Tag: video

Digital Marketing Explained: Page Goals and Design

Digital Marketing Explained: Page Goals and Design

This is a part of the Digital Marketing Explained Holy Grail Post Series, the outline will be kept together on the Digital Marketing page.
ditial marketing holy grail
Organic digital marketing refers to the optimisation of traffic that you would receive organically (without having to promote) from direct website visits, links from search engines, links from other websites or email referrals. Social media profiles will also receive organic traffic but that will be discussed in the social media section.

Website or Landing Page

Defining Your Goals

First and foremost you need to define your goals of your page. Ideally there should be at least one “conversion metric” that could range from soft metrics like time on site to hard metrics like sales.

Here is a list of example metrics

  • Interaction Metrics
    • Article Views
      • Article reads (30 sec+)
      • Time on article pages
    • Video Views
    • Audio Listens
    • Podcast Downloads
    • Game Plays
    • Pages/Visitor
  • Email Capture via
    • Newsletter subscription
    • Competitions
    • Downloads
    • Event registration
  • Sales
    • Online Sales
    • Offline Sales Leads

Once you have defined your goals, your next task is to design your page with those goals in mind and follow best practice web design principles.

Designing Your Page

When designing your page there are layout, compatibility, accessibility, navigation, multimedia, content and design elements to consider. For each of these there are best practices to ensure that you do, try to avoid and just some general tips.

Layout

Ensure that the page

  •  is appealing to you target audience
  •  has consistent branding, style, header and logo
  •  has consistent & relevant navigation
  •  has consistent all fonts, font sizes, and font colours across the site
  •  uses an informative page title
  •  includes relevant keywords in its title and body
  •  includes credibility factors like corporate name, site name et cetera
  •  includes a footer with copyright, contact details, privacy policy, last updated date
  •  has good use of basic design principles: repetition, contrast, proximity, and alignment
  •  keeps all the most important information “above the fold”
  •  has a good balance of text/graphics/white space on page – not too many distractions
  •  has a good contrast between text and background
  •  has compelling, interesting information above the fold

Avoid

  •  repetitive information like the header, logo and navigation taking up more than ¼ to 1/3 of the area above the fold
  •  having a slow loading page

Compatibility & Accessibility

Ensure that the page:

  •  is compatible with all major browsers (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, Safari)
  •  is compatible across all major operating systems (Windows, Mac, Linux)
  • is suitable for the blind and screen reader friendly

Use:

  •  navigation aids such as site map, skip navigation link, or breadcrumbs
  •  captions are for each audio or video file used
  •  common fonts such as Arial or Times New Roman
  •  alternate text and titles for images or multimedia
  • Preferably navigation should be structured in an unordered list

Navigation

Ensure that the navigation links

  •  are clear and consistently labelled
  •  are easy to use for target audience
  •  are also clear text links in the footer section of the page
  •  all are working links (check for broken links)

Avoid:

  •  using images, Flash, or DHTML for the main navigation

Multimedia

Ensure that:

  •  graphics are optimised for web and do not significantly slow the site download
  •  each audio, video or Flash file used does serve a clear purpose & enhances, rather than distracts from the page
  •  download times for audio or video files are indicated
  •  links to downloads for media plug-ins are provided

Writing Content

When writing content for the web, ensure that the content:

  •  uses techniques of web optimised writing are used such as headings tags, bullet points, short sentences in short paragraphs with a good use of white space
  •  provides meaningful, useful information
  •  is organized in a consistent manner
  •  can be found easily (minimal clicks, searching or scrolling)
  •  is up to date (and the date of the last revision and/or copyright date is accurate)
  •  provides links to other useful sites or pages

Avoid

  •  outdated material
  •  typographical, spelling and grammatical errors
  •  the use of “Click here” when writing text for hyperlinks
  •  non-standard link colours (if used, have a consistent set of colors to indicate visited/nonvisited status)

Design Elements

For best practices around block quotes, about pages, coming soon pages, error pages, buttons, image captions and more have a look at Smashing Magazine’s web design best practices. Furthermore, hongkiat.com provides a great resource on best practices and examples for call to action buttons.

When briefing your page to a designer or just in getting your head around it, it helps to start off with wireframes.

What's Newsified Today December 29, 2011

What's Newsified Today December 29, 2011

Here’s the top recent articles from my favourite blogs and news sites:

What's Newsified Today December 25, 2011

What's Newsified Today December 25, 2011

Here’s the top recent articles from my favourite blogs and news sites:

What's Newsified Today December 20, 2011

What's Newsified Today December 20, 2011

Here’s the top recent articles from my favourite blogs and news sites:

Best Facebook Apps for Fan Engagement and Building Community

Best Facebook Apps for Fan Engagement and Building Community

Social Media Examiner posted this article about the top 10 apps to engage Facebook fans & build your community.

Here’s the abridged version of their rankings:

#1: Fan of the Week for Pages
Tracks of participation on your page & automatically posts a “shout out” to your fan of the week.
#2: Booshaka
It highlights fans that are participating on your page more often with a custom tab called Top Fans that’s added to your page. Provides you with stats too.
#3: NetworkedBlogs
From RSS it can pull in the title of your blog posts, first picture in the post (or a blog screen shot if there isn’t a picture) & an excerpt of the post.
#4: Post Planner
Not just scheduling but scheduling with pictures or video too!
#5: YouTube App
Get your YouTube channel, integrate it into your Facebook page = easy access to your videos!
#6: Livestream
Bring live video events to your Facebook page, interact with the audience, record the events for later viewing!
#7: ContactMe
Make it easy for people to get in touch with you with a Facebook page contact form. Add many different fields & customise the form. Easy.

Bring live video events to your Facebook page, interact with the audience, record the events for later viewing!
#8: Newsletter Subscription
Get people to subscribe to your newsletter straight from Facebook!
Constant Contact
MailChimp
#9: Scribd for Pages
The Scribd app lets people easily view documents right in the Facebook tab & also download it if they wish.
#10: Ecwid
Open a store operating within Facebook. It is integrated with PayPal, Google Checkout, Authorize.net and several other payment processing options.

There you go! So get apping!

What's News Today December 15, 2011

What's News Today December 15, 2011

Here’s the daily digest from my favourite blogs and news sites:

What's News Today December 14, 2011

What's News Today December 14, 2011

Here’s the top 10 daily digest from my favourite blogs and news sites:

Digest powered by RSS Digest

8 Tips for Using Social Blogging to Grow Your Business

8 Tips for Using Social Blogging to Grow Your Business

Quick takeaways:
1. Position yourself as an expert.
2. Share experiences and information.
3. Keep it fresh and mix it up.
4. Encourage interaction and feedback.
5. Use schedulers and update apps.
6. Make your blog the central hub.
7. Link back to your website.
8. Use a personal touch.

Amplify’d from www.inc.com

Use continuous updates and punchy messages to heighten interest and keep your customers informed about products or services which in turn can boost sales.

Social networking. The big corporations have bought into it. Smaller companies, too. Even independent consultants use Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook to do business. It is a great way to get the word out about your product or service. It boosts brand awareness, it builds loyalty, and it attracts and retains customers.

But more companies are exploring ways to get a bigger pay off with social media. The next frontier of social networking and weblogging is social blogging. This ever-changing construct represents a way of communicating for people who like to inform each other about their daily activities and share common points of interest, according to Wikipedia authors Lambert M. Surhone, Mariam T. Tennoe, and Susan F. Henssonow. This is usually done through continual updates that often include text, pictures, audio, or video.

In general, you want to use social media to increase your visibility, improve your search engine results, and drive more traffic to your company’s website, which stands a good chance of increasing sales and growing the business. Social blogging is simply another tool to add to your overall social media strategic toolkit.

Business owners whose companies are at all levels of growth, from promising start-ups to established and mature firms, are looking for effective promotional tools that are also cost-effective, says Gail Z. Martin, author of 30 Days To Social Media Success. “Though social media is one of the most exciting new communications tools to emerge in the last twenty years and can provide cost effective marketing, it’s one of the most misunderstood mediums,” says Martin.

Social media, be it weblogging, microblogging (i.e., Twitter), or posting status updates, is a different kind of marketing. It’s not about creating a sales pitch for your product or service. Instead, it’s about generating interest and keeping your audience current on news, events, and the latest product developments. A social blog is essentially a form or combination of microblogs (short posts) and status updates. Users post content such as short sentences, images, or video links to large groups of friends, followers, or co-workers. As with traditional weblogging, users can write messages on topics that range from “what am I doing right now” to thematic ones such as “best places to eat sushi.” These messages can be transmitted via posting, text messaging, or e-mailing.

Businesses can use the concept of social blogging to provide up-to-the-minute news as they will find the need for quicker, current, and condensed information far more useful to their audiences, say social media gurus. But social blogs and status updates on Twitter and Facebook, for instance, aren’t just limited to news content, businesses also can use these as effective forms of communication to reach large groups of consumers and associates instantaneously to learn about their needs and wants.

Starbucks Corporation is a social media giant when it comes to engagement, including incorporating blogs, status updates, tweets, and forums. When the trendy Seattle-based coffeehouse chain realized that its sales were stagnating and that competition was becoming fierce, it had to find ways to solidify and expand its market share. In 2009, Starbucks launched the interactive MyStarbucksIdea website and corporate blog. While some industry analysts doubted whether the site would catch on, well over 100,000 internet users had visited the site by the end of its first week online. The site allows users to submit ideas for new drinks, food items, packages, even store designs. Suggestions are voted on by Starbucks consumers with the most popular ones getting highlighted.

But Starbucks took it a step further, adding an “Ideas in Action” blog that gives updates to users on the status of suggested changes. Starbucks doesn’t just communicate news and business developments with its audience, but it also lets them know which of their suggestions the company has really taken to heart. Starbucks also has fully embraced Twitter beyond notifying consumers about bargains; @Starbucks focuses on sharing interesting events and music information or brand- and charity-related topics the company would like to address. It’s not a one-way monologue. Followers are not just entertained. They are being engaged in a brand and conversations around it.

Like Starbucks, Zappos embraces microblogging to manage customer relations. Tweets @Zappos are used to highlight interesting facts, and to talk to customers in a way that is friendly, helpful, funny and trustworthy. The Brooklyn Kitchen keeps foodies up to date on events from notices about the new book club in full swing to the next skills knife class kicking off. Amateur chefs Taylor Erkkinen and Harry Rosenblum opened The Brooklyn Kitchen in 2006 after scouring the neighborhood for kitchenware and coming up empty-handed. Today, their homegrown shop is crammed wall to wall with tools for both serious cooks and hobbyists. The duo focuses on providing useful and targeted information in their posts whether it’s through their website, weblog, or twitter account. From videos on how to shuck oysters or saber a champagne bottle, Erkkinen and Rosenblum always provide real value for enthusiastic cooking fans.

Dig Deeper: 5 Ways to Actually Make Money on Twitter

This type of added-value and engagement translates to increased brand awareness and direct sales. These companies demonstrate the effective use of compelling and condensed content aligned with ta
ngible business objectives. Here are some tips to help you make the most of social blogging:

1. Position yourself as an expert. When people are looking for a product or service, oftentimes they will first look for information about the subject on the Internet. In general, blogging is about having conversations in a public space that position you as a subject matter expert. “The type of discussions you ideally should have ought to be answering questions that people out there on the Internet are searching for,” says Adria Richards, Organic Technology Consultant and blogger. “For me, social blogging is a way to have conversations with potential customers and to draw traffic to your site.” For instance, you can answer questions from consumers via Twitter, which is a popular thing to do.

2. Share experiences and information. Social blogging is often used to share experiences in addition to business ideas and concepts. Always seek unique opportunities to share your ideas and offerings with not only your readers, but their associates as well, which will eventually bring in more prospects. Announce upcoming events, awards, and other news. But do it in a conversational tone. Hopefully, your target audience will retweet or share your story. Don’t overlook Tunmblr, which is popular in the microblogging realm. Users can post text, photos, quotes, links, dialogues, audio, video, slideshows and “Tumble” other posts. Tumblr provides the option of custom domains. You can auto-syndicate to Facebook and Twitter. Users can track stats with Google Analytics.

Read more at www.inc.com