Category Archives: Social Media

Is Your Digital Marketing Strategy Holiday Season Ready?

Did you know that according to the National Retail Federation, the revenue generated during last year’s holiday season was over $690 billion? What’s more, around about 20% of the sales were made online.

Over the past few years, consumers’ purchase journey has changed drastically. Technology and smartphones have led to even the most traditional customers taking the long route for making a purchase – from the mobile app to the web, to the brick and mortar store. The more savvy buyers, like most of the millennials, prefer doing most of their shopping online.

Therefore it is now imperative for businesses to up their digital marketing game to make the most of the holiday season. After all, this is the time when most of the people are going to want to get done with their shopping. Here are a few suggestions on how you can add more power to your digital marketing strategy this holiday season.

Build on the hype with prospecting campaigns

Prospecting campaigns are the kinds of campaigns that enable you to target those people who may not yet be aware of your brand. As these campaigns are generally used to cast a wide net, they are perfect for building brand awareness and the products and/or services offered to the customers. The new visitors to the site can then be retargeted with personalized ads, based on their browsing history.

Make mobile your priority

Reports suggest that businesses that invested in mobile prospecting campaigns earned saw 81% increase in their ROI. Even their mobile retargeting campaigns managed to garner strong click-through rates throughout the holiday season. Salesforce predicts that mobile traffic and orders are expected to overtake the desktop traffic this year. Hence, it would be a wise decision to focus your holiday marketing strategies around mobile.

Target the last minute shoppers

Panic purchase is indeed very real! There are many people out there who keep delaying their gift purchasing until the very last minute and then go into a frenzy to get it all done in time. Targeting these last-minute shoppers with your digital marketing campaigns can easily lead to a boost in sales during the holiday season.

Retarget through November & December

Reports show that businesses that ran retargeting campaigns through November last year saw an 85% rise in sales and an 80% boost in their total revenue. In order to ensure that you do not miss out on any sales opportunities, it is better to focus your efforts on retargeting all through the holiday season.

Bring in the influencers

With social media playing a huge role in almost everyone’s life these days, investing in influencer marketing strategies gives a brand great reach, connections and impact. This is especially true for the holiday season. When a person, who a lot of people already relate to and ‘follow’, endorses your brand and products and/or services, it is bound to have a positive impact on website traffic and sales.

Final Takeaway

Even if you have not yet been able to come up with any special plans for your digital marketing for the holiday season, it’s not too late. You still have time to amp up your marketing strategies with the help of the tips given above so that you can bring in more traffic and boost your sales.

All That You Need to Know About ‘Dark Social’

Contrary to popular belief, social media marketing is not just about getting the likes and the shares. A lot of digital marketers and SEO specialists indulge in practices that fall under the ‘dark social’ category to get more traffic to their clients’ websites. So what does dark social really mean? Let’s take a quick look.

What is Dark Social?

Despite how fishy it all sounds, it isn’t anything dubious or scary. ‘Dark Social’ is basically a term coined by one of The Atlantic’s senior editors, Alexis C. Madrigal to describe website traffic and social media interactions that are difficult to track and measure through traditional analytics. Often referred to as dark social traffic, this kind of website traffic doesn’t seem to have any specific source. This is mostly the result of content and links being shared through emails, text messages and DMs (Direct Messages).

The Most Common Sources of Dark Social Traffic

  • Native Mobile Apps – A lot of people use native apps such as Facebook, Instagram, etc. to copy-paste and share a great deal of links. Surveys reveal that these copy and paste shares represent as many as 80% of all shares.
  • Messaging Apps – The rapid growth of instant messaging apps such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, etc. has also given rise to dark social interactions. Reportedly, there are over a billion people around the globe who use WhatsApp to talk about and share information on various brands.

How Does it Affect a Business

The thing about dark social interactions is that although they are difficult to track, they more often than not lead to conversions. Say a friend of yours shares a link with you through Facebook or WhatsApp, you are will most likely click on it, won’t you? Hence, one can say that dark social traffic is just as valuable to a brand as the traceable traffic. After all, it is word-of-mouth between people who most likely know each other.

Ways to Find Out How Much Dark Social Traffic you Get

    Make use of link shorteners. This makes it possible for you to get a slightly better understanding of the clicks that your tracked links receive.
    Upgrade your share buttons by using tools that allow you to use inline or sticky share buttons. It will be easier for you to track these links even when people share your content through emails, text messages or instant messaging apps.
    Do a quick audit of all your direct traffic in whatever analytics platform that you use. Chances are that most of the long links listed under direct traffic were not typed in manually and hence, they may have actually come from dark social.

To conclude…

There really isn’t much that you can do about the dark social traffic you get. However, it is expected to grow even further. Several industry reports suggest that dark social is bound to impact social media marketing plans in 2019. If as a brand or a digital media professional, you plan on using it, it is advisable to first know all the basics and understand how to track it.

US ADULTS PREFER REDDIT OVER FACEBOOK AS A NEWS CONSUMPTION SOURCE, REVEALS A PEW SURVEY

reddit

According to latest survey by Pew Research Center, more than half of US adults get their regular dose of news updates from social media networks. Going by the survey, which was carried out on 4,654 members of Pew’s American Trends Panel, it was observed that 70% of Redditors get news updates from microblogging sites. Over 60% Facebook users get news from the social media network, whereas around 59% of Twitter users get their news updates from there. This leaves us the other social sites like Tumblr at 31%. Surprisingly Instagram is at 23% and believe it or not, YouTube is at 21%. LinkedIn does the catching up at 19% and the same goes for Snapchat at 17%. Vine features towards the end of the list at 14%.

According to Pew report, both YouTube and Twitter had equal amounts of exposure. As far as reach is concerned, YouTube has about 48% of US adults hooked on to its network, with 21% users getting their dose of daily news updates from there. While around 16% of US adults visit Twitter handle frequently, only 59% of them access the network for regular new updates.

Talking about social media as a source of news consumption, Facebook is frequently accessed for general news updates with over 60% US adults visiting the site on a regular basis. 26% of US adults use more than one social network to get their daily dose of news updates, whereas the remaining 10% visit three or more sites.

As per Pew’s latest social media news consumption report, Facebook’s social giant status doesn’t seems to help much as Reddit holds the top position in terms of news consumption on regular basis. This means Facebook is down at the second position, being widely used as a social sharing network. It is followed by Google’s own YouTube channel, which continues to hold the third position despite being viewed as a popular video uploading solution. The question is why YouTube is lagging behind Facebook in terms of news discovery. Credit to Facebook on developing its network as a news discovery channel; but it needs to evolve further if it wants to topple Reddit as the top social media news consumption network.

TWITTER ABRUPTLY CALLS OFF IT’S “BUY NOW” SERVICE, REVEALS BUZZFEED REPORT

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Twitter recently put brakes on its two-year-old eCommerce plan. The company is reportedly disbanding the team managing the “Buy Now” Button project. According to media reports, the company disclosed its e-commerce plans in September 2014 by rolling out the “Buy Now” button on its timeline. This button enabled users to complete the purchase of a product within their tweets on Android and iOS devices. On abruptly calling off its e-commerce plans, the company cited obvious reasons saying it’s plate is too full at the moment. This is the reason why majority of the team members handling the “Buy Now” project either opted to resign or shifted to other departments such as customer support desk or the Product Advertising section, which needed a beef up on an urgent basis.

Having said that, the decision made by the company hardly comes as a surprise, with the social e-commerce model not being in demand as seen in these two years. About the reasons behind the company calling off its e-commerce plans, Buzz media reports,

“people are not buying on social media right now.” If so, it doesn’t justify the continuation of development for a product that may not necessarily convert for the microblogging network. However, it appears that dynamic product ads are performing well, and customer service is a big focus for user retention. Social commerce may have been a consideration under Twitter’s former CEO, Dick Costolo, but with Jack Dorsey at the helm, it was important for the company to realign its efforts toward what makes sense for today, and social commerce just wasn’t part of that vision.

According to on-going social trends, the company’s dynamic ad platform is a proven performance model and as per the company, it is performing quite remarkably. This is the reason why the company wishes to keep investing in the platform. In its statement to BuzzFeed, Twitter stated that as per its current plans the company wishes to keep investing in the dynamic product advertising model.

But in distant future who knows if the company will again revisit its social e-commerce model.

FACEBOOK INTRODUCES NEW FEATURES THAT ALLOW USERS TO SHARE & TRACK THEIR LIVE VIDEO COUNT

facebook

There’s no doubt why Facebook’s live video feature is scaling the popularity charts these days; it allows its users to create and share content on their timeline. The company rolled out this feature to all its users earlier this year, in August, 2015. The newly added features are so designed to attract more users to the platform.

Make your videos go live in Facebook Groups and Events

The addition of live video feature provides more broadcasting options to users; it was previously possible only through a page or a personal profile page of a user. But now users have the luxury of broadcasting a video within their own set of groups as well as their event pages. Broadcasting live videos in event pages gives a natural touch to the proceedings, as it allows participants to share videos with other viewers who were previously unable to watch it.

New interactive features to increase User Engagement

Here are some extra features that are designed to increase audience engagement level

  • Live Reactions: Users can make use of the live reaction pack to respond to the video posted on the timeline.
  • Replay Comments: This feature enables users to watch replays along with comments of other users while watching the recorded broadcast of the live videos.
  • Live Filters: Now users can make desired changes to their live videos by making use of Facebook’s five filter pack. The company is currently testing it, before making it available to the users. Besides that, the company is also testing the ability to draw or doodle on videos.

Ways to discover Live Videos

Similar to what one does with Periscope, users can now make use of Video Map Feature to discover Live Videos on Facebook. Also, users can search, share and invite friends to watch live and recorded videos on the basis of their interests, creators and topics.

New ways of tracking Video Metrics

Besides the above-mentioned features, Facebook has added some new metrics to track viewership of live videos on it’s platform. During a broadcast, the new tracking feature takes note of the total number of live viewers. The new chart shows the count of live viewers tuned in to watch live video broadcasts. Users can make use of Page Insights and the video library section to leverage these newly added metrics.

Above mentioned features can be expected to be rolled-out to all Android and iOS users in weeks to come.

PINTEREST REPORTEDLY WORKING TO BUILD SUPPORT FOR VIDEO ADS ON ITS PLATFORM

pinterest

Taking inspiration from Facebook, Twitter and Periscope’s success with video streaming, Pinterest is currently working on an interactive ad format, by including support for video ads on its platform. In fact, the company started planning on streaming live video ads on its platform after launching Cinematic Pins in May, last year. According to a recent report by Digiday, last year Pinterest allowed some advertisers to test their video ads on its image-sharing network. Besides that, the company is apparently working on building the video ad product and testing it internally.

According to information from credible sources, the company is building support to autoplay video ads on its platform, whenever a user pauses over the video feed. As of now, the company is still determining the ideal video length on the platform.

As per Digiday report, the company is in the process of adding more resources to its platform to co-exist with the already existing Cinematic Pins.

Pinterest is trying to replicate the success of the number one ranked social networking platform, Facebook, which is currently attracting over 100 million hours of video playback on a daily basis. But to attract the same kind of audience response on its platform, Pinterest, the fourth-ranked social networking site will have to compete with the likes of Facebook, Twitter and Periscope, to name a few

For more info, write to us at sales@ebrandz.com.

THIS IS WHY YOU MUST USE HASHTAGS

hashtag

The hashtag is a tagging system used in social media to categorize content & deliver relevant search results. Just adding a hashtag in front of any keyword or phrase, transforms it into a hyperlink. When clicked, it leads to all the content containing that same hashtag. Adding hashtags makes your content public as it becomes viewable to anyone on the network, even if they are not connected to you.

Hashtags are extremely effective when used properly and can provide you with many benefits. Some of them are listed below:

1. Increase Brand Awareness

You can boost your brand awareness by adding hashtags to your content. It will enhance the reach of your posts by luring the audience that is searching for content mentioning the same keywords or phrases. For example, Apple launched a new phone & everyone is searching for it on social media using the hashtag #AppleNewPhone. So if you post information about the new phone & use the same hashtag, you will be able to cater to those thousands of information hungry searchers, even when they are not following you or connected to you by any means.

2. Elevate Promotions

Product-based hashtags not only help you with promotions but also let you monitor your progress. Use product-based hashtags if you are launching a new product, as it has proven to be powerful in raising awareness. You can also encourage other social media users to use your hashtags by offerings some kind of reward in return.

3. Seek Out New Trends

Hashtags are also great for finding out current trends in your specific industry. All you have to do is click on a hashtag & you will be able to see the discussions carried out by your competitors, customers & everyone else who is part of your industry.  Of course, not every result will be relevant, but you will get the required information for sure.

4. Start Your Own Conversation

You can start your own conversations through hashtags. Of course playing around with popular & trending hashtags will save you some time & promotional efforts. But that doesn’t mean that you are compelled to follow others; you can first promote your hashtags and then try and start an entirely new thread. You can use it either for commercial purposes (Direct branding) or for social welfare (Indirect branding).

5. Organize Social Dashboards

Keeping track of relevant & trending hashtags allows you to stay on top. There are many websites that allow you to organize trending hashtags into columns, thus providing you with valuable insights into news related to your niche. You can either search for trending topics and then create content around it or you can do it the other way around.

Final Thoughts

Hashtags are very easy & effective in categorizing, finding & enhancing the reach of your content. But don’t overdo it, otherwise it will hurt the readability of your posts. Use relevant & trending hashtags and keep track of all the popular ones so that you can utilize them to the maximum.

For more info on how to effectively utilize hashtags, write to us at sales@ebrandz.com and our reps will be in touch with you right away.

NOW USERS CAN SWAP FACEBOOK’S DEFAULT EMOJI REACTIONS THROUGH BROWSER’S EXTENSION SUPPORT

facebook-like

If you’re bored of using the standard set of emoji expressions for your reaction to a Facebook post then there’s some good news in store for you. Wanna know what? Read on…

Facebook recently rolled out an Emoji Reaction pack to go with its Like button. A few weeks later, Google’s Chrome browser and Mozilla’s Firefox released a new browser extension that enables Facebook users to swap the standard reaction pack with sets of customs reactions, including DiCaprio and Donald Trump.

facebook-emoji

The browser extension of Facebook’s Reaction Pack was developed by Rodney Folz. It allows Facebook enthusiasts to choose from a cool collection of reaction packs featuring politicians, Hollywood celebs, animated caricatures, etc. and swap them with Facebook’s default emoji reaction pack. However, there’s no new reaction added to the tally of the old reactions, which included Like, Love, Haha, Wow, Sad and Angry. If you want to publish your own reaction pack then you can do so here.

To give you a brief account of the proceedings so far, in the previous month, Facebook rolled out a set of emoji Reactions to go with their Like button, globally. This was to allow users to post their reactions in the form of sadness, wow, anger, love and laughter emojis. This development happened after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s statement in September last year stating that the company was contemplating adding a “dislike” button. The statement sparked off an online debate on whether this will add to cyber bullying incidents and spread negativity on the number one ranked social networking site. But contrary to the media reports, Facebook launched a set of emoji reactions to go with their traditional “Like” button.

Moreover, the company said that the users’ reactions on the site will also be used to study consumer behavior. The company will then serve ads to the users on their timelines based on their findings. Facebook’s blog post reads, “We will initially use any Reaction similar to a Like to infer that you want to see more of that type of content.” But so far Facebook’s reactions have received mixed reviews from the users of the site.

Do you “Like” this? Please let us know by writing to us at sales@ebrandz.com.

FACEBOOK’S ROLLING-OUT “EMOJI REACTIONS” TO GO WITH ITS “LIKE” BUTTON

facebook

Bringing an end to more than a year’s worth of media speculations, Facebook has reportedly launched “Emoji Reactions” on its platform to go with its trademark “Like” button. Facebook has been working behind the scenes for quite some time now to enable online users to express reactions such as Wow, Love, Angry, Happy or Sad.

These “Emoji Reactions” will give Facebook users more expressive freedom by allowing them to react more freely to a particular post, rather than just “Liking” a post.

To use “Emoji Reactions”, mobile users are required to hold on to the Like button and choose from an array of reactions. On the other hand, desktop users need to place their mouse cursor over the Like button, which will make the emoji’s appear on their screens.

To evaluate the impact of emoticons as a part of online self-expression, a whole lot of research and global online surveys were carried out by Facebook. The roll-out of “Emoji Reactions” is a culmination of their years of research and it will soon be available to you for online self-expression on the platform.

“Emoji Reactions” are soon to be rolled-out globally to all the users; that includes the desktop, mobile, iOS and Android app users.

TWITTER INTRODUCES GIF SEARCH SUPPORT

twitter

In an attempt to address its stagnant user base concerns, Twitter has launched GIF search across its platform. Short on creative juices, Twitter drew this latest creative inspiration from its rival, Facebook’s successful version of Playbook which uses a GIF image search on its in-app messaging platform. Very much on the similar lines, Twitter is now launching a wider GIF image support on its platform. This will include all kinds of GIFs that you have known and loved over the years, thanks to their associated partners – Giphy and Riffsy.

It’s hardly a surprise that of late GIFs have had a commanding web presence and according to Twitter, as of last year, over 100 million GIFs were shared across its platform. According to latest Giphy updates, the animated image search platform revealed that it recently closed a $55 million financial deal. Now, with a microblogging site coming into the picture, it more or less endorses and bolsters the fact that animated images form an integral part of self-expression online.

Having said that, the new GIF search functionality is simultaneously being rolled-out to Android, iOS and desktop users. Hopefully, the new feature will add to the engagement level of the audience by making their Twitter experience a worthwhile one.

Want to add anything? Have your say by emailing us at sales@ebrandz.com.