07 October 2021
The average consumer is hit with thousands of advertisements each day. In fact, Forbes estimates that, on the low end, Americans see 4,000 ads every day. How can your restaurant stand out amid all that noise? Radio may be the answer. In this article we discuss why radio may be the right platform for you and how to make a radio ad for your restaurant. Why Radio? Radio may be the perfect platform to advertise your restaurant. Before we talk about how to make a radio ad, let’s talk about why we love this platform. Here are three reasons: There’s a wide reach. While some platforms have relatively narrow audiences, radio is quite versatile. Whether your target audience is business professionals or families, men or women, young parents or senior citizens you can reach them on radio. According to Pew Research, in 2020, 83% of Americans over the age of 11 listened to radio every week. There tends to be a high return on investment. Radio isn’t a new platform, and the return on investment is well documented. In terms of ROI, it’s actually a pretty hard platform to beat. In fact, Nielsen found that “radio ads returned on average more than $6 for every $1 of investment.” There are options. When we say “radio,” what comes to mind? Probably listening to tunes in your car, right? And while many people are consuming music, news, and entertainment that way, that isn’t the only option. With the rise of high-speed Internet, many people are listening to audio on their computer through apps like Spotify and Pandora. They’re also consuming podcasts. All of which can be great additional options for you to advertise, especially if your restaurant does business with delivery services like GrubHub or DoorDash. Pew Research reports that as of 2021, 41% of Americans over 11 have listened to a podcast in the last month … and the number of listeners is growing year-over-year. Ready to take advantage of all that radio has to offer? Great, let’s talk about how to make a radio ad for your restaurant … one that won’t have people flipping to the next station. How to Make a Radio Ad Follow these 5 tips to make a radio ad that’ll cut through the noise and have people lining up outside your restaurant. Know your target audience. Okay, this tip applies to all forms of advertising, so maybe just write it down somewhere in permanent marker. Understanding who you want to reach, who is making the decision to come to your restaurant, is vital to: Writing your radio ad script. Your audience will help you determine which benefits to emphasize and what language to use. Choosing which stations to run on. Picking the best time slots for your ad. Tip: If your restaurant uses online ordering or online reservations, you may be able to harvest important demographic information from your website using a tool such as Google Analytics. Understand the problem. Part of knowing your target audience is understanding what their pain points are. Knowing the problem will allow you to offer up a solution in your radio ad. Really dig in here when thinking about how to make a radio ad for your restaurant. Yes, hunger is a pain point, but how does your restaurant uniquely solve that? If hunger is the sole problem, it’s hard to stand out, right? Instead think about how your audience’s hunger is unique. For example, perhaps they need a quick meal that can fit in their lunch hour or gluten-free or vegetarian-friendly options. And maybe hunger isn’t the biggest pain point your audience is facing. If your target audience is families with young children, a bigger concern might be reconnecting around the dinner table, even if that table is at your restaurant instead of at home, or how to get everyone fed on a budget. Start with your CTA. When thinking about how to make a radio ad, keep in mind that your entire ad will only be 30 seconds long. That means you have approximately 75 words to sell your restaurant. One thing your radio ad must include is a call to action. What do you want the listener to do? Start there and build the rest of your script around that. Tip: The CTA might be “visit our restaurant,” but it should probably be something more specific. “Visit our restaurant” doesn’t create a sense of urgency. It also may not address your audience’s pain point. Keep it simple. Again, you only have 30 seconds and your audience may be engaged in another activity, such as driving, when they hear your radio ad. That means it’s imperative that you keep the message simple and clear. Avoid trying to cram too much information into your ad, and instead focus on one CTA. Invoke other senses, and make their mouths water. Remember, we’re talking about how to make a radio ad for restaurants. While food can make sounds, that probably isn’t the first sense you think of using when it comes to experiencing food, right? Take some time in your radio ad to play on those other senses like taste, smell, and sight. For example, use adjectives to paint a picture for your audience. If your audience’s biggest problem is that they want healthy food options, you may use adjectives like fresh, organic, local, hearty, and nourishing to describe your offerings. How to make a radio ad for a restaurant is both an art and a science. At St. Gregory, we have decades of experience strategizing, writing, and placing radio ads for restaurants, and we’d love to help you with your next advertising campaign. Contact us today for a free consultation.
21 September 2021
Good marketing agencies use data to inform their strategy. And at St. Gregory, we pride ourselves on being more than good. Data and quantitative experience are the backbone of the decisions we make on behalf of our clients. However, what happens when there are questions surrounding that data’s integrity? This is exactly what marketing agencies and media buyers around the country were faced with this summer…. In mid-August, Nielsen, the go-to authority on TV ratings, announced a suspension of it’s industry accreditation. Nielsen sought this suspension voluntarily, but only after the Video Advertising Bureau (VAB) accused Nielsen of data integrity issues in their own petition for suspension. The VAB had previously pushed for Nielsen to undergo an independent third-party audit after becoming suspicious about reported viewership data in the wake of the pandemic. Specifically, the VAB believed that Nielsen provided inaccurate depictions of TV usage decline during 2020. They claimed that the data couldn’t be accurate due to the fact that there was an approximately year-long suspension of field servicing to households that are part of Nielsen’s panels. In fact, the VAB believed the inaccurate reporting impacted nearly 10,000 homes (source). This would mean Nielsen was reporting TV viewership drop-off and thus discouraging media buyers from placing television ad buys. Less viewers would have media buyers looking to other outlets for clients that would put them in front of more eyeballs. It should be noted that the VAB has a vested interest in seeing higher TV viewership and ratings reported as they are a trade group which promotes broadcast and cable networks and would like to sell advertising for those networks. These two organizations, the VAB and Nielsen, have clashed before. However, in this case, Nielsen did admit to underreporting and is currently undergoing an audit process to fix these issues and restore data confidence moving forward. How is St. Gregory responding? We’re currently not making any drastic changes, although we are closely monitoring the situation. In addition to following the story closely, our media team has attended a WebEx on how Nielsen ratings can be used going forward. At St. Gregory, we believe that continuing education is important in all areas from digital marketing to traditional media to ensure we can provide our clients with the most up-to-date information and tactics. This is just one more example of that. We also feel that it’s important for our clients to note the following: The data integrity issues were at the national level. Those approximately 10,000 impacted homes were not local to the Greater Cincinnati area but rather were spread out across the United States. This means that not all markets saw the same downswing. We try to focus on data that is most applicable to our clients; in words, if a client is running a Cincinnati DMA targeted commercial, we’re going to be focused on local data. The rating data Nielsen provides is a guideline. While we definitely reference it, we do not solely rely on it. We use many different data points in order to put together plans and strategies for our clients. And once a media buy is placed, we constantly monitor the stations and the rating points delivered to ensure our clients are getting what they ordered. By using multiple sources of information as well as our decades of experience, we’re able to spot data anomalies and potential issues and work around them. While the underreporting by Nielsen is a big deal, it doesn’t have to be earth shattering for your media plan. If you’re working with an experienced agency that has multiple data sources to tap into, they will be able to navigate these tumultuous waters. Rest assured, at St. Gregory, we are paying close attention to the circumstances surrounding Nielsen and as new developments occur, we will review and act accordingly to ensure our clients marketing budgets are being utilized effectively and efficiently. If you want those same assurances, we should talk. Schedule a consult with us today.
21 August 2021
For small business owners, every dollar counts. Combine that with the fact that there are about a million different ways to advertise, and the concept of marketing may feel utterly overwhelming. Take a deep breath. While a small business owner may never have the same resources and budget as larger competitors, all is not lost. Here are four tips to help you get the most out of your small business marketing efforts. Know Your Audience Knowing who uses your products or services is critical to any company’s marketing efforts. Period. However, while large businesses can afford to squander money, many small businesses cannot, making this step even more important. The process of gathering information about your target audience is often referred to as “building a buyer persona.” During this process you’re trying to gather as much information as possible about the person who would purchase your products or services from concrete facts like their age to more abstract ideas like their pain points. Building a persona will help you understand not only where your target customers spend their time, for example, Facebook versus Tik Tok, but also what your target customers need to know before making a decision. In other words, the buyer persona will help you understand what small business marketing tactics are likely to be the most effective. In order to start collecting information use: Google Analytics (or another website analytics service). Customer surveys. Customer interviews. Sales data. Industry data. Sometimes, as the business owner, it can be difficult to be objective when building a buyer persona. For example, if you’re a big fan of Twitter it may be tempting to lean on that platform even if that isn’t where your target audience is. An agency that specializes in small- to medium-sized businesses, like St. Gregory, can assist you with building an accurate buyer persona based on facts. Turn to Digital Once you understand who your target audience is, it’s time to start reaching them. When it comes to cost-effective tactics for small business marketing, digital channels are a great option. Digital marketing encompasses a wide variety of tactics including: Organic social media marketing. Search engine optimization (SEO). Search engine marketing (SEM). Display ads. Paid social media marketing. Email marketing. Blogging. There are many benefits to using digital channels for small business marketing including: It’s easier to track and measure ROI. Using tools like Google Analytics and UTM parameters, which are free, you can measure the impact of your digital marketing efforts. You can target your buyer persona. Many digital channels allow you to get very granular with targeting including targeting by location, gender, and age. You can start with a small budget, and you can pause or stop your efforts easily and quickly. The ability to reach just about any buyer persona. There are very few buyer personas that are not reachable using digital marketing. Even if your target audience is an older demographic, they’re online. According to Pew Research Center, as of 2021, 73% of adults between the ages of 50 and 64 are on social media. Pull Double Duty Another way to maximize your small business marketing efforts is to lean on tactics that can serve double-duty. In other words, focus on tactics that give you twice the bang for your buck. Here are two examples of marketing tactics that can help a small business in multiple ways: Ask customers for feedback in the form of online reviews. There are many benefits to asking current customers to review your business. For example, your customers will feel that you care about the experience they had. This may increase the likelihood that they use your company in the future. In addition, you may uncover valuable information that you can use to improve your products or services as well as the overall customer experience. However, there are also marketing benefits to seeking customer reviews. First, there’s a high likelihood that your buyer persona does research online, including reading reviews, before making a purchase. In fact, according to a GE Capital Retail Bank study “When it comes to making big purchases, 81 percent of consumers go online before heading out to a store ….” Having online reviews can help get your target audience to trust you. If these online reviews are done through Google, they can also help with your local SEO efforts. Google specifically says “Google review count and review score factor into local search ranking. More reviews and positive ratings can improve your business’ local ranking.” As you can see, asking customers for online reviews can be very advantageous without costing you much at all, if anything. Learn more: Concerned you might receive a negative review? If that happens, here are tips on when and how to respond to negative reviews. Invest in video. Another marketing tactic that can be very powerful is using videos. Unfortunately, many small businesses are intimidated by the idea of creating videos. They think it is too complicated and too expensive. However, with the help of a small business marketing agency, like St. Gregory, which has full service in-house video production capabilities, you can produce videos that pull double-duty. For example, you could use videos on YouTube, other social media platforms, and your website. Not sold on video? Here are a few stats that might sway you: YouTube is the second most popular search engine after Google. According to Forbes, 90% of consumers use video to make purchasing decisions. A Sprout Social article states that videos generate 1200% more social media shares than posts with just images and text. Plus, visitors spend 88% more time on a website that has video, according to Sprout Social. Keeping people on your site longer can be beneficial for your SEO efforts. Read more about bounce rate and why it matters here. As you can see, videos can help you on social media and with search engines as well as to push your buyer persona further into the sales funnel. That’s a lot from just one piece of creative. Learn more: Here are some things to keep in mind if you want to make a video or YouTube ad people will actually watch. You’re Not Alone The last tip to maximize your small business marketing efforts is to realize you aren’t alone. If you started a small business, you probably have a lot to do and adding another thing to your list, especially if that thing doesn’t play to your strengths, may simply be too much. Good news—you don’t have to do it all. Small business marketing doesn’t have to be your responsibility. While it is important that you’re involved in the process you don’t have to do it all. There are small business marketing agencies, like St. Gregory that are ready, willing, and excited to work with you. When you opt for a small business marketing agency you don’t have to worry about getting lost in the shuffle. At national marketing agencies you may be a very small fish in a very large pond, but at medium and small business marketing agencies you’ll get the attention you deserve. Learn more: If you are considering hiring a marketing agency, here are six questions to ask. In addition, small business marketing agencies have experience maximizing your marketing dollars. At St. Gregory, we have experience working with businesses with a wide variety of budgets. We know how to efficiently use your marketing dollars. If you’re ready to maximize your small business marketing efforts, contact St. Gregory today.
11 August 2021
Today, in marketing, a lack of data usually isn’t the problem. Quite the opposite. Generally there is too much—from reach to viewable impressions, CTR (click-through-rate) to video view rate, cost per click to cost per acquisition. How do you cut through the noise to what really matters? Well, for starters, it’s important to know what metrics are available and to know what they actually mean. One question we get a lot is “what is bounce rate?” (Quickly followed up by “what is a good bounce rate?”) This question probably stems from the fact that bounce rate is on the home page of Universal Google Analytics. Google is giving it a prominent position, so it must be important, right? So to help you start weeding through all those metrics, lets talk about bounce rate—what it is, whether it matters, and how to improve it. What is bounce rate? A bounce, as defined by Google, is “a single-page session on your site.” In other words, it’s when someone comes to your website, sees only that one initial landing page, and then leaves the site. For example, let’s say you’re running a Google Ads campaign to get individuals to open a new business checking account at your financial institution. John sees your ad and clicks on it. He’s directed to a special landing page on your site. John lands on that page and eventually clicks the back button. It does not matter how long John is on that landing page—10 seconds or 10 minutes—or how much of the landing page he sees. In other words, whether he immediately clicks the back button or reads all the way to the bottom and then clicks the back button, it’s a bounce. Bounce rate is the percentage of times a bounce occurs on your website. You can calculate the bounce rate by dividing all the single-page sessions by all sessions. So if your checking account landing page gets 100 sessions and 10 of those sessions don’t visit any other pages, your bounce rate would be 10%. Pro tip: A session is a group of user interactions with your website that take place within a given time frame. So when someone visits a website they are starting a session and during that time period they may view multiple pages, click on things, or even make a purchase. All of those actions occur during that one session and are grouped together. This Google Analytics help article provides more information. What is a good bounce rate? It depends on your website and your business. (Yes, we know, that’s a frustrating non-answer.) Unfortunately, there is no absolute number you can use to judge your website’s bounce rate. A high bounce rate may indicate something is wrong with the website. Especially if there is a high bounce rate on a specific page while the rest of the site has a low bounce rate. Going back to our example with John, maybe that landing page does not match the ad he clicked. John clicked an ad for a special new business checking account but the landing page is talking about new business loans. Whoa! He’s in the wrong place … so he leaves. However, remember, bounce rate is defined as a single-page session. So while we know John only went to one page, what if he took a valuable action while he was on that one page? Let’s say your landing page is spot on, but the only way someone can open a new business checking account is to call the bank, make an appointment and then visit a location in person. John sees the phone number right there on the landing page, so he calls to make an appointment and then leaves the website. Google Analytics doesn’t know he made that call. Once he leaves the landing page, it’s a bounce … even though you just got an appointment from your Google Ads campaign. In this instance, you don’t really care that John bounced, right? Another example of an inflated bounce rate is if you have a login option on your site that directs to a different domain. Let’s say your financial institution has an online banking portal for customers. If someone comes to the homepage, immediately logs in, and is redirected to that online banking portal, they just bounced. This scenario could obviously lead to a lot of bounces every day. The type of business you have and how your website is set up will factor heavily into what you should be looking for in terms of bounce rate. We recommend that you evaluate bounce rate in conjunction with other metrics (such as conversions). In addition, pay attention to outliers; if there’s one page with a much higher bounce rate than the rest of the site dig in and try to figure out why. Pro tip: If there are important actions someone can take on your website, such as watching a video, you can set up event tracking. By default, when an event occurs, Google counts that as an interaction and even if the visitor only hits that one page, he or she will not be counted as a bounce. However, if you want to track events but not impact your bounce rate you can tell Google to see it as a non-interaction event. That means even when the event fires the individual must hit more than one page or it is still a bounce. Does bounce rate matter? So, wait, there’s no good answer to what is a good bounce rate? Does this mean bounce rate doesn’t matter? Umm, not quite. As mentioned above, bounce rate can indicate that there is a problem with your website as a whole or a specific page. Maybe something is taking too long to load or doesn’t match the user’s expectations. Another factor to consider when thinking about bounce rate is SEO (search engine optimization). A lot of people will tell you that bounce rate is part of Google’s algorithm when deciding who shows up where in the search results. For a variety of reasons, this does not technically appear to be true. What Google does appear to be considering for SERP (search engine results page) rankings is what’s known as “pogo-sticking.” As we’ve already talked about, a high bounce rate is not inherently an indicator of a bad website. Individuals could be converting on that landing page or moving to a different domain (like the online banking portal). What is an indication of a bad website is when someone leaves the site unsatisfied, goes back to the search results, and clicks on another organic result right away. Google actually has a patent called “search pogosticking benchmarks,” and according to that patent, the search engine is tracking the number of times search results are selected before a user doesn’t come back to the SERP as well has how many additional results are clicked after your website was selected. If Google concludes your website is causing pogo-sticking, you may be in trouble from an organic rankings standpoint. While high bounce doesn’t necessarily equal pogo-sticking, it could, so be sure to evaluate pages with high bounce rates to ensure you’re providing an optimal user experience. How do I improve my bounce rate? How to improve bounce rate will depend on what’s causing the high bounce rate in the first place. This is where an analytics deep dive is needed. You’ll want to look for answers to questions such as: What is the speed of the site or the page in question? A slow load time could be causing people to flee. Is the bounce rate higher on mobile devices? If so, evaluate the site or page from a mobile device to look for issues. Is the conversion rate on the page in question also high? If so, the bounce rate may not be anything to worry about. If you need help understanding your bounce rate or any of the metrics related to your site, St. Gregory can help. Our Google Analytics certified digital marketing specialists would love to help you implement a tracking plan that provides the exact data you need. Contact us today for a consultation.
07 July 2021
Author: Steve Bleh
Too many food service operators—particularly in casual restaurant formats, and specifically, the more premium casual restaurant concepts—misjudge the multiplier effect of a strong weekday lunch business. Sure, you can simplify the menu and turn over the tables a lot (sometimes) faster, but some operators still argue that even so, there’s not enough return to invest more when the tickets and the margins are often much less. So why should you invest in lunchtime traffic, even if ticket sizes are better later in the day? That reason alone is actually exactly why—because lunchtime guests are also more likely to visit your restaurant in the evening and on weekend … when they’ll spend even more. For guests, lunch is often about convenience. (For operators offering quality food service, that’s too often.) But consider this: When hanging out socially with family or friends, we all want a dining option that’s reliable and predictable. In short: familiar. Lunch guests also are more likely to bring new guests with them. The destination for a midday meal at work is usually the product of a negotiation, meaning it’s likely there’s one or more people in a party for whom your restaurant wasn’t previously in consideration. And because work lunches are social occasions, they’re a popular topic of conversation around the office, with coworkers asking where others are going, where they went, what they ordered and if they’d recommend it. Serving up a pleasant lunch experience also lets you leverage the social psychology of your guests to build your brand: People like to be the first in their network to discover a new experience, whether it’s a restaurant, a band or a joke. Being in the conversation is another step toward more effective restaurant marketing. So, how do you build the lunch business at your restaurant? Here a few common approaches we’ve worked with clients to implement over the years, with QSRs and casual and premium casual restaurants alike. Restaurant loyalty programs The mere mention of loyalty programs—whether you call them rewards clubs or SUBscriptions or what have you—make some operators’ eyes squint. Here’s a secret: Many restaurant guests feel the same way. But you can do better. First, don’t make your guests carry around a ragged old card when they’ve already got a perfectly good mobile device in their pockets. Go digital. Make it shareable, so they can brag to their friends that they’re eating for free (and WHERE). Most important, don’t make it an annuity program. If the reward is the incentive, make it attainable, even if it’s less than a complimentary meal. Offer discounts on sides or select beverages at a lower transaction count to keep guests engaged. Pass-along promotions You want them to talk about their positive lunch experience when they get back to the office, right? Give them something to share, like a certificate for an upgrade on a meal for two that’s valid within the next week or so. Give them something to offer their coworkers to come along next time. Bounce-back promotions Casual formats that serve alcohol have even more options. For example, while lunch for most people is a timed exercise, after-work drinks and appetizers usually are not. An incentive to return the same day with a party of four or more means an additional table, probably bigger ticket, and definitely more margin. It likely will take some experimentation, but a discount on the second appetizer is a great place to start the bidding. Online ordering Lunch guests during the workday are on a timer. They have a finite amount of time to get to your restaurant, appreciate the superior experience you deliver, run that errand and get back to their desks before the bell rings. You can put their mind at ease by taking their orders—and their payment—in advance digitally. By scheduling their meal time instead of their seating time, you not only save their time waiting for food prep, you save your time waiting for that table to turn over. Limited delivery Consider a delivery model that suits your specific menu and margins. Delivery has become an expectation in many segments, particularly following the madness of 2020, but there are strategies for restaurant delivery that can keep the hands of the Silicon Valley app bros out of your pocket. Set minimum order sizes and delivery areas to mimic catering offers, for example. Also consider limiting your delivery menu to those items you’re confident will travel well. Sampling Contact businesses in your area to offer sampler trays of your best catering menu items. Just do your research first. The person whose lunch you really want to pay for is the one who makes the catering decisions, not the guy who answers the phone. Depending on the particular company, that’s usually someone with a title like office manager, business manager or the admin to the CEO. Call first and schedule a day and time that’s best for them. Business card drawings Hey, I never said these would all be new, but you can make more of collecting business cards than a one-time giveaway. Rewarding your lucky winners with the social status of bringing two or three of their friends to your restaurant at lunch is obvious. But also track where those cards are coming from, month over month. If you see a rising number of visits from employees at a certain company, make sure you’re letting the person in charge of their catering orders or their business lunch scheduling know that your menu is the house favorite. The food service industry faces challenges today that most of us have never experienced. Rather than see that as a negative, view it as the best time get creative. Try different combinations and variations of these approaches. Soon, you’ll find the idea that works best not just for your guests, but for your business. Now, go finish your shift.
21 June 2021
There’s no shortage of discussion these days about digital vs. traditional advertising, typically along the lines of extolling the former and downplaying the later. What you might not hear enough of, though, is the increasing need to consider digital with traditional when it comes to your next marketing campaign. The massive shift toward online and
07 May 2021
Author: Daniel Lally
For a restaurant or home services company, name recognition and trust are core assets—and any lack of that positive awareness can be a big hurdle to your marketing success. Your investment in traditional and digital advertising and social media engagement are just table stakes. But there’s another way to help people become familiar with your brand and garner trust and good will: community engagement that reaches your neighbors and customers where they live. And before you ask: It’s not cynical to engage in charitable giving or volunteerism with the goal of improving your marketing. It’s good business, and it’s good for your neighbors. When you dedicate your business and your brand to a cause—whether by sponsoring a community event, supporting the volunteer efforts of your employees, providing in-kind donations of food or professional services, or any other goodwill efforts—you actually are making your community a better place to live and work. The only real difference between community engagement for marketing and pure altruism is that, as a business, it’s not unseemly to take credit. Meanwhile, the positive reputation you already have among customers and neighbors in the community serves to multiply your business’s contribution and lend credibility to the cause, multiplying the effect. In addition to helping make the community a better place to live and work, you’re introducing potential customers to your brand in the best way possible: by making a strongly positive association with something they care about, in their community, and in an authentic and long-lasting way. Your company’s name will be connected to more than just the event or the issue it addresses, too. Community engagement for marketing allows you to make a deeper emotional connection, associating your brand with how people feel when they get involved in their own community. And that feeling is amplified every time your charitable partner tweets or posts or sends out an email blast. A few tips on choosing a charity: Steer clear of anything controversial or divisive. Generalities are your friends here. For example, there may be a dispute in the community about whether a disc golf course or a bocci court is a more pressing local need, but it’s likely that most agree that parks and green spaces are a good thing in general. Seek relationships with organizations that complement your brand message. For example, a restaurant specializing in fresh or healthy menu items may find a natural fit with a wellness cause or event. A home services company that caters to families might choose to work with a local children’s hospital. The point is, you still can invest in a cause that’s close to your heart—and feel great about the trust and name recognition you’re banking for your business. Another advantage: here often are operational benefits as well. Don’t underestimate the morale boost your own team will feel as a result of being part of something bigger than themselves.
02 July 2020
Author: Natalie Shawver
Purpose: it’s a big deal. To individuals, to businesses, to brands, to life. If you look at life under a microscope lately, you’ll see some pretty intense things. The proverbial petri dish is full—overflowing, some might say. In between the COVID-19 global crisis, we’re grappling with longstanding issues of racism and inequality that have led to protests and social media blackouts. The volatility is increasing … and the microorganisms we’re watching are multiplying. With those facts in play, your brand’s purpose is an even bigger deal. No longer can it remain exactly the same—businesses must shift to be more inclusive of current events, and leadership at all levels has to answer some tough questions. Consumers aren’t satisfied with simply reading a mission statement on your website. They want to know the actions you’re taking to support social justice-oriented movements and why they should remain faithful to you. And, most important, they want it to be crystal clear. There’s no time for questions. Don’t dance a jig. Either you take a stand on important issues … or you’ll be left in the dust. The days of neutrality are over. However, if there’s one thing all business leaders can agree on, it’s that the recent pandemic has united us in one way that most of us have not seen before. Our livelihood purpose is common; therefore, our business purpose must rise to meet it. Even before COVID-19, this paradigm of purpose as a driving factor for profit has been in the spotlight. In 2019, more than 180 chief executives from the Business Roundtable shared a provocative statement that the purpose of a corporation should be to help other stakeholders such as employees, the environment and ethical suppliers. The board was so serious that it decided to create a special committee to advance racial equality and justice solutions this month. Still not convinced that a defined purpose is imperative to profitability? A recent global study reveals that when consumers think a brand has a strong purpose, they are: 4 times more likely to purchase from the company 6 times more likely to protect the company in the event of a misstep or public criticism 5 times more likely to champion the company and recommend it to friends and family 1 times more likely to trust the company But it isn’t just any consumer. If your brand isn’t going after millennials, you may want to abandon your marketing strategy altogether—76% of them want to see CEOs actively using their platform to address important social issues. If you aren’t delivering on this promise, you’re leaving money on the table (aka consumers won’t be donning masks in your stores or calling you for your service). Forty-three percent of consumers walk away from a brand when left disappointed by that brand’s words or actions on a social issue. Let that one sink in. So how do you shift or redefine your purpose in a time of uncertainty? Maybe you scratch it altogether and start anew. First things first: stay relevant as the world changes. Purchase patterns have drastically changed from basic-needs-only toward ethically-purchased-only. What is your company doing to be present and not stuck in the past? Second, take thoughtful action. Whether you speak out on social media about specific issues in the news or make philanthropic donations to in-need organizations, you’ve got to do something. After all, there’s nothing more powerful than purpose. This post is part of a series on marketing during and after the pandemic. To read the others, follow this link.
14 May 2020
Help; the clicks my vendor is showing don’t match what I’m seeing in Google Analytics! Unfortunately, this is a very common problem. In fact, we’d say it’s the norm! Usually, the number of clicks a vendor is reporting is significantly higher than what you’re seeing in Google Analytics, which can be quite distressing. However, there are a myriad of potential causes behind this discrepancy, and while more than one factor may be at play, let’s take a look at one of the most common issues. Clicks Are Not the Same as Users If you’re running display or pre-roll video ads, the vendor is probably delivering those ads over an ad server or ad exchange. The vendor is most likely tracking clicks, which are calculated based on server logs. On the other hand, Google is tracking “users.” A user is not necessarily the same thing as a click. A user is a unique person that has come to your website. To put it more accurately, it is a unique device and/or browser. Let’s dig a little deeper. Scenario 1: Let’s say John is surfing the web using his iPhone and a Safari browser. He clicks your display ad three times. Your vendor would count this as three clicks, but Google Analytics would only count this as one user. That’s because the first time John clicked your ad and Google Analytics fired, he was “cookied.” A code snippet was appended to him so that Google could recognize him. Now, any time John visits your website on his iPhone in Safari, he’ll just be counted as one user unless he clears his cache or the cookie expires. Scenario 2: Let’s say John is surfing the web using his iPhone and a Safari browser. He clicks your ad two times. Later that night, John is on his laptop in a Chrome browser and clicks your ad once. Your vendor would count this as three clicks, but Google Analytics would count this as two users. Once on the iPhone in Safari (even though he clicked the ad twice) and once on the laptop in Chrome. Unless John changes his device and/or browser or clears his cache he’ll continue to be counted as one user in Google Analytics … but your vendor will count a new click each time he clicks on your ad. Conflating clicks with users is the quintessential apples/oranges issue in third-party reporting. But, it’s far from the only possible cause of reporting discrepancies. In an upcoming post, I’ll discuss some other common causes and how to use your web data for the best results possible. If there’s a particular issue your brand is wrestling with, give us a call or join the conversation on LinkedIn or Facebook. This post is part of a series on digital marketing analytics. To read the others, follow this link.