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When we talk about local SEO, Google Maps comes to mind. This is because Google Map results show up when a query implies local results are needed, for instance, when you look up something like “Italian restaurants near me”, or “managed IT Services San Diego”. Boosting your Google Maps ranking for relevant searches is becoming all the more important since Google Maps is the preferred navigation app for 67% of consumers. Google Maps listing helps new customers discover you, helps you stand out amongst the local competition, and of course, nurtures more leads and generates higher profits. Since we have already established that ranking high in google maps is another way to get on the first page of Google, here’s how to do it right:
To get started on Google Maps marketing, you need to check whether your business is already listed on Google Maps. Simply type your business name on the search bar and if it shows up with a location next to it, it means you already have a listing. If not, you first need to add your business to Google Maps. If your business name doesn’t appear on Google maps, you will see an option to “add a missing place”. Click on the link provided and add your business name, accurate location, and category. Choosing the right category makes sure your business shows up for relevant search results and allows your target audience to connect more effectively.
Don’t be alarmed if your business has already been added to Google Maps. Remember that anyone can add any business to Google Maps, but doing so doesn’t give them any control over that listing unless you claim your business. Claiming your business on Google Maps allows you to add more details about your business in addition to name, location, and category. Businesses with complete and accurate information are easier to match with the right searches and rank higher. To claim your business on Google Maps, you need to sign up for a free Google My Business account. Once you have created an account, you can choose “Claim this business” or “Own this business?” from the listings. Google will send you a postcard in the mail with a secret verification pin which has to be entered to claim the ownership of your business. After verifying your account, you’ll be able to make changes to your account information, upload new photos, and publish posts. Now that you have linked your Google My Business account with your Google Maps business listing, it is time to work on acquiring top search rankings and appearing in relevant local searches on Google Maps.
To start optimizing your listing for local SEO, your Google Maps listing information should be complete, accurate, and as thorough as possible. From your account dashboard, click on info, and update your business information, making sure to avoid inconsistencies in information across the web. Remember that Google’s algorithm assesses the correctness and integrity of information to gauge your credibility. for instance, let’s say you run a business called “New York coffee express”. Make sure this name appears the same in your Google My Business dashboard as everywhere else online like your business website, Yelp listing, and Facebook profile. Even slight variations, such as “NY coffee Express” can ruin your credibility and trustworthiness.
The same goes for your phone number. Always utilize a local phone number with your area code, and avoid listing a toll-free number since they are often used for spam. This further goes to prove that your business is indeed located at the provided address.
Also, be sure to keep your business hours updated so that people searching for your business will know whether you are open, closed, or opening soon at any time, as well as when your business will be open during holidays and other events. Businesses that update their business hours frequently are seen as active by Google, which helps them rank higher. Not to mention, you don’t want a bad review just because someone visited your store and it was closed despite appearing open on Google Maps. Also, you need to craft a keyword-rich business description that will help customers understand what you do, as well as rank for relevant searches. Make sure to list the unique selling points in your description to sell people on why you are the best.
Furthermore, make sure your business is listed in the appropriate category that matches properly in close context with the main keywords. You need to think this one through and choose a primary category that best reflects the core of your business. For the secondary category, type out your main for other relevant categories too.
Last but not the least, you need to upload photos and videos to boost your Google Maps listing rankings. If right now you were to take a look at where your traffic is coming from, I guarantee you it won’t be from the website or maps. It’s from images or photos. Even Google users can add photos directly to your business or at the time of writing a review. Visitors like a visual appreciation of a product, place, or service, and enjoy looking at pictures of the building, the parking space, photos of your products, peaks inside offices or workspaces, and even pictures of employees at work. Pictures say a lot about a business at a glance and help customers visualize what it is like to be inside. Not to mention, pictures show Google that you are an active business. High-quality images are useful for another purpose as well. Google’s highly advanced photo recognition technology shows up images for local search queries. Don’t let your pictures sit stagnantly. Be sure to upload new pictures frequently. Make sure that your pictures are either in JPG or PNG, sized between 10KB and 5MB, well-lit, and devoid of filters. NEVER use stock photos or videos on your Google My Business listing!
Consumers of today make sure to check out reviews from other customers before choosing a business or making a purchase. Since Google takes the preference of customers into consideration when ranking a business, it doesn’t come as a shock that Google Maps ranking depends upon how many positive reviews your business listing has received. In fact, research shows that Google reviews yield higher conversion rates than local SEO strategies and increase the likelihood that a shopper will visit your location.
Even if you are not getting many reviews, be proactive in asking for reviews from satisfied customers and clients, and be sure to respond to each review separately to encourage others to post reviews as well. Especially responding to those far and between negative reviews shows how proficient you are at solving customer issues and how much you care about your clients. Even better, ask reviewers to use appropriate keywords or city names within their review, which will help you rank above other businesses in your area. You should also use keywords to reply to all your reviews on Google My Business
To boost your rankings on Google Maps, make sure to craft a compelling and visually aesthetic landing page and attach it to your Google My Business listings. In addition to design, write powerful content punctuated with appropriate keywords, geo-tagged images, and related geo modifiers. Even having articles on your site that mention your city helps a lot!
Just like on Facebook, you should regularly publish content that directly appears on your listing page. Businesses that continue to push out compelling articles, photos, and videos appear active to Google algorithms and rank higher as a result. People who are searching on search engines can come across these pages as a result of your content and find your business. GMB posts are also beneficial for “Justifications.” Google might pull up a post to help ‘justify’ why a particular result is a good match for your query. For instance, if you look up “furnace repair bend Oregon”, this is what shows up:
For the first result, the justification is being pulled from the website, while for the second, one of the GMB reviews is used in lieu of justification.
It is not uncommon for users to ask questions about a Google My Business listing. As a business owner, you need to answer their questions and solve their issues. If there are no questions on your listing yet, you should determine the most frequently asked questions about your products and services and populate your page with those queries from a different email ID. Now login from your business email address, click on each question and add an answer. Ask your team members to like all the questions and answers, since the question with the most likes show up on the listing panel
UAE has the most active and sought-after startup ecosystem in the Middle East and efforts are continually underway to attract the brightest talent from around the globe, promote advanced technology, and create a truly knowledge-based economy. Recently, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai launched a plethora of new initiatives in a bid to fuel economic prosperity and help family-owned businesses, start-ups, and small and medium enterprises grow.
Touting the economy to be accelerating and moving in the right direction, His Highness took to Twitter to announce the innovative initiatives he launched at the ministry of economy Abu Dhabi to make sure young talent plays a part in UAE’s thriving economy.
During my visit to the Ministry of Economy where we launched projects to help our national companies access new markets,an economic research institute in collaboration with world leading univeristies and an international conference to be held on March to explore new opportunities pic.twitter.com/Kg3aaIwBLQ
— HH Sheikh Mohammed (@HHShkMohd) June 28, 2021
The new economic initiatives include an accelerator platform for family-owned businesses, geared towards helping startups in UAE tap into global markets, improve performance and build their brands, as well as enhancing their ability to attract investment opportunities, and speed up growth. Among the new initiatives is an economic research institute established in collaboration with leading universities (UAE Growth Lab), namely UAE University, Zayed University, American University of Sharjah, and New York University Abu Dhabi, as well as an entrepreneurial academy (Skill-Up Academy) that seeks to hone the entrepreneurial skills of citizens and residents through educational initiatives. The UAE will also have a scale-Up platform for start-ups looking to grow, and a web portal (Grow in UAE) to provide comprehensive information about policies and investment opportunities in the UAE and create new jobs in UAE. His majesty has also announced an upcoming global investment conference (Investopedia) to be held in March 2022, dedicated to focusing on new economic opportunities in the country.
These initiatives have cemented UAE’s position as the best place for young businesses to set up shop and are a testament to the sincere efforts made by the Government of the UAE to create a supportive ecosystem for the incubation of Gulf talent UAE in the country. This is also evident from the fact that 88 percent are highly optimistic about UAE’s economic growth for the next 50 years.
According to Sheikh Mohammad, “The post-COVID-19 world has brought several new shifts and a changing environment. Our economic work continues rapidly and is in the right direction. Our government team was reformed last summer so that all ministries and institutions work together with a focus on one clear goal, which is the UAE’s economic growth for the next 50 years.”
With most people still stuck in the midst of lockdowns or hesitant to leave their homes, online sales have never been higher, but so hasn’t the competition. As the pandemic continues to rage on, the stakes have never been higher for online retailers trying to compete with sellers flooding marketplaces left and right. If you want to increase sales, drive traffic, and inculcate an awareness of your product, you will need to increase your E-commerce marketing effort. If you are willing to go the extra mile to stand out in the crowd, and turn visitors into first-time buyers and customers into brand evangelists, here are a few out-of-the-box eCommerce marketing in UAE tips to try:
Top-of-the-funnel (ToFu) leads are prospects that have expressed an interest in your brand but aren’t ready to engage with you yet. These people are usually your first-time website visitors or new email sign-ups. You need to understand these customers better, create awareness about your product and then try to meet their needs. First things first, you need personal details from these customers, which can prove to be impossible to coax out during signup. One way to get these people to divulge personal information without raising red flags is through lead generation quizzes. Don’t we all love quizzes that say “which Starbucks drink are you?”, “which Olive garden entrée are you?” or “which style of the bag are you?” The purpose of such quizzes is to collect segmented ToFu leads and recommend products that suit their needs. In the middle of the quiz, you can ask users to enter their email addresses so you can save the results. Once the users complete the comprehensive quiz, they are redirected to a landing page with their results, a valid reason, and research-backed product recommendations. This way you are simply recommending which products suit their style/needs/habits, rather than hard-selling your products. Now that you finally understand your customers and their pain points, you can follow up on your leads with paid ads and highly targeted marketing campaigns.
We all know what upselling can do for our revenue. Even though most eCommerce stores are already capitalizing on upselling and cross-selling to boost their average order value, we are going to take it up a notch. We recommend that each of your product pages should incorporate two pricing options: regular price and member price. Offering a too-good-to-overlook price to your members highlights the obvious benefit of membership and pits it against the price of a one-time purchase. Non-subscribers risk passing on an exclusive member price, which I am sure they won’t want to do. Especially if you are selling a product that needs a refill, such as vitamins or medicines, offer your customers the options of one-time purchase as well auto stock. Offer a discounted price as well as free shipping to those who choose the latter. Sounds too good to resist, doesn’t it!
These days, most people want to buy from socially conscious businesses only. In fact, more and more millennials are changing their habits to be more sustainable. A study predicts that by the end of 2021, customers will spend more than $150 billion on sustainable brands. With the increasing demand for green business practices, buyers are willing to pay extra to go green. If you want to appeal to your environment-conscious demographic, start producing, packaging, and selling while keeping the environment in mind and make sure to make it the highlight of your marketing campaign. Whether you are going paperless or saving energy at work or using eco-friendly packagings like biodegradable pouches and compost bags, do make sure to let your customers know.
Don’t we all keep adding items that catch our fancy to our wishlist, never to look at them again? Unless you actually remember to buy a wish list item, which happens once in a blue moon, they simply slip your mind. As an e-commerce business, you have an amazing opportunity to tap into your prospects’ wishlists since they contain items that have already been chosen. Remember that your leads already wish to buy those items, they only need something like a gentle nudge or a little discount to complete the purchase. Wishlist reminder emails remind them of items in their wish list, notify them if their favorite items have gone on sale or if they are low in supply. If you want to convert idle wishlist items into sales, simply display those items against a powerful CTA to help your visitors re-consider the purchase and be redirected straight to them. You can include discount codes in your wishlist reminder emails that only apply to your subscribers’ wishlist items.
Google Shopping is becoming an indispensable part of eCommerce marketing in UAE in 2021 because of its ability to bring better-qualified traffic and higher conversions. Being somewhat of a comparison search engine, Google Shopping ads put your product right in front of potential customers, including their price and your store link. If your product description meets the customer’s search phrase, it will appear in front of the customer. Since they pre-vet potential customers by showing the product image and the price, so advertisers only get highly targeted clicks. Another benefit of showcase ads is that even if a prospect doesn’t immediately make a purchase on your store, you still get to introduce your store to a wide audience, and build a warm audience to remarket to at a lower cost.
All the businesses that appear in the SERPs are credible and authentic, though people may not have heard of them. Customers also trust Google, especially because of the price comparisons, which helps them get the best bang for their bucks. All you need to do to try your hands at Google shopping is to create a Google Merchant account, optimize your product pages, link your Google AdWords account, and create a campaign.
For online shoppers, nothing can be more frustrating than seeing “sold out” on their favorite product pages. While this experience can leave the customer disappointed and exasperated, marketers can leverage this situation to their advantage. You can somewhat lessen their frustration by offering out-of-stock notifications. This allows you to convert leads into customers once the item has been restocked. Meanwhile, try to redirect them to your best sellers or other similar products to get them back on track. This way, you’ll appease angry customers and improve your sold-out-page conversions.
In the world of eCommerce, 60% to 80% of carts get abandoned. If you wish to create an email campaign, make sure it’s around abandoned cars! People add a lot of items to their cart and then leave the website without finalizing the purchase. Whenever you see an abandoned cart, be sure to shoot them an email reminding them to go back. Increase the open rate of your abandoned cart emails by adding irresistible discounts and attention-grabbing headlines. Make sure you remind your shoppers that they have left something behind.
Dynamic retargeting ads are a relatively new trick in the book for marketing your online store. If you are not familiar with retargeting, it is a feature that lets you advertise to people who have previously interacted with your business. For instance, if you visit a website as a one-time thing but keep on receiving ads from the same business consequentially, you have been exposed to retargeting. Now imagine being shown the same product in ads like the one you had checked out; say hello to dynamic retargeting. You may have hundreds of products on your website but a dynamic retargeting ad only displays the product that a person had checked out earlier. So far, this feature is available on all major advertising platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, and Google. Dynamic advertising lets you capture leads who have already shown an interest in your website and products and are already ripe for the taking.
While you may already have incorporated product reviews and customer testimonials on your eCommerce store homepage or landing pages, only select users will eventually see and engage with them. Why not add them to your email marketing messages to widen their reach. When used right, customer testimonials and product reviews add social proof to your business and help visitors who are hesitant to buy from you. It is also a great idea to let testimonials and product ratings speak for the products/services/company in promotional emails instead of penning down lengthy product descriptions that no one will read. After all, a prospect is more likely to believe the words of an actual user than the brand itself. Start by handpicking your favorite testimonials and customer feedbacks and send out occasional emails to spread the love. This helps you create social proof with every offering.
You need a good eCommerce website to sell online, but building an eCommerce website from scratch can put you in a bit of a pickle. Luckily, the best eCommerce website builders simplify the entire process, all the way from designing your online store to set up product pages to managing inventory and tracking orders, so that anyone can set up their online store and launch their business without knowing a line of code! So, if you’re interested in selling products or services on the web, here are the biggest eCommerce website builders you should know about!
Wix is hands-down one of the most versatile eCommerce website builders on the market today, especially great for building eCommerce sites. With over 160 million satisfied users, Wix can even turn non-designers into web design pros. If you know how to operate Windows 10 or a Mac, you will easily get the hand of Wix.
Wix gives you everything that you need to launch your online store; be it 500+ pre-made templates to choose from for your online store, an intuitive drag-and-drop site builder, App marketplace for custom functions, a free domain name and SSL certificate, cutting-edge design features such as video backgrounds, animations, and scroll effects, multiple modes of payments, and even store management tools. In short, Wix has everything that you need to grow your site and generate leads!
The best part is that Wix is dead easy for anyone to learn and use, even someone with a rudimentary coding sense. Another benefit of using Wix is that it doesn’t charge any commission-free on any transaction, helping you save hundreds (or thousands) of dollars per year. Unlike other eCommerce builders, you can design unlimited products on Wix and there is no cap on the revenue you can generate from your online store.
The SEO tools of Wix also deserve a shout-out. They help you create an automatic mobile-friendly version of your website and optimize it. They also get your site listed on Google within 60 seconds. The Wix store manager makes it a breeze to track inventory, orders, and your product pages. If you want to add a logo or a blog to your site, you can do so without any third-party integrations. Wix is also super-affordable. The cheapest plan offers 20 GB of space, abandoned cart recovery, and integration with social media.
If you are looking for an eCommerce website builder that grows alongside your expanding business, you have chosen the right builder. This industry giant is a great option for people who don’t want to hit annoying limits about their site’s capability and wish to leverage omnichannel sales. What makes it different from others on the list is that this builder focuses more on big commerce. It’s one of the few platforms that offer B2B selling features such as quote management, custom price list, bulk pricing, and customer groups. BigCommerce sets quite a score by multi-channel sales, allowing you to list your products on eBay, Google Shopping, Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, and Amazon, and expand into new sales channels. This platform is great for wholesalers, international eCommerce sites, B2B sellers, and multi-channel sales, thanks to its secure and intuitive platform, WordPress integration, drag-and-drop building tools, custom checkout abilities, cross border fulfillment, built-in faceted search, and multiple currency support. BigCommerce also allows storeowners to integrate blogs into their eCommerce store for content marketing activities.
BigCommerce also offers plenty of optimization features for SEO and page load times. You can leverage robots.txt editing, Google AMP, and Akamai Image Manager, as well as enjoying a global CDN for faster load times. If you want to rapidly and remarkably grow your online store and sell without restrictions, the platform is the right choice for you, but it is not the best option for beginners! It’s not the easiest to use, and its prices reflect the number of tools and features you will probably never use. Plans start at $29.95 per month.
Trusted by 1+ million websites in 175 countries, Shopify is hands down one of the most powerful eCommerce website builders available on the market today. This web-based CMS gives you everything that you need to set up and manage your online store. Boasting 600,000 online stores and over $72 billion in revenue, the platform is usually the first choice of online store owners. Whether you are starting a new eCommerce business from scratch or expanding your physical presence to an online store, leverage Shopify’s Industry-specific templates and Industry-specific templates to get your online store up and running without any technical expertise. Each theme can be fully tailored to suit your needs. Shopify comes with an expansive Shopify App platform where third-party developers offer apps and plug-ins that help you append features and functionality to your store. From email marketing and social media integrations to shipping platforms, you are bound to find an app for anything you want.
What we especially love about Shopify is the world-class customer support you get. Whether you have a general business question or a technical question about the backend of your website, reach out to Shopify’s customer service team via live chat around the clock. You can even seek help from the massive community forum with answers from Shopify experts and current customers alike. On top of that, Shopify also has a robust knowledge base complete with hordes of podcasts, courses, articles, courses, and how-to guides written by Shopify itself.
All plans come with web hosting, unlimited bandwidth, over 100 different payment gateways to choose from, unlimited email forwarding, and a content delivery network for optimal performance. Shopify also gives you access to tons of marketing and SEO tools, mobile optimization, and analytics. With built-in abandoned cart recovery, you can catch incomplete sales. With Shopify, you can set up drop shipping, manage your customer rates, sync with 10 other sales platforms, or customize your checkout with personalized branding. Plans start at just $29 per month. You can try Shopify for free with a 14-day trial.
Weebly is the only free website builder, offering a full-featured platform for no price at all. Don’t let the free plan fool you into thinking that it must be a watered-down version of the real thing; Weebly provides you with a complete list of features that you need to get your online store up and running in no time; be it inventory management, in-store pickup, automatic tax calculation, shopping cart, etc. You also get unlimited products and in-store or delivery options at the checkout. If you want to garner the ability to receive payments through PayPal, add reviews, and abandoned cart emails, you will have to upgrade to the premium performance plan, which only costs $26. Weebly is absolutely perfect for handmade shops, home-based businesses, hobby sellers, small restaurants, breweries, and other local shops. You don’t need to be tech-savvy to be able to use Weebly. Weebly makes it a breeze to add new products, remove out-of-stock products, push updates, and track your inventory levels so that you can put your valuable time towards growing your business.
Since Weebly is powered by Square, you can also integrate the Square POS with your online sales system as well, if you are looking to manage your products and inventory all in one place. The easy-to-use drag and drop site builder allows you to launch your store with minimal effort and no coding. Like other eCommerce builders on our list, Weebly also gives you access to tools for shipping, inventory, SEO, and emails. Add Weebly’s product search to your online store to make sure your customers find what they are looking for. Add badges to products that have limited availability or are on sale. Add language translation, memberships, and other advanced features to your site by upgrading to the paid plans.
Squarespace is a creative’s wish come true. If you’re looking to make your online store as aesthetically attractive as possible, leverage hundreds of award-winning templates, combined with a strong inventory system and tons of high-end features, to create your creative, highly-visual website. When users cannot touch your products or interact with them, let visuals do the talking. Especially if you are a photographer, artist, or creative selling products, services, subscriptions, or digital goods, this platform is all that you need to brand yourself.
Even though the templates are stunning on their own, you can customize your chosen template with the help of Squarespace’s intuitive what-you-see-is-what-you-get (WYSIWYG) site editor, with little effort on your part. Use the intuitive and highly-responsive drag-and-drop editor to apply your branding, upload your images and videos, set up your product listings, and voila! Even if you are a beginner, looking for a fantastic-looking website right out of the box, anyone can build a modern and visually appealing eCommerce store using Squarespace.
Squarespace’s social media integrations help you narrate your brand story and sell your products directly within the platform. This makes sure that your customers never have to leave the page to buy something from you.
The Squarespace mobile app allows you to manage and edit your website on the go. Squarespace has built-in SEO tools, blogging tools, and analytics tools to help you manage your online store and make it a huge success. There are hundreds of apps built-in to Squarespace for adding added features and functionality to your online store. The basic plan starts at $12/month but you can upgrade to add commerce functionality or the ability to accept payments.
Even though you only perceive YouTube as a place to watch funny videos of laughing babies and make-up tutorials, YouTube has firmly established itself as a social media website.
Most Social Media Platforms have a few things in common. YouTube shares many elements of a Social Media Platform while also being one of the largest search engines on the web, second only to Google itself.
Like other social media platforms, visitors and logged-in users subscribe to channels that interest them, leave a thumbs up or a thumbs down on the videos they have watched, and even leave comments and share those videos. Content recommendations are based on user behavior and the social graph/connections, akin to how other social networks recommend friends and their content. YouTube even has a “newsfeed” or a “wall”, which displays videos from the channels a user has subscribed to, as well as recommendations on similar content. Visitors can build profiles like on other social media networks, upload/change their display picture, and follow, or subscribe in YouTube-speak, their friends. Not to mention, Ninety-five percent of all views come from user-generated content, and not the official videos. This means that a majority of the time you are watching a clip from a movie or a TV show, it was probably uploaded by a fan and not the official channel. However, YouTube’s proprietary tracking algorithm still makes sure that the copyright owner gets paid. Similarly, 95% of all views of brand-related content come from consumer uploads, not official brand videos.
YouTube has an army of content creators and some of them are even creating active, engaged communities of their own, bringing disparate people from all over the world under one umbrella. One of my favorite YouTubers, has built a community of people who play video games together, build game mods specifically for the type of gameplay their community enjoys playing, fund their own community-run servers, and have even started building new, original video games with development teams from within the community.
When comparing YouTube to other social media platforms, YouTube influences purchase behavior and decisions among more than 53% of all consumers, while 55 percent of respondents engaged with brands on Facebook, only 21 percent do so on Twitter, and 10 percent have done so on Pinterest.
Seeing the proliferation of video content in the past couple of years, it comes as no surprise that video has become the most preferred content format. The best thing about video content is that it is highly shareable on other social media platforms and accounts for almost 74% of all online traffic. Since Search engines have also started displaying video suggestions in search engine results, when you share a video on YouTube with SEO-optimized descriptions, titles, and tags, it can help you improve your search engine rankings. This means that YouTube SEO can really give you more bang for your marketing bucks. People frequently visit YouTube when they want to learn something new or when they wish to be entertained. In addition to cute animal and baby videos circulating the web and super Bowl YouTube videos being passed around on our social media platforms weeks before the actual event, we also see a lot of space for brand advertising. Boasting over a billion users, YouTube is an ideal platform to boost brand awareness, make your brand visible to a wider audience, and build an army of loyal customers. In all this, YouTube SEO plays a pivotal role in marketing; for instance, brands can leverage paid YouTube advertising to drive traffic towards YouTube channels.
People respond well to visual cues, and video is a perfect method for capturing the emotion and physical attributes of what you’re promoting. If you are looking to grab your customers’ attention and keep them hooked, YouTube is hands-down the most robust social media platform. In addition to offering affordability, measurability, customization, and targeting, YouTube advertising also enhances your outreach. YouTube’s 2 billion users visit the platform every month, not to mention another couple billion unregistered users who contribute towards the daily view of five billion videos. Look at each video as a marketing real estate, which can expose your business message and ad to the interested audience. With YouTube’s intelligent marketing tools, you can target videos based on the appropriate categories, topics, and keywords, and increase the chance of the right audience coming across your ad. Also, placement targeting helps you identify YouTube pages you want your ads to appear on. All these advanced features make sure you reach out to the right audience and help you get the word out about your business the right way. YouTube also offers enhanced customization features, which let businesses personalize their ads based on their target audience.
YouTube plays a pivotal role in building up a community on the social media platform. YouTube creators, are not just a part of a video streaming platform, but are much, much more in the greater scheme of things. YouTube takes care of its creators, allows them to hang out with other creators, and fosters a sense of community. YouTube is nothing without its millions of creators who work hand in hand as a team to do great things and share the workload of the platform. Billions of users watch videos of different creators, follow them religiously, learn different things from them, heed their advice, buy their products, etc.
Facebook may be the ultimate face of “social media”, but it can never have the creative firepower of YouTube. Firstly, because it doesn’t pay its influencers for the content they create, and secondly, it does not yet have a standalone product for users to create on. You can look at Facebook as an amalgamation of mountains over mountains of content-driven from third parties across the web. On the other hand, YouTube is a blessing in disguise for those creative minds and aspiring filmmakers who never had the chance to make it big. Not everybody is born with a silver spoon in their mouths and not everyone has connections. For those people, platforms like YouTube give them a chance to show their work to the world.
Similarly, Instagram is full of aspiring photographers who have amazing photography skills but cannot splurge an arm and a leg in equipment. Medium is home to writers who could have published their own books but got into the blogosphere too late to be competitive. This shows how a lot of social media platforms have been designed to let underrepresented talent shine, and give them their well-earned moment in the limelight. Platforms like YouTube make sure to put their users first beyond anything else; what follows next is creativity.
In foresight, it is a really wise move to mobilize this talent: creative minds keep users hooked on platforms. Without these self-proclaimed content creators, social media channels would lack the appeal for brands to invest their dollars into, and no user would want to while away hours on those platforms. Perhaps the biggest asset of YouTube is its creativity and artists, and the platform does make sure to reach out and invest in them.
Last but not the least, another thing we love about YouTube is that it gives its creators gamification and recognition for their efforts. Creators get rewards for completing milestones. For instance, you get a silver play button when you reach 100,000 subscribers, a gold button for hitting a whopping 1 million, and a diamond button for gaining 10 million subscribers. For users and creators, continually using a platform should be fun, but rewarding their hard work and effort boosts usage and brand loyalty. Reddit does a spectacular job at this via their karma reward system.
Coca-Cola has shown us time and again that the key to successful social media marketing is to advertise a particular state of mind, feeling, or emotion, rather than just a product. Sure, your production deserves a moment in the limelight somewhere along the line, but the important thing is to make people feel a certain type of way. Coca-Cola has always emphasized how their products can bring consumers happiness, peace, love, and a number of positive feelings. Coca-Cola’s motto is to build a successful global brand: make human connections, remain innovative, while staying true to simple principles. Let’s deep dive into Coca Cola’s social media strategy and try to decipher the secret sauce of the brand.
Coca-Cola’s social media campaign #VerdaderoAmigo, where they redesigned the logo’s iconic wavy ribbon into the “fist bump sign”, celebrates happiness, teamwork, unity, and true friendship. The extensive campaign pits friendship and kindness against the isolation, loneliness, and cruelty inflicted by its opposite: cyberbullying. Coca-Cola’s previous bid to spread good vibes online felt like a far cry from the severe social difficulties teens have to face these days. However, this social media campaign shows the power of true friendship and loyalty in combatting the cruelty that is prevalent in this world. The campaign features three web films focused on the negative repercussions of social cruelty and how cyberbullying fuels secrets and gossip-mongering. The campaign suggests that empathy, bonds of friendship, and shared moments offer a sense of identity and belonging in these situations. The insight is that a true friend is the most valuable commodity at a time when cruelty is everywhere.
Coca-Cola continues to launch innovative social media marketing campaigns with positive viewpoints in order to directly engage with fans. Teens who are facing, or have ever faced, cruelty, feelings of loneliness, and isolation due to cyberbullying, are empowered to retell stories and real-life moments where kind acts of friendship paved a path to happiness. In essence, Coca-Cola’s social media campaign opened doors for teens to connect with friends through refreshing and unique experiences. Through this campaign, coco-cola hoped to inspire conversation among teens and highlight how we can choose not to be cruel to another human being and step up for a friend in need.
As opposed to Pepsi’s celebrity-led approach, Coca-Cola relies more on content and experiences to push its brand forward. Coca-Cola always enables its consumers to produce original user-generated content.
When Coke launched #RefreshtheFeed in November 2018, it gave its social media accounts a complete overhaul. The revamp was dubbed as a social media strategy rooted in “uplift, optimism, and connection,” and was initially launched to celebrate World Kindness Day. Coca-Cola went dark on all its accounts on the 12th of November, only to re-emerge the next day in celebration of World Kindness Day 2018. The brand made quite a mark by sharing nearly 100 original images sent over by popular street artists the world over, filling the world’s feeds with happiness and uplift. At a time when the internet was a dismal, pessimistic place, Coca-Cola began spreading the messages we all needed to see and hear. As a result, Coca-Cola practically owned #WorldKindnessDay, garnering more than 69 million impressions in one day, sparking unparalleled positive conversation about the brand, leading to 1.4 million engagements.
Following its magnificent success in 2018, Coca-Cola ran a similar social media campaign for World Kindness Day the next year. As part of the campaign #KindnessStartsWith, the brand partnered with hundreds of artists on Instagram to create original Coke-inspired images, all exuding empathy, optimism, and kindness. As most of the artists were tagged, once again the campaign conveyed a feeling of community and reflected the brand’s ultimate purpose of prioritizing optimism, uplift, and connection on social.
Another similar campaign, #shareacoke, focused on ordinary consumers rather than artists. As part of the campaign, the brand replaced the logo on the bottles of its Coke products with popular names. Ever since the campaign went global, the most popular names of people living in each region are emblazoned on cans and bottles. The company encouraged consumers to find them for themselves in-store, with the aim of them sharing their own personalized Coke bottle on social media. The campaign was a massive success, reporting an estimated 330 million impressions on Twitter, with nearly 170,000 tweets from 160,000 fans.
Part of what makes Coca-Cola’s social media strategy so successful is its emphasis on the brand over the product. According to the brand, they sell happiness in a bottle. With a wide array of products and packaging designs that are localized according to the local culture and preferences, it would have been a nightmare to center their global marketing on the products themselves. Instead of selling a drink in a bottle, Coke sells the experience and lifestyle associated with its brand. For instance, Coke launched a packaging campaign where they individualized 2 million bottle designs. The aim was to convey to ‘Diet Coke lovers that they were extraordinary by creating unique one-of-a-kind extraordinary bottles. Though the brand has gone way beyond selling Coke, the experiences they are selling — happiness, friendship — are universally shared all over the globe.
Did you know that fans can Tweet with the hashtag #CokeMyName to have their name & a unique fact about it star on a billboard in Times Square. Coca-Cola’s recent outdoor campaign takes out-of-home advertising to a whole different level by allowing fans to have their name splashed on a big screen, in Times Square. After the mammoth success of Coke’s Share a Coke campaign featuring fan names emblazoned on Coke bottles, the new billboard shows fun facts about the names of people who tweet with the hashtag #CokeMyName. Coke worked in collaboration with Google to pull in facts about at least a thousand names the brand printed on its bottles. As soon as someone tweets with the hashtag, their name gets displayed on the big screen. The best part is that a webcam across the street snaps a picture of your name as soon as it gets displayed on the huge billboard and sends it to you within an hour so that you can enjoy seeing your name in the limelight without actually being physically present.
Can you reminisce the amazing feeling of drinking Coke on a hot summer’s day? Coca-Cola recently launched an ad that stars a pink giant digital tongue to evoke the beverage’s distinctive taste. The ad shows a woman transported down the memory lane, fondly reminiscing enjoying it on the beach, at the movies, on a ski slope and more, with the title song “La La La” playing in the background. The brand has an uncanny ability to evoke positive emotions and feelings associated with special memories.
Coca-Cola has an uncanny ability to evoke positive emotions associated with special memories, and they aspire to do just that with this nostalgic campaign. The ad celebrates the bliss of the Coca-Cola taste through the memories associated with taking that first sip of an ice-cold Coca-Cola on a sultry, summer’s day. Through these ads, the brand has portrayed Coca-Cola as not just a scrumptious and refreshing drink, but that it also has the ability to make you take a trip down memory lane.
In 2016, Coca Cola rolled out the integrated ‘Taste the Feeling’ campaign, which included a wide mix of media, including TV commercials, digital, print, OOH adverts, and shopper initiatives. The social media campaign aimed to offer intimate glimpses into universal stories and everyday moments and feelings that surround taking a sip of Coca Cola. The campaign brings to life the notion that drinking a Coca‑Cola somehow makes everyday moments more special. With the use of universal storytelling and compelling visuals, the campaign captured authentic, unscripted moments in a contemporary way. The images celebrated diversity by portraying people from around the world enjoying “their” Coca‑Cola in simple, everyday moments.
Still banking on nostalgia and experiential marketing, the brand celebrated the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio by launching the #ThatsGold campaign, which was designed to celebrate the feeling that comes with fulfilling your goals and realizing your dreams. Coca-Cola had a dedicated space inside the Olympic Park in Rio, where people could have their photos taken with Coca-Cola memorabilia and merchandise, resulting in a stream of really cool user-generated content for the brand’s social media presence.
Even if you have an amazing app, getting your target audience to download your app in the first place is difficult enough, but ensuring engagement and increasing mobile app revenue is the actual challenge that you have to worry about. Unfortunately, 25% of people only use an app once and then stop using it. If you are struggling to generate revenue from your app, here are a few monetization strategies to help you compete in a competitive market and get your customers to spend more on your app.
Deep linking is all about making sure your users move beyond the home screen and explore your app farther. You can think of deep learning in terms of the URLs of sub-web pages on a website. For instance, if you have ever received a curated list of shows from Netflix in your inbox, you must know that clicking on any of the web series from the list redirects you to that particular TV series/movie. If you want to offer a discount to a user on their abandoned cart, you would do better to send them a notification, which takes the users directly to the payment page where the discount code has already been applied to the total card value, rather than send them the coupon code and expect them to go back to the app, open their cart and then apply the coupon themselves! Deep learning boosts your mobile app revenue by driving more conversions through re-targeting. You can also enhance customer experience with a more tailored onboarding process, as well as enhance app usage and user engagement though deep linking.
Dakota smith of Hopper sets quite a score by push notifications. She attributes her app’s success to their use of push notifications to convert their users into paying customers. They send an average of 20 million push notifications to their users and most of their flights are sold in response to a push notification. Considering that the opening rate of push notifications is around 90%, we can garner an idea about the power of push notifications in boosting our app revenue and driving better conversions. Since these notifications sent via a mobile app, they boast a higher retention, opening, and clicking rate. However, simply sending a burst of push notifications won’t cut the bill; you have to be strategic about it. Even seemingly small things such as frequency, timing, and copy can have a huge impact on the success of push notifications.
Push notifications can be used to provide value like content updates, urgent news, flash sales, and exclusive discounts, or leverage geo-fencing technology to send notifications to customers in a particular area. For instance, a local bar can send push notifications about happy hours to users in the vicinity, or businesses can announce a flash sale to customers located in the area of business. Not to mention, push notifications are also great for reminding customers of abandoned carts and perhaps offer an incentive to spur them to complete the purchase.
In-app advertising is becoming a popular monetization strategy for developers. This model offers a way to feature ads on your apps, which redirect the users towards the advertiser’s platform. Rewarded videos are the most prevalent ad formats, where gamification is used to enhance the experience of ads and users are rewarded for their time. For instance, a game might reward users with an extra life or game coins in exchange for watching a video. In fact, when it comes to in-game advertising, rewarded video ads are the hottest revenue generators. In fact, most people are content with watching a 30-second video if they are being offered a discount, game points, or a free download. The best part about these ads are that they are opt-in, meaning that while users are incentivized to watch these videos, they can choose to avoid them altogether if they are not interested in the rewards on the table.
Playable ads are also really popular with advertisers at the moment, especially when marketing a video game. What better way to show off the many features of a game than to let users experience gameplay. With the playable ad format, users can play a portion of a mobile game without actually installing it. Native advertising is also a great way to generate revenue from advertisers without ruining the experience of your users. These unobtrusive ads are meant to replicate the design and functionality of your app in order to create a more satisfying experience for your app users while still fulfilling the purpose.
In fact, experts predict that the emergence of 5G will really give mobile in-app ads a significant boost in terms of interactive technologies and high-definition media to amp up the user experience. This would allow advertisers to maximize the performance and quality of their apps and provide an exceptional user experience in turn.
Our purchase decisions are more driven by the opinions and experiences of others than the flashiest advertisements; be it purchasing a house or downloading an application. If an app has received a 5-star rating, and if many people have deemed it worth installing and amazing, other users will install it in a heartbeat. This is why word of mouth marketing can mean the world for your app. Recommendation from others is a sure-fire way for people to install your app, so make sure you spread the word about your app by telling people more and more about it, and making sure they tell others about it too. Ross Andrew Paquette of Maropost has used this strategy to boost revenue and app recognition. According to his interview for Forbes, “When looking at our growth in revenue, word-of-mouth is the greatest marketing tool we’ve managed to harness at Maropost. With our number one priority being customer service, the good word spreads faster.”
Did you know that having a business app is way more beneficial than simply having a brick and mortar store for the same purpose? Here’s what happens; a customer walks into your brick and mortar store, browses around, and shows interests in a few items, but leaves without making a purchase. You won’t be able to able to stop them from stepping out of your store; once they are gone, they are gone. But, with your app, you will be able to see the customer browser history, and try to analyze and monitor customer behavior unobtrusively. You will be able to offer a more tailored customer experience for attracting the customer back, as well as to boost revenue from your app.
In fact, businesses that capitalize on customer behavior data to generate behavioral insights perform better than their competitors when it comes to sales growth and gross margin. Just look at Amazon and Netflix; both of these organizations leverage customer behavior data and analytics to build a more customized user interaction. Netflix offers recommendations to users based on their past watching history and generates 75% of its activity by recommendations alone. Tracking the behavior of your customers via your app lets you offer a tailored app experience, which in turn helps you increase revenue from your mobile app.
A lot of apps offer a freemium service, where users can enjoy an app for free with either limited functionality or with ads. Users are often not willing to spend money on an app they have never tried before, but once they have developed a taste for your app through the fermium service, they will be more willing to commit to a subscription. It’s easier to retain existing users than acquire new users from scratch. Even if some users never subscribe to your premium service, you will still be able to monetize them with in-app ads. Most users commit to a subscription model to get rid of ads or to get their hands-on premium features of an app. If you have ever used spotify, you must know that anybody can use the free Spotify app but with constant interruptions from ads. However, if you pay for a premium ad-free service, you can listen to music in peace. In fact, Spotify even gives you a one month trial of the premium service, so that you get a taste of the superior offerings.
I know that you think you are already using push notifications to share important news and updates with your users, but in truth, you need to build an email list if you are looking to develop long-term relationships with your customers. People may stop using your app if they no longer need it, but chances are, they won’t change their email addresses. Email marketing has a higher chance of getting your content across to users and making sure they engage with it. With regular newsletter, you can keep your app at the top of your customer’s mind, so that they don’t forget your brand anytime soon. You can ask for email addresses by offering an incentive to prompt your users into giving their information. It could be a free download, a discount, or just a chance to enter into a lucky draw. Including an email subscription form to your app not only helps you build an email list but also drive traffic to your websites. Benjamin Guez’s app Washos, attributes its revenue boost to email marketing. “Email is the best medium for Washos in terms of communication leading to conversion.”