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Remote Communication Opportunities For B2B Marketers

Woman at desk with multiple monitors working remotely image.

Woman at desk with multiple monitors working remotely image.

The challenges brought about by COVID-19 are multi-faceted and permeate the lives of B2B marketers on many levels, yet they also thankfully present new opportunities.

Remote work and online business communications are two of the major benefits modern B2B marketers can take advantage of now thanks to the technological advances the Internet and its 50-plus year history has made possible.

As a remote worker for the past 13 of my 36 years working in online communications, I’ll offer up a selection of tips to keep in mind as we all adjust to the numerous business changes brought about by COVID-19.

We’ll also look at how the present situation affects the issues of brand purpose and trust, resources and tools for newly-minted remote workers, social media best-practices during challenging times, and how we can learn from the challenges.

Our CEO Lee Odden recently asked “Should COVID-19 Stop B2B Marketers From Marketing?” — looking at new challenges and opportunities to be even more relevant and useful for clients, while also being responsible to the health and safety of employees, customers and community.

Let’s dig in and look at five ways B2B marketers can embrace remote communication opportunities to reach new heights.

1 — Cultivate Greater Brand Purpose & Build More Trust

Survey data has over the past several years increasingly shown that consumers in both B2B and B2C are placing more importance than ever on brand purpose and the trust that successful businesses cultivate.

A recent Association of National Advertisers (ANA) survey showed that 82 percent of B2B executives see companies with purpose having more success than those without.

Taking A Stand Image

Brand purpose and trust are both simultaneously in play for B2B marketers during this time of COVID-19 changes, and a number of publications have recently released helpful guides to brand social media activity for sensitive times.

RivalIQ’s “The Impact of Coronavirus on Social Media Engagement for Brands” provides information on how the COVID-19 situation has affected social media engagement rates, and Social Fresh’s “How To Adjust Your Social Media Marketing During Coronavirus, “ explores the delicate balance brands need to keep with their social media campaigns during the present health concerns.

Building brand trust for B2B marketers is a subject we’ve explored in several articles, including:

[bctt tweet=”“The best thing marketers can do is be as sensitive as possible to the current health crisis when creating any social media posts or strategy.” @BlairFeehan” username=”toprank”]

2 — Use Powerful & Abundant Remote Collaboration Tools

Powerful online collaboration platforms such as those offered by our clients Slack and Monday.com provide the type of robust remote communication that has seen dramatically-increased use since the rise in awareness brought about by COVID-19.

Slack has put together a collection of resources for people using its online collaboration platform for remote work, including “The Manager’s Manual for Remote Work,” “Distance Learning Thrives in Slack,” and “Slack on Slack: Adapting the Way we Work When Offices Need to Close,” each offering helpful insight both for the Slack community and anyone looking to do the best work they can remotely.

Monday.com has used the present COVID-19 situation to increase its integration with the popular Zoom online meeting service, and has also brought together its own selection of helpful remote work tools in “5 Tools You Need to Become Remote-Work-Ready.” As we have also done at TopRank Marketing, Monday.com has its team now temporarily working remotely.

Our client Adobe has made some of its online collaboration tools available free to students, and our client Arm Treasure Data has also put together a compendium of remote work tips, in its “Lessons Learned WFH—5 Tips to Make It Work for You.”

[bctt tweet=”“During this time of transition, it’s also important that marketers review their planned advertising, social and marketing messages to be appropriate to what customers are dealing with right now. ” @LeeOdden” username=”toprank”]

3 — Reflect, Regroup & Refocus With a New Perspective

Tying The Strings Together Image

Seeing things from a new perspective  — whether it’s from a temporary new remote working environment or from in-person meetings moved online — provides a fine opportunity to reflect, regroup, and refocus on existing and upcoming projects.

Working in a new environment can give you a fresh look at your next marketing campaign or influencer marketing project, and also provides a great opportunity to reassess currently-running projects with a new remote-oriented eye.

Once you’re settled into a different work location it’s not unusual to find new energy that naturally will go into your current projects if you let it, so don’t be afraid to tap into that energy and use it as a launching point for creating powerful new work. The Harvard Business Review has taken a look at the role of reassurance and being proactive with communications, in “Communicating Through the Coronavirus Crisis.”

[bctt tweet=”“Brand purpose and trust are both simultaneously in play for B2B marketers during this time of COVID-19 changes.” @lanerellis” username=”toprank”]

4 — Take The Opportunity To Tackle Learning New Things

With more at-home time available even after the workday has finished, now can be a great time to expand your knowledge in new areas.

Our client LinkedIn has made some of its premium LinkedIn Learning courses available free, with “Remote Working: Setting Yourself and Your Teams Up for Success,” and the professional social network has also put together its own collection of helpful remote work resources, in both “In This Together: Sharing Our COVID-19 Learnings,” and “Staying Informed and Connected: Resources to Help Navigate Work and Coronavirus.”

Many experienced remote workers have used the recent COVID-19 situation to share their advice for productive online work, including my pal and fellow former computer bulletin board system SysOp Meryl Evans, offering up “38 Awesome Things About Remote Working.”

5 — Learn With Remote Working Tips

Finally, here are five additional remote working tips I’d like to share with you — items that have helped me during my 13-plus year stint of remote work:

  1. Create your own physical workspace. Whether it’s a dedicated room in your home where you’ll be doing the bulk of your work, a co-working space in another location, or a full-on private spot in an office building as I’ve chosen, having a physical place that you can leave at the end of the workday is an ideal way to separate your personal and professional life.
  2. Build a regular schedule into your remote workday — one that pulls some of the best elements from your previous office location — in order to bring a similar sense of organization to your remote work.
  3. Learn to savor the advantages of working remotely, especially those from working at home. Especially if your remote work situation isn’t a permanent one, take time to appreciate the little things that working remotely provides, whether it’s eating lunch with your partner or children, listening to music as loud as you want to, taking a lunchtime walk in a new area, or enjoying extra time saved from not having a lengthy work commute.
  4. Minimize distractions as much as possible, so that you can use remote work to find newfound focus on your projects. If working from home, let the people in your home know when you’ll be working, and encourage them to connect with you only during set times such as over lunch or breaks.
  5. If your remote work situation is more long-term, learn to make your laptop your office. If you have freedom in the locations you work from, expand your work world to include working in different spots in your city, state, country, or even internationally. A second external monitor can also be very helpful for many remote marketers, and some also will use high-definition TVs as a second or third laptop monitor.

Embrace Remote Work & Reach New Heights

Communicating with your associates and clients online using collaboration tools such as Zoom and Slack is a fairly straightforward task in 2020, and with the COVID-19 situation that has brought more people than ever to remote work, we hope the tactics and insight we’ve shared will help you adjust and thrive.

The post Remote Communication Opportunities For B2B Marketers appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

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It’s Pie Time We Addressed Pie Charts

Pi Day, the quirky math holiday, nay, the cultural phenomenon arrives once a year on March 14. Mathematicians celebrate the beautiful oddity of a number with a seemingly infinite number of numbers. The general public eats pie. And marketers have their own pie to consider: Pie charts.

However, while mathematicians agree on the beauty of pi, and the general public agrees on the deliciousness of pie, marketers and data visualizers do not agree on the effectiveness of pie charts.

What makes this humble, out-of-the-box data visualization that we all learned about in elementary school such a divisive chart? Regardless of how you recently celebrated Pi Day, in this post we’ll honor the holiday by exploring the benefits and shortfalls of pie charts, using the most appropriate set of data to illustrate examples: favorite pie flavors.

Benefits and Shortfalls of Pie Charts

Despite the ease of creating a pie chart, they’re often not very effective at communicating data. As a rule of thumb, when you design a pie chart, keep this in mind: how easy is it to understand what the top three results are?

Benefits

Two benefits of pie charts are that they are relatively universal and that people understand the concept. You don’t need to explain to your audience how the chart should be read. They also understand that the chart should communicate that all pieces of the whole should add up to 100%.

Others claim that they are useful for comparing angles rather than area, and that when faced with a side-by-side comparison about expectation versus the result, it’s easy to see when a pie chart slice is greater than 25% or 50%.

Shortfalls

Several elements make this out-of-the-box pie chart difficult to comprehend.

This example of a pie chart is made up of 12 different sections, each representing a different favorite flavor of pie, and each slice identified with a different color. This example of a pie chart is made up of 12 different sections, each representing a different favorite flavor of pie, and each slice identified with a different color.
It’s difficult at a glance to understand which slices of the pie are the biggest.

 

For one thing, it isn’t very easy for people to distinguish between the slices of the pie chart if they are similar in size. Take the two biggest pieces of the pie – Pecan and Pumpkin. Which slice is bigger? Or comparing Dutch Apple and Key Lime, which holds the rank of third-favorite pie flavor?

This brings us to the second element: color. What do these colors mean? Are they representative of anything? Aside from missing the mark on web accessibility for colorblind users, it’s unclear what, if anything, these colors should represent.

The lack of clarity of colors and size of slice speaks to the need for labels. The slices, as well as the portion of the pie they represent, should be clearly marked. Despite the added labels, you’ll notice this chart still takes some comprehension and time to identify the top three pie flavors.

Even with lines drawn connecting each flavor of pie and it's % value, it still provides a lot of information to sift through.Even with lines drawn connecting each flavor of pie and it's % value, it still provides a lot of information to sift through.
Labels can help clarify the percentage of each slice, and indicate what each piece represents. But it’s still a lot of information to process.

Additionally, the slices of the pie should equal 100%. If you’re working with data where there is overlap and the total value is greater than 100%, a pie chart is likely not a good fit.

Finally, a pie chart can be further distorted with 2D versus 3D formatting options. The 3D option might look fancy, but it distorts the visual so that the bigger slices may look smaller, and vice versa. Stick to 2D pie charts to maximize comprehension of these charts.

In this example, creating a 3D version of the chart doesn't help the visual clutter, and in fact falsely makes some section appear to be larger than they actually are.In this example, creating a 3D version of the chart doesn't help the visual clutter, and in fact falsely makes some section appear to be larger than they actually are.
3D visuals can sometimes distort the sizes of the pie slices.

What to Use Instead of a Pie Chart

If you’re struggling to make a pie chart that is an effective representation of the information you’re trying to convey, consider this alternative to visualize data that might get your point across in a more efficient way: a sideways bar graph.

This is a common alternative to pie charts. It is a quick visual that shows the top three pie flavors at a glance, and the actual values of data, rather than being a portion of 100%.

In this example, the same information that was confusing when displayed as a pie chart is much easier to read as a sideways bar graph. The first four lines show that pumpkin and pecan are the first and second favorite flavors, while key lime and dutch apple are tied for third.In this example, the same information that was confusing when displayed as a pie chart is much easier to read as a sideways bar graph. The first four lines show that pumpkin and pecan are the first and second favorite flavors, while key lime and dutch apple are tied for third.
A sideways bar graph is a great alternative to pie charts, when you’ve got a larger set of variables with similar values.

Here, we see that Pumpkin is the frontrunner, Pecan is a close second, and that Key Lime and Dutch Apple are actually tied for third place.

If You Must Use Pie Charts

If you’re a pie chart aficionado and insist on using them, here are some tips to make them more comprehensible.

Use Labels

As we saw earlier, the addition of labels provides clarity of which values are ascribed to each slice. This takes the guesswork out of wondering about the sizes of slices.

Put The Slices in Ascending Order

Putting the pie chart in ascending/descending order removes another element of guesswork – Understanding the order of pie slices. Here, we can quickly tell that Pumpkin is the most popular pie flavor, Pecan is the second favorite pie flavor, and Dutch Apple and Key Lime are the third favorite pie flavors.

By rearranging the pie chart, the three largest sections all occur on the left, making it straightforward what the top flavors are.By rearranging the pie chart, the three largest sections all occur on the left, making it straightforward what the top flavors are.
By reorganizing the slices of the pie in ascending order, it’s much easier to see the top three values in this data set.

Remove Unnecessary Colors

The pre-prescribed colors of this pie chart add another level of potential confusion. Do the colors mean anything? Are all “fruit” pies intended to be one hue, and “chocolate/other” pies meant to be another?

If colors aren’t adding meaning to your chart, simplify it by removing them, or using an abbreviated color palette to highlight the meaningful parts. This helps support the original goal of understanding the top three pie flavors.

The same pie chart has been given a much simpler color scheme. The top three pie flavors are represented in different shades of blue, with the rest of the slices showing in gray. This immediately draws a reader's eyes to the pertinent information in this data set.The same pie chart has been given a much simpler color scheme. The top three pie flavors are represented in different shades of blue, with the rest of the slices showing in gray. This immediately draws a reader's eyes to the pertinent information in this data set.
By using a limited color scheme, attention is more easily drawn to the data that you want your audience to focus on.

 

In Other Words

Pie charts are not something to avoid altogether; however, they should be used with appropriate data. And when creating pie charts, formatting should be considered to make them easier to read, no matter how you slice it. So yes, you can have your pie chart, and use it in reporting, too.

The post It’s Pie Time We Addressed Pie Charts appeared first on Portent.

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Smooth Sailing: Our Guide to Effective Project Management for B2B Marketers

Man standing in front of blackboard with a grid of choices image.

Man standing in front of blackboard with a grid of choices image.

What does the word “work” mean to you?

A dictionary would tell you that work is, “activity involving mental or physical effort done in order to achieve a purpose or result,” or maybe, “a task or tasks to be undertaken; something a person or thing has to do.”

But how do we know which tasks to tackle first? Or what specifically needs to happen in order to achieve our purpose?

That’s where project management comes in.

And for B2B marketing agencies or teams, there are a lot of nuances when it comes to project management. Launching several campaigns at once. Racing to meet tight deadlines. Ensuring important milestones are met and in the right order. These are not your typical projects. And the typical approach to project management just won’t cut it.

What are our secrets to project management for B2B marketers? I share our top project management tips that boost marketing productivity with you below.

Tip #1: Adopt Big-Picture Thinking

Project management can either be granular or broad. Small picture, or big picture.

With a granular approach, you’re at the front lines of work on a daily basis. You’re communicating with the team several times a day to ensure due dates are being met, roadblocks are cleared, and information is shared. However, this approach eats up a lot of time. Especially when you’re juggling several projects at once — a common occurrence for B2B marketing teams.

Looking at the big picture is a much more efficient approach. Instead of digging into the details and micro-managing every task or piece of work, this approach takes a step back and instead takes a look at your projects as a whole. You’re reviewing projects for common pain points like overlapping timelines, double-booked resources, and client approvals to see where you can proactively remove obstacles and schedule work.

With a big-picture approach to project management, you’ll spend less time reacting to team needs and more time proactively mitigating bumps in the road. It’s more planning and less managing.

[bctt tweet=”“With a big-picture approach to project management, you’ll spend less time reacting to team needs and more time proactively mitigating bumps in the road. It’s more planning and less managing.” @annieleuman” username=”toprank”]

Tip #2: Implement the Right Tools

As a project manager myself, it seems as though the words “project management” and “software” are almost always mentioned in the same breath. They’re conjoined at the hip. And there’s a good reason for that.

Project management software has immeasurably helped organizations improve the way they work. Take Google Drive or Dropbox for instance. Every document your marketing team needs can be uploaded, shared, edited, and collaborated upon in a single, easy-to-access place. That is an incredible benefit to B2B marketing teams where you can work on anything from a calendar to a spreadsheet to an interactive asset at any given time.

Some of our favorite work-accelerating tools are:

  • Google Drive: file sharing and collaboration.
  • Dropbox: design file sharing and proofing.
  • Slack*: quick communication that’s organized by project, subject, or team.
  • Mavenlink: structuring projects, assigning tasks, and tracking efficiency.
  • Zoom: hosting team and client meetings.
  • LastPass: sharing access to important tools.

But before you go and install all of them, there’s an important consideration you need to make: process. Every tool needs its own set of processes to go with it telling your team when to use it, why you need it, and how to best utilize the tool. With processes in place, there is no confusion among your team as to where critical information lives. And speaking of processes…

[bctt tweet=”“Every tool needs its own set of processes to go with it telling your team when to use it, why you need it, and how to best utilize the tool.” @annieleuman” username=”toprank”]

Tip #3: Prioritize Process

Process is a love/hate relationship for many B2B marketing teams. Too much process, and creativity is stifled. Not enough process, and progress is halted.

Process is a balance.

Take a look at your own documented processes and ask yourself:

  • Which processes are necessary to complete the work?
  • Are there any processes that are no longer followed?
  • How many processes do you have for the same task?

Based on your answers, you should consolidate your processes where able, kill and reimagine the processes that are already dead, and promote the processes that are essential to survival. Good project managers will create processes with ease, but only the great ones are able to remove and improve the processes that are more of a hindrance than a help.

[bctt tweet=”“Good project managers will create processes with ease, but only the great ones are able to remove and improve the processes that are more of a hindrance than a help.” @annieleuman” username=”toprank”]

Tip #4: Be Flexible

We live in a world of constant change. Recent events have highlighted this even more so. It’s the nature of life, and it is certainly the nature of marketing.

Adapting to change requires flexibility. Project management for B2B marketing needs to be able to handle an accelerated — or decelerated — timeline, a drop in resources, or a sudden, unexpected ask from a client. While project managers will do their best to try and predict the future with grade-A planning — it is impossible to do so with 100% accuracy.

How do we handle the constant change in B2B marketing? We prioritize one week at a time. By prioritizing one week — or even one day — at a time we’re able to be much more agile and fit in the urgent requests as they come in. If we prioritized further out, we would lose the ability to change course quickly. We also have a large, varied pool of resources to ensure nothing is siloed or breaks if someone needs to take unexpected time off or is over capacity.

Let’s Get Down to Business

To focus your B2B marketing team on the work that matters, project management needs to be a priority. But in our experience, the most effective project management follows the above guidelines. It’s flexible, rooted in process, sees the big picture, and is assisted by the right tools. That’s not to say that your B2B marketing team won’t need to be managed a little bit differently, but the above tips should get you started on the right path.

Want to further optimize how your team works? View these tips for managing content marketing teams.

* Disclosure: Slack is a TopRank Marketing client.

The post Smooth Sailing: Our Guide to Effective Project Management for B2B Marketers appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

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7 Key Reasons to Use Content Marketing for Small Business

by Robert Clough

Want to make sure that your business is marketing your brand effectively? Then one way to do so is to stay ahead of the crowd.

A content marketing for small business strategy will help you to keep up with the cutting edge technology that’s available to promote your brand. This will help you to stay relevant and increase your sales. 

Are you intrigued?

Read on to discover seven reasons to use content marketing for your small business.

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Content Marketing for Small Business: Why It’s Important

Content marketing is a strategy centered on creating, publishing and distributing content to your target audience. This is done in order to attract new traffic and potential customers to your business.

It’s more than just social media or blogs, with a variety of formats, content marketing can create stronger relationships between you and your target audience. In fact, the right type of content marketing will pique their interest, strengthen engagement and boost brand recall.

Content marketing carries huge benefits that can help your small business thrive, remain relevant and capture new clients. Let’s take an in-depth look at how it can do this.

1. Earn Visitor’s Trust

Creating and sharing more content with your target audience establishes you as an expert in your field. Based on this fact people will seek you out to help them with their problems.

If you don’t have a blog its time to create one. You can post a few blogs revolving around certain keywords, twice weekly to attract visitors.

For example, if you’re a small natural hair products startup you can post content on length retention and essential oils that are great for maintaining moisture. Visitors will try these out and once they work for them, they’ll keep coming back for more and even start ordering your products.

2. Promote Brand Awareness

As a small business, it’s likely that a lot of people don’t know about your brand but that’s where content marketing changes things.

When used properly content marketing can greatly increase your website traffic and make it consistent. It can also provide inbound links to your site. 

3. Build Business Leads

Building leads is key to your content marketing. You need to attract potential clients on a regular basis who’ll develop an interest in what you’re offering and buy it. Content marketing is the ideal way to reach them.

Content marketing is great because it uses your insightful and useful content to bring new visitors to your site. Often times, these visitors may not even be looking specifically for what you are selling but they want information on something related to your product.

They may read your content, check out your product and buy.

4. Capture Your Ideal Buyer

Sometimes, leads can be disappointing, they don’t always translate into customers. You need to work on attracting your ideal buyer. Content marketing allows only those genuinely interested in what you’re offering to view it.

People interested in your field will search and be led to your website or blog. Then only those whose interest is heightened will head to your landing page. From those who make it to your landing page, only those who are genuinely intrigued will complete a form with their personal details in order to get more information.

5. Get Visitors to Share Your Content on Social Media

As an expert in your field, you know more than the average person. Sometimes even other businesses will want to share your content.

This is especially true if it solves a common issue in an unusual way or disseminates crucial information. Aim then to share useful content that people will not only read but be eager to share. The more exposure you get, the better. Your post might even end up trending.

6. Summon People to Revisit Your Site

By providing people with useful and informative content you’re now forming a budding relationship with them. You now start to become a trusted expert and resource for your audience. They develop trust in you and as such return to your website.

This creates a lot of engagement which is important for content marketing, so aiming to form a community that is centered around your content is important.

7. Boost Brand Authority

When your content sets you apart from the rest you’re providing answers to your audience’s questions and concerns. They now start to trust that they can rely on you to give them the best solutions to their problems.

Continue posting credible, informative and useful content as this strengthens and reiterates your role as an industry expert. With your role as an expert established, people will be more interested in purchasing your products compared to your competitors. The ultimate result is that your brand authority will be boosted.

8. Making Content Marketing Work for You

It’s more frequent to hear of larger brands producing great content than small businesses. You might even see people citing them as examples of content marketing done right.

However, don’t be intimidated, you can see a positive return on investment (ROI) by using content marketing. You don’t need to invest as much money as big businesses.

In fact, many customers prefer to learn about your business in an article compared to an advertisement, so do what you can with what you have and you will see results. Content marketing does more than just put your name out there, it helps you to remain relevant and ahead of the game.

The GameChanger

Content marketing for small business can definitely be described as a game-changer. Its varied formats provide a greater reach for brand promotion.

With it you have the opportunity to welcome traffic to your website, boost brand awareness and establish brand authority. In addition, you generate leads, taps into your ideal buyer’s market and even get visitors to share your content thus causing more traction for your business.

Content marketing puts you ahead of the pack permanently. If you would like more information on content marketing, please visit the search engine marketing section of the website.

Be sure and visit our small business news site.

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Should COVID-19 Stop B2B Marketers From Marketing?

COVID-19 B2B Marketing

COVID-19 B2B Marketing

You’ve read the news, seen the reports, remarkable real-time graphs and updates from the CDC. Virtually all industry conferences are cancelled or postponed, major sporting events are postponed, most schools and many stores are closed and just about any venue for large crowds from malls to theatres are as empty as the toilet paper aisle at Target.

COVID-19 is serious business and is undoubtedly having an impact on business. Should it stop companies from marketing to other businesses?

We all have an obligation to make the changes necessary to minimize COVID-19 transmission through closures, postponements and having employees work from home like we just implemented at TopRank Marketing this week along with many other companies.

While there will be a period of adjustment, these changes do not mean the work stops. It doesn’t mean companies don’t need information, solutions, support, products and services. The evolving environment we find ourselves in presents new challenges and opportunities to be even more relevant and useful for clients.

While some companies may be distracted or paused in some of their efforts to find solutions, that only means marketing needs to do a better job of providing best answer content in formats that are relevant in the new environment: virtual events, video conferencing, podcasts, webinars, interactive content, recorded video, live streaming and other forms of online engagement. Virtual reality or direct mail are considerations as well.

During this time of transition, it’s also important that marketers review their planned advertising, social and marketing messages to be appropriate to what customers are dealing with right now. Publishing marketing messages as if everything is normal will not resonate or be useful.

Additionally, opportunities may reveal themselves either through data or consumer behavior, like the efforts to encourage gift card purchases from local businesses that will lose foot traffic. A few additional tips for B2B marketers include:

  • Stay in close contact with your customers. Learn what you can do to better support them, anticipate changes and offer resources.
  • Make sure your brand digital channels are up to date including website, blog, social network profiles, and Google My Business listings.
  • Commit to video – convert marketing message activities to video and if you have live video access on LinkedIn for execs or your brand – start using it now.
  • Optimize your digital channels: Refresh SEO, social, online advertising and influencer efforts. Identify what is working and reallocate resources and budget as appropriate.
  • Reinforce efforts and communications to support community, employees and customers affected through supply of resources, technology or expertise.

Marketers focused on being the best answer for their customers are agile and understand the importance of being responsive to changes, even as large as the Coronavirus pandemic. Being responsible to the health and safety of employees, customers and community should be the top priority while also understanding that the need for information and solutions might slow or change but not stop. We still need to do our jobs and provide useful information, we just need to do it differently.

 

The post Should COVID-19 Stop B2B Marketers From Marketing? appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

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Facebook Trends: 3 Big Reasons to Use Facebook for Advertising in 2020

by Robert Clough

 Business owners and entrepreneurs spent over $25 billion on Facebook advertising last year. Most tech-savvy business owners understand that social media is a great lead generation tool. If you are getting limited results from your existing marketing strategy, it is time to mix some things up.

If you are not engaging with consumers via Facebook advertising, you need to change that. Following Facebook trends, is a great way to generate a buzz about the products/services you offer.

Are you looking for more information about the benefits of using Facebook for advertising? If so, check out the information below.

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1. An Affordable Way to Market Your Business

One of the first things business owners want to know about a new form of marketing or advertising is how much it costs. Failing to set a marketing budget can come back to haunt you in the long run. You will be happy to hear that advertising your business on Facebook is not only effective, it is also very affordable.

The Facebook Ads user interface allows you to set a budget for this marketing campaign. Once your monthly allowance is reached, Facebook will simply stop showing your ad.

Being able to set and forget this type of marketing is very beneficial. As you start to see the fruits of your Facebook advertising labor materialize, you need to increase your budget. Striking while the iron is hot can help you land more leads and increase your bottom line substantially.

2. Targeting Specific Users is Essential

Using data and analytics to improve your marketing strategy is a must for modern business owners. When investing in Facebook Ads, you will be able to target specific users. Facebook provides you with information about a user’s age, location, marital status and a host of other facts.

Using this information allows you to tailor your Facebook advertising campaigns to appeal to your audience. Trying to market your services to every person on Facebook is wasteful. Being more specific with your intent can help you garner better results with this type of marketing.

Rather than trying to handle the development and implementing of these campaigns on your own, you need to hire an experienced advertising agency. With this professional help, you can increase the effectiveness of your Facebook advertising campaigns.

3. Take Advantage of Custom Ad Buttons

Knowing what type of ads you want to use to reach customers on Facebook is important. If you are going to be using text ads to inform Facebook users about your products/services, then taking advantage of the custom ad buttons provided by Facebook is important.

These buttons can be linked to landing pages on your website. Driving more traffic to your business website can also help you increase sales.

Following Facebook Trends is Important

Now that you know more about Facebook trends, it is time to get to work. Allowing professionals to help you set up a Facebook Ads account is beneficial.

Looking for more information about social media marketing? If so, check out more of the blogs on our website.

Be sure and visit our small business news site.

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How to Get Popular on Youtube: 7 Tactics to Help Increase Your Views

by Robert Clough

YouTube has 2 billion active users who publish 500 hours of content a minute. 

How to get popular on YouTube starts with understanding how big the pool of competition and viewers is. People from all over the world use YouTube as a primary means of watching video media. 

imayoutuber.jpg

How to Get Popular on YouTube

With such a vast user base, YouTube can be intimidating for new creators. Getting noticed on YouTube depends on employing a correct strategy. Here we will present our list of tactics you can use to fulfill the dream of how to get popular on YouTube. 

1. Create Engaging, Entertaining Content

The real cornerstone of what makes a Youtuber popular is by creating good content. Your content should be informative, engaging and above all else entertaining. YouTube has replaced television for a lot of people, so everything from documentaries to joke videos are popular. 

2. Use Viral Trends as a Guide

Viral trends come and go and many of them are remembered. If you make videos that feature viral trends, you will draw in viewers. So many people are searching for the latest viral trend that it is easy to collect subscriptions and views and a cornerstone of how to become famous on YouTube fast. 

3. Use High-Quality Cameras and Editing 

One of the best ways to learn how to make YouTube videos is by watching tutorials and having good equipment. Voice and picture quality are of paramount importance on YouTube. Having good equipment will give you the video quality to stand out in the pack. 

4. Track Your Analytics

Keep track of what videos perform well and which ones do not. Your analytics may not always show the exact number of views your videos have. Many wonder, how often does YouTube update views? The answer is every 24 to 48 hours. Focus on high performing content in order to maximize impact.

5. Develop a Community 

Great YouTube creators have a passionate fan base and community. It is more than just about how to check your YouTube comments. Having a voice and acknowledging your community is very important. The more interactive you are, the more your community will grow in scope and passion. 

6. Build a Brand 

Having a successful YouTube channel gets you access to a great brand-building platform. You can use this to customize merchandise and marketing to your viewers. One great way to set yourself apart is to create your own YouTube logo. 

Another useful tool in doing this is learning how to get a YouTube link that is unique to your channel. 

7. Feature Other YouTube Content Creators

Feature videos and appearances by other YouTube creators. This will draw in the viewers of those YouTubers onto your channel. It will also benefit them by allowing your viewers to see a content creator that you enjoy as well. 

YouTube Popularity 

There isn’t a single way to answer the question of how to get popular on YouTube. Put in time and dedication and your channel will grow over time. Success on YouTube can seem like an uphill struggle but you will be rewarded if you continue to follow your passion and build your channel. 

We hope this article was helpful in providing ways to boost your popularity on YouTube. Before you go, take a moment to browse our site for other related topics.

Be sure and visit our small business news site.

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Digital Marketing News: B2B Purpose & Brand Awareness Studies, Twitter Tests Fleets, Gen Z Turns to Influencers, & Apple’s New Push Ads

2020 March 13 MarketingCharts Chart

2020 March 13 MarketingCharts Chart

B2B Companies See Purpose As A Path to Success
Some 82 percent of B2B executives see companies with purpose having more success than those without, with 86 percent saying that purpose is important to their business — two of the insights contained in a recently-released B2B brand purpose survey. MarketingCharts

Content Consumption and Production Trends for B2B Marketers
Creating brand awareness, educating audiences, and building credibility and trust are the three top B2B content marketing goals, according to a new report on content consumption and production trends. Blog posts, customer testimonials and reviews, and whitepapers were the most effective methods for moving prospects along the sales funnel, the report revealed. Chief Marketer

Twitter starts testing its own version of Stories, called ‘Fleets,’ which disappear after 24 hours
Twitter has begun testing its take on Story-format tweets, which it has dubbed “fleets” for the fleeting ephemeral element. If rolled out to the platform’s full user-base, fleets could provide new options for marketers. TechCrunch

Gen Z relies on influencers for purchase decisions, Kantar says
People in the Gen Z demographic place the most weight on influencers when it comes to making purchasing decisions, with 44 percent buying based on a social influencer’s recommendation — notably higher than the 26 percent of the general population, according to a recently-released consumer study. Mobile Marketer

Reddit Launches Prominent New ‘Trending Takeover’ Ad Units
Social news aggregator and discussion platform Reddit has rolled out its most visible advertising format to date, with “Trending Takeover” 24-hour campaigns that offer prime exposure, offering a new option for marketers, while some of the firm’s users predict a Redditor backlash. Social Media Today

Gen Z’s Favorite Social-Media Platform? None Of The Above
Despite using social media more than any other demographic, Gen Z is most at home not on traditional mainstream platforms but on gaming platforms. With 90 percent of the demographic being gamers, gaming platforms serve roles similar to those social media does for the general population, according to a newly-released Kantar study of interest to digital marketers. MediaPost

2020 March 13 Statistics Image

Apple now allows push notification advertising, updates dating app review guidelines and more
Apple has made changes that allow app publishers to send push notification ads and promotional content to users who choose to opt-in, a move that has given marketers their first opportunity to utilize push-based ads to users of Apple’s iPhone and iPad devices, the firm recently announced. 9 to 5 Mac

Majority of consumers want standards and tougher action against review fraud
Most consumers say that they would like to see more done to combat fake reviews, including new industry standards to fight online review fraud, according to newly-released survey data which also shows that 82 percent won’t buy from a brand they’ve lost trust in. Marketing Land

YouTube Analytics Now Lets Creators Compare Metrics Side-by-Side
Google’s YouTube has unveiled a slew of new analytics features aimed at providing easier side-by-side metrics comparisons, including timelines that can show views alongside comments and other details, the search and video giant recently announced. Search Engine Journal

ANA Finds Serious Problem: Marketing Students Just Wanna Have Fun
New entrants into the advertising industry are less likely to lean towards the quantitative and analytical side of marketing and more likely to embrace its creative and fun areas, according to newly-released survey data from the Association of National Advertisers ANA Education Foundation (AEF). MediaPost

ON THE LIGHTER SIDE:

2020 March 13 Marketoonist Comic

A lighthearted look at managing uncertainty by Marketoonist Tom Fishburne — Marketoonist

Twitch streamers make thousands by literally just sleeping — Ars Technica

TOPRANK MARKETING & CLIENTS IN THE NEWS:

  • Lee Odden — Building trust with influencers and buyers: Influencer marketing in 2020 with Lee Odden — Ai Addyson-Zhang
  • Lee Odden — Bra att veta om B2B influencer marketing 2020 (infograf) [In Swedish] — Pontus Staunstrup

Do you have your own top B2B content marketing or digital advertising stories from the past week? Please let us know in the comments below.

Thank you for joining us, and we hope that you’ll come back again next Friday for a new array of the most relevant B2B and digital marketing industry news. In the meantime, you can follow us at @toprank on Twitter for even more timely daily news. Also, don’t miss the full video summary on our TopRank Marketing TV YouTube Channel.

The post Digital Marketing News: B2B Purpose & Brand Awareness Studies, Twitter Tests Fleets, Gen Z Turns to Influencers, & Apple’s New Push Ads appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

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How to Use Responsive Display Ads for Remarketing at No Cost

Display remarketing is a very powerful marketing tool that nearly all businesses should utilize. Remarketing (or retargeting) is a method to reconnect with users who have visited your website in the past. These users are brand aware and have shown a very high level of intent by visiting your site, so they are often the ideal audience to be targeting. On top of that, the cost of remarketing is often low, making it a fantastic value for the return delivered.

There are many different ways to remarket to users, but for this post, we are going to focus on remarketing via Google and the Google Display Network. First, we’ll cover how to jump into Google display remarketing, and then how to use responsive display ads.

How to Get Started With Google Display Remarketing

To get started with standard display remarketing, you need to have a few things set up first.

Audiences

Most notably, you need audiences to remarket to. You can build audiences either directly in Google Ads or Google Analytics:

Screenshot of where to create audience lists in Google AdsScreenshot of where to create audience lists in Google Ads
Where to build audience lists in Google Ads
Screenshot of where to create audience lists in Google AnalyticsScreenshot of where to create audience lists in Google Analytics
Where to build audience lists in Google Analytics

When building audiences, think about your site’s overall traffic. Audiences must have about 1,000 users on them before Google makes them eligible to target with ads, to prevent microtargeting individuals. You will want to build audiences that you expect will have at least that many users per month. Check out this post on building audiences; it has some great ideas to help you get started.

Campaigns

Once you have audiences built, you can use them to target your Google Ads campaigns:

Screenshot of a list of audiences being used in a display campaign in Google AdsScreenshot of a list of audiences being used in a display campaign in Google Ads

Your ads will be managed directly in the Google Ads interface via campaigns. Display remarketing is unique compared to other types of display advertising or search. They need their own space so you can optimize and spend effectively. I highly suggest that you manage all your display remarketing efforts in their own campaign dedicated to this strategy.

Screenshot showing how to set up a dedicated display campaign in Google AdsScreenshot showing how to set up a dedicated display campaign in Google Ads

Creative

Lastly, you need to have ads to show! Historically, the biggest barrier to entry with this type of advertising has been creative. Display remarketing is most effective when using banner images, and producing quality banners requires a designer.

That is no longer the case, though, with responsive display ads. In the past, effective ads required static display JPEGs or PNGs. With responsive display ads, Google has made creating banners free and easy, helping you get started at no cost. In fact, responsive display ads often outperform custom display banners.

What Are Responsive Display Ads?

This ad format is just like the name suggests. All you need to do is provide assets, and Google will automatically format your ads for you to fit the many different ad specifications they offer. This means increased reach and much less time and resources to create effective ads.

This help article from Google explains in great detail what is needed to create these types of ads. But the summary is, all you need is some text for a headline, text for a description, and some raw image assets. At its simplest, that’s it, and Google handles the rest.

Screenshot of a collection of responsive display ads from Google Ads that have been adapted for a variety of display optionsScreenshot of a collection of responsive display ads from Google Ads that have been adapted for a variety of display options
These responsive display ads from Oiselle automatically adapt to a variety of ad sizes.

And again, this is free. Even from a time perspective, it is incredibly quick, so there really is no excuse not to give a try.

What to Expect

As previously mentioned, remarketing, in general, is a powerful tool. You should expect to reach a highly qualified audience who is brand aware and low in the funnel fairly often with this strategy compared to other advertising tactics. Overall, advertisers should expect:

  • High user intent
  • Low costs from a cost per click perspective
  • Great reach (because responsive ads fit all potential placements, which means more ad inventory!)
  • Low start-up costs
  • Simple optimization and maintenance

Our Recommendation

Give these ads a try. They are free to create and, in our experience, very effective. Remarketing as a strategy fits well with most businesses, and responsive display ads make display remarketing on Google more attainable than ever.

The post How to Use Responsive Display Ads for Remarketing at No Cost appeared first on Portent.

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