Archiv für den Autor: Andreas

Neue Vektor

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Neue Vektor is subject to the idea of »one destination, two routes“: satisfying one particular design demand with identical characteristics such as character set, number of styles, OpenType functionalities and metrics, but doing it so in two stylistically different ways. The later has a double life — the idea of the two variants is not only a stylistic exercise but is most and foremost an array of tools to address multifaceted typographic settings. These settings can be of aesthetic, hierarchal or optical nature.

The domain of physical and digital interfaces profoundly submits to the troika of aesthetics, hierarchy and optics. Equipped with 1000+ characters per style and jam-packed with OpenType features Neue Vektor was specifically designed with complex environments in mind. Environments such as wayfinding, signage, software user interfaces, digital instrument clusters, etc.

Neue Vektor comes in two flavours. Neue Vektor A is an almost monolinear no-frills Neo-grotesque design that captivates with its graphical qualities: closed counters, horizontal stroke endings, symmetrical arcs and organically connected joints that establish the vibrant figure-ground relationship we expect from such a design. Neue Vektor B is the unobtrusive sister of Neue Vektor A. An utilitarian all-rounder with open counters, vertical stroke endings and mechanical joints — all for the sake of clarity and legibility. Flat horizontal curvature and vertical stress make it in particular a good fit for the Cartesian nature of a screen.

The complete Neue Vektor family comes in two variants seven weights each and 28 fonts in total to pick from. Each font file includes no less than 17 Stylistic Sets giving access to alternative letter shapes (I, a, j, l, t, y, &) and a multitude of arrows (circled, boxed, triangular in positive and negative).

Designer
Alexander Roth

Publisher
Neue

Source:: designmadeingermany.de

Five quick SEO wins to give your website a boost in search

Give your website a boost in search - Optimize images and visuals

30-second summary:

  • There are SEO tactics you can apply even without significant expertise.
  • These tactics even the playing field a bit for those who can’t hire a huge team or outsource to an agency.
  • Paying attention to things like images and hosting can give your site a boost.
  • There are simple link building tools that are free and easy to use.
  • Applying these tactics will help you get in the SEO game and give your website a boost in search.

SEO is not easy. In fact, there are around 200 factors that go into determining where your website appears in search results. As such, optimizing your site for search can be a daunting task. Companies hire full teams of SEO experts or outsource the work to agencies to handle the huge workload that can come with executing an effective SEO strategy. Many companies, like yours perhaps, don’t have the resources to do this, however. Fortunately, there are a number of quick wins you can take advantage of to give your website a boost in search.

Try these five tactics to gain some quick SEO wins for your website.

1. Optimize images and visuals

The images and visual elements you place on your site, in articles, on pages, and all around, can be hugely valuable in giving an easy boost to your search rankings.

One example I like to point to is this image on the SE Healthcare website.

Image: SE Healthcare infographic ranking in image searches – Source

In working with SE Healthcare on the company’s SEO strategy for a new product launch, we were targeting keywords around the core of physician burnout. Over time, we noticed that this image actually started ranking. It started showing up for tons of searches for “physician burnout solutions” as a result. And those searches went straight to this image in an image search on Google.

Clicks on this result ended up with shares of our infographic appearing on social media as well as a serious lift in our search results for related searches. And we ultimately found that inquiries about related product lines began to rise as well.

So, make sure you’re doing the following to use images to give an easy boost to your search results.

Add visual elements throughout your site

First, adding images, infographics and other visual elements to your site just creates a better experience for users. Any time you can substitute a visual element to explain a concept rather than adding a thousand words of unnecessary text, it can go a long way in connecting with visitors.

Obviously, don’t eliminate text altogether or your SEO will suffer. But, be sure you add images in articles to enhance the articles. Add graphics to explain product features. Add high-quality images of your products. The list goes on, but you get the point. Images add tons of value to your site, and they can also help you rank in search. Google and other search engines love images.

Where to add images

To give you an idea of where you can place images to optimize your site, try the following:

Representative icons – Add representative icons above products and other elements to pull your visitors‘ attention.

give your website a boost in search - Where to add images

Image: Icons to represent services – Source

Infographics – Drop infographics into articles and other pages to visually explain concepts and add more value to keep readers on the page and scrolling.

give your website a boost in search - Demo videos

Image: Example of an infographic to add value – Source

Demo Videos – These can really boost your ability to highlight your products by showing rather than telling.

give your website a boost in search with demo videos

Image: Demo video example – Source

Visual Coupon Codes – This is a great way to highlight discounts and entice shoppers on your site to make a purchase. Works great for ecommerce businesses.

Add coupons as a visual element

Image: Visual discount codes – Source

Thumbnail Images – Make sure to add thumbnail images for your posts. These will show up as shown below.

Use thumbnail images

Image: Example of using thumbnail images with posts – Source

Images in Blogs – Placing images through your blog is hugely important. You can use a header image as well as images throughout the post to illustrate important points.

Image: Example of adding a supporting image that expands on the info provided in the text within a blog post – Source

These are just a few ideas of how you can leverage visuals throughout your website to enhance the user experience and give your website a boost in search.

Incorporate videos

Embedding a YouTube video into your articles or your pages can really help boost stats like time on page and lower stats like bounce rate. When these stats head in a positive direction, Google will take notice.

Google loves sites that keep visitors‘ attention and keep them on site. A video embedded in the middle of an article can add a minute or more to the time someone spends on your page. And the best part, you don’t even have to create the video.

For example, you could write an article about making Fall décor from egg cartons. Conduct a search on YouTube and find an example of someone doing this, and then embed it in the middle of the article. Not only will visitors read your copy, but they will likely also stop and watch the video, thus keeping them engaged longer.

Insert alt tags

Google is getting better at reading images and determining what they are showing, but the technology still has a way to go. To make sure Google understands the images on your website, you need to place alt tags in each one image upload describing the image. This helps Google determine what the image is showing and whether it relates to a specific search.

Images are super important for helping your site’s SEO performance, so be sure to follow the tips above to benefit.

2. Enhance website security

When you think of cyberattacks, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Whatever answer popped into your head, I bet it didn’t have anything to do with SEO. Many site owners fail to realize the negative impact a cyberattack can have on your site’s search rankings.

Google, however, is paying attention to a variety of reasons. If your website is lacking in security, and Google takes notice, your site could be in serious trouble.

How Google treats cyber attacks

If Google crawls your website and finds it has been hacked, the search engine giant could actually blacklist your website. When this happens, site visitors will see a notice saying something like “This site may have been hacked.” It goes without saying that visitors seeing that notice will likely navigate away from your website and look for answers and solutions elsewhere.

People see this warning and instantly click away, which can seriously damage your site’s stats. Google will undoubtedly take notice, and your site could be demoted. You may not even notice anything until you see a huge drop in traffic or a major rise in your bounce rate and decide to investigate. By that point, the damage will be done, and you’ll be forced to spend tons of time making things right.

There are a number of types of attacks that can hurt your site. Let’s take a look at a couple types of cyberattacks that can have a seriously negative impact on your search rankings.

DDoS attack

DDoS stands for Distributed Denial of Service. This type of attack is becoming more and more prevalent. The cybercriminal will send massive amounts of bot-related traffic to your site, which can cause significant downtime.

This significant downtime can cause your search rankings to drop. Even 15-minutes of downtime can be a negative signal to Google, so just imagine what a whole week could do. For this reason, you need to take steps to avoid a DDoS attack in order to prevent a drop in search rankings.

Bad bots

This involves bad bots crawling your site and scraping content or stealing data. Obviously, you want to avoid an instance of data theft. Just think of all the major headlines that have been made in recent years from companies being hacked and customer data being stolen. A lesser-known bad bot is the content scraper. These bots essentially scrape your content and place it elsewhere. This compromises your site’s originality and uniqueness and can lead to your search rankings dropping.

These are just a couple of the types of hacks that can hurt your SEO. There are plenty more to be aware of, so you’ll want to do your homework and make sure your site is prepared.

How to protect your site

Fortunately, there are a number of proactive steps you can take to protect your site to avoid this negative impact on your SEO. Here are a few things you should be doing:

  • Make sure you have HTTPS setup
  • Install a strong firewall
  • Conduct regular testing to uncover potential vulnerabilities
  • Use multi-factor authentication for your website logins and even for email
  • Install a security plugin
  • Update your website regularly
  • Use secure logins and passwords for your team (and update them regularly)

Doing these things can position you to avoid the negative SEO impact of a cyberattack and help you maintain the search rankings you worked so hard to earn.

3. Speed up the hosting

Multiple studies confirm that faster site speed does indeed result in better search results. There are a ton of factors that go into optimizing the speed on your site, but one simple factor that’s super easy to control is your site’s hosting provider.

Many of the technical things you can do to speed up your site take time and often require an expert. Fast hosting, on the other hand, simply involves making the right choice and then working with the hosting providers to get your site up and optimized.

There are a ton of hosting providers that offer hosting for $2.99 a month (give or take), but often those are shared hosting, which can be significantly slower. To really get the most out of your hosting and truly experience an increase in site speed, I recommend looking at the following types of hosting providers.

Managed WordPress hosting

I start with this because 38% of websites are built using WordPress. It’s my preferred platform, and for WordPress users, managed WordPress hosting can really help optimize your site and give a boost to your site’s speed. I use a managed WordPress hosting provider for my own website.

Managed WordPress hosting often comes with a higher level of support, enhanced security, and obviously since I’m bringing it up here, faster page load speed.

The cost can range from $50 to upwards of $200 per month, which makes this an affordable option for small- to mid-sized businesses.

Dedicated hosting

The name speaks for itself. You won’t be sharing this hosting with anyone. It is 100% dedicated to your organization alone, which gives you a huge boost in speed. Unfortunately, this option also comes with a boost in cost.

That said, if you are seeing 100s of thousands of visitors to your site each month, this option is right for you. And if you’re seeing that level of traffic, and your site is optimized for conversions, you can likely afford it.

This option can cost a few thousand dollars, so if you aren’t quite there yet, it may be something to keep in mind for the future.

As you can see from the graphic below from Section.io, site speed can seriously impact the bounce rate of your website, which is why I stress the importance of the impact your hosting provider can have.

give your website a boost in search - Add infographics

Image: Source

If these options aren’t the right fit for you, there are tons of other options. With shared hosting, for example, you can pay a bit more to get faster speeds. And with Cloud hosting, you get the benefit of lower downtime.

Whatever option you choose, make sure you talk to the hosting provider and ask questions about site speed and how their platform will help you boost the performance in this area. A faster site is an easy way to give a boost to your SEO.

4. Simplified link building

Link building takes a lot of time and effort. You need to conduct research upfront, and then the execution part, including the outreach to website owners, can be quite time intensive.

There are, however, a few methods you can use to grab some easy links and start slowly building up your arsenal of links.

Let’s take a look at two specific ways you can do link building effectively while saving some time and effort.

HARO (Help A Reporter Out)

This is a great resource. Help A Reporter Out, known in the industry as HARO, allows you to connect with journalists who are seeking sources for the content they’re creating.

You sign up for an account, and when you receive emails with a list of inquires each day related to the subject matter you select. For example, if you run a marketing agency, you can sign up for the business and finance emails. If you run a healthcare organization, you can sign up for the healthcare list.

Once you’re signed up, you’ll receive emails each day that list out queries from journalists asking for expert sources like yourself to provide your opinion or advice on particular topics. Those emails will look something like this:

Image: HARO email example

As you can see in the email, you’ll see a one-liner highlighting the subject of the query. If you see something that stands out (a subject you feel you could answer expertly), you can just scroll down through the email and you’ll see the full query.

The full query will have more details about the publication and what, specifically, the writer is looking for. Only answer queries where you truly feel you are an expert.

Once you find something that’s a fit, submit an email to the writer via the email link in the email you were sent. I recommend formatting it something like this:

By using this format, you’ll have a better chance of getting accepted, and when you get accepted, the writer will typically add a link back to your site from your quote.

If you keep an eye on your HARO emails and try to respond to 1-2 queries each day, you will gradually start to get your answers accepted, thus gaining valuable backlinks, sometimes from super high domain authority sites. I’ve personally grabbed links from sites like Content Marketing Institute (80+ DA) and Forbes (80+ DA), among others.

Directory submissions

This is another easy link building win. All you need is the following information, and then you can start creating accounts for various directory sites.

  • Elevator pitch for your business (aka, brief description)
  • Your website’s URL
  • Physical address and contact information
  • Logo or image to accompany your listing

Some sites will allow you to enter more info, but you need to at least be armed with the basics above.

Start with the general sites like Yelp, Yellow Pages, and of course, Google My Business. Get those sites up, and then dig a bit deeper. Your industry will definitely have industry-specific directory sites, so don’t forget to fill out those as well.

By filling out directory sites, you are gaining links back to your website, but you are also setting up opportunities for your profile on those sites to appear in search when your site itself does not.

These are just a couple of easy ways to start building links. Begin with these tools, and as you start to get on a roll with HARO, and your directory sites are all set up, you can move onto more difficult efforts.

5. Check for broken links

One thing that can hurt your site is having broken links littering your pages. If you post a ton of content, it can be easy for broken links to slip past you.

For example, you link out to external posts to provide supporting information to your blog readers. Over time, the owners of the sites you link to may remove posts, or those pages themselves may become broken.

If you have a ton of broken links throughout your content, this can impact your SEO, and it can create a poor user experience.

Fortunately, there are lots of great tools you can use to check for broken links and then correct them. Here are a few options:

  • SEMRush – This is a paid platform with lots of bells and whistles. There are a ton of great tools included, so if you want to go all-in on SEO, start here.
  • Ahrefs – While Ahrefs has a great paid platform, they also offer a basic broken link checker for free. I highly recommend checking it out.
  • Dead Link Checker – This is another free tool. You just type in your URL and the checker will scan your site and point out any issues with broken links that it finds.

Whatever tool you choose, you’ll want to locate broken links and either update them with links to new, relevant content or unlink them. Doing this can help keep your site clean and give your website a boost in search.

Conclusion

Applying these tactics can help you get a head start on your SEO efforts. While many SEO tactics are very time-intensive and super challenging, these four tactics are a bit easier and can give you some quick wins.

And the best part is that you don’t need to be a seasoned SEO vet to execute these tactics. Anyone can set up a hosting provider, for example. And typically, the hosting provider will move your site over to the new hosting, so all you’ll have to do is provide some login info.

And looking at HARO, connecting with reporters for high-quality publications can be extremely challenging. HARO helps level the playing field and gives you access to reporters in a much easier way.

So, get your team together and figure out the best approach to start applying these tactics. If you stay consistent and focus on the end goal, these tactics can really give your website a boost in search.

Anthony is the Founder of AnthonyGaenzle.com a marketing and business blog. He also serves as the Head of Marketing and Business Development at Granite Creative Group, a full-service marketing firm. He is a storyteller, strategist, and eternal student of marketing and business strategy.

The post Five quick SEO wins to give your website a boost in search appeared first on Search Engine Watch.

Source:: searchenginewatch.com

Inside Influence EP08: Srijana Angdembey from Oracle on How Influence Creates Better B2B Customer Experiences

Srijana-Angdembey Oracle

Srijana-Angdembey Oracle

Improving Customer Experience is one of the top priorities for B2B marketers today. With the challenges of real-world experiences from field marketing to in-person tradeshows all but gone, B2B marketers are focused on figuring out how to maximize digital experiences.

Working with influencers has proven to be an effective solution. In fact, 74% of marketers agree that influencer marketing improves customer and prospect experience with the brand according to the 2020 State of B2B Influencer Marketing Report. But how are B2B brands working with influencers to create those experiences?

To find out, I reached out to Srijana Angdembey, Director of Social Media Marketing at Oracle for this 8th Episode of Inside Influence – Interviews with B2B Influencer Marketing Insiders. During our talk, we discussed:

  • How influencer marketing for B2B has changed
  • What it takes to be a top B2B influencer marketing professional at a B2B brand
  • Top challenges and opportunities for influencer marketing during the pandemic
  • How influencer engagement impacts customer experience for B2B companies
  • An example of a successful influencer marketing campaign
  • Advice for B2B marketers that are considering working with influencers and what to expect
  • Trends in influencer content
  • Criteria for identifying and partnering with business influencers
  • Measures of success for a B2B influencer marketing program
  • Influencer marketing after the pandemic and future predictions

Below are some of the highlights of our discussion with the full video interview embedded below.

How did you first start working with influencers and how has it changed?

Srijana: The funny thing is I actually started in policy and working with politicians and policy makers. I was working in government affairs and in a way, I think I’ve always worked with influencers. I’ve always kind of known who are the people of influence or who could influence things to accomplish my goals. So when I jumped into the role of CX marketing, it just so happened that I also got influencer marketing. I felt very natural coming into it. I think the way things have changed now from when I started, is influencer marketing was very much for B2C. Now we’re seeing more B2B companies really embracing it. That’s been the major change that I’ve seen.

What do you think are some of the top challenges and opportunities for influencer marketing posed by the pandemic?

Srijana: Honestly I wouldn’t say that I’ve seen any or it’s not been much of a challenge. We’ve definitely had to tweak our strategy because we rely on influencers for our event marketing. For example, we’ve worked with Matt Heinz on a road show that we did, which was awesome. So we were continuing to do something similar this year before the pandemic, but when it hit, we realized we had to really pivot.

We were doing all these virtual shows and including influencers, hosting and attending, speaking and that was fine. We were also thinking about how we could be more helpful and make our content more relevant for our audience right now? I wouldn’t say that was so much of a challenge, but it was sort of like the guiding principle behind picking up influencer marketing this year and really seeing and working with those influencers who kind of got that.

We also realized that influencers were more accessible now and maybe more available to work to make sure that we have that equal value partnership. So we’re not taking advantage of them but being able to get something done that was of value for our audience.

According to our research presented in the 2020 State of B2B Influencer Marketing report, 74% of marketers agree that influencer marketing improves customer and prospect experience. In what ways do you believe influence has an impact on CX?

Srijana: Gosh, when I think of influencer marketing the first thing I think about is trust. Trust is the currency that makes the experience economy go around, right? We’re all trying to be more more human in our approach to marketing. We’re trying to come across as more friendly and not trying to push our solutions and products as much. But how do we do that?

When I think of influencer marketing the first thing I think about is trust. Trust is the currency that makes the experience economy go around. @srijanaa

I really think that influencer marketing helps fill that gap because now we’re working with individuals that our audience trusts and look up to us as experts. I think that’s the key. I think that’s how influence drives customer experience. Working on anything, content marketing or events with influencers just helps build the trust factor. It also adds credibility and makes everything so much more authentic.

Our research found that 96% of B2B marketers implementing influencer programs are successful in some way. Even with that optimism, 60% of B2B marketers say they don’t have the skills in house or expertise to execute. What advice can you share for marketers considering working with influencers?

Srijana: I think the first thing I’d say is you may not realize, but your company might already be doing some form of influencer marketing. A lot of times I don’t think people know for sure. When I was doing influencer marketing here initially at Oracle, I was surprised to find how many other people were already working with influencers. But maybe you don’t have that strategy in place yet or an official program.

If you set your goals for working with influencers and what you’re trying to achieve with the influencer marketing program, then you can start really slow and small. @srijanaa

I think if you set your goals for working with influencers and what you’re trying to achieve with the influencer marketing program, then you can start really slow and small. It could be as easy as just reaching out organically and trying to build that relationship with an influencer. That’s where you start and really start studying and understanding if this is the right influencer that you want to work with. What content are they producing? Who are their audiences? How are they engaging with them? So I would say start there.

B2B marketing and content expectations increasingly demand experiences, including with influencer content. What are you seeing in terms of recorded and live video, stories, podcasts and even interactive content with influencers?

Srijana: Tik Tok is a great example, right? As far as pushing the boundaries of content.

That’s another thing about working with influencers. I think they’re so good at that. Maybe I have restrictions and boundaries or maybe I don’t have the resources in my company. Maybe I have brand guidelines that restrict me from doing certain forms of content. I’m loving what I see from Brian Fanzo do for example. He has such good stuff like with virtual events that he’s doing. I love that.

Influencers know that the content needs to be very engaging and it needs to hold the attention of the viewer. @srijanaa

When working with Shep Hyken, for example, this year on one of our events, I was just blown away by the technology that he had and the ability to pull in things when he was speaking. He had slides up and had stats pop up and I was so impressed. I think that influencers know that the content needs to be very engaging and it needs to hold the attention of the viewer.

I’m just finding that we’re just getting more and more innovative and as we are exploring newer forms of news and new kinds of social media, for example, it just pushes the boundary even more.

What do you think will be different about influencer marketing for B2B companies post-pandemic? Any predictions for the future?

Srijana: No predictions, but I definitely don’t think we’re going back anytime soon to how things worked or how we were doing things.

One thing that this pandemic really did was make us all pause and kind of look at our (influencer) marketing in a more prescriptive way. „Is this going to add any value?“ @srijanaa

One thing that this pandemic really did was make us all pause and kind of look at our marketing in a more prescriptive way. „Is this going to add any value?“ I think even more so than ever, it kind of made that really clear to us.

I think even with influencer marketing, we became very focused on, is what this person saying aligned to our values and what we want? Post pandemic, I think that’s going to continue. For example, we want to work with a diverse range of influencers, right? Maybe that was already top of mind before, but now it’s even more top of mind because of the current situation.

I think we’re going to be more prescriptive on how we do things and who we align with and make sure that person is not just what they’re saying on social media, but also that they are good people to work with and that our customers really look up to.

To see the full Inside Influence interview with Srijana Angdembey, check out the video below:

If you would like to connect with Srijana further about B2B influencer marketing, you can find her on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Next up on Inside Influence, we’ll be talking to Brian Solis, Global Innovation Evangelist at Salesforce about how influence and thought leadership transcend marketing to become partners to drive business growth.

Be sure to check out our previous Inside Influence B2B Influencer Marketing interviews:

The post Inside Influence EP08: Srijana Angdembey from Oracle on How Influence Creates Better B2B Customer Experiences appeared first on B2B Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

Source:: toprankblog.com

B2B Marketing News: Digital Marketing Priorities, Ultimate CX, B2B Burnout, The Power of Podcasting

Digital Marketing Priorities 2020

Where Do Digital Marketers‘ Priorities Lie for the Year Ahead?
Digital marketers have a clear vision of their priorities though some are working with less marketing resources than others, according to Altimeter’s State of Digital Marketing report for 2020. The report highlights that organizations are either cutting costs as a response to the financial uncertainties of the crisis or upping investments in digital to keep up with customers moving online. MarketingCharts

The CX Courtship: How B2B Brands Get To The Partnership Stage [Merkle Study]
The B2B customer experience should be just as smooth as B2C. But too often it’s not. Indeed, 35% of businesses with 1,000 or more employees find choosing a B2B supplier to be almost a nightmarish process, judging by Architecting The Ultimate Customer Experience, a study by Merkle, with participation from its gyro and B2B International agencies. MediaPost

B2B Pros Say: ‚We’re Burned Out‘ By Pandemic: Study
B2B marketers are falling apart from the stress of COVID-19 and its ongoing impact, according to Revealing What’s Fact And What’s Fiction, a study by RollWorks. Of the marketers surveyed, 50% have suffered from pandemic-related burnout, And 50% say the lines between work and personal life have become more blurred in a negative way. Email Marketing Daily

Google Page Experience Update To Launch May 2021 With New Snippet Labels.
The update will show new basic page performance and expected experience statistics to searchers, Google says. Search Engine Roundtable

How Social Issues Are Sparking Action Among Brands
A majority of consumers now expect brands to take a stand on social issues and work to effect positive change—though their sentiments are sometimes complicated. A June 2020 survey by Mindshare found that more than two-thirds of US adults said brands should play an important role when it comes to speaking out against racial inequality and injustice. However, six in 10 believed brands that spoke out were being opportunistic. eMarketer

B2B influencer marketing budgets 2021

Marketers Raise Podcast Volume to Eleven – The format is poised to become a permanent and powerful marketing channel
With podcast advertising racking up 48 percent year-over-year growth in 2019, according to an IAB study, the medium’s 14.7 percent projected growth in 2020 might seem anemic. But that slowed growth is merely a pandemic-induced blip on the radar. The longer-term outlook remains stellar, with spending projected to rebound almost 45 percent, to more than $1 billion in 2021, according to eMarketer, and marketers and media companies are making big bets on the format’s staying power. ANA

We’re in this together: 5 takeaways from Adobe Experience Makers EMEA
This is a unifying moment for businesses. Across virtually every industry and discipline, business leaders are rethinking their approach to leadership, employees are finding new ways to perform their jobs in a digital world, and consumers are re-evaluating the way they make purchases. Adobe

Instagram Adds Keyword Search in Addition to Profiles and Tags
Instagram has announced an update to its search functionality which will give users the capacity to search for specific keywords, as opposed to being limited to profiles, hashtags and locations. Social Media Today

Executing A B2B Integrated Marketing Strategy: Who and What’s Involved?
7 in 10 organizations have implemented integrated marketing to some extent, though it remains challenging for many, according to Demand Gen Report and True Influence’s report on the state of integrated marketing in B2B. When it comes to the best tools for executing an integrated marketing strategy, respondents cited CRM (80%), data tools (65%), reporting platforms (63%) and collaboration tools (44%) as particularly useful. MarketingCharts

New Survey Says We’re Spending 7 Hours Per Day Consuming Online Media
A new survey conducted by the research firm DoubleVerify found that we’re now spending about seven hours per day consuming online content. In the past we typically spent about three hours per day consuming media. YouTube streaming has sky-rocketed, up 43% since the pandemic started. We’re also even more obsessed with Facebook with a usage increase of 40%. Forbes

ON THE LIGHTER SIDE:

Strategic Planning Cartoon Tom Fishburne
How to do strategic planning by Tom Fishburne — Marketoonist

TOPRANK MARKETING IN THE NEWS:

TopRank Marketing2020 Research: The Current State & Future of B2B Influencer Marketing – Onalytica

TopRank Marketing Blog – Top 20 Digital Marketing Blogs and Their Specialties – Vocal

Have you found your own favorite B2B marketing story from the past week of industry news? Please let us know in the comments below.

Thank you for joining us for our weekly B2B marketing news, and we hope that you will return again next Friday for another round-up of the most relevant B2B and digital marketing industry news. In the meantime, you can follow us at @toprank on Twitter for even more timely daily news.

The post B2B Marketing News: Digital Marketing Priorities, Ultimate CX, B2B Burnout, The Power of Podcasting appeared first on B2B Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

Source:: toprankblog.com

How social media influence 71% consumer buying decisions

Modern customer journey

30-second summary:

  • Due to the rise of online shopping and the amount of time people spend on social media, social media impacts consumer buying decisions.
  • Consumers who are influenced by social media are four times more likely to spend more on purchases.
  • There are four ways in which social media has a direct influence on purchase decisions.
  • Social media and online shopping shortened the customer journey.
  • Social media amplified the impact of social proof or word-of-mouth.
  • Social media influencer marketing is one of the most effective ways to reach your audience.
  • Stories and ephemeral content are a new way to connect to your audience.
  • Every social media platform is different and can be useful for different goals.

A large share of purchases are made online nowadays and in 2020 this number has grown significantly thanks to the lockdown. As the number of internet users increases and tech companies develop more ways to integrate the online world into shopping, online retail is expected to grow exponentially. Logically, many consumer buying decisions are made online as well, and where do people spend most of their online time — on social media.

According to GlobalWebIndex, 54% of social media users use social media to research products and 71% are more likely to purchase products and services based on social media referrals. I bet you yourself made a purchase decision based on what you saw in your feed at least once, be it a post from a friend or an ad that convinced you.

It’s hard to say exactly how much social media influences customers, not just what they buy, but their consumer habits in general. Social networks changed the way we promote products and even gave us new ways to advertise. Let’s talk about some factors that impact customers nowadays.

How social media influences consumer buying decisions

1. The shortened customer journey

The first thing that you notice when it comes to customers on social media is the shortened customer journey. It used to be that people found out about a product, saw an ad on TV multiple times, and next week they may have gone shopping and finally bought the product. Now, this process can take minutes.

According to the Deloitte report, 29% of social media users are more likely to make a purchase on the same day of using social media. That means that once they see a product, they simply click on the link and buy it: there’s no need to wait before they go shopping. Moreover, the same report states that consumers who are influenced by social media are four times more likely to spend more on purchases.

The customer journey is not just shorter but it’s also more complicated now. Social media has made product research more accessible to users. For example, if your customer sees a product on Instagram, they can immediately search the hashtag to look up other reviews and decide whether they should buy it or not. As a result, customers spend more time on research and check more sources for reviews.

62% of customers say they share bad customer experiences with other people. Thus it’s extremely important to keep an eye on your online reputation and seek out reviews on social media. Remember that every review on social media is important — and that fits nicely with my next point.

2. The influence of social proof

Admittedly, social proof is not a new concept: man is a social animal, and we’ve been giving each other recommendations for centuries. The thing is, these recommendations and anti-recommendations can now be heard by hundreds of people.

Recommendations - How social media influences consumer buying decisions

Every time you tweet or post about this amazing cafe or the shampoo that did wonders to your hair, your social media followers see it and might be moved to try it as well. The same goes for negative opinions and rants. As per Forbes, 81% of consumers‘ purchasing choices are influenced by their friends‘ posts on social media.

Moreover, people proactively ask for recommendations on social media (and brands unfortunately often ignore them). According to this study by Awario, only 9% of brand conversations are answers to customer questions, however, depending on the industry, there can be more than 100 people asking for recommendations on social media in one month.

As I mentioned above, social proof mostly impacts your friends and the people you know. But more and more people on social media don’t just follow their friends — they also follow influencers. That’s where influencer marketing comes into play.

3. The power of influencers on consumer buying decisions

Influencers are the social media users that have a robust loyal audience that often shares the same interests. Their opinions are naturally seen by a bigger number of people, people that trust them.

According to a study by the Influencer Marketing Hub, almost 50% of Twitter users have made purchases as a direct result of a Tweet from an influencer.

Influencer marketing - How social media influences consumer buying decisions

Micro-Influencers are especially effective in persuading their audience since they are usually experts in some niche and specific topic, which makes them a natural source of recommendations for this topic. If you’re selling a niche product, finding social media influencers in your niche — Instagram bloggers, vloggers, TikTokers, or Facebook group admins — is a great way to reach your audience.

Gen Z and Millenials are more likely to be influenced, with 84% of millennials saying user-generated content from strangers has at least some influence on how they spend their money.

The influence of Stories on consumer buying decisions

Ephemeral content is a relatively recent trend but it’s already winning over social media users and brands alike. Snapchat was the first to use Stories as a format, but it’s Instagram that popularized it and now boasts more than 500 million daily active users.

Instagram Stories - How social media influences consumer buying decisions

The content shared via Instagram Stories is typically more raw and unfiltered, which allows brands to create a more genuine image. It enables companies to take people behind the scenes and show how they operate, their work culture, and the team behind the products. All this helps to foster an authentic connection to a brand.

So these are the features exclusive to social media that shape customer behavior today. But as you probably know, every social media platform is a little different. Oftentimes, brands wonder which social media platform they should focus on. Let’s go through a list of most popular platforms and see what differentiates them from one another.

Most popular social media platforms

1. Facebook

Facebook remains the biggest social media platform in the world (with almost 1.7 billion users), even though it had its fair share of scandals and controversies in recent years.

The sheer size of the network means that you’ll be able to reach more people on there but be careful — Facebook is not as popular as it used to be. Edison Research’s Infinite Dial study from early 2019 showed that 62% of U.S. 12–34 year-olds are Facebook users, down from 67% in 2018 and 79% in 2017. This decrease is particularly notable as 35–54 and 55+ age group usage has been constant or even increased.

Still, Facebook accounts for 50% of total social referrals and a further 64% of overall social revenue, shows Business Insider.

In 2015, Facebook was responsible for influencing more than half, 52% of consumers‘ online and offline purchases, shows DigitasLBi Commerce.

Lately, the company has been trying to fix its reputation by introducing more control over advertising and data management.

2. Instagram

Instagram is an amazing platform for brands since it gives you so many opportunities to show off your product: photos, videos, Stories, galleries, filters, and more. It now boasts more than one billion monthly active users.

What’s great about the platform is that it’s popular among all generations in all countries. 80% of Instagram users follow a business account. 73% of U.S. teens say Instagram is the best way for brands to reach them with new products or promotions.

Moreover, the platform itself facilitates shopping by adding shopping tags and checkout options to the posts. 130 million Instagram accounts tap on a shopping post to learn more about products every month.

3. TikTok

Although TikTok is a relatively new platform, its rapid growth made it an important source of brand awareness for social media users, especially Gen Z.

TikTok now has 800 million active users worldwide, and 41 percent of these users are aged between 16 and 24. So, if you want to reach a younger audience, TikTok is the place to be.

TikTok’s algorithm is also amazing for niche and specific products since it curates your feed based on your interests. It makes your job of finding new followers easier — the algorithm will push your content into the feeds of your potential audience.

Moreover, TikTok recently launched new ways to advertise on the app, giving brands more opportunities to attract customers.

4. Twitter

According to Hubspot, Twitter is a source of product discoveries for many people.

Twitter's Recommendations impact on consumer buying decisions

Because of its quick nature and ability to connect to basically anyone, it’s a perfect place to ask for recommendations. SproutSocial shows that 53% of consumers recommend businesses or products in tweets while a further 48% follow through to purchase those products or services.

5. YouTube

There’s a debate on whether YouTube is actually a social media platform or more of a streaming platform or content platform. Nevertheless, it’s one of the most popular platforms out there.

YouTube stats on consumption

More and more people are looking up product reviews on the platform. Keep in mind that 80% of people who said that they watched a YouTube video related to a product they want to buy said that they did so at the beginning of their buying process.

If you’re ready to invest your time in creating content for YouTube, it can be a highly rewarding task. Just look at the BonAppetit channel that belongs to the magazine of the same name. It has almost 6 million subscribers and more than 1,3 billion views when the total circulation for the magazine doesn’t exceed 1,600,000 copies in a year.

Conclusion

As you see, the data and our daily experience on the Internet show that it’s hard to argue that social media influence purchase decisions. The impact of social media on customer purchase decisions can be explained by many factors: social proof, the penetration of social media, and the availability of online retail.

However, it’s getting more and more difficult to make your brand stand out on social media. Focusing on the right platform, building creative social media marketing campaigns, and using up-to-date technologies will help you with that.

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Source:: searchenginewatch.com