Monthly Archives

October 2018

PRODUCT LAUNCH: DIGITAL MARKETING SECRET WEAPONS

By | Marketing Campaigns

Whether you run a new or existing business, a new product launch is a crazy combination of excitement, exhaustion and confusion.

Some businesses simply undertake a product launch quietly.  They then let them slowly grow in popularity as their existing customers discover them and ‘give em a try’. But this is a massive wasted opportunity. Your new products should be used to create a buzz and excitement around your brand which can take you to the next level in terms of growth and brand awareness.

But the question remains. How do you create a buzz around a product which isn’t yet available to buy and in some cases don’t even exist? In this article, we answer the question. We also reveal some of the secret weapons digital marketers use to plan and execute a product launch.

Community First

If you are an existing business with a strong brand, you may already have an audience ready and willing to buy and test your products as soon as they come on the market. But for start-ups or businesses who are looking to expand into new areas, building a community BEFORE launching a project can offer a platform to benefit in the same way.

social media community

Practically, this could mean creating an online community focused on the area specific to the product or service you are launching.

Although the LinkedIn platform has drastically changed the functionality of their ‘groups’ in recent months, this is something we did when originally launching Make It Mana, through the creation of an online ‘Micro-Influencer Marketing’ community.

By providing this community with substantial amounts of value in the months leading to the agency launch. We were able to successfully leverage that community once we had launched for the promotion of content AND for generating our first sales.

Not only are there many short-term benefits during the product launch stage, but these communities also offer invaluable feedback and ideas for product development as time goes on. 

Influencer Marketing

You will probably know by now that Make It Mana are huge advocates of influencer marketing. Many businesses have adopted influencer marketing as part of their marketing mix, but often only use it to increase the reach of their messaging.

However, influencers can be used to much greater effect by including them during and before a product launch. As they often gain their position of influence by truly understanding the content and topics which their (and your) audience want to hear, they can offer great insight into the types of products and services which will prove popular with those audiences. Therefore including influencers during product research and development is hugely beneficial.

“Working with influencers is a great way to get your target consumers excited about your product.  Be sure to identify influencers who reach not only your target market’s demographic profile but the psychographic one as well.  This means that the influencers should be in tune with the wants and needs of your target market.  You can check this by carefully looking at their content and how it resonates with their followers.  Look for good quality engagement in the form of comments and questions.  Also, be sure to look for micro influencers because their engagement is not only better than counterparts with huge followings, but they are much more affordable and easier to work with.” – Tom Augenthaler, The Influence Marketer

Besides offering invaluable insight, doing this also offers the benefit of immediately generating buy-in from the influencer and drastically increases the chances of creating a powerful brand advocate during and post-launch stages.

Create Social Proof

One of the major issues involved in a service or product launch is that you have no social proof that what you are offering is worth the money you are asking them to spend. However, when you are an established business, this can be less of a problem. For example, when Apple launches a new iPhone, people generally trust that it will be a decent product.

Yet for new businesses, you rely on early adopters creating social proof to highlight the new products worthiness. This can be risky, as it means the success of the product is taken entirely out of your hands.

Influencers can help you remedy this, especially if you can get the product to them to test and talk about ahead of product launch. However, doing this at scale can often be time-consuming and costly.

That is why engaging your personal network is a great way to create genuine social proof ahead of launch. This could involve recruiting friends, colleagues and family to try out the product in exchange for a short review. Even if you are dealing in high-cost items, you may systematically loan the item to a friend or family members.  They can then take some photos and write up a short review – just make sure you make this clear before handing it over to them.

As social proof is so powerful, ensure it is clear wherever possible throughout your product launch marketing campaign. For example, you could include full or partial reviews:

  • On your Facebook business page
  • On the selling platform (eg Amazon)
  • In an Instagram post
  • On your website homepage
  • On the item page on your website
  • At the bottom of any emails you send out to potential clients
  • On any printed collateral
  • Tattooed across for your forehead (so potential clients can see it when you meet them)

Paid Social 

Some businesses HATE to spend money on paid social media ads…we aren’t sure why this is, but they are missing a trick, especially when it comes to a product launch.

Unfortunately, most social platforms have caught onto the fact that they are offering incredible rates of exposure to businesses. They have adjusted their algorithms so that regardless of how big your organic reach is, you still have to pay them to reach the people that matter the most to your business.

Admittedly, this seems pretty damn unfair. But when launching a new product this does level the playing field somewhat. Regardless of whether your product is established or new, you have to pay the same to reach the same audience.

Although paid social certainly plays a part at various stages of the marketing cycle, arguably it is at its most important during the product launch stage. This is because you can access highly targeted audience through platforms like Instagram and Facebook. This is without the need to put in hundreds of hours to build a community, over which you have some influence…although of course we also recommend doing this.

Tease

When you have nailed your research and have created a product that people are going to truly want and love, teasing is going to help you create a buzz in the build-up to launch.

product launch tease

How you do this really depends on the product you are releasing. For example, if you were releasing a new app, you may create some teaser videos of it being used and the positive impact it will have on people’s lives. Whether that is pure entertainment or helping them do something more efficiently.

Social media is the perfect platform to host these teasers. They allow the community you are building to create a buzz around the content you are releasing. You may even consider only posting teasers for a limited amount of time. Therefore, creating even more urgency and buzz around the product’s release.

Product Launch Incentives 

Humans run off incentives. These incentives span from progressing your career, increase your social standing or save yourself some serious cash. Without incentives, very little would get done.

Using powerful incentives can create a huge amount buzz around your product. These incentives could include:

  • Pre-order for a discount
  • Win the product before it goes to mass market
  • Pre-order to get before others
  • Launch day/week/month discount
  • Win a product based experience
  • Win something else relevant to the product and brand

All of these ideas can be used to incentivise people to get involved in the launch. Whether that is purchasing the product or simply increasing engagement on social media.

 

We can see that digital marketers have some brilliant tricks up their sleeves when it comes to successfully launching a new product or service. By creating a comprehensive launch marketing campaign, you can turn your launch into a business changing event.

 

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HOW TO REPURPOSE BLOG CONTENT FOR GREATER REACH

By | Content Marketing

Smart marketers know that businesses need to create consistent, compelling content. Both to make their brand discoverable on search engines and to position themselves as a leader within the industry. Yet many don’t repurpose blog content to increase reach and generate leads.

Our clients constantly come to us with the challenge:

“We are spending LOADS of time creating great content, but we just aren’t seeing the benefit of it”

We get it. There is a great frustration in investing resources in creating useful, entertaining content, which just doesn’t seem to perform when it comes to helping you achieve your business goals.

A big part of this problem is that we spend too much time creating the content and very little time leveraging that content to generate greater reach. In fact, in many cases, we discover that businesses are putting almost zero effort into promoting a piece of content.

As a general rule, we spend roughly 30% of our allocated content marketing time creating content and then 70% of our time looking to increase the reach of that content. After all, it doesn’t matter how incredible your content is, if it doesn’t reach anybody there is very little point to it at all.

In this article, we cover some tips on how we can repurpose blog content to increase your business’s reach. O, and it will save you a tonne of time in the process.

Repurpose blog content socially

Before we dive too deep into some smart tactics, let’s start with the fundamentals.

Yes, it’s shocking, but some business actually fail to complete this step.

RULE #1: When you publish new content, share that with your network.

social media blog content

This is super easy, all you need to do is write a short update highlighting the benefits/relevance of reading the content and then share it across all your platforms including social media and mailing lists.

It’s simple but effective. People are part of your audience because they care about what you have to say. These are the best and easiest way to repurpose blog content…so DO IT!

Re-share

We admit, it is pretty rare that businesses don’t share new content with their network (but it does happen). Yet it is commonplace that once they have shared that content once, they never mention it again.

This, my friends, is INSANITY.

“After all that work, it seems silly to share a post just once. Nobody crumples up an oil painting and chucks it in the trash after it’s been seen one time — and the same goes for your content” Moz.com

Most don’t re-share content at the risk of being ‘spammy’. This is a very real concern and can be the case when not done carefully.

When re-sharing content you need to follow three simple rule:

  1. Because you re-share doesn’t mean you stop creating new content
  2. Every time you re-share you should take a different approach
  3. Do not re-share content too often

What we mean by taking a different approach is that each time you post you should change the captions and/or image to ensure no repetition.

Re-sharing is particularly powerful when that content becomes timely or newsworthy. For example, we often re-share our infographic on how businesses can spot fake influencers as this topic comes in and out of focus in the media.

Speaking of infographics…

Infographics 

Another great way you can repurpose blog content to create more compelling assets which works perfectly on social media is through the use of infographics.

Infographics allow you to communicate key information through the use of engaging and eye-catching graphics. In the case where your blog content is long form, creating a snapshot of the most important points in an infographics acts both as a reminder of key information and as way to drive traffic to your original blog piece to ‘find out more’.

Probably a good time to share this then…

blog content infographicMicro-blogging

People are inherently lazy. So, even though long-form content is a crucial part of your SEO strategy, as well as an excellent way to position yourself as a thought leader with those that matter to your business, on its own it will not always secure you great results.

People want answers and they want them fast. That is a huge part of the reason why social media is so popular – because it gives people access to super quick information.

Using a micro-blogging approach to content leveraging is an excellent way to increase your reach and give yourself a huge amount of social media content easily. For example, you may re-share a link to a piece of long-form content, but instead of simply highlighting what is included in the content you give a snapshot of a key point within the content.

By providing value in the social caption you create intrigue in the wider article and can create large amounts of traffic to your site. 

Video clips  

Video is an awesome way to up engagement on your social media channels.

In fact, one study suggests that 90% of consumers say that video can help them make buying decisions. With those sorts of stats, can your business really afford to not be using video as a way to repurpose blog content?

video blog content

Video creation can be a little daunting, but as a small or medium sized business, you really do not need to think too much about the production value of your social media videos. Some of the best performing videos online are simply recorded on a smartphone and create a real personal connection between the business and the viewer.

For example, next time you publish a blog post, try creating a short video covering some of the key points or even asking additional questions you get about the blog post. This can take as little as 30 minutes and generates content (not factoring re-sharing) across a number of platforms, including:

  • Instagram story
  • Instagram post
  • Facebook story
  • Facebook post
  • Twitter post
  • YouTube video
  • Podcast (just audio)
  • and much more.

Go deep

 If you create a piece of content and it does particularly well, you may decide to leverage that attention and go even deeper. For example, creating an accompanying podcast or webinar which touches on the subject and allows you to generate even more value, using your written content as a base.

Doing this also allows you to involve thought leaders and influencers from within the industry which not only generates great content but also allows you to leverage their audience and extend your reach.

 

Blog content should indeed make up the pillars of your business’s content marketing strategy. However, by not leveraging other techniques and tactics you are only tapping to a tiny percentage of its potential. By spending an equal or higher percentage of your content marketing time generating and leveraging the tips we have highlighted above will save you time, create a higher engagement and ultimately generate more leads for your business.

HOW TO LEVERAGE SOCIAL MEDIA COMPETITIONS

By | Get To The Point, Social Media

How competitive are you?

Regardless of whether you are the type of person that would sell their own mother to win or whether you are a bit less bothered, it is undeniable that winning makes you feel good. This is why social media competitions are so popular, have a browse through your social feeds and it shouldn’t take you long to spot one.

But the results that businesses get from running social media competitions can vary and when not executed in a smart way can leave you feeling a bit deflated. In this ‘Get To The Point‘ blog we give you some quick top tips on how to leverage social media competitions for the better.

POINT 1: WINNER, WINNER

Who wins when you run a social media competitions? Is it the person who wins or the business? The answer to this, of course, should be ‘both’. Yet many businesses forget this.

It is crazy how many competitions you see on social that are focused towards one party winning more. You either see businesses giving away a heap of free gear for nothing in return, or asking for a lot with very little given as a prize. The former is the best the mistake to make, but a mistake none the less.

The first thing you need to decide is what you want to achieve by running a competition. Most likely this is something like growing your followers or perhaps getting newsletter sign-ups. You then need to decide what you will provide that is equal or slightly higher in value than what you are asking for.

Put it this way, if you want people to:

✅ Follow these six accounts

✅Join our mailing list

✅ Share this post

✅ get our logo tattoed on your face.

…then giving away a bag of jelly babies just ain’t gonna cut it.

POINT 2: IMPACT & RESULTS

You may have the best give away in the history of the world, but if people don’t know you are giving it away then you aren’t going to see any decent results. Very simply, ensuring that your images and copy are on point are going to go a long way to increase the engagement your competition receives.

You should be giving away something people really want to get their hands on, so using expert images or videos of the prize is a great way to grab attention. Equally, starting your competition copy in an obvious way like ‘WIN A MASSIVE BOAT’ will communicate your intentions quickly and the dwindling attention of social media users.

POINT 3: COLLABORATE & GROW

One easy and quick way to grow your competition potential is to collaborate with other businesses that are relevant to yours. For example, if you make custom made sleeping bags, approaching a tent business to throw some products on the pile and post on their social will allow both businesses to tap into the audience of the other.

View this post on Instagram

Did you see our COMPETITION announced on Monday?! 🎉 If you missed it, you have the chance to win an AMAZING set of prizes worth £300 from some of our favourite brands! 💪🏻 You will have the chance to win: @mancaveinc 1 Year’s Supply of Shower Gel and Moisturiser 🌿 (RRP £140) @huel Complete Food Starter Bundle 💪🏼 (RRP £40.50) – Including 2 Huel Pouches, 1 Flavour Boost Sample Set, 1 Shaker and Scoops and T-Shirt @wainwrightbeer Golden Beer 🍻 (RRP £13.20) @unionroasted Union Hand-Roasted Coffee in House Blend ☕️ (RRP £5.25) @huubdesign Quilted Men’s Jacket 🏃🏽‍♂ (RRP £89.99) @anotherescape Magazine: The Wilderness Volume 🌲 (RRP £12.00) To win, follow the instructions: 1. Follow all brands involved by clicking on their profiles mentioned above 🔖 2. Share the love by tagging a friend and liking this post 🙋🏻‍♂ 🙋🏻 3. Cross your fingers and hope you win! 🤞🏼 You have just 3 days left to enter! 👀 #OWNTHEBATHROOM #ManCave #OwnTheBathroom #Natural #SkinCare #Vegan #VeganFriendly #ForMen #MaleGrooming #MensHealth #CrueltyFree #SLSFree #SensitiveSkin #CrueltyFree #SoFreshAndSoClean #Green #Recycle #NaturallyDerived #NaturalDefence #MensHealth #SkinCareForMen #MensSkinCare #NaturalSkinCare

A post shared by ManCave (@mancaveinc) on

POINT 4: AMPLIFY YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA COMPETITION

When a social media competition is correctly executed they have huge power. However, they will only reach a limited audience of your followers and perhaps one or two of their connections. Using some simple social media targetting on paid ads is a great way to increase reach and engage relevant people in a powerful way.

 

This article has covered the basics of creating awesome social media competitions that you can use them to leverage business growth. Adopting what we have covered can mean the difference between both the business and the audience winning and both of you losing.

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ABOUT GTTP

The Get To The Point (GTTP) blogs are a series of posts written by Make It Mana for busy marketers and business owners that want to grow and leverage the best tools without wasting time reading reading pages and pages of content. We aim to make each guide around 500 words (although on occasion we go slightly over).

The aim is to really help the businesses that come to our blog, so if you have any questions shoot them over to hello@www.makeitmana.com

5 TRICKS FOR CREATING CONTENT YOUR CLIENTS WANT TO READ

By | Content Marketing

As an agency that produces a lot of content marketing for our clients, we will be the first to hold up our hands and say:

“Consistently finding new and interesting topics that your clients want to read about and learn from can be a BIG challenge”

This dilemma is also probably the biggest reason why businesses stop the important task of creating copy that boosts search engine rankings. Positioning themselves as industry leaders and brings invaluable sales.

The relentless re-hash of old topics into new content is a drag, so people simply give up.

But worry not! In this article, we call on our experience and outline 5 hacks for creating highly compelling, unique content.

 

Use Content Pillars

 

Inbound marketers LOVE pillar content.

Pillar content is usually a large piece of content which focuses on a main theme for your business. This may be a particular service or product you offer or a challenge that your customers regularly face.

 

content-pillars

For example, at Make It Mana our content pillars include influencer, social and content marketing.

Best practice usually dictates that businesses create pillar content, for example, an eBook or whitepaper, and then break that content into smaller chunks, which can be used across social media, blogs posts etc.

However, we have also found that working backwards can work well in the development of pillar content. This works by deciding on which topics would be key pieces of content for your brand and then breaking those topics into the smaller chunks which make it up. By systematically creating content covering those smaller chunks, you can then create a directory of those as your pillar content.

Take for example influencer marketing. We may create shorter blog posts on influencer selection, influencer outreach, leveraging influencer content, building influencer relationships and the laws and regulations around influencer marketing. Once that is done, we could create one piece of pillar content which either contains or hyperlinks to each piece of individual content.

 

Survey Customers

 

One of the biggest mistakes we ever see being made with content marketing is marketers trying to use every tool and trick in the book. All in an attempt to work out what their customers want to learn about.

But they never actually ask their customer. This is an incredibly quick win when it comes to creating unique ideas for content marketing. Simply by asking clients what they want to read or which challenges they are facing you put yourself in a great position to create value.

Of course, using some other methods in this article will be useful.  Customers do not always know their pain points until you help them find them. However, a survey is the quickest, easiest and most valuable win.

If you don’t think your customers have or will give you the time to find out what content would be useful, try offering some incentive such as a donation to charity in their name for some of their time.

 

Jump on Trends

 

If you have ever attended a presentation where the presenter was attempting to prove the increasing popularity of something, whether that be prosecco flavoured popsicles or hair styling for dogs, they probably used a graph from Google trends.

The tool is used to show the number of searches for a particular phrase or keyword over a given amount of time. Therefore highlighting its growing popularity.

However, the tool also has a lesser used feature which is a goldmine for those looking for new and untapped topics. By typing a relevant keyword, the results allow you to see ‘related topics’ and ‘related queries’.

By simply selecting the ‘rising’ tab you will bring up a whole list of up and coming searches related to your topic. For example, we ran this for ‘influencer marketing’and found that rising queries included ‘what is influencer marketing’ and ‘Instagram influencer marketing’, so we may choose to create some content in those areas – focusing directly on what people are searching for in the area of our expertise.

BuzzSumo is another good tool which can be used to identifying up and coming trends in your industry. This option is certainly worth exploring if you have some budget put aside for content marketing tools.  It also fulfils some other needs such as influencer identification.

 

Go James Bond

 

Ok, this is a loose analogy, but we had to slip the British icon in somewhere.

 

content-marketing-spying

For a moment forget the explosions, bond girls and evil villains and focus more on the spying. One of the greatest sources of content ideas should be your competition. This is especially true if you have much larger competitors who have the resource to invest a lot of time in market research.

But when we say spy, we don’t mean copy. Instead, you should use your competitors content as inspiration. What questions have they not answered? How can you add more value?

You can also check what questions their customers are asking, either in the blog comments or on social media. This allows you to helpfully answer their questions and gently encourage them to choose you instead.

 

Add Value

 

For content marketers the fear is real. You don’t want your customers to think you are simply stealing others ideas and representing it as your own. But this shouldn’t put you off touching on the same subjects as your competitors.

Instead of avoiding repeating subject matter, ensure that for every piece of content you produce adds value to the conversation. This may occasionally be in direct contrast to your competitors. For example, you may offer a completely different viewpoint on a subject. However, it may also be aligned with your competitor’s view, instead of adding depth and breadth to the conversation.

If the reader isn’t learning anything new by reading your content, then you need to rethink your strategy.

 

Finding new, engaging and worthwhile content ideas can be hard work. Especially in industries where the scope of products and services are small. However, using a few tested methods such as those we have outlined above can keep great new ideas flowing.

For some business owners and marketers, their time is better spent focusing on the wider picture. Leveraging the time and expertise of others in the formulation of content. Make It Mana work with businesses to maintain the flow of valuable content, from ideation through to publication and promotion.

Get in touch to find out more.