Start Thinking of Your 2016 Marketing Plan

Dec 15, 2015 | Consultancy

By Elvire Gosnold, Director – Blabbermouth Stop – you can’t go out celebrating Christmas just yet. You need to think about your 2016 marketing plan – it does not write itself. I have listed below some pointers you may find helpful to include in your plan. Be realistic – what are your business goals as a whole and how do you plan to measure your success? Marketing ROI can be tricky to measure, so think now how you will analyse your activity. It is helpful to include details of when these targets should be met so the wider team has a solid timeframe to work with. Here is the fact that surprises many – marketing is not free in terms of money or time. It is wise to budget for each activity you plan so that you give the project a fair chance but equally, don’t go spending a disproportionate amount to what the possible return could be. I find that so many people are very keen to write weekly blogs, but in reality everyone is busy with their day job. Monthly blogs are a more realistic target and one that the team are more likely to reach. Think about the whole project and what the extra costs could be. If you are sending out a personalised gift for example, it is not just the gift you have to budget for. It’s the postage and packing, the analysis of who to send to and the tracking of the customer or prospect journey after they receive the gift. And finally, make it clear to the team who is co-ordinating each...

What Makes Your Brand Influential?

Dec 2, 2015 | Branding

By Elvire Gosnold, Director – Blabbermouth Earlier this week, the Guardian reported that Microsoft was revealed the UK’s most influential brand, which got me thinking… what makes a brand influential? They tend to be companies that inspire, inform and motivate their audience. With the Internet being already saturated with content, becoming an influential brand is a great challenge for many companies. Often a brand will influence the way we live through technology, with many brands seen to be trendsetters and innovative. Compare the Market is a key example of a brand which has taken insurance to a whole nother level! The meerkats have become a brand in their own right, which encourages audience engagement all-year-round as opposed to just once a year when a policy is up for renewal. Brands, such as Compare the Market, impact the way we behave, shop and think, and here’s how: Understanding the target audience – marketing campaigns are tailored, relevant and specific to a particular audience, which is key to ensuring maximum engagement. Being online and social – staying active online and interactive on social media is a fantastic way to increase influence on the internet. Even Aleksandr Orlov the meerkat has a Twitter account! Being unique – getting the brand noticed and shared helps build a brand story. Providing relevant content – by producing content that your audience wants to see or by offering a solution to a problem is an essential way of increasing an online influence. Your brand is such a valuable part of running a business. We regularly run Brand Workshops here to help companies understand what their brand...

Pushing the Virtual Workforce Concept

Sep 21, 2015 | Other

By Elvire Gosnold, Director – Blabbermouth It will come as no surprise to you that some of our work at the agency is focused on promoting hosted telephony and explaining the benefits of cloud based technology to end-user businesses. The agility of a workforce in constantly improving and employees are even expecting employers to offer flexibility in hours and geographic areas to improve work / life balance. This got me thinking about how far marketing agencies can push the virtual workforce concept. When discussing briefs and presenting concepts, I find that so much feedback is based on body language and non-verbal cues. Plus the enthusiasm of the design and marketing teams are so important when explaining the thoughts behind marketing activity and bringing projects to life. Can conference calls really capture the vision of the marketing team or the true reactions of the client? Brand personality is a large factor in reinforcing messaging and maintaining brand consistently.  Call me old fashioned but I find actually visiting the offices of clients and meeting the team and seeing their environments first hand gives me the clues and pointers I need to ensure that the desired corporate perception is not way out of kilter with the reality. The upside of home working and multisite working is that teams can comfortably work at client offices or on the train so that design briefs especially, can be relayed immediately after client meetings so that the passion and the original plans can be relayed to the design team as fresh as when they were conceived. Agency teams can now spend the working day at client...

Are Your Databases Clean?

Jul 21, 2015 | Other

By Elvire Gosnold, Director – Blabbermouth Dirty databases are on the up! New research shows that an increasing number of consumers are intentionally giving false information to mess up databases. The main reasons are that they have concerns about their privacy and are getting fed up with adverts everywhere they look. The stats are an interesting read and some reasons for dirtying the data are rather entertaining (source: Verve). The top reason is to protect their privacy but here are some of the others. ‘To track how companies are using my information’, ‘To prevent online advertising’ and ‘Because I like messing up company databases’. Whilst these are primarily focussed on consumer marketing it is worth keeping in mind when you are carrying out your own call-arounds to verify data. Maybe you are cleaning up a purchased database or investing the time in building your own. It is worth remembering that one third of people admit to giving fake email addresses. Companies need to focus more on educating or at least persuading individuals to part with their details and that of their colleagues. Why should the receptionist confirm that the IT Director still works there and that his email is still correct? What benefit will they receive from helping you validate and collect data for your own gain? Brand recognition and an understanding of your company’s USPs will help with this conversation. Clear messaging on how your company can help theirs is a starting point for building trust. Sharing information in the form of blogs and white papers further reinforces that your company is knowledgeable and that information sharing is a...

Case Studies

Jun 23, 2015 | Consultancy

By Elvire Gosnold, Director – Blabbermouth Case studies are an area that the Blabber team and I are being asked to produce at an increasing rate. This growth area is great for the agency but also a marketing activity I am in full support of and I think very helpful for the comms industry. We are seeing an increasing number of our reseller clients wanting to focus on verticals. Case studies are a perfect way of demonstrating how they understand the requirements and indeed feel the pain of the comms challenges these specific industries experience. In an industry that is driven by technology, and therefore sometimes difficult for key stakeholders to understand or indeed get excited about, a case study can cover the areas that do pique their interest – most often money saved and client satisfaction. With fresh and relevant content being so important for SEO, case studies deliver the requirements for informative content on web sites and encourage site traffic. Traditional case studies are very popular but we are also seeing an increase in video case studies, again adding in movement to your website improves your Google rankings. Video case studies further encourage the viewer to engage in the messaging as the visual storytelling is often easier to digest and the addition of music and voice overs also increase the chances of prospects wanting to know more. As always though, it is important that you not only have great case studies but that you promote them. I find lots of people have thought hard about the content of their case study but give little thought about how...