Win of The Week- Facebook Advertising Small Ball

Sircle- WIN of the Week

Our client Direct Eats recently launched an awesome new website and they looked to us to help them with a smart social media strategy to help drive awareness. Upon launch we focused heavily on driving traffic to the site from both their current base (fans, emails) and new prospects, via strategic targeting, including special interest groups and fans of competitor brands. This was very successful and while the goal was only traffic to start, it produced some really nice revenue and a ROAS around 5 to 1.

Screen Shot 2016-09-20 at 9.05.21 AMNow that we had started the funnel, we took a close look at Google Analytics and user behavior and then created some social content that would present the types of products or categories that users were interested in. We created the post you see here and then boosted it to 2 distinct groups:

$10 at website visitors from the last 30 days – because we wanted to retarget them with a nice looking piece of content and drive behavior with a limited time offer CTA.

$10 to fans of the brand – because fans really take to new and newsworthy content from the brands they follow, especially “insiders only” type messaging.

 

Both produced 3 direct transactions on the website, as you can see below:

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The first row shows the retargeting results, which as you can see had much less reach and engagement than the second row, which shows the fan target. That being said, it packed a nice punch and produced the same amount of sales. We turned $20 into $130 with some smart execution and a willingness to invest. Clearly, both have merit and warrant continued experimentation.

These types of small ball tactics, are precisely what make social media management so exciting and such a vital role to any organization who has online initiatives and goals (as all should).  This client launched a new website, with better functionality and UX and then leveraged Facebook to drive revenue and results. Well played guys, well played!

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Win of The Week: $5 in Facebook spend = $424 in revenue!

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We are big fans of paid social and we have shared our POV on the benefits of paying to play on Facebook here before.  With Facebook, sometimes the simplest of tactics can produce some really profound results.

In the image above we created a nice looking (Facebook optimized) piece of native content to help our awesome client Black Halo announce that they have new arrivals on their website. For a fashion brand that regularly releases new lines and updated SKU counts, this makes for some really simple and newsworthy information.  Sure we could deploy some really tactical strategic targeting (and we do of course) aiming at fans of competitors in the dress category, retargeting visitors to their dress pages and/or even members of their email list, but here it was a simple announcement and we just put $5 behind targeting their fans.

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For a brand who has not deployed any Cost Per Like (CPL) campaigns targeting new and unfamiliar users to meet their brand, their fan base is more “real and earned” than most. These are users who actually like the brand and their garments and therefore, new product arrival announcements are of real value.

As a result, $5 in guaranteed delivery to fans led to $424 in new revenue. That revenue was also the best kind, because it was on their own website and at full retail, which means it is the highest margin business they earn as a brand.

Mark that as a win for social media!

 

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Win of The Week-Influencer Programs Ring The Register

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Our client DeliverLean has been relying on social media to be a resource for branding, awareness and exposure since it’s inception. As the company has evolved from just a concept to an Inc 500 list member, it has continuously looked for different ways to use social to help advance the company.

In 2016 we turned to a more aggressive paid social plan, including a full funnel clicks and conversions strategy, a very successful lead ads campaign and the use of Instagram Ads too.  They are a local brand, looking to target various health, diet and fitness subsets within a defined geographic region, and nothing is more well suited for this than The Social Network.

In a different type of “paid social” effort, we also have deployed an influencer program that leverages local users who have big followings, to help them spread the word and convert new customers. We offer a monetary reward for each new user earned from that person, as well as a discount on product for them to enjoy too.

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These efforts are incredibly effective because you now have the endorsement from a “trusted individual,” at least in the eyes of their follower/fan base. We like this strategy with this client in particular, because they aren’t just posing with the product- they are actually using it themselves and are actual customers of the company.  You get their stamp of approval, and with images like the ones above, you are also painting a desire picture (two super fit people eating their product) which helps convert users subconsciously.

We have talked before about how social media is not a marketing vertical and shouldn’t only be evaluated by ROI and KPI terms, but that being said most brands still lean that way. This is is an example where you can directly attribute revenue to social media efforts and the return is tremendous. It is not the only reason you embark on a long term social media plan, but it is definitely one that will keep the client, especially the one’s in the C-suite happy.

 

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Win of The Week- Instagram Small Ball Tactics = $ales

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Instagram is a fantastic social network and brands in all industries (especially fashion) have taken to it as a way to story tell and display their style.  It is easy to use, mobile based and is a direct line to people’s pockets.  We like Instagram, because it is another platform to help brands sell product to customers.

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Here is a screenshot from one of our client’s Google Analytics dashboards, showing traffic over a the month of April from the link in their bio. Most brands think that Instagram is not a facilitator of traffic, and that is just not true. Here you see a healthy flow of users to their domain, an “off the charts” low bounce rate and these users are staying for 2+ minutes and visiting 6.5+ pages per session. These are unbelievable numbers!

What we like to see even more than that, is the sale for $104 that came from these efforts. When we started with this client they actually said “Instagram wont make us money, but we think it is important to post photos just to stay relevant” and we said- trust in the fact that the hard work and exposure will pay off and will ring the register.  It is so satisfying to see that pan out!

We also manage Instagram Ads for this client and that has yielded much more revenue, but this organic, small ball sale is even more attractive to us.  It is a combination of hashtag stuffing, influencer tagging and honing in on the best time of day, frequency and cadence in our content delivery.  This surge in traffic and sale, came on a Saturday afternoon, from a post we made at an optimal time for this particular brand.  Goes to show you that paying attention to data, being active on a weekend and deploying smart tactics can pay off.

To seal the deal on Instagram for this (and most of our fashion brands) we implemented the ability to have “shoppable Instagram” and in this client’s case we set them up with Foursixty as a partner.  This approach has helped them convert a lot of business on the gram and proven out that this platform can be a real driver of revenue. Like anything in life, it is all about the execution!

 

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Facebook Lead Ads

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For any business looking to generate leads, you should be investing in Facebook’s Lead Ads.  The social network has simplified the process allowing users to subscribe to your email list with just two simple clicks (SUBSCRIBE/SUBMIT).  The information is pulled right from their profile and every user has an active email associated with their account, so you know the inputs are legit.

You can also require additional fields such as phone numbers, and though more inputs can lead to attrition, we are finding that the performance is excellent.  When you employ Facebook’s powerful targeting along with great creative you can generate tremendous results. Perhaps you want to target fans of your biggest competitor who live in the Los Angeles Area? Create an Ad that speaks to a pain point that you know they are experiencing (high cost, bad taste etc.) and then tell them to provide their email to learn more about how to fix it.

Also if you are doing digital the right way, you already have a re-targeting pixel on your webpage. You track every user who visits the site and clicks on a certain item and then leaves without a purchase. Now you can catch the user on Facebook, showing them the photo of the same product and rather than just sending them back to the site again you can offer them the ability to subscribe to your email list to get notified about future discounts on products just like the one they viewed. Just another smart way to bring prospects further down the sales funnel.

For those who think social doesn’t generate business, Lead Ads provide more evidence that you are wrong.

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Email Capture + WOM Marketing: Kill Two Birds With One Stone

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Are you capturing emails?  You definitely should be.  Emails are such an important component of your online marketing success. This “traditional” online channel allows you to get into your client’s/prospect’s email box which is more accessible than ever before given the proliferation of smartphone usage. This means you have an increased likelihood to get their attention, especially while on the move.

If you have a real content marketing strategy (as you should) then you will have relevant “stuff” to share with them outside of products and sales. You should be sending out content laden and behavior based emails to your various lists on a consistent basis and remain committed to providing value.

To get started, you need to get creative with your method for capturing emails.  Here our client Bombas Socks (who is just awesome all around) is being very smart, because they are capturing emails while also getting consumers to do some marketing for them. This is just sound strategy.

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On their homepage (in the top line navigation) they have an offer to get free socks, (which gets a lot of clicks obviously) that takes you to the image above. Once you enter in your own email address, they then tee up the ability to share in a few ways, which either earns them direct email captures OR some shares across social by the user (peer endorsement).

They then are offering a thing of value, in this case 25% off to the new user and a free pair of socks for the advocate. The brand gets new customers, the new customers get introduced to an awesome product (with a discount offer from a friend) and the referrer gets to be a connector to a great brand AND gets a free pair of dope socks. Everyone wins in this scenario and it really works as we see month in and month out.   Well played boys, well played!

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Behavior Based Emails: Get Involved!

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Email remains one of the most effective ways to communicate with your clients and prospects online. Yes social media, search and digital marketing have evolved quite a bit and have afforded brands some really excellent ways to have a conversation with people online. That being said, some good old fashioned email tactics are probably the best way to bring someone closer to an actual sale.

We are always surprised by how many clients don’t email consistently. For those who do, they are almost exclusively doing promotional emails, often referred to as “blasts” which is just an awful and non-strategic term.  At Sircle Media we encourage clients to take their email strategy much more seriously and to have a balance of promotional, informational-content laden emails and behavior based emails.

Promotional emails could be a sale, a special offer or a new product announcement. Those are fairly self explanatory and of course there are tons of different things you could do to improve performance. That is another post altogether.

Informational-content laden posts allow you to share information and content with users outside of the product or service you wish to sell them. It is mission critical to have a conversation beyond the sale, if you want to build a brand and an emotional connection and attachment to your brand or business.

Behavior based emails are probably the least commonly employed, but potentially the most powerful in your arsenal. If you aren’t using them, you should rethink your game plan ASAP. We put together this video to explain them a bit further:

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Content Marketing + Facebook Retargeting Ads = Revenue!

We are big believers in using onsite content as a tool to drive traffic to your website. Sure you want to sell them products or services, but sometimes you need to court them with something of value before you sell to them.  You must have different “fishing poles” in the water when trying to corral new (or repeat for that matter) customers online.

Sometimes content can even work as the closer of business, rather than the driver of new traffic. We employ retargeting both on the web and on Facebook to bring back visitors, and getting really specific with the content can be the difference maker.  Below you can see a little snapshot from a random 3 day period, that showcases just some of the retargeting experimentation we did for one of our clients.

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Veestro-Fbad-Juice-01_1024x1024We saw that users were coming to the website and looking at their ‘Juice Cleanse Product’ and were staying awhile, but not purchasing. We inferred that they were interested, but perhaps the price point and the fact that it was online were deterrents to making an immediate purchase.  So we immediately published a blog titled “Why Do A Juice Cleanse” and then ran an Ad with the creative to the left, that targeted visitors to the Juice Cleanse page in the past 7 days, but did not purchase.

The results, (highlighted in yellow) were fantastic. On this specific strategy, we spent $14.40 and generated $1,768 in revenue. That is some “juicy” ROI (see what we did there)!  Bottom line – you need to be creating content, looking at your Google Analytics (religiously), employing Facebook Ads and experimenting constantly.  Get in the game, and don’t leave money on the table!

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Social Media- Beyond Fans and Followers

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I think one thing that sets our agency apart from the others is that I’m a salesman first and foremost.  Because of this, my wiring is to build businesses, generate revenue and close sales.  I’m not a creative who decided to open an agency and I’m not a PR person reinventing himself in social.  I am a business builder who is looking for ways to add revenue to the bottom line and grow.   This is an important distinction because I think most business owners still think social media is important, but does not generate dollars and this just isn’t true. Every day I get up, come into the office and get to work to prove the doubters wrong and to help my clients win online.

Social media has evolved over the last few years and it’s moved away from fans and followers and more towards a holistic digital approach. This has been our take on social from day one which I think gives us a leg up and helps us get ahead.  Helping clients understand this is usually the hardest part, because some even say that they hired us because they feel competitor pressure to get in the game, but they are fully expecting that it doesn’t lead to sales.  Not only does it directly generate revenue, it also helps them convert sales in other, less tangible areas too.

When we work with clients, we look at their website, content, emails, promotions, search and social as all being part of an ecosystem.  We then develop strategies that help our clients navigate that ecosystem the right way.   Some of our greatest success stories are felt behind the scenes in sales, web traffic and email captures and often less so in fan growth or retweets.  This wider view on social is mission critical if you want to truly succeed.

When we start with clients we go deep and we reverse engineer a plan based on their main objectives.  Now they usually have many, so we have to create a balanced approach to social media.  That being said we always recommend that they get their house in order first.  Some have Google Analytics, but never check them or worse don’t even know how to.  Some capture email addresses, but don’t send out emails.  Some post on social networks, but never respond when people speak to them on those channels.   Things are just a mess.

The truth is that social media is just a new term for the internet.  Social networks are just some of the tools you use to navigate today’s web, but not the only ones.  You really need to have a wider view on social media, and somebody at the helm who can drive the ship and keep you on track.  I touched on this in a piece I wrote for Forbes a few months back and I live it every day. Managing a brand’s social media is a full time position (or multiple full time positions) and needs to be integrated into your bigger digital strategy.

As retail continues to struggle and more and more consumers turn to the web and mobile, you need to make sure your thinking and your approach are in order.   Your web traffic, fans, followers, emails, prospects and of course your customers, are all opportunities to tell your story and grow your business. Be wise, or you are planning your demise…

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Promoted Pins = Potential Purchases!

We are running Promoted Pins for many of our clients these days and we are seeing some amazing results.  We only encourage them for those with an e-commerce focus and who are willing to pay to acquire a new customer. Pinterest offers you access to a lot of really engaged users and those who are ready to spend.  We recommend having a discount code (we actually refer to it as an acquisition code for those who don’t like to “discount their products”) to help fish for users and get them back to the domain.

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Recently we ran the above campaign for our amazing client Veestro to promote some of their delicious products. We spent a total of $23.20 and earned 57,000+ impressions served up to a very targeted and specific audience.  On top of the reach, we earned 58 clicks to the domain, 67 REPINS to specific boards and 21 LIKES from targeted users.

Screen Shot 2015-10-14 at 9.55.41 AMPromoted Pins have an ancillary benefit in that once you see these REPINS and LIKES you can then click through and engage those users directly as the brand on the platform.  Now you can strike up a one to one conversation with someone who saw your Ad, and went so far as to pin it to a personal board (REAL EXAMPLES: Food I love, YUM, Food I need to try) which clearly showcases their thoughts on the item. This is a unique opportunity that is not available on any other platform.

We then go in and curate these engagements for our clients and engage the users in a friendly conversation to further the relationship.  This is a manual process, but very well worth the effort in our opinion.

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Here is an example of that conversation turning into a potential sales opportunity with a user who has a real interest in Vegan food (perfect fit for our client). Some brands stay away from Pinterest because they don’t fully grasp the true potential of the ecosystem.  We engage regularly with users by way of repinning, liking and even commenting on user pictures. Promoted pins are excellent because they give you exposure, tee up a bunch of immediate engagement opportunities and if you strike while the iron is hot, you can facilitate sales opportunities right then and there. = $ocial Win!

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