Successfully Market Your Business For Just The Price of a Cheeseburger and Fries

Successfully Market Your Business For Just The Price of a Cheeseburger and Fries

Overview
With pandemic shutdowns, the ‘great resignation’ (leading to millions of start-ups*), supply chain disruptions, and increasing inflation, it’s been tough to bring in new business.

We’ve seen many small businesses, professionals, and independent contractors struggling to either jumpstart sagging sales or get a new business off the ground. Many have considered hiring a marketing agency, a marketing consultant, or adding to staff but that can be expensive when budgets are tight and talent is limited. In looking for a way to help the business community that has been so good to us over the years, we came up with the idea to write ‘Ready-Made Marketing.

Take the guesswork out of marketing.
Designed to help people succeed, the book is a quick and easy DIY marketing resource that enables those who don’t have marketing expertise (or the money to hire it) to market themselves, their services or their businesses and start seeing immediate results. Ready-Made Marketing is not about writing marketing plans or strategies; it provides practical, customizable templates for a variety of business-building situations, step-by-step instructions for using proven and effective marketing tactics, and over 400 technology resources that are affordably priced or free.

Abbreviate what you have to do to lighten your workload.
The book is action-oriented; it’s not a novel to read through nor does it require a major time commitment. For example, if you need to write a cold email, you can choose from a variety of templates or if you need a video script, you just go in and pick one. Or if you need a technology resource (e.g. video recording software, content creation tools, podcast hosting, among others) you can select from 21 categories or use the authors’ choices.

FREE OFFER…Quick Links to Technology (Click Here)

Whether you’re starting a new business, want to increase revenue for your current business, or know of someone who needs to jumpstart sales, this book is a game-changer.

To make 2022 a better year, check out Ready-Made Marketing.

 

*According to the U.S. Census Bureau:

  • In 2020, there were more than 4.4 million new businesses; the highest total on record.
  • This is a 24.3% increase from 2019; 51.0% higher than the 2010-2019 average.
  • ½ million new businesses were started in January 2021 alone.

 


BersonDeanStevens has been a recognized brand strategy and marketing leader for over 25 years, including over a decade in marketing and sales automation. We work in partnership with you to differentiate your brand and achieve your business goals. Client list.

 

 

Most Important Martech Features [Report]

Most Important Martech Features [Report]

As companies continue to increase their investment in martech, especially in North America, making use of all these technologies as well as having them work together efficiently is a hurdle many firms are still working on. Two-fifths (39%) of the 265 marketing professionals surveyed for a Ascend2 report say they are currently working on implementing a martech stack strategy, while 1 in 5 (19%) are still developing such a strategy.

Most Important Martech Features

When creating a martech stack optimization strategy, improving marketing efficiency is a key priority for more than half (55%) of those surveyed. Marketers are also hoping that optimizing their martech stack will help with improving customer experience (51%), which is an area for which more than one-third (35%) of retail marketers feel their marketing technology is currently doing “very well.”

Although many marketers set increasing marketing ROI (45%) as a martech optimization priority, fewer cite improving marketing personalization (29%), improving attribution of revenue (27%) and improving data management & security (26%).

Notably, improving marketing efficiency is not only the biggest priority for marketers when it comes to martech stack optimization; it’s also their most challenging barrier.

Important Martech Stack Features

Beyond the priorities and challenges of optimizing their martech stack, what features are marketers looking for in their suite of tools? One of the most important features for implementing a martech stack is data insights and analysis (51%). At the same time, finding people with skills to properly analyze the data provided has been an issue for companies for some time.

Marketers also place importance on features such as real-time processing (40%), data centralization (34%), scalability/flexibility (31%), multi-channel experience (30%) and, to a much lesser extent, artificial intelligence (14%).

Systems integration was cited as one of the most important features for implementing a martech stack by 46% of respondents. That said, integration of disparate systems was low on their list of priorities, with only one-fifth (19%) citing it as a key priority to be achieved by a martech stack optimization strategy. It is also considered to be a challenging barrier for more than one-third (36%) of those surveyed.

In fact, many marketers feel that to optimize their marketing, the technologies in the stack need to improve ease of use (52%) and integration with other technologies (38%).

Martech Investment

Only 14% of marketers say they are not planning to invest in their martech stack this year. Conversely, 7 in 10 say they will continue to invest moderately (49%) or significantly (22%). This comes after earlier data from Ascend2 found that 2 in 5 marketers are investing in more martech on a quarterly basis.

Separately, research from Merkle has found that larger companies (those making at least $200 million in pre-tax annual revenues) are outsourcing about 43% of their marketing technology operations. In this latest study close to two-thirds (62% share) of marketers said that a combination of outsourced and in-house resources is the most effective for implementing martech optimization tactics, with few (24%) preferring to rely on in-house resources alone.

Downloaded the full report.

About the Data: Results are based on a survey of 265 marketing professionals from B2B, B2C and B2B/B2C equally companies. The survey was fielded in January 2020.


Is your martech investment delivering what you need? For assistance with your tech stack, schedule a call or email Lori Berson at lberson@BersonDeanStevens.com.

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BersonDeanStevens has been a recognized brand strategy and marketing leader for over 25 years, including over a decade in Marketing Automation. We work in partnership with you to differentiate your brand and achieve your business goals. Client list.

 

TikTok Ad Formats and Campaign Examples

TikTok Ad Formats and Campaign Examples

It’s been one year since the Chinese-owned TikTok video app launched in the US, and the app has exploded into a cultural force.

Much of the app’s popularity in the beginning could be attributed to its hashtag challenges, in which users film themselves lip-syncing or dancing to short audio clips about trending hashtags. The short clips can originate from anywhere: it might be a snippet from a song (which can go on to live in a Spotify playlist of popular TikTok songs), the audio from a Vine (RIP), or a clip from a viral YouTube video. The best challenges might get edited into TikTok compilations on YouTube. It’s all part of a beautiful content circle of life.

Technically, TikTok has been around for longer than a year, just in different forms. Its creator, Chinese startup ByteDance, has been operating the short-form video app Douyin since 2016. There was also Musical.ly, an app with the same creative, silly energy that ByteDance purchased in 2017. But it wasn’t until last August that Musical.ly was relaunched as TikTok for the rest of the world. TikTok promoted the #posechallenge to get people started, writing, “OK, you got 15 seconds and 6 poses to make an impression,” and teens dove right in.

TikTok has capitalized on the viral nature of its platform by partnering with a number of brands and slowly unveiling several advertising capabilities.

To reach a a younger audience, TikTok announced a multiyear partnership in early September with the National Football League (NFL). Tom Brady, the six-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback of the New England Patriots, posted for the first time on his TikTok account, sharing highlights from his first week of the season.

Brady and the NFL join other US brands that are hoping to reach younger consumers through TikTok. Below is an overview of TikTok’s current ad offerings and some of its biggest brand partnerships to date.

Ad Formats

Though the video app has yet to roll out all its ad capabilities—such as augmented reality lenses and full-screen video ads, as listed on its website—some early adopters are testing select formats.

Brands like Guess and Chipotle Mexican Grill have partnered with TikTok on sponsored “Hashtag Challenges,” which placed branded hashtags on the app’s Discover page. Food delivery app Grubhub was testing video ads on TikTok as early as January 2019, and fashion retailer Hollister Co. ran a series of in-feed video ads last spring. TikTok has also become a popular platform for influencer marketing, especially for brands looking to work with the platform’s up-and-coming video creators.

TikTok confirmed that its hashtag unit was still the only ad product officially available in the US, but it is conducting early experiments with other models. Last month, sponsored hashtags were expanded under the name Hashtag Challenge Plus and now include a shoppable component within the app.

NFL

TikTok announced a multiyear partnership with the NFL that will allow third-party brands to sponsor content on the NFL’s TikTok account. When the announcement was made prior to the 2019 season, the NFL began posting using the hashtag #WeReady. Although the NFL told AdAge that it did not pay to promote the hashtag, the organization plans to use the Hashtag Challenge feature in the future. The NFL also hopes to generate user engagement by inviting fans to create TikTok-centric content to support their favorite teams and players.

Ralph Lauren

As the official outfitter of the US Open Tennis Championships, Ralph Lauren was one of the first brands to use TikTok’s shoppable Hashtag Challenge Plus feature to show off its collection for the 2019 tournament. The challenge asked TikTok users to post a video wearing Ralph Lauren products using the hashtag #WinningRL. At the end of the contest, creators of the top three videos with the highest engagement were awarded free US Open gear.

Macy’s

The department store kicked off the back-to-school shopping season by bringing its omnichannel “All Brand New” campaign to TikTok using the platform’s Hashtag Challenge. The challenge encouraged students to post videos wearing back-to-school outfits, and if users tapped on the hashtag, a “Shop Now” prompt appeared above Macy’s official videos linking to its website.

Kroger

For its own back-to-school campaign, Kroger became the one of the first brands to use TikTok’s shoppable Hashtag Challenge Plus feature. The grocery chain promoted its #TransformUrDorm campaign, which encouraged college students to show off their decorated dorm rooms. Similar to Macy’s, the campaign allowed users to tap on the sponsored hashtag, which led to a separate Explore tab showcasing Kroger products and direct links to its ecommerce channel.

Chipotle

One of TikTok’s most notable US partnerships was with Chipotle, which worked with the video platform twice on hashtag challenges. For Cinco de Mayo, the restaurant chain asked fans to post their best “lid flip”—where users flipped an aluminum dish lid onto a Chipotle plate and then used the hashtag #ChipotleLidFlip—to promote its free delivery offer. The brand went viral on TikTok in August when it announced a new challenge, #GuacDance, which became TikTok’s highest-performing branded challenge in the US.

Ready to test TikTok? For help with all your social media marketing, schedule a free consultation or email Lori Berson at lberson@BersonDeanStevens.com.

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BersonDeanStevens has been a recognized brand strategy and marketing leader for over 25 years, including over a decade in Marketing Automation. We work in partnership with you to differentiate your brand and achieve your business goals. Client list.

TikTok Ad Formats and Campaign Examples

Marketing Automation Features and Benefits

Marketing automation empowers marketers to focus on the strategic initiatives rather than get bogged down with the tactical implementation, and it aligns sales and marketing towards accomplishing common goals. This all adds up to decreased costs and increased revenue.

FEATURES

Campaign and Email Management

Create and track highly targeted marketing campaigns. Manage end-to-end email campaigns, including database management, target list creation and segmentation, email personalization, and SPAM-compliant auto unsubscribe capabilities.

Website Search Engine Optimization

Connect with your customers early in the buying cycle with search engine friendly pages.

Landing Page and Forms

Create dynamic landing pages and forms. Build reusable templates to create a consistent look and feel. Instantly create leads in your CRM system for immediate sales follow up on all form submissions.

Lead Reporting and Analytics

Get comprehensive insight into your marketing programs by program type, lead source, and promotions — in real-time. Seamlessly track lead-to-revenue to measure the ROI of your lead generation programs.

“91% of the most successful users agree that marketing automation is ‘very important’ to the overall success of their marketing across channels.” —Ascend2

BENEFITS

Effective Multi-Channel Campaign Management

Streamlines the execution of complex marketing campaigns across multiple channels, including websites, email, events, and social media with a centralized marketing platform.

Improves Sales Collaboration

Aligns marketing and sales goals to improve collaboration and convert leads into customers.

Shortens Your Sales Cycle

Delivers highly relevant dynamic content to prospects at the right time, right place and right channel, guiding them through the buying cycle.

Quantifies and Prioritizes Leads

Captures, identifies, scores and nurtures leads based on profile, behavior, interests, and conversion readiness to deliver sales-ready leads.

Real-Time Visibility

Provides insight into campaign performance and return on investment (ROI) with robust analytics.

To learn how to best use Marketing Automation to increase ROI, check out this article.

As a recognized Marketing Automation leader for the past decade, we work with firms to help them utilize their marketing technology to increase revenue. To see how we can help you, schedule a free consultation or email Lori Berson at lberson@BersonDeanStevens.com.

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BersonDeanStevens has been a recognized brand strategy and marketing leader for over 25 years, including over a decade in Marketing Automation. We work in partnership with you to differentiate your brand and achieve your business goals. Client list.

TikTok Ad Formats and Campaign Examples

5 Strategies to Improve Your Marketing Campaigns

Here are five marketing strategies you can use to improve your marketing efforts across multiple channels, messaging, and execution.

1. Determine whom you want to reach.

Before creating any messaging, channel development, etc., you need to determine which audience segment you want to target. It’s best to create marketing personas to define these different groups of people. With each persona, determine the characteristics of this subset. What are their likes and dislikes? Where do they live online and offline? What are their common challenges and pain points? By defining these audience attributes, you can more accurately target your marketing to them.

2. Tailor your campaigns to your personas.

Customize your marketing campaign messaging and research the channels in which you send these messages — according to your audience’s preferences.

For example: During your research, you may have discovered one client segment that doesn’t read print media; for this segment, you’ll want to develop digital-only materials. Use the appropriate channels to reach your target audience(s) to ensure the maximum exposure and engagement.

“Best in class marketers are 67% more likely to use a Marketing Automation platform and see 14% overall growth in marketing revenue.” — Aberdeen

3. Leverage trigger marketing.

You now know whom to talk to and where, how about when? If your customers receive your campaign at the right moment in the buyer’s journey, they are more likely to be receptive to your message. Trigger marketing sends emails or campaigns at specific points in a customer’s engagement lifecycle and can significantly increase your chance of success. Marketing Automation facilitates these efforts.

“Triggered email messages average 70.5% higher open rates and 152% higher click-through rates than “business as usual” marketing messages.” —Epsilon Email Institute

4. Test your campaign performance.

Build tests into your campaign plans and measure what’s working and what isn’t.

For example: Test what channel works best, how your web pages and emails are performing, what time of day or day of the week you should publish content, etc.

Additionally, you should conduct A/B tests on different headlines, page designs, calls-to-action, button and text colors, and email subject lines. Control your tests by limiting the variables being evaluated at the same time. Test and track the results continuously.

“63% of surveyed marketers indicate that the ability to set measurable objectives for each of the campaigns is the biggest value driver of Marketing Automation.” — Gleanster

5. Measure your results.

After you’ve conceived, created, and launched your campaign, you must track your efforts. This can be done with a simple Excel chart or a more robust dashboard. Make sure your Key Performance Indicators (KPI) tell the story of your campaign.

“91% of the most successful users agree that Marketing Automation is ‘very important’ to the overall success of their marketing across channels.” —Ascend2

Once you’ve started testing and tracking, it’s time to assess and refine your campaign. Based on your findings either repeat or delete the campaign.

For assistance with your campaign strategy, Marketing Automation implementation, and optimization, contact Lori at 877.447.0134 or lberson@BersonDeanStevens.com.

TikTok Ad Formats and Campaign Examples

What Marketers Look for When Considering Marketing Automation [Study]

Marketing Automation Study

According to an Ascend2 survey, marketing influencers say that they primarily use a marketing automation integration strategy in order to achieve objectives such as improved campaign effectiveness (57%) and alignment between sales and marketing (53%). And on the whole this strategy is paying off, as 95% of respondents say their marketing automation integration strategy is either somewhat successful (55%) or very successful (40%) in achieving these set objectives.

This success has led marketers to put their dollars behind marketing automation – as is the case with marketing technology budgets generally. Almost two-thirds (64%) of the 277 professionals surveyed project a moderate increase in their total budget (which includes time, resources and expenses) to integrate marketing automation into their overall strategy, while close to one-quarter (23%) expect their budget to increase significantly.

Marketing Automation Considerations

What do marketers consider before investing in a marketing automation system to integrate?
First and foremost, more than half (53%) look at the total cost or pricing model – showing that even as spend is likely to go up, it’s likely to be carefully considered.

Ease of use and the learning curve is another important factor that almost half (47%) of respondents consider, while 4 in 10 say that analytics and reporting are also important. Taking these two factors into consideration makes sense considering findings from a Spear Marketing Group survey which found that, for B2B organizations, marketing analytics is one of the most difficult skill sets to hire for.

Marketing Automation Benefits Unlikely to be Immediately Realized

Prior research has found that marketing automation is successful in achieving KPIs such as:

However, according to Ascend2, that success will likely not be immediate. In fact, more than half (54%) of the respondents believe that a reasonable time-frame for seeing the benefits of marketing automation integration is 6 to 12 months. That being said, some respondents feel it should take less time, more than one-third (36%) saying that the benefits of integration should be realized in 6 months or less.

Those surveyed said they use revenue generated as a metric to measure the benefits of their marketing automation integration, while slightly more than half (52%) use customers acquired. Conversion rates are another important metric used by 44% of respondents.

Some lesser-used metrics include sales accepted leads (29%), MQLs (28%), cost-per-lead generated (14%) and open and click rates (6%).

Challenges to Success

A lack of alignment between marketing and sales is still an issue for many organizations despite it being something that most marketers and salespeople think can be remedied. Improving marketing and sales alignment is also a critical challenge to the success of a marketing automation integration strategy for about half (49%) of respondents.

The same percentage of respondents also say a critical challenge is improving quality lead generation, while 45% say they feel improving campaign effectiveness may be a challenge. Improving marketing-related metrics (31%), marketing attribution (23%), data governance/hygiene (17%) and data systems centralization (16%) are also seen possible obstacles to success.

About the Data: Ascend2 surveyed 277 marketing influencers and marketing research subscribers during the week of June 17, 2019.

To learn how to best use Marketing Automation to increase ROI, check out this article.

As a recognized Marketing Automation leader for the past decade, we work with firms to help them utilize their marketing technology to increase revenue. To see how we can help you, schedule a no-obligation call or email Lori Berson at lberson@BersonDeanStevens.com.

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BersonDeanStevens has been a recognized brand strategy and marketing leader for over 25 years, including over a decade in Marketing Automation. We work in partnership with you to differentiate your brand and achieve your business goals. Client list.