SFdigital https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk Tue, 11 Sep 2018 10:39:35 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.6 Our Top 10 Social Media Fails https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/our-top-10-social-media-fails Tue, 11 Sep 2018 10:39:35 +0000 https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/our-top-10-social-media-fails Continue ReadingOur Top 10 Social Media Fails]]>

No-one is immune to the odd spelling mistake or grammar inaccuracy, but when you’re running huge social media accounts, these mistakes become magnified. Most large companies would be forgiven for the odd mis-tweet, but we’ve been digging and have unearthed the 10 worst mistakes made on social media.

10. Cinnabon

Carrie Fisher sadly died in December 2016. On the occasion of her death, one corporation took to Twitter and attempted to pay tribute to her life that would, of course, also sell products: Cinnabon displayed a picture of her as Princess Leia, but with a Cinnabon Classic Roll in place of her famous Star Wars hair-do. Users were quick to call out Cinnabon, saying they were piggy-backing on someone’s death and showing a complete lack of empathy to her friends, family and thousands of fans. Plus, it was a repeat: they’d already shown the image back on May 4th (Star Wars Day), saying her buns were the second best to theirs.

9. Whoever ran Susan Boyle’s Twitter when she released her first album probably wished they had re-read their promotional hashtag after missing its alternative message to Twitter users. Thus highlighting the importance of using capital letters… #Susanalbumparty.

 

8. On Black Friday, 2017, Mcdonald’s official twitter account published a tweet that seemed, shall we say, incomplete:

 

 

7. HMV probably should have made sure the social networks were under control before it started to fire dozens of employees, including the social media manager it seems. The soon-to-be-former employees took the opportunity to live tweet the 60+ people getting sacked, seriously damaging the company’s reputation during an already testing time for the firm.

6. When you pay a company to do your Facebook ads for you, they really should have some knowledge of how much your products cost. We were surprised to learn that no-one used this opportunity to claim a Corvette for $15,000…

5. In October 2017, Dove posted a video showing a black woman removing her brown shirt and transforming into a white woman. The ad evoked the incredibly racist soap ads of the past, in which dark skin was portrayed as dirty and social media quickly spread the offensive ad around. Dove apologised for the ad and said it ‘missed the mark’. That it most certainly did.

4. The United States Air Force used the Yanny/Laurel debate to make an incredibly tasteless joke. The tweet was widely criticised online for being insensitive and diminishing the potential loss of civilian lives in the Middle East during the conflict that was ongoing at the time. The tweet was quickly deleted.

3. With a show watched by more than 6 million people, the result of The Great British Bake Off 2017 was greatly anticipated. However, the result was somewhat tarnished for many as Prue Leith, one of the show’s very own judges, mistakenly tweeted the final result 6 hours prior to the show airing. Her mistake was blamed on a difference in time zone, as Prue was holidaying in Bhutan at the time. Lesson learned: make sure your scheduling software is set to the correct time zone.

2. In 2017, McDonald’s tweeted an explicitly political post from its official account and briefly pinned it to the top of their page. It was quickly taken down, but managed to rack up over 1,500 likes and 1,400 retweets, as well as garnering reactions from angry Trump supporters rallying behind the #BoycottMcDonalds hashtag. McDonald’s issued an apology and claimed that their account had been hacked, and they were not responsible for the tweet.

1. Pepsi’s two-and-a-half minute ad “Live for Now,” featured Kendall Jenner leaving her modelling job to join a nondescript protest. In the ad, tensions are mounting between protesters and police, that is, until Jenner magically solves everything by opening a Pepsi for a cop. Both Pepsi and Kendal Jenner were accused of failing to recognise that Black Lives Matter and the ad was pulled after 24 hours. Both Kendal and Pepsi apologised, admitting they had “missed the mark”.

 

Bonus entry: Ed Balls. April 28th is the day we celebrate the anniversary of that time Ed Balls, former MP, accidentally tweeted out his own name on Twitter. After the tweet went viral, Ed explained that he had been typing in his name into the ‘compose tweet’ field instead of the search box. An easy mistake to make, but one that would have long lasting ramifications. The tweet now has over 100 thousand retweets and people still celebrate Ed Balls day over 7 years later.

 

So what can we take away from these embarrassing social media fails?

  • Invest in security. If your account is compromised, you lose all control. Be sure to take the time and invest in strong security measures, including training for your employees so they’ll rotate and maintain strong passwords.
  • Double-check everything. It’s only going to take a few minutes to check your post for typos or hidden implications before it goes out. It is a good idea to have someone in your office to proofread everything you send out, as a fresh pair of eyes could spot something you didn’t.
  • Politics is a dangerous game. If you end up on the “wrong” side, even accidentally, you’ll face heavy backlash. Even if you’re on the “right” side, if you’re seen as insensitive or inaccurate in your presentation, people will condemn you for it.

If you make a mistake, be honest and admit to it. Every business is going to make a mistake at some point, whether it be a small typo or a larger misjudgement. The ones that stand to recover easily are those that immediately and humbly admit to their mistakes, and try to make up for them in an honest and open way.

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Buffer vs. Hootsuite vs. Sprout Social https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/buffer-vs-hootsuite-vs-sprout-social Tue, 31 Jul 2018 14:16:03 +0000 https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/buffer-vs-hootsuite-vs-sprout-social Continue ReadingBuffer vs. Hootsuite vs. Sprout Social]]>

Buffer, Hootsuite or Sprout Social: Which is Best?

Hootsuite, Buffer, Sprout. You might have heard of these social media softwares. If not, they are all designed to do pretty similar things: to help you schedule your content across multiple social media platforms and post them for you according to your schedule. But what’s the difference? We spent one week using each programme. Here’s what we found.

Hootsuite

Let’s start with Hootsuite. This was one of the first of this kind. But does it really help you organise your social media posts, updates and analytics as well as it promises?

Anyone can register for a free account with Hootsuite, which gives you access to its most basic features. We started by adding and verifying the social accounts that you want Hootsuite to have access to. We used Facebook, Twitter and Linked In, as we use these the most.

At first, the Hootsuite dashboard can look a little confusing. It took us a while to get our heads around it, but once we started browsing, it became pretty self-explanatory. The main two features that we used were the ‘streams’ section of the dashboard (we set ours to refresh every 10 minutes, but for busier accounts you are given the option to refresh up to every two minutes.) This gives an overview of all the social accounts you have set up, and gives you a good overview of what is happening across them. The other main use was the publisher, this is where you actually create and schedule your posts.

What’s great about the publisher is that it allows you to add media, shrink links and add locations as well as tag accounts. The only slight downside is that you aren’t able to schedule a poll. This needs to be done directly through Twitter, not ideal for us.

Overall, we found Hootsuite to be pretty user friendly, practical, and to the point. It is also one of only a few social media marketing tools that support the management of multiple YouTube accounts, along with the ability to schedule video posts to your social networking profiles – a huge advantage if you or your business utilise this platform. You can also use it to delegate tasks with other users, making it a great option for a team platform, especially if you use your accounts to manage customer queries.

The support was good, we tweeted them and got a quick and helpful reply, but we only tested their support system in a very minimal way. For your basic social management needs, (Pro plan) it is pretty reasonable. One of the main disadvantages of it is the initial appearance of the Hootsuite dashboard, as it can appear confusing and intimidating for newbies (and non newbies). The free plan also only allows the integration of three social channels, which hugely limits those for whom it will be practical.

Overall, we’ve given it  8/10.

Buffer

Buffer is a platform you might not have heard of if you don’t work in digital marketing. Buffer is a content publishing platform, letting you publish and schedule content to social networks.

Buffer is a smaller tool, it doesn’t publish as many social networks as Hootsuite, it has less features, and less analytics tools. But this doesn’t mean to say that we didn’t still find it useful.

One of the main disadvantages of Buffer is its inability to interact. Whilst you can post, cross post and schedule content, you can not engage with it. That means if someone were to respond to your tweet, you would not be able to respond through Buffer, unlike Hootsuite.

Hootsuite offers analytics of your social networks, whilst Buffer offers analytics only on the posts you’ve published via the platform. If you are solely using Buffer to post social content this is fine as all your data will be contained within the software, but this is unlikely going to be the case. Buffer analytics are pretty much content analytics, so you can see your best and worst performing posts based on engagement (which you can filter by engagement type, e.g. retweets, favourites, replies, likes, comments, clicks), reach and post type (i.e. image posts, link posts, text posts and your retweets). Buffer shows you all this data in a simple and clean layout, as well as in the mobile app too, so you can track your content performance on the go. All of this is exportable too so if you need to do any further analysis, or send it to other people, it is very easy to do so. The layout is one of our favourite parts of Buffer, especially when you compare it to the complicated, slightly boxy dashboard of Hootsuite. It is also much easier to use on mobile, which is great if you’re regularly posting on the go.

Overall, we liked Buffer. However, if you’re looking for a social media management platform, then Buffer isn’t probably isn’t for you, not because it’s a bad tool (far from it), but because it’s just not what Buffer is meant for. It is great for helping you publish and schedule content, is very user friendly and its simplicity is definitely a winning factor.

Note: None of these platforms allow posting to Instagram if you don’t have a business profile. The only way to post on Instagram is via the official Instagram account. If you are interested in scheduling your Instagram posts then the Buffer mobile app won’t actually post your photos, but will handle them and alert you when the next one should be posted.

Despite its limitations, we’re giving Buffer a 7/10.

 

Sprout Social:

Sprout Social is designed to do just about anything regarding the management of your business’ social media channels. It even offers social listening and influencer identification features and has some social customer relationship management (CRM) functionality.

Like Hootsuite, Sprout allows you to author a message, choose which account it comes from, attach photos, shorten links and choose a target audience from the main feed dashboard. It alsol offers a draft function so you can save posts that aren’t ready for publication and return to them later. A really useful feature on Sprout Social is within the publishing department with its ‘audience discovery’ function. This highlights people or accounts it thinks you may be interested in, as well as spammy or robotic accounts you should probably unfollow. This is the only software (that we have come across) that has this function, and we found it extremely useful.

Whilst all plans include a 30 day free trial, the cheapest monthly package starts at £69 per month (Premium plan), with the most expensive costing £179 a month (Enterprise plan). It is the most expensive platform by far. However, with one of the highest levels of user satisfaction, at 93%, it seems to be worth it.

It makes social management easy and lets team members collaborate over its platform, meaning it is a brilliant tool for customer service. We tested it by assigning customer queries/questions evenly between our digital team and it worked seamlessly, meaning we were able to deliver perfect customer service, and never leave a customer’s query ignored or left for longer than an hour.

Overall, we found sprout social great for engaging with users, easy and effective to publish across multiple platforms seamlessly, and great for analytics. Essentially, it removes the need to log into your accounts altogether by combining everything you need into one place.

Although pricey, we’re rating Sprout our top pick with a 9/10 from us.

 

Of course you could just stick to using the social media platforms themselves, but then you’d be missing out on the host of benefits provided by management software, from saving your precious time to boosting the impact of your posts. For us, Sprout Social came out on top, but we thoroughly recommend testing a few out. Buffer would be great for those use starting out and Hootsuite is perfect for those on a slightly tighter budget.

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Why Businesses can No Longer Afford to Ignore Social Customer Service https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/why-businesses-can-no-longer-afford-to-ignore-social-customer-service Mon, 14 May 2018 12:47:31 +0000 https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/why-businesses-can-no-longer-afford-to-ignore-social-customer-service Continue ReadingWhy Businesses can No Longer Afford to Ignore Social Customer Service]]>

Businesses can no longer afford to ignore social customer service.

For years, customer service has consisted of private conversations between a customer and a customer service advisor. Although this format still exists, social media has made a huge difference to the way businesses communicate with customers.

Because of the public nature of social media, conversations between customers and companies are gaining more and more exposure. A survey of more than 1,000 people by Sprout Social found that 46% of the respondents have “called out” or complained about a business on social media. This public declaration of dissatisfaction with a product/service can have catastrophic consequences for brands if not dealt with properly. The risk associated with not responding professionally and efficiently, or even not responding at all are remarkably damaging. Shauna Adamson took to Facebook to vent her disappointment with make up brand, Urban Decay. This post has had over 2,000 views on the original post, that’s not including shared views. “It’s not that I wanted a refund or free makeup,” Shauna said. “I just wanted to warn people.” You can see how damaging this singular post can be, even to a globally renowned make up brand.

 

An example of the importance of social listening comes from this viral tweet:

Because someone was monitoring Waterstones Twitter account, they were able to act immediately and then tweet 80 minutes later to inform twitter they had freed their previously captive customer. Imagine how this could have turned out if Waterstones customer service had not been monitoring their twitter account that day. 

According to Sprout Social, 30% of people will go to a competitor when ignored on social media, and 26% will be less likely use the company’s product or service. Such consequences are great for customers because they help keep businesses accountable, this is one of the reasons why social media customers service is more important than ever.

The benefits of responding quickly, positively and effectively to customer queries/complaints online are clear to see:

70% are more likely to use your product or service

75%  are likely to share the good experience on their own social media profile

73% will share the positive interaction with their friends

To takeaway – utilise social media customer interactions in order to create strong and lasting relationships with customers, and increase the likelihood of future revenues. Here at Sans Frontiere, we work with clients to help manage and maintain their social media presence, including all aspects of social media customer service. 

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Traditional Marketing – Is there still a place for it? https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/traditional-marketing-is-there-still-a-place-for-it-2 Fri, 11 May 2018 14:03:56 +0000 https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/traditional-marketing-is-there-still-a-place-for-it-2 Continue ReadingTraditional Marketing – Is there still a place for it?]]>

Current conversation around digital marketing may lead you to think that billboards and TV adverts became extinct back in 2012. Of course this is not the case, but there’s no denying that modern marketing channels seem a lot more relevant compared to their analog counter parts.

It is difficult to argue the fact that digital methods offer a number significant advantages over traditional methods like outdoor advertisements, leafleting and print. But the question does need to be asked, does traditional marketing still have relevance in a modern business’ marketing strategy?

Digital marketing’s advantages over traditional medias are compelling. Consumers are constantly becoming savvier, more informed and better equipped when it comes to their buying habits. This is making more traditional marketing methods less appealing, and are therefore losing effectiveness in many markets. People like choosing what content they are seeing, they like interacting with brands and they want to do their own research. Digital marketing appeals directly to these needs, and captivates an audience much more strongly than a billboard or a radio advert.


You don’t need to take my word for it, there are plenty of stats to back these ideas up:

89% of customers use search engines to influence their purchase decisions. 

72% of marketers at the enterprise level consider SEO a successful tactic for achieving marketing objectives like lead generation and increased web traffic. 

18% of local searches lead to a sale within 24 hours. 

89% of consumers search for local businesses on their phone at least once per week, and 58% do so daily.

61% of consumers have their purchasing decisions influenced by custom content.

• Content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing and creates roughly 3 times as many leads.

82% of companies with blogs see positive ROI from their inbound marketing.


Does this mean we should abandon traditional methods for good? Will we never see a billboard again? Will London’s underground escalators be free from irrelevant, jargon filled screen ads forever!? 

Despite what these stats might suggest, there is still a place for traditional marketing media…

Tactics such as TV and radio ads can also be highly effective at mass market branding. Brand recognition developed this way can be leveraged to improve the performance of an existing digital content marketing campaigns.

Outdoor campaigns, such as billboards, phone boxes and other physical adverts, when strategicly placed, can be a great way to improve brand awareness.

Unlike other forms of advertising, billboard ads are competing against truly extreme distractors: high speeds (when placed near roads), distances that could make them illegible, general worldly distractions , to name just a few. But these challenges continue to make advertisers more creative:

 

 

 

 

 

A fantastic use of outdoor advertising, Alaska Airlines created this artwork to visually demonstrate their route to Disneyland. A compelling message amplified by an unexpected format.

“Bite” for Formula Toothcare.

This strong image reinforces their claim “builds strong teeth” in a real and tangible way.

Ads don’t need to be flat. Think laterally and involve otherwise disturbing elements like corners and cracks to enhance your message.

Use locations where viewers are not expecting to be reached. Disrupt the scenery with an ad where the audience gets, quite literally, immersed in.

Overall, the death of traditional media may not be as severe as suggested, and it does still have a place in the marketing industry. A diverse marketing strategy may yield the best results, as focusing solely on digital or traditional methods may mean foregoing the best medium for a particular message.

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3 Reasons Why Maintaining a Social Media Presence is Crucial to any Business https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/3-reasons-why-maintaining-a-social-media-presence-is-crucial-to-any-business-2 Tue, 01 May 2018 09:47:23 +0000 https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/3-reasons-why-maintaining-a-social-media-presence-is-crucial-to-any-business-2 Continue Reading3 Reasons Why Maintaining a Social Media Presence is Crucial to any Business]]>

3 Reasons Why Maintaining a Social Media Presence is Crucial to any Business

Tim Martin, Weatherspoon’s chairman, has recently announced that the company will be closing down all social media accounts effective immediately – “It’s becoming increasingly obvious that people spend too much time on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, and struggle to control the compulsion,” Mr Martin stated last week.

The reason behind this abandonment of all social channels is still under scrutiny, however it has been mentioned that Mr Martin was unhappy with the large presence of internet trolls taking aim at Weatherspoons social accounts. It is true, social media is sometimes unpleasant. People often write things they wouldn’t dream of saying were they face to face with someone, however there is a lot of relevant research that might suggest that was an ill-informed decision:

1 – Using social media for business boosts your site’s SEO – search engines know which sites are actively getting hits, and which are just floating out there in the internet stratosphere. A marketing strategy that aims at increasing Search Engine Optimisation is a crucial part of any approach, and driving traffic to your page via social channels will allow them to climb much higher in the search engine results pages. By eradicating all social media in one brutal hit, you have to question the benefits Mr Martin is hoping to gain aside from a short term peak in publicity.

2 – Social Media is the most efficient tool to connect with and interact with your consumers – If you’re doing it right, social media will lead to real relationship building. Part of what makes platforms like Twitter and Instagram marketing so valuable is the interaction you get to have with your customer base – you can read their tweets, like their pictures, and reply to their direct messages. Insights are more valuable than ever, and with the ability to spot trends and recognise your audiences at the touch of a button, the question remains, why delete all forms of social media?

3 – Users are receptive – If someone is following you, chances are they want to know about you, may you be a business, and friend, or a funny looking dog. Because users are making this choice, they are likely to be receptive of your accounts activity. Because of the way social media started (purely as a platform created to socialise with friends) people widely still don’t view Twitter, Facebook and Instagram as marketing machines. As a result, they are less likely to see your posts as advertisement and be more interested in what you have to say. Tim Martin assured the press that he would be keeping up appearances via more traditional media and press outlets, however whether or not his target audience would receive this form of advertisement as well as they would a social media campaign is still to be decided.

Regarding the decision, Tim Martin said “We are going against conventional wisdom”, this may be true, but I believe that this will not have the positive impact that Mr Martin is hoping to make. In a few weeks time when this strategic move is no longer being spoken about, Weatherspoon’s will be left under represented in the social media world, the ramifications of which are soon to be discovered.

Helena Haycock

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Mobile has overtaken desktop for viewing websites. Are you missing out on sales? https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/mobile-has-overtaken-desktop-for-viewing-websites-are-you-missing-out-on-sales Fri, 02 Dec 2016 00:00:00 +0000 https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/mobile-has-overtaken-desktop-for-viewing-websites-are-you-missing-out-on-sales Continue ReadingMobile has overtaken desktop for viewing websites. Are you missing out on sales?]]> Mobile has overtaken desktop for viewing websites

Mobile has overtaken desktop for viewing websites. With today’s mobile workforce, many potential customers are away from desktop computers and accessing your website on their mobile devices. By not having a mobile optimised site, you will be missing out on your key customers and ultimately, missing out on sales.

Common mistakes for websites on mobile

  • The text is too small so users can’t read the website without zooming in. Desktop sites are being squashed into a mobile screens.
  • Calls to action and buttons are in the wrong place or too small, so users can’t move around your website and make purchases.
  • Your company phone number or address is not prominent enough; users on mobile usually need this information so they can get in touch quickly.

If your website is making these mistakes get in touch and we can review your website.

What are the causes of mobile user increase?

  • Social media has been a huge driver; 90% of Facebook’s daily active users access it via mobile and users are clicking links to your website.
  • Email data tell a similar story; 54% of emails are now opened on mobile so customers are clicking to your website on their mobile.
  • People are searching differently; Google announced last year that there are more searches on mobile than tablet and desktop combined

What does that mean for your existing website?

Quite simply, in a World where mobile has overtaken desktop for viewing websites, you could be missing out on sales and revenue. Some argue that customers do not always purchase via mobile, but even so, they will definitely be researching your products and services to make a purchase later. If your website does not supply this product information easily then you may be negatively impacting your sales. An update last year by Google resulted in non-mobile websites falling down search results ranking, so your company website will be harder to find by your customers and competitors will be displayed instead.

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Fighting off the sharks. How we do WordPress security. https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/fighting-off-the-sharks-how-we-do-wordpress-security Fri, 21 Oct 2016 00:00:00 +0000 https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/fighting-off-the-sharks-how-we-do-wordpress-security Continue ReadingFighting off the sharks. How we do WordPress security.]]> Keeping the sharks out at Sansfrontiere Marketing

At Sans Frontiere, we don’t use a single generic approach to security for all websites and web applications.

As an example, for WordPress sites, we employ a WordPress specific security policy that involves a WordPress specific firewall and a WordPress-centric approach to security hardening.

Did your eyes just glaze over reading that last sentence? If so, you might prefer a metaphor or an analogue for all this techie stuff.

Boats versus Sharks!

If your WordPress website or application is an ocean liner (or even a modest yacht or a tug boat), imagine it floating on the high seas, surrounded by sharks. The sharks want to get into the boat and wreak havoc so they circle your boat, trying to find a vulnerability.

Now your boat could be ultra modern or a nice old vessel, lovingly looked after to keep it seaworthy. In either case, seaworthiness and the ability to fend off the sharks are two different things. Anti-shark defenses are an essential addition to any boat, if you’re serious about keeping the sharks out.

At Sans Frontiere Marketing, we don’t just build websites and launch them onto the sea with a fanfare, leaving them exposed to the predators that we know wait, just out of sight. We equip each vessel we build with a host of anti-shark devices and build in real-time communications to keep us constantly in-touch with every disturbance, every ripple in the water, that your boat encounters. So we know when something changes or when something is blocked or when something needs our attention.

Exit metaphor

We use endpoint Firewalls – which basically means an Application firewall, built into your website. This cannot be bypassed like a Cloud based Firewall can and, since its hooked into your website, it knows what type of visitor each bit of traffic is. It can make better informed decisions and filter traffic more effectively. Its just a lot better.

We use WordPress specific security hardening, moving and renaming files, changing default WordPress values.

We install and manage real-time website monitoring and are notified as soon as something changes or needs updating.

We keep your WordPress core and all your plugins up to date. This means all security related patches are applied when they become available.

 

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Why WordPress development can be a great option https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/why-wordpress-development-can-be-a-great-option Tue, 27 Sep 2016 00:00:00 +0000 https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/why-wordpress-development-can-be-a-great-option Continue ReadingWhy WordPress development can be a great option]]> Wordpress logo

WordPress development enables us.

Its true that WordPress development is one technique among many. So the question is: when to use WordPress.

WordPress is ostensibly a CMS (Content Management System). One among many, but also the World’s most popular CMS by quite a big margin. Not without good cause. WordPress is pretty amazing in many ways, especially given that its Open Source and free. But like any good tool, its as much about how its used as what its capable of. The capabilities only create potential. Not results by themselves.

So what can we do with WordPress and what are the advantages of using this amazing tool?

To see some finished examples of what can be done with the WordPress development approach, just take a look at our Portfolio of Work. Much of it has been achieved using WordPress development. The diversity of the websites in our portfolio, both in terms of design concepts and functionality, should convince you of the power and flexibility of WordPress in the right hands.

Our Portfolio

http://wordpress-13720-56210-149270.cloudwaysapps.com/work/

InstallersMate is a membership application that connects to the GasSafe API, allowing users to create their GasSafe notifications in a simple interface then have every other aspect of this process taken care of for them, including annual reminders, warranty certificates and more.

Cola Stoves is a searchable product database providing a simple interface for potential customers to search, filter and browse these sophisticated products in an intuitive way.

The Ecertsecure website is an attractive and effective online marketing device, showing off their products and services in a contemporary style. The same is true of its sister website, Emergesecure.

As well as a powerful marketing tool, the Ferroli website is doing high transaction ecommerce.

The SEAS website is a huge marketing tool also offering an events system and selling an array of memberships online.

What are the advantages of WordPress development?

Here are the core things:

  • WordPress is a very powerful CMS, out of the box. This means as well as getting a great website you also get great online tools for managing your site.
  • Its Open Source – this means that not only is the toolset free but there is a huge online community supporting WordPress developers. This has been one of the greatest successes of WordPress – to build such a huge online community. Its a big reason why WordPress has become ubiquitous.
  • WordPress is flexible and customisable. Unlike some CMS systems, the WordPress templating system is powerful and flexible. It means there are almost no limits imposed on the scope of what can be achieved in a creative sense. As well as this, the underlying logic of WordPress is flexible too, meaning that in the right hands, the application becomes almost a framework that facilitates development of bespoke functionality.
  • Its is continually evolving.
  • WordPress has an extensible architecture. In short, there are many thousands of very good 3rd party plugins available via the curated WordPress repository – many free and some paid, that add modules of functionality to the WordPress core, extending the scope of what can be achieved beyond almost all limits.

The bottom line however is that, in the right hands, leveraging the power of WordPress can mean huge savings getting an idea or a product off the ground. It means faster, more effective routes from concept to production. A modern marketing agency like ours would be crazy not to be taking advantage of this for our clients.

Examples of solutions that can be built using WordPress plus customisation.

  • Ecommerce
  • Events systems
  • Ticketing systems
  • Directories
  • Bespoke online applications and services
  • Multi-platform apps
  • Membership sites and community portals

If you would like to talk to us about leveraging the power of WordPress, please get in touch

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Make Your Brand Accessible With User Experience https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/make-your-brand-accessible-with-user-experience Thu, 31 Mar 2016 00:00:00 +0000 https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/make-your-brand-accessible-with-user-experience Continue ReadingMake Your Brand Accessible With User Experience]]>

Your brand needs to be accessible. Today’s consumers have a wealth of resources at their fingertips that will influence their purchasing decision. That means you need to provide a positive user experience from the start so what’s the key to making brands accessible?

Younger consumers especially are very savvy and have high expectations for a smooth user experience when they are doing their research. User experience usually refers to the design of websites and apps, but your brand isn’t separate from the experience they have with your communications in all formats– your website, brochures, stores, social media. Their experiences with all these channels will influence their perception of you and your products.

For example, say a user lands on your website on their mobile phone and find that the text is too small for them to read and it’s slow to load. In those few seconds that they get frustrated and they navigate away from your site, you’ve lost that potential customer.

Or, they Tweet you a question about your product and you fail to answer. They feel ignored, and move on.

Let us also not forget that the first taste is always with the eyes: the presentation of your product is often just as important as the product itself. 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual, and humans gravitate towards the aesthetically pleasing. Do not underestimate the value of a well-designed brochure, a beautiful showroom, and an attractive website.

Remember, you don’t have a second chance at a first impression.

Consider Apple – the master of marketing and branding. Sure, they make great products, but it’s the user experience as a whole that really makes them outstanding and aspirational.

Take their showrooms: sophisticated, airy, creative and modern. They create an atmosphere where their product can thrive. Imagine if Apple showrooms looked like the inside of Poundland – it wouldn’t have quite the same effect.

Plus, their showrooms have highly knowledgeable and helpful staff. Apple has an excellent reputation for customer service. Interaction with representatives of Apple contributes to a positive brand and product perception.

And finally their careful branding that from the start had clear differentiators to make them the hip choice of creative and innovators. Their price points and trendy appeal make their products aspirational.

At each touch point they ensure that their first impression is a positive one that’s on brand and provides an excellent user experience.

Evaluate your own brand from first impressions of your website and showroom through to customer service that’s offered post-purchase. How does the experience measure up?

We think there’s always room for improvement!

The post Make Your Brand Accessible With User Experience appeared first on Sans Frontiere Marketing Communications.

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Social media is ONE important part of your marketing strategy https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/social-media-is-one-important-part-of-your-marketing-strategy Wed, 24 Feb 2016 00:00:00 +0000 https://sfdigitalmarketing.co.uk/social-media-is-one-important-part-of-your-marketing-strategy Continue ReadingSocial media is ONE important part of your marketing strategy]]>

A recent article featured on MarketingWeek questions the effectiveness of social media usage in marketing campaigns in terms of ROI. Does investment in social media marketing really lead to increased profits and higher company performance? How do you measure the success of a social media campaign? Are marketers wise to invest time, money and resources into social media advertising without a guarantee of success?

This has long been up for debate.

Social media advertising alone may not be sufficient to produce lucrative results for a business, but it is a key part of an integrated marketing campaign. Here’s why.

More than a logo

The benefits of social media marketing go way beyond potential financial gains for a company – increased brand recognition, accessibility and loyalty, and better search engine rankings are just a few of the potential positive outcomes.

Social media creates opportunities for action and engagement with your existing and potential customers. Having an active social presence demonstrates to your customers that you are transparent, open to dialogue and willing to offer customer service where they find it easy to access. It humanizes your business.

Insight

Engaging with your audience also provides you with insight. Monitoring social media behaviours and responses helps businesses understand customers’ needs and interests. Do they respond better to cute cats or cute dogs? This is so valuable when you are planning campaign messaging and targeting.

Plus, if you play it right, it’s a great way to get honest feedback (good or bad!) that can help you improve your service and business as a whole.

It’s expected

Most B2C and many B2B brands have embraced, to varying degrees of enthusiasm, social media as part of their marketing and customer service strategies. You don’t want to lose out to competitors who undermine your legitimacy because they are happily active on Twitter and you are not. Give the people what they want.

Developing a social media presence is crucial to a business for relationship building and growing your audience, as well as improving the overall customer experience. The amount of time required to invest in social media marketing, set up and maintain profiles is minimal compared to the potential benefits your company is likely to gain in the long run.

In action: Deliveroo

The London based start-up and upmarket takeaway service, Deliveroo, has recently raised a huge amount of venture funding and is rapidly expanding its services to cities across the world.

Does Deliveroo have an established social media presence? An unequivocal YES, with Facebook and Twitter pages maintained and updated regularly, often multiple times a day.

However the key thing to ‘takeaway’ (couldn’t resist, sorry) is that while they’re making great headway with new audiences on social, this is only ONE part of Deliveroo’s marketing campaign.

They’re an internet business! You order on an app! Surely all their advertising is online? Wrong.

Recently I’ve seen a huge push in Brighton, where I live, with distribution of direct mail flyers, advertising on buses and uniformed Deliveroo staff out and about across town, highly visible and engaging directly with the public. They are still embracing traditional channels and as a whole, it’s working. They’re in the real world.

Social media is a huge part of their strategy that drives those conversions after initial awareness and offers a way to interact with customers.

But you can’t stop there.

Social media alone is not enough of marketing strategy on it’s own, but even though ROI can be less tangible than cold hard cash, social activity and advertising are key ingredients to a marketing campaign heading for success – make sure you’re on board!

For information on how Sans Frontiere can assist you with implementing and managing a social media presence and advertising campaign for your company, please do get in touch for a free consultation.

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