tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/copywriting Latest Copywriting content from Econsultancy 2016-12-05T15:19:01+00:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68595 2016-12-05T15:19:01+00:00 2016-12-05T15:19:01+00:00 Three musts for online retailers to prepare for the last-minute rush Bart Mroz <p dir="ltr">So for retail brands, there’s no more important time of year. What happens in December often determines whether yearly sales goals are missed or exceeded.</p> <p dir="ltr">Whatever your product offering is, holiday ecommerce is a multi-billion dollar opportunity for retailers.</p> <p dir="ltr">Hopefully your ecommerce business has already fleshed out strategies to attract online consumers and bring in a chunk of those billions. If not, here are three absolute musts for a successful and profitable holiday season.</p> <h3 dir="ltr">1. Stress and load test your website</h3> <p dir="ltr">For an ecommerce business, few disasters are worse than a website crash. One common culprit behind website crashes (aside from the expiration of a domain or hosting subscription) is a sudden surge in visitor traffic.</p> <p dir="ltr">Given that retail traffic increases drastically during the holidays, the proper functioning of your website right now is absolutely critical.</p> <p dir="ltr">Put another way, there’s no worse time to have website problems. It literally equates to lost revenue, which could have devastating effects on your company’s bottom line at the end of the year.</p> <p dir="ltr">So, if your site is unable to handle the increased capacity, find out as soon as possible, because the holiday rush is here. It’s only a matter of time before last-minute shoppers surge online retailers once again. Take action now and preserve your end-of-year profits.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/2078/Macy_s_Christmas.png" alt="" width="800" height="625"></p> <p dir="ltr">Perform a load test to make sure that the website can withstand surges in traffic. Companies like <a href="https://www.soasta.com/">Soasta</a>, <a href="https://www.blazemeter.com/">BlazeMeter</a> and <a href="https://www.redline13.com/">RedLine13</a> offer this service, which consists of, basically, bombarding your website with simulated visitor traffic.</p> <p dir="ltr">If it fails, you’ll need to make necessary adjustments, such as putting a content delivery network into place. It’s better to find out now as opposed to in the middle of the last-minute rush.  </p> <p dir="ltr">The updates will cost you, but it’s much less than the lost revenue that would result from an untimely website crash in the week before Christmas.</p> <h3 dir="ltr">2. Optimize product descriptions and images</h3> <p dir="ltr">Your ecommerce site is only as effective as the content that’s on it, both written and visual. Every product page should feature well-written, easy-to-read descriptions of the product so that shoppers can know exactly what they’re buying.</p> <p dir="ltr">If they’re unsure, they’re likely to search for the product on another site. So do a final pass to optimize product features so that they’re thorough, clearly listed, and prominently placed on the page.</p> <p dir="ltr">Another reason to be meticulous about <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67052-a-copywriter-s-template-for-excellent-product-page-descriptions/">product descriptions</a> is because they can help your website appear in search engine results — important because <a href="https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-09-27/more-than-50-of-shoppers-turn-first-to-amazon-in-product-search">over a quarter</a> of consumers still begin their search for products on Google and other search engines.</p> <p dir="ltr">Make sure to use descriptive keywords early and often, and link between product pages. This improves SEO and also makes it more likely that consumers will see your other product offerings and impulsively purchase something extra.</p> <p dir="ltr">Better yet, use holiday-themed keywords (e.g. “Christmas,” “last-minute,” “present,” etc).</p> <h3 dir="ltr">3. Freeze your website code</h3> <p dir="ltr">If new page templates, new designs, or new features are being developed for your ecommerce website, that’s great. Initiatives to improve the user experience are well worth the effort.</p> <p dir="ltr">But December isn’t the time to implement such improvements. If it hasn’t been done already, ecommerce companies should do a thorough review of each page within the website (especially the product pages) to find errors in the content and the code.</p> <p dir="ltr">Double check that the design is consistent throughout and that the mobile side of your site works as well or better than the desktop version.</p> <p dir="ltr">(And yes, by this point it should go without saying that your entire website should be mobile-friendly. Mobile ecommerce currently makes up <a href="https://www.statista.com/statistics/249863/us-mobile-retail-commerce-sales-as-percentage-of-e-commerce-sales/">29%</a> of total ecommerce, and that’s expected to rise to <a href="https://www.statista.com/statistics/249863/us-mobile-retail-commerce-sales-as-percentage-of-e-commerce-sales/">48%</a> by the year 2020. Google offers this <a href="https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/">free tool</a> to analyze how mobile-friendly a webpage is.)</p> <p dir="ltr">If you discover any bugs or other anomalies, fix them immediately and then institute a <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freeze_(software_engineering)">code freeze</a> immediately. No more work should be done on the back end of the website until after the holidays.</p> <p dir="ltr">In theory, this eliminates the possibility of a developer accidentally introducing a new bug while attempting to improve some already-existing feature.</p> <p dir="ltr">If such a bug were to compromise shoppers’ ability to use the site in the week before Christmas, it could result in abandonment of purchases, which translates to possibly thousands of dollars in foregone revenue. </p> <p dir="ltr">It’s an exciting time of year for retailers, and the advent of ecommerce has lowered the barriers to entry for small businesses that are introducing new product offerings.</p> <p dir="ltr">As ecommerce retailers gain momentum and build customer bases, good planning and preparation can yield big rewards throughout the rest of this holiday season.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68573 2016-11-30T11:01:07+00:00 2016-11-30T11:01:07+00:00 Seven examples of Black Friday email marketing from retailers Nikki Gilliland <p>Following on from our article on <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68557-how-uk-retailers-are-promoting-black-friday-online" target="_blank">how UK brands promoted the event online</a>, here’s how seven retailers executed their email marketing campaigns.</p> <h3>ASOS</h3> <p>Let's kick off with one of the best of the bunch.</p> <p>ASOS executed a pretty heavy email campaign, first mentioning the event nearly an entire week beforehand.</p> <p>While this might sound a little excessive, the emails are still quite subtle, designed to build excitement and get customers in the mood.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1844/Black_Friday_warm_up.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="424"></p> <p>When the real event finally kicked off, ASOS used a discount code with the promise of 20% off all items.</p> <p>Just imagine the regret if you forgot to enter the code at the checkout...</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1845/ASOS_code.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="436"></p> <p>It also promoted the Black Friday offer on top of an existing sale of 'up to 70%'.</p> <p>It's not clear whether the items here were any good, but the email copy sure does makes you want to go and have a look.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1849/ASOS_extra.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="199"></p> <p>Likewise, ASOS's subject lines were nicely done, reinforcing the brand's young and conversational tone of voice.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1846/Asos_subject_lines.JPG" alt="" width="500" height="139"></p> <p><em>For more on ASOS, read our post on <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67950-eight-ecommerce-checkout-design-features-that-make-asos-great/" target="_blank">eight checkout design features that make its site great.</a></em></p> <h3>House of Fraser</h3> <p>Unlike ASOS's strong but subtle approach, House of Fraser went overboard on the emails this year, as shown in the screenshot of my inbox below.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1850/House_of_Fraser_emails.JPG" alt="" width="300" height="508"></p> <p>The actual emails were fine - they nicely promoted the array of discounts on offer.</p> <p>It's just a shame they were sent every day for a week, which could be enough to put off even the most loyal customers.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1851/HoF_email.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="595"></p> <p>On the plus side, despite going down to 30% off, the emails become get more targeted as the week wore one.</p> <p>The one below obviously takes into account my previous interest in womenswear.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1852/HoF_30_.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="544"></p> <h3>Zara</h3> <p>In contrast to the aforementioned example, Zara took a very restrained approach, only sending out two emails in total.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1853/Zara_black_friday.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="613"></p> <p>As well as being underwhelming (in terms of the discount and the creative) - the subject lines were pretty boring to say the least.</p> <p>With no indication of how big the offer or how long it'd be on for, I'd be surprised if it received many click-throughs.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1854/Zara_subject_lines.JPG" alt="" width="430" height="139"></p> <p><em>For more on Zara, read <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67581-six-reasons-i-love-zara-com-and-a-few-reasons-i-don-t/" target="_blank">'Six reasons I love Zara.com (and a few reasons I don't)'</a></em></p> <h3>John Lewis</h3> <p>Surprisingly, John Lewis wasn't very impressive either.</p> <p>Again, with no indication of the amount of money customers might save, it doesn't give much incentive to click through.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1855/John_Lewis_black_friday.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="563"></p> <p>Another thing I found interesting was that its Sunday email - sent when the weekend event was still running - used an entirely unrelated subject line.</p> <p>This was despite the fact that the email itself was Black Friday related.</p> <p>Maybe the retailer was trying to be subtle? It just felt a bit misjudged to me,</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1857/John_Lewis_subject_lines.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="121"></p> <p>However, with John Lewis <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68512-john-lewis-combines-tv-ad-with-snapchat-lens-and-email/" target="_blank">traditionally more focused on Christmas</a>, perhaps Black Friday was deliberately underplayed.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1856/John_Lewis_black_friday_2.JPG" alt="" width="430" height="528"></p> <h3>H&amp;M</h3> <p>H&amp;M's emails on and around Black Friday were strong.</p> <p>With a bold and concise message of 20% off plus free delivery - customers were left in no doubt as to what they could expect.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1858/H_M_black_friday.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="546"></p> <p>Furthermore, I also like the fact that its emails included editorial-inspired content, motivating customers with how they could style their bargains rather than just promoting the sale.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1859/H_M_2.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="569"></p> <p>The only factor that let H&amp;M down was its slightly dull subject lines.</p> <p>Not bad - just a bit lacklustre. Still, at least they're concise.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1861/H_M_subject_line.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="114"></p> <h3>Debenhams</h3> <p>On to Debenhams, and it demonstrated a good amount of variety in its emails.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1862/Debehams_black_friday.JPG" alt="" width="400" height="559"></p> <p>As well as giving customers a heads up on what was to come, it also included original content, such as a 'Top 10' deal countdown and editorial-inspired imagery.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1863/Debenhams_2.JPG" alt="" width="380" height="287"></p> <p>By incorporating more variety into its messaging, it feels less salesy, meaning customers are less likely to dismiss it as Black Friday noise.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1864/Debenhams_3.JPG" alt="" width="400" height="550"></p> <p>You can read how Debenhams' site redesign led to ecommerce sales growth <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66644-how-debenhams-site-redesign-led-to-ecommerce-sales-growth/" target="_blank">in this article</a>.</p> <h3>Threadless</h3> <p>Finally, an interesting approach from US retailer Threadless.</p> <p>On the Wednesday before the event, it sent out this email offering an exclusive 40% off code that expired before the Black Friday deals began.</p> <p>While this might sound like it'd have limited impact as people would just hold out for Black Friday, it's obviously an attempt to foster customer loyalty for the long-term.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1869/Personal_email_threadless.JPG" alt="" width="500" height="454"></p> <p>By using a personal tone - even sending it from the Founder of the company - it is designed to make customers feel valued.</p> <p>A refreshing surprise just before Black Friday hit, it made for one of the most memorable emails of the week.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1871/Threadless_email.JPG" alt="" width="370" height="147"></p> <p>On to the actual Black Friday emails, and Threadless promoted it with a Christmas-themed creative.</p> <p>This could also prove effective for getting customers to think about the festive period (and why they might want to come back again soon).</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1868/Threadless_creative_2.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="487"></p> <p>Finally, hats off to the brand for including an original and humourous subject line in its Cyber Monday email.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/1866/Threadless_subject_line_2.JPG" alt="" width="450" height="123"></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68467 2016-11-01T14:32:40+00:00 2016-11-01T14:32:40+00:00 Nike vs. adidas vs. Under Armour: Email signup & welcome Ben Davis <h3>1. Visibility</h3> <h4>Nike - Signup visibility</h4> <p>Nike barely promotes its email signup function at all, with a solitary link in the footer beneath the store finder on desktop (see below).</p> <p>One could argue that the homepage, with its scrolling, high-quality imagery is more concerned with brand and aesthetics than dry little buttons such as email fields.</p> <p>However there is a skinny slider beneath the header menu that <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66158-how-do-10-top-uk-retailers-present-returns-information/">promotes free returns, free delivery</a> and in-store pickup. If Nike can make room for these, why not an email prompt?</p> <p>When it comes to Nike's mobile site (m.), I can't find an email signup field, full stop.</p> <h4><strong>Score: 1/5</strong></h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0889/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_11.02.12.png" alt="nike email signup" width="615" height="335"> </p> <h4>adidas - Signup visibility</h4> <p>Within a few seconds of browsing the adidas site on desktop, a pop-up appeared, prompting me to agree to personalised marketing messages by email.</p> <p>Whether you like this tactic or not, it's pretty darn visible.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0876/ignup_layover_adidas.png" alt="email signup layover" width="615" height="425"></p> <p>Elsewhere on the adidas site, there is a newsletter signup link at the very top of the page, near the basket and the login buttons.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0882/adidas_homepage.png" alt="nike email signup" width="615" height="310"></p> <p>Finally, every page carries a fairly chunky email newsletter field above the footer links.</p> <p>This field is the only one that carries over to adidas's lovely responsive layout on mobile. This makes sense, because popups are a bit difficult to use on mobile (not desirable UX), and limited space dictates a header link isn't feasible.</p> <p>Overall, you'd have to say that email signup is very visible indeed on the adidas website.</p> <h4><strong>Score: 5/5</strong></h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0881/footer_signup_adidas.png" alt="adidas email signup" width="615" height="328"></p> <h4>Under Armour - Signup visibility</h4> <p>Under Armour has also used a pop-up to encourage me to subscribe.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0886/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_10.09.55.png" alt="under armour" width="615" height="500"> </p> <p>On the site proper, there's a fairly generic email signup field above the footer links. It's not as chunky as adidas's, or as striking, and it doesn't stretch across the whole page.</p> <p>Considering that once users have dismissed the popup and been cookied, this field is all that remains, Under Armour could do better here.</p> <p>Encouragingly though, this field is also present on mobile. Like adidas, Under Armour has a responsive website (I used the .co.uk version).</p> <h4><strong>Score: 3/5</strong></h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0898/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_12.00.44.png" alt="under armour email signup" width="615" height="291"></p> <h3>2. Value</h3> <p>The next factor to evaluate is how well each sports brand website conveys the value of signing up to their emails.</p> <h4>Nike - Signup value proposition</h4> <p>We've already seen that Nike's homepage simply carries a footer link saying 'Sign up for email'.</p> <p>There is no value proposition there at all. It's simply a functional piece of copy.</p> <p>Once you actually click through (curious but not tempted), you get taken to the page shown below.</p> <p>There is some copy here designed to speed me along ('Stay informed with our latest and greatest' and '..get special news and offers..') but I think it's a bit of a poor effort given Nike has a whole page to play with here.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0890/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_11.02.44.png" alt="nike email signup" width="615" height="417"></p> <p>Nike does a better job of the value proposition when you choose to create a Nike+ account, rather than simply sign up to email.</p> <p>The copy below is a bit more exciting.</p> <p>However, we're just looking at email sign up here. So, let's give Nike a score...</p> <h4><strong>Score: 1/5 </strong></h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0892/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_11.34.44.png" alt="nike registration" width="400"></p> <h4>adidas - Signup value proposition</h4> <p>adidas pulls out the big guns. Both the popup and the footer field (reproduced below) offer a gift to those that sign up.</p> <p>'Join us &amp; get a special welcome gift' is a pretty tempting offer to any sportswear fan.</p> <p>This gift in fact turns out to be a discount code, which you might think is a tad misleading. 'Welcome gift' no doubt generates more signups that 'get 15% off'.</p> <p>Semantics aside, this is a massive incentive for people to hand over their email address.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0881/footer_signup_adidas.png" alt="email sign up adidas" width="615" height="328"></p> <p>Once you've entered your email and hit return, you get taken to the page below.</p> <p>It does a much better job than Nike. There's a huge headline that is subtly brilliant - 'Keep up with what's up'.</p> <p>There's another subheader saying 'We want you to be one of us' - again, sharp and inclusive copy.</p> <p>Furthermore, three little green ticks tell us we'll get 'the latest news', 'offers and promotions' and that all-important 'special welcome gift'.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0884/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_11.13.43.png" alt="email signup adidas" width="615" height="366"></p> <p>Lastly, let's look at adidas's header signup button. The button itself says 'newsletter signup' and when clicked, a little concertina form folds out (shown below).</p> <p>The form includes three icons with three reasons to sign up (stay in the know, exclusive welcome offer, special deals).</p> <p>There is little more that adidas could do here.</p> <h4><strong>Score: 5/5</strong></h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0883/adidas_signup.png" alt="adidas signup" width="615" height="314"> </p> <h4>Under Armour - Signup value proposition</h4> <p>Under Armour and its popup try to usher me along by shouting about 'free shipping on your next order' and 'free returns every day'.</p> <p>This is a pretty good incentive, leaving aside that returns are free anyway and shipping is free anyway when you spend over £49. How was I to know that? This is my first site visit.</p> <p>I also like the use of upper case to grab the attention, even if the slogan doesn't smack me across the chops.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0886/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_10.09.55.png" alt="under armour" width="615" height="500"> </p> <p>Once the popup has gone, any value proposition to signup for email is completely lost. Look at the form below.</p> <p>It's an off-the-shelf field and button with some crummy copy. 10 minutes work on the copy would improve it.</p> <h4><strong>Score: 2/5</strong></h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0896/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_11.58.35.png" alt="email signup under armour" width="615"></p> <h3>3. Velocity</h3> <p>This criterion is about how quickly / easily a user can sign up for each brand's email newsletter.</p> <h4>Nike - Velocity of signup</h4> <p>Pretty poor from Nike again. Eight clicks, one new page load, and I have to enter my date of birth, sex and nationality.</p> <p>In theory, brands should ask only for an email address (increasing conversion rate) and gather more information further down the line.</p> <p>Of course, this does enable Nike to segment its welcome emails from the get-go, but as far as velocity of signup is concerned, it's not great.</p> <h4><strong>Score: 2/5</strong></h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0890/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_11.02.44.png" alt="nike email signup" width="615" height="417"></p> <h4>adidas - Velocity of signup</h4> <p>The popup (seen earlier) offers a very quick signup process - I simply enter my email address and hit return.</p> <p>Using the footer field, signup takes a bit longer - three clicks and one new page load.</p> <p>Using the button in the header (see below), that page load is done away with, because the form folds out dynamically.</p> <p>In all instances I am only ever asked for my email address in order to sign up.</p> <h4>Score: 4/5</h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0883/adidas_signup.png" alt="adidas signup" width="615" height="314"></p> <h4>Under Armour - Velocity of signup</h4> <p>Under Armour is the only one of the brands that always allows me to sign up without loading a new page (whether via a popup or one click from the footer field).</p> <p>That makes it incredibly quick. Below you can see how this is handled in the footer field - I enter my address, hit return and I get a little message that hovers beneath the field saying, 'Thanks for signing up...'.</p> <p>I have a slight concern about terms and conditions being rather hidden here, but let's leave that for another day.</p> <h4><strong>Score: 5/5</strong></h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0895/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_11.13.13.png" alt="under armour email signup" width="615" height="337"> </p> <h3>4. Welcome email</h3> <h4>Nike - Welcome email</h4> <p>See Nike's email, split in two below.</p> <p>Firstly, the scalable design leaves the email looking a bit paltry on desktop (with plenty of white space either side, not shown below).</p> <p>I also think the top of the design doesn't mirror the slick Nike branding from the website. The collage of images is underwhelming, and why is a welcome email immediately trying to get me to register again (for a Nike+ account)?</p> <p>Nike should be commended though for adding some extra content in the form of suggested products and a link to Nike videos.</p> <p>I'm unsure if Nike already has some browsing history and has used that to build the suggested products, or it has just taken a punt given it knows my age and gender (extra fields on the signup form).</p> <p>It's not a bad email at all, it's just not a particularly great one either. </p> <h4>Score: 2.5/5</h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0915/nike_email.png" alt="nike email" width="300">  <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0916/nike_email_2.png" alt="nike email" width="300"> </p> <h4>adidas - Welcome email</h4> <p>Looking at the three emails in the preview part of my inbox (see below), I think adidas comes across worst of the three.</p> <p>It's the words 'Online Shop' in the sender, and the 'Experience excellence with adidas' copy that just seem a bit functional and incongruous respectively.</p> <p>There's nothing massively wrong, but I thought I'd mention it. Nike's subject and copy is nicely informal, Under Armour's is motivating, and then adidas is just...'meh'.</p> <h3> <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0893/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_11.05.13.png" alt="welcome emails" width="600"> </h3> <p>But what of the email itself?</p> <p>I've screenshotted it below. All in all, it's pretty straightforward.</p> <p>The imagery is fairly subtle, incorporating street style and more specialised gym wear.</p> <p>The copy reiterates that now I'll be the first to know about new products etc., and there's a button to 'shop now', as well as a category header menu.</p> <p>In the bottom half of the email is my welcome gift of a discount code, and some simple standard links (support, share the email, social profiles and store finder).</p> <p>I think the focused nature of the email is a little more classy and impactful than Nike's, and the imagery is bigger, too.</p> <p>Most importantly, adidas's email is responsive, looking big and bold on my laptop, and fitting my mobile screen well, too. This allows the text to be bigger than Nike's email on mobile and full screen on desktop, too.</p> <h4>Score: 4/5</h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0911/Welcome_to_Adidas.png" alt="adidas email" width="600"></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0912/Welcome_to_Adidas_2.png" alt="adidas email" width="600"></p> <h4>Under Armour - Welcome email</h4> <p>I found this to be a pretty uninspiring boxy email. Again, the scalable format means the email is not as big as it could be on desktop.</p> <p>Everything is packed in, in a jumble of font sizes and colours. The copy isn't particularly friendly or inspiring.</p> <p>Apart from the clear header menu, I think the rest is poor.</p> <h4>Score: 2/5</h4> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0913/Screen_Shot_2016-10-28_at_16.05.53.png" alt="under armour email" width="615" height="626"></p> <h3>Total scores</h3> <ul> <li> <strong>adidas:</strong> 18/20</li> <li> <strong>Under Armour:</strong> 12/20</li> <li> <strong>Nike:</strong> 6.5/20</li> </ul> <p>Well, it looks like adidas wins this one by a landslide. I love Nike's desktop website and prefer it to Under Armour's, but it just doesn't handle email subscription very well (an admittedly niche bit of UX, but one that shouldn't be forgotten).</p> <p>Keep your eyes peeled, I'll be looking at more website features from these three giants soon.</p> <p><em>Subscribers can download <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-fundamentals-of-email-marketing/">The Fundamentals of Email Marketing</a> to learn more about email marketing programmes.</em></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68432 2016-10-20T10:53:00+01:00 2016-10-20T10:53:00+01:00 Black Friday 2016: How are UK retailers optimising search landing pages? Nikki Gilliland <p>Here’s a closer look at the opportunity it presents, as well as how retailers can best capture consumer interest through organic search.</p> <h3>What happened last year?</h3> <p>Despite murmurings that consumers are becoming fed up of Black Friday madness – and some retailers like <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67109-rei-opts-out-of-black-friday-sort-of/" target="_blank">Rei even taking a stance against</a> it - last year’s figures speak for themselves. </p> <p>While online searches in the UK were down, overall sales during the Black Friday period increased by an impressive 62%.</p> <p>Likewise, overall sales in the US increased by 14.3%, and ecommerce sales are predicted to grow by 17% this year.</p> <p>So, we can certainly see that Black Friday still presents a mammoth opportunity for retailers – the key is knowing how to seize it.</p> <h3>Identifying opportunities for organic search</h3> <p>The below chart, taken from a Black Friday report by <a href="https://www.pi-datametrics.com/insights/black-friday-2016-market-performance-report/" target="_blank">PI Datametrics</a>, highlights the most valuable search terms from November 2015.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0504/UK_organic_search.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="492"></p> <p>While ‘Black Friday’ has the biggest search volume, it is only the fourth most valuable in the list in terms of 'Organic Value'.</p> <p>Organic value is a benchmark created by Pi Datametrics. It's worked out as 'search volume X CPC X PPC competition' of a search term or group of search terms</p> <p>On the other hand, we can see phrases that include the word ‘deals’ have greater potential for conversion, proving that it is worth optimising keywords based on this trend.</p> <p>In fact, November is now the primary month for searches around ‘deals’, even overtaking words like ‘cheap’ when used in conjunction with products.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0505/Cheap_and_Deal_searches.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="485"></p> <h3>A missed opportunity for the UK</h3> <p>Interestingly, PI Datametrics has reported how US brands are dominating UK search results, showing how UK retailers are failing to optimise as well as their American counterparts.</p> <p>For the term ‘Black Friday’, five out of the top 10 sites in Google UK are US-based, with Target appearing for a variety of terms including ‘best black Friday deals’ and ‘black Friday bargains’.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0543/UK_black_friday_search_results.png" alt="" width="800" height="435"></p> <p>Again, this points to a need for greater optimisation, with many UK retailers failing to research crucial trends and keywords to give themselves an edge.</p> <p>Meanwhile, US brands also appear to be making the most of data to re-target bargain-hungry consumers all year round.</p> <h3>The best UK perfomers</h3> <p>So, which brands are performing the best in terms of visibility in the UK?</p> <p>Undoubtedly, Argos is head and shoulders above the rest, with a 53% share of the most valuable search terms across positions 1 to 10. </p> <p>Likewise, it is also a consistent performer, ranking on page one for the term ‘Black Friday Deals’ all year round as opposed to during seasonal times only.</p> <p>One of the main reasons for this is that it has a well-optimised long-term landing page, enabling it to capitalise on search interest before and after the event.</p> <p>Moreover, this also allows it to build authority and consumer trust over time.</p> <p>Here’s a closer look at Argos, as well as a few other examples of good (and mediocre) landing pages.</p> <h4>Argos</h4> <p>With its long-term page, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67422-how-argos-models-ppc-on-tv-weather-seasonality/" target="_blank">Argos is a great example</a> of how to optimise for a seasonal event. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0496/Argos_black_friday.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="599"></p> <p>As well as a prominent header, it also includes the repetiton of keywords combined with natural copy and useful information based around the event.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0498/Argos_black_friday_2.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="745"></p> <h4>Debenhams</h4> <p>Debenhams is another good example, capitalising on interest in this year's event as early as possible.</p> <p>While it's not the most attractive, it includes repetition of the core phrase, as well as keywords relating to Cyber Monday and Christmas.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0500/Debenhams_Black_Friday.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="745"></p> <h4>Amazon</h4> <p>Amazon's landing page aims to take advantage of the user's interest in Black Friday by promoting current deals and discounts.</p> <p>It's a fairly dull page compared to the others on this list, but it includes similar information about why Black Friday and Cyber Monday exist.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0502/Black_Friday_Amazon.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="404"></p> <h4>Very</h4> <p>Very's landing page has a great design, and includes a few impressive stats from 2015. Will consumers find this data particularly interesting though?</p> <p>It could perhaps do with a more prominent mention of Black Friday 2016 to reassure customers that more deals are just round the corner.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0499/Very_black_friday.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="759"></p> <h3>John Lewis</h3> <p>Finally, John Lewis raises the question of whether Black Friday should be based around big ticket items only.</p> <p>It is a well-optimised page, including informative content and regular mentions of Black Friday search terms.</p> <p>However, the URL comes under the 'electricals' category, meaning it shuts out interest relating to clothing and homeware.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/0503/Black_Friday_John_Lewis.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="807"></p> <p>John Lewis traditionally puts a big focus on Christmas retail, and <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67161-is-john-lewis-playing-with-fire-with-its-annual-christmas-advert/">its festive TV ads are always much-anticipated</a>.</p> <p>Equally slashing prices wouldn’t really fit with its brand image, so it could be that the retailer prefers to take a low key approach to Black Friday.</p> <h3>Key points</h3> <p>Brands that want to make the most of the organic search opportunity in the lead up to Black Friday should follow a few simple rules:</p> <ul> <li>Create an ever-green landing page and keep it updated.</li> <li>Focus on a variation of keywords including 'deals' and 'bargains' to capture year-round interest.</li> <li>Black Friday isn't prime time for every retailer - consider whether it is worth investing more in other seasonal events like Christmas or Halloween.</li> </ul> <p><em>To learn more on this topic, check out Econsultancy's range of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/topics/search-marketing/">search marketing training courses</a>.</em></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68300 2016-09-20T11:00:00+01:00 2016-09-20T11:00:00+01:00 Specsavers and Carlsberg: why copyrighted words are great brand marketing Nikki Gilliland <p>Unsurprisingly, many are bemused at how such a common verb can be trademarked, as well as why the brand would go to such lengths to protect it.</p> <p>Personally, I think it’s a great example of a brand using words to its advantage.</p> <p>Here’s why.</p> <h3>Capitalising on consistency</h3> <p>As <a href="https://byronsharp.wordpress.com/2011/04/28/logos-and-other-distinctive-assets-rarely-have-meaning/" target="_blank">Professor Byron Sharp suggests</a>, a logo or name is simply an asset that identifies a brand.</p> <p>Through sheer repetition, consumers accept them regardless of their original meaning or context. </p> <p>For example, no one really considers (or cares) why it is called Facebook or where the name Haribo comes from. </p> <p>So, why can’t all the words a brand chooses to use in its advertising be seen as an asset?</p> <p>Instead of changing its slogan multiple times, “should’ve gone to Specsavers” has been a consistent part of the company’s advertising for 13 years, integrated into hundreds of ads.</p> <p>As a result, consumers now accept the slogan and the brand as one. </p> <p>This shows that no matter how a brand advertises itself, consistency is a key factor for memorability, and far more effective than having multiple identities. </p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/3KZeO5oc428?wmode=transparent" width="854" height="480"></iframe></p> <h3>Distinct attributes = distinct brand</h3> <p>Following on from this, the decision to use ‘should’ve’ is part of Specsavers aim to separate itself from the pack. </p> <p>The brand is known for its whimsical and humorous advertising, using ‘should’ve gone to Specsavers’ as the tagline for a farmer shaving his dog instead of a sheep or pensioners mistaking a rollercoaster for a park bench. </p> <p>As a result, the distinction between ‘should have’ and ‘should’ve’ – while seemingly trivial – is actually huge. It is the difference between sounding like every other brand, or the friendly and jovial Specsavers that consumers that know and love.</p> <p>Another company that has also managed to trademark a single word is <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67373-carlsberg-probably-the-best-content-strategy-in-2015/" target="_blank">Carlsberg</a>.</p> <p>Famous for its "probably the best beer in the world" slogan, it decided to put a stamp of ownership on the word ‘probably’.</p> <p>Combined with the Carlsberg design, it has morphed into something so recognisable that during <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67937-euro-2016-marketing-creative-smart-prestigious-controversial/" target="_blank">Euro 2016</a>, the brand managed to get around the law which states alcohol cannot be advertised on French television. The ads consisted of nothing but the word ‘probably’.</p> <p>It was an inspired piece of marketing, and a great example of how brands can use language to truly distinguish themselves.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9271/carlsberg.PNG" alt="" width="526" height="346"></p> <h3>Brands becoming verbs</h3> <p>Finally, while Specsavers have chosen to trademark a verb, let's remember how brands themselves are often verbalised. XX</p> <p>In reality we might edit, search, glue, and video-call - yet we choose to say Photoshop, Google, Superglue and Facetime more often than not. </p> <p>These brands have become part of our lexicon to the point where they are now actions.</p> <p>Of course, we'll never think about words like 'should've' in this way (though we might say the phrase due to it becoming a part of pop culture). </p> <p>The point is, however, that Specsavers still recognises how <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67846-logic-magic-how-to-harness-the-power-of-language/" target="_blank">language associated with a brand</a> can enter into our everyday lexicon, and as a result, is unafraid to capitalise on the fact.</p> <p>While others concentrate on the logo or the person advertising it, the optical retailer fiercely protects the words associated with its brand identity. </p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/w9J_q2OUzis?wmode=transparent" width="854" height="480"></iframe></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68245 2016-09-06T14:49:51+01:00 2016-09-06T14:49:51+01:00 Seven examples of motivational copywriting from fitness brands Nikki Gilliland <p>Many sports companies try to capture a similarly inspiring message.</p> <p>Used to rouse, inspire and, of course, buy into the brand... here’s a few of the best examples of copywriting from fitness brands.</p> <p>And for more on this topic, see:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/topics/copywriting">Copywriting Training Courses</a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67941-10-nudge-tastic-examples-of-persuasive-copywriting-from-charities/">10 nudge-tastic examples of persuasive copywriting from charities</a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64578-11-values-that-create-an-effective-tone-of-voice-plus-six-to-avoid/">11 values that create an effective tone of voice, plus six to avoid</a></li> </ul> <h3>Fitbit</h3> <p>Fitbit hones in on the idea that exercise is for everyone and anyone.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8557/Fitbit.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="533"></p> <p>Placing its product in the context of everyday life, from the walk to work to dancing at a party, it aims to show that getting fit can fit into all kinds of lifestyles.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8559/Fitbit_find_your_fit.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="721"></p> <p>Using ‘your’ in its tagline might sound like a minute detail, but it serves to make the brand sound personal and entirely accessible to consumers.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8558/fitbit_freedom.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="521"></p> <h3>Nike</h3> <p>Citing Nike in a list of copywriting examples is certainly nothing new, but it is undoubtedly one of the most motivational-sounding brands.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8560/Nike.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="594"></p> <p>Instead of focusing on the product itself, Nike uses copy to capture a state of mind. </p> <p>Whatever its current campaign, the brand consistently uses words like ‘conquer’ and ‘unleash’ to empower the consumer, making everything else seem secondary to a positive mental attitude.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8561/Nike_2.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="543"></p> <p>Focusing on the high-quality nature of the brand, it uses a similar tone in its more fashion-inspired ranges, showing that it is intent on being the best even outside of a sporting context.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8562/Nike_3.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="518"></p> <h3>CrossFit</h3> <p>Most sports brands try to sound as accessible as possible in order to target the widest audience.</p> <p>Crossfit, on the other hand, speaks to a very specific type of person – one that is unafraid of some serious hard work.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8565/Crossfit_elite.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="481"></p> <p>Its copywriting evokes intensity, passion and the incredible perseverance required to complete a class.</p> <p>In fact, to anyone who isn’t serious about exercise, it sounds downright terrifying. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8566/Crossfit.JPG" alt="" width="719" height="581"></p> <p>However, by promoting hard work instead of athletic ability, it instils confidence that anyone can rise to the challenge.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Ivan once weighed 375 lbs. He was planning on bariatric surgery when a CrossFit trainer told him he could do better. <a href="https://t.co/FTArKSB7gA">pic.twitter.com/FTArKSB7gA</a></p> — CrossFit (@CrossFit) <a href="https://twitter.com/CrossFit/status/770401149027397632">August 29, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>Lululemon</h3> <p>A brand inspired by yoga, Lululemon is geared around fitness as part of a healthy, happy and positive lifestyle.</p> <p>As a result, its copy encourages consumers to breathe and re-focus.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8567/lululemon_3.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="481"></p> <p>While it’s occasionally in danger of heading into cheesy territory (I’m specifically thinking of its <a href="http://info.lululemon.com/about/our-story/manifesto" target="_blank">manifesto </a>section here), I particularly like its use of unique product copy.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8568/Lululemon_2.JPG" alt="" width="573" height="306"></p> <p>Reflecting the fact that its clothes are designed to be both functional and fashionable, it is deliberately understated and unfussy.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8569/Lululemon.JPG" alt="" width="577" height="251"></p> <h3>Equinox</h3> <p>Gyms can be soulless places, but much like Gymbox, Equinox is a brand that’s intent on getting customers excited about exercise.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8570/Equinox.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="409"></p> <p>It focuses on the gym as an experience, using ‘we’ more often than ‘you’, and evokes the idea that transformation can be achieved through a collaboration with the brand and consumer.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8571/Equinox_2.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="613"></p> <p>Its social media presence is similarly motivational, littered with words like ‘commitment’, ‘potential’ and ‘champion’ to hammer home its message.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">When you train at this level being unstoppable isn't a surprise, it's an expectation. Tier 4, is now Tier X. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/EQXPT?src=hash">#EQXPT</a> <a href="https://t.co/HYEIwWL8lF">pic.twitter.com/HYEIwWL8lF</a></p> — Equinox (@Equinox) <a href="https://twitter.com/Equinox/status/766627581898678272">August 19, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>Under Armour</h3> <p>With its tagline of “It’s what you do in the dark that puts you in the light” – Under Armour tells the story of the underdog.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8572/Under_Armour_story.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="585"></p> <p>Instead of focusing on the final results, it promotes greatness as something that’s found in day-to-day hard graft. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8575/under_armour_insta.JPG" alt="" width="595" height="588"></p> <p>It is also a great example of a brand that embraces the unique and specific style of all sports, especially on social media.</p> <p>Whether it’s talking about rugby or weightlifting, it manages to get fans from all walks of life engaged and inspired. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Difference is everything. New 2016/17 Armour, out now. <a href="https://twitter.com/WaspsRugby">@WaspsRugby</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/IWILL?src=hash">#IWILL</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BreakTheMould?src=hash">#BreakTheMould</a> <a href="https://t.co/woUiLafZq9">pic.twitter.com/woUiLafZq9</a></p> — Under Armour UK (@UnderArmourUK) <a href="https://twitter.com/UnderArmourUK/status/756398878962900992">July 22, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>Tough Mudder</h3> <p>How tough are you? This is the question that encapsulates Tough Mudder’s deliberately provocative <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65198-a-simple-tip-for-improving-your-brand-tone-of-voice-guidelines/">tone of voice</a>. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8576/how_tough_are_you.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="781"></p> <p>From the simple ‘ready?’ call-to-action to the ‘Do good. Feel good’ tagline – it sounds like a mate that’s daring you to take up the challenge. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8577/tough_mudder_2.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="500"></p> <p>Tough Mudder's copy is much like the experience itself, unrelenting and insistent, but with its focus on community and team-building, it is simultaneously empowering.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8578/Tougher_Together.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="522"></p> <p>Finally, it is one of the few sports brands that uses a lighter and occasionally humorous approach. </p> <p>Here, it aims to give consumers even more incentive than the thought of crossing the finish line.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8579/Tough_Mudder.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="473"></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68235 2016-08-31T11:39:44+01:00 2016-08-31T11:39:44+01:00 A closer look at the National Trust's content strategy Nikki Gilliland <p>But how exactly did the organisation manage such a big overhaul of its content? </p> <p>We recently sat down with Tom Barker, Head of Digital for the National Trust, to hear how his team planned and executed <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/digital-content-strategy/">a winning content strategy</a>.</p> <p>You can read a summary of what he said below, or watch these videos to see what he said in full.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/fiN494itqa0?list=PL1-kPkZBw50G5af50RWyZQktGWjOkGxLI&amp;wmode=transparent" width="854" height="480"></iframe></p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/IAz4146xkO4?list=PL1-kPkZBw50G5af50RWyZQktGWjOkGxLI&amp;wmode=transparent" width="854" height="480"></iframe></p> <h3>Out with the old</h3> <p>The National Trust’s new website launched in November of 2015, but involved months of planning and preparation prior to this.</p> <p>With an old and clunky website consisting of around 50,000 pages, the challenge was finding a way to condense such a large volume of information into a concise and user-friendly amount. </p> <p>Even after stripping out a large portion of the old site, it re-launched with the hefty sum of 9,000 pages. </p> <blockquote> <p>If you think not just about our national cause and the various elements of membership and fundraising, but the sheer number of places we have.</p> <p>So, that’s over 350 properties, 200 more major pieces of outdoor landscape and coastline... it becomes a huge website with lots of content.</p> </blockquote> <h3>Updating the new site</h3> <p>As well as the amount that needed to be included, Tom highlights how the seasonal nature of the Trust requires content to be continuously updated and refreshed. </p> <p>For the launch of its new site, 500 National Trust employees were trained on the content management system to ensure that content would be ready by launch day, as well as updated according to seasonal calendars. </p> <blockquote> <p>We have a distributed marketing model, so for each of the seven regions that the National Trust covers we have a regional digital lead, but also web editors at each of the properties and places.</p> </blockquote> <p>With news featuring heavily on the site, it is imperative that staff are able to update at a property-level as quickly and seamlessly as possible.</p> <h3>How success is measured</h3> <p>With a brand new site, the National Trust now has a far superior analytics set-up. However, despite knowing how it is being used, it is yet to discover who is using it. </p> <p>A new sign-in capability will be added later in the year, and is going to be a big focus in future.</p> <blockquote> <p>Success for me, yes it could be the traditional metrics such as visits to the site and bounce rate etc.</p> <p>But when we are able to see who is using it, we can determine whether the touchpoints match up, which means no longer means having a website or mobile app that exists in silo.</p> </blockquote> <p>For the National Trust, a seamless user experience across all channels is the ultimate sign of success. </p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:TrainingDate/3036 2016-08-12T15:35:10+01:00 2016-08-12T15:35:10+01:00 Online Copywriting <p>Boost your online copy’s effectiveness (across all types of device) with our practical and hands-on training course.  </p> <p>Our best-selling ‘online copywriting’ course includes lots of hands-on exercises to help you communicate, persuade and sell more effectively.  We’ll show you copywriting techniques that can boost your web pages’ performance by over 100%.</p> <p style="vertical-align: baseline; background-image: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-size: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial;">No laptop is required.  For convenience, all exercises will be paper-based.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/67952 2016-06-16T09:39:00+01:00 2016-06-16T09:39:00+01:00 Five tourism websites guaranteed to give you wanderlust Nikki Gilliland <p>Number one: That New York would invest so heavily into promoting an already highly-desirable travel destination.</p> <p>Number two: Do people even use tourism websites anymore?</p> <p>With most hotel and travel companies providing all the information you need, from transport links to ‘things to do’, it’s easy to assume tourism websites might be overshadowed or left a little forgotten.</p> <p>But as <a href="http://www.nycgo.com/" target="_blank">NYCGo</a> demonstrates, it appears they're having somewhat of a resurgence. </p> <p>Here are five more examples of sites that have been quietly producing some of the most slick and engaging content around.</p> <p>(Don’t blame me if you end up booking a flight somewhere after.)</p> <h3><strong>Visit Finland</strong></h3> <p>Never mind the country, visiting ‘<a href="http://www.visitfinland.com/">The Official Travel Guide of Finland</a>’ is a damn fine experience in itself.</p> <p>Chock full of stunning imagery and easy-to-digest copy, it’s one of those websites that you can easily get lost in for a while.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6052/Visit_Finland.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="421"></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6068/Visit_Finland_2.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="554"></p> <p>One feature I particularly enjoyed was the Finngenerator – a name generator designed to reflect the mythological culture of the country. </p> <p>Sure, it’s pretty pointless, yet it’s little touches like this that elevate an otherwise stagnant website into something unique. </p> <p>Instead of simply offering information, it succeeds in getting the user involved, and consequently, much more engaged.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6053/Finngenerator.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="470"></p> <h3><strong>The Swedish Number</strong></h3> <p>Another Scandinavian country that's producing exciting content, Sweden is even more bold when it comes to executing campaigns. </p> <p>Introduced to mark 250 years since the abolishment of censorship, it recently launched ‘<a href="http://theswedishnumber.com/">The Swedish Number</a>’ – the country's very own telephone number.</p> <p>Whether it’s to enquire about the Northern Lights or what they had for breakfast, the idea is that you can call up and speak to a random Swede about whatever you fancy.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6054/The_Swedish_Number.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="441"></p> <p>The website itself is brilliantly designed, using lots of informative copy and cool stats to back up what is undoubtedly a pretty risky idea.</p> <p>While the campaign could be seen as more of a gimmick than a valuable source of information, it’s still a brilliantly original way of increasing awareness about a particular place.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6055/Swede_Number.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="363"></p> <h3><strong>You Might Like Oregon</strong></h3> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67268-how-to-achieve-the-right-tone-of-voice-for-your-brand/">Tone of voice</a> is always a tricky thing to determine, but when it comes to tourism, it’s all the more difficult.</p> <p>How is it possible to decide what an entire country should sound like? For smaller locations like cities or states at least, it’s a little easier.</p> <p>Oregon is a great example of how to do it well. The <a href="http://traveloregon.com/trip-ideas/oregon-stories/you-might-like-oregon/">website itself</a> is full of top-notch content, yet the aspect that stands out the most is its consistent and distinct tone. </p> <p>Deliberately self-effacing, it comes off as both personal and humorous.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6071/Oregon.PNG" alt="" width="594" height="512"></p> <p>Using the tagline “We like it here. You might too”, its series of short and tongue-in-cheek videos further reflects the site’s distinct style. </p> <p>Alongside its beautiful design, Travel Oregon is a great example of how a consistent and confident tone of voice can be an excellent groundwork from which to build content.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/PRnJLgzpN5I?wmode=transparent" width="960" height="540"></iframe></p> <h3><strong>Discover Northern Ireland</strong></h3> <p>Forget stunning architecture or ancient tradition. Tourism Ireland knows that the mere mention of Game of Thrones is enough to spark a <em>lot</em> of interest.</p> <p>Using the fact that the TV series has been filmed in multiple locations across Northern Ireland, it has created its very own ‘<a href="http://www.ireland.com/en-gb/what-is-available/ireland-on-screen/game-of-thrones/destinations/northern-ireland/county-antrim/">Explore Game of Thrones</a>’ hub.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6061/Northern_Ireland_1.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="399"></p> <p>Including quizzes and fun trivia about the filming locations as well as lots of in-depth information, it is a clever example of how popular culture can capture the imagination.</p> <p>By encouraging users to get involved in a host of GOT-inspired activities, it also shows a side of the country that many people might not have discovered otherwise.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6062/Northern_Ireland.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="534"></p> <h3><strong>Explore Australia</strong></h3> <p>Looking at beautiful photos is usually enough to inspire a bit of wanderlust, but <a href="http://www.australia.com/en-gb">Australia.com’s</a> series of immersive videos guarantees it.</p> <p>From swimming in the Great Barrier Reef to watching a sunset over Sydney Harbour Bridge, each video gives a complete 360-degree view of an experience, offering the viewer insight into what it's actually like to be there.</p> <p>Even better, the videos are also compatible with Google Cardboard to further emphasise the immersive experience.</p> <p>While the rest of Australia’s tourism site is full of similarly jaw-dropping content, these videos show how <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66614-will-virtual-reality-revolutionise-the-travel-industry/">travel and VR</a> truly are a match made in heaven. </p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/8GmOFCzMeQ0?wmode=transparent" width="854" height="480"></iframe></p> <p><em><strong>Have you worked on an award-worthy marketing project in the Travel &amp; Leisure sector this year?</strong></em></p> <p><em><strong>If so, make sure to enter Econsultancy’s <a href="http://www.festivalofmarketing.com/awards/categories?utm_source=econsultancy&amp;utm_medium=blog&amp;utm_campaign=econ%20blog">Masters of Marketing Awards</a> before June 17.</strong></em></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/67953 2016-06-15T11:36:40+01:00 2016-06-15T11:36:40+01:00 How Lush Cosmetics uses word-of-mouth marketing Nikki Gilliland <p>After all, it is a retailer that does not advertise on traditional media, nor is it totally mainstream like its rival the Body Shop.</p> <p>But now with a three-storey flagship slap-bang in the middle of Oxford Street, Lush certainly appears to be making the most of its cult following.</p> <p>On the back of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67158-why-lush-is-the-undisputed-master-of-b-commerce/">last year’s website comparison</a>, and in the run up to the <a href="http://www.festivalofmarketing.com/awards/categories?utm_source=econsultancy&amp;utm_medium=blog&amp;utm_campaign=econ%20blog">Masters of Marketing</a> (deadline for entry this Friday, June 17th), we thought we’d take a look at how Lush has gone from a small ethical cosmetics company to a high street behemoth.</p> <p>Here are four ways Lush has executed a winning <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/digital-content-strategy/">content strategy</a> through non-traditional methods.</p> <h3>Brand values and identity</h3> <p>Since it first began in 1995, Lush has always prided itself on its ethical principles.</p> <p>From minimal packaging to protests against animal testing – it has become just as well-known for its charitable endeavours as its use of organic ingredients.</p> <p>Undoubtedly, these core values of honesty and positivity have enabled the brand to build a large and loyal fan base. </p> <p>As well as promoting good causes, Lush also practices what it preaches, with 100% of the earnings from its ‘charity pot’ body cream going to environmental, animal protection and human rights organisations.</p> <p>Similarly, by focusing on grassroots charities, it further emphasises its position as being a friend to the little guy.</p> <p>Ultimately, any purchase from Lush comes along with the reassurance that it’s from a brand that truly cares. And there’s no denying that this is an incredibly powerful (and persuasive) notion for consumers.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6090/Lush_Charity_Pot.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="305"></p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/it2ADEr_rEo?wmode=transparent" width="700" height="424"></iframe></p> <h3>Unique copywriting</h3> <p>Alongside its core values, Lush is famous for its unique and quirky <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/online-copywriting/">copywriting</a>. </p> <p>In recent years, the brand has ramped up its efforts in this area even more, with <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/62713-six-things-to-consider-when-writing-product-descriptions/">product descriptions</a> becoming a huge focus of its online shop.</p> <p>Using an unashamedly flowery and funny tone of voice, Lush’s copy combines both puns and rhymes with practical information. </p> <p>From ‘You’ve Been Mangoed’ to ‘Granny Takes a Dip’, the names of the products also range from the predictable to the rather ridiculous. Yet somehow, it still works.  </p> <p>The style is nothing if not consistent, with similarly punny headlines being found throughout the website and blog, as well as a similar style on social media. </p> <p>It is not everyone’s cup of tea of course, but it is certainly distinctive.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6091/Lush_Copy_2.PNG" alt="" width="700" height="417"></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6092/Lush_Copy.PNG" alt="" width="665" height="469"></p> <h3>Influencer marketing</h3> <p>In recent years, YouTube has turned out to be one of Lush’s most effective marketing channels. </p> <p>Despite uploads on the brand’s own account being surprisingly rare, mentions from a number of influential internet personalities has meant that it has still enjoyed valuable exposure.</p> <p>With the likes of Zoella and Tanya Burr declaring their undying love for the brand in endless ‘Lush hauls’, the store has garnered millions of new customers as a result.</p> <p>There’s no denying the power of this word-of-mouth marketing. Despite the world of influential advertising becoming <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67923-influencer-marketing-is-becoming-a-joke-what-can-brands-do-about-it/">increasingly murky</a>, most of Lush's endorsements do appear to be organic (with many videos appearing during the early days of YouTube).</p> <p>With millions of subscribers, personalities like Zoella are able to influence buyer behaviour far more than most other forms of advertising - a fact that has certainly gone in Lush's favour.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/lJDOtzCHXKo?wmode=transparent" width="854" height="480"></iframe></p> <h3>User-generated content</h3> <p>Lush doesn’t only put effort into growing its customer base. A big reason behind its success is its focus on building a relationship with its audience.</p> <p>By talking to customers on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, Lush maintains a continual cycle of conversation and engagement. </p> <p>Using hashtags such as the popular #lushtime, it encourages customers to share their own personal Lush experiences, in turn building the brand's community.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6094/Lush_Instagram.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="634"></p> <p>A further example of how the brand uses content to elevate the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/customer-experience-statistics/">customer experience</a> is the 'Lush Kitchen'.</p> <p>By creating a limited number of online-only products, it aims to offer a personalised and exclusive service.</p> <p>Far more appealing than a standard shopping experience, it automatically encourages shoppers to recommend it to their friends or post about it online.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6095/Lush_Kitchen.PNG" alt="" width="730" height="461"></p> <p>Lush is a brand that promises far more than just a good bubble bath.</p> <p>With its passionate values, distinct style and positive community, it ensures customers are more than happy to spead the word.</p> <p><em><strong>Don't forget to get your <a href="http://www.festivalofmarketing.com/awards/categories?utm_source=econsultancy&amp;utm_medium=blog&amp;utm_campaign=econ%20blog">entries in for the Masters of Marketing</a> awards before the deadline on 17th June. </strong></em></p>