Archives for May 2015

Understand Your Audience With Social Media Monitoring

Social Media Monitoring

Companies all over the world have been harnessing the power of social media in order to build brand awareness and grow their businesses. They do this through relaying information about new products and services, or communicating with their customers by soliciting feedback or responding to issues/complaints. However, if these are the only ways your organization is using tools such as Twitter, Facebook, etc., you are overlooking a huge opportunity: social networking sites can also be used in order to gain valuable information on your current and future consumers.

Why?

Any marketing expert will tell you that understanding your audience is the key to effective sales. If your target market is girls between the ages of 12 and 15, and your product has a price tag of $300+, you’re going to have a major problem. Using tools in order to monitor your brand’s followers can help you gain valuable insights into your consumers. This information can be used in a number of ways, from developing new product lines to finding new venues for advertising.

How?

Now that you know some of the potential benefits of using this tool, how do you put it into practice? Essentially you want to monitor the activity of your current or potential customers as they use social networking sites, and then in terms of what is most useful to you. One way to do this is to hone in on your company’s followers on social channels. Even if they’re not discussing your brand, or communicating with your company directly, they are still putting out crucial data about their values and interests. Take note of things that come up frequently across the board. You can also gain intelligence on the strength of your brand, how positively or negatively followers feel about it, and how influential those communications are.

Then What?

After you gain some insight into trends among consumers, test out some advertising methods. One of the best things about selling via these networks is that you can quickly and efficiently test keywords in order to identify what’s gaining traction, so don’t be afraid to get creative. Once you find keywords that generate sufficient results, you can begin to invest more in those avenues. In addition to testing marketing locations, you can also use this material on consumer commonalities to create new ad copy. For example, if you’ve found out that the people who buy your brand’s dog food are also interested in green initiatives, this can help you develop new and more effective advertising.

. Check out the messages put out by anyone in the community who has some interest in your field, or is contributing to the conversation. By using these and other strategies in audience monitoring, you’ll begin to see improvements in your marketing goals across the board.

3 Emerging Technologies and What They Teach Small Businesses

The way consumers use technology impacts the way they spend money on everything else. Even “non-tech” companies need to have a general understanding of the way people are using technology and what they have come to expect from the products that they use.

3 Emerging Technologies and What They Teach Small Businesses

As technology evolves, so does the mentality of its users and businesses must take a good look at how consumer behaviors are impacted by technology to understand what those customers expect from them.

Take a look at some emerging consumer technologies that will affect the way people live their daily lives – and should be on every business’ radar.

StoreDot’s FlashBattery

The days of waiting for your cell phone or tablet to charge may be coming to an end. The FlashBattery boasts that it can charge a smartphone battery in under one minute. The battery also stores more power than traditional smartphone batteries.

Small business takeaway: Consumers continue to want efficient technology that considers their everyday lives, and makes it more streamlined. Customer service means meeting needs quickly and offering something just a little bit more efficient than competitors.

Nixie

Selfie-taking has certainly changed the way photography is taken and shared. Drone technology has changed the way items are delivered and photographed from afar. Combine these two technology trends and you have Nixie, a camera that flies away from you, snaps a shot, and comes back in a boomerang fashion. The images are taken in high definition too – in 1080 pixel video.

Small business takeaway: Consumers like to be the focus of their technology and have it go above and beyond what they truly need.

Microsoft’s Home of the Future

More than any other emerging technology, this will be what changes everyday life for consumers if it gains mass adoption. A virtual assistant-type voice “Grace” greets residents and keeps track of things like the home’s temperature, unlocked doors, who comes and goes when, and even what groceries are getting low. Grace, in essence, serves as a reminder of what consumers have not yet remembered to do.

Even a few years ago technology like Grace would have seemed like the stuff of science fiction but the advancements are in place to make it actually happen today. Couple the actual technology with the fact that people are much more open to hyper-personalization on their smart devices and systems than they were a few years ago, and Microsoft may really have a winning product in its grasp. Expect other big-name tech companies like IBM and Apple to follow suit, though, and soon.

Small business takeaway: Consumers have grown accustomed to businesses anticipating their needs. If you wait for your customers to come to you, they will buy the product or service from someone else who approaches them first.

 

What does technology teach your small business?