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Happy New Days!!!

12/2012

ImageYou’ve read by now tons of predictions for 2013, trends based on past years and last year. Only, all that is based on the time the human being has defined on his own, from the very first second we can “touch”, feel, to the century you cant even touch on your own. Why that? Do we need to measure the time to better control it? To feel reassured? To live with, to make plans, to conclude from the experience made if this “time” was “good” or “bad”?

All this thinking process is purely theoretical dear friend, since the first second you count is a human invention. What is “good”, what is “bad”, what is “extremely good”, to you, to your family, acquaintance, for the humanity?

The maybe only thing we could consider is love. Love just drives respect and peace. All around is pure human invention, comes and goes, only an intrinsic value, including time.

Don’t try to catch the time, you’ll never catch this hypothetical thing, never, no matter how best you measure it. Better build on your feelings, walk on the path of your heart, you’ll never make something wrong and you’ll never have regrets later on.

Lets believe the essence of our hearts is “good”, and it will be good, as simply as that 🙂

Happy New Days!!!

“Don’t do what you love”, and I say no…

07/2011

(Reuters) – Making what you love into your actual work can inspire great dedication and a sense of meaning, but sometimes that passion can make you miserable, or worse, says Harvard Business Review.

Let me take the 3 HBR statements one by one and discuss:

“1. It’s not your strength. You may love to do something you are just not good at. Because it can be hard to self-assess, ask for frank feedback from those around you to know where your strengths are.”

When you love something, you might be bad at the beginning but then and very quickly you become a master in that field just because you love what you do and you spend most of your time concentrating on what you love 🙂

It is indeed hard to self-assess, but you don’t need to since you do something with passion, your passion just transgresses all barriers and is perceived as very positive at the other end, you just motivate people with what you do. It is just like an actor performance…

“2. You’re too emotionally attached. Passion may cloud your judgment. When you care deeply about something, it can be hard to be take criticism or let others get involved.”

Again, passion clouds your judgment indeed but you don’t need to judge yourself at this stage but rather enjoy performing what you do love.

Criticism is always a difficult thing to accept, whether it is by doing something you love or just doing anything…

I don’t think at all that it is difficult to get others involved in what you love if you think positive. I would rather personally have the whole world involved in what I love, it would just be soooo exciting to share and feel the same feeling as plenty of others: there is so much room in what we love.

“3. It’s a hobby, not a job. Sadly, you can’t be paid for everything. What you love may not be lucrative. Instead find something you like that pays.”

Nope, a hobby can become the best job ever. What we love may not be lucrative at the beginning, but again here’s passion plays its role… Up to you to make it lucrative the best way, you might be very creative here since it is what you love. Remember there are lots of businesses that we wouldn’t think being so lucrative a couple of years ago…

If I follow the overall statement, the conclusion would be: “Do what you don’t love”. Do you really believe that you would be successful that way?

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Classic marketing is dead

01/2011 1 Comment

Classic marketing is just courtesy, in other words it is dead.

  • All the classic marketing tools do not apply to the online world and must be adapted.
  • All the classic marketing outputs (printed material) are slowly disappearing because of costs, obsolescence and the always shorter life cycle (how long can you use a brochure or flyer until it becomes obsolete?).
  • All the classic marketing strategies must also be revised, or better re-invented upon the latest technologies and trends. As simply as that: you cannot reach your audience today with any of the classic marketing strategies.
  • Market research and analysis must be redefined upon new trends and technologies. Yesterday, your audience was acting and reacting upon habits that are no more actual today. Therefore your today audience might be essentially different from the yesterday’s one.

Furthermore:

  • Advertising agencies must revolutionize their work in order to remain on the market
  • PR agencies must prove their effectiveness across borders if they want to survive, because today everyone can play the writer at no cost

But also your website!

If you designed our website 2 years ago, it is fully obsolete today if you miss the point to integrate any of the communication tools. In other words, your website today should look like an online magazine designed for your audience.

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I don’t like landing pages!

01/2011 1 Comment

A landing page is by definition a page where your visitors arrive after clicking on a link. It can be your home page or any other page specifically designed for a campaign. Today, most of marketeers agree to say that to make a landing page work, you should provide a customized sales pitch for your targeted visitors. And the best way to do that is to generate a single unique page that delivers your dedicated message so that:

  1. You have a captive audience, you keep your visitors focused, you build trust with them and send them straight to the lead capture form.
  2. You can control where the visitors are coming from through a specific transaction such as sales, registrations, etc.
  3. Your chances of engaging the visitors goes up, as well as your conversion rate.

From there, I can read millions of blogs stating that a high conversion rate is almost guaranted, assuming you follow the “well crafted” single landing pages’ rules…

But here I say NO!

It might be indeed that visitors are inclined to buy from a single well-written page about a well-known product referring to a sales promotion, but in B2B, I doubt this will be working!

A single page doesn’t sell

I definitively agree to the fact that the visitor who sees a link that matches to his inquiry does click on that link and expects a page that refers to his specific inquiry. If the page is too vague or if he has to look around for information, he will definitively leave the page. Having said that, if he clicks on a link that goes to a well-crafted page and the only step further on that page is a form to register for anything, do you think he will buy in from there?

A B2B sales process takes months… A single well-crafted page doesn’t sell at all. Once the visitor has read the page, the next step is to read about the company that delivers this product or service and to read about references. So where and how can he find this type of information from this single page? A product or service has first to be credible, no-one can trust a single product or service without knowing about its background!

Now, if the visitor has to get out of this page over the web, on his own, to find some essential information (product/service background, references), you will then lose this visitor and lose your tracking. Even worse, personally as a visitor I am fairly annoyed by any obvious sales pitch page today and I like to judge a service/product not upon a single page with a sales promotion but upon a validated consolidated information.

In other words, a single landing page is like removing one page from a brochure and trying to sell with this one page.

Back up your offer!

Now, create within your website a well-crafted dedicated page for your product/service or specific campaign and send out the direct link. You will capture your targeted audience the same way, but from there, your audience will easily back up your offer by reading further about your company and references. Then set-up the tool to invite the audience to send their details on this specific page.

Don’t lose your visitor for ever!

It might be as well that your visitor first thinks from a dedicated direct link that he might be interested in but after reading the single page then thinks that it is not what he was looking for. By providing a single page, you take the risk to definitively lose this visitor because he will have nowhere else to look at, just one single proposal. Here instead, if your visitor is directed to a page of no interest within your website, you’ll still have a second chance to attrack him on another page of your website, and who knows, he might buy in for another product/service.

No brand building?

A single landing page runs against all your brand building efforts. At the end of the day, you want your brand to be remembered and strongly recognised. Build a campaign on a single landing page and you will lose the effects of the long-term image built on your website.

Dedicated pages should not die

Life of the single landing pages is also an issue. Did you think about the visitors that say no at first reading for any reason but then have an interest a couple of weeks later and want to retrieve this single page? If this page is part of your website, you’ll get this visitor back.

A customized link too

As for the direct talkative link for the page you want to drive visitors to, you can today very easily use most of your short link vendors who also offer the service not only to shorten your link but also to customize it. Here again, no need to create a single landing page for a direct customized link.

Add dedicated pages to your website, multiply your chances to capture your visitors and build your brand awareness at the same time.

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King of eCommerce but bad responsiveness

12/2010

I am referring to this article: “Why Amazon Doesn’t Understand Social Commerce” by Leigh Duncan Durst published in November 2010:

  • “How a pioneer in e-commerce has not been keeping pace with the changes in social media
  • How Amazon fails to respond to fans and foes alike
  • What not to do when confronted with a PR nightmare

“I began writing this article on November 8, after a series of interactions with Amazon.com. Two days later, a furor erupted over Amazon’s sale of a self-published book titled The Pedophile’s Guide to Love and Pleasure: A Child-Lovers Code of Conduct. The book has been described as a guide for how to approach young children. TechCrunch was the first on the scene with an article, followed shortly thereafter with a second article, calling national attention to the issue and denouncing the retailer’s decision to defend the presence of the book under an “anti-censorship” argument. The articles triggered public outrage, resulting in a backlash via digital, social, and major media, including calls for a boycott. Unfortunately, the attention also worked to drive the self-published book to the Top Sellers list, although Amazon later removed the book and adjusted the rankings of other adult content on its site.
(…)
It would be a disservice not to point out that Amazon was a game-changing leader in social commerce well before the social media frenzy and hype of the past several years.

But the Playing Field Has Changed

Today, the site-driven “rating,” “tell-a-friend, “add to list,” or “write a review” are commodity functions found on any good shopping site. On the Internet, the standalone Web presence is giving way to the networked economy, as interactions and transactions scatter across multiple hubs. Websites are now interconnecting via open source or open API to other sites, tools, apps, networks, and communities. People don’t just interact with people, products, and brands, they like them, follow them, and friend them—forming tangible relationships—without leaving the digital space they’re in.”

More at: Why Amazon doesn’t understand social commerce

From CreateColours:

Indeed, Amazon has been the pioneer in the eCommerce world and it is amazing now to see how they can handle basic troubles towards customers’ feedback. Amazing that they are so slow in acting and reacting and facing online issues. I just cant believe this really, although I perfectly know and understand from previous experiences within major corporations how difficult it is to react to change, since the whole company should move at the same time. It is just like trying to get some 100 elephants moving a foot forward in synchronicity all together. You cant basically change strategies and their respective processes from one day to another and get all your 50.000+ employes adopting those rules at the same time. But Amazon should tackle its issues really not by the time it occurs on the medias but at its roots. Due to its innovative strength in eCommerce, Amazon shouldn’t belong to the slow new social media adopters. Amazon should have put resources upfront to adopt, test, try those new social media tools. They cannot neglect or ignore all what happens online as the king of eCommerce. I consider this as part of their job.

Now to be constructive, there are very innovative tools indeed today that at least allow to be aware of any negative feedback floating on the web about your company. Those tools not only detect keywords but also manage those results so that they end up on the desk of the responsible person within the organization. I strongly believe that those tools are key to any organization today. It is really worth investing here, it saves time and resources and the issue is corrected in a very short and professional manner before any escalation. Organizations should realize indeed how crucial it is to access to any (negative) feedback almost immediately. A week could basically ruin a company’s image today because of the flow of information running within seconds across the world.

For more information about the technology solutions I referred to, please just comment this blog here or drop me an email at christine.ferrere@createcolours.com

Twitter: the 3 basic strategies

12/2010

Your Twitter account: Did you think of the basics?

Having seen millions of twitter accounts until now and of course those from my dear friends and followers, I’d like to give you here some basic advices to help you be part of the Twitter game.

  1. Your avatar: Twitter allows you freedom and creativity here, only the given size is quite small. So you have several possibilities:
    • Yourself: unless the pic is good and friendly and clear enough to be seen in a small size, I would avoid it. It has to be an eye-catcher, otherwise you’re not going to be seen at first place when people use search tools and go through huge lists.
    • Your company logo: unless it is a well-known company, again I don’t think you’re gonna attrack people with something unknown, small text, etc. Make your logo smaller, use one letter for example. Remember, you can always place your company logo on your twitter page as a design.
    • A picture of anything, an eye-catcher, a simple, easy to remember graphic, or also a play with colors. I wouldn’t even necessarily relate the picture to your business…
  2. Your bio: How many people just put anything here as a text at first place, even worse, sometimes nothing at all… Although the most important thing people are going to read from you, are those few characters. Rethink it, make it appealing, clear and go to the point. Think of keywords to speak to your target audience.
  3. Thank-you: Don’t forget to thank each follower with a direct message and use this direct message to advertise yourself again with a link and a few personal words. This “thank-you” message is yet another chance given to you to talk to this follower.

Happy following!

Time to get rid of your traditional website

12/2010

Just disappointed those days to visit different websites, even more when these websites are conceived by marketers marketing them as innovative people, but the websites they own do just expose facts in a very boring way. Just contradictory with themselves indeed when they don’t even offer the visitor a way to communicate with them, invite them to easily ask questions or just call.

Today, we have so many brilliant communication tools to make your website lively and very different from others. And most of those tools are free. Today, we can share a lot of content and opinion with your target market and position yourself that way as a valuable person/company to follow. Just make your website new with content and update this content as often as possible, you’ll be amazed to see how many people will come, read, stay there for more than 30 seconds and will come again!

The websites from yesterday were like printed business cards you hold in your hand once and then put it away in a box somewhere and never see that again. You just forget about it. It is so easy today to change the layout or write content and get your target audience to engage. Just put yourself in your target audience shoes and consider what would be interesting for them/you to discover and read, and update the content of your website accordingly.

Finally, traditional websites were supposed to provide an actual content on everything, so please just start with rule #1 and be up-to-date with what you sell. Last for the marketers: avoid telling the world you’re the king of communication if nobody can communicate with you through your website and/or you don’t even refer Facebook or Twitter which are the basics.

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