Connect with us

MARKETING

The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 (Plus Free Autoresponders)

Published

on

Nowadays, email marketing is an integral component of any marketing strategy. In fact, 59% of marketers say email is their biggest source of ROI.

When it comes to email marketing, the autoresponder sequence is a commonly used but often under-appreciated part of the process.

Autoresponders are a way to dip your toes into email automation. They’re typically the simplest form of marketing automation to execute when setting up your campaigns — but, when done well, they can be incredibly powerful for bringing in additional customers and revenue.

Here, we’ll cover what autoresponders are, and which autoresponder software solutions you might consider implementing for your own business.

Advertisement

You can choose the number of messages that appear in an autoresponder sequence, and you can choose when they’re delivered. For instance, some autoresponder sequences only have one follow-up message, which is sometimes just a “Thank you” message for subscribing to the email list:

The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

Image Source

In other cases, the autoresponder can be quite robust, and deliver a series of on-boarding emails that escalate in persuasion, sometimes culminating in a sales pitch. This is typical in digital industries, where your email list is the primary sales channel to launch your products.

For example, Ramit Sethi starts his autoresponder sequence with a friendly and informational email message:

1658347878 469 The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

Over the course of several emails, the reader will eventually receive a sales pitch (or a few email sales pitches). This allows the reader to warm up to your brand, and your content. By the time you’re offering your product or service, you should’ve already provided a ton of informational value, like this:

1658347878 283 The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

Sometimes, an autoresponder can act as the actual lead magnet used to get someone to sign up for your list. A good example of this is gated email courses.

CXL, for instance, uses a gated “enterprise conversion optimization” email course to get people to sign up for their list. The deliverable is just a time-based sequence of email lessons — in other words, an autoresponder.

Advertisement
1658347878 65 The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

While the execution can be quite different depending on your business, your industry, and your goals, all autoresponders allow you to automate email sequences based on timing and email sign-up form.

Next, let’s dive into some of the best solutions on the market.

1. HubSpot

HubSpot offers one of the most powerful autoresponder capabilities on the market. Particularly if you’re using other tools in HubSpot’s Marketing Hub, such as our form builder and popup forms, you can easily set up auto-response emails upon form submission.

At a high level, there are two ways to send an email response to contacts who submit a form on your page:

  • Set up a follow-up email in the form options on your HubSpot page
  • Send an automated email through a workflow (Marketing Hub Professional and Enterprise only)

For the former option, it’s quite a simple setup. You simply set up a follow-up email to be delivered upon form submission (full instructions here).

1658347879 231 The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

However, through HubSpot’s workflows you can get quite robust with your targeting and follow-up email assignment. For instance, you can break things down by contact property data you’ve collected, like company size or which service the subscriber is interested in. This allows you to tailor your follow-up emails to ensure they’re more helpful and personalized for the user.

1658347879 861 The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

In addition, you can set a sequence of several autoresponder emails, and can also include behaviorally triggered messages — the options are pretty much endless.

If you’re just using HubSpot’s form builder, you can still easily integrate with another autoresponder solution in this list to get a simple setup working.

2. GetResponse

GetResponse is a full-suite marketing platform that offers tools including landing pages, webinars, and forms, but their most powerful tool is likely their email automation functionality.

Like others in this list, GetResponse can trigger emails based on multiple criteria, such as behavioral triggers, contact property triggers, and time-based triggers (i.e. autoresponders).

Their autoresponder feature is actually quite flexible. You can build email follow-up sequences with the following features:

Advertisement
  • Unlimited messages per day
  • Advanced timing control
  • Simple cycle management
  • Day-of-the-week selection
  • Drag-and-drop message management
  • Quick message edits

Sometimes I’ve found the usability of GetResponse to feel complicated when trying to do advanced automation, but building time-based autoresponders is incredibly simple to accomplish.

It depends on your list size and requisite features, but GetResponse pricing starts around $10 per month (which includes basic autoresponders, and a list size of 1,000).

The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

3. Moosend

Moosend is an email marketing and marketing automation platform, ideal for eCommerce businesses, agencies, publishers, and more. The software offers a variety of lead generation tools like subscription forms and landing pages to expand your mailing lists. 

Through Moosend’s autoresponder feature, you can create and run a welcome series to greet new subscribers and offer exclusive deals. You can also target cart abandoners with abandoned cart sequences to restore your lost revenue.

Moosend’s advanced features include:

  • Powerful segmentation and personalization
  • Scalable automation workflows
  • Easy-to-use campaign editor
  • Weather-based condition filters
  • Action triggered messages

This email platform also has powerful reporting and analytics tools, advanced marketing automation tools, and a variety of automation recipes to help you scale your business.

Moosend offers a free plan that includes autoresponder and automation features. Paid plans start at $9 per month for 500 subscribers and gives you access to the landing page builder and more.

moosend-automation

4. Aweber

Aweber built one of the first well-known autoresponder softwares, and it’s still widely used and loved.

Aweber is a bit more expensive to start out ($19 per month for up to 500 subscribers), but the tool gives you all the critical features you need to implement an impressive autoresponder email system. This includes segmenting, analytics, sign-up forms, templates, and even stock photos.

If you want a straightforward solution for a relatively small email list (anything over 25,000 emails gets quite a bit pricier), Aweber is a good solution.

Advertisement
1658347879 903 The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

5. Klaviyo

Klaviyo is well-known and loved in the e-commerce world, and they have some of the coolest email automation features, particularly for behaviorally triggered emails.

With Klaviyo, you can trigger an autoresponder email sequence for basically any event you can measure (as long as you have the contact’s email address). This opens up all kinds of possibilities, such as abandoned cart emails, thank you emails after a purchase, customer satisfaction surveys after a time window after a purchase, and cross-sell emails given a certain item purchased.

It’s important to note, Klaviyo is built for e-commerce, so it’s relatively stock built for things such as abandoned cart emails. If you’re in e-commerce this is a plus, but in other industries, the feature set can be a bit complicated for what you want to accomplish.

Of course, if you just want to build a simple four-email sequence after an email list sign up, it’s easy enough to do.

Klaviyo offers a free tier (up to 250 email addresses). Once you hit that threshold, it starts at $25 per month and goes up quickly from there (for instance, it’s around $1000/month for 78,000 contacts).

1658347879 666 The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

Image Source

6. Mailchimp

Mailchimp is one of the world’s most popular email marketing tools, and they have a great (albeit simple) autoresponder functionality.

I like two things about Mailchimp:

Advertisement
  1. It’s simple to use.
  2. It’s free to start.

For those two reasons, the barrier to entry is incredibly low. So, for businesses with fewer than one thousand email addresses, it’s a good solution.

However, I’ve found that, as you scale and your automation becomes more complicated, Mailchimp becomes a bit too difficult to manage. It’s hard to know which email is going to whom, and when.

Again, you can begin for free, but after that the cost starts at $20 per month.

1658347879 531 The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

Image Source

7. ConvertKit

ConvertKit is an email marketing platform built for creators (i.e. bloggers, podcasters, designers, etc.). It’s incredibly useful for marketers who focus on inbound marketing.

ConvertKit platform’s is simple and easy to use, although it does include other features to help build your inbound marketing program — including forms, analytics, and their newer automation feature set.

1658347879 888 The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

Image Source

Pricing starts at $29 per month and that tier goes up to 1,000 email subscribers.

8. Autopilot

Autopilot is an email marketing, messaging, and automation platform that has billed itself as the easiest marketing automation platform to use. They have a visual editor that is quite clear and easy to understand (even without being a master automation nerd).

Advertisement

Of course, their platform allows for quite sophisticated messaging and targeting, although you can surely create a simple autoresponder based on a time-sequence as well.

Pricing starts at one dollar per month for up to 500 contacts, and then begins at $25 per month for more than 500 contacts. They include a 30-day free trial, as well.

1658347879 260 The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

9. Constant Contact

Constant Contact is a simple, easy to use, and popular email marketing tool. It includes basic features, such as templates, list building tools, a drag-and-drop editor, and autoresponder sequences.

1658347879 678 The 15 Best Autoresponder Software in 2022 Plus Free Autoresponders

It’s been a few years since I’ve used Constant Contact, but it’s the platform on which I initially learned email marketing. I enjoyed it somewhat, but found it to be frustrating when trying to edit templates, and also for any advanced email targeting. Although it may have changed, I think Constant Contact is best for relatively simple cases.

Their most basic package starts at $20 per month, which goes up to 500 contacts.

10. Omnisend

Omnisend is a popular tool in the e-commerce industry, with thousands of 5-star reviews across the Shopify App store, G2Crowd, and Capterra. They have advanced autoresponder features, allowing you to create interesting marketing automation workflows that include several channels: email, SMS, web push notifications, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Viber, and more.

This allows you not only to set up an autoresponders via email, but via any channel your customer has consented to using with your brand.

Omnisend, like Klaviyo, is geared towards e-commerce. However, if you’re not in the e-commerce industry, many of their e-commerce-friendly features might be lost on you. Regardless, Omnisend is a powerful autoresponder platform that’s definitely worth checking out.

Advertisement

They offer a free plan that has basic email functions and is limited to 15,000 emails per month. Their Standard plan starts at $16 per month and includes automation features.

omnisend-workflowImage Source

The 8 Best Free Autoresponder Software Tools

Some of the tools listed above have free or incredibly cheap plans, such as Klaviyo and Autopilot ($1 per month). However, if you’re looking for a full list of the best free autoresponders that offer incredible value, we’d recommend the following six.

Ultimately, choosing the best autoresponder is difficult. It’s not as straightforward as asking, “How much does this cost?” or “What features does this tool have?”

Instead, it’s also about asking, “Which autoresponder software is best for my particular business?”

This question leads you to reflect on what your current tech setup is (which CRM you use, for instance), and how you plan on growing and using marketing automation in the months and years to come.

For what it’s worth, HubSpot has an affordable introductory plan and we’ve structured our email automation plans to help you grow. So you can expect powerful and simple-to-use features at the startup level, and then as you grow, our autoresponders will still support you, even at the enterprise level.

Advertisement

New Call-to-action

Source link

Keep an eye on what we are doing
Be the first to get latest updates and exclusive content straight to your email inbox.
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Invalid email address

MARKETING

Should Your Brand Shout Its AI and Marketing Plan to the World?

Published

on

Should Your Brand Shout Its AI and Marketing Plan to the World?

To use AI or not to use AI, that is the question.

Let’s hope things work out better for you than they did for Shakespeare’s mad Danish prince with daddy issues.

But let’s add a twist to that existential question.

CMI’s chief strategy officer, Robert Rose, shares what marketers should really contemplate. Watch the video or read on to discover what he says:

Advertisement

Should you not use AI and be proud of not using it? Dove Beauty did that last week.

Should you use it but keep it a secret? Sports Illustrated did that last year.

Should you use AI and be vocal about using it? Agency giant Brandtech Group picked up the all-in vibe.

Should you not use it but tell everybody you are? The new term “AI washing” is hitting everywhere.

What’s the best option? Let’s explore.

Dove tells all it won’t use AI

Last week, Dove, the beauty brand celebrating 20 years of its Campaign for Real Beauty, pledged it would NEVER use AI in visual communication to portray real people.

Advertisement

In the announcement, they said they will create “Real Beauty Prompt Guidelines” that people can use to create images representing all types of physical beauty through popular generative AI programs. The prompt they picked for the launch video? “The most beautiful woman in the world, according to Dove.”

I applaud them for the powerful ad. But I’m perplexed by Dove issuing a statement saying it won’t use AI for images of real beauty and then sharing a branded prompt for doing exactly that. Isn’t it like me saying, “Don’t think of a parrot eating pizza. Don’t think about a parrot eating pizza,” and you can’t help but think about a parrot eating pizza right now?

Brandtech Group says it’s all in on AI

Now, Brandtech Group, a conglomerate ad agency, is going the other way. It’s going all-in on AI and telling everybody.

This week, Ad Age featured a press release — oops, I mean an article (subscription required) — with the details of how Brandtech is leaning into the takeaway from OpenAI’s Sam Altman, who says 95% of marketing work today can be done by AI.

A Brandtech representative talked about how they pitch big brands with two people instead of 20. They boast about how proud they are that its lean 7,000 staffers compete with 100,000-person teams. (To be clear, showing up to a pitch with 20 people has never been a good thing, but I digress.)

Advertisement

OK, that’s a differentiated approach. They’re all in. Ad Age certainly seemed to like it enough to promote it. Oops, I mean report about it.

False claims of using AI and not using AI

Offshoots of the all-in and never-will approaches also exist.

The term “AI washing” is de rigueur to describe companies claiming to use AI for something that really isn’t AI.  The US Securities and Exchange Commission just fined two companies for using misleading statements about their use of AI in their business model. I know one startup technology organization faced so much pressure from their board and investors to “do something with AI” that they put a simple chatbot on their website — a glorified search engine — while they figured out what they wanted to do.

Lastly and perhaps most interestingly, companies have and will use AI for much of what they create but remain quiet about it or desire to keep it a secret. A recent notable example is the deepfake ad of a woman in a car professing the need for people to use a particular body wipe to get rid of body odor. It was purported to be real, but sharp-eyed viewers suspected the fake and called out the company, which then admitted it. Or was that the brand’s intent all along — the AI-use outrage would bring more attention?

To yell or not to yell about your brand’s AI decision

Should a brand yell from a mountaintop that they use AI to differentiate themselves a la Brandtech? Or should a brand yell they’re never going to use AI to differentiate themselves a la Dove? Or should a brand use it and not yell anything? (I think it’s clear that a brand should not use AI and lie and say it is. That’s the worst of all choices.)

I lean far into not-yelling-from-mountaintop camp.

When I see a CEO proudly exclaim that they laid off 90% of their support workforce because of AI, I’m not surprised a little later when the value of their service is reduced, and the business is failing.

I’m not surprised when I hear “AI made us do it” to rationalize the latest big tech company latest rounds of layoffs. Or when a big consulting firm announces it’s going all-in on using AI to replace its creative and strategic resources.

I see all those things as desperate attempts for short-term attention or a distraction from the real challenge. They may get responses like, “Of course, you had to lay all those people off; AI is so disruptive,” or “Amazing. You’re so out in front of the rest of the pack by leveraging AI to create efficiency, let me cover your story.” Perhaps they get this response, “Your company deserves a bump in stock price because you’re already using this fancy new technology.”

Advertisement

But what happens if the AI doesn’t deliver as promoted? What happens the next time you need to lay off people? What happens the next time you need to prove your technologically forward-leaning?

Yelling out that you’re all in on a disruptive innovation, especially one the public doesn’t yet trust a lot is (at best) a business sugar high. That short-term burst of attention may or may not foul your long-term brand value.

Interestingly, the same scenarios can manifest when your brand proclaims loudly it is all out of AI, as Dove did. The sugar high may not last and now Dove has itself into a messaging box. One slip could cause distrust among its customers. And what if AI gets good at demonstrating diversity in beauty?

I tried Dove’s instructions and prompted ChatGPT for a picture of “the most beautiful woman in the world according to the Dove Real Beauty ad.”

It gave me this. Then this. And this. And finally, this.

She’s absolutely beautiful, but she doesn’t capture the many facets of diversity Dove has demonstrated in its Real Beauty campaigns. To be clear, Dove doesn’t have any control over generating the image. Maybe the prompt worked well for Dove, but it didn’t for me. Neither Dove nor you can know how the AI tool will behave.

Advertisement

To use AI or not to use AI?

When brands grab a microphone to answer that question, they work from an existential fear about the disruption’s meaning. They do not exhibit the confidence in their actions to deal with it.

Let’s return to Hamlet’s soliloquy:

Thus conscience doth make cowards of us all;

And thus the native hue of resolution

Is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of thought,

And enterprises of great pith and moment

Advertisement

With this regard their currents turn awry

And lose the name of action.

In other words, Hamlet says everybody is afraid to take real action because they fear the unknown outcome. You could act to mitigate or solve some challenges, but you don’t because you don’t trust yourself.

If I’m a brand marketer for any business (and I am), I’m going to take action on AI for my business. But until I see how I’m going to generate value with AI, I’m going to be circumspect about yelling or proselytizing how my business’ future is better.

Want more content marketing tips, insights, and examples? Subscribe to workday or weekly emails from CMI.

HANDPICKED RELATED CONTENT:

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute

Advertisement



Source link

Keep an eye on what we are doing
Be the first to get latest updates and exclusive content straight to your email inbox.
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Invalid email address
Continue Reading

MARKETING

How to Use AI For a More Effective Social Media Strategy, According to Ross Simmonds

Published

on

How to Use AI For a More Effective Social Media Strategy, According to Ross Simmonds

Welcome to Creator Columns, where we bring expert HubSpot Creator voices to the Blogs that inspire and help you grow better.

It’s the age of AI, and our job as marketers is to keep up.

My team at Foundation Marketing recently conducted an AI Marketing study surveying hundreds of marketers, and more than 84% of all leaders, managers, SEO experts, and specialists confirmed that they used AI in the workplace.

AI in the workplace data graphic, Foundation Labs

If you can overlook the fear-inducing headlines, this technology is making social media marketers more efficient and effective than ever. Translation: AI is good news for social media marketers.

Download Now: The 2024 State of Social Media Trends [Free Report]

In fact, I predict that the marketers not using AI in their workplace will be using it before the end of this year, and that number will move closer and closer to 100%.

Advertisement

Social media and AI are two of the most revolutionizing technologies of the last few decades. Social media has changed the way we live, and AI is changing the way we work.

So, I’m going to condense and share the data, research, tools, and strategies that the Foundation Marketing Team and I have been working on over the last year to help you better wield the collective power of AI and social media.

Let’s jump into it.

What’s the role of AI in social marketing strategy?

In a recent episode of my podcast, Create Like The Greats, we dove into some fascinating findings about the impact of AI on marketers and social media professionals. Take a listen here:

Let’s dive a bit deeper into the benefits of this technology:

Benefits of AI in Social Media Strategy

AI is to social media what a conductor is to an orchestra — it brings everything together with precision and purpose. The applications of AI in a social media strategy are vast, but the virtuosos are few who can wield its potential to its fullest.

Advertisement

AI to Conduct Customer Research

Imagine you’re a modern-day Indiana Jones, not dodging boulders or battling snakes, but rather navigating the vast, wild terrain of consumer preferences, trends, and feedback.

This is where AI thrives.

Using social media data, from posts on X to comments and shares, AI can take this information and turn it into insights surrounding your business and industry. Let’s say for example you’re a business that has 2,000 customer reviews on Google, Yelp, or a software review site like Capterra.

Leveraging AI you can now have all 2,000 of these customer reviews analyzed and summarized into an insightful report in a matter of minutes. You simply need to download all of them into a doc and then upload them to your favorite Generative Pre-trained Transformer (GPT) to get the insights and data you need.

But that’s not all.

You can become a Prompt Engineer and write ChatGPT asking it to help you better understand your audience. For example, if you’re trying to come up with a persona for people who enjoy marathons but also love kombucha you could write a prompt like this to ChatGPT:

Advertisement

ChatGPT prompt example

The response that ChatGPT provided back is quite good:

GPT response example

Below this it went even deeper by including a lot of valuable customer research data:

  • Demographics
  • Psychographics
  • Consumer behaviors
  • Needs and preferences

And best of all…

It also included marketing recommendations.

The power of AI is unbelievable.

Social Media Content Using AI

AI’s helping hand can be unburdening for the creative spirit.

Instead of marketers having to come up with new copy every single month for posts, AI Social Caption generators are making it easier than ever to craft catchy status updates in the matter of seconds.

Advertisement

Tools like HubSpot make it as easy as clicking a button and telling the AI tool what you’re looking to create a post about:

AI social media caption generator step 1

The best part of these AI tools is that they’re not limited to one channel.

Your AI social media content assistant can help you with LinkedIn content, X content, Facebook content, and even the captions that support your post on Instagram.

It can also help you navigate hashtags:

AI social media hashtags generator example, HubSpot

With AI social media tools that generate content ideas or even write posts, it’s not about robots replacing humans. It’s about making sure that the human creators on your team are focused on what really matters — adding that irreplaceable human touch.

Enhanced Personalization

You know that feeling when a brand gets you, like, really gets you?

Advertisement

AI makes that possible through targeted content that’s tailored with a level of personalization you’d think was fortune-telling if the data didn’t paint a starker, more rational picture.

What do I mean?

Brands can engage more quickly with AI than ever before. In the early 2000s, a lot of brands spent millions of dollars to create social media listening rooms where they would hire social media managers to find and engage with any conversation happening online.

Thanks to AI, brands now have the ability to do this at scale with much fewer people all while still delivering quality engagement with the recipient.

Analytics and Insights

Tapping into AI to dissect the data gives you a CSI-like precision to figure out what works, what doesn’t, and what makes your audience tick. It’s the difference between guessing and knowing.

The best part about AI is that it can give you almost any expert at your fingertips.

Advertisement

If you run a report surrounding the results of your social media content strategy directly from a site like LinkedIn, AI can review the top posts you’ve shared and give you clear feedback on what type of content is performing, why you should create more of it, and what days of the week your content is performing best.

This type of insight that would typically take hours to understand.

Now …

Thanks to the power of AI you can upload a spreadsheet filled with rows and columns of data just to be met with a handful of valuable insights a few minutes later.

Improved Customer Service

Want 24/7 support for your customers?

It’s now possible without human touch.

Advertisement

Chatbots powered by AI are taking the lead on direct messaging experiences for brands on Facebook and other Meta properties to offer round-the-clock assistance.

The fact that AI can be trained on past customer queries and data to inform future queries and problems is a powerful development for social media managers.

Advertising on Social Media with AI

The majority of ad networks have used some variation of AI to manage their bidding system for years. Now, thanks to AI and its ability to be incorporated in more tools, brands are now able to use AI to create better and more interesting ad campaigns than ever before.

Brands can use AI to create images using tools like Midjourney and DALL-E in seconds.

Brands can use AI to create better copy for their social media ads.

Brands can use AI tools to support their bidding strategies.

Advertisement

The power of AI and social media is continuing to evolve daily and it’s not exclusively found in the organic side of the coin. Paid media on social media is being shaken up due to AI just the same.

How to Implement AI into Your Social Media Strategy

Ready to hit “Go” on your AI-powered social media revolution?

Don’t just start the engine and hope for the best. Remember the importance of building a strategy first. In this video, you can learn some of the most important factors ranging from (but not limited to) SMART goals and leveraging influencers in your day-to-day work:

The following seven steps are crucial to building a social media strategy:

  1. Identify Your AI and Social Media Goals
  2. Validate Your AI-Related Assumptions
  3. Conduct Persona and Audience Research
  4. Select the Right Social Channels
  5. Identify Key Metrics and KPIs
  6. Choose the Right AI Tools
  7. Evaluate and Refine Your Social Media and AI Strategy

Keep reading, roll up your sleeves, and follow this roadmap:

1. Identify Your AI and Social Media Goals

If you’re just dipping your toes into the AI sea, start by defining clear objectives.

Is it to boost engagement? Streamline your content creation? Or simply understand your audience better? It’s important that you spend time understanding what you want to achieve.

Advertisement

For example, say you’re a content marketing agency like Foundation and you’re trying to increase your presence on LinkedIn. The specificity of this goal will help you understand the initiatives you want to achieve and determine which AI tools could help you make that happen.

Are there AI tools that will help you create content more efficiently? Are there AI tools that will help you optimize LinkedIn Ads? Are there AI tools that can help with content repurposing? All of these things are possible and having a goal clearly identified will help maximize the impact. Learn more in this Foundation Marketing piece on incorporating AI into your content workflow.

Once you have identified your goals, it’s time to get your team on board and assess what tools are available in the market.

Recommended Resources:

2. Validate Your AI-Related Assumptions

Assumptions are dangerous — especially when it comes to implementing new tech.

Don’t assume AI is going to fix all your problems.

Advertisement

Instead, start with small experiments and track their progress carefully.

3. Conduct Persona and Audience Research

Social media isn’t something that you can just jump into.

You need to understand your audience and ideal customers. AI can help with this, but you’ll need to be familiar with best practices. If you need a primer, this will help:

Once you understand the basics, consider ways in which AI can augment your approach.

4. Select the Right Social Channels

Not every social media channel is the same.

It’s important that you understand what channel is right for you and embrace it.

Advertisement

The way you use AI for X is going to be different from the way you use AI for LinkedIn. On X, you might use AI to help you develop a long-form thread that is filled with facts and figures. On LinkedIn however, you might use AI to repurpose a blog post and turn it into a carousel PDF. The content that works on X and that AI can facilitate creating is different from the content that you can create and use on LinkedIn.

The audiences are different.

The content formats are different.

So operate and create a plan accordingly.

Recommended Tools and Resources:

5. Identify Key Metrics and KPIs

What metrics are you trying to influence the most?

Advertisement

Spend time understanding the social media metrics that matter to your business and make sure that they’re prioritized as you think about the ways in which you use AI.

These are a few that matter most:

  • Reach: Post reach signifies the count of unique users who viewed your post. How much of your content truly makes its way to users’ feeds?
  • Clicks: This refers to the number of clicks on your content or account. Monitoring clicks per campaign is crucial for grasping what sparks curiosity or motivates people to make a purchase.
  • Engagement: The total social interactions divided by the number of impressions. This metric reveals how effectively your audience perceives you and their readiness to engage.

Of course, it’s going to depend greatly on your business.

But with this information, you can ensure that your AI social media strategy is rooted in goals.

6. Choose the Right AI Tools

The AI landscape is filled with trash and treasure.

Pick AI tools that are most likely to align with your needs and your level of tech-savviness.

For example, if you’re a blogger creating content about pizza recipes, you can use HubSpot’s AI social caption generator to write the message on your behalf:

Advertisement

AI social media generator example

The benefit of an AI tool like HubSpot and the caption generator is that what at one point took 30-40 minutes to come up with — you can now have it at your fingertips in seconds. The HubSpot AI caption generator is trained on tons of data around social media content and makes it easy for you to get inspiration or final drafts on what can be used to create great content.

Consider your budget, the learning curve, and what kind of support the tool offers.

7. Evaluate and Refine Your Social Media and AI Strategy

AI isn’t a magic wand; it’s a set of complex tools and technology.

You need to be willing to pivot as things come to fruition.

If you notice that a certain activity is falling flat, consider how AI can support that process.

Did you notice that your engagement isn’t where you want it to be? Consider using an AI tool to assist with crafting more engaging social media posts.

Advertisement

Make AI Work for You — Now and in the Future

AI has the power to revolutionize your social media strategy in ways you may have never thought possible. With its ability to conduct customer research, create personalized content, and so much more, thinking about the future of social media is fascinating.

We’re going through one of the most interesting times in history.

Stay equipped to ride the way of AI and ensure that you’re embracing the best practices outlined in this piece to get the most out of the technology.

New call-to-action

Source link

Keep an eye on what we are doing
Be the first to get latest updates and exclusive content straight to your email inbox.
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Invalid email address
Continue Reading

MARKETING

Advertising in local markets: A playbook for success

Published

on

Advertising in local markets: A playbook for success

Many brands, such as those in the home services industry or a local grocery chain, market to specific locations, cities or regions. There are also national brands that want to expand in specific local markets. 

Regardless of the company or purpose, advertising on a local scale has different tactics than on a national scale. Brands need to connect their messaging directly with the specific communities they serve and media to their target demo. Here’s a playbook to help your company succeed when marketing on a local scale.  

1. Understand local vs. national campaigns

Local advertising differs from national campaigns in several ways: 

  • Audience specificity: By zooming in on precise geographic areas, brands can tailor messaging to align with local communities’ customs, preferences and nuances. This precision targeting ensures that your message resonates with the right target audience.
  • Budget friendliness: Local advertising is often more accessible for small businesses. Local campaign costs are lower, enabling brands to invest strategically within targeted locales. This budget-friendly nature does not diminish the need for strategic planning; instead, it emphasizes allocating resources wisely to maximize returns. As a result, testing budgets can be allocated across multiple markets to maximize learnings for further market expansion.
  • Channel selection: Selecting the correct channels is vital for effective local advertising. Local newspapers, radio stations, digital platforms and community events each offer advantages. The key lies in understanding where your target audience spends time and focusing efforts to ensure optimal engagement.
  • Flexibility and agility: Local campaigns can be adjusted more swiftly in response to market feedback or changes, allowing brands to stay relevant and responsive. 

Maintaining brand consistency across local touchpoints reinforces brand identity and builds a strong, recognizable brand across markets. 

2. Leverage customized audience segmentation 

Customized audience segmentation is the process of dividing a market into distinct groups based on specific demographic criteria. This marketing segmentation supports the development of targeted messaging and media plans for local markets. 

Advertisement

For example, a coffee chain might cater to two distinct segments: young professionals and retirees. After identifying these segments, the chain can craft messages, offers and media strategies relating to each group’s preferences and lifestyle.

To reach young professionals in downtown areas, the chain might focus on convenience, quality coffee and a vibrant atmosphere that is conducive to work and socializing. Targeted advertising on Facebook, Instagram or Connected TV, along with digital signage near office complexes, could capture the attention of this demographic, emphasizing quick service and premium blends.

Conversely, for retirees in residential areas, the chain could highlight a cozy ambiance, friendly service and promotions such as senior discounts. Advertisements in local print publications, community newsletters, radio stations and events like senior coffee mornings would foster a sense of community and belonging.

Dig deeper: Niche advertising: 7 actionable tactics for targeted marketing

3. Adapt to local market dynamics

Various factors influence local market dynamics. Brands that navigate changes effectively maintain a strong audience connection and stay ahead in the market. Here’s how consumer sentiment and behavior may evolve within a local market and the corresponding adjustments brands can make. 

  • Cultural shifts, such as changes in demographics or societal norms, can alter consumer preferences within a local community. For example, a neighborhood experiencing gentrification may see demand rise for specific products or services.
    • Respond by updating your messaging to reflect the evolving cultural landscape, ensuring it resonates with the new demographic profile.
  • Economic conditions are crucial. For example, during downturns, consumers often prioritize value and practicality.
    • Highlight affordable options or emphasize the practical benefits of your offerings to ensure messaging aligns with consumers’ financial priorities. The impact is unique to each market and the marketing message must also be dynamic.
  • Seasonal trends impact consumer behavior.
    • Align your promotions and creative content with changing seasons or local events to make your offerings timely and relevant.
  • New competitors. The competitive landscape demands vigilance because new entrants or innovative competitor campaigns can shift consumer preferences.
    • Differentiate by focusing on your unique selling propositions, such as quality, customer service or community involvement, to retain consumer interest and loyalty.

4. Apply data and predictive analytics 

Data and predictive analytics are indispensable tools for successfully reaching local target markets. These technologies provide consumer behavior insights, enabling you to anticipate market trends and adjust strategies proactively. 

  • Price optimization: By analyzing consumer demand, competitor pricing and market conditions, data analytics enables you to set prices that attract customers while ensuring profitability.
  • Competitor analysis: Through analysis, brands can understand their positioning within the local market landscape and identify opportunities and threats. Predictive analytics offer foresight into competitors’ potential moves, allowing you to strategize effectively to maintain a competitive edge.
  • Consumer behavior: Forecasting consumer behavior allows your brand to tailor offerings and marketing messages to meet evolving consumer needs and enhance engagement.
  • Marketing effectiveness: Analytics track the success of advertising campaigns, providing insights into which strategies drive conversions and sales. This feedback loop enables continuous optimization of marketing efforts for maximum impact.
  • Inventory management: In supply chain management, data analytics predict demand fluctuations, ensuring inventory levels align with market needs. This efficiency prevents stockouts or excess inventory, optimizing operational costs and meeting consumer expectations.

Dig deeper: Why you should add predictive modeling to your marketing mix

5. Counter external market influences

Consider a clothing retailer preparing for a spring collection launch. By analyzing historical weather data and using predictive analytics, the brand forecasts an unseasonably cool start to spring. Anticipating this, the retailer adjusts its campaign to highlight transitional pieces suitable for cooler weather, ensuring relevance despite an unexpected chill.

Advertisement

Simultaneously, predictive models signal an upcoming spike in local media advertising rates due to increased market demand. Retailers respond by reallocating a portion of advertising budgets to digital channels, which offer more flexibility and lower costs than traditional media. This shift enables brands to maintain visibility and engagement without exceeding budget, mitigating the impact of external forces on advertising.

6. Build consumer confidence with messaging

Localized messaging and tailored customer service enhance consumer confidence by demonstrating your brand’s understanding of the community. For instance, a grocery store that curates cooking classes featuring local cuisine or sponsors community events shows commitment to local culture and consumer interests. 

Similarly, a bookstore highlighting local authors or topics relevant to the community resonates with local customers. Additionally, providing service that addresses local needs — such as bilingual service and local event support — reinforces the brand’s values and response to the community. 

Through these localized approaches, brands can build trust and loyalty, bridging the gap between corporate presence and local relevance.

7. Dominate with local advertising 

To dominate local markets, brands must:

  • Harness hyper-targeted segmentation and geo-targeted advertising to reach and engage precise audiences.
  • Create localized content that reflects community values, engage in community events, optimize campaigns for mobile and track results.
  • Fine-tune strategies, outperform competitors and foster lasting relationships with customers.

These strategies will enable your message to resonate with local consumers, differentiate you in competitive markets and ensure you become a major player in your specific area. 



Dig deeper: The 5 critical elements for local marketing success

Advertisement

Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily MarTech. Staff authors are listed here.

Source link

Keep an eye on what we are doing
Be the first to get latest updates and exclusive content straight to your email inbox.
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Invalid email address
Continue Reading

Trending

Follow by Email
RSS