Category Archives: Online Marketing (General)

2 online marketing methods that were relevant in 1998 and will still be in 2018

Every January, we all (marketers) enjoy doing it – predict new exciting marketing methods that will emerge into our lives in the upcoming year.

We decided to take a different approach this year and talk about “old” online marketing methods that existed in 1998 will still work in 2018.

We did that for one main reason: there are so many platforms for one business to market through today that in reality, most businesses can’t keep up.

So here are two, not new at all, super effective marketing methods that you should invest more time on in 2018.

digital marketing email marketing remarketing

Also, find out why we cheated a bit in this ↑ headline further in the article.

Email Marketing

Not only email was created before the Internet itself and long before 1998 but also the first email marketing was sent in 1978, much before any of us had access to Internet, email, not to mention a personal computer or smartphone. And yet, yes, although open rates and click rates averages decreased dramatically, Email marketing is still (very!) relevant.

Why email marketing still works + the hooks

From a user’s perspective receiving your email, you need to think of hooks. The first hook is the subject line – by far the most important marketing line to think about here. That’s because once a person opened your email – you have their undivided, exclusive attention. Let us say this again – on their screen, the only thing they see now is YOUR content.

Think how rare it is in an age of crowded feeds, busy websites and long search results pages.

email marketing undivided attention of users

Email marketing enables rare undivided exclusive attention of users

Once a user opens your email, you have a small time window to keep their attention via the first lines of your email. That’s the next hook. If you offer a solution to a pain point they are dealing with or share something you know they will care about (You know your audience best!) or offer them an attractive deal you still haven’t lost them and given your Call to Action (CTA), they will follow.

Whether it’s “call us now for more info”, “reply to this email to hear more about this exciting offer” or “Find out the answer here”, the CTA is a not-to-be-skipped element in your email.

Keep in mind that Email is, in most cases, a mean to bring clients and potential ones to the end desired result.

Finally, we recommend to create email marketing campaigns only for email lists you built and belong to you.

Remarketing/Retargeting

Alright, it’s time to admit that we cheated a bit naming this article.

Before we elaborate about that, we’ll just remind you that remarketing or retargeting simply means showing ads to people who have already visited your online assets, website for example (but not only. Also apps, Facebook page via custom audiences and others).

The screenshot shows banners that belong to a Google remarketing campaign

Now, while Email goes back 5 decades back, retargeting goes back only 2 decades. In fact, DoubleClick made the first known use of retargeting exactly 20 years ago (so we didn’t completely lie!) but as you can imagine, it didn’t penetrate businesses’ marketing plans immediately.

That’s why it’s hard to say that remarketing was broadly and effectively used for the past two decades. Even Google opened its platform for remarketing on Google AdWords only in 2010.

Since remarketing became familiar to marketers and as there’s vast information an average user is exposed, remarketing is proven to be one of the most effective ways to improve performance in your online campaigns.

Few will get annoyed but remarketing will still work

We wrote a comprehensive article about remarketing before, including why it’s such an effective method so here are just a few short highlights about it:

  • Remarketing is a concept that travels among platforms. Meaning – you can create remarketing campaigns on (almost) any platform and campaign type. Whether it’s Google (display AND search), Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn or others, use it to its full potential.

Remarketing captures only the people who visited your assets

  • Don’t listen to one person’s opinion. Few people will get annoyed with the recurring ads. That’s a fact. Having said that, you can’t build your marketing strategy based on few people who told you they’re “over seeing” your ads. Remarketing genuinely builds credibility among your audiences, brings them back to your assets and eventually increases conversions.
  • Use remarketing wisely. Don’t run your ads on all audiences, all the time if it’s not needed. For example, you can choose to show your ads to people who visited your website only in the last 7 days or you can set a cap to the frequency of the ads’ appearances. We recommend to change the visuals every once in a while and in general, adjust the messaging based on the fact that these audiences already showed interest in your business.
  • Start today. Finally, one of the best things you can do with remarketing is to start now. In fact, you can start 540 days or 180 days backwards if you ask Google and Facebook (respectively). What does that mean? That even if you plan on doing a campaign at the end of 2018, you can start building your audience today! All you need to do is generate and implement the tags, create a relevant audience (for example, people who visited your website in the last 6 months) and when you’re ready in 2,3 or 10 months, create your campaign and show ads to these audiences.

Bring it on 2018

If you don’t have a solid email marketing strategy or remarketing campaigns on one, two or all the online platforms you work on, 2018 is definitely the time to start 🙂

 

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12 do’s to rock your social media engagement

Most brands today manage at least 2-3 social media channels for their online visibility. Whether it’s Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, LinkedIn or Twitter, when a customer or potential customers are engaging with your brand, there are a few must-do’s (and don’ts) to leverage this engagement. Here they are:

Social media engagement

1. Be fast. You know how when you send a friend a message on WhatsApp or Messenger, if they don’t reply within the hour you get annoyed (especially if there are 2 blue ticks!!)? Things are moving fast on the platforms and as such, when people are engaging with your business on social media, they expect an immediate reaction. How fast should you be? Well, we recommend to not leave an unanswered engagement for more than (very) few hours during the day until late evening.

2. Respond to all engagements. Most ads out there get some engagement. Some ads crack it and gain much traction – hundreds sometimes thousands of comments, replies or messages. In both cases, taking the time to reply to each one will pay off every time. Once, it shows you care about your audience and second, engagement brings engagement which brings more engagement. Social media algorithms work in a way that they prefer content that people care about. And how do these algorithms “know” if people care or not? You got it right – if they interact with it!

social media comments management

Some commenters aren’t as pleasant as you would like

3. Attend all types of engagement. For some it’s easy to leave a comment asking for more details, others will choose a private message and some will even tag your business in a post on their personal timeline. Whatever the case is, make sure to not miss any of the ways that people choose to engage with you and engage back.

4. Manage a situation before it becomes a crisis. At times people will complain about your service, will say your price is too high, that your staff is not efficient. It’s part of the game. Being “out there” also means you’re exposed to criticism. Our advice? Respect people’s opinion. For some people maybe your product is expensive. Remember – whereas you’re replying to “one” person only, there are hundreds, sometimes thousands of eyeballs that are looking at how you react. Even if you can’t please that one person, you should think about the rest of them. The way you manage this criticism will determine people’s opinion about you and you can definitely leverage from it. If someone received a bad service from you, first of all show empathy and then – solve it on the spot. Don’t ignore it. Try to get the person’s details, talk to them on the phone, and understand what you can do for them. Don’t join the party too late when it already went viral. A lot of complaints can be dealt with right there and help you to not only avoid a PR disaster but also provide better service to the person who was not happy just a moment ago.

5. Face the keyboard heroes. It’s unpleasant to talk about it but there’s another type of comments online. These commenters aren’t genuinely disappointed with your service or really feel the price is overrated. This type of comments will simply include swearwords, bad language about you and your brand. It can be your competitors or someone who just wants to hurt your business. Our best advice is to face them very firmly, asking for a concrete criticism. If they can’t provide that, it’s your right to ask the commenter to remove it (technically you can remove it/hide it yourself but we don’t recommend doing that). Our experience shows time after time that this attitude works. Most keyboard bullies don’t expect you to stand up for them but when you do, you can change the situation. Remember, in real life this situation is almost impossible – no one will enter your shop or office and put a sign with their unpleasant thoughts 🙂 If facing them doesn’t help and you feel they just came to your page to abuse, you can let it be and not feed the unnecessary conversation.

If the commenter is not trying to have a real conversation nor to provide real feedback, let it be

6. Words matter. When replying to people, think of the words you use and whether they represent your brand. For example, the natural way to reply to people is as if the account belongs to the writer. So that sentences like “I would be happy to…” instead of “We would be happy to…” sneak in. In case you manage many representatives and they sign their name, this could work. Another example is the way you greet people. Once again, if it was a real shop, you’d say hi or good afternoon, there’s no reason not to do so online. The lack of intonation makes communication online “cold” so wishing someone a great afternoon or adding a smiley can add much light to your reaction and to their day.

In real life you greet and welcome people, you should do the same online

In real life you greet and welcome people, you should do the same online

7. Marketing opportunities. Parallel to providing actual requested information, you can always add a call to action that will put forward your products/service. Examples: “Explore more on our website in the link below” or “Pop up by our shop to discover the entire collection” and so on.

8. Be human. When you have a “real” conversation with people, you usually use their names (first or last). Social media is a platform that is built on people, why not migrate this habit to the platform as well? Don’t hesitate to refer to people in their names. First, it makes your reply personal and second it shows you took the time to reply to the person himself/herself and by that increases the chance the person will engage back. And engagement is as mentioned above – THE goal.

9. Do adjustments. Facebook is different from LinkedIn which is different from Twitter. The tone of voice in these platforms really is not the same so whereas LinkedIn will be more of a corporate environment, Instagram is in much fun and unofficial scenery (noticed how there’s no “like” on Instagram, only “love”?).

10. Check back. Most brands manage their pages manually. That means that as there’s no external software (like Hootsuite or Mention) to monitor the activity, things can be missed. Make sure to check back on your engagements frequently to make sure all engagements were attended. In this context it is important to mention the much spoken about ChatBots that can save you a lot of time.

11. Lead generation + keep their privacy (and your business’s interests). In the previous blog post we discussed much about lead generation, so you already know by now the importance of generating leads from your social media channels. When someone comments, sends a message or replies to you, make sure you don’t miss out on getting their details to take them further in the sales funnel. Sometimes it happens that people leave their phone number/email address right there in the thread. We suggest that after you thank the person for sending their info, you hide it to keep their privacy. Also to not leave it for the competition to use the person’s details.

12. Know whom you’re talking to. Many times, a regular client, a returning client or in a less pleasant situation an unhappy client, is writing to you. It’s important to understand the context of the person who is engaging with you to serve them best. Your page managers should communicate with your sales team constantly.

The way you manage your communities online has great impact on your brand’s image. It’s far more than a customer service channel, it’s the place where everyone is at – 24/7 and where you can and should interact with people who are your clients or potential ones non-stop!

 

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The “Open Sesame” of Online Marketing

You know how the saying goes for retail/food serving businesses? There are only 3 crucial elements for its success – location, location, location.

It’s the same for most types of marketing campaigns, only with leads.

We can hear advertisers’ objection through the screen so let’s just clarify –awareness and consideration as objectives are as important on the path to reach conversions. But they’re just that – “stops” on the way. Most brands in the world count their dollars, not their impressions. Leads are the gateway for a purchase and recurring purchases and therefore a safe bet is to count on the former rather than the latter.

Online marketing how to generate leads for your business

What is a lead?

A lead is a “piece” of information that you have about a potential client that you can use and re-use to get in touch with this person. Granted that it’s all in consent – the person herself/himself provides these details directly to you. It can be a phone number, an email address, a physical address, a Skype address, a WhatsApp number and others.

A word about qualified leads

As the lead generation world has evolved to big volumes, the spam came along with it. So just to have many leads, email addresses or phone numbers of people, is not enough. Qualified leads are leads that are within your target audience and that were gained in honest ways. This is the only type of leads we are going to talk about in this article and the only type of leads we work with.

How to generate leads for your business

There are so many ways to collect leads, some are obvious and some are not. Some are offline and some are online. Some are extremely efficient and some are more time consuming.

We gathered several of these methods so you can start collecting leads for your business now and convert them tomorrow! (Alright, maybe not tomorrow, but soon!)

Online

Suggesting you to open a Facebook page or run a Google search campaign to generate leads is really not going to help you. Using social media, LinkedIn, display and email marketing to drive traffic to your website is really something you must have already known. In the below examples we tried to be as specific as possible and they should go along with the above.

  • Contact us forms. If you have any form of an online asset, a contact us form is not something to give up on. These forms don’t have to be only on the “contact us” page, they can be placed in a fixated area on the website (header for example) or as small chat box on the side. Further more, you can place them on product pages (“Interested in this item? Leave your number here and we’ll get in touch for more details!”). And there’s one more thing – make sure to check these forms work every once in a while.

Contact us form on websites is a must. Screenshot is taken from markjaworskistudios.com

  • Facebook lead ad. Facebook launched a while ago this type of ad and it’s simply magical. The idea is that once a user clicks the CTA button on the ad, “submit” for example, a window opens with auto-filled fields on the form. That simplifies the user experience tremendously and therefore increases the chance for a conversion. You can customize lead ads as you wish – adding almost any field you can think of including an open question. Do keep in mind that the more details you request, the less users will be interested to submit.

  • LinkedIn’s lead gen form. Similarly to Facebook’s lead ad, LinkedIn launched a “lead gen form”. LinkedIn’s main advantage over Facebook is the professional aspect. Whereas many Facebook users don’t submit jobs and companies they work for, on LinkedIn this data is quite precise. On LinkedIn as well, the fields are auto filled and you can easily customize them.

  • Dedicated landing page. Your website is great, we’re sure about that J However it probably includes a lot of information about your business, services, products, history, team and so on. At times, for specific marketing campaigns, the best way is to create a simple, to the point, short landing page that provides enough information for the user to get interested but not enough so they’re eager to leave their contact details. A contact form on this kind of page is, needless to say, an absolute must.
  • Popups. Before a user leaves your website, when they browse a certain category, or delay on a specific product, popup can significantly increase the chance they leave their contact details. Most popups are driving to subscribe to a newsletter and that’s wise because email marketing is still one of the most effective marketing methods out there. Offering exclusive content for email subscribers in your popup, for example, can generate wonderful results.
Screenshot taken from mailing of "Think with Google" by Google Inc.

Screenshot taken from mailing of “Think with Google” by Google Inc.

Users are keener to leave their details when they get something in return. Screenshot taken from bxxlght.com

  • Incentives. People are keener to give their details if they get something in return. So all you have to do is create the “hook”. It doesn’t have to be a contest over a night in a hotel or a restaurant voucher. Here are a few ideas for free incentives you can give away that won’t cost you much and most importantly, provide value to your audiences:
    • E-book: a guide that you built with professional tips.
    • Webinar: share your knowledge by hosting a webinar.
    • Check list: create a “must have” list that can be helpful for your audience.
    • Suppliers you recommend: share and recommend other businesses in the context of your brand and ones that you know your clients will need assistance from.
    • A free trial: if you sell a product or a service that can be given/sent/used in a trial period – this is a great opportunity to generate leads.
    • Exclusive content: as mentioned previously.
Incentive to subscribe. Screenshot taken from H&M's website.

Incentive to subscribe. Screenshot taken from H&M’s website.

  • Content. In general, we like to call “content marketing” anything that provides value to users. The value you provide will create credibility and therefore trust. This trust will result in leads and eventually, in sales. But what does “content with value” mean? Here are a few examples to content you can share:
    • Case studies or success stories that your potential audience can learn from.
    • Offer remedy to pain – why do clients need your service? What are their pain points? How can you suggest, via a blog article, a simple video or a visual as an answer to something they need help with?
    • How to guides – via your blog, YouTube videos and others.

2 in 1: Popup inviting users to a webinar. Screenshot from JonLoomer.com

Offline

Although offline is not our main subject, in our humble opinion, many brands miss opportunities offline, in their physical sites where they can leverage from this marketing opportunity.

  • Phone calls/Emails: an opportunity to mention you have a mailing list and that via it you announce specials, so you’re sure they’d like to join (note the incentive here, as in online).
  • People who visit your premises: same as above, simply offer a good enough reason to leave their details. Gifting them with a small item that is related to your brand can make one very happy potential client and an immediate lead.
  • Paying clients: clients who purchase are keen to provide their details. You just need to make sure you collect them. We suggest a phone number for SMS/WhatsApp marketing and email for your mailing list as the 2 not-to-give-up-on.

Collect your visitors and clients’ leads on site.

  • Events: you can generate leads in any form of offline event:
    • Launching cocktail of your new collection
    • Networking events
    • Other events you choose to sponsor
  • Co-branding: collaborating with other brands is a great opportunity to not only reach new audiences and generate leads from them, but also add value to your brand.
  • Business cards: Although we’re in 2017, well, almost 2018, people still haven’t adjusted to anything that resembles digital business cards, so it’s still here, on the offline list. Either way – don’t practice a “savings” approach with your business cards – give them away, and give them a lot. The leads will follow.

Leads are essential, but they carry you only part of the way

Keep in mind that timing is very important. We live in a “fast” world so when people leave their details, they expect you to act on it quickly.

Lead generation is a substantial goal for almost any business on the planet. However, if leads are not being attended to and the sales job that needs to be done after is not executed, these potential paying clients will become irrelevant. Make sure you don’t miss on that opportunity.

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How many users are on…?

The last quarter of the year is high time for marketers and business owners.

We thought it is a good time to bring together stats about some of the biggest communities out there and show the potential of reach for businesses in terms of monthly and daily users, around the world and in Mauritius (where it’s relevant). Get ready to be amazed.

how many users are on facebook, whatsapp, youtube and others

Facebook  

In its latest quarterly report ends September 2017, Facebook announced nearly 2.1 billion monthly active users.

Out of these 2 billion, 66% percent, meaning 1.32 billion are using the platform daily.

facebook users july 2017

In Mauritius as of October 2017, across all Facebook platforms, including Instagram, Audience network and others you can reach 720,000 registered users.  On Facebook feeds only the number is slightly lower – 690,000 profiles.

Keep in mind that there is, although low, percentage of fake profiles.

facebook users in mauritius october 2017

YouTube

In June 2017 YouTube announced 1.5 billion users logging in every month.

YouTube Facebook monthly active users 2017

In Mauritius as of October 2017, you can reach estimated 595,000 users. 

youtube reach in mauritius october 2017

WhatsApp

Also owned by Facebook inc., WhatsApp announced in July 2017 1.3 Billion monthly active users and 1 billion daily active users (77%!).

WhatsApp also announced lately that it opens its platform for business communication and that could be very meaningful for businesses.

whatsapp users july 2017

Source: WhatsApp

Facebook Messenger

We’ve already written here about the power of instant messaging and mentioned how Facebook separated Messenger from Facebook into two different apps. That paid off.

Head of messenger at Facebook announced in September 2017 there are 1.3 billion monthly active users on Messenger.

In Mauritius as of October 2017 you can reach 440,000 users on Messenger.

facebook messenger users in mauritius

Instagram

In the same 2nd quarterly report of Facebook (as it owns Instagram) Instagram didn’t report monthly active users rather it reported 250 million daily users on stories, the feature it “borrowed” from Snapchat. Later on however, in September 2017 Instagram announced 800 million users, 500 million (62%) of them are using the platform daily.

In Mauritius as of October 2017 there are 190,000 Instagram profiles.

Instagram users in mauritius october 2017

LinkedIn

In April 2017 LinkedIn announced 500 million professionals on the network. It didn’t announce however how many of them are logged in every day. That’s no coincidence. The last time LinkedIn announced DAUs (daily active users) and MAUs (monthly active users) the picture wasn’t bright. Only 22% of the total registered users were active. Now, by all means we don’t underestimate that number (back then it was 106 million) however when you compare it to other networks, it seems as if LinkedIn fails to create the hooks that bring back users day after day to the other platforms.

linkedin users april 2017

Source: LinkedIn’s official blog

In Mauritius as of October 2017 more than 210,000 professionals are registered to LinkedIn.

Linkedin users in mauritius (1)

Twitter

328 million monthly active users – that’s the last update from Twitter in its results for second quarter of 2017. This number stayed flat compared to the previous quarter.

Twitter, similarly to LinkedIn, doesn’t share amount of daily users.

twitter monthly active users

Source: Twitter

It’s been a while that we’ve been trying to get a hold of statistics of users on Twitter in Mauritius however it seems unreachable data. According to some research and estimations we did, we assume there are a few dozens of thousands of registered Twitter accounts in Mauritius however it’s unclear how many are active.

When you try to target Mauritius on Twitter ads, the system can’t find the location (funny enough, it does find Reunion island but without any available number of users). The only “indian ocean” related location is “British Indian Ocean Territory” which retrieves unavailable number of users (not a surprise considering it’s water territory).

users on twitter in mauritius

Musical.ly

Still scratching your head because you’re not sure what musical.ly is? That means you clearly don’t read our blog enough 🙂 As of May 2017 Musical.ly has 200 million app downloads. As it’s not a public company (yet), it doesn’t release much information about usage of users on the platform.

Musical.ly still doesn’t have a solid monetization model and therefore it’s hard to find data about users per region.

Pinterest

If your target audience is American women among others and haven’t used Pinterest yet, we hope this will be your wake up call. With outstanding conversion rates on the platform, Pinterest announced 200 million users on the platform in September 2017.

On Pinterest there are very few countries (as of October 2017) you can target – Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, UK and US. So needless to say – we couldn’t find any reliable information about users stats in Mauritius but we assume that it’s one magnitude lower than Twitter estimation.

pinterest users in mauritius

Pinterest and Musical.ly each has 200 million MAUs. Two other online services with impressive amount of users are Viber and Skype

Pinterest and Musical.ly each has 200 million MAUs. Two other online services with impressive amount of users are Viber (800M) and Skype (300M)

Snap (AKA Snapchat)

In its 2nd quarterly report announcement, August 2017, Snap announced 173 million active users daily. According to past ratio, that makes 184 million monthly active users.

Snapchat doesn’t even let us access its ads page so we couldn’t get data about Mauritius.

snapchat daily active users 2017

Source: Snap Inc.

Other online platforms that might interest you are:

  • Reddit, the social news platform where you can share, vote and discuss, brings estimated 250 million users around the world together every month.
  • Quora, the question-and-answer massive website (that you should really pay attention to!) brings 200 million monthly users.
  • Medium, the online publishing platform brings 60 million unique readers every month.
  • Tumblr, the micro-blogging and social network owned by Yahoo! announced 550 million registered users however it’s not clear how many are active daily as Tumblr doesn’t release information about this (very important) subject.
  • Google+ – Google’s attempt to build a social network that will compete with Facebook has a surprising number of 500 million registered users. Not so surprising when you realize that Google automatically creates profiles for users who signed up to other services it offers (Gmail, YouTube, etc). Either way, this method doesn’t seem to pay off as significantly less users actually use the platform (estimations are in the several millions that are active regularly).

China

Chinese websites are completely in the run for the above vast numbers. And similarly to outside of China, the 3 largest communities online – are owned by the same company (Facebook Inc. and Tencent Holdings Ltd respectively).

WeChat – not only instant messaging but far beyond, WeChat’s community consists of 938 million monthly active users.

QQ – owned by the same company as WeChat however 13 years younger (started in 2011 whereas WeChat started in 1998), QQ is a similar in concept instant messaging app that serves 861 million monthly active users.

QZone – largest social network in China with 632 million MAUs.

Leading online communities in China

Leading online communities in China

The numbers above are all taken from Tencent Holding’s website and are as of first quarter of 2017.

SinaWeiba – a micro-blogging social network (Twitter alike) with 361 monthly active users as of second quarter of 2017.

Baidu Tieba – although 1.5 billion registered users, there are estimated 300 million monthly active users using the Chinese social network platform owned by the giant Chinese search engine Baidu.

And some (last!) others that might interest you to know about:

Two other communities that are worth mentioning are both instant messaging apps (no coincidence here, read all about it in this article):

LINE with 217 million MAUs and Telegram with 100 million MAUs.

In Russia and its surroundings, the two websites you should know are VK, the most popular social network with over 400 million registered accounts and Yandex which is not only the largest search engine in the area but also, similarly to Google, offers many other related Internet services that create vast communities around it.

At the tip of your fingers

Your head might spin with the numbers and their size however we suggest to take the contrary approach, if anything, this proves that any brand today can reach dozens and hundreds of millions of people around the world in so many different ways. And that, without a doubt, creates unprecedented opportunities for businesses today.

 

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[How to] Design Online Ads That People Care About

Let’s start with the facts – I’m not a designer or anything that is remotely close to having a good taste. Really. Even if the most brilliant design in the world will hit me in the face I will probably not notice it.

I’m 100% marketer – online marketer to be precise and not, well… a designer with a natural instinct for visuals (unfortunately!). And as I know a thing or two about online marketing – an environment where brands need to create massive amount of artworks and visuals for many different marketing channels – I’ve gained much knowledge about designing successfully for online.

In this article I’m going to share with you some of these insights and hopefully help out with understanding better the user behind the screen.

Quantum_How-to(Blog) (1)

“The user”

Because everything we do – on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google, Email… reaches users and we can know how many of them saw our ads, clicked on it, converted, we tend to forget that these users are not just numbers displayed on a monthly report. They’re REAL PEOPLE.

I realize that the last sentence sounds obvious but the truth is that it isn’t.

If it was, the same artwork that was designed for print, wouldn’t simply be re-sized once for Facebook and then resized 10 more times as banners for the Google Display Network.

If it was obvious, you wouldn’t see as many elements and as much text as it appears on a full-page ad transformed into an Instagram post.

If it was obvious, you wouldn’t see food menus (complete menus!), brochures and flyers that were designed for print on your Facebook feed.

Real people get annoyed with having to zoom in on your image to understand what it’s all about. They get annoyed if they can’t read what’s written on the artwork. Real people use their mobile more than any other device – and what is good for desktop or tablet isn’t good for their beloved small screen.

And when users, i.e. people get annoyed, they simply aren’t interested with your content anymore. They move on to the next best thing – and as there are so many other options out there – it’s not so hard to move on.

Quantum_How to design for digital marketing

The “users” are real people, who use the small screen more than anything.

When you design for online, you design for people, who use different devices, in different times of the day, on different platforms.

The platforms

Another common behavior is to take the same design and use it across platforms.

People come to different platforms for different reasons. The reason people login to Instagram is to see beautiful images. The reason people login to Facebook is to be kept updated. So, whereas on Facebook a tagline on an image would work excellent, on Instagram it might not be necessary. LinkedIn is the largest professional network on the Internet. People login to it to connect with other professionals, find a job and generate leads for their business. A “fun-cute-social-joke” design for Facebook isn’t relevant for LinkedIn. Don’t get me wrong – you might get some likes, but is it coherent with the platform you’re communicating on?

Would you go to the beach with your gown dress or your tie suit and vice versa – would you go to a business meeting with your swimsuit?

If you do choose to use the same artwork (which sometimes can work!) – make sure to re-size it in the right dimensions – what’s visible properly on Facebook won’t fit LinkedIn and definitely won’t be well seen on your newsletter.

Don't mix between different platforms and the reason people login to them.

Don’t mix between different platforms and the reason people login to them.

It matters. When you design for a specific platform, you must think in the context of it – why do people login to it? Why do people open a promotional email? What brought them to read your blog article?

And when the context is clear – then you can start creating your artworks.

Artworks

The word artwork includes a very powerful word in it – art. And designers are indeed, artists.

But whereas they can design a brochure for a month, and it will serve their client for 1-2 years, in online the picture is completely different. An average post lives on social media for a few days in the best case scenario and 24-48 hours in the most common scenario. An email campaign will be opened maybe once and then probably never again.

That should make a difference – not, by any means – in the quality of the work you do but definitely in the efforts you put into it. If we go a few paragraphs back – probably the reason why so many brands simply resize their print ad (without “breaking” the layout) is that they worked so hard on this one layout that to completely break it and start from scratch for the 5-6 other channels it needs to go on, can be a very frustrating experience.

Different screens, ad types and online platforms demand different artworks.

Different screens, ad types and online platforms demand different artworks.

Keep in mind that your artworks are (very) temporary in the online context when coming to design for online and work around that. One of the ways to not only be coherent online, which is a “must-do” in itself, but also to be more efficient in the efforts you put in is to create themes for your digital channels. These themes should have design templates to come along with them.

Templates

Going back to the person behind the screen to understand what kind of templates you should build – here is one fact to consider:

(1) Most people consume the information from the feed and not from your brand’s page.

That means that the place they see your ad is very noisy and busy.

On top of that, you probably already know that our attention span is decreasing with the years and nowadays it’s measured to a few seconds only.

Don’t believe me? Think how do you react when you see a video on the feed and you realize it’s 11 minutes – “11 minutes!!!” you say to yourself – “that’s forever and I don’t have forever for this – I need to keep scrolling the feed to feed my addiction and stay updated with as many people and pages as possible!”

Ok. Maybe you don’t say that last part exactly like I phrased it but you probably have an idea what I’m talking about.

As our attention span is so short – you have hundredths of seconds to grab the person’s attention. If you didn’t do that, well, she/he scrolled down…

Here is a second fact to consider:

(2) Most people who scroll, don’t read text, they look at the visual first. Sounds obvious but most people I meet in work context assume the logic thing – people read from top to bottom therefore you first read the text and then you look at the visual on the feed.

Understanding it’s exactly the opposite can be a game changer for your designs.

Use tricks in your artworks to draw attention on disrupted feeds.

Use tricks in your artworks to draw attention on disrupted feeds.

Here are a few quick tips:

  • Place a super strong message/tease the reader – on the artwork itself.
  • Place a (short!) tagline on your visual.
  • Create visuals with movement.
  • Use “tricks” to draw attention – for example – if the artwork includes a person on the image (which is recommended, if it’s relevant for your brand guidelines) – place your tagline or an important object you don’t want the users to miss in the place the person on the image is looking at.
  • Design artworks that will be coherent with the context.

The context

Further to the fact there are many online platforms your brand operates on, each platform has its own rules for the different type of ads it enables.

Post ad, the simplest form of an ad is an easy one to manage.

But there are some other forms of ads.

  • Link ad: an ad that transfers the user to an external link once he/she clicks on it (v/s once clicking on the image it simply opens the image in bigger dimension). This type of ad is usually smaller on the height and therefore enables even less space for elements and text. It also includes text in the link and can make the tagline redundant at times.
  • Carousel ad: a type of ad that sends to multiple links. Each part of the carousel can and should be designed differently – whether you design multiple square artworks or crop one long horizontal image to create a nice continuous visual effect.
  • Lead generation ad: this type is quite different from a “simple” brand awareness ad. The objective is conversions and as such, the design should be adjusted to send out a strong call to action.
  • And some others – like photo albums, GIFs, 360° images and let’s not forget one of the most important ad types – videos. As it’s not really the subject of this article, I’ll have to skip it this time.

Whereas in offline once you send your artwork it goes to print and there’s no turning back, in the online environment you can experiment to understand what works best with your audience. 

Experiments

Finally, my best advice for any brand out there is to experiment. A/B testing is among the most important tools that online enables. Here are a few ideas:

  • Create different artworks with the same marketing message in 2-3 design directions and check what’s working best. Some of the platforms (Facebook for example) have a built-in tool for A/B testing.
  • If one theme worked well so far but lately started to drive far less engagement, make a small change and see the impact.
  • Create 2-3 layouts for the same email campaign and check which one made users click more.

The reality is that you have access to your results at any given time and that gives you much control – over your budget, human resources and time.

And in a disrupted world like we live in – is there anything more valuable than these?

 

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Fast, popular and bigger than social media

Think for a second about the apps on your phone. Take another second to think about the apps you use on your phone. We bet that one of the (very few) apps you’re using is an Instant Messaging one (IM or simply messaging app).

Most probably, it’s one of the apps you use the most, more than your social media apps (How many times a day do you open WhatsApp vs. how many times for Facebook?).

Quantum_Blog_Fast_Popular1

WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, WeChat and QQ (China), LINE (Japan), KakakoTalk (South Korea), Kik and Telegram are all popular IM dedicated apps. But the phenomenon of instant messaging is alive and kicking on other platforms as well – Snapchat’s chat, Twitter’s DM (Direct Messaging) and Instagram’s Direct. Viber, Slack, Google Hangout and Skype are used to send and receive direct messages by hundreds of millions around the world every day.

Latest quarterly report from Facebook - 1.2 billion MAUs on Messenger and 1.2 Billion on WhatsApp

Latest quarterly report from Facebook – 1.2 billion MAUs on Messenger and 1.2 Billion on WhatsApp. Photo credit: Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook account

Bigger than social media

In 2015 IM apps caught up on the amount of monthly active users (MAUs) with social networks. The gap is growing since then and although our intuition might imply something else, there are more users on IM apps than on social. The numbers, according to Business Insider (see below image) show 3 billion MAUs on the 4 most popular messaging apps vs. 2.5 billion MAUs on the 4 most popular social networks.

Business Insider

One to One communication

The answer to the question in the title could’ve been email*, and no doubt that email is still huge (and will be for a while…). However, it seems that IM is going to take over in the next few years. It’s enough to observe young people and their relationship with emails vs. direct messaging to understand.

*In general, what is called “dark social”, the category which to both direct messaging and direct emails belong is an interesting part of digital which we’d love to get into, but unfortunately, not in this article 🙂

One of the major differences between IM and communicating via a feed to a large audience is that IM is a completely direct communication, where you have the user’s full attention. Further more, as it’s private and personal, you can adjust your marketing messages according to the user viewing your message. 

Screen Shot 2017-05-30 at 6.57.50 PM

Exponential growth in message traffic Source: statista.com

Bigger than text

The messaging apps’ foundations started with SMS – plain text messages but they evolved into so much more than that: audio, files, links, images, GIFs, contacts and videos all form part of what people send to each other every day via these apps.

If you spend some time with kids, you probably recognize the different pattern of the way they use messaging apps. WhatsApp for them is an actual social network. They’re members of many big groups and transferring huge amount of information among each other, whereas the rest of us manage their communication mainly via private conversations (one person) or small family/friends groups.

If you want a hint into the future of messaging apps, you don’t need a time machine, simply check out what WeChat can do – ordering food, recommending a service and paying online are a quick view into the app’s massive capabilities.

What it means for businesses

The trendiest word in the past 12 months or so, since Facebook opened its messenger app to chatbots is, well… bots. We talked a bit about bots and their 2017 context here but if to bring it into the messaging context: it’s not only about opening an easy way for clients/potential clients to communicate with the business. It’s also about enabling easy and fast financial transactions, improving customer satisfaction and increase sales by having a machine that solves problems, “knows” how to talk to users in a human way and can work nonstop.

You don’t need an app for this – one of the biggest advantages of chatbots is that they’re an added service. They can be integrated into existing platforms, saving the need in another (unused) app.

Further more – where there are users – there’s attention and where the attention is – there are ads. No more busy feeds, instead – direct and personal message. You’d probably be able to customize your personal message according to past interaction, interest and engagement. Client retention will be easily achieved, as it’s a one-on-one conversation and it’s saved on your chat inbox.

Direct messaging is definitely going to be one of the main ways to communicate with clients and as it’s a new territory from a business perspective – should be learnt, tested and then tested again, optimized and then optimized again… until the next best thing will come.

We’re curious to know where it all takes us.

 

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How we spread (online) magic + 7 bonus tips

Another wonderful edition of the Brand Magic Summit by Mind Initiatives is behind us!

The Brand Magic Summit, in 25 words, is a big annual brand event, that gathers some of the sharpest international minds in the branding world and brings them all under one roof, in Mauritius!

Quantum_How_To_Spread

This year, we were honoured to work on the online marketing of the summit for the third consecutive year. We learnt and improved from the years before, so here is how we spread the magic, the 2017 version.

Search for some winning marketing tips within the article.

Bringing excellent international speakers year by year. 2017 panel.

Bringing excellent international speakers year by year. 2017 panel. Photo credit: logos publicity

Website Re-launch

As all marketing mediums should drive traffic to the website, we were much depended on its re-launching. That happened around mid March, so we went straight into pumping the messages across several digital channels: Google search, display, display remarketing, Facebook, LinkedIn… (And Twitter, but in another way so wait for it and read on!).

Google

Search: Similarly to last year, we ran with a search campaign that was targeting search phrases such as “marketing summit” or “branding conference mauritius”. We also created some new ad groups for searches that include the keyword 2017 and of course, any search related to the “brand magic summit”. The intention of the users while searching these is a marketing opportunity one shouldn’t miss.

Tip #1: Add a remarketing search campaign to your AdWords account. It reduces the cost + nothing like showing how strong you are on Google to past visitors.

Display: this year we planned it so that the display campaign was booming close to the summit, but not too close, as there’s a registration deadline dictated by the HRDC. At the peak of the campaign it reached nearly 143,000 impressions in one day.

The peak of the display campaign

The peak of the display campaign

Tip #2: check placements performance on your display campaigns, you might want to prevent your ads from appearing on mobile apps.

Display Remarketing: if you’re a regular reader of this blog, you already know by now what a firm believers we are in remarketing. So this year we were able to add a remarketing display campaign, dedicated to those who visited the website. Unfortunately, a technical issue caused it to not reach its full potential, but the audience we did accumulate was retargeted and well aware of the summit 🙂

Tip #3: Google’s remarketing tag can save information up to 540 days so If you’re launching a website, even if you’re not planning to create Google campaigns soon, implement your pixel and start accumulating information about your website’s visitors in your Google AdWords account.

Facebook

The first actions on the Brand Magic Summit’s page were refreshing the overall look: profile photo, cover photo, descriptions and others. We also removed the word “Mauritius” from the page’s name and user name as it reached a strong positioning. We launched the activity with one small teaser (as time was pressing) that appeared in the print as well.

The teaser ad on Facebook. Same artwork was published in print. Artwork credit: FCB Cread

The teaser ad on Facebook. Same artwork was published in print. Artwork credit: FCB Cread

The main messaging on the page was as every year, the opportunity the summit opens up for branding, marketing, advertising and business people to meet international speakers in Mauritius. We used the speakers’ YouTube videos to promote this messaging even stronger.

On the day of the summit, we went live during the morning and for exclusive first interviews with the speakers. This year, we had more time to prepare and therefore we set up our tripod in a quite room where we could broadcast better videos. We also broadcasted the big announcement of the top brands and shared with the world the top Mauritian brand awards live!

“Mauritius is the hope for humanity” – one of the live videos we conducted during the day. 

Tip #4: if you want to promote live videos while they’re broadcasting, schedule in advance a sponsored campaign that will send to your page to watch the live video.

“Page Likes” Campaign – if you are a regular reader of this blog (#2), you know how much, to say the least, we’re not encouraging to put a budget (given it’s limited), on a “like” campaign. Exceptionally, we did run this type of campaign and the main reason was the live videos. We wanted to reach as many people as possible with our live videos during the summit itself and as followers get a notification about these, it’s effective to have large database of followers. 

Big followers database increases the buzz around live video.  

Tip #5: when creating a Like campaign (and any other…), try to run A/B test to see what brings better results. For example, you’d be surprised how small change to an images or text can generate far better results.

LinkedIn

As LinkedIn is a professional oriented network, a “company page” for an event is less relevant. We promoted the Brand Magic Summit on Mind Initiatives’ LinkedIn’s company page.

LinkedIn’s sponsored campaigns are relatively limited so all of our campaigns were running in a specific type of objective (unlike Facebook where we ran several types of campaigns, each aiming to achieve specific objective).

LinkedIn's professional targeting possibilities are excellent because of the amount of information users provide about their professional background

LinkedIn’s professional targeting possibilities are excellent because of all the information users provide about their professional background

The communication was coherent with Facebook and the main advantage in LinkedIn is the information the users provide about their professional background and as a result, better work/studies related targeting for marketers. In the case of the Brand Magic Summit, we targeted mainly according to seniority and job industry. 

Tip #6: LinkedIn’s default CPC is much higher than other platforms, try different bids and follow the results.

Twitter

Oh Twitter, Twitter… our cautious-love relationship continues.

We mentioned before that it seems like Twitter is not catching up on the competition with other social networks in terms of user growth and revenue. Although there aren’t simply enough users on Twitter in Mauritius in general and in the sectors we’re looking into in particular, there is a big user database worldwide. So that’s what we were aiming for the years before as well as this year, therefore the use in Twitter was almost solely during the day itself.

Linzi Boyd, one of the super stars speakers encouraged the audience to engage on Twitter (note the "Keep Your Phones Turned On")

Linzi Boyd, one of the super stars speakers encouraged the audience to engage on Twitter (note the “Keep Your Phones Turned On!!!”) Photo credit: logos publicity

This year, we had by far the most engaging experience so far. Much of the credit goes to the speakers. Not only we had the hounour of hosting Twitter’s jAPAC director of brand strategy, the two times Emmy award winner, Steven Kalifowitz but also all other speakers were highly engaging during the summit and encouraged the audience to do so as well.

Steven Kalifowitz of Twitter and Quantum's Chen Hindi, head of digital

Steven Kalifowitz of Twitter and Quantum’s Chen Hindi, head of digital Photo credit: logos publicity

We couldn’t ignore the peak in engagement so we tweeted and re-tweeted more during the day and reached nearly 300 tweets this year, double than last year and 2015.

Tip #7: If you’re going to use/want to test a platform for your business you’re not usually engaging with, try it yourself. Do some trial postings and engage with others to understand the platform better.

Quantum's team at the Brand Magic Summit. Note the live screen showing the tweet live feed Photo credit: logos publicity

Quantum’s team at the Brand Magic Summit. Note the live feed of the Twitter account
Photo credit: logos publicity

Until next time

If you ask us to summarize this entire experience on a professional level, we’ll say we had a lot of fun, as usual and learnt more, as usual. As for the results – we don’t think we’re objective to testify so we’ll just say that we hope to write a similar article in 2018 🙂

Have any questions about the marketing of the summit? Please don’t hesitate to leave them in the comments below and we’ll reply right back!

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What Should You (Digitally) Expect In 2017

That’s it, Santa has left the building, all the firecrackers on the island were used, and now it’s time to think more seriously about 2017, your business, its marketing plan and how it all connects.

So here’s what you should expect (and put your marketing focus on accordingly) in 2017.

06-01-2017-digital2017

Social networks

Which is fast growing, are they all here to stay and which you should REALLY pay attention to.

Quite obvious, Facebook is not going anywhere anytime soon. Here are directions to put the focus on:

  • Video. Facebook will keep growing its video content in general and live video in particular. Here is what we suggest, very simply put: include video in your 2017 marketing plan. It’s a necessity.
  • E-commerce. Facebook also added during the course of 2016 a dedicated area for businesses to showcase their goods – the “shop” tab. This is another sign of a very clear trend – as Facebook doesn’t want users to leave the platform – it improves the Pages more and more to become like websites. How does it serve you? Well, if you don’t have a website the shop section is a great place to create a catalogue of your products, present the prices, sizes, availability and any other information you’d like to provide to clients and potential clients. By adding the shop section, Facebook made another step towards the e-commerce world and we wouldn’t be surprised if users will be able to purchase goods directly on your page very soon.
  • VR. Virtual reality will become a game changer in the next few years. As Facebook owns Oculus Rift, we wouldn’t be surprised once again if this year it will integrate it in the platform one way or another (imagine for example, that you can offer a virtual reality tour in your hotel to potential clients. Remember it’s not the same as a simple virtual tour, as in VR the user is an actual “player” in the scene). As we write these lines, the options with VR are already quite impressive (see a glimpse of it in the video below) and it will only get better in 2017.

YouTube. It is not a 100% social media network but YouTube does have many of the characteristics. Social network or not, YouTube has over a billion users who generate billions of views every day. We keep bringing it up as a major part of your marketing strategy so as the #1 video platform online (really competing Facebook only), YouTube is not a channel you can ignore in 2017.

Musical.ly. If you’re targeting pre-teens and teens, you should pay extra attention to Musical.ly and its latest platform Live.ly (which is not surprisingly, about video – broadcast live video and talk on video group chat) this year. Whether you like it or not, understand the platform or not, this is where they’re spending their time these days. If things keep going well for musical.ly, it will explode in 2017.

Snapchat. 2016 was a significant year for Snapchat, also known in its new name (that also happened last year) – Snap. It launched its spectacles, introduced Memories, the very much needed feature in the platform and continued growing its user database, age and number wise. Predictions say that in 2017 it’s going for an IPO and it will be one of the biggest ever seen. With that said, the expectations for revenue growth will also be high, and that in turn, will create more space for marketers to showcase their brand and reach the massive audience on the platform.

Instagram. Facebook, the owner of Instagram, made some very good decisions lately about the app. Not only it developed its profiles for businesses and improved the feed significantly (“who to follow” suggestions for example, the ability to zoom in and so on), but also opened the sponsored ads platform to all marketers. Knowing that Snapchat is a big-fast-growing thing, Instagram also introduced “stories” – temporary updates, an identical concept (and name!) to Snapchat’s main feature. Further more, it started to include filters/drawing the user can add on the photo and by that, copied Snapchat again. Instagram is definitely a social network you should (if not already) start paying attention to in 2017.

LinkedIn. LinkedIn made a big move in April last year by launching ProFinder and entering the freelance for hire world. But later on in June is what really happened to LinkedIn. In a surprising move, the giant tech, Microsoft, bought it for more than $26 billion. The merge will have many implications, but in the context of marketing what’s important to understand is that the two are within the corporate world and their activities can be complementary. We can hope for the merge to accelerate LinkedIn’s growth and create more opportunities for marketers (for example – growing LinkedIn’s user database via the office 365).

Twitter. Funny enough, the acquisition of LinkedIn made Twitter’s share price increase. That’s obviously no coincidence – the hopes in the market were and still are that Twitter will be bought out. Twitter is losing its height for a while now and can’t keep up with the savage competition of other social networks. Only this year it closed Vine, its short video social platform that it bought in 2012 before it launched. Thus, Twitter’s future doesn’t look too bright so we’ll just say that if you are thinking of going into Twitter, make sure your target audience is really there and active on the platform.

Augmented reality

Virtual reality and augmented reality are both ways to experience situations, whereas augmented reality is when you experience the world around you as it is but with additional elements on your screen that combine into the “real picture” you see. One of the biggest phenomenon of 2016 was Pokemon Go. The AR location based app broke records in days and was one of the most popular apps in 2016. Marketers used the app to drive foot traffic to their locations. This was probably only the preview for what the future holds for us in terms of this technology.

Artificial intelligence, Machine Learning, Deep learning

Ok, these big words shouldn’t scare you. As we already mentioned in previous article, AI is a technology that is used around us constantly – FB’s face recognition algorithm (you know how Facebook offers you to tag someone and it recognizes their face?), speech recognition (read further), personal assistants like Siri and more. Machine Learning and deep learning are “sub” subjects within AI. Simple to understand examples: you show the computer many malwares codes until it can recognize computer viruses; you show the machine many dog images until it can recognize a dog. AI has become a “hot” topic so much that Mark Zuckerberg’s challenge of 2016 was to build “Jarvis”, his home AI assistance. We expect AI will become an important keyword in 2017. 

Voice search

Google has launched the voice search a while back but like any new habit, especially when it comes to something so common and regular like typing for searches on Google, it is taking time until it becomes the norm. In 2017 we will be seeing more and more people talking to their search engine rather than typing into it. It will be very interesting to see how the voice search will impact the organic as well as sponsored search results in search engines.

ChatBots

It could be that you have been talking to one lately but you didn’t know about it. ChatBots are programs that “know” how to manage a dialog. There are two main ways to build them – one is via a set of rules and the other one, more interesting is through an AI machine. You probably encountered a “live chat” on websites where you can talk to a representative online, but what you (maybe) don’t know is that some are operated by virtual assistants. In 2016 Facebook launched a ChatBot API for Messenger and it became extremely popular overnight – some of the biggest companies in the world started using a bot on their page’s messenger to improve their response time, their customer service standard (a bot can serve many people at the same time, doesn’t miss a message and works 24/7 and doesn’t need sleep). It is no surprise – the number of instant messaging users in general, not only Facebook messenger but also WeChat, Line, Viber and of course WhatsApp that is owned by Facebook, are now bigger than social media users. We can only expect that in 2017 the use of ChatBots will grow even more.

Personalized content marketing (and its distribution); Data mining and Marketing automation

We all know the necessity and importance of content creation. We’re at a point where there’s so much content created online that the only way you can win the game in 2017 and onwards is produce real high quality content and know exactly who and where to distribute it to. Creating a general post about “why you should visit Mauritius” and simply sharing it everywhere you can to get potential leads doesn’t work anymore. Creating a blog post of “why many Chinese visited Mauritius in 2016” and promoting it among frequent travellers Chinese users however, will probably be a better strategy. In fact, personalized content can be much more effective if you do data mining to analyze your customers behavior, create segments and use marketing automation to perform an action accordingly. For example – if you learn about purchase habits, preferences and even the time gap between purchases of the shoppers on your website you can plan the content of the sales emails sent to them accordingly. Within your Google campaigns you can increase or decrease bids according to the conversions of a specific keyword, increase budget for a successful Facebook campaign, etc.

Influencers marketing

Many brands are using “brand ambassadors”, the meaning is quite simple – people with many followers promoting specific brands/causes and being paid for it (it is important to say that on Facebook for example, it’s not allowed). As we argued, the internet is flooded with content and that creates a situation where users, meaning people, choose to “buy from”/believe people they know and trust, people whom they chose to follow. These people don’t have to be celebs on the big screen. Many of the influencers became famous/well known via the social networks themselves. You’ll find very easily famous YouTubers, Instagram leaders or Facebook public figures who impact dozens of thousands of people into loving a specific brand and eventually buying it. This trend will only grow bigger with the explosion of content year over year.

Whether Twitter is bought, ChatBots and AIs take over our lives, we’ll be playing with small creatures on our phone’s screen in the street or not – one thing is sure – 2017 is going to be an interesting year!

Have something to add? Please do share in the comments section below!

 

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This Was 2016

We did it in 2014, and then we did it in 2015, now it’s time to summarize 2016.

Every year we bring you some great summaries from the most interesting channels online, in one post. The end of the year is a good time to look back, understand what interested people, what they were searching for, what they cared about and what they were hoping for. This was 2016.

30-12-2016-blog

 

Google – Year In search 2016

Google’s year in search is created from “Google Trends” – a feature that reflects what are the hottest topics people are searching for. The video is moving, saddening, exciting and hopeful, all at the same time.

Facebook year in review

Facebook’s year in review summarizes the biggest moments on the biggest social network in the world. We give you a heads up – while last year’s year in review was more hopeful, the 2016 one is not going to be easy to watch. We certainly hope for the message at the end to become reality.

YouTube Rewind

YouTube’s yearly production to summarize its most viewed videos is simply impressive. YouTube is celebrating in this year in review “the videos, people, music and moves that made 2016”. It’s a lot of fun, so turn on your speakers.

YouTube Ads Leaderboard

YouTube also summarizes the most watched ads on the platform. Here you can find the top 10 most viewed ads on YouTube in 2016, and below you can watch the #1 ad on YouTube in 2016.

Musical.ly – Best Dances And Hashtages

We’ve already mentioned Musical.ly in this blog so we hope you know what it is all about by now. We couldn’t find an official Musical.ly video summary of 2016 but we did notice on Musical.ly’s official page the video below, summarizing the best dances and hashtags on Muscial.ly in 2016. If you’re above 20 years old, you might think it’s silly but if you’re in marketing, no matter the age, hang on there before you ignore one of the fastest growing social networks in the world with 130 million monthly users.

Time

It’s not about marketing nor online marketing, but in 2016 the world has lost some of the greatest public figures. Time Magazine summarized it in one sad video, that unfortunately is not up to date with some of the recent losses of George Michael and the actress Carrie Fisher. We sure hope that 2017 won’t take away as many great talents from the world.

LinkedIn
Perhaps a short video version of LinkedIn’s year, which was very interesting, exists but we couldn’t find it. Instead, LinkedIn summarized 2016 on the platform in a series of articles like “The most memorable articles of 2016” or “The jobs and industries with the biggest bonuses in 2016” as well as “LinkedIn’s top voices of 2016“. And if you’d like, here’s a 55 minutes webcast that was done live, created and broadcasted by LinkedIn and discussed what were the trends of the year on the platform and what should we expect next year.

Twitter’s #ThisHappened and Yahoo

We chose to talk about Twitter and Yahoo in the same breath because in a way, the both seem to be ending up in the same place.

Twitter, a sinking ship that might take a better turn in the upcoming year (especially if Donald Trump keeps using it as he did so far) and Yahoo, the search engine that has been struggling for years and lately was sold to Verizon, perhaps marking its end.

Then again, Twitter and Yahoo, with a user database of 317 million and 1 billion (which might already be out there with hackers…) respectively, we thought you might want to see what they have to say about the year that has passed, so here it is.

Twitter 2016 #ThisHappened

Yahoo – Year In Review Top Searches

To finish, if you’re into looking at this year in photos, Business Insider gathered the 42 most powerful photos of 2016. Enjoy it right here.

Here’s to a digitally creative, challenging, full of many moments that are worth to remember 2017!

happy-new-year-quantum-media-mauritius

 

 

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7 Awesome E-Card Websites For Your Holiday Greetings

16-12-2016-ecards

Holiday season is right around the corner and we’re sure you want to send out a nice, original e-card to your clients, family and friends but have no time to search for them. So we did that for you!

We searched, tried and sent to each other some early e-cards so we can share the best ones here with you. Ready, set, wish…!

  1. JustWink offers you cards that are interactive, completely custom made, funny and creative. You can upload your photo, add your “hand written” signature and many other things that will make your e-card sending completely enjoyable for not only the receiver but also the sender, yourself.
JustWink. Fun and Creative.

JustWink. Fun and Creative.

Have fun with custom made e-cards.

Have fun with custom made e-cards.

  1. If you’re into video this year (and you should be!), JibJab is a well known hilarious video e-cards website. All you have to do is choose the video you like, add a photo where JibJab can recognize your face and create a funny, happy animation with the faces you chose! We at Quantum know the website very well, here it is 🙂
JibJab. Just put your face there and let the fun begin!

JibJab. Just put your face there and let the fun begin!

  1. Punchbowl is an easy to use super simple and user friendly website where you can create your themed card and send it in an envelope to your friends, family and even your contact list. Unlike JustWink the only photo of your own you can add is the “stamp” on your envelope.
Punchball. Send your greetings in an envelope with your own stamp.

Punchball. Send your greetings in an envelope with your own stamp and send it to all your contacts.

  1. It’s probably not the first time you hear about Someecards, as these cards are quite common on your social media feeds. But what you might have not known is that you can create your own (some)ecard with it! You can custom make the colour, the drawing that comes along with it and write your own text. Someecards’ “thing” is that the cards are usually cynical and hilarious at the same time.
Someecards. Choose your drawing, colour, insert your text and voilà!

Someecards. Choose your drawing, colour, insert your text and voilà!

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Cynical and hilarious at the same time. Someecards.

Cynical and hilarious at the same time. Someecards.

  1. We can’t write a blog post without mentioning the most popular forms of images online today – GIFs! Although ChristmasGifs doesn’t enable you all the freedom and customization the previous websites do, it does offer some funny GIFs you can send personally and/or share on Facebook.

ChristmasGifs, animated fun GIFs

  1. Another fun GIFs website is GIPHY. Plenty of GIFs to choose from, share, send and even download. Enjoy and get ready to the addiction.

  1. If you’re into video, but you feel JibJab is too informal, Ojolie is for you. Most of the e-cards on it are paid but you can get the idea of the cards by signing up for the free version. Some of the videos are beautiful and original and we recommend that you try it out. Here as well, you can send your card to all your contacts.

Artistic and beautifully made. Ojolie.

Bonus: if you need to create invitations, Pingg is a website that not only offers a full customization of existing card designs but also include RSVP service, a map and of course the time and venue of your event.

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Pingg. Not only cards but also invitations you can add maps, RSVP requests and more.

To finish with a smile here’re some inappropriate Christmas cards 🙂 Don’t try that at home!

funny-inappropriate-rude-christmas-cards-dark-humor-80-584825e9aef01__605

Know some great e-card websites? Share them with us in the comments section below.

 

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