Yaaaay….another year with another set of resolutions that are meant to be broken. I’ve sworn off white bread and beer which lasted a whole 2 days! Here’s to hoping your resolutions are still in place. For the young business entrepreneurs, let’s talk about some business resolutions we hope you can keep in place this year.
#1 Social Ads
The online advertising spend went thru the roof last year. According to a recent study, the digital ad expense had grown 17.2% (to $160 billion….with a b!) in 2015; and is looking towards a 13.5% growth for this year, which can eventually overtake television, as the biggest advertising platform by 2017.
So how do we tap into this market to catch up with your competitors?
- Decide which platforms are best for your target audience. If you’re selling hand crafted items that rely on nice images to sell your product, then Pinterest and Instagram may be the way to go. If you’re in the B2B space, then Facebook’s pinpoint targeting options could be an ideal solution.
- Test your posts by engaging readers with a contest. For instance, the 500th person who like’s your page will receive a complimentary set of steak knives!
- Utilize call-to-action ad formats. Facebook’s Click-to-Website ads with clear CTAs, can direct traffic onto your website instead of just promoting it.
#2 Facebook Messenger for Business
In March of 2015, Facebook revealed Messenger for Business, taking the widely used, and sometimes annoying, messenger system the we’ve used in the past to directly contact our friends or stalk and ex girlfriend (it wasn’t me!), and making it available for B2C and even B2B conversations.
Facebook messenger’s user base topped over 700 million users each month and even experienced a 40% growth from ’14 to ’15.
Just in December last year, Facebook announced that businesses can also install a Facebook Messenger Box on their websites to utilize it in a similar manner, as a website’s Live Chat Box. Be on the lookout for this tool to become more important in delivering the right messages to the right people at the right time.
Ugh, podcasts! Seriously? A bunch of wanna be radio personalities stuck in their mom’s basement? C’mon bro. But let’s think about the “on demand” thought process of how we ingest media these days. Directv, HBO, ESPN…all these outlets now have the capability to watch when you want to.
There are several times when I listen to my favorite morning radio show that I’m literally late for work, because I want to hear the rest of an interview or segment. If I had the chance to go back and “rewind” or play it when I want to…I would.
Approximately 46 million American listen to podcasts monthly and the average listener listens to six a week, according to Edison. OK…fine, not so nerdy anymore right? But how can marketers leverage these in 2016?
One way is going back to traditional methods and playing ads. I know it’s hot in your mom’s basement and you need a break, so fill it in with a sponsored break, this hour of “Ralphie’s Basement” is brought to you by Ovaltine! It might be tough to do at the start, but companies like Squarespace and Casper have leveraged ad space on huge podcasts like TED Radio Hour and “Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me.”
#4 Predictive Analytics
Let’s stay on the nerd channel for a bit. It’s honestly never been cooler (or more profitable) to be a geek these days. The tools for analytics these days are becoming more prominent in several industries collecting data from day to day engagement. Highlighting trends and patterns, marketers are able to create campaigns based on probable outcomes, or predictable analytics.
Basically…you order pizza every Friday night after you go out with your crew, so at 3am I’m going to serve you an ad for Pizza Hut!
Learning these patterns means less risk and more reward, and an efficient spend of your ad dollars. Get familiar with some predictive analytic softwares like Google Analytic or Open Web Analytics.
#5 Wearable Technology
Let’s polish off this list with the coolest nerd subject out there….wearable technology. Like I said, never been cooler to be a nerd these days! Have you ever decided not to buy something because of how difficult it was? Or have you bought something because it’s sooooo easy to buy? I have…and now I have waterproof radio’s inside both my showers.
I’m surprised merchants are not adapting to this technology quicker, but I believe the cost to adapt to the wearable tech might be too much for the lower end merchants. For instance, some merchants don’t accept certain credit cards due to the percentage of each transactions they require. Or even a minimum purchase to use a card. It’s coming Mr. Business owner, so be on the lookout for us nerds looking to flash our wrist! A recent study found that almost 80% of Apple watch users have used Apple pay. Nerds Unite!!!