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Geolocation and Geomarketing

July 15, 2014

What is Geolocation? Geolocation is the identification of the real-world physical, or geographic location and behavior of an object such as a mobile phone or an Internet-connected computer. The integration of this information into aspects of marketing is referred to as geomarketing

It’s fairly easy to recognize why marketers would be interested in geolocation: you can effectively target customers at the most crucial point in their consideration cycle – standing right in front of you or the product. Historically, digital marketing has been relegated to brand awareness or driving customers into e-commerce.

Social media has been shown to break the wall that exists between the two – brand building and purchase behavior. Starbucks has done a fantastic job of driving sales through social media engagement.

The value of geolocation for the consumer is not as clear, though. Studies have shown that more than 30% people who have smartphones say privacy concerns prevent them from sharing their location on their mobile devices. 

To overcome consumers’ fears about privacy, marketers can use a brand’s authority and reputation. Brand trust will be one of the main factors in driving geolocation services into the mainstream. Nike and their Nike+ products are a good example of this. On top of their brand authority, Nike used sharing achievements with friends and the running community to provide consumers a clear reason to share their personal information and location data. 

Yelp is another company that successfully used geolocation on top of social media from the beginning. By letting reviewers check into restaurants with their phones, they could be reminded later to review the restaurant. This built their reputation with their friends and others as an authoritative “foodie.” That reputation was worth giving up some privacy for.

Don’t worry about getting everyone – especially your casual customers to check-in or engage with other geolocation services. Instead, you should incentivize your most loyal advocates – your existing, active social media followers. These consumers will let you know how much they trust your brand based on their social behavior. Plus, you can tell how influential a consumers is when they check-in or use other geolocation abilities. Always reward and thusly reinforce that behavior.

Create rewards and reinforcements that yield richer social connections with your consumers. By putting consumers in touch with each other, your brand creates a meaningful and engaged community around a shared idea. That’s a big win for everyone.

For example, Taplister does a great job of this by connecting beer aficionados with geolocation information about where their favorite beers are on tap. Taplister successfully builds on the beer lover’s desire to taste, compare and discuss beers with others interested in the topic.

As of 2014, Over 60 million people have used a geolocation service. That’s enough to recognize that geolocation and geomarketing should be an important component of any digital marketing strategy. It’s still early enough for you to run a pilot program to determine what works and what doesn’t without risking your brand equity. Information you acquire will become invaluable when using geolocation services becomes as commonplace as sharing a picture on Facebook.

What are you doing to be ready?

Nuggets of Wisdom

June 20, 2014

We are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.

~Aristotle

Nugget of Wisdom

May 19, 2014

“To achieve great things, two things are needed; a plan, and not quite enough time.” -Leonard Bernstein

Broken Connections

May 15, 2014

I write this in a state of having been abandoned by the internet. The CAPITAL-I, BIG-CHEESE, YOU-NEED-ME-DON’T-TRY-TO-LEAVE Internet. Left me. It’s likely the wind is to blame, but I can’t help but feel like it’s personal.

As I wait to get back online, it strikes me how much of my productivity is based on having that connection. I hate to admit it, since I am still the kind of girl that likes to overdose on colorful Post-It Notes and Gel Pens, but my work-day grinds to a halt when the internet is unavailable.

And it looks like I’m not alone. A Pew Research Center study from 2013 showed that more than half of all U.S. adults bank online. Pew also found that 72% of internet users looked for health information online. Those are only two industries, but they serve as a bellwether for a broader trend. Gartner Research projects that by 2020, customers will manage 85% of their relationships with businesses without talking to a human.

In light of these compelling figures, it is imperative that businesses provide sufficient opportunity for customers to connect with them directly online. But if your company limits this kind of interaction to a Facebook link or a simple email form, you are missing out. With so many companies – from smaller, community-based initiatives to global conglomerates – trending toward cloud-based CRM’s to manage their clients and business activities, offering a client-facing window in your website that drives information and opportunities to your CRM can save you vast amounts of time, improve the speed and quality of your responses, and make your business much more appealing to those of us (and there are a lot of us, as you saw above) who only want to handle our affairs online. And in the end, that all translates to a more successful business.

Salesforce, a leading CRM product that has been an industry trendsetter for more than a decade, is very sensitive to the needs of its customers in terms of providing an online interface for their clients. Within the Salesforce CRM environment, you can generate forms for use on your website that allow the information collected to propagate inside Salesforce. This data can then trigger automated responses to the client, and automated functions within Salesforce that alert employees to the need for action. The robust content management features of Salesforce then kick in, and allow the various data and history related to that client (if any exist), to be readily accessible for use in furthering that relationship.

This is maybe the simplest form of client interface provided by Salesforce, but their offerings go beyond web forms, and include feature-laden customer portals that can also be accessed through –and branded consistently with – the company website. Salesforce also has platform capabilities that allow the creation of entire websites and applications that directly integrate with the Salesforce environment. Applications, donations, and event registrations can all be managed through the website while transmitting data through to Salesforce. To learn more about these features and other Salesforce offerings, visit http://www.salesforce.com/products/.

It is not a completely new concept, but the extent to which people are increasingly relying on companies to provide online capabilities for connecting is skyrocketing. If you are managing your clientele through a CRM like Salesforce, and haven’t maximized your website tie-ins, we can help.

Prioritization – how do I know what to do next?

April 10, 2014

The ability to correctly prioritize your to do list is a skill that develops gradually.  How many times have you made a to do list, started ranking the tasks as A, B or C level with the A’s the top priority, and realized that you have a list that’s 90% or more comprised of A’s?  With maybe a few B’s or C’s thrown in as you notice the trend?  And when you have a continually evolving list that never goes away, knowing what to do next gets very problematic!

Here’s a great method to not only rank your to do list, but also determine what you should actually be working on next:  Assign two scores to each task.  Each task gets an importance ranking and an urgency ranking.  Let’s face it – we often have tasks that really aren’t important in the scheme of things, but seem urgent (usually due to someone being quite vocal about it).   Forcing ourselves to assess both qualities helps keep the list prioritized correctly.  To keep it simple, each score can be a 1, 2, or 3.  So if the task in question is super important, and needs to be done this week, it would receive an importance ranking of 3, and an urgency ranking that’s also 3, for a combined score of 6.  An important task that doesn’t have an official deadline may get an importance ranking of 3 but an urgency rank of 1 for a combined score of 4.

If you keep your list in a spreadsheet, and track the scores in three columns, you can sort by importance (1 to 3), urgency (1 to 3), or the combined score (2 to 6).  And the combined score lets you know just what you should be working on next.  Even if you don’t want to track that formally, just factoring in both qualities when you’re evaluating a task will help you prioritize more efficiently.  And by the way, those tasks you rated as 2’s?  Accept that they’ll never make it high enough on the list to be handled by you, and either delegate or delete them – and move on.

Website trends for 2014

March 31, 2014

This is a topic fairly overused by this point in the year.  I’ve recently run into a multitude of articles and blog posts with a very wide range of trends in web design for 2014.  Some are written very well, and arguably spot on from my perspective, while others seem as though they were written for a different year (or decade) altogether.  However, frequently in both cases there is little focus put on the “why” side of the reasoning as it pertains to the users themselves – i.e. the customer.

Here’s a short list of trends I feel are very important as it relates to the customer experience:

Responsive design

Long story short, this is a website that has been designed and programmed to dynamically adjust itself based on the browser resolution on which you’re viewing.  Very importantly, we’re not just talking about a website scaling to different resolutions – for example a web browser versus a mobile phone browser.  That is important, but an excellent responsive experience also dynamically adjusts the presentation of the same content base to target the information the user needs – all based on the device they’re using (and even based on location!).  For example, a PC browsing user may be looking for much more detailed research information including graphics, lists, and more; however, a mobile browser may be simply looking for contact information, reviews, or an abbreviated description of something.  Customer value: a seamless device-agnostic experience.

Content that delivers value

Today’s users have much higher expectations, and very short attention spans.  That means that content needs to quickly answer a user’s questions and immediately deliver value.  In addition, as critical as today’s users may be, today’s search engines are even more critical.  Google has spent the last 12-18 months completely turning the SEO industry on its head.  Google’s algorithms are sophisticated enough to know whether the content you write provides value to users – even down to the grammatical correctness.  Customer value: unique and concise answers.

Infographics

The Internet can present an overwhelming deluge of data.  Continuing along the trend of providing value in a unique and concise manner brings me to Infographics.  An infographic is a graphical representation of a collection of ideas, statistics, facts, etc.  A well done infographic can help a website (or other medium) to quickly convey what would otherwise be an overwhelming and potentially boring collection of content.  Ideas such as Infographics will be more crucial than ever in capturing a user’s attention long enough to get the message across.  Customer value: innovative presentation and engagement.

Wrap-up

This is a very short list of concepts already making a splash in the web and digital marketing industry.  SNQ is extremely focused on providing high customer value and engagement, and these concepts are a great place to begin.  As always, think outside of the box and dare to be different.  Be not quo!

Scott Capistrano

President

Status Not Quo

The Importance of Being Mobile

March 27, 2014

As mobile devices become more advanced, desktop and laptop computers become more and more antiquated. Users want to be able to substitute their computers for more palm-friendly iPad minis and cell phones. This makes the importance of ensuring that your business’s website is mobile friendly is undeniable. If you are a business, the last thing you want is a website that potential customers consider inconvenient or difficult to navigate.

Mobile App

As we are so used to such a convenient lifestyle, we naturally expect that shopping online will be as easy as possible. When this isn’t the case, we don’t even waste our time because we know that there is a more convenient place to spend our money. When your website isn’t responsive, meaning it adjusts to fit whatever device it’s being viewed on, you lose a significant amount of potential profit. Having a developer make your website responsive isn’t too costly and can pay for itself after just a few new customers.

Another great way to increase a mobile clientele is by developing your own mobile app. Consumers are downloading app, upon app, upon app, to make their shopping experience more lax. An added benefit of having an app for your business is customer retention. By them downloading your app, you become visible to them every time they check their phone. It’s almost like a form of advertising when your logo is constantly on their home screen.

Apps also tend to turn virtual shopping interactive. You can offer coupons, forums, rating systems, etc. Your app can be whatever you want to make it.

The idea of developing an app may put you into monetary cardiac arrest, but there’s little steps you can take to make developing one as cost efficient as possible. To save money, make sure you already have a logo designed and only include the features that are necessary to your business. Besides, plenty of users appreciate simple apps that aren’t confusing to figure out. You may think it’s a good idea to make a DIY (do it yourself) app to save a few bucks, but if you aren’t a seasoned developer, you may not produce the most optimal app. Our advice is to consult with a developing firm that has a team of experts, like us at Status Not Quo, to make the coolest app you could have imagined.

If you would like more information about developing a mobile app, visit our website to contact us.

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