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How to run better social media contests

Recently Unbounce released a study, based on 3 million visitors to 100 websites using their platform between March 15 and April 15th, which promises to improve contest performance and lead conversion.


Key takeaways:

  1. Set an end date to build-in urgency.
  2. Use the word “Giveaway.” “Promotion” sounds like it might or might not be a sale. “Sweepstakes” feels too chancy.
  3. Like Gating Sucks. This trick has been played out.
  4. Put the contest sign up box in the bottom right corner of the page. Add a picture and name brands attached to the giveaway details.
  5. Signal Ease of Entry, e.g. “enter in seconds” versus a big honking “enter” button.
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Study: where consumers go online to make their purchase decisions

A study by GroupMNext and Compete provides interesting insights into the Modern Digital Consumer Journey. In this study, the focus was on consumer electronics.

Highlights include:

  • There are six distinct segments of consumers who exhibit similar behaviors and intent.
  • Amazon is a significant influencer in the journey, representing one-third of all retail site visits.
  • The brand website still plays an important role for 69% of purchasers.
  • 48% percent of purchases studied were heavily influenced by digital media and technology.


For three out of their six consumer profiles, social media plays an important role in the buying decision process:

  • Digitally Driven Segment: They use every digital tool at their disposal. They use social and mobile more than any other segment in the study, value convenience above all else and they do everything in their power to avoid physically going to a store. The Digitally Driven exist in good numbers already, but within five years this will be the dominant segment of consumers.
  • Calculated Shoppers: These shoppers seem to know they are going to make a purchase, but they are deciding which brand to choose. They are similar to the Digitally Driven Segment, but have no urgency to their purchase and they’re willing to take the time to get the best deal.
  • External Shoppers: These are non-mobile shoppers. They want the answers to, “Should I buy?”, “What do I buy?” and “What brand do I buy?”–all at the same time. These shoppers have no urgency to make a purchase and they do their research on desktop and laptop computers.



Whitepaper: 91% of moms use social media regularly

From Scoring Points With Moms - The Secret to Engaging Moms to Try, Buy and Share @ punchtab.com:

Nearly 91% of Moms use social media regularly and spend 2x more time online than the rest of the general population. Moms rely significantly on the online recommendations of other Moms with well over half indicating their purchases were influenced by information on social media sites.

From the accompanying infograph:





Benchmark: best days to post on Facebook, segmented by industry

Buddy Media analysed user engagement from more than 1.800 Facebook Pages from the world's largest brands. Data was collected for two months after all brands were moved tom timeline (April 1 - May 31, 2012).


  • Posts published 8 PM - 7 AM receive 14% higher interaction than posts between 8 AM - 7 PM
  • Brands that post one of two times per day see 19% higher interaction rates
  • Pages that post more than seven times per week see a 25% decrease in interaction rates.
  • Interaction rate for weekend posts is 14,5% higher than weekday posts, yet only 14% of posts are published on weekends.

Here's the breakdown for publishing industry:

Sundays provide a great opportunity for Facebook fans to catch up on the news of the week, and as a result, interaction rates are 5% higher than average on these days. Mondays see interaction rates 7% below average, so it's best to let people get settled into the workweek before posting Facebook content.


Study: Fab.com best example of social commerce

Social commerce firm 8thBridge announced the results of its second annual Social Commerce IQ report, and Fab.com tops its Social Commerce IQ 25 list, which measures the social commerce strategies of retailers.

From INFOGRAPHIC: Facebook Favorite Fab.com Tops 8thBridge Social Commerce IQ 25 List @ allfacebook.com:

A survey of 1,819 U.S. residents found that 70 percent would rather hear about new products from Facebook friends than from brands; 57 percent have asked Facebook friends for advice before purchasing products; 63 percent share products via Facebook (compared with 25 percent on Twitter and 22 percent on Pinterest), and 54 percent said the total number of likes has no effect on the likelihood of them purchasing products.

And what about Pinterest?

If the adoption rate of Pinterest is any indication of consumer driven change, we expect high growth in these social shopping features in 2013.


Nielsen: the hyper-informed consumer uses social media to drive purchase decisions

Nielsen's 2012 Social Media Report provides some insight into what is driving our collective, global obsession with social media.

One of the trends from the report is the hyper-informed consumer.

Social media is transforming the way that consumers across the globe make purchase decisions. They are using social media to learn about other consumers' experiences, find more information about brands, products and services, and to find deals and purchase incentives.



A marketer’s guide to paying attention to the social web

From How to Effectively Listen on the Social Web [Infographic] @ socialnomics.com:

Targeted social listening helps marketers identify new prospects through monitoring the actions and conversations of potential customers. This monitoring also brings an augmented level of understanding of existing customers based on their behaviors and motivations.

2 step guide:

  1. Identify relevant data and behaviors: develop a path to purchase by identifying actions that lead to sales.
  2. Invest in infrastructure: integrate your systems to maximize efficiency.

Lewis' infographic illustrates these 2 steps with the example of marathon runners looking to purchase new shoes.

Which infrastracture investments?

  • Monitoring platforms: identify keywords and influential people to find conversations about your topics.
  • Marketing automation: capture social profile for lead nurturing; send prompts to opt in for your newsletter, send coupons for purchase
  • SMMS (Social Media Management System): schedule and syndicate posts
  • CRM (Customer Relationship Management): record sale, continue to track social, sales and customer service activity.

Altimeter report: The Six Ingredients to Measuring the Revenue Impact of Social Media

Altimeter Group identified six primary ways that organizations currently measure the revenue impact of social media, which should be used as a guideline to determine the most effective measurement mix for your business

  1. Anecdote: Specific examples where social media was known to influence a sale or sales.
  2. Correlation: Comparing two data sets (for example, number of likes vs. revenue) to determine whether there may be a relationship. Note that most correlations are quite simple, although companies such as MarketShare are working on far more advanced social econometric models.
  3. Multivariate Testing: Comparing one group exposed to social media content with another that was exposed to different or no content.
  4. Links and Tagging: Links refer to short links, such as bit.ly, goo.gl, or custom links embedded into content. Tags (and cookies) refer to a piece of code that is embedded into links or URLs for the purpose of conversion attribution.
  5. Integrated: Integrated refers to apps or Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) offerings with integrated analytics, such as those offered by Buddy Media, Wildfire, or Facebook apps for Timeline.
  6. Direct Commerce: Addition of an ecommerce storefront to a social platform such as Facebook; frequently referred to as “fcommerce.”

More where this came from:

The Social Media ROI Cookbook from Altimeter Group Network on SlideShare
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Customer service on social media platforms: a UK benchmark study

A recent study conducted  at New York University for Conversocial, revealed that nearly 90% of consumers, if confronted with unanswered customer complaints on a company’s social media site, would be either somewhat less likely or far less likely to do business with that company in the future.

More in the slide deck below:

Social analytics
View more presentations from Conversocial



Social media KPIs: NPS, ARPU, CPA and the others

Do not arbitrarily jump into the social marketing space without first setting measurable kpis (Key Performance Indicators). Define how you will measure success by selecting one primary and one secondary kpi. According to Jim Sterne in ‘Social Media Metrics’: ‘Social media kpis are, by necessity, a little fuzzier’. But even if you first have to work with a ‘best of breed’ home recipe of mainly free, publicly available and often imperfect sources, it is definitely worth the effort in the long run. Sterne continues: ‘You can’t control the conversation but you can guide the conversation. You can influence the conversation. You can have an impact on the conversation. That’s the whole reason for tracking and measuring it.’

For your reference: Deloitte takes it up a notch by connecting social media efforts to known business KPIs like NPS, PR Value, ARPU, Media Reach/Impact, Media Spend, CPA and Churn. Click to enlarge.

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