9 Marketing Tips for Valentine's Day (Part 1)

Valentine's Day is a little over a week away and customers have already started searching online for gift ideas, as seen on the graph below:

Canada:

US:

 

It is now time for Marketers to roll out their marketing initiatives and capitalize on Valentine's Day’s popularity. If you haven't yet identified the right marketing activities for your business, then we have some recommendations.

This  article is divided into 2 sections, the first one focusing on the advertising activities that will allow brands to raise awareness about their marketing initiatives, campaigns and content created for Valentine’s day, and the second one focusing on activities such as content creation, social media marketing and web analytics. The second article will be published on Monday, February 10th.
 

  1. If you can't compete with big advertisers on search engine for the best keywords, focus on less targeted keywords

    When it comes to Adwords campaigns, bidding on popular keywords can turn out to be quite expensive, especially when competing with big brands. The table below shows the top search engine queries and lets you identify the less popular keywords which will most likely end up being less expensive. These keywords will likely not provide as many clicks, but will be a lot less expensive and competitive.

  2. If you are selling products online, use product listing ads & Google shopping

    Google’s Product Listing Ads, the “unique ad format that allows you to include specific product information like an image, title, price, promotional message, and your store or business name” has proven to quite successful for the Christmas holidays. The image below provides an overview of what the ad format looks like in SERPs:

     

    Product Listing Ads can often be more efficient than simple text ads, as highlighted in Search Engine Land’s article, especially for non-brand queries as seen below:

     

    The graph above highlight a few interesting metrics, such as the fact that PLAs for non-brand queries provide:
    -    241% higher click-through rate (CTR)
    -    18% higher return-on-investment (ROI)
    -    59% higher conversion rate
    PLAs generally only cost 13% more in CPC than text ads, and are even more effective for specific product categories, such as electronics, health & beauty, and home & garden as seen below:


    Check our Christmas Ecommerce Best Practices [Part 1] article for a step by step guide on how to start using the feature.

     

  3. Advertise on the most effective social media

    Facebook

    Facebook’s organic reach has decreased quite importantly over the last few months. Komfo, a social marketing firm, shows in a study on fan penetration conducted between August and November that fan penetration has been decreasing by 42% for over 5,000 Facebook pages analyzed.  

    Facebook however remains quite attractive when it comes to advertisement, especially due to the various targeting options, including age, gender, interest, education, connections and many more. Marketers also have access to several advertising formats, such as the soon-to-be obsolete sponsored stories, promoted posts and page ads. But beyond these various targeting options and ad formats, the one feature we believe could be the most effective is the newly expanded “custom audiences”. Announced on October 15th and released on January 28th, custom audiences’ capabilities (“scale, real identity across devices and accurate targeting”) have been expanded to allow marketers to “deliver targeted ads to people who visited their website or used their mobile app”. The feature allows advertisers to focus on potential customers who have previously shown interest in their products or services but haven’t made a purchase yet for example. Facebook shared the following performance metrics:
    -    Using Custom Audiences from its website, Zaggora, a women’s active wear company, drove 3-6X return on ad spend (ROAS)
    -    Seeking Alpha, a leading financial news application, saw its average cost per install reduced by 28% when targeting mobile app install ads to people who had previously visited the Seeking Alpha website
    -    By reaching people from their mobile app who added to their cart but did not purchase, JackThreads, an online retailer for guys, saw over 8X ROAS. In another campaign, JackThreads achieved over 4X ROAS by targeting and re-engaging purchasers from the last 30 days, but not from the past day.


    Twitter

    Twitter unveiled today its first quarterly results since the company filed its IPO last November,  and surprised analysts by reporting earnings of $0.02 cents (U.S. dollar) a share on a revenue of $242.7 million. The company has seen a growth of 30% of its user base compared to last year, and is now reaching 241 million users.

    Twitter advertising platform has been constantly evolving over the last few months, with the launch of new ad format and targeting options, allowing advertiser to focus their marketing activities on the most qualified audience. We made a quick summary of the various options available

    Different ad format:
    -    Promoted Accounts
    This advertising option lets advertisers promote a particular Twitter account, mostly in order to grow the number of followers. As Twitter has explained, the ad format is “part of Who to Follow, which suggests accounts that people don’t currently follow and may find interesting. Promoted Accounts help introduce an even wider variety of accounts people may enjoy”.
    Below is an example of what Promoted Accounts look like:


    -    Promoted Tweets
    Twitter describes Promoted Tweets as “ordinary Tweets purchased by advertisers who want to reach a wider group of users or to spark engagement from their existing followers. [They] are clearly labeled as Promoted when an advertiser is paying for their placement on Twitter. In every other respect, Promoted Tweets appear just like regular Tweets and can be retweeted, replied to, favorited and more”. Twitter recommends using the ad format in order to:
    -    Drive a particular action via Twitter, such as drive traffic to a website, offer coupons or deals, or promote sales
    -    Drive awareness for your business, by expanding the reach of your content, or connecting you with influencers, or simply by raising awareness about events and product launches.
    Promoted Tweets appear in user news feed as seen below:


    -    Promoted Trends
    Promoted Trends allow users to “see time-, context-, and event-sensitive trends promoted by our advertising partners." These paid Promoted Trends appear at the top of the Trending Topics list on Twitter and are clearly marked as “Promoted”, as seen below:


    Beyond the various ad formats available, Twitter advertising is particularly powerful in terms of targeting. Advertisers are given the ability to target users based on their:
    -    Keywords in timeline
    -    Interest
    -    Geography
    -    Gender
    -    Similarity to existing followers
    -    Devices used to access Twitter
    -    Search result keywords

    Lately, Twitter added the ability to create tailored audiences by leveraging existing CRM contacts, email addresses as well as directly targeting Twitter IDs (usernames or user IDs).

  4. Reengage potential customers who have shown interest in your products or services

    Remarketing refers to the practice of displaying ads to previous visitors of your website as they browse websites that are part of Google Display Network, reaching approximately 92% of U.S. internet users.

    Remarketing offers various options and allows advertisers to reach any past visitors of their websites, however we recommend to focus on past visitors who haven’t yet converted into customers for your Valentine’s campaigns. This offers various benefits, such as not displaying ads to existing customers who might get annoyed by the irrelevant advertisement, and focusing your budget on the potential customers who are the most likely to convert into a customer.
    Advertisers have then the option to optimize their conversion by focusing their targeting on specific interest categories, demographics or keywords.

    If you need assistance setting up your remarketing campaigns, refer to our Christmas ecommerce best practices guide (part3) which covers the several steps required.


    This concludes the first article of our Valentine’s Day series, stay tuned for the second part that will be published on Monday, February 10th. In the meantime, if you haven’t yet identified the best advertising options for your business, get in touch with us through Twitter or our contact page.