2014 Digital Marketing Predictions

Candeo Creative : Blog

Paper Fortune Tellers We can’t believe it’s already 2014! It seems this past year went by in a flash. 2013 brought us many new changes in the wonderful world of advertising.

The rapid pace that technological advancement is moving at tells us to fasten our seatbelts and prepare for further continual change. Just as soon as people start getting used to a platform or service, an update will come out or perhaps a competitor will emerge and quickly take over. This is why marketers must always have their eyes on what’s upcoming and already understand what’s new.

Let’s take a look at some of this year’s digital marketing highlights!

“Big Data” gets bigger & better

Users share their personal information with brands in exchange for benefits. Currently there aren’t many effective ways that user data is fully compiled and understood; however this will surely advance.

Predictive technologies will become much more sophisticated this…

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Making the change….

Slowly I am making the move into social media consulting. I’m not trying to make the change to rapidly, as this is a key move for my business. I do have the marketing plan just about done, thankfully. Then comes the REAL fun! Making revenue projections….YAY!

But, I have to admit that I am excited about this new direction I am going in. It is an exciting area that I enjoy working in. I have managed to raise my Klout score from a 12 to a 24 in a little over a week. I am getting more and more engagement on my Twitter account. And my LinkedIn network is getting larger.

Hoping to start actually fully promote the new service in February. Going to start some Beta testing next week to get some feedback on what business owners are actually looking for from their social media. Fingers crossed I get some great feedback.

Social media | Why use it?

Social media marketing for small businesses.

Using social media to spread the word.

Social media marketing is one of the most important type of internet promotion in which small business owners are generally promoting their particular products/services and brand names social media sites such as Zynga, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and so on.

Social media marketing has grown to be a crucial portion of internet promotion among small business owners because of its cost-effectiveness, capability to get to qualified people speedily and create more leads/sales. It is important for small business owners because of its inexpensiveness and capability to get to a large number of qualified people within a lesser amount of time and extremely little work. 

Social media marketing is the greatest instrument for small business owners to personalize their business. Socialmediatoday, 83% of buyers would prefer to get information from your business by using Zynga and 53% with Tweets. 

Together with more than half of the globe’s human population signed up having various social media platforms, the chances of finding buyers are generally pretty high when using social media. Just in 2013, 36% of those who involved marketing experts with their marketing plan found buyers by using Tweets, 52% by using Facebook and 43% by using LinkedIn.

Soon after knowing the main advantages of utilizing social media as a marketing tool, quite a few small business owners have got increased time and investment allocated to marketing via social media platforms. Social media marketing is a superb solution to assemble the little business’ manufacturer and increase the consumer bottom. For those who have not really commenced marketing with social media platforms for your corporation, get going and reap the benefits of it – coming from a organization view.

Navigating A Pivot Point

Pivot Points In Small Business

Making the choice to change direction

That critical time in every business has come for me. Do I stay on the path that I have been going or make a change in direction? This decision is always a very important one that should not be made on a whim. My old mantra holds true here: DO YOUR RESEARCH.

With my business, I started out just providing virtual assistant services which then expanded into customer service which expanded into marketing which expanded into social media management. All this expansion was done without really looking at whether or not it would benefit my business cause I was just happy to have work coming through the door. But, I have realized I have lost focus of what my business stands for. Is this where I want my business to go?

Than answer was a loud and resonating “NO”. This was not the direction I wanted my business to go when I started it, nor is it where I want to continue on going. So time for a major pivot point. The question then became “Which way?”. This was a bit more difficult to answer and took some major consideration.

I have decided to keep to the basis of the name RI Business Solutions. I’m changing my target market to a more local geographic region and plan on working with very small businesses (less than 25 employees). I understand their needs and have the experience to help them.

The services will be internet marketing including website development (including mobile sites), social media management, search engine optimization, and content development. This is the direction that the world is moving and it can be an overwhelming experience for the typical small business owner to undertake on their own.

The major difference this time for me, I am doing my due diligence in creating a business plan for this pivot change. I’m doing the research to make sure I understand exactly where I want to go, how to get there, and what I will need for the trip.  I have even contacted the local SCORE chapter for some guidance and input.

So hopefully this new plan will work out.

 

Networking Event – Success or Failure?

Success or Failure?

Last Wednesday I attended a Network After Work event in Providence, RI. It was my first networking event and I didn’t know what to expect. Now I am not sure if it was a success or failure.

It wasn’t really what I expected. The other attendees were not what I would call my “target market“. Small business owners were few and far between. I was hoping to increase the awareness of my business in my local area as I am trying to transfer from using Elance to attracting clients directly.

Here is the “But”, I did meet some key people who could compliment my services. Hopefully by developing this new connections I can build a mutually beneficial relationship with this other service providers as we share a similar target market.

Question is: Would that be a good idea? Hence my dilemma. These key decisions are so important to a business. There are both Pros and Cons to this. Trying to weigh them out will prove to be difficult.

Overall though, I feel my first event was a success. I got a chance to practice my networking skills and find my tactic to start conversations. I did meet some interesting people and heard how others are handling their various jobs and businesses. So the learning experience was worth it.

I have already started looking for other events in my area. But I will be a little more particular of which events I will attend. Networking is definitely an important part of building a successful business, but you have to pay attention to which events you are attending. If the event is not going to meet your overall goals, then the time spent there will not be productive. And unproductive time spent is a loss for your business.

Networking event…. this should be interesting.

Learning How To Network

For a long time I have known that I needed to actually leave the comfort of my computer chair and start interacting with live people. Over and over I have put it off, but the time has come…..the dreaded networking event.

I will be attending the Network After Work event in Providence, RI tomorrow night. I have my business cards ready to go. I’m fairly confident I know how to explain what I do (I hope). Part of prepping for this event was reading some articles on how to effectively network at an event, which was a REALLY good idea, as I came away with many things I never thought about.

The most difficult part of this for me is going to be remembering peoples names. I can remember passwords to a dozen different sites, but tell me your name and it will be gone from memory in minutes. Hopefully everyone will be wearing their name tags, cause I will be needing them.

I’m mostly looking at this as a learning experience. It will be interesting hearing from small business owners and what their concerns for the future are. Getting some much needed insight will help me better prepare for the pivot point I plan on making come the new year (more on that later).

Anyways, I would love to hear some stories (both good and bad) of how others have managed networking events. They say that misery loves company!

 

5 Amazing Stats of mobile usage

phone.jpg

More and more people are using this!

 

I was doing some research on the increasing usage of mobile smartphones and the numbers I found were staggering. Just American smartphone ownership has increased from 93.1 million in 2011 to 116 million in 2012. Imagine what the numbers will be for 2013?

Some other stats I found are:

  1. 4 out of 5 Americans use their smartphone to shop
  2. 70% of mobile searches lead to an action within 1 hour
  3. 75% of Americans admit to bringing their smartphone to the bathroom
  4. 40% of mobile users will choose another result if it is not mobile friendly
  5. 60% of all mobile searches are done on smartphones.

This is a market that cannot be ignored by any business owner. The potential of loss business is exponentially growing every year. It has reached a point of either get on board or get left behind. But this isn’t a market where you just want to go with the first solution you come across. Make sure to do your research of what is available to meet your specific business’s needs. Just cause something worked for someone else does not mean it is right for you.

Need more of a reason to start thinking about your  mobile marketing needs? Just watch this video:

If all this does not convince you to start getting your business ramped up for mobile maketing, I do not know what will.

Feel free to contact me with any questions you may have or just to discuss the future of the mobile market.

* Statistics can be found at:

The 5 Fundamental Pillars of Mobile Marketing For 2014

Retailers Carving Out Space in M-Commerce Market

Mobile Behavior Big Game Seating (a study with Surveymonkey)

 

Where I am at…..

So past couple of weeks have been hectic. Business has really been picking up (to where I even hired someone part-time), so apparently I am doing things right. I am now involved with marketing, call center support, and general assistant work. Most of my work comes through on Elance, which has gotten me thinking that I need to get more aggressive with my own personal marketing.

Which, to me, means really getting active with my social networking and starting to attend some local networking events. I’ve begun laying the plans for my growth going into the new year. Mostly setting goals of where I hope to be by the end of next year. From there I can develop plans to reach those goals (or even surpass them!).

So my question to everyone out there in the blog world….. where do you see yourself at the end of next year and how do YOU plan on reaching those goals? And of course…. do you need help with reaching those goals?

Email Campaign Results

Email

As those that follow me, I had been working on an email campaign for a client for the past few months (See Email1 & Email2). It took so long due to a time difference between Israel and I, but it has finally been sent out. We did a small campaign through InfoUSA of just 300 emails to see what kind of open and click through rates we would get. The results were on the lower end of what is average (6.42% open and 0.38% click through).

Looking over the results versus what I have learned I see a few errors I made, specifically with my subject line. It was too long and could have had a better catch. Going to redesign the email itself also. I need to add more social media content to it.

Overall, I am satisfied with the results. I know I can take what I have learned and apply it to the next round of emails. Looking to send 1000 this next round with the new changes applied. Hoping to reach a 10% open with a 1.5% click through rate this next time around.

It is a very time consuming process though. You really need to do your research about what works and what doesn’t. Pay attention to that subject line, as that is the big key to getting people to actually open the email. Also, most people view their email on their smartphones. So be sure to make sure your email will look good on a small screen (another lesson learned).

I’ll let you all know the results of round 2 in a few weeks.

Learning new skills…..quickly

 

I have a client that needed a video edited for posting on YouTube. Now, I have never edited or created a video in my life. So not only did I have to learn a new skill……but had to learn it quickly. Was not an easy task at all.

I went through several programs trying to find the right one to edit the audio….then several more to edit the video…..then several more to add text to the video. Google was a good friend of mine throughout all this.

Luckily it came out pretty good and the client is happy. But I’m thinking the next time I run into this sort of problem I may just call in an expert….lol.

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