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Digital marketing news for small businesses: August roundup

3 minute read

While many of us have been off on our holidays last month, there’s been no let-up in the world of digital marketing. If you’ve been too busy relaxing on a beach to keep up with developments, here are some of the top stories we spotted from August and what they mean for your business.

Invest in content marketing for a direct sales impact

If you were ever in any doubt as to the effectiveness of content marketing, new research published this month by Clutch should be enough to spur you into action. It found that content marketing has a direct impact on sales, saying that “Most people (82%) have purchased a company’s products or services as a result of consuming content marketing”. That’s despite the fact that users are much more aware that it’s marketing they’re being exposed to: “86% are confident in their ability to identify online business content as content marketing”.

What’s more, the survey unearthed the fact that “more than half of people (53%) are more likely to revisit a company’s website and 50% are more likely to research the company’s products.” Importantly, content marketing isn’t just words on a page; it encompasses all manner of online content, from a simple infographic to handy online tools, such as a mortgage calculator, for example. Brush up on this subject by having a read of some of our content marketing posts.

Communicate with customers using WhatsApp

If your business uses WhatsApp to allow customers to chat with you, you might be interested to know that it announced this month that it will be introducing new pay-to-use tools to help you offer an even better service to your customers. You can use WhatsApp to allow your customers to start conversations with you, request information (such as boarding passes) and get real-time support.

WhatsApp says it’s launched these tools because “people have told us that it’s quicker and easier to chat with a business than making a call or sending an e-mail”, but there’s an ulterior motive. BBC News reports that businesses will pay a fee in return for this service – between 0.3p and 7p depending on what country you’re in. Interestingly, you can respond to customers free of charge if you do so within 24 hours, but you’ll pay the fee if you take more than this time to reply – a good incentive, if you needed one, to be prompt in answering your customers. Read more about how you can use WhatsApp for your business here.

Create Facebook video ads from your phone

Last month Facebook rolled out new features to help you create adverts more easily from your mobile phone, and this month the social network has gone a step further by launching even more handy tools, this time part of a ‘Video Creation Kit’ designed to help you create video ads from your phone.

In a blog post, Facebook emphasised the importance of a mobile-first strategy, saying that “mobile-first creative has a 27% higher likelihood of driving brand lift and 23% higher likelihood of driving message association compared to video ads that are not optimized for mobile.” The Video Creation Kit will let you turn videos on your phone into optimised content for Facebook and Instagram news feeds and stories, with four different templates fulfilling different business goals, outlined by Facebook as follows:

  • Promote a product (6 seconds): Focus on a key product to generate interest and sales.
  • Sell multiple products (6 seconds): Show a selection of products, promote a special offer and drive sales.
  • Show product benefits (15 seconds): Highlight product features, use case studies or explain how a product works.
  • Drive product discovery (15 seconds): Bring your brand to life and share what makes your product unique.

You’ll also be able to crop videos and use a simple video creation tool, all optimised for the format you’ll be using them for. The great thing about these tools is that they should make it easier for even the smallest businesses to benefit from the power of video advertising on Facebook, as you won’t need a big budget to create sleek videos. You can read more about these new tools here.

Zoe works as a Content Marketing Executive at the UK Domain. Previously working in advertising and the sporting industry, Zoe has over four years experience in marketing.

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