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How SMEs Can Prepare for Black Friday

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Originally a significant date on the retail calendar in the USA, Black Friday has gradually increased in importance and popularity throughout the world. With large, medium and small retailers being impacted by the historic shopping holiday, it is essential that whatever the size of your business; you are as prepared as possible for the big day in order to benefit from Black Friday and Cyber Monday as much as possible.
Run a Website Test Although it may seem like an obvious and simple place to start, ensuring your E-commerce website is running smoothly with no errors and a quick loading time as this will help massively when it comes to potential customers browsing your store. You need to be aware of the potential traffic and sales you could experience, and evaluate whether this is something your platform can handle. The last thing you want is increased traffic and a slow or faulty website that prevents conversions.
Push Your Offers  Make sure any offers, vouchers or price reductions a…

Infographic: Long Form Vs Short Form Content - Which To Choose?

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There is no doubt that content plays a key role in driving an online marketing campaign forward. Without engaging content, you wouldn’t be able to drive traffic to your website. Also, informative content tends to rank higher on the top search result, thereby offering your business better visibility. More importantly, high-quality content can help you build a niche for yourself in your chosen industry, and help you with your link building activities.

With so many benefits, businesses must focus on creating content that resonates with their target audience. This will help boosts your traffic and conversion rate. However, when it comes to creating content, you need to choose between long form content and short form content. Here, long form content refers to blog posts with 2000+ words, whereas, blog posts with 500-750 words is considered as short form content.

Statistically speaking, long form content ranks well on the search result. Why? Because it offers readers all information about a…

Ironic Humour from Algorithm Driven Advertising

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In a world of increasingly algorithmic driven advertising, sometimes the computers leave a gem. This screen grab was taken from within the CNN mobile app on October 13, 2019. The top half of the screen was a story about a device created to clean plastics from the ocean. Directly below the eco-friendly story was an algorithm chosen advertisement, presumably keyword targeted, from a plastics manufacturer. The greatest irony, is the plastic dock and patio floating in a body of water.


Reborn Gmail Gives Teaser Into Artificial Intelligence Powered Future

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Gmail is a cutting edge email app for computers, tablets, and phones that has been in use since 2004. The program has constantly grown and evolved over the years, with developers adding a plethora of productivity features. Relatively new in the Gmail arsenal includes artificial intelligence and machine learning. Gmail is changing how we communicate with its use of AI. Users no longer need to worry about perfect spelling or ideal sentence structure thanks to Smart Compose. Gone are the days when a user forgets to reply to an important email with the introduction of Nudges. That occasional pesky spam email that somehow gets through the filters is a thing of the past with the deployment of a machine learning framework called TensorFlow.

Smart Compose

Smart Compose is a Gmail feature that utilizes artificial intelligence to predict what you are typing, and offer suggestions that finish your sentences if you choose. This tool can be a great time saver for users who send a lot of emails. As …

9 Things to Consider When Choosing a Shopping Cart Software

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Long gone are the days when you could just depend on traditional sales such as in-person visits or even walk-ups to wherever you're located. You can't even really just depend on the phone anymore, much less very old-fashioned mail order sales. Now you must meet your customers where they are, whenever they are there, and that means making sure that they can access e-commerce in useful, functional ways. To do that, you probably need to implement some shopping cart software.

However, as you probably know from your own experience, not all shopping cart software is created equal. Some is built on customer convenience and efficiency. But much does not take the full user experience in mind. For example, you need to make sure that your customer believes in your security system and knows that their transaction will protect their financial information. What other considerations should you review? This graphic explains them.

Infographic credit: https://www.salesforce.com/products/commer…

Digital Developments That Are Impacting Retail

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There is no doubt that technology is constantly changing the world, and as a result; retail is being directly impacted by new digital developments. As consumers, we are no longer restricted to traditional shopping methods as online shopping now provides a range of different services that offer the ultimate convenience.
Increase of E-Commerce Sales through Digital Devices Sales through digital devices have soared in the last 5 years and the number of digital buyers worldwide has increased from 1.32 billion in 2014 to 1.79 billion in 2018. They’re also expected to reach 1.92 billion by 2019. These massive numbers reflect the increasing demand for enhanced digital experiences for customers, as more and more people now prefer doing their shopping online – even 28% of seniors have embraced new technologies and prefer online shopping to traditional shopping methods.
Rise of Subscription Box Services Subscription boxes have become incredibly popular over the past few years, with online visi…

7 of the Worst Marketing Mistakes Ever

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It may seem surprising that even some of the world’s most successful and famous brands don’t always get it right. In fact, some of the marketing campaigns from the likes of Pepsi and Adidas have had the opposite effect than intended with many resulting in public outrage and having to be pulled. Here are some of the most shocking marketing mistakes we’ve ever seen!
1. Coca Cola  Arguably one of the most infamous marketing mistakes to date has to be when Coca Cola decided to change the original recipe of their beloved beverage in April 1985. Much to the distaste of their target consumers, their new and supposedly ‘improved’ recipe was not a success and the public response was so negative, people were hoarding the original Coke and selling it on the black market for hugely inflated prices.

The company’s call centers were also inundated with complaints and there were even threats of lawsuits. By the summer of 1985, Coca Cola were forced to revert back to their well-loved original fizzy f…

What To Consider When Evaluating Customer Service Apps

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Managing your customer service and your customer interactions can be a stressful thing for a company. There are so many sites that people turn to in order to vocalize their complaints, and those bad thoughts can quickly spread. And it's tough to be what people expect from customer service in the day and age of modern technology. They want access at their fingertips, all the time, and their patience may not be what it used to be back when mail, brick and mortar, and phones were the only methods of true contact. However, there's something that can help manage those customer service concerns — an app. There are all sorts of options that exist for apps, with different functionality based on what you need and what your business runs like. So how do you sort out the options? This graphic helps to explain what to consider as you evaluate what customer service apps can look like.

How To Ace Each Cold Call You Make

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Cold calling can be an essential yet frightening part of your job. However, when done correctly, it can be extremely lucrative. Quite often, the sales funnel includes 5 instances of contact with the potential customer, and the cold call can be an effective part of your strategy when done correctly. Use the steps outlined in the graphic below to ace your cold call game.

6 Effective Lead Generation Strategies for B2B Businesses

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When you work in digital marketing, you probably realize that you need all sorts of strategies to generate the new business that you need. But even with all your experience and all your lead generation lists, it's possible that you might be missing some opportunities.

For example, social channels are taking more and more priority, and for good reason. Sales and marketing are looking to increase the quality and volume of leads, and social can help with both those concerns.

But while you're looking for new channels, don't ignore what you're already doing — and how you can adjust it to better support lead generation. Consistency in your materials and communication, for example, is important. What else can you do to keep figuring out how to convince more customers that you can help them? This graphic explains it.


7 Steps to a Better Brand Identity

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Distances have less meaning then they once did. Consumers are no longer limited to locally or seasonally available product. In this increasingly competitive business environment, brand identity can be very important.

Here are 7 things to consider when building an identity for your brand name that will stand out from the crowd.
1. Determine Your Target Audience Until you determine your target demographic, you can not market your products efficiently. Take some time to determine who your customer will be. For example, you may consider age, gender, or geographic region.
2. Create a Brand Statement When done well, a brand statement will communicate a general overview of the products you offer, and the advantage of choosing your company. It should consider the previously identified target audience.
3. Who Are Your Competitors Understanding who your competitors are allows you to gain valuable insights into what may be working well for them. By analyzing your competition, you not only get i…

Marketing Your Business for Halloween

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As you know, Halloween is just around the corner. This holiday kicks off the last few months of the year, diving right into the holiday season. Now is a good time to start thinking about your seasonal branding, if you haven’t already. This is important, since 40 percent of holiday shoppers begin their shopping duties before Halloween, while another 41.5 percent claim they begin in November.

Many stores and businesses see a huge increase in activity and sales during the holiday season. For that reason, it can end up being a lucrative way to boost sales, traffic or views. People love holidays,be it Halloween, Thanksgiving or Christmas, and so they are more inclined to visit a website decked out in holiday themes.
What Is Seasonal Branding? Admittedly, seasonal branding is no different than your usual marketing or advertising strategies. The only exception is that you add some festive touches to pander to the majority of your audience. You are celebrating the holidays with them —whether…

How UX Design Will Improve Your Revenue

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If you haven't already taken an in-depth look at your business' UX design, this is one area you may be able to improve and in the process increase your overall revenue. UX stands for user experience and can include everything from how easy your site is to navigate to how interactive your website is for users. In a nutshell, a positive experience will make the customer stick around your site longer and become more loyal to your brand.

The key is to look at your website through the eyes of a typical person who might visit your site. If you were that person, what types of things would you be most interested in and what would you want to see? What would make your visit to the site more enjoyable and useful? Some businesses create user personas that represent the typical site visitor for that business to help with this.

Companies who regularly invest in improving UX and UI find that every dollar they invest in improving user experience results in a $10-$100 return on investment (R…

Why Packaging Design is Important

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When marketing a product, you have many factors to take into consideration. Everything from target consumer to the product aesthetics need to be analysed and looked at in order to make your product one of the 5% of new products that don’t fail (yes, that means 95% of all new products fail). The reason so many products fail is that the consumer doesn’t have the time to personally look at each and every product they choose to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of the product, so they choose a shortcut method, and this is your products packaging.

Everything from the shape, color and logo on the packaging plays a huge part in attracting a consumer to your product over another. You can’t just slap a logo on a box, color it with your company colors and send it off. There’s actually a lot of science and psychology behind how packaging works and draws a consumer in. Psychologists have identified what it is that causes products to jump off the shelf and into a consumer’s life, looking at …

7 Photoshop Tips For Beginners

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Photoshop is imperative to any photographer or graphic designer, but these professions are not the only ones that can put this influential software to good use. For the creative professional, who may include freelancers, marketing professionals, entrepreneurs, even business owners, it helps to have even just a working knowledge of how to use Photoshop. The use of Photoshop can make a huge impact to your business if used correctly. For this reason, New Horizons created a slideshow on 7 Photoshop must-knows for beginners. You can view the slideshow below.


7 Photoshop Must-Knows For Beginners from NewHorizonsLearningSolutions