14 Quick Takeaways From #IMV16, ICYMI

We’ve already arrived in August, and this has been one busy whirlwind of a summer. Between major elections, summer vacations and Pokemon catching, we’ve all had our hands full. Point being, it’s entirely possible you missed out on some quality, free marketing education.

We’ve already arrived in August, and this has been one busy whirlwind of a summer. Between major elections, summer vacations and Pokemon catching, we’ve all had our hands full. Personally, I can’t focus on anything for longer than an hour until I finally get my hands on a Jigglypuff. (Millennials, amirite guys?)

Point being, it’s entirely possible you missed out on some quality, free marketing education. You might remember I wrote a little about the Integrated Marketing Virtual Conference, an event near and dear to my heart, in a post a few weeks ago. The virtual conference in all its expert marketing glory was live on June 23, and now you can access it on demand whenever your schedule clears up until September 27.

In the meantime, I took to the Tweets and compiled some of the best little nuggets of integrated marketing goodness that show attendees took from the numerous sessions and resources offered throughout the day. Ready for some lightning round takeaways and tips? Here goes!

  • Be more responsive than customers expect to create a great customer experience. -Jay Baer #imv2016 #IMV16 — Melyssa, ABC (‏@melyssa57)  June 23, 2016
  • Hug Your Haters! 1/3 of customer complaints are never answered. #IMV16 @TargetMktg — Kendra Morton ‏(@KendraAtAllCom) June 23, 2016
  • A great #customerexperience = exceeding customer expectations. #IMV16 @jaybaer — Polaris Direct ‏(@PolarisDirect) June 23, 2016
  • Kicking off #imv16 by learning about organization haters. Need to answer every complaint in every channel, every time to + customer advocacy — KathyDanielsPearman ‏(@kathyldaniels) June 23, 2016
  • Most customer complaints on social media go unanswered. “Blow their minds and win their hearts” #HugYourHaters @jayBaer #IMV16 #IMV16 — Dani (‏@danidoll11) June 23, 2016
  • 80% of Americans trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, via @jaybaer #IMV16 — Daniel Burstein (@DanielBurstein) June 23, 2016
  • Avg time it takes for a company to reply to complaints on #socialmedia is 5 hrs, but users expect 1 @jaybaer #IMV16 — Sales&Marketing Adv (@SalesMktgAdv) June 23, 2016

salesmktgadv1

  • “Customer service is a spectator sport” … so follow @jaybaer’s rule and don’t feed the #trolls #IMV16 – Nancy Simeone ‏(@100indecisions) June 23, 2016

dontfeedthetrolls

  • [#digitalmarketing] Answering a complaint online can increase customer advocacy by 25%. #IMV16 – Cyfer Solutions ‏(@cyfersolutions) June 23, 2016
  • Solid #marketing intel with @DanielBurstein from @MECLABS. Finding the gaps and exploiting the heck outta them! #IMV16 #IMV16 – Mary Rose Maguire ‏(@MRMaguire) June 23, 2016  
  • Great information about bridging the gap between #marketing and customer expectations in #IMV16. – Kimberly Weitkamp ‏(@k_weitkamp) June 23, 2016
  • According to @annebot at #IMV16, most people start scrolling on mobile before the page loads. – mobilefomo ‏(@mobilefomo)  June 23, 2016
  • Speed is king when it comes to mobile; if you put in the time, you will reap the rewards. -@annebot #IMV16 – WearableFOMO ‏(@WearableFOMO)  June 23, 2016
  • Your content needs to DRIVE customer experiences to truly be successful (and with that comes so much more!) #IMV16 – Sass Marketing ‏(@Sass_Marketing)  June 23, 2016

There you have it, a fresh sampling of marketing granola, perfect for the pro on the go. And hey, when you have an hour or two of downtime from hunting that Geodude or counting how many Pokemon references the media can make in a week (Spoiler: don’t bother, the limit does not exist), you can check out the full show and all its sessions for yourself.

The agenda is full of more than a dozen webinars covering all the marketing topics on your mind in 2016, led by cream of the crop experts. There’s also a fully stocked virtual exhibit hall and resource center, where you’ll find tons of free resources you can download for immediate use.

Go on and have a little click. Totally worth it, I promise you. Let me know if you check it out, or tweet your takeaways with the #IMV16 hashtag to add to the growing pile.

Till next time!

Your Future Is Beyond Advertising

I’ve been covering marketing for almost a decade now between Target Marketing and Catalog Success (not to mention some work with EM+C, All About Email and a few others). One word I say far less than I ever thought I would is “advertising.”

IcebergI’ve been covering marketing for almost a decade now between Target Marketing and Catalog Success (not to mention some work with EM+C, All About Email and a few others). One word I say far less than I ever thought I would is “advertising.”

That’s because, when you look at where marketing is now and where it’s going, it’s clear the future is beyond advertising.

That doesn’t mean advertising — paying to run ads on TV, radio, the Internet, your friendly neighborhood Target Marketing magazine, or anywhere else — is going away. But the universe in which you communicate with your customers and prospects has changed, and so has the role of marketing in the company.

Ads used to be the centerpiece, now they’re just the tip of the iceberg.

The customer journey might start there, but it’s going to run through miles and miles your own emails, content, demos, reviews, social media, direct marketing and customer service. And those extra miles do more to define your brand to those people than any ad ever could.

Going Beyond Advertising

One marketing expert who’s very aware of that is Dr. Yoram “Jerry” Wind, lauder professor and professor of marketing at The Wharton School, founding director of the Wharton SEI Center for Advanced Studies in Management, and primary author of the book “Beyond Advertising: Creating Value through All Customer Touchpoints.”

Wind will also be the closing keynote speaker at the Integrated Marketing Virtual Conference on June 23. And 10 attendees to that session will win a free, autographed copy of the book “Beyond Advertising!”

“Beyond Advertising” is based on a multiyear, in-depth study of marketers and agencies throughout the world designed to learn how marketing will look in 2020. The conclusion they came to is that marketers are going to need to be able to manage the customer experience to create value across all their touchpoints with your company.

The book gets into the forces of change that you can harness to propel your company where it needs to be, as well as the mental models that you need to challenge because they stand in the way of change. And Wind will talk about those during the keynote, too.

Wharton Value Creation Model
This all touchpoint value creation model is step three in the Wharton Beyond Advertising Roadmap, and puts the emphasis on creating value for your target customers, rather than brand messaging.

What I want to focus on here is the all touchpoint value creation model that emerged from this study, outlined in the image at right.

The core idea of the model is that someone needs to be orchestrating the elements of your company that touch the customer, which is very nearly all of them.

If you align your products with the goals and community orientation of your target customers, provide a unifying brand focus that rallies the people in your company with those goals, and orchestrate all of your customer touchpoints to deliver experiences that reinforce that focus and help your customers reach those goals, then you are creating value for your customers at all touchpoints and become more than just another commodity in their lives.

In this model, you’re emphasizing the types of interaction that add value for your customers, and advertising represents just a couple of those touchpoints.

You can hear more about the M.A.D.E.s and R.A.V.E.s in the interview I did with Wind earlier this year.

http://bcove.me/4raqv74j

What it all comes down to is marketing is becoming more important to companies and customers, while advertising itself is becoming a smaller part of it. Thus: The future of marketing lies beyond advertising.

What skills do you need to make sure your marketing, and your career, are effective in this new situation? Click here to register for the Integrating Marketing Virtual Conference on June 23 and hear it all from Jerry Wind himself. And if you do that, you’ll automatically be entered to win a free, autographed copy of “Beyond Advertising”!

I hope to see you there.

Direct Mail Is Back

Last week during my IMV15 presentation for “Direct Mail Is Back” we had some questions that we were not able to get to. So we wanted to address them in this blog post. If you have your own questions feel free to reach out and ask them.

Last week, during my IMV15 presentation for “Direct Mail Is Back” we had some questions that we were not able to get to. So we wanted to address them in this blog post. If you have your own questions, feel free to reach out and ask them — or leave them in the comments below!

Here are the questions we didn’t get to:

URLs on the mail piece: We used to be able to use “friendly” URLs, but our webmaster has discouraged it due to the way search engines penalize the site with multiple URLs landing in the site. What kind of URLs do you include?
We create and register a new site for each campaign. That way, the multiple landing pages are not part of our normal website. We do offer links to materials on our regular website to drive traffic there and provide more content. This is sometimes referred to as a microsite.

What would you recommend as a price point for a good direct mail piece as far as expense is concerned?
This is hard, as so much of the cost depends on what you are doing. So, instead of giving you prices that may not reflect what needs to be done, let’s look at what is the cheapest direct mail. That would be a postcard mailing to local recipients all near each other. This gives you the low cost of a card and the low cost of local postage. Specific prices will vary depending on your service area and your provider.

Are there metrics available that demonstrate a significant lift using DM as a precursor to digital follow-up (i.e. email) that justifies the extraordinary increase in costs when using DM?
That can be a challenge, as every list will have a different result. Your best bet is to run a test on your list. Knowing your results from your last campaign, you can then see if you had an increase in response or an increase in purchase amount. Who your recipients are and your offer are going to be major factors in your statistics, and can be dramatically different than a quoted statistic. Here is a case study on adding email to direct mail.

• Where can we learn more about augmented reality in marketing?
Check out these sites for more information on augmented reality:

  1. http://www.dmnews.com/augmented-reality/topic/8147/
  2. http://www.imediaconnection.com/content/35895.asp#multiview
  3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JYd0by0PbNI
  4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vDNzTasuYEw

Augmented reality can be really fun for recipients, as a couple of the above examples show. The cost to start this is very high, but if you do it right, you have the potential to reach many more people than you had on your mail list.

• Are QR codes really utilized much today? I feel like they are outdated already and no one uses them anymore.
It really depends on your audience and your offer. The two states with the most QR Code scans are California and Texas. So if you are mailing there you know that people are open to the idea of scanning a QR code. The best way to know if they are going to work for you is to test them. On your next campaign add the QR code and see what happens.

As direct mail is back in favor with many marketers now, you need to be even more vigilant when creating your direct mail. The only way that direct mail will continue to work is if we as marketers, send direct mail to consumers that is designed well, has a clear call to action and is targeted to the right people. This keeps recipients happy and increases your response rates.

The Difference a Word Makes (Or Doesn’t?) in a Subject Line

(Note: You have to read this in your best Movie Trailer Voice.)

In a world where subject lines dominate … can one word truly make a difference? One copywriter sets out to learn just that …

Okay, you can go back to your normal voice now. This probably doesn’t actually rank up there with the most dramatic endeavors I’ve ever encountered, but was a pretty interesting test for future reference, and I’d love to know if anyone has done similar experiments and gotten similar results.

Last week, we started promotion of our annual Integrated Marketing Virtual Conference for 2015. First, I just want to note that for the first time, we incorporated video into our regular email campaign. We had Thorin, the editor-in-chief of Target Marketing, record a short “video invitation” to the virtual event, and linked to the video in the email blast.

It was an easy and engaging way to promote an integrated marketing event with, well, integrated marketing. I’ve included it here so you can see what it looked like. All in all, a very successful effort.

Video Email for IMV15

But, as always, without a good subject line no one would even make it to the well-designed HTML. So our question was, how much of a difference might it make to tell the recipient outright that they’d find a video in the email? Would it make a difference at all?

A/B tests to the rescue: We tested two subject lines, evenly split, and they were identical aside from one word.

Version 1: See why you need to be there for IMV 2015!

Version 2: See why you need to be there for IMV 2015! [Video]

Any guesses as to which did better? I assumed Version 2 would have, reasoning that people might be more excited to watch a video clip than read what might just be a block of text.

Here’s how it actually shook out: Version 1 (See why you need to be there for IMV 2015!), nudged its way to victory with an open rate .6% higher and a viewed image rate also .6% higher than version 2 (See why you need to be there for IMV 2015! [Video]). Their click rates were exactly the same.

So in actuality, more people were compelled to open an email that did not tout some sort of video. My theory is that it may have simply read a little more like a casual greeting, and a little less like a promotion. However, I also feel these numbers are just a little too close to draw a firm conclusion, and this question would be best answered by looking at the results from at least a few more attempts of the same experiment.

Have you noticed a difference in subject lines that mention video (or any other specific form of media,) vs. those that don’t? I’d love to hear what you’ve tried and observed.

(In the meantime, don’t mind my little shameless plug — please check out Integrated Marketing Virtual Conferencelive from your desk on August 13, and totally free!)