As our team is working its way through what has historically been the busiest month of the year (and this year is no different!), we can’t help but reflect on an amazing afternoon that we co-hosted, earlier this month, with our digital marketing friends at Forthea. While it’s only been just over a week, the daily grind in the Integrate office has already made our InnovateDIGITAL event feel like decades ago. Before we wander too far from it, we wanted to share some insights from Integrate and Forthea’s first-ever InnovateDIGITAL marketing event, entitled “Finding Customers in a Digital World.”
Additionally, we hope you’ll join us at future events, which we’re aiming to co-host with Forthea, on a twice-yearly or quarterly basis, bringing in other marketing professionals that we’ve come to know (and love) to share the latest with you!
Now, onto the highlights!
Forthea’s president (and brand new dad to a healthy baby girl!), Chris Pappas, kicked things off with a presentation entitled “Chasing Digital Marketing ROI.” Check out Forthea’s highlights on its blog for a deeper look at Chris’ presentation and the overall state of advertising.
Following Chris, our president and founder, Allie Danziger, shared “The Importance of Online Influencer Partnerships for Brand Awareness.” While her presentation was packed with information, the marketers in the room walked away with the following key takeaways:
- The marketing landscape and consumer buying habits are changing. So much so that only 3% of people (we call them “influencers”) generate 90% of the impact online!
- Because of this, studies show that influencer marketing is 11 times more effective than banner ads.
- To showcase just how effective influencer marketing can be, Allie shared highlights from our blogger partnerships with client, On Point Custom Homes. You might just remember the results (which are still coming!) from a previous blog post.
- Likewise, Allie shared the success our team has had working with client, G&A Partners, to not only participate in Twitter chats, but to host its own, reaching thousands of influential HR professionals through influencer partnerships. Look out for a case study in a future blog post!
- Anyone remember our Brian Gavin Diamonds’ #BGDBesties campaign? Again, partnering with bloggers, the BGD team invited bloggers and their best gal pals to an event, kicking off a social media contest for National Girlfriends Day. Another great example of how partnership with influencers can help brands reach target audiences.
- In order to build influencer partnerships, Allie left the crowd with the following advice:
- Set your goals first – are you aiming for brand awareness, new audiences, content creation, hoping to drive traffic or something entirely different?
- Once you’ve set your goals, determine the right influencers to partner with based on their respective reach, resonance and relevance.
- After you’ve selected your influencers, remember to be a good partner, so that both parties will receive maximum benefit. How do you go about being a good partner? Easy: treat influencer partnerships as you would members of the traditional media and as part of the old-school, “smile and dial” PR strategy. On that same note, make their lives as easy as possible! Keep their goals in mind, treat them with respect and giving them a little something special helps, as well. Of course, nurture the newly-formed relationship.
- Lastly, measure your success. Create a tracking URL to see how many folks are clicking on the link influencers are sharing on your behalf. Monitor the reach, resonance and relevance of their blog posts, social media posts and mentions. If you can, track sales and/or leads from the partnership. Once you understand the success of the campaign, be sure to share it with your influencers, as well. This is a fantastic way to further help with step three, being a good partner.
Interested in seeing or learning more? Email us and we’ll send you the presentation!
Next, Forthea’s SEO Lead, Beau Pedraza, tied each of our presentations together beautifully, through his presentation “It’s 2016, Get SEO Out of the Silo.” His main takeaway? SEO works best when it’s integrated with a larger marketing strategy, that includes public relations, social media, SEM/PPC and more. As you know, we’re all about integrated approaches! Learn more on Forthea’s blog.
Lastly, our VP of Sales & Special Projects, Jenny Gustafson, presented “How & Where to Find Your Targets on Social Media.” With so many social media channels to choose from, each with its own algorithms, rules and quirks, Jenny talked through steps to understand how to select the right channels to focus time, energy and marketing dollars, based on your target audiences. Check out the highlights:
- First, she shared some pretty telling statistics about why social media matters in the first place. For instance, people aged 55-64 are more than twice as likely to engage with branded content than those 28 years old or younger, while at the same time, 46% of millennials rely on social media when making their online purchases.
- Jenny recommends asking yourself the five following questions:
- Who makes up my target audience/demographic? Do they identify as male or female? How old are they? What types of income and/or spending power do they have? What level of education do they have? What types of behaviors do they exhibit and/or what other brands are they connected to?
- What social media channels are they using or will they be using in the future?
- How can I pay to find and/or target them on social media?
- How can I find them through organic (read: free or mostly free) methods and tools?
- Where should I spend my time, energy and marketing dollars to find and/or connect with these audiences?
- Overall, those in attendance saw and heard several compelling statistics behind the current demographics using Facebook (the most used social media channel, and the most used across various age groups), Twitter (mostly international/non-American), Instagram (mostly millennial and mostly non-white), LinkedIn (most educated user base), Pinterest (mostly female), Snapchat (the favorite channel of America’s youth) and YouTube (the second largest online search engine behind Google). For a deeper dive into these stats, check out HootSuite’s blog.
- Next, she addressed how to find target audiences utilizing native platforms and free and paid tools, including advertising.
- To find target audiences on Facebook, advertising is key.
- To find target audiences on Instagram, advertising is also beneficial, but also possible by searching strategic hashtags, nearby locations, competitors or like-minded brands, all through the Instagram app.
- To find target audiences on Twitter, she recommended taking advantage of Twitter’s advanced search tool.
- To find target audiences on Pinterest and to send traffic to your website, advertising is a must!
- While Snapchat is still a newbie compared to the other social channels discussed, it’s still possible to find targets, especially influencers through Snapchat’s tool that allows you to find people similar to the code of the person you just scanned.
- Other free places of note to check out in order to find current and potential customers: your own fans and followers and their network of followers, competitors’ fans and followers, Facebook or LinkedIn groups and/or Twitter chats.
- Lastly, always remember that social media is constantly in flux! The audiences and demographics that may be using one of these channels today will be different tomorrow.
As with Allie’s presentation, if you’re interested in learning more and/or seeing Jenny’s presentation, shoot us an e-mail here.
We’d LOVE to see you at our next InnovateDIGITAL event. Interested in attending? Click here to get in touch and we’ll add you to the list for next time!