Recently, I was asked to share a case study on one Singapore company’s digital marketing efforts. I picked Singapore Airlines (SIA) as it is one of Singapore’s prestigious brands and one of my favorite brands as well. I’ll simply do a quick check on search engine and social media with brief comments. [Read more…] about A Look At Singapore Airlines’ Online Presence
Executives and business decision-makers love to see the trends and catch the trends, use trends to guide their decisions. This post would introduce 10 handy trend tools which are very helpful doing online research.
- Google Trends – Google Search Trends
- adCenter Search Volume Seasonality Trends
- adCenter Keyword Forecast
- Facebook Lexicon – Facebook Social Trends
- Twist – Trends in Twitter
- Trendpedia – Blog Trends
- BlogPulse from Nielsen – Another Blog Trends Tool
- Trendrr – Trends across Social Graphs and Networks
- Google Checkout Trends – Online Sales Trends
- Indeed Job Trends Tool
1. Google Trends – Google Search Trends
With Google Trends, you can compare up to 5 topics you are interested in and see how often they’ve been searched on Google over a period of time. It also shows how frequently your topics have appeared in Google News stories, and regions where they are searched for.
David, regional head of search of Neo@Ogilvy asked an interesting question in LinkedIn,
What synergies exist between email marketing and search marketing. Can you provide an example of how the sum is greater than the parts?
Search recent years is gaining more and more popularity among marketers. According to a recent MarketingSherpa’s annual survey of ad:tech:
Email marketing from house lists, a top tactic of 47% of marketers in 2006, was cited by 42% in 2007.
SEO is gaining in popularity among marketers: 57% of those surveyed in 2007 said it outperforms other tactics (â€great ROI – outperforms other tacticsâ€), compared with 45% in 2006.
Paid search remains a strong money maker for 34% of those surveyed, but thatâ€™s down from 49% in 2006, likely due to increased competition that raised keyword prices and lowered ROI.
Email marketing is overall the best marketing tactic though I personally favor search marketing over email (too tedious to me). So, is it true that “email + search > email | search”?
My experience tells that email marketing is much more cost effective and I definitely would do that. But, is the combined effort better than individual input from each channel? I can’t tell that as I haven’t really done or found any research on that. However, I personally believe so.
Web analytics can help find out. This is how:
- Plan your campaign (for one product) to integrate your email marketing with search. This is another topic, I won’t cover it here; but, the least you can do is:
- Keep your marketing message consistent.
- Use the same images for things like logo, products
- Use the same color theme
- Make sure the landing page continues from where you entice your customer to click.
- Select a web analytics software, which allows you to:
- track the conversions from each traffic source, which most web analytics tools can do. And,
- track the direct and the other “contributors”. If someone clicks on a link in the email and converts, email is the direct contributor. However, that may not be the whole picture. He/she maybe have clicked on a PPC listing 2 days ago, which contributes to the conversion.
- Spend $1000 on PPC, with tracking implemented, allowing at least 30 days for cookies to expire (so that if a guy comes back later from other channels can be tracked).
- Spend $1000 on email, with the similar tracking implemented.
- When the campaign ends (within the cookie expire days), find out conversions from
- email only, E
- PPC only, P
- conversions from both, C
- Compare the “E + P” with C
This is not a scientific experiment. But, it definitely gives you some insight.
In Asia Pacific SEM industry, I kind of prefer working with clients who have no knowledge at all about online. When they know something but not everything, they insist doing the wrong thing or not doing the right thing.
One client from travel industry asked to remove all brand keywords proposed from the paid search campaigns even though we showed why they should not do so. Why? Simple: because they rank very high on brand terms in organic search listings.
Let me list again some benefits of using brand keywords with generic ones revealed by several studies sponsored by Google and Microsoft.
First of all, let’s see the benefits of using brand keywords even when you have top organic listings. Enquiro released a study last year, commissioned by Google, showed several interesting findings when brand term is in top ad and top organic listings:
- increase in brand association
- lift in aided brand recall
- purchase consideration increase
- boosted purchase intent
Okay, that’s Google’s message; let’s see what Microsoft said:
As the driver of conversions, it is vital that you are represented at the brand level so that you donâ€™t lose potential customers at the final hurdle to a competitor. In addition, one of the standard measures of a brand across all advertising mediums is the level of trust that brand has. Appearing position 1 in both natural and PPC listings reinforces your brand in terms of visibility to the user, while also enhancing trust in the brand.
In another a joint study by Microsoft with Sony, it also shows that exposures to Sony search ads on Microsoftâ€™s Live Search lifted purchase intent and drove likelihood that the viewer would recommend the Sony product.
A survey on search behaviour by Neilsenâ€™s Net Ratings in August/September 2007 also found out that over one third of respondents reported that they view a website more favourably if it appears in the sponsored links section.
Budgets seem always tight on internet marketing, which is especially true for search marketing. Some of our clients spent tens of thousands of dollars every month on print advertising, outdoor advertising, TV advertising, and etc. When it comes to online, they are very careful.
The power of internet marketing/advertising is the ability to track return on investment (ROI). Even if you don’t have online presence or are not doing any internet marketing, you can still make use of Internet to track your offline marketing campaigns.
Benefit of Integrated Marketing
Let’s say you spend every month $10k on outdoor advertising and $10k on prints; how to you measure the effectiveness of your offline marketing efforts? How do you know which of your offline marketing channels works better? Integrate your offline marketing with online efforts, you can better understand your return on offline marketing investment.
How To Track and Integrate Offline Campaigns
- Name matters. Imagine a name like Penallizeaniere (don’t try the dictionary; I just made this up), how could you expect your customers to remember that? Internet has become part of many people’s life; what people would do when they see something new is to search for information.
- Online presence to provide details about the product. Make contents with rich text, attracting images, and videos. Make your site a place your consumers can interact with your products or brands. The question now is, how do they reach this page? Continue reading.
- Optimized pages (search engine marketing).Â
- If you can’t hire an SEO specialist for any reason, read this post (brief) or this (detailed info). Have no idea what “keyword” is? Take it as your brand/product name (sometimes people search for the phrase you use in your marketing message).
- Then, build some links from relevant web pages of external domains. If your brand name is unique like for example takefire9, it won’t take you much efforts to optimize.
- Once the page is optimized, you can expect to receive traffic once you launch offline campaign. If your brand name is a phrase with multiple words or general term, it may not be easy to do search engine optimization.
- To ensure you get people to your site who search for information about your brands, you better do a small pay-per-click (PPC) search engine marketing campaign. And, you better start a small PPC campaign before you launch your marketing campaign.
- Consistent message across online and offline campaigns.
- Use the same image, photo, or logo displayed outdoor on the web page as well to reduce the bounce rate; you don’t expect most people to leave the site short after they land on the page, do you? Visitors need to instantly feel they land on the exactly the right page.
- If it involves online transactions, make sure the same price is clearly shown as well.
- URL tactics.Â
- Have different URL at different offline marketing channels. For example:
TV commercial: http://www.companyname.com/tv
Bus stop poster: http://www.companyname.com/cool
- If your company name is not well known or domain name companyname is not easy to remember like dell.com, pick another name. Sometimes, people might only remember companyname but not the sub-folder name. Or, some people are too lazy to do that. It could be a better strategy to have a short, memorable, and descriptive name as domain name on off-line channels. Choose a local domain extension like .sg would make your life easier as it’s very hard to find a good domain name on .com.
- You can still host the contents at your main website; ask your webmaster to set up the web analytics tracking properly and redirect people to the main site. Here are some hints from Google.
- Have different URL at different offline marketing channels. For example:
To summarize: collaborate all your marketing efforts, reinforce your message, and integrate offline and online campaigns.