Why you should be analyzing your metrics related to reputation?

Analyzing key metrics related to reputation in social media is important to determine the effectiveness of social media campaigns as well as to discover gaps that need to be addressed. In addition, as companies generally use more than one social media platform, it is also important to compare how effective each of the platforms is in building a company’s online reputation. For this, metrics that apply to all social media platforms should be used. For example, almost every social media platform also has a feature that allows users or viewers to express their approval of content. The most common way to express this is through action buttons such as Like, Share, Follow, Upvote, Downvote etc.

Another example that applies to almost every social media platform is a feature that allows users to share content provided by the company. Tracking the number of shares can help compare engagement across platforms. The share feature allows companies to reach out to a much larger audience than the one they initially targeted. For example, if a company promotes a particular piece of content through e-mail marketing to one hundred users, the reach is usually limited only to the recipients of the e-mail. However, if the company shares the same piece of content to the one hundred users following its company page on a social media platform, the exposure can be much wider. In this case, if ten of these users share the promoted content to their contacts within the social media channel, and assuming that they each have an average of one hundred contacts, then the company’s content would reach an additional 1,000 users (100 × 10). The fact that these 1,000 users did not receive promoted content directly from the company but received the content after it had been shared by a contact of theirs serves as a recommendation and significantly improves the company’s reputation across a wider audience. Therefore, companies should track not only the customers they initially target but also the much wider audience that actually receives their content. Most of the popular social media platforms have analytics tools that allow companies to track both sets of audiences, and knowing the wider audience can help a company better plan its reputation management activities.

It is also important to understand which segments of users are more active in promoting and sharing a company’s social media activity and updates. If those segments are the ones that a company considers as its best targets, then it can conclude that its updates are striking a chord with the right audience. If, however, its updates are shared by users who are unlikely to become customers, then the company needs to investigate whether the content it is sharing is relevant to its target audience or whether its targeting parameters are correct. Failing to conduct this analysis may result in a company meeting its short-term social media targets, such as achieving a certain number of likes or shares, but failing to meet its overall revenue targets for social media.

Here are two examples of Social Media Reputation Metrics Analysis:

  • Content mobility and engagement is one of the primary metrics of social media reputation management. For example, a company that has a presence on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and a company blog might measure its social media reputation using all or some of the following:
  • Facebook likes and shares
  • YouTube video likes and shares
  • Instagram likes and comments
  • Twitter retweets
  • Pinterest repins
  • Blog article shares and comments
  • A furniture company, which is operating in multiple cities and promoting its latest designs through social media, may observe that the overall likes and shares of its campaigns are as expected, but a significant percentage of shares is coming from cities, or even countries, where the company does not have a presence at all. This may happen if the company has not defined its target audience correctly while promoting its content. Thus, the company may waste money on these campaigns without earning the expected revenue. 

    The article has originally been posted at https://www.smstudy.com/freeresources/articles
    SMstudy is the global accreditation body for Sales and Marketing certifications. For more details visit https://www.smstudy.com
    Important links:
    Visit https://www.smstudy.com/dmbokguide/download-dmbok-guide to download the Digital Marketing Body of Knowledge for free
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What is Search Marketing All About?

Search Marketing is the overall method of driving traffic to a company’s website through the use of search engines, and includes both organic search engine optimization and paid search strategies. Organic search is the free listing on search engine result pages (SERPs) and is governed by the algorithm of the particular search engine. A company’s effectiveness at being ranked high in an organic search can be optimized with various Search Engine Optimization (SEO) practices. Search Engine Marketing (SEM), or paid search, is the way in which advertisers obtain a prominent listing for their company through the paid auction model, whereby the company bids for specific terms or phrases, called keywords.

Both paid and organic listings on SERPs show up when users search for a particular keyword. The users will then click to go to the websites or product pages of the company from the listing. There is no fee charged to the company if a user links to a company through the organic results. Organic search is therefore less expensive, but it can be difficult for a company to optimize its site adequately enough to be discovered by customers. SEM allows companies to create targeted advertisements, which are shown to users when they search for the keywords based on a predetermined bidding algorithm. Companies pay the publishers for clicks; this model is also known as pay-per-click (PPC).

There are two methods to determine the advertising cost for the PPC—Bid-based and Flat-rate.

  • Bid-Based—This practice is the way in which most search engines price paid search. The ads that appear on the right side and on top of the SERP are purchased on a bid-based PPC model. In a bid-based PPC model, advertisers bid on the highest price they are willing to pay for a click on specific keywords. The actual PPC paid and the ad’s rank is then determined by the search algorithm, based on several factors, including the bid and ad quality, landing page quality, other advertisers bids, and other undisclosed factors.
  • Flat Rate—In this model, companies and publishers decide on a set rate for each click. Publishers establish fixed rates for different keywords based on the level of competition or demand for the particular keyword. Thus, the higher the demand for the keyword, the higher the rate. Different publishers have different rates for the keywords, and companies can choose to pay more for increased visibility. This model is commonly used by comparison shopping websites. 

    The article has originally been posted at https://www.smstudy.com/freeresources/articles
    SMstudy is the global accreditation body for Sales and Marketing certifications. For more details visit https://www.smstudy.com
    Important links:
    Visit https://www.smstudy.com/dmbokguide/download-dmbok-guide to download the Digital Marketing Body of Knowledge for free
    Visit https://www.smstudy.com/certification/digital-marketing-associate for free Digital Marketing Associate certification and course

Relationship Metrics and Targets for Mobile Website

Since customers are increasingly interacting with businesses via mobile devices, companies invest significant time and effort in ensuring that they create sites that are optimized to offer a positive customer experience by displaying useful and relevant content and by providing functionality that is suited to mobile devices. The marketing team must continuously evaluate metrics data against previously set targets in order to ensure optimal relationship targets are being met and to implement corrective measures to address any shortfalls. Some of these metrics include the following:

Active Users—This metric determines the number of daily or monthly active users or visitors of the site.

Session Length—This is the time period between when the site is opened and closed (or when the session is ended) and helps identify the time spent by users on the mobile site.

Session Interval—This is the time interval between consecutive sessions and indicates the frequency with which users launch the site.

Bounce Rate—This metric measures the percentage of visitors who exited the mobile site after visiting just one page. A high bounce rate indicates a low level of engagement with customers, suggesting the consumer did not find value in the mobile site.

Here is an example of Relationship Metrics and Targets for Mobile Website:

The marketing manager of a pet supply company had to update her manager about the performance of the company’s new mobile site. New users had been steadily growing over the prior weeks, and engagement was increasing. However, she was shocked to discover that, in the last week, the average session time had decreased by twenty-five percent. She further analyzed the available metrics and discovered that the number of page views was down and the most visited page for dog food had dropped significantly. This led her to investigate further and talk to the tech team. She discovered that there had been technical issues with the site. There was one outage and a broken link to the most visited page in the past week. As a result, new procedures were established for the technical team to notify sales and marketing immediately in the event of any site issues.

 

The article has originally been posted at https://www.smstudy.com/freeresources/articles
SMstudy is the global accreditation body for Sales and Marketing certifications. For more details visit https://www.smstudy.com
Important links:
Visit https://www.smstudy.com/dmbokguide/download-dmbok-guide to download the Digital Marketing Body of Knowledge for free
Visit https://www.smstudy.com/certification/digital-marketing-associate for free Digital Marketing Associate certification and course

Role of Social Media in Planning Digital Marketing Strategy

Social media refers to all channels where people and customers are able to interact with each other via digital media that are public or accessible to multiple users. There are a number of social media websites, each of which has created its own model for enabling people to communicate with each other. Social media sites use content in various forms to build digital communities in which ideas and content are shared and discussion and comments are encouraged.

It is important to keep in mind, when planning a Social Media Marketing Strategy, that consumers will not always react positively to a company’s updates and content on social platforms. Negative comments about a brand and its products are inevitable even on the company’s own social media platforms.

Some companies will choose to exert control over comments on their own platforms and delete those that they feel reflect poorly on the brand. Other companies may choose to allow the negative comments to remain and respond in an empathetic way by offering an apology and/or a solution to issues. Leaving negative comments online, along with the company’s responses shows that the company is open, honest, and transparent. This also provides an opportunity to turn disgruntled customers into a brand evangelist.

It is also important to understand the distinction between “earned” and “paid” opportunities for “sharing.” For example, building “followers” or “shares” through the development and posting of valuable content is “earned.” Alternatively, several social platforms provide “paid” opportunities for advertising and promoted posts in order to share information. Earned and paid strategies on social media are not mutually exclusive and often the most effective social media strategies employ a combination of both.

 

The article has originally been posted at https://www.smstudy.com/freeresources/articles
SMstudy is the global accreditation body for Sales and Marketing certifications. For more details visit https://www.smstudy.com
Important links:
Visit https://www.smstudy.com/dmbokguide/download-dmbok-guide to download the Digital Marketing Body of Knowledge for free
Visit https://www.smstudy.com/certification/digital-marketing-associate for free Digital Marketing Associate certification and course

Various Models of Social Media-Enabled Sharing

“Social media” is an umbrella term that includes web-based software and services that bring users together online and allow them to exchange ideas, discuss issues, communicate with one another, and participate in many other forms of social interaction. With the proliferation of different forms of social media, such as blogs, forums, audio-visual sharing sites, personal networking sites, and professional networking sites, consumers are constantly bombarded with many marketing messages

Social media is important to every business that has a web presence as it can help drive traffic to the company’s website and ultimately increase sales leads and conversions. As well, different social media platforms are more likely to reach certain target audience segments, and messaging can be customized for each platform.

The various models of social media-enabled sharing are of the following content types:

  1. Blogs—Blogs are content created by individuals, groups, or companies to express their opinions, or provide information or insights on specific topics of their choice. The most popular blogs choose topics that are of interest to a large community. However, niche blogs catering to a certain targeted audience can be successful if they dominate the share of voice in that particular subject area. Successful blogs have something interesting, useful, or creative to share, and do that sharing with an engaging style. Blogs may contain images, infographics, or videos in addition to text. In most cases, they are also open to comments from readers. From a company’s perspective, a blog or Rich Site Summary (RSS) feed is an effective means for updating actual or prospective customers of happenings related to the company or the company’s products. RSS feeds use standard web feed formats to publish blog posts and syndicate data automatically. RSS feeds benefit users who want to receive timely updates from favorite websites or to aggregate data from many sites.
  1. Discussion Forums—These are websites used for discussing issues related to a specific topic. Participants in such forums may be asked to register. They are encouraged to ask each other questions, answer questions, and share information. Many forums allow participants to rate each other’s contributions, enabling contributors to build their reputations over time. Some discussion forums may be hosted and moderated by the company, in which case, the company would have some influence on the content of the discussion. In other cases, discussion forums are independent of a company; however, companies should be aware of popular discussion forums in which their products may be discussed and make an effort to respond to customers within those forums.
  1. Professional Networking Sites—These sites relate to people, groups, or companies sharing professional updates, content, and discussions generally related to an organization, a company, a product, or a profession. These sites are used to build an individual’s personal brand as well as to raise awareness of businesses’ brands and their products or services within the online community. Companies share such professional updates for various purposes, such as sharing product launch information, communicating offers and discounts, announcing changes in policies, and sharing media coverage. Relevant and engaging updates can help companies build and retain a loyal base of customers.
  1. Social Networking Sites—These are posts that pertain to people or groups sharing personal updates about themselves or about a topic. These updates are generally shared with friends, relatives, or acquaintances, but they may also be shared with the general public. A company needs to create content or share updates that are relevant, interesting, or entertaining enough for people to share with their personal network, and the content shared should also align with the marketing objectives for a product or brand. Therefore, businesses should focus their social networking site updates on useful and interesting information on subjects related to the company’s product or brand. This channel provides the opportunity for companies to share their brand personality and advertise company events, sales, and discount coupons. The focus of these updates should be on fun and engaging shareable content. Also, companies that have a high level of brand loyalty and where customers relate to the brand strongly may find customers voluntarily creating content or experiences related to the brand, or sharing the brand’s updates.
  1. Video Sharing Sites—This activity relates to sharing videos, audio, infographics, or images with other people. Such content can be shared with any person or group. In most social media channels that are focused on sharing such content, people can vote on or rank audio-visual content or add their comments. Thus, these channels integrate the discussion forum element into audio-visual sharing. For example, on YouTube—a social media channel for sharing videos—users can “like” or “dislike” a video, comment on the video, and reply to each other’s comments. Companies can use such channels very effectively as videos, images, and audio can have a much larger impact on the target market than text updates. Many companies invest in creating engaging and interesting videos about their products, which sometimes become extremely popular and drastically increase brand visibility. Some also create melodies around their product, which can become as popular as songs in their own right or as ringtones for mobile phones.

The features and functionality of social media platforms are constantly evolving as lesser-used functionality is removed and replaced by new functionality. It is critical for the digital marketing team to be up-to-date on the latest trends in social media and to understand how other organizations use social media to their advantage. Marketers also need to be aware of paid opportunities within social media marketing such as sponsored updates and ads, as well as earned opportunities to disseminate marketing messages by organically building followers. Often, a combination of paid and earned campaigns yields the best results.

 

The article has originally been posted at https://www.smstudy.com/freeresources/articles
SMstudy is the global accreditation body for Sales and Marketing certifications. For more details visit https://www.smstudy.com
Important links:
Visit https://www.smstudy.com/dmbokguide/download-dmbok-guide to download the Digital Marketing Body of Knowledge for free
Visit https://www.smstudy.com/certification/digital-marketing-associate for free Digital Marketing Associate certification and course

How to Allocate Budget for Digital Marketing

In all businesses, the marketing team is given a budget that must be allocated among specific Aspects and in turn their related marketing activities, such as television advertising, newspaper advertising, sponsorships, online advertising, and events. The marketing team determines the effectiveness of these advertising channels in enabling the team to reach its target audience and the available budget is divided among these channels accordingly.

The following items should be considered with regards to the budget allocated to Digital Marketing:

Amount of Budget Allocated—This represents the financial resources that Digital Marketing has been allocated by the Marketing Strategy team to use in order to achieve specific Digital Marketing targets. It is usually a specific figure, but sometimes tolerances may be defined to account for anticipated needs and changes. With the allocated budget, the marketing team has considered such things as who the customers are, how they do business and interact with the company, the creativity and costs associated with executing campaigns, and the current consumer perception of the company or brand.

Rationale for Budget Allocation—This involves specifying and documenting the reasons for the budget allocated, which reduces the possibility of irrelevant factors such as personal preferences or politics playing a role in the allocation process. Articulating and documenting the rationale for a particular resource can also save time when new employees join the team or existing team members question certain initiatives.

Availability of Allocated Budget—The manner in which the allocated budget will be made available to the Digital Marketing activities is also defined. Information such as the process for accessing funds, the approvals needed, and the increments in which the budget will be made available during a time period are specified.

The overall budget allocated to Digital Marketing sets an upper limit on how much can be spent for promoting a product, brand, or service through digital media. Therefore, it is an important input for determining which Digital Marketing channels should be used and how much should be spent on each of the selected channels to achieve their respective targets.

Here is an example of Allocated Budget:

When a company has a minimal budget for Digital Marketing, it may decide to focus more on encouraging customers to visit its website through Search Engine Optimization (SEO) rather than spending money on paid advertising. Likewise, it may focus on engaging with customers through different social media platforms, blogs, and forums and growing its contact list for e-mail marketing rather than allocating funds to purchase lists.

 

The article has originally been posted at https://www.smstudy.com/freeresources/articles
SMstudy is the global accreditation body for Sales and Marketing certifications. For more details visit https://www.smstudy.com
Important links:
Visit https://www.smstudy.com/dmbokguide/download-dmbok-guide to download the Digital Marketing Body of Knowledge for free
Visit https://www.smstudy.com/certification/digital-marketing-associate for free Digital Marketing Associate certification and course

How Much Content Is Enough

In social media channels, high quality content is the first priority, followed by content distribution. Companies worldwide invest large sums to create quality content, but in many cases, the content is not distributed properly. Audiences neither find nor share it. A good Content Creation and Distribution Plan for social media marketing will ensure that a company’s content is relevant, timely, and well written and that it reaches the target audience using the optimal means as determined by the digital marketing team.

One of the major debates regarding content creation is between content quality and quantity—how much content is enough and how good does it need to be?

Content creation should ideally start by defining a quantity goal and a publishing schedule with appropriate deadlines. Once the publishing schedule is finalized, focus should be on the quality for each piece of content being distributed.

Some of the different types of content that can be created for the various social media elements are as follows:

  • Status updates—for professional and personal sharing websites
  • Photos—for professional and personal sharing websites
  • Videos—for audio-visual sharing, professional, and personal sharing websites
  • Infographics—for blogs, discussion forums, and professional sharing websites
  • Polls—for blogs, professional, and personal sharing websites
  • Quizzes—for blogs, professional, and personal sharing websites
  • Contests—for blogs, discussion forums, and professional sharing websites

It is also important to note that both the relevance of content and the relevance of type of content depend on the nature of the business. For example, quizzes are more relevant for companies in the education sector than for other industries such as manufacturing or airline.

In addition to good quality content, an effective social media plan must have a good distribution strategy. The content should be shared through the company’s own blog as well as other company pages on various social media sharing sites. Businesses must also ensure that there are ways for their target audiences to like, comment, and share the original content created by the company.

The following figure shows a sample of the structure of a Content Creation and Distribution Plan.

 

The article has originally been posted at https://www.smstudy.com/freeresources/articles
SMstudy is the global accreditation body for Sales and Marketing certifications. For more details visit https://www.smstudy.com
Important links:
Visit https://www.smstudy.com/dmbokguide/download-dmbok-guide to download the Digital Marketing Body of Knowledge for free
Visit https://www.smstudy.com/certification/digital-marketing-associate for free Digital Marketing Associate certification and course