with the perception that big-box supercenters are losing ground to niche brands, small stores, and E-commerce. Mr. Quinn sees it differently. ‘As millennials become time-crunched with relationships and kids coming along, it’s opening up a strong need for them to have a one-stop shop,’ he said.”

Click the chart to read more from Neff.
 

 

Free Resources from Trendwatching.com

17 Jul

Trendwatching.com is an excellent source of information about current and emerging trends around the globe:

“Established in 2002, we help forward-thinking business professionals in 180+ countries understand the new consumer and subsequently uncover compelling, profitable innovation opportunities. We rely on professionals in London, New York, São Paulo, Singapore and Lagos and on our network of spotters in more than 90+ countries worldwide.”

At its Web site, Trendwatching.com makes available a number of free resources. Here are some recent examples:

 

 

Analyzing Competitors’ Social Media Activities

14 Jul

How can we assess the social media activities of competitors? Although there are several perspectives we can take, Social Media Examiner has presented several excellent tips for monitoring competitors.

As reported by Megan Hannay:

“Researching your competitors on social media not only provides an overview of your industry, but it also gives you insight into the current habits of the audiences you’re targeting. By answering a few key questions, you’ll see what kinds of posts are effective for the people you want to reach.”

Here are just some of the questions raised by Hannay in her article:

#1: Analyze Facebook Pages — If you want to gain insight into a company’s Facebook page, here are some questions to consider: How many followers do they have? What are they posting about?Are their posts mostly internal (company-based) news, blog posts and articles; mostly external news, blog posts and articles; or a mix of both?”

#2: Look at Twitter Accounts — How many followers do they have? How many accounts are they following? A good rule of thumb: An account with 50,000 followers that’s following 500 users probably has more influence than an account with 50,000 followers that’s following 49,000 users, unless they bought followers.”

#3: Examine Instagram Accounts — How many followers do they have? How many accounts are they following? Are their posts mostly internal, external or a mix of both? How on-brand are their photos? Do they show the product or service in each shot, or do they follow a more lifestyle-oriented content strategy?”

#4: Review YouTube Channels — What’s their video content like, and how on-brand is it? Do they stick to product tutorials, or do they branch out to product non-specific tutorials? Do they show off company parties and happy hours? How many subscribers do they have?”

#5: Evaluate Pinterest Accounts — How many followers do they have, and how many users do they follow? How do they show off their product or service in pins? How do they organize their pins? What are their board names? Are their pins all brand-generated (product pins) or do they repin others?”

#6: Monitor Snapchat, Periscope, and Meerkat Accounts — Due to the nature of their content, it’s difficult to evaluate these channels in one go. But if your competitors use them, follow their accounts and check out their content when it goes live. Here are some questions to consider: What content are they posting? How many interactions (on Periscope and Meerkat) do they garner from their fans?”

 
Click the image to read all of Hannay’s suggestions.


 

Why Is the Management of Big Data So Difficult?

13 Jul

As we have posted several times before, big data analytics are here to stay and growing in importance. [See, for example, 1, 2, 3, 4.] Nonetheless, big data analytics are not simple.

According to eMarketer:

“Companies’ increased customer focus, demand for business growth and expansion, and the need to keep up with competitors are all fueling big data adoption, according to industry sources. In a February 2015 study conducted by Vanson Bourne for CA Technologies, improving the customer experience (60%) and the need to get new customers (54%) were the leading factors driving the need for big data projects, according to IT managers worldwide. Increasing top-line revenue growth (46%), entering new markets (42%), keeping up with the competition (41%) and outpacing competitors (34%) followed. May 2015 polling by 2nd Watch found similar results. Here, U.S. IT and business execs cited identifying new areas for business growth or product strategy (33%) as well as areas for operational efficiency and cost savings (28%) as the top drivers for big data plans, followed by better understanding customers and improving the customer experience (25%).”

 

“However, challenges related to skill sets and poor technology arise when it comes to actually implementing big data. Among 2nd Watch respondents, data quality issues, outdated infrastructure, and a lack of internal expertise were the biggest hurdles to execution.”

 
 
 Click the chart to read more.
 

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