In the second instalment of our Summit debrief, we hear about current issues in video, search, email, customer journey mapping and find out how HMV has reinvented itself with a new focus on content. Insight from dotmailer, atom42, Branded3, Switch Concepts, Code Computerlove and Silverpop, an IBM Company.
Marketing Metrics Matter: Beyond The Essentials
Skip Fidura – Client Services Director, dotmailer
Email was the first channel that allowed marketers to track and measure effectiveness at the point of engagement rather than the point of sale, says Skip Fidura at dotmailer. The challenge now is that digital activity has to be justified, and so often marketers will measure performance using the metrics that are easiest to capture – for example opens and clicks. But these are merely ‘process measures’.
You want to be focusing on things like what device people are using to open your email, so that you can optimise your communication for that device. You want to be looking at the time they action your email so that you can optimise the send time. You also want to be looking at the post-click funnel to understand what customers are doing with your email, and whether they’re moving to a different device to action it.
Remember, engagement means different things to different people at different times, says Skip. Just make sure you’ve defined what it means to you.
Turn Your Bad Times Into Good
Andy Atalla – Founder, atom42
If your digital marketing is throwing up bad results, Andy Atalla at atom42 has some simple pointers to get it back on track. First, think about your site. Google wants to rank high quality websites that create valuable content – take a look at the SEO Starter Guide for the basic information – so you need to make sure you’re creating it. Think objectively about your website, and ask yourself what you would be looking for if you were Google. Make it easily accessible, and use tools such as Lynx, SEO Toolbar and MozBar to get an idea of how the search engines view it. Find and fix any 404 errors, trying to make them a little more entertaining than the default error message.
Next, evaluate your approach to building authority. “If anyone’s ever tried to go and get links, you’ll realise that no-one really wants to link to you just because you want them to. It’s a challenging space trying to build authority and, because people approach it just thinking ‘I’ve got to get links’, their field of vision is very narrow and they don’t see the real opportunities available to them.”
In terms of messaging, you want to be empowering and encouraging your customers to take action. In your Google listing, use a bit of character and try to say something a bit different. Think about the messages you’re offering during the conversion process. Make the user feel important, and personalise the message if possible. It can make all the difference to how a customer interacts with your brand.
The Future of PR
Laura Crimmons – Communications Director, Branded3
Public relations has changed significantly with the rise of social media and connectivity. The relationship between the public and the PR team is more direct than ever thanks to platforms like Twitter and Facebook, and conversations are two-way and increasingly immediate.
With the growth of 24-hour news cycles, journalism is now ‘always on’ and, as well as journalists, PRs have to think about engaging bloggers. This means more channels and more demand for content. Gone are the days of sending out mail merge press releases – everything now needs to be personalised. Social media sharing is a growing metric for journalism, with some journalists even having targets for social shares written into their job roles, so “if you can prove that something’s really shareable, it’ll encourage the journalist to write about it”. Rather than generating as large a reach as possible, it’s now a case of influence – reaching the people that have a more attentive following.
People in PR will need to learn new skills, and campaigns will need more layers and elements to meet the demands of new platforms and technology. Working with data analysts and SEOs will help PRs work smarter.
Our Story: Enriching the Customers’ Journey & Increasing their Lifetime Value
Laura Creamer – Relationship Manager, Silverpop, an IBM Company
Sonia Dorais – Head of Marketing and Communications, Switch Concepts
Each of your customers has likely engaged with you in multiple different ways, before and after purchase. Only by collecting together this data and using it to inform your strategy, says Laura Creamer at Silverpop, can you harmonise the customer journey and offer a consistent, relevant and personalised experience for your users.
Sonia Dorais at Switch Concepts notes how, when she joined the firm, the sales team were using multiple different technology solutions which didn’t talk to each other. This was the lasting effect of a merger and acquisition the year before. And although the business was using Silverpop, it was missing out on important opportunities to track the customer journey.
Sonia’s takeaways: get everybody using the same language in reference to customers and leads, and make sure this is consistent across all technology solutions. Define what the ‘customer journey’ means to your business and map this out, using it alongside well-thought-out buyer personas to aid onboarding, nurturing and post-purchase. Ensure your technology solutions are working together to provide you with the most relevant customer data, rather than using a number of disparate platforms. And make the most of the technology you’re using – you might have a wealth of unused data at your fingertips.
Transforming a Retailing Giant into a Content Provider: HMV Case Study
Louis Georgiou – Co-Founder and Managing Director, Code Computerlove
Dawn Williams – Account Director, Code Computerlove
After more than 90 years as one of the UK’s best-loved retail brands, in 2013 HMV went into administration, a victim of changes in the way we consume music and the worst recession to hit the UK in a generation. Happily, however, this hasn’t proved the end for the brand, which is now up and running once again. “This is a real story of transformation,” says Louis Georgiou, MD at agency Code Computerlove, who’ve been working with the brand since 2002. “And also one taken out of necessity.”
Recognising that HMV couldn’t compete in terms of price with the likes of Amazon, the retailer has focused on developing deeper, closer relationships with consumers through content. This has involved leveraging the things unique to the brand: credibility, relevance and depth in the field of music, movies and home entertainment. Recruiting writers from NME and giving the brand’s own staff the opportunity to contribute content the aim, says Code Computerlove’s Dawn Williams, has been to “relaunch hmv.com as a content platform that fulfilled more customer needs more often. Rather than being there when someone wanted to buy a CD, we were there when someone needed to browse or wanted music news.”
With full personalisation in place, the brand has sought to recreate the in-store browsing experience online and used content to drive new revenue streams. Now a thriving, focused online portal for music and more, in 2015 HMV picked up 4.6 million new users (73 per cent of total users), and the site has driven 40 per cent on online store revenue.
Written by Estelle Hakner and Jon Fortgang.