Founders often justify burning the midnight oil, as this is their time to create something meaningful and sleep is something that can come later in life – after these valuable years of innovation are behind them. But this thought process isn’t necessarily beneficial to the company, as lack of sleep can cause people not to think (or function) properly. I should know.
I started OrigAudio, a portable audio products company, with co-founder Mike Szymczak while working a 9-to-5 job as a marketing coordinator for JanSport. As soon as the “workday” was over, I began plugging away on OrigAudio until about 4 in the morning, only to wake up at 7 to get ready for work.
I often caught myself emailing the wrong people, ordering too much inventory and passing out while working on the couch more frequently than sleeping in my bed. This continued for nearly a year before I was able to put the “safe job” behind me to focus on OrigAudio around the clock.
During my journey, I’ve learned several lessons to help battle through the long hours and endless days that are part of the life of an entrepreneur.
6 Reasons Why Influencer Marketing Really Works
Stand out. Get noticed. Six reasons why influencer marketing really works.
In today’s day and age you need to ensure your marketing spend is going to the right places and most importantly, that you’re getting the best bang for your buck.
Influencer marketing is a strategy that offers one of the highest returns on investment. Basically, influencer marketing is the process of identifying strategic individuals within your target market, and partnering with them to create advertising that is genuine and more palatable to the audience.
Google Trends show that the interest in influencer marketing is at an all-time high, and further studies demonstrate that personalised, word-of-mouth marketing is more than twice as effective as the alternatives.
Good customer reviews make the best marketing
The idea is pretty simple — instead of a brand telling you why their new product is so amazing, the good review comes from a popular and trusted individual. When an influencer or thought leader promotes your product or service to their audience, they’re essentially telling their audience “You trust me, and I trust this company.”
This form of advertising is becoming increasingly popular since audiences have already opted to receive this particular person’s opinions. It also puts a human touch to your marketing effort. Partnering with influencers makes your service more trustworthy and allows you to effortlessly reach a wider audience.
Influencer marketing has been identified as the most effective method of customer acquisition in 2016 and 2017, ahead of the likes of display advertising, email marketing, paid social media and traditional media.
92% of consumers turn to people they know for referrals above any other source.
Here are six reasons why influencer marketing works:
1It really does work
There are few things that drive a sale more effectively than word-of-mouth recommendations.
Studies show that trusted word-of-mouth recommendations generate more than twice the sales of paid advertising, and those that were acquired through word-of-mouth had a 37% higher retention rate.
2It’s social media friendly
The world and marketing have shifted to social media. 70% of brands are increasing their social media marketing spend in 2017.
Today, it’s easier to connect with other consumers via social media and make better purchasing decisions by learning about their experiences with a product or service.
Influencers are a force to be reckoned with; brands can strategically partner with the right personalities to spark organic conversations and seduce their followers.
3Cut through the clutter
According to research, the average social media user is exposed to 5 000 advertisements a day. Whether or not that number is scientifically proven, it gets the point across: We are exposed to a lot of ads.
Influencers are able to cut your brand through the clutter and get it straight to your target market’s eyes.
4It’s native advertising
Traditional advertising interrupts the consumer experience (think TV commercials during your favourite series).
Native advertising places brands and products within the organic content, creating a more pleasurable experience for consumers and a more powerful marketing solution for brands.
5Your SEO will strengthen
On top of building your brand and improving your sales numbers, influencer marketing also helps your search engine ranking.
User-generated social posts account for 25% of search results for the world’s top 20 brands. The more people mention your brand on social media, the more popular and relevant you will be on Google.
Probably the most important thing of all is that marketers and brand owners can actually track the success of their influencer marketing campaigns, unlike expensive TV, print and radio campaigns.
The digital world is different. Every website visit, social like, and picture posted online can be stored and analysed, giving you tons of data that turns into valuable insights about your target market and your advertising performance.
Influencer marketing presents a massive opportunity for brands to leverage the power of word-of-mouth at scale through personalities that consumers already follow and admire. The possibilities are endless, you’ll actually save marketing spend and guess what…? You can finally measure your results.
How To Prove Your Marketing ROI
In today’s competitive environment, measuring ROI is a critical part of retaining (and gaining) clients.
How can we work more smartly and prove our value in an industry where the rules and tools are changing every day?
Keeping clients happy and more importantly signed on to your company lies in both driving your client’s revenue goals and proving that you’re the one doing it. While proving ROI in the past has been tricky, with the data and technology available today it’s not only possible, but a business imperative.
No business wants to put money and resources into something that doesn’t pay off.
- Will the results from the channel make the effort, time, and cost worth it?
- How will you prove this?
- Is there content that will perform better and show a higher ROI?
- How is this going to be measured?
Measuring social media ROI
Here’s an example of how we measure ROI for our social media clients. First, we put very specific metrics in place, so we know what data we are collecting and tracking.
1. Increase social media engagement
Social media metrics to measure: Likes, Shares, Comments, Retweets, Mentions, Favourites
2. Increase customer visits to your website and online store
Social media metrics to measure: Website click-through and traffic from social media
3. Increase brand awareness for your product or company
Social media metrics to measure: Follower growth rate, percentage change over time in followers, Twitter sentiment, reach by region, clicks by region
There are numerous tools to also help you track Social Media ROI:
- Google Analytics: Track website traffic, on-site conversions, and sign-ups originating from social media campaigns.
- Hootsuite Analytics: Hootsuite offers a variety of analytics tools to help you track your reach, conversions and more; we swear by this for our campaigns.
You should check your various social media metrics frequently. We do this daily to ensure that our clients’ social media goals are being met. The lifecycle of social media campaigns is often very short, so you need to stay on top of the data as it happens.
8 Free Ways To Promote A New Article
You’ve just posted a brand new original article on your blog and now you want people to read it. In fact, you would love to get LOTS of people to read it. But how?
Before we even explore some ways, it is important to understand that the better and more useful and informative your article is, the better. The more original, fresh, entertaining, and valuable, the easier it is get people to read it.
If your article is merely regurgitating information that can be found on a hundred other websites, or if it is poorly written and contains an English teacher’s nightmare of spelling and grammar mistakes, all the promoting in the world won’t do it much good.
However, if your article is perceived as useful and valuable to readers then it will be a lot easier to promote. Here are eight free ways.
1. Mention your new article on each of your social media accounts
If you’re posting on Facebook for instance, be sure to include:
- A link to it
- A summary of the article
- Reasons people will find it valuable
- An image (this one is vital!)
- A few, relevant hash tags.
If you don’t have any social media accounts for your organisation, you probably should take the time now to create at least one.
2. Add a link to your article from the homepage
There are two reasons why this helps. First, internal links help with your search engine rankings. So a link from your homepage (which usually has the most search engine ‘power’) will give a slight boost to the page it is linking to, which will help it rank better in the search results.
The second reason to add your link to your homepage is your homepage is probably viewed a lot. So more people will see the link to your new article which will help funnel more people to it.
3. Send an email blast to your list
If you have a list of subscriber email addresses (which you should) then be sure to craft a special email message that’s purpose is alerting your subscribers to your new article. In the email, be sure to include the following:
- A greeting explaining why they are getting this message
- A summary of the article
- A link to the article
- Reasons people will find it valuable
- An image (this one is vital!)
If you don’t have a subscriber list, start making one. This is an important asset for any business.
4. Alert Related Websites
Do a search for complimentary websites, sites that are not direct competitors with you but are related businesses or organisations. Create a list of 10-20 and email them one by one about your newly-published article.
In your email message, let them know that you thought they might be interested in your new article because it is very much related to the subject of their website.
5. Leave comments in a related article
Do a search for the topic of your new article (or a highly related subject) and then review each of the website in the results. Look for the ability to leave a comment at the end of each. If that’s possible, leave a useful comment and include a link to your article. Be sure that the comment you leave adds to the conversation and has some value.
6. Use Buzzsumo
Buzzsumo is a great tool, but a bit pricey. Fortunately, they offer a free trial. The concept is genius. It finds people who linked to or promoted similar articles to your own, and often times these people are influencers.
For instance, if you wrote an article about the best fly fishing spots in Kansas, you could add the keywords ‘fly fishing spots’ into Buzzsumo and it will find people who read and promoted other fly fishing spots articles on their social media accounts.
All you then have to do is let each of these people know that you just published an article that is very similar (and hopefully better than) the article they previously liked and promoted. Since they likes the last one, there is a good chance they will like yours too.
7. Create a YouTube video
Create a video that either discusses your article or discusses a related subject. Post the video on YouTube and in the description below, include a link to your article.
8. Mention your article in a forum
If you belong to a forum in your industry then either create a new thread about your new article’s topic and then link to it, or mention it in a reply to an existing, related thread if one exists. Just be sure you’re adding value to the forum with what you post. Otherwise, it could be considered spam.
If you don’t belong to a forum in your industry, you ought to. This might be a good time to find one or two and join. After contributing for a while, you can then consider adding a link to a future article of yours in the forum.
The great thing about the eight ways outlined above is that most can be repeated each time you publish a new article. Two important things to remember: almost no one is going to read your article unless you promote it and the better your article is, the easier it is to promote.
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