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The latest ways you can leverage digital marketing

It wasn’t so long ago that marketing for most Australian businesses meant securing a spot in the phone book and a fraction of a column in the local newspaper.
Those with a healthy budget might have had a radio commercial and for the lucky few doing really well, even an ad on TV.
Today, successful marketing isn’t driven so much by the advertising dollar as it is by audience appeal, the right timing, solid strategy and sometimes, just a bit of good old fashioned luck.
Long gone are the days of weighing up the ROI of a ? vs ¼ page printed newspaper ad. When it comes to digital marketing, there is no simple one-size-fits-all solution.
It’s an all-encompassing blanket term for the new era of marketing, extending beyond merely advertising products and services, to focus on connecting and engaging with potential customers.
What that involves, and how to get it right, is unique to each and every industry. And the perfect mix differs for every company too.
Digital Marketing in Media
In fact, it’s the newspapers and media outlets we once relied so heavily upon for advertising, that have had one of the most radical and successful takeups of digital marketing we have seen in Australia to date.
Only it wasn’t so much a tactical decision as it was a necessary response to changing consumer trends.
Print newspaper circulation has been in decline across Australia for the past 10 years as more readers choose to go online for their news fix. The 2018 Reuters Institute Digital News Report reveals the number of Australians reading print newspapers each week has fallen 10% in the 12 months to November 2017, with 82% of Australians now using online news sources and 52% relying purely on social media to read the headlines.
It is here we have seen major growth in the media’s digital presence, with both national and local newspapers, magazines, radio and television news programs all using social media to publish, and now even live stream the news as it happens. This shift has not only changed the way the news is reported and received, inviting feedback and commentary from readers and viewers like never before, but has also paved the way for a new generation of exclusively digital news platforms such as the highly successful BuzzFeed and Pedestrian.TV.
Not surprisingly, advertising revenue from traditional media is in rapid decline, with newspapers dropping from 27% to just 14% of total ad spend since 2009. Meanwhile internet advertising has risen from 17% to 35% in the same period and is expected to account for at least 50% of total ad spend by 2019.
Despite the uptake of digital news, customers simply aren’t paying to get the news anymore. Most Australian newspaper websites feature a paywall and offer exclusive member-only content, but the Digital News Report shows only 10% of Australians are paying for online news content and most of those who haven’t paid for it, said it was ‘very unlikely’ they ever would.
This continues to be an ongoing battle for the media industry as it writes its new digital chapter.
Fashion, Food and Facebook
Small businesses were among the last to embrace the online marketplace. The potential for a customer base outside their immediate postcode was inconceivable, even laughable, for many.
But that soon changed.
Facebook in particular made an online presence affordable and feasible for businesses that had never even considered ‘going online’.
Now it’s the norm for your local corner store to be on Facebook, have a mailing list and even an online shop. Embracing these digital marketing platforms is what has transformed some small businesses into very big success stories, particularly those in the fields of fashion and food.
Women’s fashion store St Frock is just one stunning example, born from humble beginnings in 2005 as a weekend stall at the Bondi Beach Markets.
For four years, it was simply a relaxing escape from a high pressure job in PR and marketing for founder and fashion enthusiast Sandradee Makejev.
But in October 2009, Sydney was hit by a dust storm. That and predictions of increased rain had Sandradee thinking of other more weather-proof ways to sell her garments. Tired and weary from a hellish day at the markets, Sandradee set up a Facebook page, uploaded a few fuzzy photos, invited some close friends to check it out, and went to bed.
She woke to find she’d made $350 while she was sleeping. Within three months Sandradee had 1600 followers and enough income to quit her job, instead spending her weekdays packing orders on her bedroom floor. Within ten months, she was turning over $480,000 every four weeks.
Today St Frock, the former hobby market stall, is an international online fashion boutique with a bustling team of 35 staff, a 500-square metre warehouse in Ultimo and close to 500,000 followers on Facebook from all over the globe.

Corporates, Commercial & Professional Services
If a market stall can find fame on Facebook, anyone can right? That’s the false impression too many businesses have about digital marketing. It’s not a sure thing, it isn’t easy (well not often anyway) and there are no guarantees.
What works brilliantly for one business, won’t work at all for the next. And knowing which digital marketing platforms to employ, and when, requires careful consideration and skill.
Ultimately it’s about delivering what your audience wants, preferably before they even ask for it. This has seen many corporates, commercial ventures and professional services alike offer practical digital tools like client portals, apps and live chat services, as well as audience capture and engagement methods like blogs and content marketing, EDM and e-newsletters, and audio or video presentations now commonly distributed through social media and live streams.
It is within this sector we tend to see the greatest variations of success using digital marketing. There is a sense that many are still testing the waters with a hit and miss approach to finding what works for them and their target audience. But it’s important to remember every adventure on those ‘waters’ is embarking on unpredictable and unchartered territory.
This promo video of a government agency grad program is a prime example. The so-bad-it’s-good video has been viewed over 200,000 times since capturing the attention of the internet recently, with viewers shocked at how three minutes of corny scripting and forced acting could cost $40,000 to make. But, with the digital world being the unpredictable and ironic beast that it is, the value of the media exposure the clip has received means it has already more than paid for itself.
Image Sources:

Digital News Report 2018
Pixabay
Wikimedia

The Latest Social Media Fails

There’s one big flaw that all brands have that no one likes to talk about: they’re run by fallible, emotional and sometimes careless human beings.
Every once in a great while, these humans make mistakes—they slip up all too publicly on their brands’ social media properties.
When this happens, most us watch the disaster unfold with bewilderment at the stark stupidity of it all. While these mistakes often create backlash for brands, and sometimes a bit of recovery work, they’re not necessarily the end of the world. Having said that, it may be the end of the career line for the people who caused the problem/s in the first place.
In the interest of learning from the mistakes of others, following are some of the worst social media fails of the last 12 months:
Total Beauty: Confusing Oprah Winfrey and Whoopi Goldberg
Total Beauty made a pretty serious social media faux pas when they confused two hugely popular African American female celebrities; Oprah Winfrey and Whoopi Goldberg.
Both are not people whose bad side you want to be on, and the brand may have done so when they praised Oprah Winfrey for having tattoos while it was in fact Whoopi Goldberg in the picture.
To make matters worse, the tweet was released during the Oscars, meaning that Total Beauty not only received the attention of the fans of both women, but of all the viewers tweeting about the Oscars that night.
To their credit, they reacted quickly, taking down the photo as soon as they could and apologised for the misstep.
 
ALDI: Inciting Negative Responses
ALDI Australia didn’t offend other people, but they did accidentally incite others to upload questionable content on their Twitter page. The popular discount retail outlet wanted to run a campaign that would prompt their customers to post positive memories about shopping at Aldi.
After the ‘Fill in the blank’ tweet went live, Aldi received many distasteful responses, with people filling in the blank with offensive imagery like diarrhoea, poison, and many other less pleasant responses.
Fortunately, Aldi quickly stopped the campaign.
Key learning: consider all possible outcomes – negative and positive – when palnning you next social media campaign. Remember, consumers are not constrained by policy, guidelines and corporate imperatives like you are.
Coca-Cola: Released the Wrong Russian Map
The biggest social media rule is the one that always seems to be broken the most: do your research.
In this case, Coca-Cola incited a #BanCocaCola hashtag after they published an ad with the wrong map of Russia.
When you take a closer look, the map is outdated. It doesn’t include Kaliningrad, which was annexed after World World II. Russian patriots were not happy with the ad, and began posting pictures of themselves pouring Coca-Cola into toilets. Ouch.
Seoul Secret: White Skin Helps You Win
There are times when you just scratch your head and wonder what a brand’s marketing/social media department was thinking. This is one of those times.
Beauty brand, Seoul Secret ran an incredibly inappropriate campaign, that basically implied that one of their models was more successful because she has white skin.
To make matters worse, the campaign was called “White Makes you Win”. What was it promoting? Skin lightening cosmetics.
Seoul Secret tweeted about their campaign and included a video of Thai actress and singer Cris Horwang.
In the video, she spoke about her career and made direct comments about her white skin and why it has made her more successful than others.
Seriously.
Most brands fear social media mistakes like the ‘Wrong Russia’ one made by Coca-Cola. Taking it to a whole new – and worse – level is running a blatantly racially offensive campaign. Imagine having to clean up that marketing mess.
There is Life After a Social Media Fail.
While these social media fails were clearly a headache for these brands, you shouldn’t panic if you should stumble into/create a social media firestorm.
The best way to recover from a social media campaign that has gone wrong is to act quickly, apologise (invariably) and show that you’re genuinely trying to fix the mess. A good social media strategy is all about planning and balancing sensitivity with common sense.
If having a successful social media program is something you’re worried about, speak with a social media expert about how to do it right; and what to do when things go wrong.
Tick Yes is a digital and social media marketing agency based in Sydney that uses proven social media strategies to help clients improve their brand. For more information on how we can help manage your social media strategy, contact us.

Digital Marketing Lessons To Be Learnt From Donald Trump

Donald Trump teaching you marketing lessons? Seriously? Yes, seriously.
Love him or hate him, Donald Trump has made the race for the White House fascinating. And fascinating doesn’t happen by chance.
Exceptional marketing combined with good old fashioned, in-your-face salesmanship are central to the success of his campaign – so far.
So putting aside your opinion on his politics, let’s look at what can be learned from Trump’s ‘Making America Great Again’ campaign.

Know Your Audience
Contrary to the opinion of many, Trump is no fool and knows his audience incredibly well. He has identified the pain and passion points of his supporters and has moulded his campaign accordingly.
As a digital marketer, this should be the first thing you do when devising a strategy. You need to know who you’re targeting, how to address their needs with valuable content and then get them to take action.
Yes, it sounds obvious but it’s astounding how many digital campaigns don’t have any compelling customer reasons for being.

Engage Your Audience at Every Touchpoint
Trump is particularly well-known for his power to motivate, outrage, and entertain his audience on Twitter but it’s not the only platform that his campaign uses.
Today’s campaigners are connected through multiple digital channels and are faced with an array of methods to reach out to their voters. This brings opportunity and challenges in equal measure. Get your content’s message, tone, and platform right, and you’ll win loyal supporters. Get it wrong, and your audience clicks over to the next hot thing.
Engaging with your audience through relevant social media platforms is important. While Facebook will always take a leading role, this year’s election campaign has seen candidates reaching beyond the social giant to more niche platforms like Instagram and Snapchat.

Zig when Everyone Else Zags
From suggesting he paid Hillary to attend his wedding to the claim that Ted Cruz’s father was involved with JFK’s assassination, Trump marches to his own beat.
He does the opposite of what other politicians have been taught to do, but clearly it’s working.
Hillary Clinton says that all is wonderful with the USA; Trump says the complete opposite. By graphically highlighting the country’s problems real or supposed he offers the ultimate solution: him. America will only be great again if you vote for Trump.
The takeaway here is to take chances. Do something different. When everyone is focusing on eBooks and blogs, create a podcast or set up a Periscope account. When everyone goes horizontal, go vertical.

Want to Stay in the Game? Don’t Be Boring!
How many times have you listened to Hillary Clinton, Jeb Bush or Ted Cruz? Do you remember a single thing they said or tweeted? I can’t either.
So how about The Donald?
Like most of us, I can easily rattle off any number of quotes, tweets and incidents from his campaign. Many of Trump’s tweets have taken on a life of their own, garnering enormous global coverage.
What does this tell you about his marketing?
Right from the outset, Trump has been outrageous, disrespectful, rude, controversial and, without fail, utterly compelling.
While his opponents were trying to cut through by spending many millions of dollars on advertising, Trump’s messages and style have earned him more free publicity and media time than all of his erstwhile Republican opponents: combined.
In the marketing world, Trump’s content stands head and shoulders above his competitors and makes people take notice. As a marketer, if you market the same old boring content everyone else is putting out there, no one’s going to see it or care.
From a content marketing perspective, be like Donald, not Jeb.

Build Rapport with Everyone, Even the Haters
This is a risky way to approach a digital marketing campaign but if your brand is ready to take a little heat, you can even get value from your haters.
Of course, while most of us don’t want to “feed the trolls,” Trump has a knack for beating his detractors
to the punch. When Ted Cruz didn’t endorse Trump on day three of the RNC, Trump was quick to tweet about it and turned a negative into a positive. Brave and smart.

Manage Your Brand or Domain
You may have heard about Trump redirecting Jeb Bush’s website to his own. Due to poor brand management, Bush’s team forgot to renew payment for their domain which meant that the address became available to anyone else. Trump’s team grabbed the opportunity and automatically redirected all visitors to his website.
Lesson: don’t be a digital dill. Make sure your domain payments are up-to-date or outsource management to someone who knows what the hell they’re doing!

Lessons Learnt
Trump understands just how dramatically digital communication has changed the way we engage and has invested in his online presence. He has more than 23 million social media followers / likes, dramatically more than any his competitors for the Republican nomination. And 50% more than Hillary Clinton.
Like any successful digital marketer, Trump maintains an active presence and regularly tweets, posts and interacts with both friends and foes alike. He also stays abreast of the latest digital trends (he announced his intention to run on Periscope).
Offensive, buffoonish or smart? Whatever you feel about the man, there’s no denying his masterful use of digital marketing. There a thing or two we can learn from The Donald; or at least from his campaign.

Images:
a) Getty Images, Tom Pennington
b) Twitter
c) CNN Money

How to avoid digital dead ends

Have you ever noticed that so-called ‘express lanes’ on the road or in stores are often slower than the normal lanes?
While I know it’s easy to go on auto-pilot when performing mundane chores like driving or shopping, it amazes me that people so often follow the actual signs instead of reading the signs around them.
Because we humans are inherently disengaged, conflicted or uncertain as to what we should do in many situations, we’re attracted to people and things that can give us clarity, focus and direction. This is particularly the case when we don’t know a great deal about the subject at hand.
Charismatic leaders understand this. The more effective they are at providing a clear and compelling way forward, the more followers they attract. Not that their chosen path is always a good or rewarding one as history has shown on many occasions.
Digital marketing, as a discipline is failing miserably in giving marketers a clear way forward. Or perhaps it’s the other way around.
It’s not for want of trying, however. You could spend all your time consuming books, courses, podcasts, webinars, articles and conferences on digital this, mobile that, programmatic whatever. It’s information overload, the sworn enemy of clarity and focus.
What ends up happening is that huge dollops of dollars are being spent on doing digital stuff with no clear idea as to why it’s being done.
I was in a brainstorming session a few years ago with our client and their creative, media and PR agencies. The solutions that were put forward to increase awareness and drive sales of the client’s brand were all based on just doing digital stuff. Let’s sponsor Shazam, let’s run targeted Facebook ads, let’s do cool banner ads, let’s do pre-roll YouTube ads etc. Lots and lots of stuff.
My suggestion about first creating a strategy, engaging with consumers via email and phone to better understand their interests and needs and THEN rolling-out select digital stuff was met with a deafening silence. I was obviously a buzz-kill.
It’s no wonder clients end up going down expensive digital dead ends when they consistently receive advice that amount to just doing lots of stuff. The people giving the advice often know just enough jargon to confuse the people (clients) receiving it.
This doesn’t have to be you.
Here are the four key questions you need to answer when planning and implementing your digital program IF you want it to deliver actual results beyond views, likes, clicks and opens:

What do you want?
OK, it seems like I’m trying to teach you, an experienced and savvy businessperson how to suck eggs. Sorry. But for this rant to actually resonate with you in the context of all the hot air you may have been fed, I need to boil it down to the basics.
Is your market aging and you need a younger demographic? Are your competitors doing a better job than you of building awareness / relevance in the market? Do your customers buy on price and not much else?
These are the types of grunty sales and marketing problems that you need solutions for. They’re exactly the problems you can and should be looking to digital marketing to help you solve.
Marketing strategies and digital marketing strategies are not mutually exclusive. They must be intertwined. You must know what you want to achieve commercially before a coder’s keyboard is struck in anger.
If your digital partner doesn’t get what you’re looking to achieve outside of what can be done on a computer, mobile phone or a tablet, get a new partner.
What do your customers want?
I know, it’s obvious, but why do so many digital programs seem self rather than customer serving? One of the exciting aspects of web marketing is that it’s relatively easy to find the customers you’re looking to influence. So there’s no real excuse to be inward or focus group oriented with your digital programs.
The internet is the ultimate home of people seeking answers, solutions and to have most of their needs met. As with all types of marketing, the better we meet those needs the more successful we will be.
Often, the main solution web browsers are looking for is to make a connection with others who are ‘just like me’. We’ve achieved phenomenal results by simply asking customers to – confidentially – tell us their story as it relates to the product / service we’re marketing. Usually for no incentive other than the satisfaction of being heard.
Billions of dollars of value are being wiped off bottom lines in many industries because of many companies’ failure truly understand what their customers want. The default reaction: cut the price.
Do online surveys using third party lists if you don’t have your own; send an email to your customers asking for their opinions; put on a series of wine and cheese chats in your office; do targeted Google / Facebook ad campaigns driving prospects to a survey page. Heck, get on the phone and just talk to a bunch of random customers! Or do all of the above.
Your customers don’t care about your new website, app, eDM, social media page. Unless of course those platforms give them something that they want. If you use the access you have to your customers / prospects using various digital means, any or all of these may be appropriate. But you don’t really know if you don’t ask.

Think Long-Term
Unless you have a here today gone tomorrow offering, your digital vision needs to extend beyond the next six weeks or months. Try six years – for starters.
I get that marketers tend to be career butterflies but if you do your job effectively, your brand’s customers are not. We all are looking for long-term relationships: with our spouses, friends, work colleagues and of course, brands. Those types of relationships don’t happen after a 6 week burst. That’s a start, but the true value for everyone involved only becomes apparent over the years.
The same applies with your digital programs. Companies who view digital through the prism of the next quarter or year’s results are leaving money on the table.
By all means launch with a bang, get consumers engaged and excited but make sure you have a compelling answer for “now what?”. If senior management are looking for a ROI directly attributable to your investment in digital after only a few months in most cases, you may have a problem.
I’ve seen many cases of clever short-term digital campaigns with no follow-up strategy. This is old paradigm thinking: run my ad today and watch the sales fly tomorrow. The main advantage with digital vs. traditional advertising is that it’s much easier and more cost-effective to create assets – e.g. email / mobile databases / social media engagement.
And what can assets do? Provide a return over many years. Your 2016 digital budget should be directly returning money to your organisation in 2021 and beyond.
Stay the course

Don’t get bored with your digital campaign. Make adjustments by all means based on customer feedback but resist the urge to try something new when the old way could be working just fine.
Many marketers love shiny new things in the name of keeping up with changing consumer interests and needs. Which has some validity. The problems arise when you keep having to continually start from scratch, rather than build on what you did before.
Like relationships, if it’s the right one you hang in there through good and bad times. Customers don’t care when your budget starts and finishes; if you disappear for six months, one of your competitors has probably stolen your thunder – and customer.
Invariably, there are countless opportunities in your market for you to launch successful digital programs simply because most companies are not planning and acting in a structured way like this.

Use this formula to steer a course through the maze of digital options. Don’t just ask “what are we going to do?” WHY you’re going to do it is an infinitely more important question.
When you read and understand the signs that are all around you’ll be much more likely to get where you want to go. The alternative is far less appealing.
 
Images:
a)
b)
c)

When the Social Media Circus Leaves Town

David Bowie died almost two months ago. Soon after, we posted about the tawdry British reality TV show making money from his ex-wife’s reactions. Inevitably, her presence on the show at the time and her response to the news created a social media firestorm.
Focus, of course has moved on to the latest deaths, tragedies, political intrigues and sporting victories / defeats. But it’s worth pondering the enduring impact that not being news has on the people who were previously at the centre of the world’s attention. Or at least, the attention of those on Twitter, Instagram and other social media platforms.
Some crave re-gaining their anonymity. It’s hard to imagine what it would be like to be related to a global celebrity. There are countless examples of wives, children, parents and siblings of celebrities doing things that reflect negatively – funny isn’t it that it’s always the bad behaviour that grabs the headlines – on their famous relation. Others try to make money from their association

Others, it seems, miss the limelight and do whatever they can to re-capture the attention.
Social media reflects the best and worst of human nature and consequently can destroy as much as it can create. The most popular blog post we’ve ever written by a factor of two discusses ’How social media is helping to beat cyber-bullying‘. There have been far too many examples of social media attention driving people to despair – or worse.
So what’s the take out? Unless you have a clear plan and can stick to that plan, be very wary about exposing yourself too much in these very public forums. While it’s tempting to seek approval and show the world how amazingly fabulous your life is, the other side of the coin can show itself quickly and easily. Someone can post nasty or incriminating content about you and your whole carefully crafted image can come crumbling down. Footballer Mitchell Pearce has recently found that out to his great cost.
We’re quite active on social media but we’re also very selective about what we do and don’t post. In other words, we try to have a foot in both camps: active yet under the radar. When we launched a new business some years ago the media we generated brought several anonymous cowards out of the woodwork posting all manner of nasty comments about the business and me. Or so I was told. I still believe my reaction to our own social media maelstrom was perfect: I didn’t read any of it and never have.
In Greek mythology, Icarus ignored his father’s advice and flew too close to the sun and subsequently fell to earth when his feather and wax wings melted. We see the social media equivalent all the time.
Here’s the key point: you don’t need to be on social media. Or at least you don’t need to be constantly posting photos and videos of every coffee you drink, croughnut you eat or person you kiss. You are entitled to a life where every aspect of it is not pored over by others some of whom may have no good will toward you.
Like sugar, social media can be addictive as it gives you an immediate buzz. But like sugar, the longer-term consequences of living your life on social media can be harmful - or worse.
Images:

Hang Gliding

The Decline and Fall of Free-to-Air TV

Free-to-air (FTA) TV is gone, over, finished, obsolete, outta here. Everyone is on their mobile phones, tablets, PCs etc etc. NO-ONE watches TV anymore, right?
Wrong.
FTA, of course is not finished. It merely has had a bit of a turn and is having a lie down. It will be back bigger than ever, right?
Wrong.
Once the staple evening and weekend fare of every self-respecting baby boomer and Gen X’er, television is no longer our ’electronic hearth’. We have plenty of other glass that we can stare at now. And that glass allows US to be the creative director, programmer and consumer where, when, what and however we choose. It’s exciting, flexible and fun!
All of which leaves poor old FTA looking like a threadbare old coat gathering dust in the corner while the flashier Zegna suit alternatives sashay out the door.
Nothing new here. Technology is being regularly rendered obsolete. Depending on your age, this list provides a reminder of what was once vital and is now irrelevant (did someone say floppy disk?).
Sure, multi-year sports mega-deals with FTA networks still make news but now there’s this little thing called ‘digital rights’ that sporting franchise owners have carved off. Before you know it, those same sports will be running their own multi-media empires and they won’t need external TV stations anymore. Why? Because they can. They own what viewers want which is why broadcast rights are so valuable. That’s why ‘narrowcast’ rights are even more valuable. The more focused you are, the more valuable you become.
This could not be starker than in network television’s own ecosystem. According to Forbes, sports focused ESPN is worth $50 billion+ compared to the generalist ABC network’s $3.2 billion valuation.
And then there’s cable, Netflix and Apple TV and Amazon TV. All of which are vertically integrating by creating and controlling their own content through to its eventual distribution and
marketing. And we haven’t even mentioned YouTube.
In a complex, tangled and confusing electronic content dissemination world, FTA television seems firmly stuck where it was king of the heap: the 70’s. Of course, FTA still attracts enormous audiences but as with all declining technologies, while the trend is gradual it’s not looking good. What FTA TV will look like in 10 years time is anyone’s guess.
Mourn not though. Globally, television executives have at best paid lip service to the hyper-connectedness facilitated by digital communications. Throw up a few websites, syndicate our media releases on a Facebook page and enable SMS voting for our talent shows and we’re sorted. They’re so not sorted.
There are collectively hundreds of millions of viewers out there who have never had any personal interaction with the FTA TV channels they’ve slavishly supported for decades. Some could argue that they never needed to connect with viewers beyond offering them fabulous programs to watch. Which still works. To a degree. Trouble is, we’ve all been spoiled by what we can do and what we can control.
So while it’s unrealistic to think that regular emails and SMS’ to viewers will halt the declining trend, it can’t hurt.
But the clock is ticking, and it’s very loud.
 
The Message is brought to you by Tick Yes – providing solutions for all your digital and content marketing needs.
Images:

legarde-rob.com

Latest Social Media Stats for Marketing

We’ve looked at some of the most recent studies on social media topics and trends and picked out our most surprising and revealing ones that all businesses should be aware of. Let us know if you find any other good ones.

The Impact Digital Readiness can have on Your Career

For organisations, money solves lots of problems. Glittering office blocks, sumptuous ad campaigns and offices dotted around the world are testament to that.
But there’s one problem money doesn’t solve, and that’s lack of intent. Without the will or incentive to evolve, invariably very little changes. Even if it needs to.
Sure, there may be some tinkering around the edges but that’s about it. If you want to place a bet, back the status quo every time.
This is why the digital marketing preparedness of many organisations lags so badly.
It’s understandable in many ways. Successful businesses often take decades to build processes, service/product offerings and of course a customer base. Most of which was achieved before or without the internet.
The only complicating thing is that while you and your competitors may not have changed the rest of the world has.
Of course you know about the digital revolution; you’re part of it for goodness sake! You live on email, post and comment on Facebook regularly and you have a symbiotic relationship with your mobile phone. You have adopted and adapted.
Now it’s your company’s turn to have strategic digital connectedness as a fundamental part of its DNA.
Easier said than done; if it was easy everyone would be doing it. It’s possible though and the supporting evidence for doing so is overwhelming.
Your opportunity, perhaps the biggest one of your career, is to help to transition your organisation to one of digital readiness. To ensure that data is captured, organised and utilised to better serve and sell to your customers. To ensure that every marketing campaign has digital interactivity as a central component and that it integrates with all other promotional elements. To ensure that senior management understands why digital is so important to the future of the organisation and is not something to ignore or pay lip service to on a PowerPoint slide.

Imagine looking back in five years’ time as the person who fundamentally changed your organisation by transitioning it to being digital ready and active. It would look pretty good on your CV, wouldn’t it?
Sure there are many people ‘doing’ digital within organisations but, through no fault of their own it’s usually being done as an add-on.
If you are ambitious, being at the forefront of the digital evolution is the place to be.
 
The Message is brought to you by Tick Yes – providing solutions for all your digital and content marketing needs.

Time to Get (Digitally) Active!

Australian small business owners, we need to talk.
About what you may ask? Well, it’s a little awkward but there’s something I really need to tell you.
You need to be active online.
Don’t be mad. I know you have a million things to do. I know you think this internet thing is all too hard. And you probably know lots of people like you that who also think this online marketing is a waste of time.
Which makes them and, hate to say it, you wrong, deluded, misguided and completely out of touch. And that’s being nice.
The most recent Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show that only 41.6% to 44.4% of SMEs have an online presence. That compares to 97% of large companies.
If you were smart – which you have to be to run a successful small business – you’d see this as an opportunity rather than a problem. On average, most of your competitors are missing out on building their brand, engaging with current and potential customers and positioning themselves as thought leaders.
And the good thing is that it doesn’t cost a fortune to get involved. In fact, with a little imagination and effort you can be online in no time.
So why am I going on about this? Your business has survived so far, what’s the rush? I always like to answer that by suggesting that you look at your own online behaviour. See how many of these sound ‘familiar’ to you: research restaurants, possible illnesses, movies, potential partners, latest celebrity news, check your bank balance, pay your bills and get a new employee.
Heck, it would be easier to list what we don’t do online than to list everything we do.
So isn’t it time to commission a new website, or to start regularly emailing your customers, or create a Facebook page? How about starting a blog and writing regular posts. And while you’re at it you’re only a few taps away on your smartphone from recording videos to post on YouTube. All of which will in all likelihood find itself to the internet’s big bopper.
Google is used by Australians 6 million times every day to search for goods, services and information. According to a Fleishman-Hillard study 89% of consumers search for information online before making a purchase. I’d wager that a fair few of your current or potential customers make up those numbers.
So I guess the final question is “WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR????”
Being active online is simple but it’s not easy. It takes consistent work, dedication and focus. But think of the competitive advantage! And hard work? Pffftt, you’re not scared of hard work, right! For your sake you have to be in it. Run to your nearest computer or smartphone and start!
Now.
 
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Images Courtesy: www.unziptheweb.com, www.digitalbusiness.gov.au

I Post Therefore I Am

I didn’t post on Facebook today. I didn’t upload a photo to Instagram or a video to YouTube. Today, I didn’t exist.
That’s what it seems like for those of us who ‘must’ regularly post, tweet, upload, like or comment. One of our 20 something client service staff had her mobile phone stolen and was without it for three weeks. It was purgatory for her – and for us. Being off the social grid is like being off life support.
In the old days people kept diaries. Every night they confided their deepest and most personal dreams, fears and aspirations to a book meant only for themselves. It was part confessional, part friend. There was never any judgement or comments from others. Your diary was sacrosanct; it was for you and no-one else.
How quaint. How boring.
Now if what we do and feel is not there for the world to see and judge, we’re somehow diminished. There’s only one thing that’s worse: if one of our posts gets no likes or comments.
It’s ridiculous isn’t it. Call it an addiction to social validation or to our mobile phones; either way, it has to have an impact on how we interact with the world.

Try walking down a busy street and see how often you’re almost bowled over by someone walking the other way engrossed in their mobile phone. As for the impact on car accidents, the numbers – according to a US National Safety Council study – are terrifying with 1 in 4 accidents caused by ‘cell phone distraction’.
Is there a solution? I can’t think of one. As technology permeates every corner of our lives and increases our slavish consumption of social media, our values are changing. We seem to care less about what we personally see, touch or smell and more about what we read, watch or listen to.
The sad twist in the tail is that so much of what is posted and consumed on social media is trivial beyond belief. Photos of daily cups of coffee, pets, inspirational quotes, selfies at the beach, child standing/walking/swimming etc. This is the content that’s so vital eye contact can’t be established or the road watched.
If this is a younger generational thing, what will the next generation cling to? Or given that everyone under 35 seems so obsessed with their digital world, perhaps there won’t be another generation.
 
The Message is brought to you by Tick Yes – providing solutions for all your digital and content marketing needs.
Image Courtesy: twoinklingsintheshire.blogspot.com.au, prezi.com, broku.ca