tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/commerce-2 Latest Commerce content from Econsultancy 2017-04-28T10:00:00+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69044 2017-04-28T10:00:00+01:00 2017-04-28T10:00:00+01:00 Five reasons behind Boohoo’s 97% increase in profits Nikki Gilliland <p>So, is Boohoo’s success merely a reflection of the dwindling fortunes of the British high street? Perhaps somewhat, but with other online retailers struggling to capture interest, there’s a reason why Boohoo is head and shoulders above the rest.</p> <p>Here’s what it’s been doing in order to drive online sales.</p> <h3>1. Influencer marketing</h3> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-rise-of-influencers/" target="_blank">According to research</a>, budgets for influencer marketing were predicted to increase by a whopping 59% last year.</p> <p>Boohoo has evidently ramped up activity in this area, with influencer marketing now a huge part of its strategy to target its core demographic of girls aged 16-24. </p> <p>The retailer has partnered with multiple influencers and bloggers to promote Boohoo across popular platforms like Instagram and Snapchat. One particularly successful example has been its collaboration with model Jordyn Woods on a new range of plus-size clothing. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5790/Jordyn_Woods.JPG" alt="" width="650" height="490"></p> <p>The reason it worked so well was not only due to Woods’ personal social media following, but also her connection to other high-profile media influencers like Kylie Jenner and Justine Skye – names that Boohoo’s Generation Z-consumers are likely to be aware of.</p> <p>More recently, Boohoo has also generated buzz from <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69011-jumping-on-the-bandwagon-how-brands-capitalised-on-coachella/" target="_blank">influencers attending Coachella</a> – a festival that typically fills social media news feeds during April.</p> <p>For more on influencers, download these Econsultancy reports:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-rise-of-influencers/">The Rise of Influencers</a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-voice-of-the-influencer/">The Voice of the Influencer</a></li> </ul> <h3>2. Mobile mind-set</h3> <p>Google suggests that <a href="https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/interactive-report/gen-z-a-look-inside-its-mobile-first-mindset/" target="_blank">68% of teenagers now shop via their smartphone</a>, while 63% of millennials are said to shop on their mobiles every single day.</p> <p>Unsurprisingly, two-thirds of online visits to Boohoo come from mobile, with the retailer subsequently taking steps to ensure that the user experience is as slick and seamless as possible. </p> <p>Last year, it launched apps in international markets as well as a new and improved version for the UK.</p> <p>Personally, I’ve always been a big fan of Boohoo’s app. In fact it’s one of the only examples from a fashion retailer that I turn to over its mobile site. Features like the ‘wishlist’ – which allows you to save items to revisit later – are perfectly aligned with the mobile experience, meaning browsing on the app is even easier than online.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5791/bohoo.PNG" alt="" width="250"></p> <h3>3. International expansion</h3> <p>As well as strong UK growth, Boohoo has also seen a rise in profits in international markets, with revenue rising 140% in the US and 40% in the rest of the world.</p> <p>What’s more, the brand looks set to increase expansion plans even further, acquiring Nasty Gal in February – a retailer with a large and existing customer base in the US. Combined with the fact that Boohoo also took over smaller rival, PrettyLittleThing, earlier this year, it looks set to capitalise on these takeovers with further international growth.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Fries before guys. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NastyGalsDoItBetter?src=hash">#NastyGalsDoItBetter</a> <a href="https://t.co/wYGU0PmtrR">pic.twitter.com/wYGU0PmtrR</a></p> — NASTY GAL (@NastyGal) <a href="https://twitter.com/NastyGal/status/856032866492334080">April 23, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3>4. Fast and affordable fashion</h3> <p>Another draw for online consumers is undoubtedly Boohoo’s dedication to fast fashion – meaning the prices are low and the turnover is high. </p> <p>Unlike <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67870-why-asos-is-still-leading-the-online-retailing-pack/" target="_blank">ASOS</a>, which is well-known for carrying a broad and expansive range of designers at a higher price point, Boohoo focuses on stocking key seasonal trends at low prices. While 11% of ASOS products are in the £5 to £9.99 category, this rises to 23% for Boohoo. </p> <p>With consumer expectations rising, and millennial shoppers developing an ‘I want it now’ mindset, Boohoo's business model enables it to deliver a rapid and continuous cycle of affordable fashion trends.</p> <p>Its ‘test and repeat’ strategy allows it to quickly find out what items are selling online before ordering and stocking more.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">This <a href="https://twitter.com/boohoo">@boohoo</a> dress FINALLY came back in stock long enough for me to grab one...Happy Friday!!<a href="https://t.co/xKexqUAbkQ">https://t.co/xKexqUAbkQ</a> <a href="https://t.co/UapfEFbDHr">pic.twitter.com/UapfEFbDHr</a></p> — Halinalinalina (@viechoufleur) <a href="https://twitter.com/viechoufleur/status/850231762961571840">April 7, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3>5. Harnessing social media and commerce</h3> <p>Its product offering is not the only reason Boohoo has such a large online customer-base. Its dedication to delivering high quality service – both pre- and post-purchase – has helped it to retain strong levels of customer loyalty.</p> <p>One way it does this is through social media, using platforms like Twitter and Facebook to communicate and resolve customer service issues. </p> <p>Of course, it also uses social to drive engagement, continually asking for feedback and opinions, as well as offering incentives such as promotions and competitions. </p> <p>Meanwhile, its also appears to be veering into the world of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69041-social-commerce-why-basic-bots-and-buy-buttons-are-not-enough/">social commerce</a>, notably including new shoppable elements in a number of recent Facebook posts. While other examples of social commerce have failed to live up to expectations, Boohoo’s ability to resonate and relate to a young and fashion-hungry demographic could mean that its one of the first to truly take off.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5792/facebook_boohoo.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="392"></p> <p><em><strong>Related articles:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68659-three-reasons-behind-the-white-company-s-boost-in-profits/">Three reasons behind The White Company’s boost in profits</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68472-three-reasons-behind-whsmith-s-boost-in-profits/">Three reasons behind WHSmith’s boost in profits</a></em></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69041 2017-04-27T15:16:00+01:00 2017-04-27T15:16:00+01:00 Social commerce: Why basic bots and buy buttons are not enough Nikki Gilliland <p>It seems that despite mobile commerce rising in popularity – and with one in four users trying to purchase a product on social last year – many brands have struggled to find the right balance between social media and ecommerce. </p> <p>In fact, a recent survey suggests that <a href="http://uk.businessinsider.com/buy-buttons-fail-to-show-return-on-investment-2016-12?r=US&amp;IR=T" target="_blank">45% of adults have no current interest</a> in clicking on a 'buy now' button, while a further quarter don’t even know the technology exists. Meanwhile, many brands are scaling back on chatbots after Facebook reported a <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68868-facebook-scales-back-on-chatbots-what-does-it-mean-for-brands/" target="_blank">failure rate</a> of 70%.</p> <p>So, how can brands make social commerce appealing to users, as well as ensure the process is seamless across channels? </p> <p>This was a question asked at a recent event held by We Are Social, where a number of brands spoke about their previous experience and what they think will be the key to success. Here are a few takeaways.</p> <h3>Most buy buttons do not mirror the user mind-set</h3> <p>While it’s true that users are increasingly turning to social media for shopping inspiration, many brands are failing to realise how big the leap to buying on social actually is. Currently, the reality of social commerce is often very different to the user’s expectations. </p> <p>Caroline Lucas-Garner, strategy director at We Are Social, explained how most experiences involve clicking on a link in a social bio. This then means being taken from the cosy bubble of Instagram to an interim landing page, before finally onto the main ecommerce site itself.</p> <p>That’s a lot of disruption when you think about it, which could naturally lead to users abandoning the journey, or worse – being put off the brand as a result. </p> <p>Similarly, Caroline suggested that buy buttons on other platforms can be akin to a pushy sales assistant, which when you’re simply having a leisurely browse (or scroll), can feel frustratingly intrusive.</p> <h3>Brands in your Messenger inbox feel unnatural </h3> <p>Chatbots are of course another big part of social commerce – we’ve seen many examples of branded bots created for customer service or to drive conversions.</p> <p>But do users really feel that comfortable allowing them into this space? It's an odd notion to see a message from a brand alongside your nearest and dearest.</p> <p>Dominos is one brand that has tried to get around this by creating a character specifically to front its chatbot. <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68184-domino-s-introduces-dom-the-pizza-bot-for-facebook-messenger/" target="_blank">Dom the Pizza Bot</a> has his own unique set of characteristics, designed to urge people to speak to it like they would a friend. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5752/Dom_the_pizza_bot.JPG" alt="" width="658" height="309"></p> <p>Another way to make users feel more comfortable interacting with brands in this context is to establish boundaries early on – even making it clear that a bot has limitations. </p> <p>Sam Poullain, senior growth marketing manager at Skyscanner, explained how his team made the decision to include a ‘talk to a human’ option in its chatbot to point users towards an alternative or next step. This way, it was able to prevent people from abandoning their journey, giving users an option to talk to a real employee instead.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5753/Skyscanner.JPG" alt="" width="740" height="323"></p> <p>For more on this topic, read:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67894-what-are-chatbots-and-why-should-marketers-care/">What are chatbots and why should marketers care?</a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68932-how-we-built-our-facebook-chatbot-what-does-it-do-and-what-s-the-point/">How we built our Facebook chatbot: What does it do, and what's the point?</a></li> </ul> <h3>Brand messaging <em>can</em> drive conversion</h3> <p>For ASOS, a brand that has seen growth of 84% on mobile orders year-on-year – social commerce feels like a natural evolution. It is clear that its target customer is highly engaged on social, with those aged 16-14 particularly overlooking search engines for discovery platforms like Instagram and Facebook.  </p> <p>Morgan Fitzsimons, ASOS’s acting head of content and broadcast, explained how the brand is now taking a three-tiered approach to targeting these kinds of customers – choosing to focus on the top of the funnel to ensure the bottom doesn’t have to work so hard. In other words, this means focusing on the brand messaging – not just the buy button.</p> <p>Its recent campaign for jeans is a prime example of this, using a combination of organic and paid promotion as well as dynamic product ads. An initial video tells the story of the brand but doesn’t include any further links. It instead introduces hints of the shopping experience in retargeted ads, before delivering blatant buying options in the final push. </p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fasos.us%2Fvideos%2F1540714015970588%2F&amp;show_text=0&amp;width=560" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <p>Morgan also admitted that it’s taken a while for ASOS to get to this stage, with previous campaigns on Snapchat failing to follow up with those who first engaged.  </p> <p>Ultimately, she reiterated that success in social commerce lies in continually testing. Only then will brands understand how customers will best respond in this new and unique context. </p> <p><em><strong>Relating reading:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67778-made-com-on-the-value-of-social-commerce/" target="_blank">MADE.COM on the value of social commerce</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67306-is-pinterest-or-instagram-better-for-driving-ecommerce/" target="_blank">Is Pinterest or Instagram better for driving ecommerce?</a></em></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69011 2017-04-19T15:00:00+01:00 2017-04-19T15:00:00+01:00 Jumping on the bandwagon: How brands capitalised on Coachella Nikki Gilliland <p>Last weekend, the Californian desert was home to music, merriment, and a whole heap of marketing - with brands taking the opportunity to capitalise on the ‘coolest’ event in the calendar.</p> <p>Here’s a few examples of how brands of all kinds capitalised on it.</p> <h3><strong>Pop-ups and parties </strong></h3> <p>This year, brand involvement began even before Coachella started, with ecommerce retailer Revolve taking advantage of inevitable excitement and pre-festival buzz.</p> <p>Revolve’s Social Club typically holds exclusive and members-only events, however, it launched a special pop-up shop – which was also open to the general public – a week before the festival started.</p> <p>Selling limited edition items inspired by the festival, its aim was to generate excitement for people going as well as those who might be missing out.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5525/Revolve_social.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="491"></p> <p>Pre-festival events like these are just the beginning of the story, of course, with most pop-ups and parties occurring during the festival weekend itself.</p> <p>While sponsorship is also commonplace at concerts and sporting events, festivals are the perfect environment to go one step further with an <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66908-10-inspiring-experiential-marketing-examples/" target="_blank">experiential marketing</a> approach. Heineken is one example of a brand that delivers an ‘experience’ for festival-goers, using its ‘Heineken House’ concept to entertain visitors and bring a sense of fun along with its brand message.</p> <p>This year, the pop-up included a sustainable dancefloor – powered by the movement of dancers during musical sets – and a free water initiative designed to encourage responsible drinking.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Our <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/HeinekenHouse?src=hash">#HeinekenHouse</a> lineup is finally here, and it's looking like our most impressive line-up yet! You're not going to want to miss this. <a href="https://t.co/SvbMMmEPcI">pic.twitter.com/SvbMMmEPcI</a></p> — Heineken US (@Heineken_US) <a href="https://twitter.com/Heineken_US/status/851438114526695424">April 10, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3><strong>Freebies </strong></h3> <p>It’s ironic that the more famous people become, the more freebies they're able to get their hands on. Coachella is no exception, providing the perfect spotlight for brands for showcase their products, with the knowledge that the images will be circulated in the media and fashion magazines.</p> <p>Meanwhile, luxury brands are willing to give away products simply because the Coachella demographic is exactly the type of consumer they would normally target. For instance, tequila company Casa Dragones partnered with a startup helicopter service to offer consumers a journey like no other. (Yes, I did say 'startup helicopter service'. Moving swiftly on.)</p> <p>Offering free shots to all passengers, it ensured brand visibility at a time when consumers would be most receptive to it. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5526/Casa_Dragones.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="412"></p> <p>With transportation company Tesloop also reportedly offering free rides home from after-parties, it appears companies of all kinds are vying just for the opportunity to have a presence at the festival.</p> <h3><strong>Fashion inspiration</strong></h3> <p>While high-end fashion designers are typically seen at Coachella, high street brands still try to emulate the festival look with items inspired by the event itself – even if they aren’t directly affiliated with it.</p> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66292-how-urban-outfitters-can-improve-in-joining-offline-with-online/" target="_blank">Urban Outfitters</a> landed in hot water last month over its recent Coachella-themed range, so much so that the festival filed a lawsuit against the retailer for exploiting the trademark without authorisation. Free People were also hit with the lawsuit, suggesting that the items falsely implied the brand was an official sponsor.</p> <p>Regardless of the outcome, this demonstrates just how synonymous Coachella has become with fashion, with brands using its name to drive sales as well as directly influence designs.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5527/Urban_Outfitters.JPG" alt="" width="760" height="528"></p> <h3><strong>Social media influencers </strong></h3> <p>These days, brands don’t only want to see their products promoted by celebrities, with some choosing to pay for <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68409-four-key-trends-within-the-world-of-influencer-marketing/" target="_blank">social media influencers</a> to attend festivals like Coachella instead.</p> <p>This is because, instead of counting on third-party publications to cover the event, brands are able to rely on influencers dedicating posts or even entire blogs or vlogs to them. Keihl’s took several beauty influencers to Coachella this year, featuring them on its own social media channels as well as capitalising on their combined audiences.</p> <p>Fleur de Force, just one influencer involved, has over 1.4m subscribers on her second YouTube channel. By working with influencers like Fleur, whose dedicated audience is likely to trust her advocacy, the brand is able to ensure extra visibility and greater authenticity – as well as a strengthened relationship with the influencers themselves.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/os_DqBG6Xm4?wmode=transparent" width="854" height="480"></iframe></p> <p><strong>To find out more about influencer marketing, check out Econsultancy's <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-rise-of-influencers/" target="_blank">Rise of Influencer</a> report.</strong></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68996 2017-04-13T15:22:31+01:00 2017-04-13T15:22:31+01:00 10 cracking digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <h3>28% of marketers still feeling unprepared for the GDPR</h3> <p>With just over a year until the GDPR comes into force, a <a href="https://dma.org.uk/infographic/infographic-b2b-marketing-and-the-gdpr" target="_blank">new infographic</a> from the DMA shows that many marketers are failing to prepare.</p> <p>While general awareness of the GDPR is up, 28% of B2B marketers still feeling unprepared – down just 2% from previous figures. Only two-thirds of survey respondents said their business would be GDPR compliant in time for 2018.</p> <p>In terms of the causes of concern, 37% of marketers said profiling, while 50% said it was legacy data. The biggest was by far consent, with 70% agreeing that it would change under the GDPR.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5442/DMA_infographic.JPG" alt="" width="618" height="324"></p> <h3>Three fifths of marketing graduates have no knowledge of affiliate strategies</h3> <p>Affilinet has been researching how well marketing students are prepared for a career in the industry, with results showing that many are graduating with little or no knowledge of affiliate or performance-based marketing.</p> <p>In a survey, 41% of graduates said that they have studied modules related to affiliate marketing. Out of these, however, 67% stated that the information taught was ‘outdated and unhelpful’.</p> <p>52% admitted that they’d needed to teach themselves to progress in their career, with 22% learning through courses later on. The remaining 26% of marketing graduates said that they still had no knowledge of affiliate practices whatsoever.</p> <h3>Mobile drives digital ad spend past £10bn</h3> <p>According to a new report from <a href="https://iabuk.net/about/press/archive/mobile-drives-digital-ad-spend-past-10-billion-threshold" target="_blank">IAB and PwC,</a> digital advertising grew at its fastest rate for nine years in 2016, increasing 17.3% to £10.3bn.</p> <p>Mobile video is now the fastest-growing ad format, with spend on mobile video ads doubling to £693m. Consequently, it now accounts for 29% of the total growth in ad spend.</p> <p>Insight suggests that the rise reflects the increasing amount of users watching video clips on their smartphones, with two in five people reportedly saying they now watch mobile video more than they did a year ago.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5440/PwC_IAB.png" alt="" width="780" height="480"></p> <h3>Just 13% of employees able to name their company CMO</h3> <p>New research by eShare suggests that chief marketing officers are one of the least recognised board members, with just 13% of employees able to identify the CMO of their organisation.</p> <p>In a survey of over 1,000 UK employees, just 8% were able to identify the chairperson and 14% were able to identify the chief information officer and chief financial officer. In contrast, 36% were able to name the CEO, making this the most visible board member to UK employees.</p> <h3>66% of beauty shoppers use Instagram for inspiration</h3> <p>Facebook and Instagram has revealed how beauty shoppers are increasingly turning to social media to help inform their purchases.</p> <p>The Mobile Makeover Report states that 66% of beauty shoppers look to social media for inspiration on how to achieve their perfect look, 70% for learning make-up techniques and 62% for advice on products. </p> <p>Tutorials are among the most popular types of video, with 74% of beauty viewers watching ‘how-to’ content. You can read more about how mobile is impacting the beauty industry <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68992-three-ways-mobile-is-impacting-the-beauty-industry/" target="_blank">in this article</a>. </p> <h3>41% of UK shoppers will spend more to make Easter special</h3> <p>Savvy has been exploring how consumers will spend their money over Easter, with 62% of UK shoppers planning to celebrate over the bank holiday weekend.</p> <p>In a survey, 41% of respondents said they don’t mind spending more in order to make their Easter celebrations special. That being said, shoppers will still be on the hunt for a discount, with 60% saying they already know where they’ll can find the best value Easter eggs.</p> <p>Unsurprisingly, eggs will be the most popular item to buy, followed by chocolate in general, and the ingredients for a roast dinner. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5441/Savvy.JPG" alt="" width="700" height="452"></p> <h3>62% of ecommerce brands don’t personalise digital experiences</h3> <p>Episerver’s <a href="http://www.episerver.com/learn/resources/research--reports/seven-digital-commerce-trends-for-retail-2017/" target="_blank">State of Digital Commerce</a> report suggests that just 38% of ecommerce brands are incorporating personalisation into their current marketing strategies. Despite 70% of companies using email marketing, only 28% are using triggered emails to re-engage non-converting customers.</p> <p>What’s more, despite the abundance of data available, 46% of marketers admit they wouldn’t be able to create an omnichannel campaign due to a lack of insight into the customer journey.</p> <h3>Paddy Power generates the most social engagements during Grand National</h3> <p>4C has analysed the level of social engagement generated from TV ads during the Grand National. Results show that Paddy Paddy stole the show, with its two ads generating 59,527 engagements from public mentions, retweets, comments and likes on social channels – double the engagement of competitors.</p> <p>SkyBet saw 16,840 engagements and Coral saw 18,733. Meanwhile, despite its close association with horse racing, William Hill saw just 2,812 over the course of the event.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Looking for some guidance on how to pick the winner of the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GrandNational?src=hash">#GrandNational</a>? Watch this video to find out how the experts do it. <a href="https://t.co/27q9DPQJP0">pic.twitter.com/27q9DPQJP0</a></p> — Paddy Power (@paddypower) <a href="https://twitter.com/paddypower/status/850644686096281600">April 8, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3>Consumers see Snapchat as a passing trend for brand communication</h3> <p>A new study by <a href="https://uk.mailjet.com/blog/guide/email-innovations-research-report/" target="_blank">Mailjet</a> has revealed that consumers are displaying a lack of faith in new platforms like Pinterest and Snapchat and their role in brand communication.</p> <p>41% of consumers believe that email is the platform most people will be using in 10 years’ time, followed by 26% of consumers saying the same for Facebook and WhatsApp. In contrast, just 11% of people are certain that Pinterest and LinkedIn will be used in a decade and only 14% are confident that Snapchat will still exist. </p> <p>Despite many brands getting involved, major updates to platforms are also going unnoticed by consumers, with just 6% of people noting Instagram’s ‘buy button’.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5443/Instagram_shop_now.JPG" alt="" width="680" height="452"></p> <h3>Supermarket promotions fall to lowest level in 11 years</h3> <p>According to <a href="http://www.nielsen.com/uk/en/press-room/2017/supermarket-promotions-at-lowest-level-for-11-years.html" target="_blank">Nielsen</a>, supermarket promotions have fallen to their lowest level in 11 years in the UK, with just 26% of consumer spend going towards temporary discounts or multi-buy offers in the four weeks up until 25th March 2017.</p> <p>Nielsen suggests that this is due to supermarkets becoming increasingly price competitive, turning temporary price reductions into permanent cuts as a result.</p> <p>Year-on-year supermarket sales have also fallen, with the late Easter period said to have contributed to a 2.6% decrease in the four-week period to March 25th.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68785 2017-02-08T14:44:21+00:00 2017-02-08T14:44:21+00:00 How Adidas Originals uses social media to drive sales Nikki Gilliland <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">What a trend <a href="https://t.co/Vp78zN8nfL">pic.twitter.com/Vp78zN8nfL</a></p> — meredith faust (@mere_faust) <a href="https://twitter.com/mere_faust/status/822921744512065538">January 21, 2017</a> </blockquote> <p>The brand has come a long way since the term ‘Adidad’ was coined. Maybe this was something that only occurred in my school, but it was used to denote somebody who typically wore unfashionable sportswear or offensively white trainers. Kids can be so cruel.</p> <p>But what’s made the brand cool again? </p> <p>Interestingly, Adidas Originals now has more followers on Twitter than the main Adidas account, cementing its position as a truly cult lifestyle brand. On the flip side, this also proves that it is definitely doing something right on social.</p> <p>Here are a few ways it has made its mark.</p> <h3>Creating hype</h3> <p>Social media is a natural extension of Adidas’s wider approach to marketing, especially when it comes to creating hype around its high-profile collaborations.</p> <p>Since the brand famously snatched Kanye West from Nike in 2014, it has carefully crafted a series of product launches, cleverly building on the rapper's wider (and fanatical) fan base.</p> <p>Tweeting and posting on Instagram in the run-up to shoe releases, the brand creates massive excitement and interest from followers.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">The V2’s Primeknit upper features SPLY-350 in mirrored text on both feet, engineered as part of the knit. Coming February 11th. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/YEEZYBOOST?src=hash">#YEEZYBOOST</a> <a href="https://t.co/Bb5H09LLwO">pic.twitter.com/Bb5H09LLwO</a></p> — adidas Originals (@adidasoriginals) <a href="https://twitter.com/adidasoriginals/status/828630759548317696">February 6, 2017</a> </blockquote> <p>Meanwhile, from Pharrell Williams to Stella McCartney, Adidas Originals is also shrewd in terms of how it collaborates with high profile personalities. Unlike other brands, who might merely use celebrities to front campaigns, Adidas put a huge focus on the personal and direct involvement of influencers in the actual designing process.</p> <p>In doing so, it ensures its collaborations feel entirely authentic rather than purely sales-driven.</p> <p>Again, this is reflected in how it posts on social, continuously reinforcing the core topic of originality and creative and artistic expression.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Strikingly similar. Completely unique. Nothing is original except your true self. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SUPERSTAR?src=hash">#SUPERSTAR</a> <a href="https://t.co/5TyKfEbN4H">pic.twitter.com/5TyKfEbN4H</a></p> — adidas Originals (@adidasoriginals) <a href="https://twitter.com/adidasoriginals/status/827435119375941632">February 3, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3>Giving control to consumers</h3> <p>Adidas’s resurgence truly began with the relaunch of its iconic Stan Smith shoe. Not only did this draw on feelings of nostalgia, but by emphasising its heritage, it also helped to reinforce the brand’s influence on streetwear and subcultures such as Brit pop and hip-hop.</p> <p>The social media campaign surrounding its release cleverly made consumers feel part of the story.</p> <p>The ‘Stan Yourself’ initiative involved asking users to tweet a photo of themselves for the chance to win a personalised pair of shoes. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Stan yourself! Send us a selfie using <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/stansmith?src=hash">#stansmith</a> - the best will get their own personalised Stan Smith tongue logo! <a href="http://t.co/csFEvnVb6k">pic.twitter.com/csFEvnVb6k</a></p> — adidas UK (@adidasUK) <a href="https://twitter.com/adidasUK/status/422704045229219840">January 13, 2014</a> </blockquote> <p>This customer focus has been integral to the success of Adidas Originals in recent years, with the brand aiming to create conversation about youth and street culture rather than simply promoting its products.</p> <p>One example of this is the brand’s recent series of live events called TLKS. Featuring high profile influencers within fashion and music, each one was <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68075-who-will-win-the-live-streaming-battle-facebook-live-or-periscope/" target="_blank">streamed live on Facebook</a>, while giving fans a unique opportunity to relate to Adidas on an experiential level.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FadidasOriginalsUK%2Fvideos%2F1838108906404925%2F&amp;show_text=0&amp;width=560" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <h3>Organic content</h3> <p>Lastly, we can see how social media is not simply a one-way marketing tool for Adidas Originals, but also a way for fans and consumers to show their appreciation. </p> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67547-10-excellent-examples-of-user-generated-content-in-marketing-campaigns/" target="_blank">User-generated content</a> is particularly widespread on Instagram, with fans posting their love for the brand as well as excitement about product launches and exclusive events.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/3713/Adidas_Insta.JPG" alt="" width="670" height="656"></p> <p>Likewise, the Adidas Originals Instagram feed (also with more followers than the main account) typically makes use of imagery from musicians, fashion designers and models to reinforce its tagline of ‘We Are Originals’ – including the consumer in the collective ‘we’.</p> <p>Using influence and artistic expression, Adidas Originals has managed to make its brand relevant again.</p> <p>By delivering its message on social media in a natural and authentic way, it has truly connected with a new and highly engaged young audience.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68568 2016-11-29T11:42:12+00:00 2016-11-29T11:42:12+00:00 Three reasons behind Dominos’ digital sales boost Nikki Gilliland <p>So, what’s behind the boost?</p> <p>Here’s a few reasons why Domino's is still taking a fairly hefty slice of the takeaway market, even in the face of competition with <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68206-ubereats-vs-deliveroo-a-comparison-of-the-app-user-experience/" target="_blank">Deliveroo and UberEats</a>.</p> <h3>Embracing innovation</h3> <p>You might have seen Domino’s partaking in a number of unusual stunts this year. </p> <p>Despite occurring in other countries, many have resulted in UK media coverage due to their innovative and experimental use of new technology.</p> <p>The latest stunt involved a New Zealand couple getting their Domino’s pizza specially delivered by a drone - a result of the brand’s partnership with drone company, Flirtey.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1812/Domino_s_Drone.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="471"></p> <p>Described by Domino's Group CEO and Managing Director, Don Meij, as a way to "avoid traffic congestion and safely reduce delivery time and distance" – it offered an exciting glimpse into the possibilities this type of tech could present in future. </p> <p>In a similar event in Australia, Domino’s trialled an autonomous robot designed to deliver pizzas at street-level without the need for human navigation. </p> <p>While it seemed even more gimmicky than the aforementioned drone example, it still demonstrated Domino’s intent to push the boundaries of fast-food delivery.</p> <h3>Utilising social</h3> <p>As well as large-scale technology, Domino’s has been ramping up efforts to make ordering as easy as possible through everyday social platforms.</p> <p>It created its very own <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68184-domino-s-introduces-dom-the-pizza-bot-for-facebook-messenger/">social media chatbot, Dom the pizza bot</a>, allowing users to order via Facebook Messenger with a single word or emoji.</p> <p>This is not the only example of Domino’s capitalising on its large social following. </p> <p>It’s also been making use of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67808-10-pioneering-examples-of-brands-using-facebook-live/" target="_blank">Facebook Live</a>, recently offering users the chance to win a year’s supply of pizza in a special art-themed online auction.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FDominosPizza%2Fposts%2F10157732659530453%3A0&amp;width=500" width="500" height="646"></iframe></p> <p>Part of its campaign for the new Italiano range, it also allowed the brand to align online and offline marketing by transforming its stores into 'Pizz-Art Galleries'. </p> <p>Both of these examples show how Domino’s is keen to capture interest and excitement in the online spaces that its audience use the most.</p> <p>While it might not have generated many actual sales through Dom, the awareness it (or should I say he?) created was certainly valuable.</p> <h3>Improving mobile </h3> <p>Mobile is big business for the takeaway food market. <a href="https://www.comscore.com/Insights/Data-Mine/How-Food-Delivery-Services-Have-Kept-Customers-Reaching-For-The-Phone" target="_blank">Comscore reported</a> that 11m Brits visited one of the top three food delivery sites via a mobile device or PC during March of this year. </p> <p>What’s more, out of Domino’s 3m monthly users, around 70% are said to be mobile-only.</p> <p>Luckily for these customers, the brand made its website fully responsive in 2015 – a move that helped to <a href="http://internetretailing.net/2016/07/amazon-dash-dominos-pizza-online-changing-takeaway-food-delivery/" target="_blank">increase mobile conversions by an impressive 62%</a>. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1813/Dominos_mobile.JPG" alt="" width="200"> <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1814/Dominos_mobile_2.JPG" alt="" width="200"></p> <p>As well as this, it has introduced even more features to its popular mobile app, such as a one-touch ordering button for extra ease.</p> <p>Domino's also allows users to order via their Apple Watch or Amazon Echo device, taking an overarching ‘convenience-first’ approach rather than just a mobile one.</p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>Despite the popularity of Deliveroo and Just Eat, Domino’s Pizza has retained its appeal to fast-food lovers.</p> <p>Combining an increasingly innovative approach to delivery with a confident social media strategy it remains in a strong position, with the online sales to prove it.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68563 2016-11-25T14:29:12+00:00 2016-11-25T14:29:12+00:00 10 exciting digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <p>Don’t forget to download the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/internet-statistics-compendium" target="_blank">Internet Statistics Compendium</a> for further insight. </p> <h3>82% of young people unable to distinguish between news and native ads</h3> <p>Stanford University has found that young people show a surprising inability to decipher the type of information they find online.</p> <p>In a study on the behaviour of ‘digital natives’, it discovered that most were able to identify banner ads, however, 82% were unable to see the difference between a news article and native advertising.</p> <p>In fact, a number had no idea what ‘sponsored content’ even meant, leading to the suggestion that media literacy should be taken more seriously in schools.  </p> <h3>Black Friday spend predicted to surpass £1.1bn</h3> <p>Analysis from Captify suggests that <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68557-how-uk-retailers-are-promoting-black-friday-online/" target="_blank">Black Friday 2016</a> will surpass last year's record spend of £1.1bn.</p> <p>Based on the analysis of 15bn online searches, it found an 11% jump in people searching Black Friday during the month of October compared to the same time last year.</p> <p>Two key trends have also emerged. </p> <p>The first is retailers offering huge discounts across a greater number of days, and the second is consumers researching as early as August to ensure they get the best deal.</p> <p>Taking both into consideration, it has been predicted that this year’s spend will blow last year’s record out the water. Be sure to come back next week to find out...</p> <h3>15% of consumers paying over the odds due to direct debit</h3> <p>New research from Echo Managed Services has found that direct debit payments are leading to a loss of consumer trust, with many paying out more than necessary.</p> <p>In a survey of 1,000 UK consumers, 15% were found to be spending more than they should.</p> <p>So why is this occurring?</p> <p>Poor customer engagement looks to be a big issue, with one in five receiving a higher than expected bill without any warning.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1768/Direct_Debit.JPG" alt="" width="656" height="421"></p> <h3>Online Christmas shopping sales already up from 2015 </h3> <p>Hooklogic has revealed the first round of ecommerce data from the 2016 Christmas shopping season.</p> <p>The results show significant growth from last year, with the amount of shoppers growing 13.8% YoY and conversion volume rising 1.8%.</p> <p>While the US election delayed proceedings for a while, the rebound was rapid, with a growth of 36.5% in ecommerce shopping on the Friday after results day.</p> <p>Hooklogic also found that mobile is becoming the device of choice for consumers, with a slight decline in desktop conversions overall.</p> <h3>People who share content are nine times more likely to buy</h3> <p>A new report by RadiumOne has found that consumers who click and share content online are nine times more likely than non-sharers to go on to buy.</p> <p>According the research, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67529-the-rise-of-dark-social-everything-you-need-to-know/" target="_blank">dark social</a> is a huge purchase driver, with 77% of converted shares originating from dark social channels compared to just 12% from Facebook.</p> <p>This suggests that brands should pay more attention to analytics that track non-public sharing, as well as offer incentives to the most active sharers.</p> <h3>43% of Christmas shoppers turn to Amazon</h3> <p>New statistics from Astound Commerce show that 43% of shoppers will buy their gifts on Amazon this year, demonstrating the retailer’s long-standing popularity.</p> <p>Despite this, a survey found that shoppers could be tempted elsewhere, but only if retailers rise to the occasion on a number of factors.</p> <p>65% of respondents said that better prices would sway them away from Amazon, while 46% cited special offers and promotions.</p> <p>Interestingly, only 29% say that on par or faster delivery times would prompt a purchase elsewhere.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1771/Amazon.jpg" alt="" width="750" height="499"></p> <h3>Shoppers aware of 9.3 brands at the beginning of path to purchase</h3> <p>When it comes to the path to purchase, consumers enter the journey with a very limited shortlist of brands - this is according to new insight from Quantcast.</p> <p>Research has revealed that shoppers tend to be aware of nine to 10 brands during the initial stages, before narrowing it down to consider just two or three.</p> <p>Finally, they will seriously consider one or two before making the final decision.</p> <p>However, only four out of 10 consumers are said to go on to buy from one of their shortlisted brands, with price, value and promotions being the strongest influences in changing their minds.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1766/Shortlist.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="247"></p> <h3>Marketers choose to represent diversity over brand messages</h3> <p>In a survey of 500 marketers in the UK, Shutterstock has discovered that many prefer to choose images that represent diversity in Britain today - rather than those that align with the brand message alone. </p> <p>Representing ethnic minorities and diverse communities is becoming an important priority for marketers, with 49% having used images relating to this in the past 12 months.</p> <p>Likewise, non-traditional family images are also becoming more popular, with 66% choosing these types of images over traditional ones.</p> <h3>Online search reflects growing demand for Hatchimals </h3> <p>New data from Hitwise has revealed the products that UK consumers have been searching for in the run up to Black Friday.</p> <p>As we reported a couple of weeks ago, Hatchimals retains the title of the most-searched for item, followed by the ever-popular Fitbit.</p> <p>There has also been a spike in searches for the term ‘Hatchimal in stock’, demonstrating the high demand for the toy.</p> <p>With Argos and Tesco recently announcing the appearance of more stock in stores, Hitwise recommends consumers move fast if they want to get their hands on it.</p> <p>Lastly, it is interesting to note that the PS4 Pro is making waves, now up three places to become the fourth most-searched for product.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1767/Hitwise.jpg" alt="" width="780" height="476"></p> <h3>Generation Z shops in-store an average of seven times a month</h3> <p>A new report by Shoppercentric suggests that Generation Z, or consumers aged between 15 to 24, are becoming a bigger priority for retailers. </p> <p>Interesting stats from the report include:</p> <ul> <li>Generation Z shop in-store around seven or eight times a month.</li> <li>62% of Gen Z agree that online shopping is a great way to prevent boredom.</li> <li>70% say that they often browse online with no intention of buying.</li> </ul> <p>For more analysis on this, read our article on <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68554-how-retailers-are-targeting-generation-z/" target="_blank">how retailers are targeting Generation Z</a>.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68542 2016-11-18T14:41:49+00:00 2016-11-18T14:41:49+00:00 10 of the best digital marketing stats we've seen this week Nikki Gilliland <p>Now, let's get on with the show.</p> <h3>Consumers prefer offline channels for communicating with banks</h3> <p>While an omni-channel presence is becoming increasingly expected, a new study by Invoca has found that consumers much prefer offline channels when it comes to dealing with banks.</p> <p>In a survey of more than 1,200 people, 75% said it’s important or extremely important to be able to switch between channels when interacting with their bank.</p> <p>Likewise, 75% of respondents also said in-person or phone interactions were the most effective ways to build a relationship, with just 22% choosing an online channel like email or social.</p> <p>With 80% saying that knowledge of an account history had a positive influence on their decision, the importance of good customer service is evident.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1616/Banking_offline.JPG" alt="" width="650" height="559"></p> <h3>October online sales grow at the highest rate since Black Friday 2014</h3> <p>The latest figures from the IMRG Capgemini eRetail Sales Index has revealed that online sales grew +18.9% YoY this October – the highest rate since November 2014.</p> <p>However, the Index also reported its lowest conversion rate since February 2013, with just 4.1% of website visits resulting in sales. This could reflect the growing trend for browsing, with many consumers shopping around to determine the best deal or discover product reviews.</p> <p>In terms of the sectors that performed particularly well, home goods and accessories came out on top - up +23.9% and +37.7% YoY.</p> <h3>British consumers spend £21.7bn on impulse purchases per year</h3> <p>In a Display Mode survey of 2,512 UK-based consumers, over half confessed to making an impulse purchase each time they go shopping.</p> <p>In total, this amounts to an estimated £21.7bn being spent on impulse purchases every year.</p> <p>When asked if the impulse purchases were necessary, 62% said they were ‘wanted not needed’, 21% stated they thought ‘they might come in handy’ and 16% said they were always needed.</p> <p>The most persuasive factor for encouraging impulse purchases appears to be monetary offers, with 92% citing this reason.</p> <h3>52% of marketers see email personalisation as a top priority</h3> <p>Return Path has released a new report highlighting what makes a successful email marketing program.</p> <p>In a survey of industry professionals, more than half ranked personalisation as their top priority for improving success. </p> <p>Similarly, improving customer retention and increasing customer engagement were also ranked highly, being cited by 47% and 44% of respondents respectively.</p> <p>In terms of barriers to success, 46% said collecting quality customer data was the biggest, followed by 44% who said increasing customer engagement.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1621/email.jpg" alt="" width="650" height="433"></p> <h3>Predicted growth for digital agencies in the UK reaches an all-time low</h3> <p>The latest research from Econsultancy has found that predicted year-on-year growth for digital agencies has hit the skids.</p> <p>On average, the proportion of agencies predicting their business will grow in 2017 has halved in two years, going from 25% in 2014 to just 11%.</p> <p>For lots more on this, you can download the <a href="https://www.econsultancy.com/reports/digital-agency-rate-card-survey-2016/" target="_blank">Digital Agency Rate Card Survey</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1614/Econ_research.JPG" alt="" width="618" height="608"></p> <h3>27% of UK consumers plan to buy online this Black Friday</h3> <p>It’s typically an American event, but this year’s Black Friday is set to become truly global, as UK consumers embrace the opportunity to bag a bargain online.</p> <p>A survey from One Hour Translation has found that 27% of UK consumers plan to make a purchase on Black Friday, compared to 10% who plan to buy on Cyber Monday. </p> <p>While we’re keen in the UK, other countries are less so, with France coming out as the least interested. </p> <p>The survey showed keen interest from 18% of French respondents between the ages of 25 and 44, however there was no interest whatsoever among those aged 45 and over.</p> <h3>Time spent in video and media apps grows by over 210% in two years</h3> <p>Research just released by App Annie shows that app-based video content on smartphones is on the rise.</p> <p>In fact, the global time spent in the Media &amp; Video category has grown by over 210% in the past two years, surpassing the speed at which apps in general are growing.</p> <p>In the UK, mobile data usage for streaming increased by 80% between 2014 and 2015.</p> <p>Likewise, both France and Germany saw a significant increase in mobile data usage for streaming over the past year.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1615/Video_streaming.JPG" alt="" width="720" height="558"></p> <h3>Singles Day results in 44,500 purchases per minute </h3> <p>Figures from Worldpay show it was a record-breaking year for China Singles Day, with Chinese consumers spending more than ever before.</p> <p>The day, which originally began as an ‘anti-Valentine's day’ celebration for single people, saw frenzied shopping activity - peaking at 44,505 payments per minute.</p> <p>The figures also reflect an increase in awareness of the day worldwide, with 38.9% more online transactions being processed globally compared to last year.</p> <p>More specifically, there was an 18.5% uplift in the volume of transactions in the UK.</p> <h3>74% of consumers say social video influences purchasing decisions</h3> <p>A new study by Brightcove has identified the effect social media video content has on consumer engagement and behaviour.</p> <p>The results show a distinctly positive correlation, with 74% of consumers saying there is a connection between watching a video on social media and their buying decisions.</p> <p>46% of consumers said they have actually made a purchase after watching a branded video on social media, and a further 32% have considered doing so.</p> <p>Videos also appear to be effective for increasing positive sentiment - 79% agreed that it is the easiest way to get to know a brand online.</p> <h3>50% of retailers could fail to notice out-of-stock items this Christmas</h3> <p>According to research from Tyco Retail Solutions, half of retailers do not have a single view of their stock levels, meaning that many are in danger of losing valuable holiday sales. </p> <p>It has been predicted that sales could fall by over 8% this year due to dwindling stock.</p> <p>In order to satisfy customer demand, seven out of 10 retailers are actively looking to improve their same or next-day fulfilment capabilities, despite the fact that only 40% appear to be investing in inventory management technology.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/4273 2016-10-17T03:00:00+01:00 2016-10-17T03:00:00+01:00 Social Media Strategy Asia Pacific Best Practice Guide <p>One of the most popular areas of digital is social media. The vast majority of internet users have at least one social media account and the main social platforms boast hundreds of millions of daily users.</p> <p>Over the last few years, though, social media has also started to have a strong influence on organisations. Social media has changed how people work, how they communicate and the relationship that they have with their customers.</p> <p>Adding to this, social media is evolving at a blistering pace. New considerations for social media strategists include: paid ad formats, new visual and video formats, buy buttons, private messaging, social servicing, the quantified self and the Internet of Things.</p> <p>Because social media touches so many areas of an organisation, however, getting it 'right' in spite of all these changes has never been more important.</p> <p>This report follows on from Econsultancy's <strong>Social Media Strategy Best Practice Guide</strong>, published in June 2016, and has been updated with information for marketers who are either based in Asia Pacific (APAC) or responsible for marketing in the region. </p> <p>APAC consists of a wide variety of countries, including such diverse markets as Japan, China, India, Australia and other Southeast Asian countries. The reason for a special report on the region is that, taken as a whole, APAC accounts for more than half of all social media users worldwide and has many of the world's fastest growing economies. Its size and potential for growth has made APAC a very attractive target for brands over the past decade.</p> <h2>This report will enable you to:</h2> <ul> <li>Establish a framework for social media strategy</li> <li>Rethink how brands are managed</li> <li>Review company structure</li> <li>Carefully plan social media strategy</li> <li>Execute within regional constraints</li> <li>Provide measurement</li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/67339 2016-01-22T15:18:09+00:00 2016-01-22T15:18:09+00:00 Three marketing trends to watch in 2016 Georges Berzgal <p>All three have come a long way since they first emerged. <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/10301-to-use-or-not-to-use-personalisation-in-email-marketing">When personalisation was in its infancy</a>, it stretched only as far as automating the use of the recipient’s name in a marketing email.</p> <p>In a similar vein, the shift <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/6415-smartphone-users-are-more-active-shoppers-survey">from marketing mechanics for ‘basic’ mobile phones to those for smartphones</a> offered new opportunities.</p> <p>Lastly, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/2715-will-facebook-s-engagement-advertisements-engage">the arrival of Facebook advertising</a> brought an innovative way to reach consumers. Each of these areas will continue to present new and interesting opportunities in 2016.</p> <h3>Personalisation</h3> <p>Batch and blast is finally falling by the wayside. It’s time to employ real personalisation and the automation that goes along with it to ultimately optimise customer interactions. </p> <p>Is your email welcome series a unique journey for each customer? With messages tailored to the actions the recipient has taken previously?</p> <p>Do you send a message to customers who have just bought to encourage them to review the product? Match their purchase with complementary items and send a 'thank you' and a suggestion? Or ask about their experience?</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/0750/Screen_Shot_2016-01-15_at_10.50.49.png" alt="" width="462" height="376"></p> <p>Shoppers tell you online what they are interested in, both explicitly in email preference information they’ve provided but also directly through their behaviour including purchase history and visited product pages.</p> <p>Be sure to use that information when communicating with them, be it about product ranges, price levels, or offers, in a relevant and engaging way.</p> <p>By continually testing the key aspects of your communication strategy – tone and content, level of communication, frequency – you’ll find the sweet spot for boosting your revenues while adding value to your customers.</p> <h3>Mobile</h3> <p>2016 is the year for getting mobile right, and it is no longer a matter of choice – your customers are there already.</p> <p>Recently, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66141-six-thoughts-on-google-s-mobile-friendly-search-announcement">Google announced</a> its decision to give a boost to mobile-friendly sites.</p> <p>And we all know that customers are increasingly using their phones to window shop, check prices from a store, or park items in a shopping basket for later.</p> <p>Mobile shopping experiences must be inviting, engaging and easy to transact through.</p> <p>Perhaps the biggest lesson for the new year: if you don’t sell a product people order daily or weekly (think pizza, coffee or groceries), don’t waste money developing an app.</p> <p>Your budget would be better spent optimising your website for mobile and mastering the latest in responsive design best practice to improve your customers’ overall user experience.</p> <h3>Social</h3> <p>Every year, we hear something new about social. So what will it be this year?</p> <p>With Facebook selling fewer ads at higher prices, a big advertising spend with the social network <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66346-is-there-a-facebook-ad-bubble">buys only a fraction of what it did a year ago</a>.</p> <p>That’s not to say social shouldn’t be part of your marketing strategy; just be sure it adds value. Your social media investment should build interest in your brand, attract shoppers to your site, and most importantly, retain them as customers. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/0751/Screen_Shot_2016-01-15_at_11.01.39.png" alt="" width="363" height="357"></p> <p>Use your email subscription lists to better understand where and how to advertise on social media.</p> <p>Many social networks offer very powerful segmentation. If you see that a particular demographic is responding to a particular offer, target your social spend on that group of consumers.</p> <p>Then use that information to help refine your ecommerce messaging and segmentation. This will help you stretch your social media advertising budget much further.</p> <p>In 2016, we will see how well <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66989-twitter-s-buy-now-button-will-it-work/">social media buy buttons</a> on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram perform.</p> <p>Recent research indicates that <a href="http://digitalmarketingmagazine.co.uk/social-media-marketing/is-the-social-buy-button-poised-to-take-off/2766">one-third of UK shoppers (32%) are ready to make a purchase via social media</a>, so retailers should start to think about if and how to use it as part of a broader commerce strategy.</p> <p><em>There are many reasons to be excited and many strategies to consider for 2016, but the common thread should be consistency. </em></p> <p><em>Above all, deliver a great, consistent marketing experience that shows you really know your customers and what they want.</em> </p>