Loyalty schemes are big business. You only have to look at Tesco’s Clubcard, Boots Advantage and Nectar points to see how effective they are at drawing consumers in and creating brand loyalty on the high street.
But looking around the globe traditional loyalty models are being taken on by the mobile revolution. Brands using their mobile channel to target engaged consumers and deliver smarter, personalised deals are giving traditional routes a run for their money.
Fiddling about with coupons and cut-out offers at the till will soon be a thing of the past. Brands that have harnessed marketing to mobile, enhanced by mobile payment solutions, will smooth the way when it comes to redeeming offers at the point of paying.
Putting the customer at the heart of your organisation’s strategy has long been the elixir to business success. It seems obvious, doesn’t it, especially as we’ve had CRM systems in place for more than 10 years now?
However, at a recent event in London hosted by Celerity, data & CRM specialists, big players sat around the table and agreed it was still an aspiration and ever elusive goal for many.
It was recognised that CRM systems that combined digital, mobile and social data alongside traditional touch-points were outstripping those that didn’t.
Names such as Domino’s Pizza, Starbucks and first direct were obvious brands to cite that have cracked the customer service game thanks to their combined approach.
Mobile is changing our behaviour. And the message from a recent mobile marketing event, hosted by ORM London was, adapt to this change or be left behind.
The headline figures: who owns a smartphone (currently 54% of the UK), tablet (21% of the UK) and what they do on these devices (28% surf the net) changes from week to week. The latest in this rapid stream of stats is that more smartphone devices are being activated everyday worldwide than babies being born.
Mobile usage is big and it’s set to be even bigger. Twitter's latest report highlights how smartphone and tablet users are the most engaged consumers. Mobile users are 96% more likely to follow 11 or more brands and 58% more likely to recall seeing an ad on Twitter.
Google even predicts in three years mobile will overtake desktop as the most common way to go online – making mobile marketing more important.
There are many content marketing tools that B2B marketers can use. The most popular is the blog. In Rebecca Lieb’s book, Content Marketing, she says: “No topic or industry is too arcane for a blog”.
She cites a US-engineering company, Indium, that has no less than 73 different blogs…on soldiering materials. Having that many blogs increased the firm's inbound leads by 600%.
But creating original content and finding time to do it is a business' biggest challenge she says. This is also something that I hear frequently too. But as a recent Hubspot report showed that blogging is something businesses cannot afford to avoid.
The ebook is a content marketer's best friend. Not only does it allow you to become a publisher, where you can have your own editorial agenda, it gives you a platform to become a thought leader in your field.
It has the added benefit of generating in-bound leads on a large scale. For instance, Eloqua attributed a large percentage of its new business to the prospects that downloaded a series of its free ebooks.
Whilst writing and researching our first ebook I came across some excellent examples that I wanted to share with you.
In each ebook there are fantastic content marketing techniques in play: tips, resources, ideas, infographics, visuals, links, case studies, stats, how-to-guides. All easy to use and many inexpensive to implement. Check them out for yourself.
Content marketing is about telling a story that resonates with your audience and finding a relevant channel to deliver it.
It’s the loyal followers that then spread the brand message, these days, commonly, but not exclusively, via social media. Well that’s the theory. Getting it right can be hard.
Sometimes we all have to go back to the drawing board to gather ideas and inspiration. For a recent content marketing workshop we hosted, I did just that. I wanted to showcase the brands that are doing content marketing brilliantly.
The world has fallen in love with their smart phones and tablets. People talk about having an emotional connection with their devices. The iphone 5 promo video described it as a “unique relationship”.
Keith Nation from ORM London says this is because: “They are always on you and they are always on”. American advertising consultant Cindy Gallop said at a recent Guardian marketing summit that: “People turn on their phones all the time to get little pellets of love. They want to see that people want to be in touch with them”.
Our appetite for all things mobile is insatiable. Technology research firm Gartner estimates that 70% of devices sold worldwide in 2012 will be "smart devices" (smartphones and tablets). It predicts a total of 1.2bn smartphones and tablets could be sold worldwide in 2013 and forecasts a staggering 39 million to be sold by 2016.
Content marketing is more than the latest buzz word. Done brilliantly it can be a powerful and versatile tool that will engage, educate, influence and importantly win you new business.
With pay-per-click ads on Google eating more of your budget perhaps it's time to rethink and invest in content marketing.
Here I have selected some of my favourite B2B examples that can inspire you to rethink your own content marketing strategy.
Content marketing was high on the agenda in this week’s Changing Advertising Summit hosted by the Guardian.
We know that it’s nothing new and that brands, companies and charities have been doing it for years.
But this week the great and good of marketing, advertising and digital (from both sides of the Atlantic) agreed that content marketing has become a discipline in its own right.
Making new friends and building new relationships when you are an adult is not easy. Anyone who has ever moved house, city or job can testify to this. There are reams of advice columns in magazines about how to do it.
Even the New York Times covered the topic in an article it published this summer. One interviewee stated she had a friend for every segment of her life.
Your website can use this basic principle to make new friends and keep them too. Designing, personalising and segmenting the content on your site for each user allows you to build a relationship with them that will last.