Social Media Analytics – Auditing and Measuring Performance

Part 1 of this series – Social Media Strategy 101 – covered social media basics, platforms, and best practices to grow engagement and success. Now, we’ll dive into the fun stuff: social media analytics.

One of the most validating (and nerve-wracking) parts of marketing is going back to the data, measuring performance, and immediately seeing whether your approach achieved desired goals.

The numbers never lie, but instead, reveal where your efforts succeeded or fell short, giving you the insights necessary to pivot your marketing strategy.

This is particularly true in social media marketing, where you can test new tactics, themes, copy, images, and other variables very quickly and at low investment, and learn from their success to apply to your overall marketing strategy.

Today, we’re sharing the social media metrics to prioritize and steps to perform an accounts audit – something you’ll want to do at least once yearly to ensure your social media channels are hitting performance goals.

Our guide to auditing and measuring social media performance will cover:

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Social Media Strategy 101

Social media is largely a top of the funnel channel, serving the supportive, storytelling aspect of digital marketing. Over 4 billion users are on social media worldwide and the adoption rate in 2020 alone increased 12%. Plus, more than 40% of consumers use social media as a discovery engine.

Social needs a lot of attention, but that attention pays off in customer engagement, brand awareness, audience reach, and social listening (the opportunity to have your ear-to-the-ground and hear what customers say about your brand, products, or competitors).

Today, we’re comparing the most popular social media platforms, sharing best practices, and providing a list of handy tools used by our Whereoware social media team to drive social media engagement and success. Let’s go!

Our A-to-Z Social Media Strategy Guide covers:

Popular Social Media Platforms

Best Practices for Your Social Media Strategy

The Big Ones: Popular Social Media Platforms

LinkedIn

Arguably one of the most important social media platforms for B2B businesses and jobseekers, LinkedIn is an excellent network for professionals to connect.

According to a HubSpot analysis, LinkedIn’s lead conversion rates are 3x higher than other major ad platforms, including Google Ads. Four out of 5 members drive business decisions, and LinkedIn’s audience has 2x the buying power of the average web audience, making this platform a favorite amongst marketers.

LinkedIn is the first-place potential customers and candidates will check out your company, so grab attention by sharing behind-the-scenes peeks into your culture, photos, open positions, upcoming events or awards, project updates, and other news.

These posts should embody your brand and reflect your businesses’ mission, goals, or accomplishments to drive excitement for both jobseekers and customers.

Continue reading Social Media Strategy 101

Boost Website Success with Conversion Rate Optimization

Originally published in Customer Think.

Driving traffic to your website is one thing, but converting visitors is a feat. WordStream reported the average website conversion rate is only 2.35%, with top-performing websites coming in at 5.31%. This tells us that putting the spotlight on conversion rate optimization (CRO) can make a world of difference.

Whereoware VP of Client Success and Marketing, Randi Mohr, caught up with Customer Think to discuss how marketers can harness CRO to improve their website success. Catch the highlights below!

  • Improve your homepage experience by creating a clear navigation, highlighting contact and FAQ information, and making the site visually pleasing. Don’t forget to include clear calls-to-action (CTAs)!
  • Tailor individual landing pages to further guide customers through the funnel. Whatever your desired action, ease-of-use and clear indication is key here. Keep your webforms on the shorter side, requiring information that won’t be a struggle for users to divulge (understand that requiring things like a phone number can reduce conversions by up to 47%).
  • Product pages should deliver every piece of critical information a customer needs to make a purchase, such as descriptions, specifications, warranty information, quality photography, and user reviews to inspire trust and push customers across the finish line. Bear in mind that quality user-generated-content (UGC) can increase conversions 161% – 207%.
  • Tap into optimizing Core Web Vitals to ensure your website is loading fast, keeping in mind that 1/3 of users tend to bounce if the site takes more than a few seconds to load.
  • Mobile experiences are unsurprisingly on the rise compared to desktop browses, with about 50% of all ecommerce sales in 2020 taking place on mobile devices. Be sure to review your website on mobile to make the experience as equally compelling.
  • It’s table stakes to invest in a Secure-Sockets-Layer (SSL) certificate to further enhance the security and consumer trust on your website. Payment security is a big reason customers abandon, so instilling trust by using a popular payment method like PayPal or Apple Pay is a great strategy.
  • Testing and pivoting strategy over time is one of the most effective ways to see what works best for you and your consumers. Set up A/B tests and follow the data to further optimize your site and rake in the conversions.

Boost website success through conversion rate optimization. Remember to put yourself in the consumer’s shoes, how would you ideally be pushed through the funnel and to the finish line when making a purchase? For the full article, visit Customer Think.

Acoustic Campaign for Customer Acquisition: Maximize Your Audience

Acoustic Campaign is a comprehensive digital marketing tool enabling brands to design and automate multi-channel campaigns.

With Acoustic Campaign, marketers can manage their audience database, automate outbound messages, move leads through profitable sales funnels, measure performance, and make the 1:1, personal connections that customers increasingly demand.

Acoustic Campaign has robust capabilities to help businesses of all sizes achieve customer acquisition, retention, and maximization goals. In our first of two Comprehensive Acoustic Guides, we’ll cover:

Acoustic Campaign On-Demand Webinar

Want a head start? Check out our on-demand webinar, Acoustic Campaign Features You May Be Missing.

In this on-demand 30-minute webinar, we share our favorite (but all-too-often overlooked) email, automated programs, personalization, and reporting tips available in Acoustic Campaign and other automation tools.

Watch the webinar for tips and tools to work smarter (not harder) and get the most out of your go-to marketing automation platform.

Maximize Your Audience: Intro to the Acoustic Database

Acoustic Campaign makes acquiring new leads and nurturing customers simple. Import contact lists directly into your database or combine incentives and webforms to automatically capture new prospect information (like incentivizing prospects to sign up for your email list or download a piece of content).

Setting up your first Acoustic Database? Get a deep dive here.

While setting up your database, you must determine how Acoustic matches an individual in the database. Your goal is to capture important information and activity about each individual interacting with your brand into robust customer profiles.

Setting the unique identifier enables Acoustic to match up and add to an individual’s profile, not add duplicates to your database. For Whereoware, we use Email as the unique identifier to match individuals, to ensure we don’t end up with duplicates in our database.

Next, customize your Acoustic database to capture critical insights about your customers. Acoustic captures pre-set system fields, like Opt-In date, automatically for every contact added to the database.

Your team can define additional field types to capture extra customer data for marketing outreach. For example, you may want to capture a lead’s Industry or phone number, and you can easily add these new fields to the Acoustic database. Adding new fields or editing field names in the future is easy.

Once you’ve customized your database, you’re ready to add contacts.

Continue reading Acoustic Campaign for Customer Acquisition: Maximize Your Audience

Feed The Marketing Machines: Future-Proof Your Business

Originally published in CMS Wire. 

It’s no surprise that Automation and AI (Artificial Intelligence) are growing as the front runners of modern marketing and data analysis. Accelerated workflows, reduced manual efforts, data-driven decision-making, and impossible possibilities are the name of the game in 2021. 

IBM reported that 80% of companies are using automation software or plan to in the next year. Likewise, 50% of respondents in a recent McKinsey survey stated that their companies have integrated AI in at least one business function.  

Whereoware CEO, Michael Mathias, chatted with CMS Wire on the adoption of AI and automation in the marketing world. Read on for a few of our favorite highlights. 

MarTech Evolves to Peak Optimization 

When AI and automation are harnessed by talented marketers bent on streamlining strategic decisions and optimizing processes, the only way forward is up.  

Leveraging automation, predictive modeling, easy to follow analytics, AI recommendations and experimentation, MarTech is swiftly evolving into an all-in-one powerhouse, allowing marketers to execute, analyze, and pivot strategy at the turn of a dime with much more efficiency. 

Harnessing the power of AI in this capacity expedites the decision-making process and proves time and time again that the future is now

Continue reading Feed The Marketing Machines: Future-Proof Your Business

Webinar Recap: What do the Apple and Google Privacy and Experience Updates Mean for Marketers?

Thank you to all who joined us for our webinar, Marketing Mayhem – What do the Apple and Google Privacy and Experience Updates Mean for Marketers?

In 15 minutes, we explained:

  • What the Apple Mail Privacy Update is and how it impacts marketers
  • How Google’s phasing out third-party cookies and what to do about it
  • How to optimize your website to align with Google’s recent Page Experience update.

We left marketers with practical tips on how to weather the storm and stay in customers’ good graces.

Watch the recording and get the webinar slides to learn about the impact of these important updates on modern marketing, and how to adapt your strategy to protect campaign performance.

Watch the Recording

Continue reading Webinar Recap: What do the Apple and Google Privacy and Experience Updates Mean for Marketers?

Google Says No More Third-Party Cookies? 4 Strategies to Keep Your Marketing from Crumbling

Photo of a cookie with the Google logo on it.

Originally published in IndustryWeek.

Data and marketing go hand-in-hand; this crucial pairing ensures marketers target the right audience with the right content and make strategic decisions.  

Yet, there’s an increasing spotlight on data collection practices and privacy, with more and more customers voicing their discomfort.  

2019 Pew Research study concluded that 81% of people feel as if they have no control over how their data is collected, and 79% are concerned with how companies are using it.  

 Google, for one, is listening to their concerns.  

At the time of publication, Google announced that they would be ending third-party cookie tracking on all of their ad networks and Google Chrome in early 2020, with no plans to replace tracking technology (the change has since been pushed back to mid-2023). 

While this seems like a noble path, Google will continue tracking using first-party data (data you’ve entered into their own products, like YouTube). 

So, how do marketers adapt to a world, sans cookies? 

  1. Maximize your first-party data. It’s a no-brainer that providing value is the best way to boost customer loyalty, and in turn, continue to gather critical first-person data with consent during a query.  Email sign ups, preference centers, special birthday/anniversary offers, loyalty programs, special demos, or downloadable content can give value to customers, while helping you gather additional datapoints (email addresses, preferential data, etc.). 
  1. Focus on the long-term goal of customer loyalty and understand how important garnering and retaining this loyalty is. Build a plan to nurture and grow a loyal customer base, in turn, stacking valuable data that your customers are happy to give.  
  1. Explore email segmentation and preference centers to drill your customer base down and personalize email sends based on your customers’ interests. Launching personalized marketing touchpoints drive customer loyalty and conversions.  
  1. Tailor your content and ads based on keyword search to win in this new cookie-less world. Contextual advertising is a great tactic to try when strategizing around these new updates, allowing marketers to target users based on the theme of the webpage. 

Dive into more strategy ideas on how to navigate in our third-party cookie-less world by reading the full article, here

Google Page Experience: A Comprehensive Guide

Our Google Page Experience Comprehensive Guide covers:

  1. What is the Google Page Experience update?
  2. What are Core Web Vitals?
  3. Why is quality content important?
  4. What are other important search signals?
  5. Watch our webinar on the Google Page Experience update.
  6. Helpful tools and resources to measure Page Experience.

Need to get up to speed fast? Download our step-by-step Google Page Experience Checklist, or scroll to the bottom to view our Page Experience webinar.

You’ve experienced it before: you’re trying to shop or read an article online and the site is jumping, loading slowly, and covered with interrupting ads.  

As the user, this is incredibly frustrating and will lead you to click away to a better website. In fact, the average cart abandonment rate in 2021 is 68% according to Baymard Institute

Website owners should be equally frustrated. Not only is an abandoned visitor a lost opportunity for engagement and revenue, a poor web experience will make the website more difficult to find in search results. Why?  

In the midst of the pandemic, Google announced a rollout in spring/summer 2021 to put UX first: a poor website user experience (UX) is now a factor in search rankings

That slow, jumpy, and ad-filled website is more likely to be relegated to page three or four of the search engine results pages (SERP), meaning, very few people will find and click on it.

This is a big miss. According to SearchEngine Journal, the first organic Google search result has a 28% click-through-rate (CTR). This percentage declines with the second and third rankings coming in at 15% and 11%, respectively.  

These statistics drive home the importance of ranking at the top of the first page of a Google search and why marketers must protect their rankings during Google’s Page Experience update.  

Let’s simplify the components of Google’s Page Experience update, brush up on existing UX-related search signals, and explain how marketers can improve their site to appease Google, while improving customers’ UX. 

Google’s Page Experience Update 2021: The What, Why, and How:

Google makes thousands of updates each year to improve the search experience; the Page Experience update aims to help Google serve up the highest quality and most user-friendly sites in SERPs.

“Page experience is a set of signals (Core Web Vitals and existing search signals) that measure how users perceive the experience of interacting with a web page, beyond its pure information value.”

– Google
Continue reading Google Page Experience: A Comprehensive Guide

3 Critical Website Updates For UX

Originally published in Retail Customer Experience.

Today’s consumers expect flawless website experience. In a recent survey of more than 8,000 B2C and B2B buyers worldwide, 73% said one really good experience with one company raises their expectation across the board when shopping online.

Marketers are tasked with analyzing all aspects of their website’s performance and continuously enhancing the customer experience to meet these high expectations. This is especially crucial as technology, consumer behavior, and product interest is always evolving.

Randi Mohr, Whereoware’s Vice President of Client Success and Marketing, recently sat down with Retail Customer Experience to share three insightful tips on updating your website to maximize your customer’s UX.

1. Make it easy to find products: Streamline Navigation

56% of customers expect to find whatever they need from a company in three clicks or less, so streamlining your navigation is crucial to capture and retain visitors on your website. The top navigation should be concise, logical, and descriptive and include high level categories to organize items of interest.

We recommend you limit the top navigation to fewer than seven categories to minimize cognitive load and maximize usability. Use a dropdown sub-navigation to break product categories down further, while also utilizing product imagery and messaging to capture attention.

Base category names on keyword research and language common to your audience to ensure the options are intuitive and recognizable at-a-glance. The over-arching goal is to make the experience as seamless as possible to keep frustration low and the consumer moving through the funnel.

2. Motivate Purchases: Enhance Product Detail Pages

It’s no surprise that product detail pages (PDPs) are a crucial aspect of your website, after all, your customer is most likely to make a purchase here. An optimized PDP uses a combination of high quality product photography; compelling descriptions, specifications, and details; and interactive elements to turn browsers into buyers and drive revenue.

Like our clients at Cuisinart, the best PDPs should entice customers to engage with the brand using rich visual media, reviews, and other content to help the customer visualize using the product.

Add personal, AI-driven product recommendations that will continuously analyze user actions to recommend the most compelling products, improving product discovery and the overall customer experience. 

Continue reading 3 Critical Website Updates For UX

4-Step Framework for a Successful Marketing Campaign

We hear it all the time: marketers work tirelessly to run multiple, simultaneous campaigns, but struggle to show clear ROI.  In fact, according to Forrester, 46% of brands report measuring marketing ROI is a challenge.

Don’t run yourself ragged. We’ve teamed up with our partners at HubSpot to share a flexible framework to build and measure customer-centric marketing campaigns that maximize ROI. The following framework removes the guessing game with a proven process that’s sure to help you hit your marketing targets seamlessly.

Turn your best campaign ideas into a winning strategy by taking these 4 essential steps to implement your next marketing campaign.

1. Mission: Reconnaissance – Segment and Target the Right Audience

First, determine your target audience to develop a personalized customer journey and content,

To develop your persona(s), look for actionable data from across your organization to predict the audience’s motivations, questions, and concerns. Take a look at sales and return data, reviews, customer service call logs, and other places customers input data.

Website and marketing analytics can show patterns of frequency, seasonality, demographics, and much more. If all else fails, or your data is less than reliable, go straight to the source with a customer survey.

The goal is to learn as much as possible about your audience to develop distinct and hyper-relevant personas, which will inform how best to market them with your new campaign.

2. On Your (Bench)mark, Get Set…

Set yourself up for success with SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. The SMART criteria help you establish benchmarks for what you’re trying to accomplish, how, and why.

For example: “our goal is to increase revenue by 10% over Q1.” This is a SMART goal because it specifically states a measurable increase that is attainable, relevant, and timely for a marketing team to achieve over the first quarter.

Establishing SMART goals not only provides you with focus and direction to prove ROI, but it also focuses your optimization efforts. Continuously return to your goals and identify small changes to make incremental improvements. These agile optimizations will add up to improve campaign performance, while giving you critical data on what resonates with your audience.

Continue reading 4-Step Framework for a Successful Marketing Campaign