Category: Technology

Before Building Your Business Website

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zKNuNjw5p1Y&t=1s

Today I’d like to talk to you about your company website. We get calls all the time from potential clients and the calls usually go something like this;

“Hi, our company needs a new website, we do XYZ, please send us a quotation?”

Well this is really the wrong approach to developing or designing your primarily digital property for your company. And when I get that question I always push back and ask, “Tell me more about your company, what you sell, what are your business goals, your current customers and who is your target audience” Because this is the information you need to keep in mind when building your website.

Whether you are an e-commerce company looking to sell products online or a non-profit looking to engage with donors and/or your constituents, you always need to keep in mind that your company or organization has a specific goal or objectives and your website will have to play a very major role in helping you achieve those objectives.

Your website is a very key piece in your overall marketing and communications strategy and unless it is directly helping you achieve your business goals, then you might as well not even have one.

You don’t just need a website, you need an effective website.

 

So before you start the process of identifying someone, or a marketing agency to build your website, you need to ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Why do we need a website
  2. What business purpose do we want it to achieve: Conversion examples – Hotel rooms, Online sales
  3. Who is our website’s target audience – who is your target audience as a company
  4. How do we want our website to serve them
  5. What is the success criteria for our website
  6. How will our website help us achieve our business or organizational goals

Remember, your business has, or should have a business plan that is reviewed and updated annually. And included in that business plan is a marketing plan that hopefully includes a digital marketing strategy. Therefore, with the cost of smartphones and data dropping, resulting in more people getting online in huge numbers, your website is actually the backbone of your business growth and marketing strategy. At least for most organizations. That’s how important it is to your overall success.

So, when the time comes when you are ready to build your company website, be sure that you work with a partner who takes the time to understand your business, understands the importance of your website to the success of your business, and is able to guide you through the process of not just building a website, but building an effective business tool.

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A Walk Down Memory Lane: What Makes An Advert Special?

Nafurahia, undugu na uko wetu, Nasherekea, kazi na bidii yetu,

Tuvute pamoja Tushirikiane, Bega Kwa Bega tujikaze tusaidiane.

If you were born and living in Kenya back in 2010, you probably sang these words out loud. You probably visualized the T.V advert displaying the beautiful Kenyan scenery; the mountain caps, hills, oceans, and valleys. You probably even pictured some of the faces behind the advert. If, for one reason or the other, you don’t remember the advert, then here it is. If you do, here is something to reminisce about.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uIBHuqeis3U

What’s your most memorable Kenyan advert, and what characteristics make it memorable? Is it the effort displayed, the aesthetics, or the music? Is it the location, the characters, the contextualization, or the relatability? I would argue that it’s a myriad of factors. Marketing in general is extremely delicate because the best kind of marketing does not actually feel like marketing. The irony, right? People do not buy goods and services. They buy relational stories and magic. They buy the stories you tell them through the advertisements.

An article on Forbes emphasizes the need to pay attention to the slightest detail when it comes to advertising. Advertisements can make or break a product especially in today’s highly competitive markets. Creating the best commercial is vital to getting one’s product out there.

I see colors, the wonder of colors in everything I touch, in everything that reminds me of a world of beauty, a life of plenty…

Do these words immediately ring a bell in your mind? Do they remind you of Crown Paints? If they do, then the brand probably did a fantastic job of curating the content. This advert was not your regular T.V commercial. The music is catchy, and the brightly coloured images make it almost addictive.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wGHVl6rOpCM

But we’re not just talking about Television Ads. Let’s not forget all the Duracoat billboard Ads by the famous Peter Marangi. In this case, the advertisers used him as a brand ambassador to push forward their product. Whenever you saw him on a billboard, you could almost hear his voice as displayed on T.V and radio commercials. Years later, people still associate Duracoat to Peter Marangi, meaning that the advert indeed had an impact.

Let’s not forget the “Share a Coke” advertising campaign by the Coca Cola company back in 2015. We were probably more drawn towards the product because of the name tags. Most of us were excited to find our names and buy the drink for our loved ones because of the names written on the bottle. This advertising campaign was extremely successful and for a simple reason: It was relatable. Consumers were able to interact with the brand on a personal level. The essence of marketing is in relating to your target audience, and therefore, an advert will only be successful if the people can relate to it.

But beyond the actual content, and perhaps the most important, is the quality of the audio-visuals. In fact, a study carried out in the U.S concluded that the most effective “brand assets” in making the spots more memorable are audio cues and characters.

As the world moves more towards the digital space, the advertising scene will not be left behind. In fact, it becomes a little more demanding. Online adverts and especially those on social media, need to capture the attention of the users and make the advertisement memorable within a few seconds. Just recently, a study by Microsoft found that the average human being now has an attention span of eight seconds. Online content needs to be tweaked to capture the audience’s attention within these few seconds.

As a brand, memorability may not be your only goal when it comes to advertising. How do you measure its success rate? Well, that is entirely dependent on you. What benefits are you aiming to reap out of it? Is it consumer awareness, an increase in sales, or promotion of the brand image? More often than not, the aim of the commercial should determine how it is arranged and produced. However, if you can make an advert memorable, more and more people will be drawn to purchasing the product. A memorable advert can translate to increased awareness, sales, and a good brand image. A memorable advert may just be what you need for your brand.

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The Frequency Illusion Theory

You can be in any part of Kenya – Nairobi, Kisumu, Nyeri, Mombasa, Embu, or even Meru – but the minute you see a lime green poster or billboard, you will immediately associate it with Safaricom. Similarly, you can be in any part of the world, but that candy red hue will forever be associated with Coca Cola. Why? It all started with the Frequency Illusion theory, and it’s time we harness its power in our marketing strategies.

Our brain has an incredible talent for pattern recognition. This is the basis of the theory, which occurs when the thing you’ve just noticed, experienced or been told about crops up constantly. With time your brain makes permanent associations with that thing.

The theory is also known as the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon. While this may sound like the name of a brilliant philosopher from the 1920s, it was actually the name of a German extremist group in the 70’s. The “nick-name” came to be after someone expressed an unsettling feeling of hearing the name Baader-Meinhof more than twice in less than 24 hours. You can come across the name Ashley or John ten times a day without realising it, but a name like Baader-Meinhof? That’s definitely something surprising. 

We have all been there. You are shopping for a branded handbag on an E-commerce website, and for the rest of the week, you keep seeing that particular brand everywhere you go. You are on the phone talking to a friend about a trip to Watamu, and suddenly everything you see on the internet is Watamu-related. More often than not, your first instinct will be that your phone is ‘stalking’ you, but you may in fact be experiencing the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon.

How can businesses leverage this as a marketing tool? It’s the ever-glorious C word- Consistency! Make sure that your audience is seeing your content as often as possible to a point where they associate certain colours, patterns, shapes, and even sounds with you. To trigger Frequency Illusion, make potential clients aware about you. Use a variety of marketing techniques, and do not be shy to repeat yourself. After all, only repetition can put the “frequency” in the frequency illusion

Now, go forth, and don’t be surprised if you keep coming across the words Baader-Meinhof today. It’s just the Frequency Illusion theory in play.

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The Propinquity Effect: Absence doesn’t really make the heart grow fonder.

Think back to the first encounter with your favorite waitress at the cafe you frequent or the first encounter you had with your ‘friends who became family’. Did you really feel the same way about them then as you do now? Probably not and understandably so because, the more you saw each other and interacted, the more both of you found similarities and formed a stronger bond. Proximity is the name of this ‘game’, better coined as propinquity by social psychologists.

The propinquity effect in the paper “The Spatial Ecology of Group Formation” by psychologists Kurt Back, Leon Festinger and Stanley Schachter (1950) is explained as an interaction with people that happens ‌frequently that helps in making friends. Through frequent meet-ups, people get to know about each other and their nature, enabling them to like each other and eventually want to meet more often because they both find each other attractive and develop a close bond.

In our present time and age, most consumers have an urge to consistently interact with brands and I believe you have an idea what it means for your sales metrics should you decide to be silent in the digital space and not interact with the ever-evolving consumer . 

The hot takeaway from this is simple; live rent free in the minds of your brand’s key stakeholders by constantly engaging them with relatable content in the digital space. I could emphasise more on the phrase ‘content is key’ but that’s a blog for another day. Simple tactics you as your brand’s decision maker can employ to ensure your at the top of mind of the consumer are;

Re-targeting: Also known as remarketing, with its core principle being that it’s easier to push previous consumers down the sales funnel than it is to convert new consumers that have engaged with a brand. Why is this, you may ask? To simply put it, re-targeting helps position the brand at the top-of-mind of the consumer hence, allowing them to get to the point of conversion when they’re already close because of the frequency of interaction.

Multi Platform advertising: Think of this as the art of storytelling using different platforms. A good story is one that’s told so many times, but it sounds different every time because of the messaging and such is the case with multi-platform advertising.  Any consumer who hears the same message enough times from different sources has it at their fingertips and is more inclined to interact with the brand in question.

Consistent posts: Ask most people from a failed relationship what the breaking point was and more often than not you’ll hear “there was no consistency”. Humans want to consistently feel satisfied and when you can no longer increase their dopamine as you previously did by satisfying their needs, it’s only a matter of time before they call it quits and look for an alternative source. Consistently posting relatable content for your target audience and customers makes sure they can always interact with it, hence you are always only a thought away and easier to access.

For any further questions on how to maintain proximity with your customers, do not hesitate to email us at godigital@triodigital.co.ke  or through our contact page by clicking here, because, haven’t you heard? We get the internet.

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You’re Doing It Wrong

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eDLbReH-Xp0&t=7s

Digital marketing, you’re doing it wrong. Let’s talk about some of the common mistakes people make in their digital marketing and how to fix them.

Here are 10 common mistakes that businesses and agencies make when carrying out their digital marketing.

1. Forgetting Mobile Users 

When designing a website, it is common for marketers to design a website that looks good on a computer but completely forget about designing it for mobile phones. Last year in Kenya, 87% of all web traffic was on phones, with an average of 3 hours 48 minutes spent online on phone per day. With numbers like that you cannot afford to have a website that does not give a good user experience to a phone user. In fact, with numbers like that, you should build your website with the main focus being a great mobile user experience.

2. Not Measuring ROI

No matter whether you are doing the digital marketing yourself, or if you have an entire marketing team dedicated to it, digital marketing takes time, money and effort. Sometimes we end up putting in more effort and money than it’s worth without knowing it. Always measure the return on investment of your marketing efforts and see if they are actually worth it. If your business sells products directly online, it’s a pretty simple process of tracking sales points. If not, follow up on each lead by asking them how they heard about your business.

3. Targeting Everyone

When we believe in a product, we often think to ourselves, “who wouldn’t want to buy this?”, and that is how we end up targeting our marketing efforts. We end up casting a wide net because we think it may yield the most results. Sadly in digital marketing this is one of the worst things you can do. Casting to wide a net ends up expending valuable resources. Instead it is best to carve out a niche segment of people who NEED your product. Change your mindset from “who wouldn’t want this” to “who can’t live without this”.

4. Not Personalizing Their Communication

We have all received those marketing emails that start with “Dear sir/madam” from an email address like info@blablabla.com, and more often than not they either sit unread or get deleted immediately. That’s largely because of the cold detachment with which they are sent. Without the personal touch, nobody cares that much about what you have to say in an email. Next time you have an email campaign going out: address the recipients by name; make sure the content is for their benefit, not yours; and have the email come from a person.

5. Being Anti-Social on Social Media

A lot of older more established companies join social media and use it like a billboard or a newspaper ad; as a channel to pass on information and that is it. The beauty of social media is the ability to interact. If you just use it to share information and ignore comments and messages, people quickly see this as bad customer relations and quickly switch to a more interactive option.

6. Focusing on Acquisition and Not Retention
Most digital marketing efforts by companies are geared at getting new customers, reaching new people and markets. However in most cases, your business is sustained by repeat customers. If you are a garage, you want customers who will come back every time they need your services, the ones who will always tell their friends and family about their go to garage. The ones who know all the mechanics by name. Do not neglect them, because they are the ones that keep the lights on when business is tough. Instead offer them more and more reasons to come back.

7. Doing It Alone

Hire people.
Work with an agency.

8. Poor Budgeting

You get what you pay for.

9. Not Setting Goals

Set specific & measurable goals that you can actually achieve.

10. Not Using The Data

You are making assumptions about your customers.

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Landing Pages: Why They Matter

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i53sbpf5FkE

The single sole purpose of an online Ad is to solicit a click

1. Make it campaign specific

  • A dedicated campaign about the offer
  • Should have the same creative/concept as Ad

2. It’s about Conversions

  • Don’t be shy, tell them what to do
  • Lead them down the path to conversion, literally

3. Keep it simple

  • Share the most important info and leave out the rest
  • Uncomplicate the conversion action

4. Focus on the Benefits

  • They have arrived. They want the product. Talk about the benefits

5. Make is user friendly

  • It must be mobile responsive
  • It must be easy to navigate
  • It must not be confusing

All the work you have done on the front end can go to total waste if you have a crappy landing page. If you are running a well-planned campaign, you must plan adequately for the traffic it will generate.

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Repurposing old content: There is no need to reinvent the wheel.

To paraphrase the immortal words of Tony Soprano, “every day is a gift, it just does not have to always be a pair of socks. “

 

We all tire when the same thing is done repeatedly because there is no element of surprise. It’s akin to going home to the same meal every day after a tiresome day of work, but coming up with new recipes every day is hard. What if you could take your leftovers and make them taste like a fresh new meal? Like turning last night’s nyama choma and chapati into today’s roast meat tacos.

You can use the same logic with your content. Creating new content every day can tire anybody no matter how much coffee you drink, but why struggle and there is a ‘cheat code’? Here’s how you can take your existing content and make it feel fresh;

1.Turn blogs into social media content: Take snippets and quotes from your blog and turn them into awesome text based content. If your blog has a lot of data, you could condense this into a simple infographic or series of graphs that could be shared on your social media platforms. That’s not all, if you aren’t camera shy, you could turn your old blogs into scripts for video content.

2. Create bite sized social media videos from an existing video: Take your longer form video content (vlogs and content longer than 60 seconds) and turn them into bite sized videos for platforms like TikTok, Instagram reels and YouTube Shorts. This can be done by cutting up your long form videos or reshooting 15 second videos based on your old content, with focus on capturing different key points that can all be used as new pieces of content.

3. Repurpose webinars as social media video content: Webinars usually have a decent number of attendees,  but not everyone you intend to attend it can, because it depends on their availability. You can upload the content on YouTube and chop up different segments from the webinar that can all be used as fresh pieces of content for your social media platforms (just like in point 2 above).

With this new ammunition, go forth and conclude the content creation battle set before you. But don’t worry, we wouldn’t just hand you a bag of ammo and ask you to fight on your own. We are here to help. If you would like someone to step in as your champion and take up the fight for you, reach out to us by emailing godigital@triodigital.co.ke.

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Free Digital Tools To Take Your Brand To The Next Level.

You’ve been thinking about growing your brand’s digital presence. Like many, you have created social media accounts across the relevant platforms. Well, that’s a good start. In your line of work there probably exists similar brands all scrambling to stay on top of the game. How do you stand out from your competition online? In this digital era, your online presence can make or break your brand. 

Hiring a digital marketing guru might not be in your budget currently. However, you don’t need to break the bank or settle for less when it comes to your content. Here are three free beginner-friendly digital tools to make you stand out in the digital space.

Canva

This free graphic design website has templates for anything and everything you might need. What makes this application unique is that you don’t need to be a pro at graphic design to use it. From Instagram posts, logos, posters, infographics and so much more, Canva offers you free creative templates and elements to choose from.

Unsplash

Do you cringe anytime you come across a poorly done photoshoot or a low-quality image online? You no longer have to worry when it comes to finding images that work best for your brand. As a free, crowd-sourced stock photo service, Unsplash has over 2 million images from photographers across the world. Getting that high-quality image for your website or social media post is just a download away.  

Hootsuite

Planning and analyzing social media content is not an easy fete. No one wants to spend a whole day posting content (unless you’re a social media manager). Hootsuite allows you to link your social media accounts be it Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Linkedin. You can schedule your posts, weeks and even months ahead giving you time to focus on other tasks. This application also gives you free analytics on how your social media accounts are performing, and don’t worry, it presents them in a user-friendly format for easy comprehension.

Have you used any of these applications? What other free online tools do you use to help with your digital presence? Tell us in the comments below!

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The Big Bad SEO Monster

Search Engine Optimization (or SEO for short) isn’t what the blogosphere would have you believe. It is not some unstoppable big bad monster lurking in the shadows trying to destroy your company and everything you hold dear. At its core, SEO is simply the process of making sure that the people that need to find you can find you. As long as you focus on these two key components of any search, you and your beloved will be just fine (no pitchforks and torches necessary).

The Human Aspect

Each search is done by a person looking to achieve a certain goal. This goal could be to find your business, to find out about the products and services you offer, or even just to get directions to your doorstep. As a brand, your goal is to make sure you are easier to find than your competition while making sure all the information potential clients would require is available to them.

The most important step to doing this is to view your company from the perspective of a customer to figure out what it is your clients look for when they look for you. One you have channelled the inner client within you write down a list of words that people would use to find you (hold on to these). These “keywords” form an essential basis for your website. Sprinkling them in a frequent manner on your website makes sure that when people look for you, they find what they are looking for.

The Cogs in the Machine

Working on SEO without understanding how search engines work is like going monster hunting with a quiver full of arrows and no bow. You may get lucky and prevail in the end but it is ill-advised, so please sit back and allow me to string your bow.

Search engines are software systems that scour the world wide web for information which they display in Search Engine Result Pages, or SERPs for short (we digital marketers are obsessed with abbreviations). Basically, search engines find the stuff they think you are looking for. To do so, they crawl through your website and find as much information as they can about it from each page. The search engines scrutinize every aspect of each page from the visible content to the media. Like a mother-in-law, search engines are very judgmental, looking at every tiny aspect of code behind your webpages.

Search engines are however text-based systems making text-based content your best friend in SEO. For these, the best policy is to regularly sparingly add the keywords in the text where they make sense; search engines penalize web pages that just stuff keywords in illogical places especially in page descriptions that are just keywords with no context. When it comes to non-text elements such as images and video content, search engines rely on the descriptions of them in the website code. To optimize non-text content, you should use the relevant keywords to name your files as well as use keywords to describe them in the meta-tag (it’s like a description that only the search engines see).

The monster hunting world of SEO is vast with many tools and methods to achieve your goals. The process is long, arduous and recurring but it is very effective and with the rewards being more than worth it. We hope this at least helped you get to know the monster a little better. Go forth and HAPPY HUNTING.

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