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Digital Marketing Trends for 2017

As anyone who followed the UK Brexit referendum, the US Presidential election or even, to a lesser degree, the progress of Ed Balls to the later stages of ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ will confirm, making predictions can be a tricky business. This is particularly true where technology is concerned. After all, how many people, hand on heart, can say that they put a bet on one of the biggest phenomena of 2016 involving crowds of people walking the streets whilst simultaneously playing a video game involving cute Japanese creatures (that’s Pokémon Go to anyone who’s spent most of the year hiding in a cave)?Nevertheless, it is part of our remit as a leading advertising agency to stay on top of the trends which might be emerging during the next twelve months. Only by ensuring that we know what is coming down the line will we be able to offer our clients a fully rounded service, and that includes spotting the trends which don’t take off, as much as those that do. After all, the most well established digital platforms were once innovative start-ups, and tools such as email marketing, Google adwords and custom mobile apps might once have been regarded as gimmicks, are now pretty much taken for granted.

Bearing that in mind, we offer a few brief predictions for digital marketing trends which might emerge during 2017. We can’t guarantee that they’ll all come to fruition, but we do promise that we’ll keep a careful watch out for them either way, and will offer those that do emerge as part of the package which our clients can access.

Augmented and Virtual Reality

We’ve already mentioned Pokemon Go but, as well as being lots of fun and getting hard core gamers up and out into the fresh air for a while, it also underlined the possibilities offered by augmented and virtual reality. How about an app which enables customers to see the furniture they’re wearing in place in an image of their home, or a headset which lets you take a ‘walk’ round a holiday spot you’re thinking of booking? The limits are literally as wide as you can imagine.

Live Video Streaming

Turn your branding and advertising into an event by streaming content live. Video streaming is becoming more and more of a feature of social media, thanks to a combination of broadband availability and more advanced smart devices. When the first Presidential Debate of last year was streamed live across multiple platforms all over the world, the form genuinely entered the mainstream.

Personalisation

The sheer weight of content pumped out across all digital channels will mean that much of what is produced is lost in the ‘background noise’. Brands and businesses will be able to combat this, and make sure that their content cuts through, by making increasing use of big data to finely hone the personal nature of their content.

Mobile

Mobile has already overtaken desktop as most people’s online access point of choice, and this process is only going to accelerate. Combine this with search engine algorithms which concentrate on websites optimised for mobile access, and you have a situation in which being fully responsive to mobile search is a necessity, rather than an option.

Wearable

As wearable devices and the internet of things become mainstream, so advertisers will increasingly become able to target content to both the individuals previous history and their current location. This means that marketing content which is useful in real time will become every bit as important as content which simply sells.

As one of London’s leading marketing and advertising agencies, we pride ourselves in our forward thinking and staying up-to-date with the most recent trends. If you are looking to take your business to the next level, contact us at PRM London or contact your local UK advertising agency for a consultation and review to improve your business’ marketing strategies.

 

 

 


Omni-channel Marketing

As a top advertising agency we pride ourselves on remaining completely up-to-date with the latest developments in marketing. Over recent years, this has meant fully realising the opportunities presented by the most up-to-date digital platforms. From something which now almost seems traditional, like email marketing, through to getting Google certified with adwords and utilising the latest cutting edge custom mobile app, we offer our clients the full range of tools via which to get their message across to the people who matter – the customers.

A large part of offering the best possible service involves remaining fully aware of the latest developments, and in terms of digital interaction that currently means advising our clients that there approach to marketing now has to embrace an omni channel perspective.

Until now, many companies, whether working with a marketing agency or not, have adopted a multi-channel approach to their marketing efforts. In simple terms, this means interacting with consumers and potential consumers via a number of different platforms, ranging from a website to a bricks and mortar retail location and taking in aspects such as emails, flyers, posters and even packaging. The days when on online presence could be regarded as an optional extra or even a luxury have long since passed, but the latest trend, driven by consumer demand above all else, is for all of these channels to work together seamlessly.

The modern consumer is used to being able to access digital content on a more or less constant basis, and via numerous different devices. Until now, the emphasis of the average marketing agency has been placed upon ensuring that the messages in question are equally accessible via devices such as smart-phones and tablets as well as the more traditional lap top or desk top PC. An omni-channel approach takes this one stage further, recognising that the modern consumer demands a unified service no matter how they opt to interact with a business, and providing this across all media.

This would mean, for example, that a consumer who begins searching a website on their smartphone whilst commuting to or from work would then be able to access the same site on their tablet at home that evening, and find that their details and the details of their earlier search had been transferred across the devices. The same will also be true if they then decide to make an online purchase on their laptop, or even if they visit the bricks and mortar store. In this last example, the shop assistant in the store will be equipped with a device such as tablet enabling them to access the consumers’ online profile.

Whilst only a handful of businesses – such as large corporations like Disney – have actually travelled very far in the direction of an omni-channel offering, the modern, digitally engaged consumer will soon begin to take the customer service levels involved for granted. This will mean companies accepting the fact that all parts of their organisation, including on and offline divisions, marketing and customer service, will have to work together and share information and resources to deliver the experience the modern consumer demands.

 


Simple Tips For Effective Email Marketing

As a London ad agency, it’s our duty to think about every possible channel when it comes to spreading the message of the people who hire us. The digital revolution has increased the communication channels and advertising options massively, with the result being that many businesses – particular smaller concerns lacking the ability to lavish lots of money on a marketing department – can feel somewhat overwhelmed. Developing PPC advertising, working with Google Adwords and creating a custom mobile app to drive sales can all seem like highly complex and specialised practices. Of course, that’s where professionals like us enter the picture, but the individual or small business is still in a position to take advantage of the power of email marketing. There’s a tendency to look upon email marketing as being somewhat old fashioned in this multi-media age, but get it right and it can form an excellent channel of communication between you and your customers.

The key to effective email marketing is to keep a few simple tips in mind at all times. You don’t want to bombard your customers with emails until they’re sick of the sight of your name in their inbox, nor should you send out unsolicited email marketing. What you should do is provide carefully targeted and crafted messages capable of providing what your customers want in terms of information or entertainment, and designed to turn them into repeat visitors to your wider online presence.  A few simple tips and pieces of advice will help you to do this:

Links

The underlying purpose of any email marketing is to drive traffic to your website, landing page or home page. No matter how entertaining, informative or useful the content of your email is, if the recipient doesn’t click through then it won’t actually lead to any business. Make it easier to click through by including plenty of links and calls to action, and making sure that the links obviously are links. Don’t be afraid of being obvious and using ‘click here’ links.

Unsubscribe

It may seem to defy logic to make it easier for customers to stop receiving your marketing emails, but the opposite is even worse. It someone chooses to unsubscribe, then you have to accept that you got something wrong in this case, and make it easy for them to do so. A long, drawn out process, or one which is all but impossible, will have two effects; it will lead to the customer blocking all of your emails permanently, and it will create a lingering negative impression of your brand. Let them unsubscribe now, and you might get another chance in the future.

Keep it Short

Nobody has lots of time to send ploughing through long, drawn out emails, so make sure that you edit to keep yours short and concise and include the relevant information as quickly as possible.

Images

Many email programmes don’t automatically download images, so make sure that the text and any images you want to use are kept separate, and that the main message of the email is not contained in just an image.

Don’t Overdo It

Don’t send too many emails to your customers. You want them to look forward to hearing the latest you’ve got to tell them, discovering your newest offers or finding out what advice you’ve got to share. Several emails a day will simply frustrate even the most loyal customer.

 

 


Business Presentation Tips

Want the best business presentation? Have a look at these 5 best practices.

Having a business presentation can be a very stressing, and therefore, a very difficult situation but it’s something that we must all do if we want to make our businesses flourish. So, we should get used to that idea and conquer our stage fear, no matter how grand it may be. In my career, I have done many presentations, and I can only say that I’ve gotten better with practice but at first I was helpless, so here are a few tips I’ve learned on the road, I hope you find them useful for your own business. Happy presentations!

1. Choosing an amazing software: Back in the day, one could only dream to master the delicate art of Power Point to create a slideshow for your business presentation. One could create great graphics and add very cool headlines but in my opinion at least, Power Point is just not dynamic enough. Not long ago, I discovered Prezi, a fantastic software that allowed me to deliver a much more engaging presentation that dazzled my clients. Its mobile graphics make it a much more interactive and friendlier software, to my taste and it is not the only one available in the market. Have a look at the different softwares out there and impress your clients by doing things differently to what they are accustomed to. It takes a little time to learn it but you’ll have no regrets once you’ve mastered it.

2. Being assertive is key: This can be a little tricky to achieve but once you’ve found that place where you feel comfortable with yourself, then you shouldn’t have any problem. Being assertive is all about demonstrating flexibility, while at the same time, showing that you’re firm in your own convictions. Just relax, and be sure that you have a product that is necessary for your clients and that their business is important to you as well.

3. Eye contact and your audience: Having a presentation is a lot like being on a performance stage, one has to keep louring people’s attention and the best way to that is by addressing them directly. If you feel that you’re loosing your audience’s interest, try to find the most distracted one and talk to that person directly, as if you were giving your presentation only to that person. Once you’ve recovered your audience’s attention start addressing everyone else.

4. Avoid reading in presentations: This is a personal choice. In my experience, I have learned that keeping your eyes on your audience instead of your notes is far more effective. From my perspective as an audience, I think a presenter that keeps his or her eyes in their notes is unprofessional and rude, so try to avoid it. PRM can help you with your graphic design to make your presentation stand out with infographics or even an animated video.

5. Suit up!: This is a trick I learned from Byron Read, who told me that suiting up has nothing to do with a power trip, but it has to do with the formality of a business meeting. Your clients need to know that you will take their business seriously and a formal suit can say that about you and much more. Turtle necks are now trendy in business meetings but I honestly rather a person in a suit, makes me want to be as ambitious as they are, but it’s a personal choice.

Thank you for reading this and next time you’re trying to find a London Advertising Agency, I hope you consider PRM. Perhaps we can discuss our meeting experiences and compare notes.


Business Networking

The importance of Networking for your business.

Networking can be a very tricky thing to do but it is also one of the most necessary steps you need to take towards a successful promotion of your business; if you ask around, amongst people in sales about the secret behind success, most of them will accurately tell sum it up in one single word: networking.

In previous blogs I flagged out the importance of an accurate digital strategy for your business but this will only distribute your product amongst potential clients, while networking will allow you to explore different markets, via other people in your same line of business, or perhaps generate new ideas for your product by discussing them with your peers, or even generating alliances with a kindred business person. Networking can ultimately prove to be very beneficial for you and for your business, and in this blog I’d like to share with you a few things I’ve learnt about this particular marketing strategy.

1. Always carry a business card: This is one of the first things I learnt in my early networking experiences. When trying to get someone’s contact details, you can always take your phone out and take their name and their number but a business card adds a touch of professionalism, especially because it not only has your details but it also includes your brand, which is the very purpose of your business networking efforts. So, try to carry as many calling cards as you can, you never know when you are going to meet the best next person for your business.

2. Make contact: one of the things I learnt from Byron Read is that your business opportunity is a phone call away, so make that call! Once, you have made contact with someone you dimmed interesting then get in touch with him or her, by any means, personally I think a good old fashion call is the way to go, but an email works as well. However, try to do some homework before hand; try to do some research on this person you’ll be meeting, try to find out about their personal tastes and use them to break the ice. This will allow you to find a common ground, other than business, that can create a smooth business when you go into the brass tax of your meeting.

3. Play the long game: Talking about business can be a little uncomfortable, I’m actually terrible at it when I’m not sufficiently comfortable, only because I get very nervous and instead of promoting my product I end up talking nonsense. So, take it easy, talk about something else when you’re trying to establish a business relationship, find about the other person, try to understand where they are coming from, what their tastes in life are, and when you feel aloof enough then talk about your business. You’ll find it to be much easier.
4. Your marketing agency: Limiting your network is not a very thing to do. You may actually find out that people that seem to be outside your kind of market can actually be of great value to your business. If you have a marketing agency behind you, it can be a good idea finding out if they are a Google certified agency in London, this means that they handle different accounts and they can, therefore, put you in touch with many different kinds of people when hosting a networking event. So, remember to meet as many as you can, regardless of their area of expertise.


Advertising the Arts (pt. 2)

If you have been following this blog, then you may know that in my last post I was writing about an experience I had with an international production between Mexico and the UK, in which I participated as both a playwright and a producer. This is the second part of that story and it will also serve me to sum up my own conclusions on how to effectively market your performance.

The last time I was talking about this subject, I summed up some of the strategies we used to advertise our play, i.e. setting a webpage, producing a video, approaching the embassies and other international organisms. After this we organized a party at a well-known venue in London. You may want to consider this for you own show, but I would recommend that you do it as close to the opening as possible, as in our experience, not many people from the party showed up to the play, only because it was done in July when the opening was not until November.

We finally went to an Advertising Agency that set up the final stages of the marketing process. Byron Read, head of this agency, pointed out the many mistakes we were making in our marketing strategies. I can safely say that most of the conclusions that I will now sum up in this blog, I draw from them.

 

  1. Social Media in the Arts: First of all, we were not doing as many posts on our social media as we were supposed to. When you are advertising your play using social media it is of the outmost importance that you make daily posts about anything, a picture, a blog post, a twitter, whatever you can think of, just put is out there using your Social media accounts. Be controversial and it doesn’t even matter if your post is related to your play. Remember that social media is all about interconnecting and interestingly enough the arts are about exactly the same. I’ve known no one in Theatre who has made it without the help of others. So, share other people’s content in your own media and they will do the same for you.
  2. How to Attract the Press: This is one of the most difficult tasks when it comes to marketing the arts, especially in London. There is just so much to see in this city that putting another play in the market is like putting yet another needle on the haystack. So, what this London Advertising Agency taught us, is that the only way to do it is by calling them and letting them know you are out there. Since there is so much to see then you want to call as many bloggers, newspapers, magazines, and critics as possible, chances are not many of them will come but if you have enough in your lists then your chances are immediately enhanced. Reviews are of the essence!!
  3. Free theatre in exchange for reviews: If you are seeing that your audiences numbers are not going too well, you may want to try some websites that offer free tickets to their members in exchange for reviews. The Audience club and Play by Play are two attractive options for this purpose; they require from the members to write reviews from the plays they’ve seen in order to get the tickets; this is a useful strategy if you are looking to stack up the house over a day when there’s not many people. We used it on a Tuesday, since it was our weakest day, and it worked wonders!
  4. Arts throughout the time: What we ultimately learned is that, the more time you have doing your show, the more audiences you will ultimately get when you arrive to the big city. Do readings of the play, perform it in cheaper venues outside the city, get early reviews, and so on. The name of the game is BE OUT THERE, as much as you can.

So, these are my conclusions about advertising the arts. Of course, there is so much more to say but I think this sums it up. I hope this is helpful to you, I wish you the best of luck with your show and remember to invite me!