Types of Videos to Market Your Business

With consumers being inundated with messages, it’s important to have a diverse approach to marketing your business. You’ve heard the phrase “A picture is worth 1,000 words” right? Well, apparently videos are worth 1.8 million words at minimum, at least according to data from McQuivey’s Forrester’s study around “How Video Will Take Over the World”.

That’s not hard to believe in a world where everyone has a smart phone, smart TV, computer, or tablet at their fingertips. Videos allow you to make connections for consumers that otherwise might be harder to do through words, pictures, and audio alone. Which is probably why 83% of video marketers say video’s help them with lead generation, according to optinmonster.com. Feel free to use that statistic when pitching to the executive that doesn’t believe marketing has ROI. 😉

With digital engagement and collaboration at an all time, high there’s endless creativity around what types of videos you can use to market your business. You could say that videos are the Burger King of marketing where you can “have it your way” through using a variety of targeted video.

In the sea of videos, what

Paid Advertising – The Big Tuna

Like tuna, this is common and comes in a wide variety from sushi grade to canned and also can be very expensive. TV commercials and social ads are considered paid video advertising. These videos leverage an existing consumer base and typically require certain parameters. Length: 30 – 60 secs, duration of circulation: 2- 4 weeks, approved script and images: mostly PG13 content as these are platforms that typically don’t have ways of segmenting consumers. These videos are mostly used for organizations with significant budgets as these videos don’t come cheap!

Interviews – Salmon

People know what to expect when they order salmon and you can find it on many menus as well as prepare it at home. This has become the case with interviews with the rise in podcasts as many are now done via in-home studios. That said, like copper river salmon, when it’s on a boutique restaurant menu with an excellent chef, you know you’re in for a treat. The same goes for interviews or podcast videos, when done with excellent interviews and backgrounds and tech teams, the results is superb. These interview videos can take a semi- scripted approached while still allowing marketers to stay on track with pointed messaging. Interviews are a good way to associate people with your brand and, especially, to draw in key consumers.

Vlogs – Sushi Rolls

Like sushi rolls, vlogs are customized and designed for personal taste. These video blogs (vlogs) are more personal and less scripted, allowing consumers to capture the raw reactions and results in real time. These videos by nature allow a lot of freedom for marketers to use raw videos by going live or making multiple versions through editing.

Video marketing also can utilize metrics such as: play rate, shares, and watch time just to name a few!

Sea it in action: CNN

CNN is a great example of video marketing done well. They’ve even dedicated an entire site to it – https://www.cnn.com/videos. If you haven’t caught on the present and future of marketing is in video. Studies show that in 2021 people will spend 100 minutes a day watching online videos which is an increase from previous years. Video marketing isn’t always about selling a product but about creating brand awareness and connection with consumers. So, let videos you create do the around the clock marketing you need!

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Comparing Social Media Management Tools for Businesses

Benefits & Comparisons between top-rated social media management tools of 2020

Comparing social media toolsWhether your business has 2 social media accounts or 25, your life will be much easier if you manage all of your accounts from one place using a social media management tool. In case you’re wondering what a social media management tool is, it’s software that allows you to manage and share posts across multiple social media accounts and includes other tools to monitor and optimize analytics on those accounts. These days, there is a multitude of social media management tools to choose from (some you can use for FREE!), so it can be overwhelming to decide which is best for your brand. In this post, we’ll take a look at some of the best social media management tools currently available to help you choose which will most benefit your brand. To compare these tools, we’ve divided them into categories according to business type and their unique differentiators, including cost.

Top social media management tools for small-medium businesses:

Buffer:

Unique product attributes: With Buffer, you have the capability to create and schedule posts for each social network, all in one place. Account subscribers can produce and share content for Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn, “all from one simple dashboard.” As well, you have the power to analyze the content you put out into the world from in-depth insights and  measure social media performance, create reports and obtain powerful information to grow reach, engagement and sales. Buffer also has an incredible library of free resources across their blog posts on topics ranging from video marketing to tech.

An important factor to account for if you’re considering Buffer is that you can choose between 2 distinctive account subscriptions that are priced separately: content creation and publishing accounts or analytics and reporting.

They also offer a Brand Building account option that includes the best of both worlds, publishing and analytics. Pricing:

Buffer for Brand Building account offers the best of both worlds – capabilities for publishing and analytics priced at $85 per month.

Buffer Publishing accounts: A dedicated content creation and coordination hub.

           1. A Pro account is $15 per month (all of their accounts include a free 14-day trial)           2. A Premium account is $65 per month           3. A Business account is $99 per month

  • Buffer has a FREE account option after your trial of one of their account subscriptions, but it offers dramatically less features. Check out all of their account plans here.

Buffer Analytics accounts: A dedicated social media analytics and reporting hub to measure the output of your content creation.               1. A Pro account of this type is $30 per month               2. A Premium account is $50 per month

Hootsuite:

Unique product attributes: While Hootsuite allows you to manage a variety of social media accounts from one dashboard and create posts on those social accounts with multiple users, their accounts include both content publishing and analytics software, as opposed to Buffer. Notably, Hootsuite frequently offers new features and integrations for users to seamlessly optimize use of the platform, for example:

  1. Hootsuite has over 250 app integrations that account subscribers can apply as 1 complete suite of tools (such as Smart Moderation and Adobe Stock).
  2. As of August 2020, Hootsuite offers users a new competitor-monitoring app called Synapview, which monitors Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Reddit and blogs. Synapview is free for HS Enterprise account holders and $7 for other users.
  3. Hootsuite also offers a Social Selling tool called Amplify, for account holders to sell products via their social channels.
  4. Even if you aren’t subscribed to Hootsuite, the company offers an array of educational resources pertaining to social media marketing and industry-recognized courses and certification programs.

Pricing:

  1. A Pro account plan is $29 per month
  2. A Team plan is $129 per month
  3. A Business plan is $599 per month
  4. Hootsuite offers custom Enterprise options, priced upon inquiry
  5. Hootsuite offers a FREE 30-day trial for their Pro and Team account plans.
  6. There is also a “limited” FREE plan, which, like Buffer, is vastly limited in comparison to the monthly account plans, but seems like a better option than Buffer’s free option (imho). Read more about Hootsuite’s prices and capabilities here.
CoSchedule:

Unique product attributes: If you’re considering CoSchedule, a distinction to this platform is that its subscription service offers a blog calendar which integrates with WordPress to organize your blogging schedule. The more premium subscription option is the Marketing Calendar, which includes the aforementioned blogging tools. The Marketing Calendar boasts itself as a “marketing tool,” which includes task management and email marketing tools, along with the traditional content scheduling across social media channels. There are a number of software integrations included with the Marketing account subscription, including Mailchimp, Bitly, Hubspot and Dropbox. Another major distinction to account for with CoSchedule is that it does not include analytics capabilities.Coschedule product pricing

In all, CoSchedule is more organizationally-oriented and a less technical, in-depth social media management tool than Buffer or Hootsuite. Lastly, I will mention that we at Dekaf Digital currently use CoSchedule and have been happy with its interface and functionality thus far.

Pricing:

  1. A Blog Calendar account costs $14 per month
  2. A Marketing Calendar account costs $29 per month.
  3. Each account option offers a FREE 14-day trial – no credit card required. Read more about their account options here.

Our recommendation: For small to medium businesses, we recommend Buffer for Brand Building.

Buffer product pricing

Here’s why: The breadth of content sharing and analytical capabilities offered by Buffer for Brand Building make for a well-rounded powerhouse of tools to set your business up for success. Compared to the other tools shared in this category, Buffer has the best prices and features all-in-one – it’s a great “bang for your buck,” if you will. Get better acquainted with its benefits here.

Top social media management tools for enterprise-level companies

Sprinklr:

Unique product attributes: Sprinklr is a robust social media management platform or what the company itself refers to as being a Customer Experience Management (CXM) platform. As an overview, Sprinklr offers a multitude of content marketing features beyond social media management – from competitive AI-powered content insights to collaborative content calendar functionality, to ideation insights and analytics, to performance metrics and milestone tracking. The list of subscription offerings goes on for pages, so I would strongly advise speaking to a member of their sales team to ensure you comprehend the depth of Sprinklr’s capabilities before investing. Pricing: Sprinklr only offers pricing information based upon request. Then again, we are online sleuths, so after some online digging we estimate that it runs upwards of $50K+/year depending on features. For serious inquiries, contact them directly here.

Salesforce:

Unique product attributes: Salesforce has a powerful, comprehensive marketing cloud that breaks into separately-priced, highly-customizable, concentrated components for your specific brand needs. The Marketing Cloud system offers a plan for B2B Marketing Automation, Email, Mobile and Journeys, Social Studio, Advertising Studio, Audience Studio, Datorama, Google Marketing Platform and an Interaction Studio. Salesforce also offers an Analytics Cloud subscription, which includes an options called Tableau or Einstein Analytics, each with individual pricing. Pricing: The Salesforce marketing’s plans are so customizable and varied that I would advise you to contact their sales team for serious price inquiries, but here’s a quick overview of one piece of their pricing structure:What Salesforce calls its Social Studio, is broken down into 4 subscription options, not including analytics, which are:

  1. A Basic account costs $1000 per month
  2. A Pro account costs $4000 per month
  3. A Corporate account costs $12,000 per month
  4. An Enterprise account costs $40,000 per month.

Dig deeper into their pricing structure here.

Hubspot:

Unique product attributes: Hubspot, much like Salesforce and Sprinklr, offers an array of heavy-duty digital marketing and analytics tools. The presentation and description of the many Hubspot tools offered between each subscription plan are especially very user friendly, compared to its aforementioned competitors – less industry jargon that could potentially be confused while speaking to a sales person. A user-friendly user experience is key for every company, so I feel that serves as an asset to Hubspot because it is probable that the quality UX will translate across the application and use of the platform. Additionally, Hubspot offers dedicated CMS subscriptions; a completely unique and powerful feature, not offered by Salesforce or Sprinklr. With a custom CMS and the other subscription tools offered by Hubspot, your company can be holistically in control, with cohesive integrations to facilitate collaboration across teams. Pricing: While most other social media management platforms that offer a FREE option tend to hide it in tiny print at the very bottom of the page, Hubspot promotes both its suite of subscription-based software as well as its FREE CRM and marketing tools all in one place; very transparent of the Hubspot folks. Another unique and gracious quality of Hubspot is that it guarantees its FREE features forever, with unlimited users and the ability to save as many as 1 million contacts and companies in your account. Now, a clever company knows humans don’t usually “buy the cow, if you can get the milk for free.” So ultimately, if your company has a serious need for digital marketing growth and analytics, a paid subscription is likely the better call here.The subscription plans are separated into 4 different categories:1. Marketing:  1. The Starter account priced starting at $50 per month  2. The Professional account priced started at $800 per month  3. The Enterprise account priced started at $3,200 per month2. CRM & Sales:  1. The Starter priced started at $50 per month  2. The Professional account starts at $500 per month  3. The Enterprise account priced starting at $1,200 per month3. Customer Service:  1. The Starter priced started at $50 per month  2. The Professional account starts at $400 per month  3. The Enterprise account priced starting at $1,200 per month4. CMS: This is a new option, as of August 2020:  1. The Professional account starts at $300 per month  2. The Enterprise account starts at $900 per month

  • If you need more than 1 of these subscriptions, Hubspot also offers “bundle” subscriptions, which include multiple abbreviated versions of each account type, all in one cohesive account. Read more about Hubspot here.

Our recommendation:A tough choice, indeed – for enterprise-level companies, we recommend using Hubspot’s Enterprise Growth Suite (Bundle).Hubspot enterprise product pricingHere’s why:The range of features included in this bundle (and the others) provide a powerful depth of control and insights for your business. When you do the math, the prices are comparable, but we feel the capabilities are particularly exceptional with Hubspot (did we mention it includes a Service Hub?). And again, the UX on their website was most appealing to us, after combing through details between each of these platforms. Create the best Enterprise Bundle for your enterprise company here. Remember, this is a guide and overview of each of these platforms. It’s important to do your homework while keeping your marketing and analytics needs and budgets at the forefront while deciphering which, if any, of these platforms is best for your brand.
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How To Use Instagram Stories and Instagram TV In Your Business

How To Use Instagram Stories and Instagram TV In Your Business

Instagram video being taken of food

“Am I leveraging social media to the best of my ability?” is a question that many business owners ask themselves. According to Digital Media in Business, “88% of consumers expect businesses to integrate digital assistants as part of the shopping experience, to help them make better decisions.” As businesses use technology as the ultimate digital assistance to reach existing and new customers, social media has become a low-cost channel at optimizing business marketing and one of the newest channels is Instagram.

What’s the difference between Instagram Stories and IGTV?

Reaching up to 112.5 million U.S. users in 2020, Instagram is undoubtably one of the best social media platforms to market your business.

  • Instagram stories are images or short videos that disappear after 24-hours of posting.
  • Instagram TV (IGTV) resemble that of YouTube videos. These videos can be as short as one-minute and as long as 60 minutes. 60-minute videos must be uploaded from a computer but videos with up to 15 minutes of content can be uploaded from your mobile device. IGTV videos remain available for your followers as long as you have an active account.

Although different both options provide value to the users and account owners. Here are tips on how to best use each in growing your business.

IG Stories

Promotions

  • Flash Promotions and limited time information are ideal for marketing on your stories. These are communications that you want to share for a short time but desire an immediate response. Individuals who take an active interest in staying connected to your brand can be marked for more targeted messaging

Follower Feedback

  • Use the ‘Ask me a question” feature to communicate with followers. By encouraging your followers to ask questions you can get testimonials, feedback, and even suggestions that you can incorporate into your product or service.

IGTV

Demos

  • Use IGTV to conduct demonstrations of your product or service to create an increased trust for your business. It also allows followers see the ins and outs of what you’re offering, while building content for future. Edit the demo for short videos that can be used for a future commercial, campaigns and even webinar!

Events

  • People want to feel connected to your brand. Giving followers access to things such as live interviews and events help create a sense of connection at the convenience of your follower.

Image with brand marketing quote women taking selfie

IGTV and Instagram Stories In Action

When it comes to putting these tips into action, here are a few companies that have done it well mixing product promotion with their corporate philosophies.

With 25.8 million followers across the globe, Adidas’s Instagram account has leveraged marketing new product releases, brand ambassadors, campaign’s, and sponsored events. They’ve tracked anywhere from 135,000 to 1.1million views along with follower engagement such as comments and shares.

Honda Motor Company utilizes Instagram to drive their 4.2million followers to exclusive tours of one of the largest private Honda collections in the U.S. and even test drive a car.

Even Proctor & Gamble has built a following of 145K to tackle everything from social justice, to product sustainability tips, and even intimate Q&A sessions with employees and celebrities.

There are two key benefits to both features offered through this platform:

One, it’s an easy 1-step process for followers to repost your content, becoming free marketers for your business, and who doesn’t love free marketing?

Secondly, Instagram notifies the account owner how the activity was received by followers which can be used to drive your next marketing tactics. Hello, free feedback and focus group!

All-in-all, Instagram stories and IGTV create a simple way to do a lot in one platform for your business.

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Maintaining a Small Business During COVID-19


Maintaining A Small Business During COVID-19

Downtown Indianapolis, Indiana looks different these days with many businesses shifting toward working from home or even closing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The hustle and bustle traffic of summer’s past is nothing more than a distant memory; a memory that could become a fantasy as Indianapolis adapts to the new normal.

Surviving COVID-19 as a Small Business

Jody Alexander is the owner of City Nail Bar (CNB), a local nail boutique located on the corner of Market St. and New Jersey St. and has been blessed to be one of the surviving businesses during COVID-19. Since its opening in September 2018, City Nail Bar has been nothing like your typical nail salon. With an intentional focus on delivering high-quality services centered on the sustainability of not only nail care but clients, Alexander explained “I truly pride myself in customer service which is #1 in my book.”

However, CNB’s great customer service didn’t make them exempt from feeling the effects of COVID-19. Closed for a total of 81 days, Alexander learned quickly that being adaptable was critical when evaluating the needs of her employee and clients and more important the sustainability of her business. Alexander applied twice for The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and was awarded funds only after the second attempt. Designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll, and that’s exactly what it did for the CNB staff. Alexander explained “The PPP loan was a major contributor to how we were able to reopen and survive over the past few months. It allowed me to get employees off unemployment and stay current on bills.”

How Digital Marketing Helps Small Business

CNB’s focused marketing efforts have helped enhance high customer engagement while maximizing operations. Before COVID-19, CNB’s primary focus was to market the business and to boost sales of products. Now, Alexander has leveraged marketing to communicate the health & safety precautions to clients with their personalized email templates. Alexander added that “With personal services now being an optional service people need to feel comfortable with those services.” With their email database growing 300+ addresses in roughly 3 weeks, CNB hasn’t missed a beat. Interested clients can have the option to provide personal information and opt-in to receive updates based upon their preferences. They’ve also leveraged it to promote sales, increase bookings by appointment and sell gift cards.

Maximizing Your Client Interactions

As Indianapolis rolled back to Phase 4.5 recently, CNB is only booking by appointment. Alexander sees the positive in this and says, “By not accepting walk-in appointments it allows for each client to be the main focus during that time.” Identifying ways to be more efficient with marketing helps maximize time with the clients. Most importantly, it’s helped communicate some of the following best practices around sanitation such as mask wearing, sanitization stations, and partitions between each client and nail technician.

If you want your business to be featured in our new blog series, contact us at info@dekafdigital.com

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Secret Formula to a Marketing Budget

Determining a marketing budget can be frustrating. Are you investing enough? Are your marketing dollars being applied in the most efficient way? How do you know if what you’re doing is working?  What worked last year, or even last quarter,  isn’t necessarily going to work this year and this quarter.

What the “big” guys spend on marketing

Do you ever wonder what the marketing budget is of major public companies? Here’s your answer to what the big companies spend on marketing as a percentage of total revenue. 

Twitter spends 44%

Microsoft spends 18%

Salesforce spends 53%

Oracle spends 20%

If you’re not Twitter and Salesforce, what’s the target percentage of total revenue to spend on marketing and how do you go about determining your marketing budget?

formula for your marketing budget

The benefits of marketing are clear. All successful companies invest a significant amount in marketing tools and services. A Gartner/CMO Magazine report from 2015 showed major public companies spend more than 10 percent of their total revenue on marketing.  What should you do? The most successful B2C software companies on average dedicate 15 percent of revenue to marketing. 

All industries, on average, do well when they spend 10 percent of revenue on marketing. One study also showed that when companies fall below 5 percent, they experience slow growth or no growth at all.

But as the actual numbers show, there is a direct correlation between a company’s success and its investment in marketing. If you look at the equation of (1 = 10), we’ve found that for every dollar you put into your marketing budget, you will see a return of $10 in revenue, by default.