Tag Archive for web marketing

Conversion Conference London Keynotes

Conversion Conference

Conversion Conference 2012 has kicked things up a gear with the announcement of two amazing keynote speakers.  Running during Data Driven Business Week, Conversion Conference is focused on acceleration of online competitiveness through best practices, smarter adoption of web analytics and discovering better methods and technologies to provide detailed insights into your customers. Some of the other amazing conferences running that week include eMetrics Marketing Optimisation Summit and Predictive Analytics World.

Prof. Wolfgang HenselerThe opening keynote is run by Professor Wolfgang Henseler of Sensory-Minds who is a recognised expert of natural user interface design, usability and user experience.  He is also a consultant to Google & Microsoft on what you will see in the next generation of interface designs.  His keynote will examine challenges the role of applications in multi-touch computing and future dimensions in user experience.

Matthew Finlay, CEO of Rising Media responded about the keynote announcement “Professor Henseler is a global expert on customer and user-oriented e-business solutions as well as a user and brand experience specialist. He is creating the blueprint for the next generation of websites and as a result is in demand by global enterprises for his expertise in human-computer design.

also adding that

We are thrilled to have Professor Henseler open this year’s conference in what promises to be a very thought provoking keynote presentation.

Nick HolzherrThe second keynote is being presented by Nick Holzherr of Whisk who has built a service to simplify the buying process for customers by converting recipes automatically into shopping lists within online supermarkets.

Matthew Finlay, CEO of Rising Media was quoted saying that “Nick is one of the UK’s most innovative young entrepreneurs and his new venture Whisk is set to change the way people do their food shopping online. The foundation for Whisk’s success lies the company’s focus on strategic conversion and delegates will see how this is being implemented in this exciting new business.

Nathalie NahaiA final speaker Nathahlie Nahai of Web Psychologist has been added as a keynote speaker for Conversion Conference London.  Nathahlie is an award-winning speaker with a background in digital strategy and psychology and one of the leading voices in her frield to have both academic and hands-on experience in online persuasion.  Nathahlie is also a member of #OglivyChange that utilisies cognitive psychology, social psychology and behavioural economics to produce behaviour interventions in real life.

Conversion Conference 2012 Pass Options

  • Two Day Conversion Conference Pass (Access to Conversion Conference sessions and Expo Hall on 27th November AND 28th November)
  • One Day Conversion Conference Pass (Access to Conversion Conference sessions and Expo Hall on 27th November OR 28th November)
  • Combo Pass eMetrics (Access to Conversion Conference & eMetrics sessions + Expo Hall)
  • Super Combo Pass (Access to eMetrics, Conversion Conference AND Predictive Analytics World sessions + Expo Hall)
  • Exhibit Hall Only Pass (Access to Exhibition Hall Only – no conference sessions)

Conference Discount & Registration

Book early for London 2012 and save with our 15% Discount Code LOSTAGENCY12  and register for conference here
Conversion Conference Venue

Business Design Centre, Islington 52 Upper Street, London N1 0QH, United Kingdom Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7359 3535 Conversion Conference Social Media Links Follow them on twitter @ConvCon, and track the 2012 conversation with hashtag #ConvCon

Bonobos fails Facebook Father’s day promotion

Bonobos LogoSorry to say for those who live in Argentina, Canada, United States, United Kingdom, Chile, France, Japan or the Netherlands, but your Father’s day was last weekend the 20th June. The reason for the confusion is that some advertisers may not have noticed or are trying to wring every last drop of value of the event.  It is fairly common to see campaigns that run past their due date over long holidays such as Christmas but it is not acceptable for business to continue to be so lazy.

Some advertisers or marketers may argue that there is a spill over after big events and they can capture this traffic now much cheaper because there is no competition.  While this is a fair argument for events like Mayday Sales, Black Friday or Boxing Day sales, you can see from the Google search trends data below that it’s almost zero.  So paying to expose your brand to zero search traffic usually means zero sales but if you have statistics please tell me I’m wrong!

Father's Day Search TrendsAfter 21st June there is almost zero web search interest in Father’s Day

I have updated the campaign tracking code to remind whoever is looking at the Google Analytics data that it’s no longer Father’s Day so feel free to click the image below to ensure there is enough traffic captured in the analytics reports. The new campaign they will be tracking from this page is “Not Fathers Day” which should set off some alarm bells if anyone is running their campaigns and actually checking the data.

Bonobos Facebook Ad

Please click the image above

While its wonderful to see a company like Bonobos running Facebook ads and also using Google Analytics campaign tagging on the URLs the issue is why wasn’t the extra step taken to ensure the campaign would stop running on Monday the 21st June? It can happen that not all the campaign budget is spent so agencies continue the campaign at the request of the client or on their on behalf but if they took just 30 seconds to add in a new creative I wouldn’t be writing this blog post.

Google AdWords

Just a note that this is not specific to Bonobos or Facebook, a simple search on Google for “Father’s Day” showed a number of ads for campaigns targeting the event.  It is possible that some of these domains might be still running on Google Grant money but they still should be ensuring they are getting value for their clicks and donations for their organisations.  It would be smarter to run a new campaign “Forget Father’s Day?” you can still make it up to him with a donation!

Google Father's Day Ads

Disclosure: Facebook and Google offer a feature to stop campaigns on a certain date as shown below

Facebook Ads Campaign Settings

Facebook Ads Calendar

Adwords Campaign Management Settings

Google Ads Calendar

Time Required: 30-45 seconds estimated including login time

So this is a reminder that it’s not really that hard to set up a campaign to run leading up to a specific event or day, but its even easier to stop that running once the day has passed and you won’t waste your money communicating to your audience that you are out of touch and don’t know what day of the week it is….

My Coke fails to reward sponsors

my coke rewards logoCoke is one of the best advertisers in the world partly because of the strength of their brand but also because of the amount of money they pour into some of their advertising campaigns.  But this is not one of those cases in respect to the digital webdesign budget as it seems some basic elements were ignored in their current MyCoke Rewards promotions which they are also using AdWords to buy traffic to increase its audience, but are their promotional partners getting a full benefit?
my coke rewards
You are not eligible, please leave!
So while its not obvious until the second question, but when you select to register on the page now titled “Registration Eligibility” you are asked if you are a US resident.  While this might be due to legal rules/regulations the problem is that a portion of the US population may not be residents but could still be  suitable for the promotional partners just not the competition.  If you elect the option to say not you are presented with a useless single line of text “we’re sorry… you’re not eligible to join My Coke Rewards.” shown in the screenshot below.
They could have easily re-enforced how unwelcome these visitors were, by adding a click here to close the browser window link…
Why not offer everyone something?
The problem with paying for traffic is that you are also paying to attract audience members who may not be eligible or suitable for your product/service so you need to consider how to best deal with that traffic and the above message is a massive fail on My Coke Rewards part.  It took me maybe 5-10 mins by looking at the Coke Rewards partners hidden down at the bottom of the page to generate some basic ideas of the types of promotional messages My Coke Rewards could have easily added to the not eligible to join page shown below. The message about why they are not able to join is re-enforced but does offer those who cannot sign up something, so both the visitor gets benefit and the promotional partners get more exposure for being part of the program.
my coke rewards sponsors
Suggested Coke partner promotional offers
The following advertising messages are based on their own current summer deals/offers available to anyone who visits their website but are slightly tweaked to be more suitable to My Coke Rewards.
  • Delta Special Fare Sales – See more of the world for less
  • Six Flags More Flags More Fun – Have more fun with a season pass
  • Nike Free Run – freedom for your feet during summer
  • Holiday Inn Hit it big – earn doulbe points all summer long
  • Blockbuster Movies delivered – try it free this summer
You can see that this type of message both offers those who are not eligible for My Coke Rewards and advertisers who are paying to be associated with the promotional campaign, and only takes a matter of minutes to be setup. Advertisers get more exposure and are more likely to support the promotion as they can benefit from those who are a suitable audience for them to market to but might not be suitable for the My Coke Rewards promotion.
Failure to survey visitors
Another point is that Coke is now offering visitors a chance to provide feedback on the website, but ends up giving you a 15 min survey seriously if you want users to provide feedback make it quick and easy.  I really wanted to provide feedback but didn’t want to leave demographic details, product consumption details and a blood sample, so if someone is really looking to provide feedback on the site to make it better and not have the survey turn into a marketing study you really need to look at something like Kampyle.

Campaign optimisation tips for Christmas

Leading up to Christmas can often mean a downturn in visitors to many business websites as companies wind down marketing and employees spend more time on eBay and Amazon than working. If you have noticed a drop in clicks it might be the time to examine how the content placement can compliment your existing campaigns.

The benefit of a content placement campaign is that you can reach many of these sites of interest visited by bored employees and can be very cost effective compared to traditional search campaigns. It might be also an idea to examine how a specific holiday campaign landing page can drive that extra boost in business leads and sales. Just because your competitors have wound down their marketing and given for 2009, there is no reason you should follow. If business has slowed down, we suggest setup a specific holiday campaign and landing page offering discounts for 2010 that are purchased before 31st December 2009.

The typical Christmas downturn also presents a massive opportunity for savvy business to use this time to review their existing campaigns with a more in-depth online marketing audit, we offer hourly web marekting support packages for specific online marketing assistance. Ensure that your campaign is up to date and covers any services you plan to introduce in 2010 and examine if you can add conversion tracking to get better campaign ROI. Starting your 2010 campaigns refreshed and organised can mean next year will ensure that you start ahead of your competition and ready!

WalMart fails to understand online marketing

From several previous posts we have discovered that a majority of traditional retailers don’t place as much effort into their online strategy as they do their shades of colour used on the logos or even the material used for corporate furniture….

While a majority of the Toys R Us web properties fail to follow the basics around search optimisation, they still rank #1 or #2 for many of the high volume terms because they have an effective and established backlinks.  But with some on site optimsiation it is possible that they can further increase their online sales from their current position. This will also help them expand their reach to the profitable and higher converting long tail search terms that their competitors currently capture. They appear to be well ahead of Walmart.com in the market to capture a bulk of the profitable online toy market.
Website Traffic
Even the more established online sites Toys.com and eToys capture significantly less traffic according to compete.com site analytics. The site analytics figures show that even though ToysRUs.com is a niche retailer it still attracts a significant amount of website visitors.
Walmart.com (51.8 million)
Toysrus.com (18.7 million)
Amazon.com (76.4 million)
What is interesting is that Walmart traffic grew 52% less than the 78% growth for Toys R Us leading upto the Xmas period.  Amazon showed far less of a spike with around 8% growth but matched the other 2 websites for yearly growth rates according to compete.com.
Keyword Ranking?

So how does eToys managed rank #2 for the search term “toys” when Walmart struggles to rank #5. The basic analysis revolves around eToys is a keyword friendly domain and has always been associated with toys.  This combined with around 20,000 links from 2,500 domains

vastly out performs Walmart.com/toys which has 57,000 links but from only 80 domains. Domain diversity is an issue and Walmart’s backlink strategy is leaning closer to spam and failing to give it the extra online sales.
So how does Walmart rank for its key terms and products it seems to indicate are key areas of business or has plans to capture more market share. It doesn’t appear that they have made an effort to improve what toys are the hot/popular from Christmas 2008 which is not the best start.
Walmart.com Keyword Rankings in Google.com (Top 100)
Toys #5
Games #N/A
High School Musical  #N/A
Disney #N/A
Iron Man #N/A
Elmo #70
Star Wars #N/A
Batman #N/A
Barbie #N/A
Lego #N/A
More #N/A
Action Figures #24
Bikes #7
Scooters #21
Skates #11
Building Sets #N/A
Dolls #N/A
Stuffed Toys #N/A
Games #N/A
Kids Electronics #3
Learning Toys #12
Music Instruments #N/A
Karaoke #N/A
Outdoor Play #3
Preschool Toys #3
Riding Toys #2
Radio Control Vehicles #53
Video Games #27
Gift Finder #19
We did not include universal search results that showed Google Product listings for some searches such as Scooters, only actual organic results for Walmart.com.  The biggest problem is that based on our own clients data you need to be first page of the search results at 92-94% of clicks occur here and do not goto the second page, combined with expanded universal search results it is key to be in the top 3 results to be successful. There is so many gaps in their products that don’t even feature in the top 100 which I thought would be impossible for a website like Walmart.com which shows there are major issues with their online marketing strategy.
Meta Tags
It also seems that Walmart still seems to follow some basic points to guide the search engines such as Meta description or Meta Keywords and leaves this marketing message to algorithms. It is not always best to leave your advertising message to a robot to self generate based on its estimates on what would encourage people to click.
Canonical Tag
But a guiding point is that they are using Canonical tags to reduce duplicate content and give Google/Bing the hint of what page they wanted showed in the SERPs. http://www.walmart.com/toys
The canonical choice of URL does show some hope for WalMart at a top level but they seem to fail around most other factors such as relevant title tags, and even SEO friendly URLs within the store.  These failures combined with overuse of onsite ads, too many images, too much flash and poor page loading times affect website usability.
Site Navigation fails consistency
I would rate this is a poor navigational URL for a website and one that could easily lead to broken links
Product URL fails to rank well
How could what product or item this URL is for? http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=11018843
It doesn’t make sense to the user and would i be likely to share or bookmark this link? Once again Toysrus.com ranks higher at #3 for the search term “DC Universe Batman figures” but below Amazon.com #2 which shows that there is something wrong with the online marketing by Walmart.com
Google Insights
Using Google Insights for Search Toys R Us has around 10 times the amount of branded search traffic that Walmart Toys does.  Combined with owning 3 of the top online domains: Toyrus,eToys,Toys gives them a massive lead over Walmart. Using the basic calculation of a #1 & #2 result for Toys R Us website this gives them an estimated of around 53% of clicks from searchers seeking toys in the US market.
SEO Factors such as Domain Age?
Looking at some key search ranking factors for Walmart.com and it appears to be around 2 years older than the eToys.com domain so we can say that in this case domain age is less of a factor. Also it seems that Walmart.com’s competitors such as Toys R Us fail to take onsite optimisation as seriously which leaves link strategy as the only differentiator between the two companies.
Walmart Domain Strategy
Walmart continues to buy back domains which it didn’t secure early in the dot.com days, but is it making effective use of these domains as part of an overall strategy.  The only domain that is partly setup correctly is “wal-mart.com” which has a 302 redirect to its primary Walmart.com domain. It would appear that they wish to have these other domains show within the search results, and they are likely causing issues such as duplicate content and maybe marked as spammers due to how the search engines are treating the domains.
  • wallmart.com (200)
  • wal-mart.com (302)
  • Retaillink.at (200)
  • Wallmartphoto.com (200)

So based on our initial analysis their appears to be several key areas where Walmart fail to be the 800 pound gorilla of the online retail world and may just need to sit back eat some humble pie and consider its strategy with some more thought.  Only digital strategy takes more planning and requires a site wide view that matches with several elements of your online marketing and some companies still need work.

AT&T video fails at Social Media

attWhile many companies seem to be understanding how social media works and they are slowly getting better at tracking consumer sentiment and complaints they still seem to fail at responding.  Following someone’s bad advice as to how to best respond to the increasing negative feelings within social media and mainstream media, AT&T produced a “Im a PC” style video.

The canned response from AT&T is a PR polished video combining flashy graphics, friendly images and some random guy named Seth the blogger talking about how everything is not really that bad as supported by the random graphs shown in the background.  The video also highlights that AT&T is to be credited for enabling the smartphone revolution over the past few years with no supportive facts or recognition of the other network providers.

The first point which Seth the blogger helps explain is that the issues around their current network issues are in fact based on you and 300% the growth in wireless usage each year.  Considering falling revenue from other segments of the market would the best way to explain your failing network to provide quality service on customers using it? Is it better than consumers are not using your network?

Each time you use data on your mobile phone plan over your allocated data rate you pay your phone company its a simple enough concept.  Looking on a AT&T business rates plans this shows that excess data usage is charged at $0.0048/kb or $5.12/mb which makes for a very profitable business, not something to complain about.

The process where AT&T begin to try and repair their reputation involves first explaining the complexities behind the issue of bandwidth and how more complex it is to deal with MMS.  This is another area where they fail down as typically the early adopters who are also the ones making the most complaints have a good grasp around the technology and don’t need a “Dummies guide to mobiles” video. If you are trying to reach your audience using social media you need to tailor your message to your audience, and this is another area where AT&T fail.

The point about this ground breaking technology is that MMS is not a new feature on mobile phones and has been available on GSM/GPRS since MMS was first introduced by Telenor of Norway in March 2002.  This was followed by Optus introduced MMS into Australia in July 2002, and mm02 launch in europe in October 2002, so why the big issue for a large telecommunication company like AT&T?

As Gizmodo points out the failure of the MMS is likely due to AT&T Opt-Out codes automatically enabled on all their subscribers accounts, so if this is in fact an internal issue why build a smoke screen around the issue that they need to do more?

So the points to learn from this social media failure is if your are responding to your complaints

  • match your message to your audience
  • don’t include useless images/graphics
  • support your statements with facts
  • don’t treat your audience as idiots
  • use high profile executives not characters such as “Seth the blogger”
  • don’t spend more money on the video than your customer service
  • update your website to include new product information you refer to “MMS”

Facebook fan pages overwhelm business

While much of the recent DOS attacks on Twitter have also affected Facebook & Google, it is evident that the Facebook platform is much more stable and suitable for business.  As Brand Republic highlighted it is actually Corporate America who seems to be leading the charge online reaching out through social media to consumers through corporate fan pages & facebook applications.

The Facebook platform has the advantage of scale with 250,000,000 users and 340,000,000 unique visitors each month and is now the 4th most visited website in the world.  Some mega brands like Starbucks have fit well within the Facebook platform with a massive 3,765,562 fans.

Nick Burcher has a great list of top 30 largest Facebook fan pages by number of fans, which was updated in June.  Based on the growth rate of Facebook these figures reported are slightly lower but still quite close and useful to understand the current leaders.  The only major shift is the rise in Michael Jackson fan pages since Nick updated his list.

Coca-Cola – 3,578,889 fans

Starbucks – 3,765,562 fans

Pringles – 2,765,695 fans

So who is the most popular brand or item? It is Pizza which has 3 of the top 30 largest Facebook fan bases with combined audience of 10,433,262, but the Pizza Hut group has only 993,815 fans. It would make sense for one of the big pizza chains to buy or sponsor one of these 3 fan pages if they want to reach scale quickly.

According to insidefacebook.com who provide a breakdown of page leaders, it clearly shows that the average number of fans per page is close to the average number of 2,104. This average figure is still far ahead of many corporate and business fan pages so can be a useful target to measure your social media campaign against.

Retail – Total fans in this category: 11,548,515 :: Avg fans per page in this category: 2,093
Actor – Total fans in this category: 193,520,303 :: Avg fans per page in this category: 10,865
Celebrity – Total fans in this category: 1,069,732 :: Avg fans per page in this category: 6,148
Food & Beverage – Total fans in this category: 261,930,703 :: Avg fans per page in this category: 11,478
Musician – Total fans in this category: 449,238,627 :: Avg fans per page in this category: 2,116
Automotive – Total fans in this category: 14,000,613 :: Avg fans per page in this category: 1,979
Consumer Product – Total fans in this category: 39,162,949 :: Avg fans per page in this category: 3,664

Nick from AllFacebook has analysed a large amount of Facebook fan statistics and the most frequent number of fans is only 7, with around 61,400 pages with no fans. There is a 40% change of your page attracting more than 100 fans, but this is reduced to a 9.5% change of more than 1,000 fans.  Only 5% of pages actually have more than 3,000 fans and only 2.5% actually have over 10,000 fans.  But compared to twitter where only 14 have over 1 million fans, there are 237 facebook pages who have reached this figure.

Advertisers can benefit from Facebooks powerful ad platform to target the right audience which Pringles has been doing recently to attract more followers to its fan page. The only issue is that sometimes the Facebook platform can become too open, with Primark staff insulting their customers. This open stream has also affected Tesco, Waitrose & Virgin which asks the question is open always the best way forward?

If you are thinking of social media for your brand, you need to decide who is in control and how much openness you want in case not everything posted is friendly.  Your fan page followers will grow slower but this maybe suitable for niche brands and products who don’t need 4,000,000 fans to be a successful social media campaign.

Related Images: