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Shopfloor FOCUS: DIGITAL MARKETING


their social channels, this will raise awareness of your brand and build trust with consumers.


Your online voice


Choose your social channels wisely based on where your market congregates and focus on conversations with your followers and on producing content that educates, entertains and delights rather than on broadcasting a sales or marketing message. You should make sure that you


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mirror your offline PR work with an online campaign that aims to drive more people to search for you or for your specific products; this will help you acquire inbound links to your website in order to boost your organic search performance at the same time. As a channel, email marketing still drives a higher conversion rate than other channels; investing in an email marketing platform that also enables you to set up automated sequences,


o get a retailer’s perspective, ERT speaks to Jemma Parsons, Head of Marketing at consumer electronics and AV retailer, Avensys. She is part of a small team responsible for online marketing activity, and here she offers her tips. “Our digital marketing activity takes a multi-channel approach,” says Ms Parsons. “The main elements are Google Display Network Advertising, email marketing and web display advertising. We also actively use social media, however this should be used as a direct sales tool with caution!”


T


Jemma Parsons, Head of Marketing, Avensys


“W


e like to promote Avensys as a brand and what we stand for – we


try and make a connection with our customers, whether it’s a charity we support, one of our team achieving a qualification or just sharing something that makes us smile. “We try to apply the ‘one in four’ rule – one sales message for every three community or social posts. We are also mindful of using the wrong platform for messages; for example we would promote an industry blog or business article on LinkedIn, but not use it for direct offers. Conversely, we wouldn’t put this kind of thing on Facebook.”


Ms Parsons adds that Avensys started out with just its website and a Facebook account; now, though, the company runs activity across the main social media platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.


“We promote specific campaigns


targeting groups of customers we want to attract, this amounts to less wastage and a more efficient use of budget, plus we importantly exclude people who don’t want to hear from us!” she explains. Everything that Avensys does has a digital aspect to it, whether it’s using social media scheduling platforms like Loomly for efficiency or using creative online tools like Canva for producing assets. “The biggest challenge is working out how we can make the most impact with limited resources,” she notes. “It’s not really an option to ignore digital marketing anymore. While the principles of marketing remain the same, digital marketing allows you to be so much more creative. You can track responses, however, there are still gaps in tracking online to offline sales; for example, a customer visits


such as abandoned basket emails, can keep current customers engaged and help drive repeat purchases. Use social media channels, too, to encourage sign-ups to your email list.


The power of partnerships Consider selling your products on marketplaces like Amazon. According to research, over half of shoppers start by visiting Amazon and 35 per cent of all UK online spend goes through Amazon. By making use of this site (and eBay), you can win consumers who may make repeat purchases directly through your website or your shop. Finally, consider setting up an


affiliate program, then you can get others to market your brand for you; often these affiliates are sites with whom you will be competing with in the organic search results. Just ensure that you lay down very strict guidelines for the behaviour of affiliates.


September 2019 ertonline.co.uk


our website and then comes into the store to complete the purchase.” For those just getting started in this


area, Ms Parsons advises that most manufacturers produce digital assets now, so retailers should use them as much as possible. Other examples include ‘meet the team’ or ‘unboxing’ product video clips on social media… “see this as an extension of your


shop”, she says. “If you’ve advertised in your local


paper, the chances are they have offered you a digital option too. Try an exclusive reader offer and work with the paper’s creative team to create your assets. You can measure response through to your website at the end of the campaign.”


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