It’s not every day that you’re offered a chance to attend a networking event in a revamped Victorian warehouse in the centre of Canterbury. And how could I turn down a mix of interesting speakers, pizza and a splash of beer?
Marketing your own business is not easy, especially with the minefield of free information out there sometimes it feels like you are drowning in a sea of conflicting advice because everyone has their own opinion on social media and business growth. This makes it difficult to know who to listen and whether they are offering the best or even relevant advice for your business.
There are times I have attended events where I have spent most of my time wondering how many exits there are and how I would escape unseen to avoid the rehash of information I already knew. The Fruitworks Create event I am happy to say wasn’t one of those events. It had three excellent speakers; David Shaw, Daniel Knowlton and Amy McManus.
The first to the floor was David Shaw who explained the importance of change and disruption in business. It is important know what changes are happening in your industry and not just dismissing innovations because it goes against everything you’ve learned in the past. The world is dynamic, customers’ tastes change and new technology can bring out new conveniences.
A few years back “Cloud Accounting” was almost dismissed as a “fad” by most accountants unwilling to learn a new platform. But what those accountants didn’t realise was people wanted access to their figures on an almost real-time basis from their mobile, laptop or iPad and not 2-9months after their year end. Xero being one of the more successful in this field due to its ability to integrate with other applications.
Look out for those disruptors in the market like Netflix/Amazon and ask yourself how you can adapt before you yourself become obsolete. The saddest story of the night was about Kodak who had developed digital technology but refused to release it because they would lose out on photo development fees.
Daniel is the #12 Top 100 Digital Marketing Influencer on Twitter in the world in 2016. It is a huge pleasure for me to have attended to hear such a vivacious and motivated speaker talk about social media and how it helps with online presence and brand awareness. Here are some points Daniel raised during the event:
As on January 2016, people spend 2.1 hours on social media every day on an average! Personally I thought it was more as my phone battery can barely survive my 2hr commute from excessive tweeting.
Knowlton suggested you should join online communities and become the key centre of influence and consequently increase website traffic to your website.
According to Daniel, Snapchat has trending in the business at the moment, which I myself was quite surprised about. He has written several posts on his website on how to use snapchat effectively which I shall certainly be perusing when I have the opportunity.
Dan’s five steps to successful social media:
- Research: Look up the following tools
- Followerwonk – tracks influential people in your market, see what they are doing and who they are engaging.
- Buzzsumo – Shows most shared content.
- Use free resources to learn
- Socialmediaexaminer.com, blog.bufferapp.com (shows popular tweeting times to ensure correct tweet scheduling. Buffer is apparently better than Hootsuite now.
- Follow Influencers
- This involves finding key individuals who can help you deliver important content to your target audience. Engage with your influencers, or create articles and feature them in it.
- Create an Action Plan
- Those who fail to plan are essentially planning to set themselves up for failure. The first step to any marketing strategy is to establish objectives and create a plan. Remember to give out Value/Trust.
- Use tools and measure often
- Measure success over 3-6 months.
- Use each social platform's own analytics tools (Facebook Insights, Twitter Analytics etc.) in conjunction with Google. Don’t just take notes, analyse and strategise accordingly.
- Google Analytics is a great tool to monitor your website, and Leadfeeder, at $59 per month, tells you which companies visited your site so you can contact them.
Find out more in Dan’s detailed presentation here.
Amy is the owner of AM Marketing - a multi award-winning marketing agency in Canterbury. Amy talked about all the ways in which businesses could create EPIC content for social media. Following are some choice selections from the discussion:
- Add video into your marketing in 2016 – snapchat video, Livestream, YouTube, Periscope, Facebook Live _ take the first steps. If you are shy, try using animations instead.
- Upload photos and images – Remember a picture speaks a thousand words. In the fast-paced word that we live in, unfortunately text will generally take a back seat to images. What would Shakespeare say?
- Shares, texts and links are attractive but not all the time, as they don’t get as much engagement as video.
- Some studies say they infographics are the most shared content on social media. Create funny and witty infographics for your business. We’ve already started working on ours to release shortly. Watch this space.
- Promotion is important but if you keep selling, no one will engage with your content. So keep it to the minimal.
- For social media images use free stock photos sites like Pixels and Pixabay.
- Canva – very useful tool for people with limited graphic design skills. Use Canva to create designs for both web and print: blog graphics, presentations, Facebook covers, flyers, posters, invitations and so on. It’s really simple.
- Wordswag – directly connected to Pixabay. You can use this app to create beautifully custom text layouts that would normally take minutes - or even hours - with just a tap.
A very big thanks to the following speakers:
- Daniel Knowlton - Founder of @KPSDigitalMktng
- David Shaw - Author, speaker @Davidmarkshaw
- Amy McManus – Owner at @marketing_am