Mar 25
Reading Time: 3 minutes

  Boost Your Customer Engagement with Emoji's - BMT Micro

Whether you like them or not, the use of emoji’s in online marketing is becoming a growing trend. Emoji’s are responsible for increasing brand exposure, user engagement, and ad performance. There are 6 billion of them used on mobile applications around the world every day and according to published reports, up to 92% of internet users use emojis. The Oxford English dictionary even named the joy emoji the 2015 Word of the Year. Within the past year alone, emoji usage has more than tripled, and more companies are starting to integrate them into their marketing strategy.

Emoji’s may seem like an unconventional way to draw attention to you brand, but research has proven it works. Emoji’s provide a way for online businesses to connect with consumers on an emotional level, and we know that people process visuals 60,000 times faster than plain text. By using emojis in your marketing communications, they can help make your message more concise since they sum up a multitude of words in a single image. Nowadays there is an emoji for practically anything, so there’s sure to be an appropriate one for your business depending on your target audience’s needs.

Email Marketing
Emoji’s can liven up content with a bit of humor or they can simply be used to stand out in a cluttered inbox. Inboxes are increasingly full, which makes it an ongoing effort for emails to stand out. A study by Search Engine Watch found that emoji’s used in email headlines increased open rate by 30%. An emoji can also save space. You can say a lot with an emoji and it only takes up the space of one character.

Social Media
Unlike email marketing, social media provides a few more options to use emoji’s. In fact, over half of the text on Instagram is done in emoji. In a study done by Wordstream, a tweet with an emoji had 25.4% higher engagement and a 22.2% lower cost per engagement against a tweet without. In Q4 2014, 28% of Facebook’s top brand pages used emoji in their posts. By Q4 2015, that had jumped to 40%. What’s more, emojis have impacted social so much that Facebook even added a set of six additional emoji-like “reactions” to join the thumbs-up ‘like’ button this year.

images

Create Your Own
If you can’t find an emoji to fit your business needs, you can also make your own. Marketing campaigns that involve custom-made emojis have become increasingly popular over the past year. For example, when the Pope came to town, Twitter released a special Pope emoji. In the cluttered emoji landscape, custom emojis can help a brand’s marketing stand out and generate buzz. It is also a fun way to increase your brand’s exposure but there is a downside. The lifespan of custom emojis appears to be relatively short past the initial curiosity of their release. There is also the problem of custom emoji’s starting to feel too much like ads.

The great thing about emoji’s is that they can make your message more eye-catching and instantly understandable. But that’s not to say they should replace text completely! Keep in mind, what works well for one brand may not be a good tactic for your business. Choose an emoji strategy based on your product and audience, and from there, experiment with a few different variations.

If you are a vendor with BMT Micro and you have questions or need help with your social media marketing, we may be able to help. A Marketing Analysis and other Marketing services are currently available for our vendors. If you would like to learn more about the services we offer, please contact our Marketing Specialist via email at leah@bmtmicro.com for more information.

Mar 18
Reading Time: 1 minutes

   Dark Social - Are You Afraid of the Dark - BMT Micro

If your business is unfamiliar with the term dark social, you should take some time to get acquainted. Dark social is the traffic and conversions that happen on your website when consumers conduct conversations in private messaging apps or share links away from major social platforms such as email or SMS. In theory, your analytics platform should tell you where a referral came from when a consumer clicks a link to your site from an open social platform such as Facebook. However, links shared through private messaging apps or email lack referral tags, so when a consumer clicks on the link their visit will show up in your analytics as ‘direct’ traffic. But, dark social is not really direct traffic which means there is a large portion of referral traffic that is difficult to track accurately. Although it is harder to work with, your business should not ignore dark social.

For a better understanding of dark social, we have created an infographic covering the different channels dark social and how to measure it.

  dark social

Dark social is extremely valuable because it can significantly improve the ROI of your social media and digital marketing investments. This marketing opportunity is an accurate data source and potentially one of the most lucrative marketing opportunities available today so don’t let your business be afraid of the dark!

Mar 11
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 2016 Holiday Calendar - It's Time To Start Preparation Now - BMT Micro

Although it may feel entirely too early to be talking about the holiday season, anyone will tell you that it’s impossible to be too prepared for the busiest and most profitable time of the year. With the day-to-day hustle of running an online business it can be easy to forget approaching holidays. But the last quarter of the year sees the most increase in number of orders and average order size. In 2015 we saw a record rise in online shopping and this trend is predicted to increase by up to 45 percent this year. It is also expected that over 192 million shoppers will choose to shop from the comfort of their living room. So, how can your business use this trend to your advantage? Prepare for the holiday season well in advance.

So far in 2016, the following holidays & important dates have passed:

January

  • Jan 1: New Year’s Day
  • Jan 6: Epiphany
  • Jan 7: Orthodox Christmas Day
  • Jan 10: World Laughter Day
  • Jan 14: Orthodox New Year
  • Jan 18: Martin Luther King Jr. Day

February

  • Feb 1: National Freedom Day
  • Feb 2: Groundhog Day
  • Feb 8: Chinese New Year
  • Feb 9: Mardi Gras
  • Feb 9: Shrove Tuesday
  • Feb 10: Ash Wednesday
  • Feb 14: Valentines Day
  • Feb 15: Presidents’ Day, Family Day
  • Spring Cleaning

March

  • Mar 4: Employee Appreciation Day
  • Mar 6: Mother’s Day (UK)
  • Mar 8: International Womens Day

How many of these did your business plan for and participate in? If the answer is none, don’t worry you are not alone. But the only way your online business can fix this is by planning ahead. The last quarter of the year is packed with holidays and the first step to prepare for this is to look at and familiarize yourself with the upcoming ones. After, you will need to decide which holidays are the most important and make the most sense for your business and customers.

Upcoming Holidays & Important Dates:

2016 Upcoming Holidays - BMT Micro

This calendar should help your business stay organized while planning your 2016 holiday sales. It is also important to mention that for global businesses, there may be even more holidays than the ones we have listed that your business should take into account. Planning ahead is always better sooner rather than later and it will ensure that your business has all the materials ready to make the most of the holiday rush. Plus, having everything in place and ready to go will reduce your stress and make the season go more smoothly.

BMT Micro is here to help as well. Our system can be used to setup up many different discount schemes for your holiday promotions and to offer your customers the convenience of using multiple payment options. It is also important to note that more data breaches occur during the holidays than any other time of the year. With BMT Micro, you can keep your customers sensitive information safe with our secure servers (which host all shopping carts using the highest encryption standards available) and state-of-the-art fraud detection system. Our highly trained customer service team also handles all questions your customers may have related to the payment and ordering process. We offer marketing services as well, so please feel free to contact us to learn more about all of the services we offer and how we can help better prepare your business for the 2016 holiday season.

Mar 4
Reading Time: 2 minutes

   Spring Cleaning Tips For Online Businesses - BMT Micro

Spring is coming! At least, that’s what Punxsutawney Phil says. The groundhog did not see his shadow this year, so an early spring is on the way. After months of cold temperatures and gray skies, consumers are ready to shake off the winter blues. Now that the holiday season is over with, it is the perfect time to make some changes and do some spring cleaning for your online business. Spring cleaning can bring great benefits to any business but the hardest part is getting started. To help with this, we’ve made a list of our favorite spring cleaning tips for online businesses. We hope with these suggestions your business will be ready to take off with spring sales.

  • Check for 404 errors and broken links on your site, social media, blog, etc.
  • Make sure Google Analytics is installed on your site and tracking properly.
  • Review your SEO and make sure it is clean and polished. Also, take a look at how your site shows up in search engines and rework your meta data (if necessary).
  • Make sure everything on your site is current. Check out things like your copyright date, images, recent news, contact information, and so on.
  • Get some fresh eyes to read through your site content to find any grammar or punctuation issues.
  • Try a flash sale or giveaway on new items to help create interest around upcoming products.
  • Review the profiles and accounts you follow on your social platforms and unfollow inactive and/or irrelevant accounts.
  • Freshen up your social accounts with a new profile picture and/or cover photo.
  • Check all of the information on your social accounts to make sure it does not need updating.
  • Think strategically about the social accounts you have and need for your business. If there is one that you do not utilize as much or you no longer see a need for, delete it.
  • Clean up your email lists and remove any contacts who have never engaged with you, or have not done so in the last three months.

These are only a few of the many items your business can spring clean, but they are a good way to warm up and get started. A thorough spring cleaning is vital and by spending just a little time each day tackling these tips, your business will have a cleaner website, lists, and profiles. Not only does spring cleaning help your business see what your site is lacking and needs to be updated, it also is an opportunity to fully embrace the spring cleaning motto: “out with the old, and in with the new.”