Effective Email Marketing – 10 Email Marketing Tips To Implement Now

Email MarketingEffective Email Marketing

Email marketing is an effective marketing option for many companies as it is so affordable. Effective email email marketing will bring in very targeted traffic to your website, when done right ! It can also be used to stay in touch with customers and keep current and any prospective customers up to date with any special offers you may have.   Email marketing is simply just writing an email and sending it out to customers that would have signed up to your list. These people will have been interested in your products and services so should be looking forward to your newsletter every week. It is important to have a “sign up to our newsletter” on your website for this very reason. But in order to have an effective email marketing solution for your website there are a few simple rules you need to follow.

1. Firstly, make it easy for anyone to subcribe. Paste a sign up form on your blog, facebook page, and any other social media channel you may be active in.

2. Send information to your customers that your list has signed up for. So if they have signed up to receive special offers, news announcements, tips, dailes etc send them offers on special offers. It is important to let people know what exactly they are signing up for.

3. Send a welcome email. Tell them they are now subscribed and let them know what they will be receiving. Tip:Try and include some sort of special discount in this email.

4. Try and make your email stand out from all the other emails by using some engaging subject titles. Ask a question, add some symbols, etc do not make any wild claims or use the word FREE in the subject line as this will usually go straight into the junk folder of your intended recepient.

5. It is also important to keep your email short and sweet and try not to bombard your reciepents with emails every other day.If they signed up for a weekly newsletter. Make sure to send your newsletter out weekly.

6. There are some people that will sell you email lists that you can use to send your newsletter to. However, we advise against this as you will be not sending emails to your targeted audience. More than likely will get alot of unsubscribes over time as well

7. Make sure the content of your email offers value and make sure what  your saying to your customers is the truth. You can also include any links, images and advertisments within your emails. As previously mentioned it is important that your email copy is of value to your readers. Linking to articles on your website is also a popular method of drawing traffic to your website.

8. Design your email to fit your brand. Many of the email programs such as mailchimp, aweber, contant contat let you design your own email. Use this feature to your advantage.

9. Try and put together a publishing calendar for your subcribers. It is important to make sure your newsletter arrives into your reciepients email every week. Either share the responsibilty among staff members or nominate someone to be in charge of sending out newsletters every week.

10. Think of mobile? Make sure your newsletter can be read on all mobile devices. Try some test emails first and tweak the email to suit your platform. Make your newsletter shareable! It is important to make sure your newsletter can be forwarded to friends, family etc Adding social media links to your newsletter will also increase your following on these social media platforms.

If you are looking to adopt an effective email marketing strategy into your business. Try implementing some of these tips into your newsletter now and see the results !

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SEO or PPC?

PPC or SEO

Source: Unbounce.com

The internet is a huge advertising medium with lots of consumers waiting to buy your product or search for information on your website. However, this comes with a few obstacles. More competition and more choice for your target consumers.This means you have to fight for their attention. Setting up a website and simply hoping that visitors will flock to your website will not get you far in todays world. Instead, you have to market your website  to the right people and let them know you have something of value to them. Your average visitor will arrive at your site through direct traffic, paid traffic or referrals. In this article i will discuss the differences between PPC and SEO and what you should choose to market your website.

Search engine Optimisation

. Otherwise known as SEO research has shown that as much as 80% of people will search and look for reviews before they purchase their desired product or service. So in order to stand out from the crowd you need to implement some basic SEO on your website in order to get found on Google.  Implemeting meta tags, Alt tags, and writing some unique content will improve your seo rankings and bring in some more visitors to your website. These are some quick easy fixes for any website. The good thing about SEO is that it is entirely free apart from your labour of course. Unlike PPC, you also do not need to pay for clicks so there will also be no extra cost either.  However, bear in mind SEO takes time and work and sometimes it may takes weeks to see your results

PPC Advertising

Paid advertising otherwise known as PPC. This is a huge revenue stream for Google. You create an advert aimed at your target customer. When this customer goes searching for your product they will then see your advert looking at them within the paid listings which are located on Top and right hand side of each search results page. Once they click on your advert they will then be brought to your website where they will then make a purchase. This is paid advertising.  How much you bid will determine where your ad will appear in the search results as your competition will mostly likely be doing the same thing. The good thing about this type of advertising is that it is highly targeted and you can control how often your ad appears within the search results. There are other metrics such as location, time of day your ad appears etc. PPC Advertising is targeted traffic instantly to your website or blog. It is also important to set up a maximum budget you are prepared to spend every month on your Paid advertising otherwise you may find yourself with a big bill.

SEO or PPC?

When deciding which method is right for your website it is important to set out what you want to achieve.  There are clearly pros and cons for both of these methods and of course one of these methods costs money. I think SEO is a long term strategy for your website and any work that is done in this area will be rewarded  by increased organic listings. PPC is of course instant traffic and will certainly drive sales  for your website if needed.   Like anything, both methods require research to see which is the best method for you. Take your time and consider your options.

Digital Marketing and SEO – Why Digital Marketing Does Not Work Without SEO

Digital Marketing and SEODigital Marketing and SEO

When it comes to digital marketing  search engine marketing otherwise known as SEO is an important part of the digital marketing Strategy as there is so much to be gained from making this a large part of your overall strategy.

Alot of websites at the moment fail to properly optimise their website which causes the lack of potential traffic to your website . Traffic = Revenue, so this is why digital marketing and SEO should be implemented together in any digital strategy. In this article I hope to explain the significance of SEO and why it is needed in any digital marketing campaign you may be looking to implement in the future.

Search engine Optimisation is a process of obtaining high rankings for your website/blog in the search engines. There are many ways to achieve this result along with certain strategies that must be implemented in order to achieve the desired goal. In this article i have provided some instant tips that you can implement straight away to see improved search rankings within a few weeks.

1. Social Signals

It is imprtant that you have a social media presence online and that you contantly engage with your customers and encourage social sharing. Whilst Google still take notice of text links to your site ( as long as they are relevant to your content). It is also important that you build up your links over a period as anything else will see you get penalised by Google.

2. Meta Tags

Meta tags are used to let the search engines know what your website pages are about they are also used as links from the search engine to your website. Without implementing meta tags across your website you run the risk of low search engine rankings. It is also important that your website pages are focused around one action and one keyword. Then focus your meta title tags around this keyword.

3. Unique content

Writing content is tough but it is also the best way of bringing traffic to your website . When you write keyword rich articles you increase your chances of ranking for that keyword within the search engines. This is how digital marketing and seo really come together. It is also wise to have a content marketing strategy in place so content is produced on a daily basis. Write for the reader  and Google will reward you. Engage in keyword  stuffing and you will find yourself being penalised. You have been warned!

4. Google Plus

Are you on Google plus? If your company is not on Google plus its is also important that you submit your details to Google and claim your Google places listing. This is a vital tip that most companies fail to do which loses them lots of ranking potential. So if you have no Google places listing for your business go and claim your listing now !

5. Bloggers

If your a business selling a range of product it might also be worth making contact with the prominent bloggers within your industry. Giving them FREE product will encourage them to blog about yourproduct which will results in increased brand exposure for your business .

6. Alt Images

Alt Images are also  an important ranking factor in Google. If your website or blog has lots of images on the website check to see if you have optimised your images for the search engines by hovering them. Most will show 2622626.jpg! It is now time you went back and changed all these image name to a description of the image. This will let the search engines know what the images are about and will be another reason to rank your website higher in the search engines.

7. Mobile

Finally. Make sure your website is optimised for mobile. Everybody has smartphones now and research has shown that more and more people are using their mobile phones to search for their information. If your website is not optimised for mobile your potential customer will go elsewhere.

I hope you have found some of these tips useful and if you can implement one or two of these on your own website as part of your digital marketing and seo strategy you will gradually notice the difference over time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Augmented Digital Marketing- the Future of Everything

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Have you seen the new Pepsi Max augmented reality bus shelter ad?   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Go9rf9GmYpM&feature=share   If so, are you aware of its implications for the future of well, just about everything? In the ad, the good folks at Pepsi Max replaced the see through fibreglass wall of an ordinary bus shelter with an augmented reality screen. Unsuspecting bus passengers were subjected to a baggage of dramatic, Sometimes terrifyingly realistic moving images including tigers, explosions and car chases. Whether the ad was designed to increase sales or Pepsi Max or build greater Brand Awareness is a somewhat moot point. What is clear that you would not want to have a heart condition and be waiting for a bus in a bus shelter with one of Pepsi’s secret augmented reality screens. Even if you weren’t of a nervous disposition, you might well be by the time the bus arrived.

 

Pepsi tiger

 

 

What is more certain is that Facebook is rapidly stepping up a campaign to forge for itself a even more prominent position within the Digital world. Not content with recent acquisitions of WhatsApp and Instagram, Mark Zuckerberg’s social media empire has now purchased the ground-breaking, extremely hot Augmented Reality company Oculus, in a deal reputedly worth over $2b. Undoubtedly, Facebook see this acquisition as a smart piece of business, perhaps a potential world-beater as well as an innovative way of giving Facebook and its sister companies a platform with which to interact and market to users, clients, affiliates and even rival businesses. Perhaps it’s Facebook’s version of Google Glass. In acquiring Oculus, will the Facebook experience develop into a kind of real time inter-connective video game instead of the benign social media exchanges that Facebook users currently enjoy? Anyway, the end result of all this augmented reality activity is that – whether or not we like it – we all soon be entering a Brave New World of Digital Marketing featuring cutting edge high-tech innovation that will redefine and expand the concept of customer interaction. Should Augmented Reality catch on – and there is every indication that it will – then it is certain to have a profound impact upon just about everything – TV, mobile phones, laptops, tablets and social media as well as the future of Digital marketing. If tigers and helicopters can suddenly appear in the walls of bus shelters then it can’t be long before we will have virtual figures popping up from the screens of our Ipads, laptops and mobiles to engage with us about various products or marketing campaigns. Remember the famous scene in Star Wars where a hologram of Princess Leia popped up out of R2D2’s metal head? Well, that’s what our everyday lives will be like in a very short time   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUncfeCeYZ8   Such highly effective and realistic virtual advertising may make it difficult even sometimes impossible to tell the difference between augmented reality and reality itself. And it won’t just be bus shelters and social media platforms that will be affected. Most of what we currently take for granted may change dramatically. For example, what will Augmented Reality affect e-books and in particular, children’s e-books? How long will it be before eBooks enhanced by augmented reality will be reading themselves to children at night? Is it such a stretch to imagine a future where virtual reality holograms of Alice in Wonderland or Where the Wild Things Are play out from the enhanced pages of e-books in real time and in living colour? Dart and Luas journeys will never be the same again, not to mention waiting at bus stops or airports or indeed, anywhere else where commuters gather. Ferdia Mac Anna

How Digital and Social Media Marketing are Changing the Face of Fashion Week

Are you connected to the internet? If so, you’ve just been given a front row seat to Fashion Weeks around the world. With Digital and Social Media Marketing in full force this season, our relationship with the fashion industry is changing. The barriers are down and you no longer have to be a celebrity, designer, photographer, journalist or fashionista to have live access to next season’s collections.

london

 

How Digital and Social Media Marketing are Changing the Face of Fashion Week

As the Spring/Summer 2014 fashion season began we saw Pinterest create a new form of editorial content to showcase the highlights of from New York, London, Milan and Paris. Shortly after its launch an email was sent to followers announcing the latest pins, as well as related boards on fashion from fellow pinners, proving that Pinterest is not just a pin board. It is social too.

In New York, the Kenneth Cole hired a team of pro-viners to capture a truly unique, behind the scenes perspective in 6 second bite size clips, which were live-streamed them from their websites.

Here in London, while all catwalk shows were live-streamed on YouTube through BritishFashionTV, in a new twist to tradition, Clements Ribeiro chose to launch their new collection exclusively online launch using video to capture the spirit of their Rio inspired retro tropical glamour.

Fashion forward designer, Holly Fulton kept to tradition with a gorgeous collection presented at her catwalk show at Somerset House but also used EBay as a platform to highlight her A/W13 capsule collection to celebrate London Fashion Week. This was a very savvy move to broaden her appeal and promote her brand.

Designers aside, the role of bloggers at Fashion Week internationally, cannot be underestimated. Some 2000 fashion bloggers alone, registered to attend London Fashion Week this season, prompting the British Fashion Council to implement a blogger strategy, which it hopes to apply within the next year. Until then the best blog posts are being captured in their Blog Portal featuring street style and news from the world’s fashion media.

As the lines between digital and physical becoming evermore blurred, how long can the traditional format of Fashion Week be retained? Will catwalk shows become a thing of the past? How will the role of fashion bloggers develop?

However things transpire, the fashion space is definitely one to watch.


Digital on Tap: How to Market your Business

Digital on Tap: How to Market your Business

At present the digital space is evolving at a breath taking speed paralysing traditional marketing methods and dismantling previous marketing modes of measuring the customers buying cycle. Terms such as ‘it is all about mobile’ and ‘always on’ are ubiquitous in the marketing industry.

That being said, digital marketing is already progressing to the next stage in its evolution and although it may seem futuristic, the thought processes of some tech companies and digital entrepreneurs as to how digital will look tomorrow and beyond is astonishing. Dahlström and Edelman observe the process as shifting from being “always on to a concept of also always Relevant, responsive to the consumer’s desire for marketing that cuts through the noise with pinpoint delivery” (mckinsey.com, 2013).

The majority of marketers and businesses are coming to terms with matching their products, services and brands to what the customer is searching for an all devices. However, tomorrow’s consumer may be searching by means of body gestures, voice recognition and visual images coupled with the never ending array of new devices which allow for augmented reality (mckinsey.com, 2013).

Digital Marketing now and tomorrow

Warby Parker, a web retailer which specialises in eye ware, utilises the evolving digital techniques to allow visitors see what accessories actually look like when worn by means of a webcam. Glasses are delivered to a customer’s home free of charge and if incorrect can also be returned free. The user experience also includes a standard pupillary distance measurement by means of a credit card held against a person’s face as a measurement guide. A user can upload a picture of their own facial features helping to personalize user involvement and offer more authenticity (warbyparker, com). This technology proved to be commercially successful for the company and helped with building customer relationships.

Adobe is a major multinational computer company which specialises in software and digital platforms and recently launched a number of new digital capabilities. For example, the ‘Master market profile’ is a tool allowing marketers to measure audience participation in real time across multiple channels creating one unique visitor profile incorporating CRM and so forth. In addition, Cameron acknowledged that “these profiles can be used to create and share audience segments in order to deliver more personalised ads and content through email, digital, mobile and social campaigns” ( cmo.com, 2014).

The introduction of Google glass under the guise of wearable technology has been around for some time. The first impression for some may be that this concept may be only for individual use or for entertainment purposes. However, the following capabilities auger well for Goggle glass as a marketing tool as explored byRooke.

  • Retail stores could show messages to glass users when they pass the their premises embedded with special in store offer and promotions, a powerful marketing opportunity for savvy retailers
  • Can be utulised with Google Wallet to facilitate on line purchases
  • Or codes could be use to redirect glass users to a website where products may be bought or reviewed
  • Google Glass contains image recognition software which allows a picture to be taken including additional information relating to pricing products and purchase on line via Amazon (utalkmarketing.com, 2013).

The above mentioned are only some technologies which may become mainstream someday. The arrays of digital marketing channels available are varied from Google applications to Facebook and beyond. The pace of change is meteoric and there is little sign of a slow down on the horizon concerning all things digital. One central factor amidst all the digital development is the danger of concentrating too much on the technology and forgetting about the customer. At the end of the day the customer is always king and their needs and wants must lye at the heart of all marketing campaigns, digital or otherwise.

How Digital Media is Changing Online Fashion Brands

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How Digital Media is Changing Online Fashion Brands

Fifteen years ago M&S were very focussed on store layout, store launches, catalogue production, and the Christmas shopping season. All of their activities followed a central idea – relevance to the customer’s demands.

Fashion is constantly in flux. But underneath, what’s important in fashion retail stays true: Cater to the needs of the customer by using insights to be relevant and fashionable, and to quickly adapt to what sells. Advances in technology, while daunting, actually help meet these goals when used correctly.

Gaining insights from reviews

At M&S, to get feedback on the latest ranges of clothing they would visit flagship stores, speak to the shop floor, and run focus groups to determine what customers wanted. But now, retailers can instantly aggregate content from customers online to adapt in real-time, and make smarter decisions faster. For instance, are reviews saying that the pockets on a pair of trousers are too small, the fit of the shirt too long on most body shapes?

The key is to use technology to get the feedback that’s useful in driving change – and not be paralysed by it. Feedback is a rich resource to the fashion buyer who no longer has the luxury of working season by season, but has to meet the demands of three to four week fashion runs. They are on a constant cycle to meet trends – trends which reviews reveal.

Meanwhile, customers get to poll UGC to make their own purchases and find the right products for them. When shopping for a shirt recently I was able to feed from opinions to help inform my decision. And not just from any other customer, but from others that show they have similar tastes to me and are in the same age group – making my purchasing more informed and intelligent.

Replicating in-store experiences online with virtual fitting

To meet the needs of Omni channel shoppers, fashion brands have to bring the best parts of the in-store environment to online shopping. Thomas Pink was one of the first retailers in the UK to start experimenting with virtual fitting rooms, giving shoppers a photographic realisation of fit. They’ve gained a conversion rate of 21% from shoppers using the facility.

ASOS has a fit visualizer tool that allows customers to compare specific measurements of an item they are looking to buy with a similar item they already own by displaying and overlaying silhouettes of both garments. The tool has proven to reduce fit-related returns by up to 50% on other ecommerce sites.

Bringing digital initiatives in-store

Incorporating digital techniques in-store, M&S is trialling new multimedia zones in its stores that combine digital touchscreens, video walls, and displays of outfits to provide shoppers with inspiration. The Style Online touchscreens help shoppers keep up-to-date with the latest fashion trends and provide a digital stylist tool that enables shoppers to combine different garments and accessories to create their own personalized looks.

Burberry, known in the fashion world as true digital innovator, launched its flagship “store of the future” on London’s Regent Street earlier last year, which features technology such as RFID tags in its clothing and accessories so a customer trying on a garment can view more information about where the garment was made or how it was designed when they try it on and look in the mirror.

Burberry is also looking into sensor technology that would help customer service assistants identify who a customer is as they walk in to a store. The technology would pick up on details available on those consumers’ mobiles, through an app or from publicly available social networking data.

Speeding up the product cycle

Getting people talking about new product launches is important in every industry, and especially so in fashion, where public perception is everything. Sparking conversations around new looks is huge, and many retailers are using digital elements to spark that chatter immediately upon reveal (or even before) – a departure from the standard waiting period between the elite catwalk and public availability.

All eyes will be on Burberry as we lead up to London Fashion Week commencing in September. They’ve already digitised the catwalk by launching Tweet walk, which brought its runway collection to a Twitter audience before it hit any physical runway. Their Autumn/Winter 2013 collection allowed customers the ability to order what they see on the catwalk straight from their mobile devices with a novel twist – customization using the brand’s proprietary technology.

What about the delivery jet-setters of the fashion world? They’re the ones offering super-fast delivery for those in need of an almost-instant fashion-fix. Oasis is claiming a fashion miracle by offering 90 minutes to certain towns and cities in the UK.

Advances in technology can seem daunting, but in fashion (and truly, all industries) they’re an opportunity to better serve customers’ needs. In the end, the success of digital initiatives depends on how well they do just that.

 

Fashion, SEO and Digital Marketing – Don’t be a Dinosaur

 

dinosaur

 

Fashion, SEO and Digital Marketing

Digital marketing as a mega-trend is quickly revealing Early Adopters and Laggards. Where are you on that spectrum?

A brief history of business technology:

• In the late 1980s you had to have a fax machine (and fax number on your business card) in order to be seen as a credible business
• In the late 1990s, no legitimate company would be caught dead without a website (in fact, any company without a website was probably dying as a result)
• In the late 2000s (and more so every day), any business without a proactive plan to manage social media was falling behind its competition
• In the 2010s, if you still have a fax machine (and fax number on your business card), you may be in more trouble than you thought

Increasing your web presence and social media footprint has never been more urgent. Whether you’re just starting a business or trying to make an existing one more accessible and appealing to customers, now is the time to dump the fax machine, jump on SEO, and avoid extinction. Take a look at the Diffusion of Innovations bell curve.

graph

With respect to a viable web presence, where would you plot your company on this adoption curve? The latest adopters in this familiar model have traditionally been labelled “Laggards,” but in the world of SEO and social media, latecomers are plain old Dinosaurs because of the extinction-level event that is created by their inattention.

American fashion designer Tory Burch founded her label in February 2004, the same month that Mark Zuckerberg launched Facebook from his Harvard dorm room.

In the fashion industry, Burch’s rise has been nearly as striking: the 45-year-old CEO has expanded her line of ready-to-wear clothing and accessories to more than 450 department and specialty stores worldwide, as well as dozens of Tory Burch boutiques in the U.S., Europe and Asia. She opened 20 new shops, including several in international cities (Osaka, Seoul, Hong Kong, Kobe and Taipei), in 2010 alone.

Much of her success can be linked to an aggressive digital strategy, says Miki Berardelli, who has served as chief marketing officer of Tory Burch since 2009. The company launched ecommerce immediately after opening its first shop in downtown Manhattan, and they generate more revenue than any physical store.

Burch is one of the few designers to maintain a direct, on-going dialogue with her friends and fans on Twitter which she does in an easy-going and authentic manner. The industry as one of the leading manifestations of on-going brand-developed content.

How else have the company’s marketing efforts changed?

They continue to focus on all things digital. They redesigned their website earlier this year, which was very much about pulling all of the content [they have developed] into the shopping experience … [and] supporting mobile commerce. They have also done a lot in the social media space.

Lately they’ve been focusing on the intersection of social, local and mobile, whether that’s for a new store opening in a specific market, or driving traffic into stores. Given the rapid growth of the company, they’re also focused on analysis of their marketing efforts to ensure that they are effective.

Special thanks to Jim Madsen for the excellent dinosaur art. Enlarge to enjoy the detail.

Digital Vinyl Revival. Digital Marketing and the Unlikely Comeback of Vinyl Records

Students and the undrr 25s have contributed to the comeback of vinyl albums

Students and the under 25s have contributed to the comeback of vinyl albums

 

One of the most surprising success stories of the digital era is the resurgence of sales of vinyl record albums. http://theweek.com/article/index/254901/the-baffling-revival-of-the-vinyl-lp. Supposedly made redundant over twenty years ago by the rise of CDs coupled with the dominance of music downloads on Digital marketing giants iTunes and Amazon, LPs have made a remarkable comeback. Now, along with music streaming, vinyl albums constitute a growth area in the music industry. http://mashable.com/2014/01/07/vinyl-comeback/

The big success story is Digital Streaming which increased by over 30%, achieving a record 118 billion total streams mainly due to the emergence of Spotify and Pandora. http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/digital-music-takes-a-dive-as-record-sales-slip-again-in-2013-20140108

Vinyl Records sales chartAs a lover of vinyl albums, I am delighted by the renaissance of the LP. However, it is unlikely that the vinyl album will ever achieve the dominance it enjoyed in the 70s and 80s. To put things in perspective, in 2013, LPs sold approximately 6.1m, a fraction in comparison with the $15b in revenue achieved by US vinyl sales in 1999 but still an unlikely triumph. Last year, CDs sold 165m while downloads peaked at 118m. (http://money.cnn.com/2010/02/02/news/companies/napster_music_industry/)

However, though it is refreshing – as well as a real boost for music lovers – that in this age of instant gratification and accessibility the music market has re-embraced a technological dinosaur such as the vinyl record album, one big question remains: why?

There are many theories, including the appeal of owning a beautifully packaged artifact. Another reason could be a perceived backlash against digital music in general. However, as AFP’s Alfons Luna says, ‘Vinyl offers a richer sound than downloadable digital songs which although hiss-free, lack the ‘warmth’ of vinyl records.”

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5glTYYzYiJya3Y0gQ–FOwyGJnE4Q?docId=a40ab03a-a4ea-4dc7-8b46-1deb6894f5f9

Digital Marketing has played a major role in offering the vinyl lover a better choice of product along with a richer online shopping experience, particularly since the emergence of specialist or niche online vinyl retailers Discogs (http://www.discogs.com/) and Amazon Marketplace (http://www.amazon.com/Vinyl-Records-Albums-LPs-Eps/b?ie=UTF8&node=372989011) along with small independent records stores like Disc-Covery (http://www.disc-coveryrecords.com/).

Now, the customer can avail of competitive prices and a wide choice of product from traditional (Bricks) selling (ie major retailers Tower and HMV along with independent record shops) as well as (Clicks) online marketplaces Amazon, Discogs and others. Irish vinyl retailers Spindizzy  http://www.spindizzyrecords.com/,Freebird https://twitter.com/FreebirdRecords and R.A.G.E. https://www.facebook.com/RageDublin have yet to fully embrace online sales though most continue to increase Brand awareness and drive sales through maintaining a strong digital presence on social media including Twitter, Facebook and You Tube.

One of the great benefits of going online though, is that it’s possible to track down virtually any vinyl album ever released. Recently, I sourced a used copy of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s 20 Greatest Hits. My budget was around 25e and I had several criteria:

–       Reasonable price

–       Easy to use online service experience

–       Good quality or near mint condition of product

–       Cheap shipping rates to Ireland

Amazon Marketplace’s search engine is easy to use and turned up a wide variety. However, accurate shipping rates to Ireland were hard to access. Prices were mostly in sterling which involved using a currency converter tool: http://www.xe.com/currencyconverter/

CCR

Discogs’ search engine is more elaborate and involves clicking on a number of links including ‘artist’, ‘album title’ and ‘media’ i.e. ‘vinyl’ before you arrive at a scroll down menu listing of available items. However, the site is relatively easy to use and within a minute I had a choice of over twenty records. Discogs provides easy to access and accurate shipping information on a link marked View Shipping and Payment Information). Many of the traders list prices in euro, which swung my choice. I bought from Discogs and received the LP within a few days. https://www.discogs.com/sell/order/2036419-9

The comeback of the vinyl album is for my money, one of the best benefits of the digital era.

By Ferdia Mac Anna

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Mobile Marketing Trends

Mobile Marketing Trends

By the end of 2013, there will be more mobile devices on Earth than people (Cisco via Mashable, 2013).

This statistic highlights the growing importance of having mobile functionality as part of a business website. Mobile commerce continues its upward spiral unabated with more consumers utilising mobile devices such as Smartphones and tablets as their primary method for browsing, researching and purchasing products online. Ireland is no exception to such statistics as mobile adoption and ownership increases, Adashkevich notes that “The market penetration of mobile usage in Ireland is actually over 100% with 5.52 million active mobile phones at the moment” (digitalmarketinginstitute.com, 2012).

These trends have explicit consequences for businesses unsure of how emerging digital technologies may affect, alter or disturb their very existence. Many industry commentators view the mobile device as ‘an extension of ourselves’, ‘is ever present’ and is ‘always on’, therefore it is proving to be a unique tool in building and strengthening both company brand and customer relationship (Wollen, 2013). Mobile is always on so this presents opportunities for real time targeting, anytime anywhere, a mobile device user is reachable 24/7 and this trend is predicted to rapidly increase in the coming years.

Mobile Marketing Trends

“Mobile is a driving force in search and decision, and growing more important every day. Businesses need to understand this importance, learn how and when to reach the mobile consumer…” (Mobile Path to Purchase, 2013). As business and the hi-tech industry evolve, the result often provides both challenges and opportunities for eager entrepreneurs. For example Tesco home plus located in Korea was eager to increase market share. Tesco’s research indicated two key factors. One Koreans were identified as very hard workers which allowed little time for shopping and second, they were passionate mobile users.

The campaign centered on making the walls of local train stations resemble real life stores which integrated QR codes (quick response code) which were scanned with smart phones by a waiting public. The products purchased were guaranteed to be delivered the same day. The end result was a successful mobile campaign integrated into an overall digital marketing campaign which resulted in a 130% increase in online sales (scribd.com, 2012). Another notable advantage with a Mobile devise is the fact that they are portable and light making them a people friendly internet accessory.

IKEA is a renowned company which specialises in designing and selling ready-to-assemble furniture, appliances and accessories. The 2014 catalogue engages the customer through mobile by allowing them to place virtual furniture in their own homes touching on the concept of augmented reality. This term is defined as “A technology that superimposes a computer-generated image on a user’s view of the real world, thus providing a composite view” (oxforddictionaries.com). Pages are scanned by mobile devices then by  looking through the device the user can see virtually what a selected piece of furniture looks like in any room in their home. This approach is much more engaging than a paper catalogue as it personalises the experience and gives the user more control in the buying cycle (theverge.com, 2013). Mobile marketing trends such as the examples above will surly become common place as digital technologies evolve.

 

Additional Advantages of Mobile Technology

As mobile technology evolves there are numerous features which help businesses develop a better understanding of customer behaviour. For example, 02 are pushing Location Based Messaging. This approach allows companies to target customer in real-time when they are just about to purchase. When customers enter a specific location, triggered by GPS technology, which is geo fenced they receive tailored messages on their mobiles specific to chosen brand and products they have searched for previously making mobile more focused and less instructive (www.o2media.ie, 2014).

The Smartphone of today can perform multiple functions which could only be dreamed about a few years ago. For example, if you wanted to record or scan a business card, a barcode, a check which is ready to be deposited of basically anything that you can actually see, today’s phone contain this functionality. You can download an endless list of apps. Digital wallets are becoming a popular term as they can be utulised for buying online or in store and so forth. There are apps for banking, for storing and displaying discount and membership cards. PayPal allows a user to sent money from any location where there is internet coverage.

There are applications for specific phones which allow a user to keep their shopping cards in one location the list is endless (living.msn.com, 2014). This has evolved from the initial mobile phone which resembled a brick with a huge aerial and definitely could not be described as lightweight or as something we could not do without in our daily lives. The constant monitoring of Mobile marketing trends are a central factor to both businesses and marketer alike if they are to stay competitive and connected with their customers.