Saturday, April 29, 2017

Weekend Favs April 29

Weekend Favs April 29 written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing

My weekend blog post routine includes posting links to a handful of tools or great content I ran across during the week.

I don’t go into depth about the finds, but encourage you to check them out if they sound interesting. The photo in the post is a favorite for the week from an online source or one that I took out there on the road.

  • PeakFeed – PeakFeed makes it easy to monitor your brand’s social media efforts by automatically sending you a weekly email with stats from all of your accounts.
  • And Co – From proposal to payment: A proactive app to give you more time to do what you love – your work.
  • Token – Your personal gifting assistant, always ready to help you send something that shows exactly how you feel.

These are my weekend favs, I would love to hear about some of yours – Tweet me @ducttape

from Duct Tape Marketing

Friday, April 28, 2017

Marketing Day: Facebook rights manager, pixel upgrades & earnings reports

Here’s our recap of what happened in online marketing today, as reported on Marketing Land and other places across the web.

Please visit Marketing Land for the full article.

from Marketing Land - Internet Marketing News, Strategies & Tips

Report: Google Assistant beats rivals for questions answered and accuracy

Cortana was second for questions answered, Alexa second-best for accuracy.

Please visit Marketing Land for the full article.

from Marketing Land - Internet Marketing News, Strategies & Tips

How to Create the Ultimate Marketing Plan

Four out of five B2B buyers start their journey with a web search. Nearly three quarters of the buying process is complete by the time a prospect is ready to engage with your sales team. With customers now in control, how do you create an effective marketing plan that resonates with target...

Please visit Marketing Land for the full article.

from Marketing Land - Internet Marketing News, Strategies & Tips

Brandwatch, Crimson Hexagon join Twitter’s Official Partner program

With Sprinklr, Sprout Social and Conversocial, these social analytics firms will have early access to Twitter data and product development.

Please visit Marketing Land for the full article.

from Marketing Land - Internet Marketing News, Strategies & Tips

IBM enlists Watson to define customer segments and insights

Through a newly expanded Marketing Insights, the supercomputing platform is defining customer groups by such goals as engagement and long-term value.

Please visit Marketing Land for the full article.

from Marketing Land - Internet Marketing News, Strategies & Tips

Marketing Automation Rocks But Let’s Not Forget the Human Elements

Marketing automation has been a game changer in terms of the time, money, and human error savings. It’s allowed us to learn more, do more, react faster, and target more effectively. Adding a machine element to just about anything over the past few centuries, harkening back to the Industrial Revolution, has proven to be an improvement across all industries. And, with the movement toward machine learning and artificial intelligence adding another dimension to marketing automation, there’s even more possible.

Where Machines Miss the Mark

While this is really cool, we can’t forget why marketing is actually science and art -- and how art is something that requires the human element. That’s because, while a computer works with numbers and code, it doesn’t quite get the nuances attached to human emotions that are integral to creating an emotional connection through marketing techniques.

Marketing automation essentially supplies the data that helps a marketer create the strategy, tactics, and content that can achieve the company’s initiatives and financial objectives. Unfortunately, marketing teams and content freelancers everywhere can breathe a sigh of relief because even the best AI software cannot establish a strategy or create content like a human or in a way that customers and prospects would believe it was personable. Plus, a computer has yet to learn the fine art of persuasion – the heart of marketing – that only a human can deliver.

Making the Best of Both Worlds

With the idea that marketing has become a team effort between machines and humans, you can leverage both to deliver an enhanced marketing effort:

  • Assess the data from your marketing automation software to identify a key objective, need, and message for your marketing campaigns. The data will tell you the problem you need to solve for your audience and illustrate their behavior while searching for their answer. This machine-generated intelligence serves as the basis for your marketing strategy and delineates what to say.

  • Leverage the marketing automation to understand the effectiveness of each customer touch point and channel to determine where you will be able to reach the largest portion of your audience. The data will show you if it’s in your store, on your website, or through a social media platform. From there, you can plan any type of automated marketing communication.

  • Create the content and messaging for automated messaging that you may choose to use for email campaigns, social media responses, and mobile marketing messages. This is another place where the human element can personalize the content and imbue an emotional element to the messaging.

  • Don’t overwork your marketing automation system by sending out too much content or run a multitude of campaigns simultaneously. Concentrate on one marketing campaign at a time. Use automation for launch and measurement while applying the human element to the concept and optimization processes. See what the automation analysis delivers so you understand how to improve the next campaign.

  • Don’t set and forget because marketing automation still cannot run entirely on its own and deliver the best results. A human element is also essential to oversee the marketing automation process, regularly checking for how it’s working or what may need to be tweaked.

  • Remember that machines don’t tell us everything we need to know about the data. While they can highlight patterns we might not be able to see, it’s still up to humans to truly understand what those patterns mean and how they can be applied to the strategic marketing process. Only a human marketer can determine the context for the data and specific factors that influence those results whereas a machine can only look at numbers for number’s sake. And, at the end of the day, customers are not numbers – they are people with unique problems and preferences even if there are patterns among them.

Combining Forces

The best way to approach this going forward is to remember that marketing automation can deliver the data that tells us, as marketers, how to create personalized messages. It is these personalized messages where the human element is most needed because it delivers the ability to first understand why customers or prospects behave a certain way and then can hit those emotions for better engagement.

This human element cannot be left out. No matter how much a machine can learn, do, and process, it most likely will never be able to truly emulate the human state full of complex emotions, interactions, and behaviors that only another human will understand (and sometimes we can’t even understand them!).

Busting A Myth

There are no shortage of myths when it comes to marketing automation. For example it is too difficult to deploy and use. Or it's only focused on outbound campaigns. 

Download Busting Common Myths of Marketing Automation to discover how to use marketing automation to attract, engage, and convert buyers across all marketing channels by streamlining workflow, monitoring social, and managing content.

And of course, bust some myths too. 

Image source: Pexels 

from Oracle Blogs | Oracle Marketing Cloud

Someone reposted your Page’s Facebook video? You can now take some of their ad $

Facebook Rights Manager now gives copyright owners new options for dealing with copyright violations, including taking some of the offender's ad revenue.

Please visit Marketing Land for the full article.

from Marketing Land - Internet Marketing News, Strategies & Tips

How Netflix Maintains a Low Churn Rate by Keeping Customers Engaged & Watching

With over 90 million customers watching a combined 125 million hours of television and movies everyday, there’s no doubt that Netflix has changed the way we watch our favorite shows. It has also become a prime force in our daily lives — integrating into everything from mobile devices to our language and culture.

And with a relatively low 9% churn rate (lower than any other subscription streaming service), one has to wonder — how does a service like this continue to keep their customers engaged in both the short and long term? How do they succeed when others fall short? Let’s take a closer look and discover how they do it.

Why Engagement is So Crucial to Netflix

As a subscription service, each new month gives every Netflix users a chance to cancel the service.

Like all subscription companies, the best step Netflix can take to reduce churn is to create a great product that people are willing to pay for. They do this by having a large library of original and licensed content. As long as people keep watching, they’ll keep paying.

Let’s look at how Netflix achieves relatively low churn rates, when compared to their peers.

Reluctant to Switch

With more than a third of U.S. households subscribed to Netflix, it’s no secret they’re far ahead of their competitors (namely Amazon Prime and Hulu Plus) in the video streaming subscription race. Recent research by Parks Associates showed that only 4% of U.S. broadband households cancelled their Netflix service — representing almost 9% of Netflix’s subscriber base.

By comparison, 7% of users cancelled their Hulu Plus subscription within a year — but that figure represents approximately half of Hulu Plus’ current subscriber base.

(OTT refers to “Over the Top” – a term used in broadcasting to refer to internet-based transmission of media without an operator –as in cable or satellite — controlling or distributing the media).

What this tells us, is that not only are most households electing to keep their Netflix subscription and “test the waters” with other streaming services, but those same users keep coming back. But what is it that draws them back?

A Deeper Insight into User Preferences

Perhaps some of what makes Netflix so irresistible among its user base are its original shows. With fan favorites like House of Cards and Orange is the New Black, Netflix has its finger on the pulse of what users are watching. And they’re not just skimming the surface, either. They look at things like:

  • How many users watched a particular episode
  • How many users watched an entire series
  • How much of a gap was there between when the user watched one episode and the next?

And that’s not all. They’re also gathering data on:

  • When you pause, rewind or fast-forward (or if you stop watching and never pick it back up again)
  • What day you watch (most people watch TV shows over the week and movies on the weekend)
  • What date and time you watch, as well as the zip code you’re watching from
  • What device(s) you use to watch which media
  • The ratings you give and the searches you conduct
  • Your browsing and scrolling habits
  • And even the data within the movies and shows themselves

Netflix knows when the credits roll – but it’s also speculated that they’re monitoring things like the volume, movie/show setting, colors and so on. All of this information is not just collected, but also acted upon.

Some might even say that Netflix took a huge gamble ($100 million to be exact) in purchasing the exclusive rights to House of Cards but they did so with a concrete hypothesis — that a large portion of its customers streamed “The Social Network”, directed by David Fincher from beginning to end. House of Cards is also directed by David Fincher. What’s more, they also noticed that films with Kevin Spacey tended to do well, as well as the original British version of House of Cards.

But Netflix didn’t just settle on one trailer to introduce users to House of Cards. Spacey fans saw trailers that exclusively featured him. Women who watched Thelma and Louise saw trailers featuring the female protagonists of House of Cards and big time film buffs saw trailers that reflected Mr. Fincher’s finest directing moments.

All of these points intersected in a way that practically lit up a path to customer engagement and retention. And all of them were made possible thanks to insights delivered by big data.

But this method only attracts users who happen to be watching other movies. What about when they’re not watching? Netflix has that covered, too.

Email: We Added a Show You Might Like

With the vast content library available, it would be overwhelming to not recommend shows to users. So Netflix doesn’t just collect data about the shows you watch — it acts on that data too, sending you emails when a show is added that you may like based on your existing viewing habits.


The email itself is simple and straightforward, and, this is the important part — you can play the episode right from within your mobile device, or add it to your watch list. So it’s not just notifying you that you might enjoy this show, but rather giving you an action to take that lets them better tweak suggestions according to your viewing habits.

Push and In-App Notification – New Season

Many people find push notifications bothersome and frustrating — but it all depends on where they come from. Things that affect users directly – like utilities (your water or electricity is scheduled to be off for a time) or transportation (there’s a car wreck near you that may slow your commute) are definitely wanted.

Movie or series suggestions don’t seem like they’d be high up on users’ priority lists, but Netflix has done a fine job of customizing and fine tuning what gets shown to each user. For example, if you followed season 1 of House of Cards, Netflix lets you know that Season 2 is now available:


What it doesn’t do is inundate you with notifications when every new season or every new movie is listed. Each push notification is carefully crafted again, based on the data from your viewing habits. This way, it’s not intrusive, but rather engaging.

Recommendations for You

Netflix is also famous for its recommendations. It knows it has just 90 seconds or less to convince you that there’s something worth watching that’s catered to your tastes, it looks at things such as the genre you watch and your ratings, but also what you don’t watch. There’s a very real problem of overwhelming the user — with so many choices, Netflix doesn’t want to get too personal.

And it doesn’t care so much about what you watch, but rather that you watch. When given the choice between calling a friend, reading a book or watching Netflix, they obviously want you to keep coming back.

And although Netflix does push its own original series up on its recommendation pages, it plays a flat fee to content providers, so there’s no reason for its recommendation algorithm to favor one series over another. Everything it recommends to you, it does not just because of your viewing habits today, but also historically.

All of these options filter in to create a uniquely personalized — but not too personal — list of recommendations specifically tailored to each user. An engaged user is a happy user, and Netflix is pulling out all the stops to keep them watching.

Interestingly enough, the personalization algorithm resets every 24 hours, making it more likely that users will keep discovering current titles of interest from Netflix’s ever-growing catalog.

Split Testing

Not surprisingly, Netflix also does a great deal of split testing — a couple hundred tests each year to be exact. It randomly selects around 300,000 users from around the world and tests everything from images to font size.

Whenever major changes are made, such as a homepage redesign, users are understandably upset and backlash is imminent – it’s in our nature to tend to resist change. However, Netflix does a good job of easing them into the new design by explaining what has changed and why. According to Netflix’s vice president of product innovation, Chris Jaffe, however, less than half of their tests have a positive impact on metrics.


Even still, with so many options to keep users informed across nearly every type of device, Netflix is continuing to test, innovate and refine its algorithms to prevent churn and keep users watching — and those users are at its core in a quest for never-ending user experience growth.

What are your thoughts on Netflix’s methods to keep you hooked? Have you discovered new shows as a result of their recommendations? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!

About the Author: Sherice Jacob helps business owners improve website design and increase conversion rates through compelling copywriting, user-friendly design and smart analytics analysis. Learn more at and download your free web copy tune-up and conversion checklist today!

from The Kissmetrics Marketing Blog

How to secure buy-in for your content marketing program expansion

How do you get your executive team to recognize the need to expand your content marketing program? Columnist Rachel Lindteigen shares tips to help you lay the groundwork and find success.

Please visit Marketing Land for the full article.

from Marketing Land - Internet Marketing News, Strategies & Tips

Are you grateful for digital? Part 2: Q&A

Columnist Lewish Gersh sits down with Lynn Wunderman, Director at Pebble Post, to discuss why digital and all the data at our fingertips are a mixed blessing for marketers.

Please visit Marketing Land for the full article.

from Marketing Land - Internet Marketing News, Strategies & Tips

You’re Going to Have to Get Good at Video

Get Into VideoI’ve been experimenting with making and editing video lately. I’m not doing it for my jollies or because I think I’m damned good looking (which I am). It’s because WE (humanity) has demonstrated loud and clear that we want to CONSUME video. We prefer it to text. And if that’s true, and you and I are in the business of communicating, we’re going to have to make video. Oh, and it’ll have to be good.

But What Do People Want?

People consume over 1 billion hours of YouTube video every day. You might not be part of that stat YET, but it’s because you haven’t gone looking for videos that cover topics you’d actually want to watch yet. My mom and dad really like poker. So I went to YouTube and typed in “Texas Holdem Tips” and got a few million results (like this one). Maybe you’re an aspiring author but don’t have the time to write a book. I found this video about how to write a book in 24 hours. (Sounds dubious to me as an author, but I didn’t watch the video.)

Continue Reading

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