Part 1: Super Marketing Tips That Will Increase Engagement Across The Board
There are many reasons why we admire super heroes. They stand for truth, justice and the American way. They save good people from the evil villains that want to destroy cities, entire civilizations and have total power. Superheroes, such as members of the Justice League are strong, courageous and most importantly intelligent. They must come up with plans and strategies to destroy the villain’s plans and save innocent people everywhere. They are fearless superheroes by night, but most importantly, they are brilliant super marketers by day.
That’s right! They are real people who have families, love to party, go running, eat at PF Changs or Cheesecake Factory, play basketball, and at the end of the day unwind by watching cheesy rom-com or a good football game.
After chasing them down for an exclusive, most monumental interview, they have agreed to share super marketing tips to help you increase engagement across the board. Take notes and prepare to be astonished.
Superman (Mario Padilla-Graphic Design): Keep Up With The Latest Graphic Design Trends.
We are a visual people. We are attracted to beautiful people, landscapes, designs, furniture, clothes and advertising, just to name a few. For the sake of the interview, I will focus on giving you the greatest tip that will ensure you are on top of the graphic design industry, which covers a lot of ground.
Make sure that you keep up with the latest graphic design trends. I cannot emphasize this enough. Once again…KEEP UP WITH THE LATEST DESIGN TRENDS. This includes:
- Having mind-blowing content that is engaging to your audience. This will ensure that your product or service you provide will be seen in the most positive light. If the content is interesting and relevant, they will want to buy your product/service.
- Beautiful and engaging images. This includes photos, illustrations, graphics & videos. Please find a way to update your website, for the love, there are too many companies that refuse to update their websites. Make that a priority.
- Make sure fonts are updated and a good fit for your message. Please do not use dated ugly fonts. These hurt my x-ray vision. They give me headaches.
Madeleine Morley at The American Institute for Graphic Arts (AIGA) says:
“A trend never simply emerges for a single year and then disappears in a puff of smoke. Instead, an aesthetic becomes popular gradually, even mysteriously, over time before fizzling out slowly without much notice at all.”
The design trends we’ll be covering here didn’t magically materialize in late 2015; trends take time to peak, and you’ve likely seen many of them in one form or another during the last couple years.
But even if you’re not one to follow the trends, as a designer, it’s smart to be aware of the shifts going on in your industry—if only to avoid them before they become overused, or to have the opportunity to twist them into something new and interesting.
That’s all I have time for now, time to go save the world.
Green Lantern (Matt Santos-SEO): Onsite SEO: The Most Effective Solution
I say Onsite SEO!
Properly optimizing your title tags, Meta descriptions, header tags, and onsite content will always have a direct impact on your website’s visibility in the search engine result pages. Beginning the optimization process may seem overwhelming and tedious, but if you take it one page at a time you will be done before you know it.
Begin with the best possible keyword that conveys a strong sense of intent to interact with your brand. From there, make sure that they keyword can be found in all of these areas:
- Title Tag
- Meta Description
- H1 Tag
- Within the Content
- Within your Alt Img Tags
Beyond keyword targeting, you need to always keep user experience at the forefront of everything that you do when it comes to onsite SEO. Never optimize for the robots or search engines, instead optimize your website according to what will appeal the most to your users.
Batman (Darren Faber-Social Media): Use Hashtags
If you’ve used social media for business or for any sort of marketing purposes, you probably know that using hashtags can be extremely beneficial for increasing reach and engagement on your posts. No, hashtags are not just a trendy way to add a little extra humor to your captions, or just something the kids are saying these days. They have actual value when used properly.
So just a few quick notes on the proper use of hashtags:
- Hashtags are only effective on Twitter and Instagram. LinkedIn actually doesn’t support them anymore, and the use of hashtags on Facebook actually decreases engagement.
- According to LinchpinSEO, Tweets with hashtags receive 2x more engagement than those without hashtags.
The effect is even more dramatic on Instagram.
- Don’t use too many hashtags on Twitter. Any more than two can actually result in a decrease in engagement.
- Make your hashtags as targeted as possible. Almost every industry has at least one hashtag that is used regularly to centralize the conversation on your topics. Using those is much more effective for reaching your target audience than you #tbt posts.
- Be careful when using trending hashtags. I would suggest getting several sets of eyes on any post using a trending hashtag before actually posting. There have been many examples of catastrophic results when trending hashtags are used improperly. That being said, there have also been some major wins.
Black Canary (Amanda Heir-Content Creation): Creative Blog Titles
They say you only have a few seconds to make a good first impression and that is just as true for blog titles. Your blog titles are often the very first interaction that your buyers have with your brand, so it’s your chance to make an impression on the people who might one day become your customers. With over 2 million blog posts being published every day, you need to do something to make your blog stand out, and the title is the best place to start. In fact, the right title can increase traffic to your blog by up to 500%! But creating an engaging title isn’t as easy as it sounds. There are a few tools and tactics that I like to use when creating blog titles, especially when I suffer from the dreaded affliction known as writer’s block:
- Long Lists: It sounds cliche, but list posts get great engagement. They tell your readers what to expect and, especially if you can create a long list, they often provide tips, tactics, and valuable information to your readers.
- How To’s: How to posts are great. Everyone likes to learn how to do new things, and if they can learn from an expert, even better.
- Feature a Dramatic Statistic: If you can feature a dramatic statistic (when I saw this blog title How We Grew Our Blog’s Conversion by 750% in 3 Months and you can bet that I clicked on it), especially if it is a stat that challenges someone’s pride (think “90% of people fail this test. Can you pass?”) clicks to you blogs will shoot up.
- Make a Sensational Claim: Making a sensational claim or promise (the 10 second trick that will triple your social media following). It is dramatic and will help increase your traffic. But, make sure you can actually follow through.
Creating engaging blog titles is probably one of the most difficult, but most effective ways to increase engagement on your site, so keep at it. And if you really get stuck, I like to use the Hubspot Blog Title Generator or the Portent Topic Generator to help get the creative juices flowing.
Wonder Woman (Amy LaVange-Content Strategy): Plan Your Attack.
So you have a marketing campaign. A big, full-funnel marketing campaign, that utilizes a jam-packed arsenal. But even the cleverest of weapons (indestructible bracelets and marketing automation, anyone?) are only as powerful as the strategized attack behind them.
Like any well fought battle, the secret is to start out knowing what you’re going for. Your attacks need to be directed toward the same villain (or audience), with a similar message, all throughout the funnel. Otherwise, your opponent (er, prospect) will slip into the shadows while you’re busy batting at a passerby.
Here’s an example (forgive me as I slip in and out of this metaphor I have going on.)
The first attack (let’s say a contextually appropriate blog post) throws you into the fight.. From there, you can bust out everything in your arsenal–as long as you’re using each of them a weapon to win the same battle.
The ad image should appeal to the same group of prospects.
The ad copy should touch on a related pain point.
Landing pages, remarketing, emails… on and on, down the funnel.
Use every tool you have, but know why you’re using it. Know who you’re attacking. Know what the goal is. You don’t want to start out attacking Lex Luther and end up simply giving Cat Woman a scratch on the cheek.
Cyborg (David Pearson-Campaign Management): Data
Data. Data. Data. The most important tool in your belt is data. By testing different audiences against each other you’ll be able to understand who your audience actually is, not who you think it may be. Once you understand who your audience is, then you’ll be able to create a proper context for your ads.
Just think about it. Ads that are referencing your specific audience’s exact pain points are guaranteed to do better than some generic ad that’s hitting a million different people. Because, really, that data that you’re obsessing over is actually people. People who have different pain points, different products, and different needs.
Flash (Landon Kingston-Demand Generation): Nurturing Customers and Prospects
Creating opportunities to generate leads is a crucial aspect of marketing. The communication with your contacts is something you should strategize. Do emails even work anymore? They answer is yes, but don’t just send out emails just to get something out there. What is the purpose? What type of emails do you want to send?
Do you just want to send out an email blast? What type of email blast is it?
- Sending a piece of collateral to download
- Sending an invite to an event
- Monthly eNewsletter
Is the blast going to trigger someone into a nurture campaign? How many follow up emails do you want in the nurture? 3,4,5? What do you want to send in those emails? It can be anything from another piece of collateral to download, a blog post or anything you want.
As you can see, there is a lot that goes into planning the communication you have with your customers and prospects. Engaging your contacts with good content will help keep your contacts engaged with your brand.
Green Arrow (Tim Mathews-Sales): Can You Feel Their Pain?
Do you address your prospect’s pain with a bandaid or a body cast? One of the biggest mistakes salespeople make is the assumption that their product or service needs to be explained in granular detail to every lead. They assume that clients purchase the “value”, “quality”, or “services” provided. The truth is that your prospects will engage with your company if you first take the time to understand their pain points, and then provide specific solutions that take away that pain. If you want to close more deals, learn to ask better questions.
Patrick Hansen, the author of “The DNA Selling Method” said it best. He says, “You should never give a presentation until you get a presentation”. You should ask questions that allow your prospect the opportunity to tell you where they hurt. Have you ever been to the doctor for a sore throat and the second he walks in the room he says, “We will have to put that arm in a cast”? No. The first thing he does is find out why you are there to see him. He asks you questions like, “What brings you in today?”, or “How long has your throat hurt?”. Then, based on your answers, he prescribes a specific treatment. He never starts telling you all the solutions, features, and benefits for every treatment he has available. There is no point. He only needs to fix your throat.
Your clients are no different than you are. They only want to know how you are going to fix their specific problems.
Start by asking where it hurts. Find out what they have tried so far to fix the problem. If you listen with the intent to truly understand their pain, you should be able to probe a little further to ascertain how serious their problem is or how afraid they are that it is going to get worse. Once you know these things you can speak specifically to your solution and how it will take away their pain.
Are You Ready to Be a Super Marketer?
Time to implement these tips from our superheroes and watch your overall customer engagement shoot through the roof. Members of the Justice League have seen many of their client’s ratings and profits escalate dramatically as apply these tips and many others time and time again. Tune in next month for more Super Marketing Tips as members of the Avengers share their marketing expertise.
Header Illustration: Mario Padilla
Profile Comics: DC Comics