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What type of Facebook Content Performs Best for Businesses?

The popularity of social media has made many businesses rethink the way they reach their customers. Millions of businesses around the world rely specifically on Facebook, the reigning social media giant, to connect with people.

In fact, there are more than 80 million small businesses using Facebook Business Pages!

Brands of all kinds have found massive success using social media to promote themselves. It’s cost-effective and relatively easy to serve ads to Facebook users, highlight new products, share company news, and connect with customers.

In 2018, Facebook made major changes to its algorithm — the process that determines the order in which posts appear on a user’s newsfeed.

The new algorithm shifted the focus away from posts by brands and businesses towards posts from friends and family, which naturally had quite an impact for brands with business pages on Facebook.

The change meant a drop in engagement for business pages – within some categories, by as much as 50%.

It’s a staggering statistic, but there’s no need to panic now. A study by NewsWhip has found that engagement rebounded significantly since then.


Here’s what you need to know.

Top 10,000 Posts in 2019

According to the analysis of the top 10,000 Facebook posts last year, photos dominated in popularity and performance. It’s clear that images generally get the most engagement, with video following closely in second place, and links third.

The takeaway: there is a very clear preference for visual content.

 

Average Engagement by Post Type

Native video, which is uploaded to or created on a social network as opposed to being hosted on another site and shared to the social platform, drives the highest average engagement and the highest average shares among all types of posts.

The takeaway: native video yields higher engagement than live video!

 

Measuring Engagement through Reactions

There are several ways to measure engagement on a Facebook post including comments, shares, and reactions. Reactions are a unique way to show a response on a post through liking, loving, showing care, laughter, shock, sadness, or anger.

 

The NewsWhip study looked at the overall level of reactions across the top posts from 2019 and determined that the “Like” reaction was the most common type of engagement on top posts with 44% of all the engagement, followed by “Shares” at 34%.

The takeaway: reactions are likely to be the main user response to your posts compared to comments and shares.


Social media is highly visual by nature, and the data proves it.

While text posts and links are still going to get engagement, it’s important to prioritize video & photos in your marketing strategy!

Your Guide to the Perfect Billboard

It’s no secret here at Condron Media – we love outdoor advertising!

Our team firmly believes in well-developed marketing plans that incorporate the right amount of traditional + digital advertising, and billboards are a tried-and-true traditional platform that gets results.

Outdoor advertising has the flexibility to reach people in unique ways. Billboards traditionally come in two sizes – bulletin or poster. Boards can be static vinyl or have rotating digital messages.

“Wallscapes,” which are boards found on the sides of buildings or on walls within parking garages, are growing in popularity in our area.

You can reach commuters with great frequency on well-traveled highways or dominate specific urban areas with your messages through outdoor advertising.

But what makes a billboard great?


 

Copy Tips

As a general rule, the ideal billboard contains 7 words or less.

Drivers are speeding by with only seconds to take in your whole message, so keep it brief and to the point. Determine the core of your message and emphasize it without over-burdening the board.

Choose a font that is large, clear, easy to read, and has proper spacing between each letter or line of text for the best readability.

 

 

Creative Tips

Creative choices on your outdoor design matter just as much as your copy. A great billboard is visually appealing, attention grabbing, and memorable.

Pick colors that contrast well against each other and try to keep the background of the board simple when possible.

Less is more! Consider using symbols or other visuals to get your message across.

 

 

Call to Action

Consider the call to action on your next billboard. What do you want people to do after they’ve been exposed to your message?

If your website URL is short and memorable, include it on your board. Or, you can direct people to look you up on social media without even asking – simply include the iconic Facebook icon somewhere in your board design.

A healthy mix of traditional + digital marketing tactics will help your campaign thrive.

 

Operating Business in “The New Normal”

As the counties that comprise Northeastern and Central Pennsylvania begin to move from the Red to Yellow and Green reopening phases, businesses are adjusting to “the new normal” in the light of COVID-19.

 

 

Many businesses in Lackawanna County will be able to open their doors for the first time this Friday, June 5. Business leaders have been identifying new ways to move forward while considering things like social distancing, safety precautions for both employees and customers, and other restrictions.

In addition to various health and safety changes, organizations across NEPA should also consider revamping their advertising budgets to fit life in the new normal.

Your customers don’t expect advertising to stop.

Even though many small businesses have been forced to close their doors and shutter their advertising budgets, 96% of consumer survey respondents said that brands should use advertising to address the situation, according to a report from March 2020. Only 2% of respondents thought that brands should pause advertising after the COVID-19 outbreak.

The study found that people want brands to deliver advertising that shows how companies are supporting their staff and customers, providing informative messaging, and providing a sense of continuity and normality.
Customers want to know how your brand is handling the situation as Pennsylvania reopens.

What new procedures do they need to know about before visiting your business? How are you working to ensure a safe business environment? Are you making reasonable adjustments?

Now is the time to evaluate your company’s advertising budget and make ample room for a marketing plan that reaches your customer base.

  • – Let them know what changes they can expect as you prepare to open your doors again.
  • – Launch a campaign to reassure customers about the safety of your products and services.
  • – Look for unique ways to reconnect with your customers and revive demand for your firm’s offerings.

 

Whether your business is about to reopen when Lackawanna County goes “Yellow,” or you’re already operating in a “Green” phase county, you can use your marketing budget to effectively reach your customers by advertising through a mix of digital and traditional marketing tactics.

Online Reviews and Your Small Business

If you own a business, produce a product, or offer a service, chances are you’ve been reviewed online.

Reviews can be an asset. They help build trust between your brand and the public.

When a potential customer reads about the first-hand experiences of others, they gain a better understanding of what your business is all about before they even step foot across your threshold.

But what happens when a negative review from a disgruntled customer gets posted online for the world to see?

Now, more than ever, it’s crucial for small businesses to treat negative online reviews with the same weight as in-store customer complaints.

 

Which review sites do customers turn to first?

 

Before companies can start improving their online reviews, they should pay attention to where reviews are appearing across the internet.

According to Uberall, Google is the go-to site for customers who are searching for reviews and researching local businesses, followed by Yelp and Facebook.

 

Review sites ranked:

1. Google Maps & Reviews
2. Yelp
3. Facebook
4. Better Business Bureau
5. TripAdvisor

Reviews can have a massive impact on how potential customers perceive your business.

In 2019, positive reviews made 91% of surveyed consumers more likely to use a business, while 82% felt put off by negative reviews.

Negative reviews can happen to any business.

 

If you get a negative review, try to follow the same protocol you would if the person were standing in front of you.

Respond quickly, address the customer by name, and use a polite, sincere tone in your reply.

Avoid copying and pasting “cookie cutter” responses.

Most importantly, offer a next step to work toward a solution. This might include posting a customer service phone number or asking the person to direct message you with more information.

93% of consumers say reviews impact their purchasing

91% of adults age 18-34 trust online reviews

89% of consumers read companies’ review responses

 

One way to stay on top of reviews - the good, the bad, and the ugly - is through social listening, which is the practice of observing your online presence by monitoring, tracking, and analyzing conversations about your business.

We previously wrote about why social listening is important and how to start conducting social listening audits for your business.

Be sure to check it out!

Additional sources: Fundera | Bright Local

 

Phil’s 2020 Letter

Have Cord Cutters Killed Regional TV Advertising?

Happy New Year from Condron Media!
January is underway, and we are excited for yet another year serving our partners and clients.
The following is a note from our founder, Phil Condron.

We had a client who was interested in reaching a broad 10 county area in Northeastern PA.

We suggested TV should be a cornerstone of the media plan.

The client responded, “Who watches TV any longer?”

The reference was to the “cord cutters” or “cord stackers.”

A cord cutter is one who no longer subscribes to cable or satellite (linear) TV but watches streaming programming through various devices. Cord stackers are those who retain connected (linear) TV service and also view streaming programs.

The streaming process is known as Over The Top (OTT) and is delivered to viewers through a variety of devices including HDMI sticks (Amazon Fire, Roku, etc.), smart TVs with built-in apps like Netflix & HBO Go, game consoles, internet-enabled smart Blu-ray/DVD players and streaming boxes (Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, etc.).

connect tv

The latest J.D. Power study shows about 60% of streaming customers are cord stackers; 23% are cord shavers (those who still subscribe to TV but have downgraded their service package); 13% are cord cutters (those who have recently canceled TV service); and 4% are cord nevers (those who have never subscribed to pay TV and only subscribe to streaming video services), according to IP Carrier.

So, does that mean advertisers can’t reach the cord cutters?

Not at all.

In fact, video messages can be finely targeted to specific audiences by geography and lifestyle through OTT. So, the targeting of commercials is much more specifically directed in this process than by broadcast or cable TV programming.

And at the end of an OTT TV campaign ad exposure results are available showing where and through what programming the commercials were viewed.

So of course, the answer to our client’s question about current TV viewers is that there are still over 80% of households who view TV as it originates.

That’s almost a half million TV viewers in our market.

OTT is a growing video medium and will affect advertisers with increasing impact in the coming years.

But TV viewing is still alive and well.

-Phil Condron


Note: Phil’s 2020 letter first appeared in our January newsletter.
If you want to subscribe to our mailing list to be the first to read news like this, head here.

What is Social Listening and Why Does it Matter?

Wouldn’t it be great to know what your customers really think about your business?

What are people saying about your company? How about your competitors?

If you’re not performing social listening, you’re missing out on these valuable insights and more.

 

illustration of connections made through social media networking

What is social listening?

Social listening is the practice of observing your online presence by monitoring, tracking, and analyzing conversations about your business or brand on various social platforms.

It’s about gauging the collective online “mood” and analyzing those insights to better integrate your social media marketing strategy.

Social listening is a two-step process:

First, monitor social media for mentions of your brand.
Then, analyze what people are saying to find actionable ways to evolve your social strategy.

 

Why does it matter?

Practicing social listening helps businesses manage their reputation, track growth, identify new opportunities, and develop a strong, loyal fan base.

Social listening also allows you to take small actions, such as replying to customer comments or addressing issues and complaints, or large actions like changing your marketing efforts based on customer feedback.

You may even be able to identify an entirely new customer pool based on the data you collect.

Let’s say, for example, your target audience has always been Demographic A. However, it turns out Demographic B has been tweeting great things about your product!

After monitoring what Demo B has to say, you take action by adding segmented messaging to your next ad campaign that targets Demo B specifically.

Voilà! You’ve just used social listening to acquire an expanse of new customers that were previously off your radar.

 

Tips for getting started

Here are a few tips for businesses that want to start or improve their social listening process:

– Develop a go-to reference list of keywords, topics, hashtags, phrases, or competitor names.

– Periodically monitor your keyword list across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google, and anywhere else people might be talking about you.

– Insights & metrics are offered through many social platforms, so check them often. Facebook’s Insights tab will even recommend up to 5 competitor pages you can track as “Pages to Watch.”

– Set a Google Alert for your business, products, or competitors to easily find blog posts or news coverage about your company.

 

Monitoring the digital sentiment around your brand can help you gain real, valuable insights into what your current and potential customers want from your business.

Put your findings to use. Remember to take actions will allow your company to improve the customer experience, open doors to new opportunities, and continuously shift your strategy to fit your current need.

 

Looking for other tips and tools that can help your small business?
Reach out to us! We’d love to hear from you at hi@condronmedia.com

4 Tips for Marketing Your One-Day Event

One-day events are a great way to promote your business and get people in the door.

An open house, a ribbon cutting ceremony, or a one-day sale might be the catalyst that sparks extra foot traffic, new customers, and increased sales.

#1. Start your messaging early

The key to a higher turnout rate is letting your audience know about your event early and often.

Start displaying your marketing message while there is still plenty of time to build public interest. Two weeks might suffice for smaller events, but consider marketing over a month ahead of time for bigger events.

Your customers should have your messaging in the back of their mind well before the event takes place. Periodic reminders in the weeks and final days leading up to the event will also help with customer recall.

#2. Use social media to promote & share news about the event

Social media is an effective complement to traditional advertising outlets like television commercials, billboards, or print ads to announce the details of your event.

Use it to your advantage! You might consider creating a public Facebook Event with a small budget to “boost” it in order to reach more people.

Or, create shareable graphics to help spread the word.

Your followers will do some of the heavy lifting for you when they repost the images on their own social feed. Encourage users to tag their friends who may also be interested in your event.

#3. Let your customers know what they can expect

Write detailed and attention-getting descriptions about your event to let your customers know exactly what they might get from it.

Special discounts, limited-time product offers, refreshments, or exclusive group tours might be the perfect incentive to get folks in the door, so don’t hold back. Tease the things that attendees would want to know about ahead of time.

#4. Follow up after the event

If your event was a success, let the world know!

Collect contact information from your attendees to build an email list and thank everyone who helped make the day a smash hit.

Share pictures of your happy customers and be sure to invite them all back for your next event.

From grand openings and press tours to college open houses, our team is ready to help market your next event for the ultimate customer experience.

If you’re ready to start using events to build stronger relationships with prospects, contact hi@condronmedia.com. Let's get started planning your next one-day event!

Making It Stick: Frequency in Advertising

This blog post first appeared as our newsletter. Subscribe here to be the first to read future posts like this!

What’s the key to effective frequency?

In advertising, the term “effective frequency” is the number of times a consumer must be exposed to an advertising message before the marketer gets the desired response, whether that be a product purchase, name recognition, or some other result.

Research has proven that messages are more effective and actually perceived as more truthful when they are repeated.

One study concluded that prospects must see an ad 9 times before they become a customer.

Another method claims the magic number is 7.

Some marketers argue that your message should be repeated up to 20 times.

So, how many times must a prospect see your marketing message to transition from a state of total apathy to purchase readiness?


The 1st time people look at an ad, they don’t see it.
The 2nd time, they don’t notice it.
The 3rd time, they are aware that it is there.
The 4th time, they have a fleeting sense that they’ve seen it before.
The 5th time, they actually read the ad.
The 6th time, they thumb their nose at it.
The 7th time, they get a little irritated with it.
The 8th time, they think, “Here’s that confounded ad again.”
The 9th time, they wonder if they’re missing out on something.
The 10th time, they ask their friends or neighbors if they’ve tried it.
The 11th time, they wonder how the company is paying for all these ads.
The 12th time, they start to think that it must be a good product.
The 13th time, they start to feel the product has value.
The 14th time, they start to feel like they’ve wanted a product like this for a long time.
The 15th time, they start to yearn for it because they can’t afford to buy it.
The 16th time, they accept the fact that they will buy it sometime in the future.
The 17th time, they make a commitment to buy the product.
The 18th time, they curse their poverty because they can’t buy this terrific product.
The 19th time, they count their money very carefully.
The 20th time prospects see the ad, they buy what it is offering.

-Thomas Smith, from his 1885 book “Successful Advertising”


In truth, there is no universally correct answer. Frequency breeds familiarity, and familiarity breeds trust. But other factors come into play when determining the right frequency for your message.

How well-known is your organization? Are you trying to change public opinion with your message? What’s your overall goal? What do you hope to accomplish with your message?

Ask yourself these important questions when considering how the frequency of your message will affect the desired outcome of your ad campaign.

Don’t end the campaign too quickly.

It can take months or even years for some messages to connect with consumers. Avoid changing your messaging too soon, even if you’re feeling bored with it.

Repeated exposure to an opinion makes people believe the opinion is more prevalent, even if that opinion is only from a single source. When consumers remember a statement that gets repeated, they are more likely to believe it. Eventually, they begin to think it is the popular opinion.

Let’s say that 9 times is the right frequency for your message. For every 3 times you expose your prospect to your marketing message, it gets missed or ignored 2 of those times. This means your message must touch the consumer a total of 27 times in order to make those 9 impressions stick.


Wondering if your marketing strategy is missing something?
Condron Media can help.
Drop us a line at hi@condronmedia.com.

Want to be Successful in Business? Try This!

Emails, text messages, tweets, group chats, messaging apps… digital communication seems to have removed every barrier that previously limited our connections to our clients, coworkers, and customers. Our networks have substantially expanded and our communication is instant thanks to countless digital messaging tools.

It’s fast, but is it effective?

Has online communication replaced face-to-face human connection? Here are 3 reasons why in-person customer service is not just important, it’s necessary for business.


Less room for error

Interacting with a client or coworker in person means better, more effective communication. You can read each other’s body language, facial expressions, and other non-verbal cues to fully understand the meaning behind the message.

How many times have you sent an email and the receiver only skimmed part of it, or missed your message completely? There’s less room for mixed signals or incorrect interpretation when you can see and hear the other person in the conversation.


Make the sale

People don’t buy what you’re selling, they buy why you’re selling it. Meet with your clients in person to make your pitch and let them see exactly why you’re the best solution to their problems. Being in the same room allows for an authentic, trust-building encounter with a certain personal warmth that a digital message just can’t replicate.

According to Harvard Business Review, face-to-face requests were 34 times more likely to be successful than email requests. Selling yourself, your company, or your cause in an email is far more difficult than having an engaging, in-person conversation. It’s hard to beat good ol’ fashioned face-to-face communication.


Keep customer relationships alive

You can prove to your clients how important they are when you visit them in person. Stop by their office or meet them for lunch and let them know, face-to-face, that their business is important to you.

It’s tempting to type up a text or an email and quickly send it off, but meeting with your clients in person can keep your business relationships happy and healthy.

Don’t get us wrong, our office at Condron Media takes full advantage of digital tools for both internal and external communication.

Who doesn’t appreciate the convenience of mobile communication while you’re on the go?

But when you get to the core of the customer relationship, nothing beats human connection.

Which is best for your business? Facebook Page vs. Website

Have you ever thought, “Why do I need a website when I can use social media to promote my company?” Or perhaps you’ve invested in a website and are left wondering, “Why bother getting my business on Facebook?”

With pros and cons to each platform, which should you use?

hands on a computer keyboard

Having your own website means…

You control every detail.

Your website can be customized in ways that Facebook could never allow. Looking for a pop-up window to collect emails? Why not feature special products on the homepage, or start a blog? The choice is yours and the options are unlimited when it comes to a website that you control.

You have a professional appearance online.

There is nothing more professional than a website that is modern, mobile friendly, and easy to navigate. Your credibility and the digital ‘first impression’ of your company will help you stand out.

Using a Facebook Business Page instead is…

Easy & cost effective.

Facebook profiles and business pages are free to create and use. It’s easy to upload photos, videos, posts, and other information from your phone, tablet, or computer. Facebook also makes it easy to find friends and invite them to “like” your page.

Great for sharing content.

News, updates, and other information can spread like wildfire among your Facebook fans. Your audience on social media is most likely active and engaged with your business already. The platform is designed for sharing.

Facebook


The downside

Compared to Facebook, a website is more complex to design and update, and has costs associated with running it. You’ll have to pay for your domain name and other features if you want a custom design or certain security tools. There are also recurring costs for hosting and maintenance that come with a website.

Your visitors will never get your full brand experience from Facebook alone. You’ll have a hard time reaching people who don’t use social media, because they won’t be able to access your information as easily. You are also competing against other businesses and the algorithm, fighting for space on their newsfeed.

So which is best?

The verdict – a healthy mix of both!

Your organization can thrive in the digital space with a professional, modern website and a Facebook Page that mirrors it. You’ll expand your reach across social media without sacrificing the consumer trust that comes with a professional website.

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