2017 has given Chicago marketers and business owners alike plenty to be thankful for. With new tools and solutions designed to meet shifting consumer preferences and trends, marketing can now be more personal and more convenient than ever before—meaning it can be even more effective. In today’s post, we’ve collected five of the best reasons to give thanks this season.
5 Reasons Chicago Marketers and Business Owners Can Give Thanks This Year
1. More Opportunities for Connections.
Between mobile devices and social media, you may think that we should be thankful that consumers have any time for us at all. But the truth is, this increased connectivity provides an increased number of opportunities to reach your audience in a meaningful way.
For example, according to a recent report from BrightLocal, 97% of consumers read local business reviews online throughout 2017, and nearly a third checked every day. Most (85%) continue to trust them as much as a personal recommendation, and they mostly prefer sites like Yelp, Facebook, Google, and the BBB. Keeping tabs matters for more than just monitoring your reputation—nearly a third judge a business in part on whether or not they’ve responded to reviews.
Influencer marketing has also taken a big step forward in 2017. While this can include celebrities, it’s mostly driven by authentic individuals who tend to be internet famous rather than traditionally famous (as with movie stars, etc.). Roughly 70% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase based on social media referrals and recommendations, and women in particular (87%) will turn to their social networks before they make a purchase.
Chicago radio personalities can also be powerful sources for driving consumer trust and traffic to brand sites. The conversation isn’t over just because they get off the air—radio personalities carry their influence over to social media, too.
2. Mass Reach Media Isn’t Going Away.
In the age of hyper-personalized digital advertising, mass reach media (like radio and TV) is still going strong. We’ve talked before about just how extensive and effective radio’s reach is, especially for small businesses, as well as the powerful impact of time spent listening.
Radio can also play an important role in an effective omnichannel marketing strategy. Almost all of Americans (98%) switch between devices throughout the day, so it should be no surprise that businesses that leverage omnichannel campaigns and engagement see 91% greater YOY customer retention over those that don’t. In research including a case study from the IAB, a major retailer saw an 80% higher purchase intent when it included radio in its media mix over digital and TV alone. A similar lift could be seen in brand perception.
3. It’s Easier Than Ever to Prove ROI.
A little under a third of marketers (28%) still say that securing their budget is their top concern, but fortunately, marketers who are calculating their ROI are 1.6x more likely to receive a higher budget. That’s probably because 72% of businesses that calculate the ROI of their campaigns see their marketing strategy and campaigns as effective.
The constant growth of digital and the interconnected nature of omnichannel campaigns means that gathering the data you need to prove ROI is easier than ever. Whether you’re wanting to boost sales or simply improve traffic to your website, there’s a variety of tools you can use to measure shifts in activity or behavior, connect once disparate platforms, and simplify or automate marketing tasks.
4. There’s Always Something New to Use, and to Learn.
Technology, markets, and consumers are constantly evolving, and that means marketers need to regularly adapt to keep up. New and untapped opportunities can present challenges, but there are also plenty of ways to educate yourself and your team.
Has your business considered:
- Social media as a customer service channel, as with Twitter or Facebook Messenger?
- Artificial intelligence applications, such as chatbots?
- Geofencing, which can help trigger push notifications or mobile ads?
- Authenticity and transparency in your content and advertising?
In 2017, the growth of webinars and podcasts aimed at helping marketers improve their strategy and tactics has continued. A great example is our recent Consumer Trends Webinar, where we covered five major trends for Chicago advertisers to tap into for 2018. (Click the button below to watch the recording!)
5. Solutions are at Your Fingertips.
Businesses small and large have a variety of options to choose from that can fit any budget. Some amazing services are even free, but provide amazing benefits. For instance:
- Google My Business provides a business listing (including contact information, hours, and ratings), literally puts your business on the map, and boosts SEO.
- Facebook provides a free format to post content as well as a business listing, boosts SEO, and allows brands to engage followers with a host of powerful tools, like Facebook Live. Plus, its paid advertising can be scaled to fit even a small budget.
- Canva is a free service that helps build engaging and professional looking graphics for a variety of formats utilizing free for commercial use stock photography and fonts. No design training is needed. Premium elements can be purchased individually.
- SurveyMonkey can help you poll your customers and reveals insights and trends.
- Mailchimp is a free yet powerful way to elevate your email marketing campaign. It gives you the tools you need to effectively nurture leads through segmentation, automation, and analytics.
Premium options can further accelerate your marketing efforts, but beyond tools, there’s another critical element that provides a bevy of solutions—marketing partners. Professionals like Hubbard Chicago will put your goals first in order to help you achieve success and growth for your business.
As you can see, there’s a cornucopia of marketing developments and revelations to keep marketing spirits up. Here at Hubbard Chicago, we’re certainly thankful for the reasons we’ve listed above, as well as for our clients and readers, like you.
From all of us to you and your team, thank you, and have a Happy Thanksgiving!