Archive for December, 2011

How to Be a Successful Anti-Engager

Posted in Social Media on December 13, 2011 by wolfwomyn

Dan Zarella’s “Science of Social Media” Webinar inspired a recent post by Facundo Villaveiran at Channelship’s Video Blog about the known “truths” of “winning” at social media—and the realities that may or may not match them. Below are a few of Zarella’s insights about how some anti-engagement tactics might actually get the engaging results you seek.

These aren’t silver bullets, but they may merit experimenting with your strategy to see if Zarella’s results stand up.

Don’t just comment; share content. In an experiment, Zarella discovered that engaging in comments at your Facebook page doesn’t draw more views—but sharing lots of interesting links in your comments does. (By all means engage in conversations; just don’t rely exclusively on that to draw traffic.)

Use “information voids” to your advantage. Researching unanswered, seemingly abandoned, questions, and producing content around them can do wonders for traffic. Track Twitter’s trending topics or Google Zeitgeist. Seek mysteries and address them head-on.

Publish on Fridays and weekends. People get less email during down times, streams are less cluttered—more visibility for you! (Don’t abuse this window, but it can come in handy when you have something great on the pipeline.)

Don’t mistake social “proof” for impact. Zarella A/B-tested two blog posts with different “tweet buttons”—one fixed to zero tweets and the other showing 776 (the number of times that content was allegedly “tweeted” or shared). The post that had the least social proof, as opposed to the most, was shared the most. “When it comes to sharing, nobody wants to be the 777th person breaking the news,” Villaveiran says.

The Po!nt: Don’t limit your prospects for engagement. Try a range of social tactics, and track your results to learn what works best. Your discoveries will be invaluable—not just for your company, but for your reputation as you share and leverage your ever-growing social savvy.

What Your Email Campaign Can Learn From Direct Mail

Posted in Small Business, Social Media on December 6, 2011 by wolfwomyn

“Though direct mail certainly isn’t as popular or as effective as it once was, email marketers can apply many of the theories used for direct mail campaigns to increase the value of their email marketing campaigns,” writes Ryan Morgan in an article at MarketingProfs.

For one thing, a direct mail piece and an email both need to make a strong first impression. That’s because a recipient sifts through her email in the same way she sorts direct mail: making arbitrary, snap judgments about what she’ll read and what goes in the trash.

A plain white envelope with an unfamiliar return address won’t intrigue her—and neither will its generic email equivalent. So give her a subject line that piques her interest, a “from” address she trusts and an appealing, eye-catching mix of text and graphics, Morgan advises.

Beyond that, he offers this direct-mail-inspired advice:

Give your subscribers something of value. This might be monetary (a discount), informational (a how-to guide) or an opportunity not available to everyone. “I want to be an insider, and I want to feel special,” Morgan explains.
Be considerate of their frequency preferences. This is where you can learn something from direct mailers who may not get it right for each recipient’s preference. Morgan wryly notes that “you could probably build a small home out of ‘20% off’ coupon postcards from Bed Bath & Beyond.” But email marketers have an advantage in the frequency debate: They can simply ask subscribers how often they’d like to receive messages.

The Po!nt: Email is direct-to-consumer, too. Although direct mail might not be a part of your marketing mix, understanding its principles could help you improve your email campaigns.

Source: Get to the Point / MarketingProfs.