8 Questions About the GDPR You Need to Ask Yourself

The GDPR is only a few months away and if you haven’t begun questioning your organisation’s data handling methods, it’s time to begin. If you’re unsure of What GDPR is, then see our recent blog post about it here.

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The GDPR isn’t far away and a number of organisations need to ask themselves serious questions about their data and their customer acquisition strategies. The below questions would be a good place to start.

1. When is the GDPR Coming Into Effect?

The GDPR has already been approved and will move into legislation in May, 2018. Meaning, following this date your organisation can (and more than likely will) be fined for not following the new rules.

2. Whom does the GDPR Affect?

The GDPR applies to organisations within the EU, and organisations outside the EU if they offer products  or services within EU borders. It applies to all companies processing & holding the personal data of ‘data subjects’ residing within the EU.

3. What is Personal Data?

Any information related to a natural person, also referred to as a ‘data subject’, that can be used to directly or indirectly identify the person. It ranges from a name, photo, email address, bank details, social network posts, medical information or an IP address.

4. What type of consent do you have?

Ensuring you have the right consent from your ‘data subjects’ is a key change within the GDPR. From May, 2018, organisations must have unambiguous consent from their ‘data subjects’. This is key if you are sending marketing or sales material which will be to a great extent outlawed without unambiguous consent.

5. Do I Need A Data Protection Officer

A Data Protection Officer or ‘DPO’ MUST be appointed if you are in public office. The likeliness that SME’s will need to appoint a DPO are high. If your organisation handles/manages more than 5,000 personal data records per year, you will need to appoint a DPO.

6. What are the Penalties?

Companies can be fined up to 4% of annual GLOBAL turnover or a total of 20 Million Euro’s.

7. Are there any circumstances in which the GDPR doesn’t apply?

There are circumstances the GDPR does not apply. These are only in extreme cases such as protecting national security, criminal investigations and public health matters.

8. HOW CAN I MINIMISE RISK & PROTECT MY BUSINESS?

Manage how you collect data and ensure you have ‘unambiguous’ consent from the the data subjects in your database. Make sure the email marketing & marketing automation platforms you are using are either EU based or following the GDPR tightly, otherwise you will pay the non-compliance fine.

What is GDPR & Why should you Care?

The GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) has finally been passed by the EU parliament in April 2016 and it will become enforceable on the 25th of May, 2018.

That’s all well and good, but what is it and how is it going to affect how you do business?

What is GDPR?

The GDPR is a new legislation passed by the EU Parliament and replaces the Data Protection Directive of 1995 of EU, and national privacy protection acts (like e.g. Personuppgiftslagen, PUL, in Sweden). The purpose of this is to help synchronize varying data protection laws across Europe with the ultimate aim to protect the integrity of the individual, and provide a more competitive environment.

The hopes of doing this will allow EU citizens to have better control over their personal data and provide greater direction to organisations on how they can use that data.

This is a HUGE DEAL!

For an individual or if you are in a business where you want to compete with others who lock the data of their end-users in. However, it’s also becoming a board-level question as the level of risk for any company NOT complying with the new law will go up significantly: Infringement of the GDPR from May next year will set you back up to 4% of your annual global turnover or max €20 million euro’s. These are huge penalties for any organisation.

Does your organisation have a CRM?

Possibly, a database of customers that your sales team turn to everyday? A system of excel files where you store the same type of data?

If you do, then the passing of the GDPR is relevant to you, yes, you. 

Do you use survey tools? An ERP-system? E-mail tools? Marketing Automation tools?

Yes, then it’s applicable to you, too.

So any non-compliance by your organisation needs to be fixed before the legislation kicks in. So how can you prepare for the GDPR? Well, first you actually have to know some background about what will be applicable to you:

Do you store data in the cloud?

This is what happens to Cross-Border Data Transfers

When the GDPR comes into place, cross-border data transfers will be permitted, however the country that the data is transferred to must be compliant with GDPR regulation. So for example if your data is stored in the USA or you are using an email marketing/survey/CRM/marketing automation system which host their data servers in the U.S. then your data will not “legally” be allowed to transfered to that country unless the cloud service you’re using is registered under a particular Privacy Shield framework.

Even when you are just crossing a border, even within EU, you are most likely submitting your data to the scrutiny of national and possibly other intelligence agencies, whether legally sanctioned as FRA of Sweden or FISA of the USA, or as simply run by most if not all national intelligence bodies.

This is making more organisations who store data in the cloud need to take action.

The Right to Know and Right to Be Forgotten

Under the GDPR, private individuals will now have the right to know the data stored about them, and they have the right to be forgotten by organisations. This means that people can not only request to be “unsubscribed” from your mailing list, they now have the right to be totally forgotten within your database (ie: deleted). If the reason for your collection of the data will have an end-date (such as it’s only applicable to store certain information during a campaign run under a particular time, or during the start-up of something), then all systems will need to have the possibility to auto-clear the data.

The Right to Port Data

A user will have the new right to port all data about him or her from one organisation to another. What does data porting mean? It means you could more easily transfer data including e.g. historical activity from Facebook to Google+, or from one electricity provider to another. The purpose is to make it easier to compete.

The need to report incidents

Previously, you could have a data-breach and even if you likely try to do all you can to remedy it, from the onset of the GDPR, you have the obligation to report it to your national Data Protection Authority within 72 hours.

The New One Stop Shop

The GDPR will now be the only place for businesses to turn to in regards to data. This hopefully will make things cheaper to work within the EU, as you will no longer need to comply with all 28 individual EU states.

As time marches on towards May 25th, 2018, it really is time to begin your organisational preparations towards becoming GDPR compliant. Whether that is changing the location of your database servers, ensuring you have email consent from your contact database, or building/increasing your contact database in preparation of the incoming legislation.

Over the next next few weeks we will be writing a lot on how you can best prepare your organisation for the GDPR, as it has to be both an opportunity, and an area of actions for you and your organisation, make sure you stay tuned!

What Sonician Learnt at the B2B Marketing Expo in London!

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This week, members of the Sonician team headed over to London to exhibit at the annual B2B Marketing Expo, at the Excel in London.

Once we heard about this event we thought it was an unmissable opportunity for us to go and show off Otto & Volley Marketing as well as bring back some of the exciting developments in the B2B marketing world. What we really were looking to accomplish was to find UK partners as we are looking to launch both Otto & Volley Marketing in the UK in June, 2017. Looking back at the experience, we definitely didn’t believe that we would be able to come away with meeting so many great people and learning about a lot of fantastic new products, technologies and services.

The event was bursting with some extremely interesting keynote speakers and with very insightful seminars on a wide range of topics. All three of us really tried to get around the expo and see as much as we could! But of course, with such a big expo and so many great exhibitors, visitors and speakers, it was difficult to accomplish.

The organisers of the event also requested us to hold a 30 minute seminar on Business Intelligence and how that can improve your Customer Acquisition Cost. This was definitely one of the highlights for Sonician being able to help executives, marketing managers and small business owners get a grip of the possibilities of business intelligence to improve their customer acquisition costs.

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To say that we had fun would be an understatement!

There were a few big changes we noticed within the B2B Marketing field, but one everyone seemed to fall back on was successful online conversion. We met many SME’s which are well aware of the impact digital transformation is having on how customers make purchases. This seemed to be causing much stress & uncertainty for marketing managers to keep up with the evolving sales process.

The major concern was that their marketing activities, up until this point, are not being tracked. So either their executives were demanding more metrics to prove the success (or failure) of their marketing activities or they realised themselves that they were possibly wasting money. This seemed to be driving a lot of the discussions throughout the seminar and within our own stand.

 

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Our Commander in Chief, Henrik Rudberg, returning from a succesful day 1 at the expo!

 

Another point that really stuck out over the two days in London was how the customer sales process has fundamentally changed.

While this may seem obvious with the development of mobile technology and the internet, we talked with many visitors and exhibitors that were concerned about this.

In particular, this seemed to hit suppliers very hard. There were many suppliers there, looking for options to get ahead of their competitors. Many of the suppliers had stated that their own customer retention rates were quite poor because of the easy access to other solutions. The ability for the customer to do their own supplier research was making it increasingly difficult for these suppliers to find a way to add value onto their orders.

We were able to relate to many of the challenges these marketing managers and suppliers saw since this is what we often hear from clients, colleagues and friends.

At the same time, we believe it is a true fundamental change that should not be seen as something negative from a supplier’s perspective, but rather evidence of turning tides that need to be embraced:

It is no long possible for anyone to rest on their laurels, but everyone has to make sure to convey a proper and transparent image, and make sure to not fall behind its competitors, and it will ultimately be to the advantage of the client. Having said that, it also obviously makes it more difficult to compete with local, high-level services, much as the construction of big malls in the outskirts of cities will also drain city centers of specialized smaller local stores. It does mean everyone will need to develop a strategy to be able to handle it.

It wasn’t all doom & gloom while at the expo, one of the biggest upcoming trends was content. Adapting a content marketing strategy seemed to be one of the biggest trends for reaching out to potential customers.

Many of the speakers spoke about using content to reach out directly to their customers and communicating your value.

A highlight for some of us was the seminar held by Jason Miller, the Global Content Marketing Leader at LinkedIn, he provided a very insightful seminar on how consumers are consuming content in a distraction filled world.

All in all we had a fantastic experience at the B2B Marketing Expo. Over the next few weeks we will provide in depth outlines of how the preparation to the event was and provide some case studies inspired from the event.

 

Meet us at the B2B Marketing Expo in London!

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Sonician is off to exhibit at the B2B Marketing Expo in London 27th-28th of March, and we’d love to meet you there!

Excitement is really beginning to build and anticipation is in overload as it is now less than 2 weeks until Sonician heads off to London for the B2B Marketing Expo at the Excel Convention Centre in London.

The B2B Marketing Expo is hosted by the Prysm Group which is the biggest independent event organiser in the UK. They have been hosting and organising events since 2001 and since then have blossomed into organising some of the best and biggest events in the UK including:

  • Restaurant Tech Live
  • Sales Innovation Expo
  • The Business Show
  • Going Global

Sonician is excited to not only get involved with all of the exhibitors there but to learn as much as possible so we can pass what we learn on to you, our readers, and hopefully meet some of you there?!

We hope that we can come back from such a big event to help you achieve your marketing goals in the B2B world, and keep our blog content up to date and relevant.

We were also invited to speak at this expo so we are also hoping that we will be able to pass on some of our knowledge and help the exhibitors and visitors with reaching their B2B marketing goals.

We will be sure to take plenty of photos while we are there and report back on what we learned. We are also writing a case study on how the expo has gone for us. The point of doing this is so that we can help you, our readers learn from either our mistakes or what has worked well in the lead up to the event and during the event.

So make sure you stay tuned to the Strategic Marketer as we report back from the B2B Marketing Expo in London, and don’t hesitate if you think there’s any trend you think we should keep an extra eye on for you!

 

How to use Google Analytics to improve your Online Customer Experience

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If you’re not using your Google Analytics to improve your customer experience, you’re not doing it right.

Google Analytics has been all about using  data to improve your website for…….the website visitor. (Hopefully, along the way you will create benefits for yourself as well).

If you’re into selling something, then your website visitors will often be an existing customer or a potential customer, but no matter what kind of website you have and what you want to accomplish, you will likely have both returning visitors and those who come for the very first time, but let’s look at customers and potential customers primarily.

So with this in mind, you need to begin using your data to improve your customer experience immediately.

Why use data?

Because human kind is now storing more data than ever before.

According to Forbes, we have created more data in the past two years than the entire history of the human race before us.

Think about that for a second.

There was more Data from 2015-2016 than the whole existence of the human race prior to that.

Now, once you have wrapped your mind around that, start thinking how valuable that data can be to all businesses if you just know where to look.

From small businesses to large multinational corporations, having access to data can be extremely valuable.

Data can influence product development decisions, sales decisions, and, most importantly within this context: Marketing decisions.

Data has become the new 21st century Gold Rush.

Whoever has the most data and take advantage of it wins.

Think about what you click on everyday, what web pages you look at, what you purchase online.

This is all tracked and stored by Google, your web browsers as well as the website owners.

So if you haven’t been using the data that you have available to yourself to improve your customer experience it’s time to start.

OK,

I know what you’re thinking…..

Where do I begin Meme

 

How would you begin? That’s your question….right?

Or How can data make my customer experience better?

HOW?

Well, initially you need to have a deep and thorough understanding of the existing customer experience in your organisation.

Without having this foundation, you won’t be able to follow up on any improvements within your customer experience strategy.

Many customers and website visitors might only see you as some random potential supplier, and potential customers don’t accept excuses. There isn’t any room anymore to make mistakes, or the visitor will just leave for someone else.

You have one opportunity, and first impressions DO matter.

Potential customers have a world of other options available at their fingertips, so why would they need to stick with a firm that provides a poor customer experience?

This is why customer experience matters.

Therefore the importance of having a relevant and beneficial customer experience is important in generating more sales, driving customer retention and boosting brand loyalty.

The Tempkin Group (who had recently focused on improving their customer experience) said this in one of their annual reports:

“Customer experience leaders have a 16% advantage over companies that fall behind in consumers’ willingness to buy more, their reluctance to switch businesses & suppliers, and their likelihood to recommend you to another.”

So obviously focusing in on the customer experience doesn’t just matter, it is important.

But how would you improve your customer experience using data?

Well, we can begin with the platform that the majority of organisations are using ….. Google Analytics.

This is your first step into the world of data, and it’s even free.

The first place to begin your customer experience journey would be to check the people that are visiting your website.

(Hopefully, before checking the data you need to have an idea on what your target market is and who your typical buyer personas are)

Obviously, you want your website visitors to match up as closely as possible to your target market.

Let’s find this out!

The place to begin would be assessing your audience.

Audience

Have a look at the geographical information provided by Google Analytics & drill it down into the cities your website visitors are coming from.

Google Analytics City Drill down

 

 

Think about personalising your website towards the city/country that you receive the most website visitors from.

Framing your website towards the demographics of your audience is pivotal in taking the first step in developing a solid customer experience strategy.

Keep in mind all countries have different Internet practices.

This has been studied and referred to as “Cultures of the Internet” and obviously many aspects of your website will change how certain cultures view your webpage.

For example, if a certain nation has a speedy Internet connection and high Internet usage (countries such as USA, Finland, South Korea) they may have higher expectations of the design and functionality of your webpage.

So the next step is to check whether your website visitors’ interests match up to your buyer personas.

If you’re not sure what your target markets interests are and where to begin with this information, then Google Analytics provides “Affinity Categories” which outlines interests (pre-determined by Google) that your website visitors have.

This is based off the website visitors previous internet usage and their individual Google searches.

 

Affinity Category

Taking it to the next level!

 

The next step would be adjusting your customer experience towards how you acquire your website visitors.

Website visitors from different acquisition channels may behave differently on your website.

As an intuitive example if you are offering a professional service aimed towards sales individuals, you may find more success with visitors via LinkedIn rather than Instagram.

LinkedIn users may have more of a use for professional sales services rather than the average Facebook users.

To be more precise, a website visitor acquired via LinkedIn will for them have a higher “Commercial Intent” when compared to a website visitor acquired via Facebook.

Work together

What was mentioned above is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to using Google Analytics data to improve your customer experience.

Use all of the information available together to improve what the website visitor experiences. Make improvements in your overall customer experience and boost customer satisfaction along the way.

These adjustments are something that cannot be ignored! Make sure you take action before your competitors focus in on their own customer satisfaction levels.

Join us for a 1-1 Meeting to help you with your Google Analytics Data.

Because you don’t want to have poor customer experiences.

www.sonician.com/survey/2mintest/

7 Tips to get Website Visitors to Complete your Call-To-Action

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Recently, I was having dinner with a friend. He is a small business owner and we were discussing the infamous ‘Call-To-Action’.

He was going on to say that he doesn’t get it.

Doesn’t get what all the fuss is about.

&

Doesn’t get the difference between forms and call-to-actions.

He was very traditional in his approach to making sales and doing business. Not so traditional that he couldn’t see the benefits of using technology to make sales, but I think he just enjoyed the more traditional method.

So after this conversation it got me thinking about what the specific definition of a call-to-action is. So it was time to do some research….

The Call To Action Definition

In marketing, a call to action (CTA) is an instruction to the audience designed to provoke an immediate response, usually using an imperative verb such as “call now”, “find out more”, or “learn more”. 

 

So I then sent over this definition to my friend accompanied with my own 7 tips to help boost the success of his call to action.

I then realised that these 7 tips shouldn’t just be reserved for my friend and I should share these conversion boosting tips with the Strategic Marketing readers!

So without further a due here are:

“7 Tips To Get Your Website Visitors To Complete Your Call To Action!”

 

1. Have Compelling Copy-Writing

As it explains in the above definition your call to action needs to make use of some great eye-catching and action provoking wording. Using words such as:

  • New
  • Because
  • Secret
  • You

2. Use Images in Your Call To Action

Using images helps to direct attention to the call to action, and it can drastically improve the Click-through rate (CTR). Not only does it create a more eye-catching call to action, but it can also help trigger an emotion.

As an example, using a stock image of a person expressing an emotion has been proven to significantly improve the click rate on that call to action.

WHY?

Because using a human expression allows the reader to directly empathize with the image and therefore the CTR will be improved.

 

3. Use Statistics in your Call to Action

Statistics & facts will make your instruction impressive and credible, but also trigger curiosity.

Let’s face it, people just love juicy stats and facts.

You may just see your call to action results soar trigger its own nicer CTR statistics.

 

4. Keep it Short & Simple

When creating your call to action, making it as brief as possible can be huge. Ideally, no more than 5-6 words.

This causes the user to not get too confused with the CTA or with what is being offered. This also reduce the number of objections to completing a CTA.

 

5. Offer some sort of reward or benefit

This has begun to become very common practice so I briefly thought about leaving this one out, because it has become so popular, if it would just be a fad. But, using some sort of reward or as some might say “carrot” for completing the CTA will likely always trigger some more actions.

The most successful form of this is offering a form of content for free. Some of the more popular varieties are:

  • Ebooks
  • Whitepapers
  • Video sessions or Webinars
  • Consultation Sessions

 

6. If it’s a form, don’t make it too long

This is easy.

Don’t make your website visitors fill out too much information too early.

At the beginning of a relationship you can’t ask for too much.

 

7. Make your Button look like a “Button”

There is nothing worse than having a CTA button, that doesn’t look or feel like a button.

Website visitors are now subconsciously trained to know what “is” a button and what doesn’t look like a button, and the button itself will trigger the desire to get to know more.

So make sure that your button is designed like a button. Leave white space around it, have a simple button text (eg: Find Out More), usually rectangular (can have rounded edges, not a triangle).

 

Time for you to Test!

I highly advise that you take these tips, apply them (all at once or one at a time) and see how they impact your call-to-action conversion rates. Make sure you have the before and after data via Google Analytics so you can make intelligent decisions for future changes for now and for the future.

Some serious experimenting is the key to improving your online conversion rates, so just go ahead and test different colours, different button texts, different shaped buttons etc.

My last piece of advice is:

Test Everything!

 

 

Your own next step in Lead Capturing?

If you think improving your online  marketing is important for you, I would suggest you try out our very own 2-min test here from us at Sonician in order for you to figure out if Marketing Automation could be for you. You’ll find it directly at: www.sonician.com/survey/2mintest/

Case Study: Improving Bounce Rate while keeping a High Conversion Rate

 

Case Study

 

Quick Question

Put your hand up if you have redesigned your home page around your form or call-to-action?

Ok, quickly put your hand back down so everyone in your office doesn’t think that you’ve lost your mind.

But seriously, I have chatted with many small and medium sized businesses and they all express the same frustrations that online conversion is that one thing that continuously makes their lives difficult.

The difficulties of ensuring your form is in the right position,

the copywriting is up to scratch,

the form isn’t too long,

the colour of the button is optimised “for clicking”, etc……

So what do these businesses do? They go out and they arrange their front pages around their call to action.

This is generally recognised as a fantastic plan. It’s something that I have recommended to a few clients, to determine the highest converting place on your web page and work your website content around that.

The one thing that does suffer when you design your web page around the web form is the website content.

If everything is based around converting the web visitor to take them to the next lead nurturing step, then obviously your home page’s content may not provide the instant “catch” to your visitors which in turn means users are leaving straight away, without even stepping inside. In web-geek terms we say that your bounce rate has gone up.

So what to do about this dilemma?

Below I am going to outline a case study in which we helped a client with their home page web-form, but upon adjusting the form they saw their bounce rate increase.

The case study briefly demonstrates what can be done to improve the bounce rate, while keeping the conversion rate maximized.

Case Study

In this one particular case we have Peter who runs a niche company with this fantastic little solution for their specific market. Since they have competitors with alternatives that are more well-known, they want to fly under the radar as much as possible about how well their sales is actually doing by using good follow up sequences which will nurture their leads. This is very applicable to many other companies in similar situations though.

When we started to tweak the conversion rate to make it go upward, we saw the bounce rate increased from 36% to 51% over a 3 month period when we adjusted the web form placement on the home page.

Now in this case Peter was fanatical about his website data and was a keen observer of his Google Analytics. So when he noticed this progressive 42% increase or 15 percentage-points above what his steady rate had been, he made sure we knew about it.

So, the next step for us was to ensure that his conversion rate had improved, which it had, from a 3,7% to 10,4%, so it had increased by up to 3 times. So while his bounce rate had increased he had seen an improvement in his conversions.

WHEW!

 

Image result for whew meme

 

 

Time for some brainstorming!

Our first step was to check what effect the increased bounce rate had on the overall website.

So we began by checking if the bounce rates on any of the other pages had gone up.

The bounce rates on the following pages hadn’t gone up by any significant number.

However we had noticed that because the bounce rate on the first page had gone up that the number of sessions and users for each of the following pages had fallen.

In simpler terms, the other pages were having less traffic due to the higher number of bounces on the first page.

On top of this, the average number of pages per session had also fallen from a healthy 3.2 down to a 2.8.

Therefore while he was converting more overall, the subsequent pages which had all of the juicy information about his solution had become less important.

So following this analysis of his data and his website, we proceeded to draw up a plan on how we could help improve his bounce rate while also keeping the improved conversion rate or (hopefully) improve it further.

 

Steps to Improving Bounce Rate (while keeping an awesome conversion rate!)

Step 1: Change the text formatting

The first step we took was to change around the text formatting on the first page.

Having large blocks of text scares website visitors away, unless they have a high interest level.

So to do this we spaced out the text and increased the size of the text font. This then makes the whole page seem more appealing to website visitors to stick around and engage with the content.

Step 2: We improved the In-linking

With the improved text formatting we decided to encourage the visitors that land on the home page to visit other pages.

We did this by adding ‘Learn More’ buttons and text links within the content.

 

Image result for learn more buttons

 

Adding links and prompts to have visitors easily move from one page to the other, we hoped would improve the traffic of visitors flowing from one page to another.

 

Step 3: We added a video to the home page to improve visitor engagement and encourage people to sign up!

What we then did was analyse the Peter’s blog and we found which blog post had the most engagement.

We then took that blog post and turned it into a quick 2 minute video (something far simpler to do than people think). We made sure the video was personal, informative and encouraging to sign up to understand his solution so much better.

The reasoning of doing this was to re-package some already successful content and turn it into a platform to drive visitor engagement.

In order to maximise the “real estate” of the  homepage, the actual video had now taken up most of the space rather than the call to action form.

So we decided to use one little function we had developed some time ago here at Sonician.

So what did the function do? To have a dialog form at the completion of the video so you can say in the video what the user should be doing: Fill out the form!

Hallelujah!!

Since we don’t have Peter’s, here’s my own illustration on how it works, watch what happens at the end of this 23 sec video:

…THERE, the vid’s up!
Now, this was just to illustrate how it works, BUT… If you’d like to see how it could work for you, I’d be happy to show you for real if you leave your details:



As you can tell, a quick 10 min video production might work in this case, too… :)

The results in improving bounce rate and increase conversion

What this was able to do was keep the much needed call-to-action after the video.

Since the implementation of the video we ensured we could track which visitors filled out which form.

There might not be enough data yet to know a more statistically significant conversion rate yet, but looks to be even higher in the 14-15% range, while the bounce rate has for sure already dropped down a few percentage points already!

 

Your own next step in Online Conversion?

If you think improving your online  marketing is important for you, I would suggest you try out our very own 2-min test here from us at Sonician in order for you to figure out if your online conversion could be doing better. You’ll find it at: www.sonician.com/survey/2mintest/

How to always win with your Adwords & PPC Campaign

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This Post will explain how to improve your PPC campaigns.

I love it when I take a risk, experiment a little bit, and it pays off. Something you took a risk on actually works.

That feeling of actually experimenting and then coming away with what you can honestly tell yourself is a success.

Not the type of success, where you are satisfied, but the real feeling of success.

Entrepreneurs, Business Owners, Top line managers and CEO’s all have something in common; they know how it feels when an experiment turns into a success.

It’s that feeling that keeps us eager to experiment.

Now what does this  have to do with Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertisement?

Well PPC in itself is an experiment. Days turn into weeks as you play with the “right keywords”, determine your “daily budget”, and play with “cost per click spend” (not to mention if you accidentally forget to set a budget)

These are all ingredients to what you are hoping will be another one of those successful experiments.

Now I’m making an assumption that you have either conducted a PPC campaign in the past which hasn’t gone as well as you were hoping, or that you are thinking about beginning one soon.

First, don’t give up on PPC. It is one of the most exciting, satisfying and financially rewarding advertising methods available to business owners today.

You should be very excited that you have access to this huge supply of data, to be able to take calculated experiments.

Imagine if we were still battling with print ads that weren’t reaching the right people, or radio ads with no feedback at all on who was listening?

Thank god you and I don’t need to invest in such hopeless advertising these days.

You are able to succeed with any form of advertising in the 21st century as long as you are willing to study and put in the work.

With the right data and analytics you can make informed decisions which lead to actionable business intelligence which in turn lead to results.

The tips below will help you put together the right ingredients to once again tell yourself that you’ve done it. That you took a calculated risk, worked hard on it and achieved the results you were expecting.

You once again had a success.

1. Determine your Goal

What do you want from a visitor that has landed on your website? What landing page are they being directed to?

To have a successful campaign you need to know what a success is. So figure out what you want the visitor to do. What do you consider a successful conversion?

If you are an e-commerce company then you obviously want the visitor to make a purchase.

If your website is all about branding then you more than likely shouldn’t be running a PPC campaign.

If you’re a B2B company you should be looking for lead capturing.

Armed with this knowledge you can make calculated decisions on what you need to achieve these goals, which leads directly into the Tip 2.

2. Generate value for the visitor.

When visiting a website what inspires you to fill out the form?

To make a purchase?

Your conversion is all about the value that you can communicate to your website visitor. If someone considers something to be of high value, then your conversion rate will increase. This is one of the most important factors when considering improving your conversion rate. There are a couple factors to keep in mind when developing a good value proposition.

It must be different to your competitors offer of value. It can be similar but you need to outperform your competitors offer in at least one factor, this is the biggest strength in your value proposition. It may be in quality, pricing or delivery. Many businesses miss this but this is by far the most important factor in communicating your organisations worth.

 

2. For B2B use Volley Marketing to automatically convert your website visitors

Volley Marketing has just been launched in Europe and it is the easiest way to convert your website visitors. It assesses your website visitors against a huge database and these website visitors contact details are automatically captured by the tracking code. This allows a 100% conversion rate when using a PPC campaign, obviously this is one of the best ways to get a return from your PPC investment.

Unfortunately, this is only available for businesses that focus on the B2B market in the EU.

3. Reverse engineer your sales process

Don’t forget to use your Google Analytics! Many website visitors may actually visit another page or search through your website before actually submitting their contact details or making a purchase.

Within Google Analytics there are awesome tools on the behaviour of your website visitors and when linked with Google Adwords, you can even see the behaviour of only the visitors that landed on your page through your PPC campaign.

You can also have a look at the visitors behaviour in the “behaviour flow” data, use this to understand what are your most popular pages on your website, because they may not be what you think they are. Work backwards from this information, see what has worked in the past and add this to your value proposition, emphasize what your strengths are and make it easier to get a conversion.

Never forget to check mobile vs computer vs the tablet, you need to understand on what device the majority of your visitors are coming in from and adjust you website accordingly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Customer Acquisition Cost: The Only Health Check Up Your Business Needs

check-up

 

 

Last week I had a doctor’s appointment, nothing serious but I thought it was time for me to go in for a general check-up. Get my body’s key performance indicators (KPI’s) if you will.

The Dr. took my height/weight,

blood pressure,

cholesterol and a blood sugar test.

I passed and was given the stamp of health. Now as I was leaving I began thinking about what a standardized health check up would look like for SME’s (small & medium sized enterprises). This then lead me to begin thinking about the health check we do ourselves with the 2-Min test we had developed on our home page.

If you hadn’t noticed, we have a 2-Min test on our home page & we use this as a way to make it easier to see the values that are often hidden until you start asking some more probing questions, so it is the first step to know our website visitors but more importantly to help outline their needs, and start to put numbers on what they will gain so they’ll see for themselves based on their individual businesses.

It simply clarifies key needs and determine some of your KPI’s. Now whenever I have arranged a meeting with a client or a prospect I always use 3 questions from our own 2-Min test to give me an idea on their needs and the health of the business, much like a quick check up.

Now my tools for checking up on a healthy SME are:

How many new customers did you acquire last year? (Height/Weight)

What is the lifetime value of one of your clients? (Blood Pressure)

What is your Customer Acquisition Cost? (Cholesterol Check)

Now seemingly every time I ask these questions to the Client or Prospect the first two questions are easy. They rattle the answers off as quickly as possible, like it’s a pop quiz and they’re buzzing in for their chance to answer.

However the third questions seems to get one of three reactions:

A long hmmmmm or ummmmm

A scratch of the head

Or “We have determined our Customer Acquisition Cost, but that was a couple of years ago”.

So this is where the business health check up begins, with the hard questions.

I like the hard questions, they end up leading to real change, real actionable tasks that can lead to organisational improvement.

So how can you calculate your Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)?

To determine your customer acquisition cost there is a simple formula and a more complex formula.

Simple Customer Acquisition Formula:

A rough overview can be determined as calculating your total costs for acquiring new customers (sales & marketing expenses) and divide that by the total number of new customers.

 

CAC= MCC/TCA

Where: CAC is Customer Acquisition Cost

MCC is Marketing Campaign Costs

TCA is Total Customers Acquired

 

 

More Complex Customer Acquisition Formula:

Using this method of calculating your customer acquisition cost provides a more in-depth analysis of the costs involved in acquiring new customers.

 

CAC= MCC + S + EW + PS + O/ TCA

Where: CAC is Customer Acquired Cost

MCC is Marketing Campaign Costs

S is total cost of sales and marketing material (CRM, Print Materials, etc)

EW is the total cost of sales & marketing employee’s wages which is spent on getting new clients

PS is the total cost of any professional services you use for sales & marketing

O is any other overheads you use for sales & marketing’

TCA is total customers acquired.

Ok…. What’s the results of my check-up?

What’s a Good Customer Acquisition Cost?

Depending on your results the best way to analyse your CAC is to actually break it down into a ration of cost per customer like this. If the life time value (LTV) of your customer is lower than CAC, this is the same as getting a death sentence from your Dr. There may still be time to make some changes but it’s going to take a drastic turn around to save your organisation. I have outlined below what you should be aiming for and the actions you should take at each stage. Note that since delivery costs are so widely different, you’d better make sure they are out of your LTV first (not that it’s not part of any value, it’s all of the client value, but not much of your own).

Lower than 1:1 – A death sentence to your organisation. It’s going to take a drastic turn around to save the business.

1:1 – Not much better. The organisation is still losing money on every customer acquired. You absolutely have to be serious about making your conversions better.

2:1 – This is a better level but it doesn’t provide a good profit initially. Possibly look a cutting some costs without affecting customer acquisition and definitely work on how to get your conversions in your sales process up. Way up. And this is quite doable, we often see multipliers of difference when you runt through it all.

3:1 – This is widely regarded as the perfect level of LTV and CAC. This means you are spending the right amount of money to maximize profit and organisational growth. Provided there is growth to get, and you’re not in a laggard market. And still you could optimize even more.

4:1 – This is obviously fantastic! But you can be spending more also on traffic/initial contacts to grow faster. If you get to this level it may be time for you to begin some more advancing customer acquisition campaigns.

How Can you Reduce your Customer Acquisition Cost?

There is no magic bullet when trying to improve your CAC. However, there are a few tips I would highly recommend that you implement as quickly as possible to begin turning it around.

1. Use A CRM System (If you don’t already) or a Bulk-CRM if you have very many clients per sales representative

using a CRM system is the first step towards improving your sales process. A great CRM system can help you segment your contacts, follow them through their sales process and ensure they are receiving the right content at the right stage of their buying process. According to Aberdeen 75% of sales managers say that using a CRM system helps to drives sales and increase conversion. Combine this with the fact that 75% of businesses have no formal processes for lead nurturing, this is the most obvious place to start in Customer Acquisition Strategy.

 

2. Use Email Marketing & Marketing Automation

According to DMA, email marketing email marketing has a ROI (return on investment) of 3800% and marketing automation increased revenue of B2B companies by 60% to 1.2 million last year. The ability of email combined with marketing automation allows marketers to now reach the right prospects at the right time. Doing this allows for a much higher conversion rate, which leads to higher customer conversion. This is one of the fastest tricks used by head CAC consultants based in the USA.

3. Use Volley Marketing

Volley Marketing has only recently been launched as a fantastic way to turn your inbound website visitors into outbound marketing sales (hence the name). Using this allows you to set triggers on your own webpage according to who you are trying to reach (industry, title, etc) and have them automatically placed in your CRM system via IP address tracking. The video below shows how easy it is to reach your specific target segment.

 

 

 

 

Time for you to go for a check-up

It’s time for you to figure out your own CAC and start asking yourself the hard questions. I hope that the health check up only brings you good news and you can give your organisation the stamp of health. However, if not, don’t ignore it. Begin taking the first steps to improvement and use this as fresh motivation to take on the new year and make it your organisation’s best year yet!

If you’d like to have an on-line calculator of your CAC, it’s even included in the 2-min-test together with the hints from Forrester, Gartner and other research organisations how much it can be improved. You’ll find it at:
https://www.sonician.com/survey/2mintest

 

 

Integrationscentrum Göteborg Stad – Intervju med Henrik Rudberg från Sonician om Integration av nyanlända



Integrationscentrums Cajsa Malmström från Göteborgs Stad intervjuar Henrik Rudberg, VD på Sonician, angående Flyktingguide/Språkvän verktyget Integra för Integration av nyanlända i samband med Nationella Konferensen om Integration 2 december, 2016.
(Foto/Redigering: Håkan Svensson/Peter Jonsvik, och för mer innehåll från Integrationscentrum Göteborgs Stad, se Integrationscentrums youtube-kanal)