Eircode and Digital Marketing

Eircode has launched today and the new service is set to make life a lot easier for marketers of all disciplines.  We’re delighted to be at D02 VK80 and, even though we’re not named on the Eircode website, we know our pizza will always find us when working late.

If you haven’t done so already, we recommend that you get on to your webmaster to ensure that all address forms on your websites now include a field to capture Eircodes.

The public will take some time to adjust to these but you can help awareness as well as update your databases now by requesting Eircodes.  Why not add a little tooltip that lets your customers know where to find their Eircode?

Check out the finder here.

 

 

 

How to Master the Art of Mobile Marketing

It can be quite tempting to scoff at mobile marketing and view it as another trend but one thing’s for sure: its here to stay – up to 89% of smartphone users look for information using their phone.

Customers are using their smartphones more and more and demanding mobile marketing through their behaviours, businesses are responding with mobile websites, promotions and apps but we have to ask the question, are they getting it right?

 

Since the introduction of the iPhone, Android and the iPad, mobile usage has been on the increase – over 71% of Irish people now own a smartphone according to  gaumina.ie

The term ‘always connected’ springs to mind here; more and more people are using their mobile devices for simple things such as checking work emails or for complex tasks such as purchasing a new washing machine!

 

Businesses are experiencing increased mobile usage at work and in their stores. They have made it easier for consumers to browse their products while on mobile devices and have created seamless mobile and in-store experiences. Businesses that have found success in this area have done so through mobile apps and websites that feature reward programs, reviews and an ability to pay and arrange and confirm delivery options.

 

A report by Google states that 84% of smartphone owners use their phones to help them shop while in a store; some of the customers turn into paying ones while the rest of them complete their purchases at a different store or online.

Further research findings from Google suggest that consumers who browse on smartphones while in a store purchase more. comScore adds to this research that 46% of shoppers are less likely to comparison shop when using a mobile app.

 

A growth in mobile usage has also extended beyond consumers personal lives. The lines between private lives and work lives are being erased with 41% of smartphone users and 37% of tablet users saying that they use privately purchased units as business devices.

 

Mobile usage is a concept increasingly taking over web browsing and with this businesses have a choice to make; they can choose to heed their customers’ changing behavior patterns or just ignore the elephant in the room. One point worth making is that businesses that don’t embrace the mobile era will be left behind in the dust with the desktops and Golden Pages.

 

According to Supermonitoring , 57% of mobile users wont recommend a business with a poorly designed mobile site. When businesses notice an increase in mobile visits and the corresponding increase in their bounce rate (how quickly one leaves a website) they should immediately take all necessary steps to evolve their web presence with a mobile-friendly site featuring a responsive design.

Responsive design adopts its layout to the viewing device, user agency and environment. The distilled definition of responsive design means that it will fluidly change and respond to fit any screen or device size.

 

Mobile promotions such as mobile website design include huge opportunities. One opportunity would be advertising within mobile networks and while this may sound easy it can be as challenging, if not more so than desktop pay-per-click ads.

Mobile advertising is a lot more difficult to wrangle than desktop advertising. It is constantly evolving and requires unique and intelligent mobile content. It also relies on three factors:

 

–       Location

–       Time

–       Relevance

 

Location refers to things like ‘geofencing’, which creates virtual boundaries for a real world geographic area. An example of this would be a newly opened restaurant in Malahide Co. Dublin – the restaurant wouldn’t serve ads to the entire county but it would instead use a digital ‘fence’ so that the ads only appeared when people entered within a certain radius of the restaurants physical location.

 

Timing is key! One restaurant may serve breakfast all day long – but not every restaurant in the city does! Restaurants that don’t serve 24/7 breakfasts wouldn’t show an ad for their breakfast special in the afternoon. In this case, restaurants rely on ‘dayparting’ – scheduling ads for peak hours so that ads only appeared during targeted times.

 

Relevance is the primary factor when it comes to mobile marketing. The point of mobile ads is not to create an opportunistic moment but to engage strategically, increase sales and create satisfied, loyal customers over a long-term period.

 

Another option for mobile promotions would be apps. In this case, customer behavior dictates the creation of apps. A report by Accenture states that 43% of consumers want experiences that are tailored to their needs and preferences through every engagement channel, including in-store, online and on mobile devices.

 

Landing pages, email and experiences – Working Together

Businesses need to consider mobile-only landing pages. 3.3% of subscribers will view a single email in more than one environment and 61% of users are unlikely to return to a mobile site that they had trouble accessing from their phone – they will only get one chance to get it right!

 

Mobile-only landing pages have to be simple and easy to use – they cant be the same as their desktop counterparts. Transferring content without optimizing it for mobile devices or thinking about the customers experience only results in a cluttered screen and an inability to take action.

 

The importance of mobile-only landing pages is that some contents work well and others don’t. Content that works well is short and to the point, it’s not a lengthy article or a complex form. It is content built for mobile and stripped to a most essential form.

 

Consumers and businesses alike have spoken and mobile marketing is here to stay. There are most definitely some challenges ahead but a lot of marketing methods present challenges.

To be successful, businesses have to understand their customers much more deeply than they may have had to in the past. They must also recognize that their customers are ‘on’ anytime and anywhere. If businesses want to attract new customers and hang on to their old ones they will need to start residing where their customers are and that is in the land of the mobile.

Prepare Your Brand For Google Glasses and Goggles

When the iPhone brought the mobile web fully mainstream it caused a panic that still rumbles on. Many businesses’ websites were not optimised for the smaller resolution screen and many that relied on Flash were unreadable. The next potential disruptor for your online strategy is Google Glasses. Interest is high in the new device but many of the technologies we can expect from it are already out there, such as the ability for users to simply stare at a product or brand and be presented with a web search around it

Ever heard of Google Goggles? Google Goggles recognises brands and images using a smartphone camera. The technology behind Google Goggles is an easy fit for Glasses. There are other apps in the various app store that accomplish the same thing – point your camera at anything be it an ad, a sign or a glass of orange juice and the device will identify the object and bring up a range of links.

Google Glasses, Google Goggles and Your Brand

Essentially what all this means is that you can both prepare for Google Glasses and other devices your customers will be using very simply. We’ve a couple of practical suggestions for you to pass on to your Webmaster or SEO contractor below. The Google Glasses are just the tip of the ice berg in terms of the type of technology that is coming to the mainstream. They might seem a whacky concept now but a phone without buttons might have seemed a little bit nuts six years ago.

 

What You Need To Do

As part of your ongoing SEO you will have optimised the images on your website to be searchable semantically and syntactically. This is achieved by putting them in context on the page and filling in the all important ALT tag. As well as helping those who are visually impaired by having their computers recite the description of the image, the ALT tag helps search engines “know” what is in your image. An audit of how your logo, products and brands appear and the context around them is your first step.

 

Alt tags also enable satirists when pillorying Taoisigh

Alt tags are sometimes abused by SEO minded satirists as this Google Image search for Enda Kenny demonstrates

QR Code Quick Fix

As apps like Goggles can read QR codes these can provide a way to own a visual scan of your product. QR Codes can be as discrete and colourful as you choose and still function. If there’s a sharp upturn in search via visual search apps and devices a roll out of QR codes can help you “own” what the user “sees” when scanning immediately.

What You Need To Ask Your Webmaster and SEO Expert to do

  • Semantic File Names On Your website – a very elaborate way of saying name your logo and brand name in the corresponding file names on your website.
    So if there’s one file called lgov3.png all over your website maybe call it “YOUR_NAME_company-logo.png” instead.
  • Rel tags – rel=”logo” is a proposed standard for telling the visual web about your logo.
    Google are frequently ahead of the curve on such clever ways of quantifying things for machines so it would be worth taking five minutes to ensure your using the tag in your website header.
    For full info on how to define your logo with the Rel tag follow the instructions here.
  • Tell Google – Might seem obvious but make sure you have your Google Places and Google Plus pages sorted out with your logo in situ
  • Get your products on to Google shopping – for retailers this will be a must and will give your listing preferential precedence over other listings.
  • Alt tags – Make sure alt tags include semantic statements identifying brands and logos as they appear on your website.

Ultimately we suspect that Google et al will come up with other clever ways of identifying brands and their associated websites. As always it’s always better to make things easier for Google by following the steps above so that you’ve got the competitive advantage when your customers scan your brand or products with the gadget of the day.

 

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