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How to keep up with digital innovation

November 17, 2016

by Matt Forman, Traffika

Do you ever get the feeling with almost every passing day there’s a new advancement in digital marketing? Maybe it’s a new platform popping up, new ad formats and functionality plus advancements in the ability to track each and every step of the process. The old metaphor of ‘moving the goalposts’ has seemingly never felt more accurate.

Well, the bad news is you can do absolutely nothing to stop it.

The good news is, if you are willing to stay nimble and roll with the changes, your retail business can potentially grow at an unprecedented rate.

In this blog, Traffika provide their top tips to ensure you’re moving with your retail customers.

Keep Your Team Passionate About Innovation

Ensure your team is passionate about digital and paving the way for your business’s future. Digital is exciting and it should be treated that way. Regular innovation meetings are a great setting for the whole team to get together and share knowledge and passion for different areas. At Traffika, we hold ‘Lunch and Learn’ sessions where members of the team will present to the broader group about the latest and greatest in their area of expertise. Whichever format these meetings take, the aim is to foster passion and to channel that passion and excitement back into your own business.

Do Your Research

Even if you have a passionate team driving digital in your business it has never been more important to do your own research. Most research can break down into two main categories – technology-based and customer-based.

From a technology perspective it’s about reading the latest blogs, watching webinars, asking questions and actually reading those ‘product update’ emails rather than just sending them to your trash. A little bit of research goes a long way and remember, you don’t have to be an expert you just need to know enough to know whether it’s something your business should be leveraging.

Customer-based research can be a little trickier to nail down and it can come in a variety of forms depending on your retail business. Think customer surveys, exit surveys on your website, POS questionnaires and analysing user-data with social platforms and Google Analytics. This type of research can give you a better understanding of how users are finding out about you, what their interests are, what content is engaging to them and why.

Run Test Activity

We’re big advocates for data-driven decisions and if no testing has been carried out then it’s very difficult to know if a particular channel, a particular ad type or a particular ad functionality will or won’t have an effect on your business. That’s where testing comes into play. We recommend allocating a small portion of your marketing budget each month to test campaigns to help understand what does and doesn’t work. Who knows, maybe you will uncover a marketing goldmine that even your competitors haven’t clued on to.

Report, Analyse & Extract Insights

By default most people will go straight to campaign-centric reporting when it comes to analysing the performance of their marketing activity. Metrics like CTR, CPC, Reach, Conversions are readily available and undoubtedly valuable but where additional value lies is within customer-centric reporting. This is where your audience segmentation comes into play, your customer Personas and Journey Maps along with Multi-Channel funnel reports which are all designed to give you an understanding of how different audience groups engage with your brand, products and marketing activity. For more information on customer-centric marketing check out this blog.

While we’re on the analysis of performance, there’s a big difference between findings and insights when it comes to post-campaign reporting. A finding might be, ‘CTR rose by 2.5%’. Whereas an insight might be, ‘CTR rose by 2.5% which was largely driven by the inclusion of video creative. This type of creative should be tested further by expanding the campaign and ensuring the landing page utilises this video creative’. Both are valuable pieces of information but insights provide clear, actionable outcomes based on a campaign finding.

It is important that any post-campaign analysis includes insights, as they not only provide context around performance but also real value in terms of next steps when planning future activity.

There’s no doubt, trying to stay up-to-date with the latest and greatest in the digital world can be overwhelming particularly when you’re also busy running your retail business. Hopefully this blog has given you a few easy tips you can integrate into your own business starting today.

Written by Matt Forman, Traffika. Traffika is a multi-disciplined Digital Business Generation team integrating strategic consulting, digital marketing and leading technologies, providing a holistic solution for growing retail or franchise businesses.

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