Digital Marketing Tips for 2014

Digital Marketing Tips for 2014

Afternoon all. I trust you all had a fantastic start to the year? I’m sure, being driven people, that your goals are set, you know what you want to achieve in 2014 and now its just a case of making it happen.

As the owner of a digital agency in Exeter I want to cover a few ideas for things you should look to implement within your digital strategy this year. If you take on board just a couple of these you’ll be ahead of the majority of the crowd. I know you guys are always looking for the edge, so please enjoy.

Explore the world of Conversion Optimisation (CRO/Split Testing)
Offering up different versions of the same page on your website in order to see which converts the most is an extremely valuable technique to master. Even if you don’t sell online (where huge returns on investment can be seen), you should split test any enquiry forms on your site. Get your agency to do this for you and work with them on the results.

Start practicing Inbound Marketing
Another big trend for the year will see the tracking of customers through your websites, taking a look at what they are downloading, where they spend time and mashing that all up with their social profiles and historic browsing history so you can personalise their journey. Check out industry leaders like Hubspot and Pardot.

Ramp up your Content Marketing..but make it worthwhile
Content marketing is still an important part of your digital strategy and should fuel your Inbound Marketing funnel but it needs to be good. Theres too much content in this world so make sure what you create is better than everyone else in your market. Aim for things that are shareable through social media. Video, best practice guides and content which anticipates and answers your prospects questions should all feature highly.

Setup Email Autoresponders
Its a simple, yet quick win. By linking your website up to a decent email marketing system (MailChimp, OptixMail, Constant Contact etc) you can set a series of automated emails to go out when someone fills out an enquiry form. These are called autoresponders and go out at pre-defined time periods. Obviously you don’t want to spam people but a casual thank you email followed by a top tips email a week later might go down well and make you look switched on.

Get your social policies and strategy in place.
If you don’t want to fall into the same trap as the University Professor who tweeted about Obese doctors last year then make sure your team know what’s expected of them when interacting online. Social provides huge opportunities for your business but its your responsibility to make sure your team know the boundaries.

Fire up your digital presence, enjoy your 2014 and let me know when you get some significant wins.

Oh and Happy Easter :)

Image courtesy of https://www.flickr.com/photos/jefthomas/ 

6 things that changed my life in 2012

6 things that changed my life in 2012

Well hello there people. A very Happy New Year to you all.

As has become customary on this blog (see previous years: 2009, 2010 & 2011) its my time to have a little fun and go off script. So here we go, here are the top things that changed my life in 2012.

1). Pinterest – I’ll admit, it took me a while to get going with Pinterest. For some months I just couldn’t get my head around it, either personally or for business. The last few months of the year have seen a huge change in my view – here’s what I’ve been upto over there. Here are just a few of the reasons I use it. Remembering things I want to buy at some point (I have a hopeless memory), sharing a board with my partner Lizz (we keep things that we both need/want) and we collaborate on ideas for the house, garden and wedding. Possibly my most important use for it is to keep pictures which represent my goals. These are a visual stimulant for me. If your goals aren’t in front of you regularly you’re far less likely to achieve them. I use Pinterest to give me the kick I need. I love it and feel its going to be around for  long time. If you’ve not done so already, you should take a look around.

2). OptixMail – After a very successful year in 2011 with Envirosend, our email marketing product, we decided that ‘email marketing’ could work as a business itself. We re-branded & recruited in Olly Harrison to run the business for us and boy has it taken off. Olly has landed some great new clients and its looking to be even bigger this year. Many said we were crazy to create a new business in an economic downturn. My feeling is its these kind of moves which define whether you’ve got the kahunnas to grow, even in times of adversity .

3). Lizz – Yes, she makes this list again and this year its because we’ve had a lot of fun organising our wedding together (which I’m sure will feature next year)! A tough year for her personally, she always bounces back and is the rock I need away from work.

4). Buying our first house – Lizz and I rented for years so we finally made the move to buy in 2012. Back in March we moved into our first home just outside Exeter and are currently working hard to give it that ‘Lizz and Al touch’. There is something very special about sitting on your sofa, looking around your house, knowing that you can do whatever you want to it. I can heartily recommend it to anyone considering making the jump.

5). Our team at Optix – Ok so not exactly a specific point in time but I honestly feel that we have the best team we’ve ever had (see what some of the guys had to say about working for Optix earlier this year). People are pulling together & working for each other. Some of the guys that have been in the business for a long time are maturing into great managers and adding value to the business in more ways than just through the skills they joined for originally. Optix grew over 20% last year and looks set to do the same again this coming year. Office moves and new staff are all on the cards early in Jan. An exciting year ahead no doubt.

6). Creating our Vision Statement – I know, I know, it’s embarrassing that we’ve been motoring along without one for so long (well we did have some fag packet stuff but it’s not quite the same). This year James and I sat down and wrote our vision statement in the form of a story set in 2015. After reading it out at one of our team meetings I’ve already noticed more solidarity in the business and have had the story quoted back at me a number of times. I’m looking forward to working this vision out with the amazing team I mentioned above. We all have a place to point towards and decisions can be made with this in mind. Creating a vision statement/story is something I’d recommend you do if you don’t have one for your business already.

So there we go again, another year passes and we look to 2013 for even bigger and better things. I hope you enjoyed my bit of fun, it would be good to hear yours now.

Now Your Thoughts

  • So what changed your life this year?
  • Who and what made an impact on your 2012?

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