If you run a B2B (business-to-business) company, then generating new leads and increasing brand awareness is one of your top goals.
But with so much competition in the marketplace, it can feel overwhelming to find ways to continually stand out and showcase what makes you different.
Enter: webinars. An easy, inexpensive approach to reaching your target audience.
According to research from Zippia, a whopping 73% of webinar attendees become qualified leads, and over a dozen of Starling Social’s clients have decided to work with us after attending a workshop that I’ve delivered.
So I can say from experience that webinars can offer a great return on investment (ROI) — but before I dive into how to create a webinar and generate new leads, let’s talk about what a webinar is:
What Is A Webinar?
“Webinar” is a portmanteau of the words “web” and “seminar” and is exactly what it sounds like: a presentation, seminar, or workshop delivered digitally.
Usually a webinar consists of a subject matter expert (like me, or like you) sharing knowledge and insights with attendees.
Since webinars are delivered online there’s typically a series of slides to go along with the presentation, and a Q&A session afterward where attendees can clarify things they may not understand or might have extra questions about.
In my opinion, the biggest value-add of a webinar is the interactive element. Engaging with attendees throughout the presentation, and after during the Q&A, offers opportunities to showcase your knowledge, empower attendees, and keep them engaged from start to finish.
Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s dive into how to create a webinar:
How to Create a Webinar: 10 Simple Steps
1. Start With Your Priorities
Webinars can cover lots of topics, but by identifying one specific topic that’s relevant to your target audience is the easiest way to create a webinar that has value and attracts participants.
If you’re not sure what to focus on, try doing some audience research. Here are a few steps to get started:
- Consider the most frequently asked questions your customers have. Use these questions as the basis of your webinar.
- Look at your social media content. Take a look at the posts that get the most engagement, comments, and shares and use these trends to guide the topic you choose.
- Use a tool like Quora or AnswerThePublic. Look at the discussions to see what people are asking about and choose a topic based on what you see.
Some webinars are high-level and cover a series of sub-topics under one umbrella, while some are super macro-level and hone in on exploring a single topic or theme.
The best way to decide on what to cover is to do your research, brainstorm as many topics as possible, and choose a topic that aligns with your strengths and interests.
2. Choose A Webinar Format
Knowing how you want to present your content in advance will make creating the webinar a million times faster.
Consider your personality and objectives, and take a look at these options before deciding:
This is the most common type of webinar. Presentation-style webinars are straightforward, with one person (you) speaking while slides, a video, or an audio file plays in the background.
Protip: keep your attendees engaged with polls, Q&A sessions, and group discussion sections. This allows people to share their experiences and creates a more cohesive group learning experience.
As the name suggests, this webinar style focuses on someone interviewing an industry expert who shares their knowledge and fields questions from attendees.
If you’re running the webinar then you’ll likely be the one doing the interview, so you’ll want to look for an interviewee who has at least one of these qualities:
- Someone at the forefront of their industry
- Someone with a lot of expertise in your field
- Someone with a lot of influence in your field
Webinars in this style are intended to show off a specific product or service and highlight its usefulness to potential customers.
Usually, the person running the webinar will do a screen share to show the products interface and functionality to attendees.
This type of webinar is great for converting people who may not be familiar with your product or service and converting them into a customer, or upselling existing customers who might not have known the benefits of using a specific feature.
The nice thing about this style of webinar is that you can create webinars for newbies (aka, people who might become customers) and convert existing customers by creating in-depth webinars that upsell aspects of the tool or service they might not already be taking advantage of.
Moderated Panel Discussion Webinars
As the title suggests, this style of webinar consists of a bunch of speakers talking about the same topic, moderated by someone (typically you, in this case).
Webinars in this style are great for bringing together a handful of industry experts and leaders so attendees can learn from all of them at once. They can also be a great way to extend your personal network by creating opportunities for others to shine and share their knowledge.
This is self-explanatory: the entire webinar is an opportunity for attendees to ask you questions in real-time and offers the chance at a dynamic learning environment.
3. Organize Your Tasks
The scope of your event depends largely on you and how aggressive you want to be, but here are a few tasks you’ll want to tackle (or assign to someone on your team):
Promotions: consider how you’ll be promoting your webinar. This can include email marketing, social media posts, social media ads, landing pages, etc.
Content: time to figure out what goes into the webinar! This task focuses on organizing the webinars themes, presenters, content (slides and talking points) and design.
Operations: make sure to have an email signup list created, a webinar presentation tool tested and ready to go, and follow-up tasks like “thank you” emails already scheduled to send to your list of attendees.
4. Pick a Webinar Tool
This can be as fancy or as simple as you want it to be!
Some webinars I’ve hosted have been through WebinarJam and GoToWebinar, which are great options but might not be ideal if this is your first time hosting a webinar.
My suggestion is to keep it simple, host the event through Zoom, and use screen sharing to share slides that are saved as a PDF (my favourite) or as a PowerPoint or Keynote presentation.
When choosing a tool, some things to keep in mind include:
- How many attendees do you expect?
- Do you plan to save a recording to share later?
- What’s your budget?
- How important is personalization and branding?
5. Plan Your Visuals
Visuals are one of the most important parts of your webinar! The content that shows on your screen not only helps emphasize what you’re saying, but can also provide additional context for attendees and act as reference material if they want to refer back to the slide after the webinar is over.
(This is up to you of course, but I always make my slides available after a webinar whether a recording is available or not. It’s just an extra value-add that helps attendees!)
Some webinar visual “do’s” include:
- Keep slide content high-level. Use bullet points, images, and charts and graphs to emphasize your points, but don’t make them super text-heavy. Some tips here include:
- Memes, gifs, and funny images. Surprise people and make attendees less likely to tune out.
- Use short paragraphs. Even your bulleted lists should be as short as possible.
- Lean into stats and data. People love numbers and including stats to back up what you’re saying can help attendees remember what you’re saying.
- Have a summary opening slide. This should list the topics you’ll be covering and any other essential information (date, time) and availability of the content once the webinar is over.
- Introduce yourself and other presenters. Don’t assume that attendees know everything about you! Use this as a chance to highlight your expertise and remind attendees why you’re the one they came to see.
6. Prepare the Space and Equipment
Make sure to choose a quiet space with a door that closes for your webinar, like a home office or a conference room. The last thing you want is for someone to come barging in during the middle of your presentation!
Equipment and connectivity also plays an important role in a successful webinar. Landlines are less likely to cut out during your talk, and headset microphones tend to cut out less often than wireless models, so consider using them if possible.
If you aren’t sitting at your desktop PC, make sure that your laptop is fully charged so you don’t disconnect in the middle of saying something important.
Lastly, make sure to use a high-quality camera and good lighting. This is your chance to shine, so make sure you and other presenters don’t look like potatoes. If you’re hosting the event with others, do a dry run a few days before to make sure everyone’s tech setup works, that there are no distractions in the background, and that they look as flattering as possible.
7. Create the Registration or Landing Page
Where your attendees register for your event depends a lot on your technical ability — some people prefer to use tools like Eventbrite, while others prefer to create specific landing pages on their own websites.
(Personally I like to do both. I create an Eventbrite event so it gets seen on that platform and connects with potential attendees there, and create a landing page on the Starling Social website so I can direct people to our website when promoting the webinar on my own feeds.)
No matter where you create the registration or landing page, it should include:
- A short summary of the webinar’s goals, including a few bullet points for readability.
- The host’s experience and relevant knowledge or expertise as it applies to the topic.
- The webinar’s time, date, and location.
- The time zone. I listed this separately because it’s an often-overlooked detail but is essential since people might not be tuning in from where you live.
8. Start Promoting Your Event
I typically wait until after the webinar is 99% ready to go before I start promoting it — this way I can speak to specific items I’ll be discussing and can tailor my marketing messaging to appeal to as many attendees as possible.
Ideally you want to give yourself three to five weeks of promotion before your webinar date, and should use as many promotional avenues as possible. This includes:
- Email marketing
- Organic marketing (like this blog post!) and social media
- Social media ads
- Website promo like popups, landing pages, and banners
Remember: the more work you do to promote your webinar, the more people will see it and potentially sign up to attend, so don’t skimp on this step!
Don’t skip this step! If you’re hosting a webinar with multiple people, it’s crucial to set aside an hour or so to run through the content and address any technical problems. Things to look for include:
- Audio issues and inconsistencies
- Video playback issues
- Framing and lighting
- Internet connectivity issues
Rehearsing is just as important if you’re hosting the webinar by yourself. It’s hard to be “on” when it’s just you talking to a screen, so I suggest running through your talk at least once before you deliver it so you sound natural and conversational
10. Deliver Your Webinar
The big day is here! Make sure all your presenters are on the call at least 15 minutes before the webinar is scheduled to start so you can test everyone’s mics and connections before your attendees start arriving.
After the webinar is over, send a follow-up email that includes the following:
- A thank-you note for attending
- A link to a recording or slides if they’re available
- A discount code or incentive to encourage conversions
Create a Webinar That Builds Your Audience and Gets Leads Today
As you can see, creating an effective webinar that converts isn’t as hard as it might seem!
By spending the time to build a webinar that caters to your target audience, you can create an engaging lead generation tool that excites and empowers attendees and turns them into leads, then clients, then return customers who keep coming back for more.
Sign Up for My Upcoming Webinars With Volunteer Manitoba!
If you’re in Manitoba, you can register for one of my three upcoming workshops with Volunteer Manitoba!
This series of workshop-style webinars “stack” your learning, so you can start one and build on your knowledge over the next two presentations, or jump in and register for the workshop that best meets your needs.
While these webinars will be tailored to a nonprofit audience the strategies and insights can be applied to organizations of all sizes and scopes, so if one of these topics appeals to you don’t wait to register!
October 19, 2023
09:00 AM to 12:00 PM CST
Exactly what it sounds like! This workshop is perfect for people who are looking to build their foundational knowledge of each social media platform, what makes them different, and how to think strategically about how to use them.
January 18, 2024
09:00 AM to 12:00 PM CST
Confession: this is my favourite workshop of this series! As a content marketer I love helping others think strategically about content!
This is a hands-on workshop designed to help you understand how to think about content for your digital marketing campaigns in a high-level, strategic way.
We’ll cover why content is important, different types of content and how they differ from each other, how to develop “content pillars”, and lots more.
February 15, 2024
09:00 AM to 12:00 PM CST
Another workshop that is exactly what it sounds like!
Email marketing is one of the most effective ways of connecting with your target audience and growing any business or nonprofit, and this workshop covers everything from list growth strategies, to content ideas, and lots more.
It’s no secret that podcasts are one of the most popular ways to consume media these days. According to data from DemandSage, 41% of people in the United States tune into a podcast every month, with 28% of the population tuning in weekly, so if you’re a regular podcast listener, you’re not alone!
Personally I like to listen to political podcasts, miniseries, and (of course) podcasts about digital marketing and marketing in general.
I’ve actually been listening to podcasts since 2006 when I got my first iPod Nano. I decked it out in a skin from TokiDoki like this one and would listen to them on the bus on my way to and from work. My commute was a minimum of 45 minutes each way, so I got a lot of listening in!
My obsession with podcasts has only gotten stronger over the years. I find them to be a great way to learn new things and stay up-to-date with the latest news and trends.
So today I’m going to be sharing some of my top marketing podcasts for 2023 so you can get your learning on, too!
How to Choose the Right Podcasts
Just like movies and music, choosing the right podcast is a highly personal decision, and with so many out there it can feel overwhelming to sift through them all and find the right one for you.
While I’ll be making some recommendations below, here are a few things to keep in mind when considering what to listen to:
Consider Your Listening Goals
Do you want to be inspired by your fellow marketers, or do you want to learn practical insights from case studies and niche topics?
Also consider whether you prefer interview-style content, or if you prefer lively banter between a couple of hosts. Personally I don’t like “acted” podcasts where it’s more like listening to a radio play, so I tend to tune these out.
Consider Your Preferred Format
When it comes to podcasts, format matters.
While podcasts are typically auto-first, you might find that you prefer to listen to podcast that also provide transcripts for accessibility, or that you prefer watching video versions because they can be more engaging.
Experiment with different styles and find what works for you!
Consider Extra Content
Lots of podcasts offer additional materials that can increase your learning experience. Some things to keep an eye out for include:
- Episode highlights
- Links to mentioned articles and resources
- Downloadable guides
- Blog post summaries
Consider the Hosts
The host’s personality and style can really make or break a podcast, and if you don’t connect with the host(s), chances are you won’t be listening to that podcast for long.
Personally I’ve found that this ties back into the podcast’s format more than anything; some hosts thrive doing interviews while some just want to chat it out, and what you wind up listening to really comes down to your personal preference.
Consider the Editing
The way a podcast is edited can really elevate the listening experience. Of course, the type of podcast editing that elevates your listening experience is highly personal, but some things that can really make or break a podcast include:
- Sharing previews of upcoming topics
- Using extra audio or musical clips to add context or atmosphere
- Using editing techniques that turn interviews into immersive journalism pieces
The 7 Best Marketing Podcasts of 2023
Now that we’ve talked about how to choose the right podcasts to subscribe to, let’s explore some of the best marketing podcasts out there:
Hosted by Mitch Joel
Confession: I started with this podcast because it’s my favourite. I’ve been listening to Six Pixels of Separation since 2007 and Mitch Joel’s insightful, thought-provoking interviews played a huge role in shaping how I think about my industry.
While some of the podcasts on this list are specific to a certain niche, what I like about Six Pixels is that it’s a bit all over the map. At first glance some of the topics might not seem 1:1 about marketing, but trust me — you’ll walk away from every episode having learned something new that will make you a better marketer.
Hosted by Buffer
If you’re looking for a quick, snackable podcast then don’t sleep on this essential listening from the team behind Buffer.
Most episodes are 10-15 minutes long, super straight and to-the-point, and tend to be focused on timely topics like the ideal TikTok length, algorithm optimization strategies, and more.
While new episodes aren’t published that regularly — right now they update about once a month — there are over 200 archived episodes to explore and the quality is excellent.
Hosted by Mikhail Myzgin
As someone who was around pre-social media and witnessed how digital marketing has leaned into big data and gamification (among other tactics) to keep audiences engaged, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t aware that there’s a dark side to my industry.
I’ve also studied philosophy and ethics, and think a lot about how to balance achieving our clients’ marketing goals without wading into ethically gray areas.
That’s why I love Ethics in Marketing: it offers a chance to think about how to make ethical decisions with our marketing strategies that are fair, kind, and respectful to our audiences. Episode topics range from how nonprofits can handle ethical dilemmas, to advertising and disinformation, to manipulation and dark patterns.
Hosted by Ralph Burns and Kasim Aslam
If you’re looking for a podcast with hands-on advertising strategies to attract and convert new leads that you can apply today, this is the podcast for you.
This podcast is great because it’s easy enough to understand that someone new to the industry can get a lot out of it, but the hosts and guests are subject matter experts so they’re able to go deep on a variety of topics and pull insightful suggestions and pieces of wisdom out of every conversation.
If you’re looking to learn more about the nitty gritty of social media ads, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, and how to build a robust, competitive ad strategy that gets results, you won’t want to miss this one.
5. Hidden Brain
Hosted by Shankar Vedantam
Okay, this podcast isn’t actually about marketing, specifically, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t deserve a spot on this list.
I’ve been listening to this podcast for years and first became interested in it because it explores “the unconscious patterns that drive human behaviour” and (as you may have noticed) I like to apply a multi-faceted understanding to my work as a marketer. After all, I’m marketing to humans, so understanding our behaviour and motivations helps me do that more effectively.
Topics covered on this podcast range from compulsive consumption, the psychology of self-doubt, how stories help us make sense of the world, and much more.
Hosted by Simon Sinek
This is another podcast that isn’t specifically about digital marketing, but offers conversations and thoughtful insights that can help shape the way you do business, think about your brand and industry, and provide inspiration for creative success.
I love this podcast because it reminds me that my life is so much more than just the work I do. I’m a creative person and I get to run a company that allows me to enjoy creative freedom, flexibility, and to continue to grow personally and professionally while doing something I enjoy.
Hosted by Tod Maffin
Back to basics with this one! This daily podcast gives you a quick, 10-minute-or-so rundown of what’s been happening in the world of digital marketing.
From the latest Twitter/X drama, to updates and feature rollouts, changes to policies, and more across the largest social media platforms, this podcast is a must-listen for those of us who want to stay at the bleeding edge of strategy and results.
Hosted by Michael Stelzner
Here’s another podcast that’s been around for ages, which in my view speaks to its importance and usefulness for people in my industry.
This podcast is one of several offered by the folks at Social Media Examiner, and don’t let the cutesy aesthetic of their website and brand fool you — these folks are some of the savviest out there, and their website and podcast have been a go-to for me for years.
Each weekly episode runs about 45 minutes and provides a deep dive into new skills, strategies, and tactics to get the most out of your efforts. Michael also does interviews with industry leaders, breaks down algorithm changes and updates so you can be agile in your approach to each platform, and lots more.
Build Your Digital Marketing Skills Today!
By listening to these podcasts (or just a handful, I know the list is pretty comprehensive) you can elevate your skills as a digital marketer and easily stay in-the-know about the latest industry news.
If you’re more of a reader, you can subscribe to Starling Social’s weekly digital marketing newsletter. Each week I choose the most timely news and resource articles and sum it up in a short, snappy email that you get every Tuesday morning (because nobody wants more emails on a Monday). You can sign up for next week’s send here.
Ready to take those digital marketing to-do’s off your plate? We can help! Click here to learn more about Starling Social’s managed digital marketing services.
What Are Follow-Up Emails and How Can They Help Your Business?
Follow-up emails are basically messages you send to someone after you've had some sort of interaction with them. In business, they're often used to keep in touch with potential or existing clients, to give project updates, or to check on the progress of a deal or sale.
Good follow-up emails are usually personalized, timely, and written in a professional tone. They should be helpful to the person you're emailing and aim to build or strengthen a relationship. Sending follow-up emails can help you establish credibility and trust with your clients, leading to new business or keeping your current clients coming back!
But how do you make sure your follow-up emails hit the mark? Here are some tips and best practices to help you write follow-up emails that will boost your business.
Best Practices for Writing Follow-Up Emails: Tips & Tricks to Get Results
Writing effective follow-up emails can be a tricky skill to master. But don't worry, we love a process to make things easy for everyone. We’re not gatekeeping over here! Let’s learn how to write an email that will get results.
Keep it clear and concise
The first and most important tip for writing a good follow-up email is to keep it clear and to the point. Your recipient should immediately understand your email's purpose without having to read a novel. Time is of the essence! Start your email by addressing your recipient and getting straight to the point. Let them know why you're reaching out and what you need from them.
Keeping your email clear and concise will make it easier for your recipient to read and respond to your email. Plus, don’t you hate when you ask three questions and you only get the answer to one? Let’s try to avoid that.
Add a personal touch
Personalizing your follow-up email is a great way to show your recipient that you care about their specific needs and interests. Use their name in the email, and reference any previous interactions or conversations you've had with them. You can also add a personal touch by mentioning something you have in common or a shared interest.
Adding a personal touch to your follow-up email will make your recipient feel valued and appreciated. This can help you build a stronger relationship with them and increase the chances of getting the response you want.
One of the best ways to make your follow-up email effective is to provide value to your recipient. Make sure to highlight how your product or service can benefit them, and try to address any concerns or questions they may have. Providing value can increase the chances of your recipient taking the action you want them to take.
Try to put yourself in your recipient's shoes when writing your follow up email. Think about what they would find valuable. By providing value to your recipient, you'll make it easier for them to see the benefits of your product or service and increase the chances of them responding to your email.
Use a call to action
A call to action (CTA) is a statement that encourages your recipient to take a specific action, like replying to your email, scheduling a call, or making a purchase. Make sure to include a clear and concise CTA in your follow-up email, and make it easy for your recipient to take the desired action.
Be specific about what action you want your recipient to take and make it easy for them to do so. You can also use urgency in your CTA to encourage your recipient to take action sooner rather than later.
Follow up in a timely manner
Timing is key when it comes to follow-up emails. You don't want to wait too long, or your recipient may forget about your initial interaction. On the other hand, you don't want to follow up too soon and risk coming across as pushy or impatient. Aim to follow up within a reasonable timeframe and consider the context of your previous interactions.
Following up within a few days may be appropriate if your message is urgent. However, if your message is less urgent, it may be better to wait a week or two before following up.
Examples of Follow-Up Emails That Generate Results
If you’ve just Googled “Follow up email examples”, then this is the section you are looking for. Feel free to copy and paste these, but PLEASE personalize them a little bit first.
1. Thank you email
A simple thank you email is a great way to follow up with a customer or client after a meeting or interaction. You can use this opportunity to express your gratitude for their time and interest and to remind them of the key points discussed during your conversation.
It was so nice to meet you at the Chamber of Commerce luncheon. I’m definitely going to have to try that restaurant down the street you mentioned — thanks for the tip!
It would be great to learn more about your needs and how our digital marketing services can help you. I’m sure you will be able to increase your sales and have more time to focus on the big-picture items if you have our team take over your social media and newsletter writing. As discussed, I will follow up with you next Tuesday at 10 am to answer any additional questions you may have.
2. Automated follow-up email
Automated follow-up emails can save you time and ensure you consistently follow up with your leads and clients. You can customize a template with specific information, such as their name or previous interaction with your business.
I wanted to follow up with you regarding our recent conversation about Starling’s digital marketing services. As promised, I have attached more information about our product/service to this email.
We're a nimble team of creatives specializing in data-driven digital marketing strategy, social media and social ads, copywriting and content strategy, and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising.
Our clients enjoy transparency, clear communication, and guidance to help make informed decisions about their digital marketing so no dollar goes to waste.
Please let me know if you have any additional questions or if you would like to schedule a call to discuss this further.
Thank you for your time and interest in Starling Social.
3. Reminder email
A reminder email is a great way to follow up with a client or customer who may have forgotten to take action on a previous request. You can use this opportunity to remind them of the deadline or the importance of the action you need them to take.
I hope you are doing well. I finally got around to visiting that dog park you suggested last time we spoke, and it reminded me to send you a note! I wanted to follow up with you regarding the [task/action] we discussed during that networking conference last month. Just a reminder, this task/action deadline is [date].
Please let me know if you have any questions or if you need any additional information to complete this task/action.
Thank you in advance for your thoughts. Looking forward to hearing from you.
By customizing these examples to fit your specific needs and goals, you can write effective follow-up emails that generate results and help you grow your business.
Tools & Software to Automate & Simplify Your Follow-Up Email Process
There are plenty of tools and software out there that can help you simplify and automate your follow-up email process. From automated sales email software to customer service software, these tools can help ensure your customers get timely responses. Automated workflow software can also be used to streamline the process and ensure that all emails are sent on time.
Automated Sales Email Software: Automated sales email software like HubSpot, SalesLoft, and Reply.io can help you automate your sales outreach and follow-up emails. These tools allow you to create email sequences, set up triggers and conditions, and personalize your emails to increase engagement and conversion rates.
Automated Customer Service Software: If you have a large customer base or receive a high volume of inquiries, using automated customer service software like Zendesk, Freshdesk, or Intercom can help you streamline your follow-up process. These tools allow you to create canned responses, set up chatbots, and automate email follow-ups to ensure timely and efficient customer support.
Automated Workflow Software: Automated workflow software like Trello, Asana, and Monday.com can help you manage your follow-up emails and tasks more efficiently. These tools allow you to create workflows, assign tasks, and track progress to ensure that your follow-up emails are sent on time and that nothing falls through the cracks.
Using these tools and software can save time and streamline your follow-up email process, allowing you to focus on other important aspects of your business. However, it's important to remember that while automation can help you save time and increase efficiency, it's still essential to personalize your follow-up emails and tailor them to your specific audience and goals.
Email marketing has become an increasingly important tool for e-commerce businesses. It’s a great way to reach out to customers and build relationships with them. However, it’s also important to remember that email marketing is not a one-size-fits-all solution and needs careful planning and execution to succeed.
So, if you are looking for ways to boost your e-commerce business, consider investing in email marketing – it could be the key to unlocking your success! You can count on Starling’s 20+ years of experience publishing content online to create effective blog posts, newsletters, PDFs, and more. Contact us here.
YouTube: the platform that probably needs no introduction. As the world's biggest video platform with billions of users worldwide, YouTube offers a vibrant community where content creators and businesses can connect, express themselves, and engage with audiences on a global scale.
With a user-friendly interface, personalized recommendations, and interactive features, YouTube has carved out an important place as part of our modern digital culture.
Content on the platform shapes our culture, starts trends, discussions, and offers up a space for people to express themselves and connect at a global scale.
What is YouTube Advertising and Why is it Important?
From a business perspective, you might be wondering: what does YouTube offer me?
While there are lots of ways to leverage YouTube videos as part of your content strategy (more on that in a future post) one of the best ways for brands to use the platform is through YouTube Advertising.
What is YouTube Advertising?
YouTube Advertising allows advertisers to create customized ads that can be seen by millions of people around the world.
With YouTube Ads, you can target specific audiences based on their demographics, interests, and other factors. There are also several options available (which we go into below) so you can experiment with different kinds of ads to see what works best.
But before we go into how to create engaging YouTube video ads, let’s dig into some recent updates to the platform’s advertising features:
The Latest Updates in YouTube Advertising
Advertising on YouTube is a totally different landscape than social media or pay-per-click (PPC) ads. These ads have unique constraints and a variety of options that aren’t available on other platforms, so it’s important to have at least a basic understanding of how the platform works.
With this in mind, let’s take a look at the latest changes Google (who own YouTube) have introduced:
Enhanced Brand Safety Measures
One of the biggest risks to advertising is the risk of having your ad shown next to offensive, sensitive, or problematic content, but YouTube’s been hard at work to make sure this doesn’t happen.
As of November 2022 the platform has introduced "clearer language" and "specific guidelines" to ensure ads aren’t placed on adult content, violent or dangerous acts, sensitive events, videos with inappropriate language, and drug-related content.
Precise Targeting with User Search History
The platform allows advertisers to target viewers based not just on their YouTube viewing behaviours, but also on their Google search history. This means you can now target ads at people who have recently searched for a specific product or service.
By aligning the content of your video ad with a viewer's recent searches, you can increase the likelihood of them watching the entire ad or clicking through to your website.
Embracing Audio Ads
Podcasts are some of the most hotly-consumed content online (41% of people in the US tune into a podcast every month, alone) and as a result audio-only content has become increasingly more popular.
As a result, Google has introduced audio-only ads for YouTube.
While starting with video ads is recommended, audio ads can be a useful addition to your ad library once you've developed your brand voice and have the data to know what kind of messaging resonates most with your audience.
Improved Data Attribution Models
If you know us you know we love data, which is why we love how much Google has improved its ability to measure user engagement with YouTube ads.
Using the analytics dashboard, you can learn about important details like your cost-per-conversion and gain insights into the performance of your YouTube ads alongside your Search and Shopping ads' reports.
YouTube Advertising Cost and Value
YouTube ad costs are based on views, with each view typically ranging between $0.05 and $0.10, depending on your industry and target keywords.
Compared to traditional Google Search, where the average cost per click is estimated to be between $1 - $2 per click depending on your industry, YouTube offers a cost-effective way to target your audience with engaging video or audio content.
10 Ways to Make the Most Out of Your YouTube Ads
1. Define Clear Objectives
Before jumping into YouTube advertising feet-first you need to to establish clear objectives.
Ask yourself: What do you want to achieve?
Take the time to decide what a “successful” campaign looks like. Whether it's increasing brand awareness, driving website traffic, generating leads, or boosting conversions, having a well-defined goal will guide your strategy and help you measure your campaign's effectiveness.
2. Develop an Effective Targeting Strategy
You need to show your ads to the right people in order for them to be effective.
This is known as “ad targeting” and should always be the first step in developing any kind of ad campaign. Here’s how to get started:
Know Your Target Audience
You need to know your target audience inside and out in order to create engaging and relevant ad content. This means doing research into their preferences, interests, and demographics before you even consider creating any ads.
Identifying details like their age, gender, location, and other relevant factors allows you to tailor your content to speak to them and resonate with their needs.
If you already publish content to your own YouTube channel, you can use YouTube Analytics to tap into that treasure trove of data and learn things like your audience’s viewing habits, engagement levels, and the demographics of who watch your videos.
Targeting the Right Users
YouTube offers a variety of targeting options to help you narrow down and reach the specific audience you want to engage with. Make sure to include relevant keywords and optimize your video titles, descriptions, and tags to increase visibility and attract the right users.
Collaborating with influencers or partnering with channels that share a similar target audience (more on this below!) can also be an effective way to reach a broader set of potential viewers.
Understanding YouTube's User Demographics
YouTube has a diverse user base, and understanding its demographics will go a long way to executing a successful YouTube Ads strategy.
Review the demographics of the platform like age groups, gender distribution, and geographical locations of users to tailor your content accordingly.
For example, if your target audience is largely young adults, create content that aligns with their interests and jumping on trending content and themes can help your ads stand out.
2. Choose the Right Types of Ads
YouTube offers several types of ad formats, meaning that you can strategically promote your content, products, or services to your target audience.
Take a look at this list and ask: which of these options would work best for my brand?
TrueView ads are a flexible and user-friendly advertising option. With TrueView in-stream ads, you can engage users before they watch the video they want to see.
You can show your ad at the start, or partway through the video. These ads give viewers the option to skip after a few seconds, meaning you only pay when users decide to watch the entire ad.
TrueView discovery ads appear as thumbnail images along with related videos or in YouTube search results, which encourages viewers to click and explore your content further.
Bumper ads are short, non-skippable video ads that last up to six seconds.
These ads are a great way to deliver a tight, targeted message to viewers and make a lasting impression.
Bumper ads work best when you want to create brand awareness or share a quick teaser that encourages the viewer to learn more.
Display ads on YouTube are banners that show up on the right side of the video or above the video suggestions list and offer an opportunity to promote your brand, products, or services while viewers are browsing or watching videos.
These ads can be static images or animated GIFs, allowing you to grab viewers' attention and drive traffic to your website or landing page.
Overlay ads appear as transparent overlay banners at the bottom of a video and can be either text-based, or display images. They offer a non-intrusive way to deliver your message while keeping the focus on the video content.
These ads offer more information and are generally used to encourage viewers to take a specific action.
3. Craft Compelling Video Ads
Your video ads need to capture attention and tell a compelling story.
Start with a strong hook within the first few seconds to catch viewers’ attention and encourage them to keep watching.
Keep your message concise, focus on the benefits, and showcase what makes your product or service unique.
Don't forget to include a clear call-to-action that encourages viewers to take the next step that you want them to take!
4. Optimize for Mobile
70% of all YouTube views come from a mobile device, so optimizing your ads for mobile is essential.
Make sure your ads have eye-catching graphics, include clear easy to understand language, and engage viewers even on smaller screens.
We also recommend considering vertical video formats (which look best on mobile screens) and subtitles or captions can make your content even more accessible.
5. Leverage Targeting Options
Take advantage of demographic targeting, interests, and affinity audiences to deliver your ads to people who are most likely to be interested in what you offer.
You should also consider utilizing custom intent audiences, which allow you to target viewers based on their search history and recent online activities.
6. Test and Iterate
The honest truth about advertising (and a lot of marketing in general) is that it often takes testing and iterating on an idea to get it right - and YouTube ads are no exception.
Experiment with different ad formats, messaging, targeting options, and calls-to-action to learn what works best with your audience.
Make sure to analyze the performance of your campaigns and make data-driven optimizations to continually improve your results.
7. Monitor Your Ad Performance
We say this all the time but it bears repeating: don’t “set and forget” your ads!
Keep a close eye on your performance metrics to understand what's working and what needs to be adjusted.
Track key metrics on a per-ad basis like the view-through rate, click-through rate, engagement rate, and conversions.
8. Consider Remarketing
Remarketing allows you to re-engage with users who have already interacted with your brand or shown interest in your products or services.
By delivering personalized messaging to users who are already familiar with your brand, you can increase the likelihood of conversions and maximize your advertising efforts.
9. Collaborate with Influencers
Partnering with YouTube influencers can offer a big boost to your brand's visibility and credibility.
Identify influencers within your niche whose audience align with your target audience and work with them to create engaging, authentic content that introduces your products and services to a wider audience.
10. Measure ROI and Adjust Budget
This ties into our earlier point about monitoring your ads, but by continuously looking at the return on investment (ROI) of your YouTube Ads, you can quickly make adjustments to your budget based on how your campaigns are doing.
By staying engaged with your campaigns and taking an “agile” approach (vs. the “set it and forget it” approach we talked about above) you can get the best bang for your advertising buck.
Elevate Your YouTube Ads Today
As we’ve seen, YouTube advertising presents a powerful opportunity to connect with your audience, drive engagement, and achieve your marketing objectives.
By staying informed, creative, and adaptable, you can stay ahead of the curve and make the most of this powerful advertising platform. And hey - if all of this is sounding like a lot of work (and, trust us, it is) we’d be happy to help.
7 Habits of Highly Effective Instagram Marketers - The Insider's Guide to Winning at Social Media Marketing
Why You Should Be Using Instagram for Your Marketing
In today’s digital world, Instagram is one of the most powerful tools for marketing. Its user-friendly interface and powerful analytics make it the perfect platform to help your brand reach a wider audience.
Instagram offers a wide range of features that can be used to promote your business or product. From creating engaging content to utilizing best practices for Instagram marketing, there are many ways to get the most out of this powerful platform.
Whether starting with social media marketing or looking for ways to improve your current strategy, learning how to use Instagram effectively can help you achieve your goals. Let’s look at some tips and tricks that will help you make the most of this popular platform!
Habit 1: Developing a Clear Strategy
If you want to make the most of your Instagram presence, you must have a clear plan. This means defining your goals, identifying your target audience, and determining what content will resonate with them. Here's a quick list of questions to consider when developing your Instagram marketing strategy:
- What are your goals for Instagram marketing?
- Who is your target audience?
- What kind of content will you create to reach your goals and target audience?
These questions will help you create a roadmap that guides your Instagram marketing efforts. A clear strategy will save time and effort in the long run.
Habit 2: Creating Quality Content Above All Else
Quality content should always be the priority when it comes to content creation. Whether you’re creating content for Instagram, a blog, or a website, the quality of your content is what will make it stand out from the rest.
Visual storytelling on Instagram is a great way to engage with your followers and build relationships with them. But if you want to create high-quality visual stories, you need to consider how to make your images stand out from the crowd.
In this section, we’ll discuss some tips on how to create quality content that will help you reach your goals and get noticed by potential customers.
Habit 3: Utilizing Hashtags to Your Full Advantage
Hashtags are a great way to get your content noticed on social media. They can help you increase engagement and reach more people. But if you don't have a good hashtag strategy in place, you won't be able to maximize their potential.
Knowing which hashtags are trending on Instagram or Twitter and which ones are popular for your niche can help you get the most out of your hashtag strategy and make sure that your content is seen by the right people. With the right hashtag strategy, you can make sure that your content stands out from the crowd and reaches its intended audience.
Habit 4: Focusing Your Advertising Efforts on the Right Audiences
Instagram is a great platform for targeting ads and retargeting existing customers. With the right strategies, you can make sure that your ads reach the right people at the right time.
By understanding your target audience on social media, you can create more effective ad campaigns that will be seen by those most likely to engage with your brand. With this knowledge in hand, you can craft messages and visuals that will resonate with potential customers and drive conversions.
Habit 5: Automating and Scheduling Posts with the Right Tools
With the right tools and software, automating and scheduling posts on social media can be a breeze. Gone are the days when you had to manually post on each platform to get your message out - now you can use automation tools to do it for you.
These tools make it easy for you to schedule posts, find content ideas, and even track engagement. So if you're a busy marketer or business owner who wants to save time and effort when it comes to managing your social media accounts, these automation tools are worth looking into!
Habit 6: Posting Visually Appealing Content
Instagram is a highly visual platform, so making your content look good is important. Appealing images and videos help build a strong brand identity and establish trust with your audience. It's all about creating a consistent look and feel for your brand, using high-quality images to grab attention, and telling stories with visuals that will leave a lasting impression. With the right combination of visuals, you can make sure that your content stands out from the competition and keeps your audience engaged.
Habit 7: Engaging With Your Followers
It’s no secret that engaging with your followers is the key to success on social media. But how do you do it? Fortunately, there are a ton of effective ways to make sure that you're connecting with your audience in the most meaningful way possible. Some of the key ways to engage with your followers include:
- Liking and commenting on their posts
- Responding to Direct Messages
- Running giveaways and contests
- Asking for feedback and opinions
- Replying to comments and mentions
- Hosting Instagram Live sessions
- Featuring user-generated content
- Collaborating with followers and influencers
- Encouraging engagement through captions
- Monitoring and responding to comments
- Personalizing interactions with followers
We can’t stress enough the importance of showing up authentically on your Instagram Stories. We get it, you want your feed to look pretty, but people want to support the people behind a brand. Don’t be afraid to show what your day-to-day work-life looks like, books you read, or fun office conversations!
Using these strategies, you can build stronger relationships with your followers and keep them returning for more. Whether you're trying to boost engagement, drive traffic to your website, or increase sales, engaging with your followers is vital to achieving your goals on Instagram.
Social media has become an invaluable tool for businesses and organizations to reach out to their target audience. With the help of social media management tools, or digital marketing agencies like Starling Social, businesses can easily manage their presence on different social networks. They can also use social media ads to promote their products and services to a wider audience.
Social media platforms like Instagram are essential components of marketing strategies today. Businesses that understand the power of these tools will be able to leverage them to maximize their reach and engagement with potential customers. If you need help with your strategy or are ready to take digital marketing off your plate, contact us here to get started.
Whether you manage your own digital marketing or you’re a manager with a team to lead, it’s easy to let your marketing tasks pile up and for quality to slip when things get busy.
If this sounds familiar, then it might be time to consider outsourcing to an agency partner!
What Does Outsourcing Your Digital Marketing Look Like?
Outsourcing is the process of hiring external service providers to perform specific tasks for your business. It can be a great way to save time and money, as well as help you focus on what you do best.
By outsourcing certain marketing roles like social media content creation and publishing, content writing, or SEO, you can free up resources to reinvest in other areas of your business that will help drive growth.
As a result, not only does outsourcing allow your business scale faster, but it also helps it stay competitive in their respective industries.
Whether you’re a small business owner who’s tired of trying to do everything themselves, or a Marketing Manager looking for ways to help your team focus on more important tasks, outsourcing to an agency is a great (and affordable!) option.
In this post we’ll be looking at the top 5 roles to consider outsourcing so you can make the best choice for yourself and your digital marketing:
1. Social Media Management - How to Find the Right Agency for the Job
Social media is an essential part of any business’ digital marketing strategy, but it’s also one of the most time-consuming parts, too.
Effective social media campaigns need to be founded on strategy and deep understanding of your brand in order for them to be properly managed and executed - and that’s just the high-level part!
Social media managers are also responsible for:
- Content planning and creation
- Coordinating creating Reels, TikToks and video content
- Community engagement
- Campaign management
- Performance tracking
Because social media management is so time-consuming, it’s often the first thing that businesses look to outsource to a partner.
The Top Benefits of Outsourcing Social Media Marketing
Tapping Into Industry Expertise
It can be hard to keep up with the latest digital marketing trends and platform changes, which is why outsourcing this role can be such a boon for a business.
Social media managers need to be up-to-date with the latest algorithm updates, changes to video and image specs, character length changes, hashtag updates… and more!
Their job is to stay current and apply their knowledge to your social media strategy so you don’t have to.
Time and Resource Savings
Managing social media channels is time-consuming, effort, and resources.
By outsourcing this role, you can free up your internal team to focus more pressing tasks and deliverables while the experts handle your social media presence. This helps your team be more agile, less reactive, and ultimately more productive.
Consistent and Engaging Content
One of the biggest assets to outsourcing your social media marketing is knowing that you’ll always have a consistent posting schedule, no matter how busy you are.
Social media managers also have deep knowledge of the kind of content that will resonate with your audience and create positive associations with your brand, and will work hard to iterate and keep finding new ways to engage with your audience.
Effective social media management is more than just posting consistently. A worthwhile outsourcing partner will be consistently looking at key performance indicators (KPIs) and engagement levels with your content to improve results over time.
By looking at the data and submitting regular progress reports, your social media manager can share their results, explain their thinking, and give you opportunities to discuss and make decisions based on data, not just gut feelings.
(P.S. Did you know that Starling Social offers monthly reporting as part of all our service packages? Click here to learn more!)
How to Find the Right Outsourcing Partner
Here’s the tea: most marketers can talk the talk, but are they also walking the walk?
One of the easiest ways to see if the agency you’re considering is going to be able to deliver effective social media management services for you is to look at things like:
- Their social media presence. Do they have public profiles on the major platforms that are well-maintained?
- The posts they publish. Do they seem like they keep up with the latest trends and changes?
- The content they share. Does it feel like they’re showcasing expertise, or just posting generic content to keep the lights on?
2. SEO - How to Identify Quality SEO Providers for Maximum Results
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) helps to increase website visibility and rankings in search engine results pages (SERPs) which lead to more organic traffic and conversions, making it is another essential component of any digital marketing campaign.
But with so many SEO providers out there, it can be hard to know which one is the right choice for your business. Here are four things to look for:
Experience and Expertise
SEO is constantly changing, so look for an SEO partner with a proven track record and extensive experience in their field. Don’t be afraid to ask for testimonials or for their input on the latest strategies to make sure their approach is up-to-date.
A Transparent and Ethical Approach
Choose an SEO partner that follows ethical “white hat” SEO practices and maintains transparency throughout the process.
They should be open about their approach, provide regular progress reports, and offer clear communication channels.
Avoid partners that engage in black hat tactics, as these can lead to penalties and damage your website's reputation.
Every website is unique, which means an SEO strategy should have requirements, goals, and target audiences specific to your business and website’s needs.
A reliable SEO partner will take the time to understand your business and develop tailored strategies to meet your needs. This should start with a comprehensive website audit, competitor analysis, and keyword research to create an effective SEO plan that aligns with your objectives.
Measurable Results and Reporting
Look for an SEO partner that uses data-driven decision-making and provides measurable results.
They should have tools and systems in place to track keyword rankings, organic traffic, conversion rates, and other relevant metrics.
Regular reporting and analysis of these metrics will help you gauge the effectiveness of their SEO efforts, make informed decisions, and understand the return on investment (ROI) of your ad spend.
3. Copywriting - Outsourcing Content Creation to a Copywriting Expert
One of the fastest ways to amplify the ROI of your marketing efforts is to outsource your content creation to a copywriting expert.
Professional copywriters are experienced in creating content for the web, including blogs, newsletters, whitepapers, website copy, and more. They’ll take the time to understand your business and create compelling content that engages readers and resonates with your audience.
What to Look For When Outsourcing Copywriting?
If you aren’t a professional writer yourself, it can feel overwhelming to figure out how to choose the right copywriting partner to outsource your needs to.
Here are a few things to look for:
Ask for work samples from a handful of clients in different industries. Seeing examples will help you get a sense of how the writer can tailor their work to different businesses and industries.
Different kinds of content
Don’t just stick to one kind of work sample - ask for blogs, newsletters, and other kinds of content to get a sense of the range the copywriter is able to achieve.
Voice and tone
Does their copy sound wooden and stiff, or is it approachable and easy to understand?
General advice is that copy for the web should be written for an 8th grade reading level, so when reviewing work samples, ask: is this written in a way that anyone can understand, or does it include a lot of jargon?
4. Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising — How to Choose The Best PPC Partner
PPC advertising is the process of advertising on search engines like Google and Bing. With this type of advertising, you only get charged when someone clicks on your ad (hence the name, Pay-Per-Click).
PPC advertising is a highly targeted type of marketing that plays an important role in driving people who are looking specifically for your product or service to your website.
Unfortunately, PPC advertising is complicated and has a steep learning curve to create and manage effective campaigns — this isn’t a “set it and forget it” kind of marketing!
Elements of a Successful PPC Campaign
Whether you’re new to PPC or you’ve tried to manage your own, there are a few key elements of a successful PPC campaign that any outsourcing partner should be familiar with:
The process involves embedding conversion tracking codes on your website to track actions that align with your campaign goals, like form submissions, purchases, or downloads.
Your PPC outsourcing partner will then use this data to better understand user behaviour, which types of keyword combinations are working best, and will make adjustments based on the data.
Your PPC partner should regularly check their Google Analytics and Google Ads dashboards to monitor website traffic, user activity, and engagement metrics.
A competent PPC expert shouldn’t just apply what they see to your campaigns; they should also be proactive in helping you update and optimize your website to rank higher, earn better scores with Google, and ultimately increase conversions.
Like we said, this isn’t a “set it and forget it” kind of campaign! Regularly review performance reports provided by your PPC agency partner.
Pay attention to key metrics like click-through rates, cost per click, conversion rates, and cost per conversion. These reports will help you understand the effectiveness of your campaigns and identify areas for improvement.
PPC is one type of ad campaign where A/B testing isn’t just recommended - it’s essential!
Making sure your PPC outsourcing partner is A/B testing to compare different elements of your PPC campaigns will help you better-understand differences in ad copy, visuals, landing pages, or call-to-action statements.
This experimentation allows you to identify the most effective strategies and make data-backed decisions to optimize your campaigns.
(P.S. Did you know that Starling Social’s resident PPC expert has been running campaigns since Yahoo! was the main search engine? That means we’ve got decades of experience under our belt and are ready to help you build effective campaigns!)
Advantages of Outsourcing Your PPC
It probably comes as no surprise that there are several advantages to outsourcing your PPC campaigns, including:
Expertise and Specialization
As we’ve been saying: PPC campaigns are complicated, so outsourcing your advertising to a seasoned professional can mean the difference between a wanted budget, and a well-optimized one that gets results.
Your PPC partner will also do the “leg work” of staying updated with the latest trends, strategies, and tools to ensure your ads are highly targeted and optimized for maximum impact.
Cost and Time Savings
PPC campaigns are probably the most hands-on kinds of ads you can run, requiring constant monitoring, optimization, and analysis.
By outsourcing these tasks, you save valuable time and resources by working with partners who already have the necessary tools and resources to efficiently manage your campaigns.
This reduces costs associated with in-house hiring, training, and campaign management, saving you even more money in the long run.
Advanced Targeting and Ad Optimization
A seasoned PPC expert will excel in audience targeting and ad optimization.
Before even touching your campaigns, they’ll spend time researching to identify relevant keywords, demographics, and geographic targeting parameters to reach your ideal audience.
As the campaigns progress, they’ll also perform A/B testing, ad copy optimization, and landing page optimization to maximize conversion rates.
Performance Tracking and Reporting
We’ve said this before but it bears repairing, especially when it comes to PPC campaigns:
An agency or outsourcing partner who doesn’t submit monthly reports is doing you a disservice.
PPC campaigns are complicated and require a lot of attention and updating, so your PPC partner should be able to show what they’re doing each month, as well and provide you with changes, trends, and opportunities for consideration in order to make your campaigns more successful.
5. Social Media Advertising — Finding a Trustworthy Social Media Ads Partner
Social media advertising is pretty self-explanatory: it’s the process of promoting your brand, products, or services through paid advertisements on various social media platforms.
This type of advertising offers unparalleled opportunities to reach a highly targeted audience, increase brand awareness, drive website traffic, and generate leads or sales. Other benefits include being cost-effective and allowing you to reach a diverse range of people who might be interested in your products or services.
Why Outsource Your Social Media Advertising?
While social media ads aren’t quite as complicated as PPC advertising, there are still several reasons why outsourcing your social media ads management is a good idea. These include:
Expertise and Industry Knowledge
Running ads on Facebook or Instagram is different from running ads on LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, or TikTok, and your outsourcing partner should be able to explain the differences between them, as well as be up-to-date on the latest changes to each platform’s advertising rules and specifications.
Time and Resource Efficiency
Managing social media ad campaigns takes time, effort, and resources to set up, optimize, and adjust throughout the life of the campaign.
By outsourcing these tasks, you can spend your time and resources focusing on managing your business or your team without having to worry about the status of your campaigns.
Targeting and Ad Optimization
Your social media ads partner will understand how to use advanced targeting techniques, be able to advise you on the best types of ads to run on a per-platform basis.
They’ll also be able to help you craft compelling ads with the right formats, visuals, and copy to stop users mid-scroll and encourage them to engage with your ads.
Free Up Your To-Do List! Start Outsourcing Your Marketing Today
By outsourcing your digital marketing tasks like social media management, SEO, copywriting, pay-per-click advertising, and social media advertising, you can free up valuable time and resources to focus on the big picture.
Not only can you sleep easily knowing that your digital marketing is taken care of, but you can enjoy the benefits that come with dedicated expertise, transparent reporting and collaboration, and a commitment to helping your business grow and achieve its goals.
Ready to hand off those overwhelming digital marketing tasks and focus on more important things? Drop us a line, we’re onboarding new clients right now.
Understanding your customers is a crucial aspect of running a successful business. Knowing who your customers are can help you tailor your marketing messages, products, and services to their specific needs, preferences, and interests.
Fortunately, with the help of software, you can easily find out who your customers are and what they like.
In this article, we'll explore some tools that you can use to research your customers from social media, email campaigns, and website activity.
Social Media Analytics Tools
Social media is a treasure trove of customer data, and social media analytics tools can help you extract insights from your followers and audience.
These tools provide in-depth analytics on your social media followers, such as their demographics, location, and interests.
You can also use these tools to monitor conversations about your brand and industry on social media, which can provide valuable insights into what your customers are talking about and what they care about.
Email Campaign Analytics Tools
If you run email campaigns, you can use email campaign analytics tools to track your subscribers' behaviour and preferences.
Some popular email campaign analytics tools include:
These tools provide data on how your subscribers engage with your emails, such as open rates, click-through rates, and unsubscribe rates.
You can also use these tools to segment your email list based on various criteria, such as demographics, behaviour, and preferences, which can help you tailor your messages to specific groups of customers.
Website Analytics Tools
Your website is another valuable source of customer data, and website analytics tools can help you track your visitors' behaviour and preferences.
Some popular website analytics tools include:
These tools provide data on your website traffic, such as the number of visitors, their location, and their behaviour on your site.
You can also use these tools to track specific events on your site, like clicks on certain buttons or pages, which can help you understand how your customers interact with your site and what they're looking for.
Start Getting to Know Your Customers Today!
Understanding your customers is essential for running a successful business.
You can gather valuable data on your customers' demographics, behaviour, and preferences by using social media analytics tools, email campaign analytics tools, and website analytics tools.
This information can help you tailor your marketing messages, products, and services to your customer's specific needs and interests, leading to higher customer satisfaction, loyalty, and sales.
So, if you haven't already, consider using these tools to research your customers and unlock the power of customer insights. Need help doing a deep dive? Drop us a line!
It’s here! Meta’s long-awaited Twitter competitor, Threads, launched late last night and already got over 30 million sign ups as of this morning.
Some people are speculating that Meta moved up the app’s launch because Elon Musk sent Twitter users fleeing from the platform after he announced that Twitter would limit the amount of tweets a user can see in a day
Things are moving quickly right now, but as of *checks watch* 12 PM CST, here’s what you need to know:
What is Threads by Meta?
Threads is Meta’s competitor to Twitter and is connected to your Instagram account.
The app is linked to your Instagram account and your feed will include posts from people you follow, as well as recommendations based on what the algorithm thinks you’ll like.
(Protip: if you want to start tailoring your feed, just “hide” posts from accounts you don’t follow and don’t want to see. The earlier you do this, the faster the algorithm can learn!)
Will Threads Stick Around?
So far it looks like it will, thanks to some smart moves from the Instagram team.
The trick to Threads’ immediate success is that even though it’s technically a standalone app, it’s connected to Instagram and allows you to add your existing contacts in under a minute by using the “auto-follow” button.
Goodbye, slow follower growth! Now you’ve got a brand new community made up (mostly, more on that below) of people you already follow.
Should Your Brand be on Threads?
YES. As Twitter tanks and a new platform to showcase your brand’s personality emerges, it’s critical to claim your account and start posting asap.
How is Threads Different?
A Different Value Proposition from Twitter
Threads is a place to share your personality, your thoughts, spicy memes and hot takes. It’s a laid-back place (think Twitter circa 2010).
Threads Offers More Ownership Over Your Content
Unlike some other social platforms, Adam Mosseri has stated that Threads is committed to building support for ActivityPub, the protocol behind Mastodon.
So if you wind up leaving Threads, you can take your content with you.
High-Level Details About Threads
Below are a few things to keep in mind as you start getting your footing on the platform:
- Posts can be up to 500 characters long and can include links, videos, gifs, and video
- Videos can be up to five minutes long
- You can switch between light and dark mode in the app
- Hashtags are currently not available, but a post from Adam Mosseri confirmed that hashtags are coming, so stay tuned for those
- You can post gifs (just open your Gipfy app and copy/paste)
- Currently you can’t switch between accounts - you need to log out and back in
- No DMs (so far)
- Right now your feed is a combination of a For You page and accounts the algorithm thinks you’ll like
- People are using a conversational, personal tone. Don’t sound all “B2B” please!
What’s a Good First Thread?
Introduce yourself! Something as simple as “Hello world, we’re ____” is great, but including a picture of yourself, your team, or your pets is even better.
Remember: this is your chance to start developing your brand’s identity on the platform, so don’t be afraid to let your freak flag shine and be casual, silly, and even a little weird if that’s your jam.
What’s a Good Threads Strategy?
The challenge brands face on the platform is that most of your initial followers will be coming from Instagram, so they’ll be used to seeing photo and video-based content.
With that in mind, at this stage we recommend that brands take a similar approach to their Twitter content strategy: primarily text-based, using emojis to break up text, and include urls in your posts.
From there, you’ll want to start experimenting with your top-performing photo content from other platforms… but don’t overdo it, especially this early on! Users are very sensitive to brands getting overly salesy and shoehorning content 1:1 in from other apps.
So for now (at least), avoid repurposing your Reels and TikToks.
What About Mastodon, Spill, Hive and all the rest?
Honestly? RIP to those platforms. Threads ate their lunch because the platform launched with audiences already built in, cutting out the effort of trying to build up a following from scratch.
These platforms don’t have enough differentiating factors to attract users away from Twitter or Threads. So while it’s still advisable to claim your brand’s name on every new social network, we don’t recommend spending time making content there. Stick to your existing platforms and Threads.
What Else Should You Know About Threads?
Who knows! Right now it’s kind of a Wild West (and we’re here for it) — one of the best parts about our industry is that it’s always changing, so we’ll be keeping our eyes peeled for the latest updates and sharing them in our weekly newsletter.
For more updates (and spicy memes and hot takes) give us a follow on Threads.
Today, social media is a must-have for law firms to boost their online presence, connect with clients, and attract new business opportunities.
Platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn have been popular options for years, but Instagram has become a powerful tool for law firm marketing in recent years for a variety of reasons.
Instagram's unique blend of video and image-based content makes it a perfect place to showcase your firm's values, expertise, and success stories, and connect with both potential clients and employees.
In this blog post, we'll explore some key strategies and techniques to effectively use Instagram as a marketing tool for your law firm.
Establishing an Engaging Instagram Presence
Start by creating a professional Instagram profile that reflects your law firm's brand. Use a high-quality profile picture and write an interesting bio that communicates your firm's expertise and what makes you unique.
Consistent branding, tone, and visuals will help you build credibility and attract followers, so consider how to use elements like Stories Highlights to tell deeper stories about the firm, what it's like to work there, and the kind of work you do.
Create Eye-Catching Content
Instagram is a platform where being creative can pay off in spades.
Think about creating eye-catching graphics, videos, and infographics that offer valuable legal insights, answer common legal questions, or showcase recent case successes. Don't be afraid to play with colour, different template types and video cuts, and jump on trending Reels that fit the firm's brand.
Enhance your posts with thought-provoking captions and questions to increase engagement, and use targeted hashtags that help users who fit your ideal follower profile or live in your area find you.
Humanizing Your Firm
Instagram gives you a chance to show the human side of your firm by sharing the personalities and stories behind its legal expertise.
Give glimpses behind the scenes of your firm's culture, introduce your team members, highlight community involvement, and talk about philanthropic initiatives. This helps build trust, create personal connections, and set your firm apart from the competition.
Use Client Testimonials as Social Proof
User-generated content (UGC) can be a powerful tool for law firms to increase brand reach and credibility.
Encourage your clients and followers to share their positive experiences with your firm and tag your Instagram handle in their posts.
Repost and acknowledge these testimonials, client success stories, or reviews on your firm's feed.
Grow Your Community
Engaging with potential clients and industry influencers can help expand your reach and establish your law firm as a reliable authority.
Regularly interact with your followers by responding to comments, direct messages, and mentions. Join legal conversations, provide concise legal advice where appropriate, and share your expertise in response to relevant inquiries.
Collaborate with Influencers
Partnering with influencers can be a great way to amplify your firm's reach and visibility, and increase brand awareness with a wider audience.
Identify influencers in the legal or related industries who have a significant following and share your firm's values.
Collaborate with them to create content, conduct interviews, or host live discussions to share insights and expertise.
Run Targeted Instagram Ads
Instagram advertising can help law firms reach a more specific audience and generate leads.
Use Instagram's ad targeting features to tailor your ads to specific demographics, locations, or interests relevant to your target audience.
Promote content like legal guides, webinars, or upcoming events to actively engage potential clients. Make sure to regularly monitor your ad performance and make adjustments to optimize their effectiveness.
Instagram has evolved into a valuable marketing platform for law firms, offering a unique opportunity to connect with clients, showcase expertise, and stand out from the competition.
Now that we've talked about how to get started on the platform, let's dig into one of the most valuable ways your firm can use Instagram: as a tool for recruiting and retention!
How Law Firms Can Use Instagram for Recruiting and Retention
In addition to its marketing potential, Instagram can be a valuable tool for law firms when it comes to recruiting and retaining top talent, especially among the younger generation who are active users of the platform.
By leveraging Instagram's features and engaging with potential candidates, your firm can enhance its recruitment efforts and use the platform to showcase a positive and engaging work environment that fosters employee satisfaction and retention.
Not sure how to get started? Try these tips:
Showcase Firm Culture and Values
Think about the best aspects of working at your firm and use them as the pillars of your content strategy on the platform.
Share photos and videos highlighting team-building activities, social events, community involvement, and any unique perks or benefits that set your firm apart.
You can attract candidates who resonate with your firm's values by portraying an inclusive, collaborative, and supportive work atmosphere.
Share Attorney Spotlights and Success Stories
Highlighting the accomplishments and stories of your attorneys can be an effective way to attract talent and establish your firm's credibility.
Create regular attorney spotlights that delve into their professional achievements, career progression, and notable cases.
Showcase diverse career paths and success stories to demonstrate growth opportunities within your firm. This type of content appeals to potential candidates and reinforces a sense of pride and loyalty among existing employees.
Engage with Law Students and Young Professionals
Law students and young professionals often turn to Instagram for networking and career insights.
Engaging with this demographic by sharing valuable resources, hosting Q&A sessions, or providing career advice can help your firm build relationships and attract promising talent.
Consider partnering with law schools, legal organizations, or influential legal professionals to provide internship opportunities, mentorship programs, or educational content. This proactive engagement demonstrates your firm's commitment to fostering the growth and development of aspiring legal professionals.
Share Employee Takeovers and Behind-the-Scenes Content
Empower your staff to take over your firm's Instagram account for a day to provide an authentic look into their roles and workdays.
This behind-the-scenes content gives potential candidates a firsthand glimpse of the firm's work dynamics and helps them picture themselves as part of the team.
Encourage employees to share their experiences, challenges, and achievements, showcasing the diversity of roles and the rewarding nature of working at your firm.
Share Employee Testimonials and Reviews
Like client testimonials, featuring employee testimonials and reviews can be a powerful tool in attracting top talent.
Encourage your team members to share their experiences, growth opportunities, and job satisfaction through Reels.
These testimonials and stories should highlight their personal and professional development within the firm and emphasize your law firm's supportive and nurturing environment.
Seeing happy, engaged team members can significantly influence the decision-making process of potential candidates and enhance employee retention by reinforcing a positive company culture.
Showcase Professional Development Opportunities
Attract ambitious and growth-oriented candidates by highlighting ongoing professional development initiatives, like training programs, workshops, or conferences.
This showcases your firm's commitment to investing in its employees' continuous learning and skill enhancement, shows that your firm values professional growth, and is willing to provide opportunities for career advancement.
Start Sharing Your Law Firm's Content on Instagram Today
As we've seen, Instagram can be a valuable tool for law firms to stand out from the competition, attract diverse and ambitious new team members, and create cross-promotional opportunities by partnering with law schools, legal organizations, or influential legal professionals.
Incorporating Instagram into your firm's marketing and recruitment strategy can help you create lasting connections with your ideal clients and with talented individuals who will contribute to your firm's growth.
Looking for more guides and insights to help your law firm think differently about your digital marketing? Subscribe to our weekly digital marketing newsletter or contact us today to talk about how we can partner with your firm to stand out online.
Blogging consistently is…hard. Carving out the time to write, sourcing (or taking) photos, unscrambling your thoughts, researching your topic, writing new versions of the blog to promote on your other channels, and possibly the hardest part: deciding on a topic.
Blogs are also a powerful tool for small businesses. They can reduce overall marketing costs, build trust with potential customers, boost SEO, generate leads, and gain exposure. When you demonstrate your expertise through blog posts, you establish yourself as an expert in your field.
By creating a blog that resonates with your target audience and delivers valuable information, you can establish your brand as a trusted resource and attract more customers who are interested in your products or services.
We like to look at blogs as an opportunity to create buzzworthy content that can gain exposure on social media. Plus, it’s a great way to force yourself to stay up-to-date with industry trends.
So, if you’ve told yourself 100 times that you’re going to commit to blogging this year and you’ve come down with a case of the quiet cursor — we’ve been there. And we’re betting that’s pretty high on the list of reasons why you aren’t blogging. We’ve got your back. Read this list of 29 blog post ideas to attract your ideal customers. It’ll help.
Thought Leadership Posts
1. Industry News and Trends
When you are swamped with work, the last thing you have time to do is look for new trends. Blogging about industry trends forces you to do your research and share your insights and opinions on how these changes could impact your customers.
2. Industry Event Coverage
Turn the last industry event you went to into a blog. Cover your takeaways, key learnings, and stories from the day with your readers. This also doubles as a journal for yourself to remember the event in the future. Make sure to write it while it’s still fresh in your mind and timely for your readers.
3. Pros and Cons
Choose a subject that resonates with your audience. Walk them through the advantages and disadvantages, enabling your readers to make an informed decision.
4. Industry Predictions
Predict future trends or changes in your industry, positioning your business as a thought leader and influencer.
Let’s start with an easy one that can probably be repurposed into several blogs. Think about all the questions you are frequently asked and answer them in a blog — these should also live on a special spot on your website.
6. How-To Guides
These are so helpful! Provide your readers with practical, step-by-step guides that help them solve problems or accomplish specific tasks related to your products or services. Plus, making a TikTok or Reel to accompany this blog is easy.
7. Case Studies
Show off your skills! Demonstrate how your products or services have helped your customers achieve their goals.
8. Product Reviews
Review products related to your industry. Provide value to your readers with an in-depth analysis of the pros and cons of new products and whether they're worth the investment.
If you — or your customers are visual learners, then use an infographic to tell your information. Canva makes that super easy. Plug in your fonts, colours, and logos and choose one of their many templates. Just fill in your own information and download!
10. Q&A Sessions
Turn an Instagram Live/TikTok Live, etc. session into a blog. Compile a list of questions from your customers, giving your readers the opportunity to ask questions and get answers.
11. Myth Busters
Compile a list of misconceptions about your industry and clear them up for your audience.
Anything. People love a list. Top 10s. Best of X.
13. Pick a Pop Culture Moment and Tie It To Your Biz
We do this a lot in the form of memes, but it works in blog format too.
14. Behind-The-Scenes Look
Give your readers a sneak peek into your biz when you share BTS stories about your team, processes, and operations. We love this one because it also adds human connection to your brand.
15. Life or Career Hacks
You have a unique perspective on your business. What’s something you live by that makes a big difference in your business?
16. Things You Wish You Knew When You Started
Something most business owners can relate to is that they have failed. Probably a lot. If you could go back in time and tell the little you that was just starting out a little bit of advice, what would it be?
17. Motivational Tips
Times are tough. Sometimes a little guidance goes a long way. Share tips people can use to get them through challenges. Bonus points if you add personal experience.
18. History Lesson
Is there a particular history behind something you do? How about the building you work in or a product you use? Share it with your readers.
19. Feature Your Team
Give your audience a chance to connect with your team members. This blog can be a great way to show your team that they are appreciated.
20. The Why Behind What You Do
If you are passionate about your business, let your audience know why. When your audience knows they are supporting someone who loves what they do, it makes them want to support you more. It’s a win-win!
21. Book Suggestions For Your Industry
Who doesn’t love a good book?! Include key takeaways, quotes you loved, and maybe even a link to a local bookstore.
22. The Ultimate A-Z on XYZ
Create a comprehensive guide covering all aspects of a specific topic in your blog post, ensuring that your readers can get all the information they need without looking elsewhere. Nowadays, you can find almost anything on the internet if you look in the right places. Don’t worry about giving away too much information because it’s likely already out there. People may as well find it on your page. Make the post as extensive as possible to provide a one-stop resource for your readers.
23. Seasonal Content
Do you have new products in the summer? How about holiday gift guides? Back-to-school tips? Make a list of content ideas you would like to share over specific holidays, and your future self will thank you!
24. Guest Posts
Invite industry experts or thought leaders to contribute to your blog, providing your readers with fresh perspectives and insights.
25. Share Your Vision/Mission Statement
Transparency in business is key. If you’re just in it to “make money,” that’s boring and unlikely to fulfill your life — or your team’s. Get everyone on the same page so you can work toward a common goal. You can use this as your yearly goal-setting guide too!
26. Ask Your Readers What They Want
You can do this in a social media post, over the phone, or with a customer you are emailing. They probably will come up with something tey are curious about in your industry right away!
27. Ask Your Team
Your team is your most precious resource — if you have one. They probably have great ideas about what to post, or at least can share their insights on their expertise!
28. Explain an Idea in a New Way
Did you have a blog post that performed really well? Why don’t you share the same information in a new way? Be sure to space it out from the last similar blog, but this is a great way to get new eyes on your page with the content you know people enjoy!
29. Research Your Competitors
Don’t copy them, but … get some inspiration.
You can boost your blog's following by producing content that strikes a chord with your target audience. Maintaining consistency with your brand's tone and message is crucial while providing content that enriches your readers' lives.
Having said that, we get it. When you're busy running your business, finding the time to brainstorm new ideas and craft high-quality blog posts is tough. The good news is that we can do it for you. Send us an email to get started on your marketing efforts with Starling Social today!