Are Facebook Email Marketing Tools about to become a thing?

Facebook Email Marketing Tools

It’s 2020, the world is completely upside down and businesses are clamouring to be seen. Many already have email marketing strategies in place and are using the staples of Mail Chimp, Campaigns Monitor, Constant Contact and the millions of others readily available. Could Facebook be about to turn email marketing on it’s head?

Facebook has confirmed with AdWeek that it is testing its new Facebook email marketing tool for pages with a small number of small & medium sized businesses! 

The tool lets businesses create email contact lists from spreadsheets (or manually entry if anyone boths with that nowadays) via ‘easy to use tools’ and send those emails directly from the Facebook platform. Naturally it will also provide all the tracking techniques we’ve come to love.

“We’re testing new email marketing tools with a small number of businesses to help them more efficiently notify their customers of changes to their services and operations. We’re evaluating whether these tools are beneficial for people and businesses before deciding whether to expand it further."

Facebook Spokesperson

How to check if you are selected for the trial.

If your one of the lucky people who gets to test it you can find it in your Facebook Page inbox tab under ‘Marketing Emails’. 

Screenshots courtesy of Coffey & Tea.

What does this mean for Facebook?

It’s too early to tell, but this test is certainly an interesting move for Facebook. As one of the premium data agencies in the world, combining your email data and campaigns could have some huge benefits. It’s easy to see Facebook becoming a dominant player in the email campaign market, outstripping the current big players.

Speculating, it may be possible to start running both email and display campaigns directly from Facebook, allowing businesses to send emails when users are known to be active on the platform. combining email and Facebook data could allow for distribution when users are in certain locations, active online or looking at particular content at that very moment. 

It would be nice to see some cross integration too with Facebook ads. You may already to set up separate Facebook campaigns that compliment your email campaigns but taking it a step further and providing full integration based on audience interactions has huge potential. 

5 Ways To Improve Your Customer Journey

5 Ways To Improve Your Customer Journey

“By 2018, consumers will be using three to four personal devices every day. At any given time, a
person will likely be carrying two or more devices.” -Gartner

The journey your customers take before making a purchase has undergone a transformation in recent years. Thanks to the invention of smartphones, wearable tech, and multiple screens, the way we search for products and services has forever changed. 

If you’ve ever looked at a customer journey in the past you’ve probably seen it depicted like the diagram below. A straight forward flow-chart of Awareness, Consideration, Conversion and Retention. 

The customer journey begins with the ‘need’ for a product/service, followed by some quick research, and finally choosing our potentials and buying the product. If a company was lucky then it would also benefit from some retention (returned purchases)

Basic Customer Journey
Basic Customer Journey

Now, there are hundreds of channels and touch points. Consumers are bombarded with thousands of adverts and marketing messages every day. We change our mind more than we would probably care to admit. Companies battle to be in every channel possible, sometimes spreading themselves too thin and sadly destroying the message they are trying to convey. 

Below are just a few of the standard channels that most of us engage with on a daily and weekly basis.

Customer-Funnel
Customer Journey & Touch Points

With so many marketing channels and touch-points how do you optimise for a modern day customer journey to increase leads and sales? Outlined below are our top 5 options to improve your customer journey.

1. Optimising Your Media Spend

With all online channels you can do a lot of research into who is engaging with your advert/message. If you’ve had campaigns running for a while its always best to do a deep analysis of them to see if they are fully optimised. 

  1. Are your PPC campaigns converting? If not, which adverts or keywords are the worst offenders? If you have keywords that never covert consider turning them off and putting that budget into more effective campaigns and ad groups. (one caveat – make sure you’ve got your PPC set up correctly first otherwise you may cause more issues – we can help with that!)
  2. Are your adverts hitting the right people? Is the newspaper/magazine you advertising in really reaching your customers? Are your Facebook adverts targeted effectively? Are your Display campaigns hitting the right locations?

By doing a deep analysis of your main spend channels you can begin to see areas of wastage that can be cut back on, either saving your money or allowing you to funnel that money into channels and campaigns that are more effective to your business.

2. Remarketing To Customers In Real Time

Remarketing is every digital marketers go-to tool and rightly so! Imagine having a customer who just started their customer journey: they’ve come across your product/service among the hundreds out there that they are evaluating. How do you keep them interested while they move down the customer journey? 

Now that you’ve seen our products and services we can help you re-advertise (remarket) your products back to them to ensure that they don’t forget about you. We can help you show them articles/blogs/products that they might be interested in based on their previous searches with you.

According to studies website visitors who are retargeted with display ads are 70% more likely to convert [Source: Software Advice]

3. Remove The Pain Points / Conversion Optimisation

Are you seeing lots of traffic but not many sales? It’s time to identify where your customers are having problems. Look at your analytics and see where customers are dropping out of the buying cycle. Identify these pain points and remove them. Maybe your purchase process is too long; your product landing pages aren’t providing enough information; your website is loading too slowly, or maybe they just can’t find your contact details online! 

You may not be able to remove all of the pain points but work through them and see if you can reduce them as much as possible. 

Struggling to find your pain points in analytics? Why not ask your customers? Speak to us about running some digital customer service feedback. We can help find out exactly what your customers think of your products/services and the ability to buy them. 

4. Create Worthwhile Upsell and Cross-sell

Although the customer journey can sometimes look like its finished at the point of purchase, it actually goes way beyond this. How do you get your customers to come back to you time and time again without annoying them?

Reach out to your customers based on their previous actions with you and offer them additional offers, and corresponding products/services that are personalised to them (see below). They’ll be more appreciative then just receiving standard, generic adverts. 

OK, so what if you have a large purchase product or a service that they won’t repeat for a long time? Why not offer your customers a referral benefit? They can refer their friends and family and get a small bonus for everyone who buys your products/services. 

Did you know that Word of Mouth accounts for 20% – 50% of purchase decisions? Help your customers to help you!

5. Personalise Your Service

A personalised service is akey part of the customer experience. Offering your customers an experience tailored to their wants and needs makes them more likely to continue their journey with you. 

93% of companies that instigate personalisation on their website see an increase in conversions – Econsultancy

You’ve probably already come across personalisation without realising it. Many of your favourite retail sites show you a personalised homepage based on the previous products your purchased or like. Amazon is probably the best example of this. 

Full personalisation systems can be expensive and out of reach of many SMBs, but that doesn’t mean you can’t personalise your services.

  1. Personalise your email content by segmenting your audience. Show customers products and services related to what they have previously purchased, rather than the products you want to push.
  2. Allow customers to store their information for faster checkouts in the future. Reducing the steps it takes to buy a product, reduces the chance they will drop out of the process.
  3. Create a customer loyalty program. Studies show that 82% of consumers are more likely to buy from brands with loyalty programs AND they spend more money! A loyalty program could be anything from a reward card at your local sandwich shop, to access to early promotions and special discounts.
  4. Get Customer Feedback – don’t just ask your customers what they like/hate about you, enact the changes they suggest. Modern customers like to feel wanted and needed by companies. Let them help with streamlining your processes and create a bond that goes further than just simple transactions.

Conclusion

Improving your customer journey can have more impact and less cost then trying to get more customers through the top of the funnel. Making small changes can make a HUGE difference in the long term.

Hopefully a couple of the options above have inspired you to go away and look at your own funnels and maybe improve it slightly. If you’d like any help or advice, then drop us a message and we’ll be happy to help.

What Is Google BERT? And Should You Be Worried

What Is Google's Bert update?

Even if you only dabble in Digital Marketing you have no doubt come across the new Google algorithm update – BERT. But what is BERT? How will it affect your website?

Well, lets go back slightly. Google releases between 5 and 10 large updates every year, or at least they used to. Now you’ll find they release thousands and thousands of time on-going updates that make minor tweaks to the algorithm that affects how your website is found. In 2018 alone Google released 3,234 updates to the algorithm! But when a major update comes along it gets a catchy name. Penguin, Panda, RankBrain, Fred…. or BERT, because why not?

What do they change in theses algorithm updates?

That’s a best kept secret of the Google team. Sure, they give a little overview of what the aim of some of the updates are but they keep the technical stuff to themselves to stop people figuring out how to play the system.

This doesn’t mean we can’t figure it out though. Looking at the data most of the SEO community can piece together the changes and potentially how they might change a websites visibility in the SERPS (Search Engine Results Pages). For instance in the past two years we have had a move to mobile first indexing, Site Diversity (making it harder for one website to dominate a single search result), meta description size updates, etc. The aim always being to improve search results for customers and help you find what you are looking for.

What is BERT?

BERT is the latest addition to the search algorithm. It’s designed to better understand what’s important in natural language queries for both typed searches and the increasingly popular voice searches via smart speakers. It’s aim is to help the algorithm understand those longer conversational search terms (long tail keywords as we call them in the biz) that users pump into the system every day.

See, Google’s algorithm is great. It looks at what you are looking for and tries to match the results as best it can to your query. It even takes into account your search intent – whether you are doing research, looking at buying a product, interested in reviews etc.

But, sometimes it struggles to understand our little human idiosyncrasies in the way we type and talk. Human language is really difficult for a computer to understand at times. We have multiple meaning on certain words:

‘I left my phone on the left side of the room’

‘The baseball pitcher asked for a pitcher of water’.

We also have things like homophones – words that sound the same but have different meanings:

Where, Wear, Were

To, Too, Two

Bear, Bare

As well as Anaphoras, Synonymy, Polysemy and Homonymys that we use in every day life but never really think about.

We instinctively learn the context of these words as we grow, but Google really struggles to understand them at times. Particularly if the user uses the wrong one. It has to look at the natural language and the context of the words to help it understand the meaning of the sentences. Ultimately that is BERT’s aim.

So whats the impact?

At the moment not much! There so far hasn’t been any major spikes to the search results like we’ve seen in previous updates. But this doesn’t mean things won’t change over time as the system learns. We honestly don’t know what BERT will affect at this stage, or how you can optimise for it. In fact Google is telling you not to waste your time even trying! But the upside… we can stop (for the most part) trying to write for a machine when it comes to the content of our sites. Sure, we’ll still need to include keywords to be found, but we can hopefully start to write a little more human.

Want To Find Out More?

If you’re looking for more information on the BERT update then I would highly recommend reading Dawn Anderson‘s Search Engine Land ‘A Deep Dive Into BERT‘. As I type this is the most comprehensive article on the subject and well worth a read.