Agile Marketing: Singapore needs more of it!

We have moved into the digital age. The time we spend looking at computer and phone screens has exploded while the time we spend on traditional media like magazines, newspapers and TV is dropping steadily.

Yet in most companies, the marketing function isn’t taking full advantage of what can be done using online channels. We have the tools to make marketing much more agile.

Even if you advertise in traditional channels, it has easier to track the ROI of each campaign with tracking phone numbers and landing pages.

Yet most organisations in Singapore are taking advantage of the possibilities. Here are some examples of what Agile Marketing can do:

If you use banner advertising, you have near-instant access to campaign statistics, for example on the click rates of different banner creatives. You should always have 2 creatives competing against each other. Once a clear winner emerges, remove the “loser” and test the winner against a new banner design. If you have a budget for a fixed number of impressions, would you prefer a click-through rate of 0.2% of 0.8%? By constantly putting your creatives and copy to the test, the effectiveness of your campaign can skyrocket. And hardly anyone is doing it in Singapore today.

If you are into event marketing, you can use a tool such as eventnook.com to accept registrations for your events, seminars and workshops. By asking a few targeted questions in the registration form, you will have a good idea of who will be in the room during the event. That means you can tweak your workshop’s content to be much more relevant to the audience. Workshops can be a great way of building business relationships. And they become even more powerful if you’re agile enough to tailor the event to who’s going to be in the room.

Why haven’t we become more agile in our marketing approach?

The old approach is a boxed-in approach. Every function has its tasks and the budget and step-by-step plan. This helps avoid conflicts and lets everyone do their job on their own. It’s comfortable for clients and agencies.

Until… one player in your market shakes things up by forming a true partnership with their marketing agency.

Agile marketing can only be practiced when there is mutual trust between management, marketers and product development. It requires everyone to step out of their comfort zones, and work closely to achieve true excellence.

Would you like to shake up your market with a more agile approach to marketing? In that case, I’d like to get to know you. We may make a good team. You can get in touch with me through the contact page.

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Which Online Marketing Services are the best fit for you?

Is it time to increase sales for your product or service? This is a rhetorical question for most business owners—it’s always time for higher sales numbers when you want to grow and succeed. You can’t get far without reliable marketing services, but the industry of online marketing services in Singapore is overflowing with providers to pick from. Which services do you need? Start by answering this question to help narrow down your options so you can pick the perfect specialist.

Direct Search Engine Marketing (SEM / Google AdWords)

Do you need to control every letter and word of your message? For big brands just breaking into the world of online marketing, search engine marketing may make the most sense. It’s ideal for quickly getting a new website plenty of attention, or testing product options to see which one gets the best response from consumers. It also works instantly. However, it’s also the most expensive option. Can your budget handle the cost in exchange for the immediate boost in attention?

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

How much SEO do you need? This method gives you a chance to naturally climb up the rankings and expand your traffic levels for the long term. Organic search results get more clicks from searchers, leading to a boost in both traffic levels and your credibility. The costs range from the low to the high end depending on the provider. Good SEO creates noticeable changes, but only after a small delay. Can you give your marketing campaigns a little time to work in exchange for longer lasting results?

Social Media Marketing

If your product or service can spark conversations, try leveraging social media to market it. Restaurants, films, and events all do well when promoted this way. Do you need to educate consumers on how to use your products? Social media is a fantastic platform for using instruction as a marketing tool. However, it can’t replace other online marketing efforts entirely. Can you work it into the rest of your advertising efforts? When it fits seamlessly with the rest of the messages about the product or service, it produces a better ROI.

Email Campaigns

Have you ever received a motivating email that prompted a donation or purchase? You could be on the receiving end of that attention with a carefully crafted message sent out to the right audience. Poorly timed, worded, or targeted emails create the opposite response. Are you willing to wait while the agency researches your audience to build a fine-tuned mailing list? Test the waters—and your value proposition—by setting up a SEO or SEM program first to avoid wasting your hard-earned marketing dollars.

Optimization and Analytics

You need analytics no matter what kind of online marketing services you decide work best for you. How can you tell when your marketing efforts are working without in-depth tracking and analysis? Even if you’re already at the top of the ranking results on Google for a dozen keywords, are you happy with the results coming it? If not, optimization is the route to take to change how visitors interact with your site once they arrive on it. Both methods work well when used in conjunction with any of the other marketing methods mentioned here.

Which method is the best fit in your current situation? Get in touch to find out!

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Workshop: Can you do SEO Yourself?

SEO Training bannerYou have a better product than your competitor. But somehow, he always shows up on Google and your website is nowhere to be found.

It’s a frustration for many business owners. What to do? Hire an SEO company?

I know that for that option, many people are concerned about the cost.

There is an alternative: do it yourself.

If you, or an employee, understands the basics of SEO and can spend a few hours a week, that can go a long way to increase your rankings.

Depending on how competitive your market is on Google, it can get you

  • 50% of the way,
  • 80% of the way,
  • or all the way.

Whatever you can do yourself, will help.

How to know what to focus on? I am conducting a 3-hour workshop that covers the basics. Tickets are available for S$ 50.

To learn more or book your seat, have a look here.

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SEO Services In Singapore: What to Consider First

I’ve been there myself. Just completed a website, and thought that now the enquiries from interested customers must start flowing in. Except that they didn’t. No one knew about the site or where to find it. It led me to learn about Search Engine Optimization.

You may want to do the same thing and learn all about SEO yourself. But perhaps you don’t have the time for that. In that case, a good outsource partner can help you build traffic to your site, thus growing your business by extension.

The question is, how to find a good provider of SEO Services? Here are some questions to ask.

1. “Can I afford to outsource SEO?”

Singapore dollars

The one thing that’s guaranteed of SEO services, is that the expense comes before the gain.

SEO services in Singapore are typically charged on a recurring monthly basis and it takes time to see results. It’s common for SEO companies to have a minimum contract period of 6 months, although that is not something I would ever ask of my clients.

So the first question is: can you afford the out-of-pocket expense for the first months when the work is being done, and no results are showing yet?

But the more important question is: is your site suitable for SEO. Will the investment pay itself back over the long run.

I will use myself as an example. The site I started, Yago.sg, is a directory listing site of language schools in Singapore. I charge my customers a monthly fee for premium listings. If the traffic to my site increases by 50%, I can perhaps get 1 or 2 more customers, but there is no direct link between website traffic and revenue.

Years ago, I spoke to a few Singapore-based SEO companies at the time, and they quoted me for their service. But the only way it could make money for me was to change my entire business model. That’s why I learned to do SEO myself instead.

2. “How am I going to earn money out of this?”

Electric bike charging sign

Electric bicycles are popular in the Netherlands and cost between 700 to 2000 euros a piece. But how many will you sell in Singapore if you rank #1 for “electric bicycles”?

If you are a business and use the site to sell your products and services, you can potentially get much more money out of an improved ranking in the search engines. Will it be enough to justify the investment in SEO service fees? That will depend on:

  1. The total market size for your product
  2. Your gross margin
  3. The search volume (% of potential buyers who search online)

You probably have an idea of 1 and 2. For 3, SEO companies should be able to give you an idea. You and the SEO expert both hold some pieces of the puzzle, and you have to fit them together to know the answer.

Some providers of SEO service may be good at ranking websites, but not quite understand the business side from your point of view.

I try to learn as much as possible about the business case for SEO services, and don’t take jobs that don’t give a realistic chance of making money for my clients.

The way I see it, there’s no gain in overstating the benefits: I value long term partnerships with clients. And those only work when both parties are making good money!

Feel free to give me a call if you wonder whether SEO makes sense for you (9008 1423).

3. “What if I can’t afford a long-term SEO engagement?”

Report

A report can come in nice ring bound book. What’s more important is that it contains actionable steps to make your website more visible

One effective way to move forward without engaging long-term SEO services is to have an expert examine your site and write a report for you, detailing any current problems that are holding the site back, ways to overcome them, and opportunities to give your site more exposure.

It’s quite possible to do many SEO tasks yourself, but knowing what has to be done requires a lot of knowledge. Instead of reinventing the wheel, spend a few hundred dollars and you’ll know what needs to be done to move forward.

4. The service provider’s track record.

The track record of professionals you hire should speak for itself. This is tricky, however, because many companies that make use of an SEO provider do not wish to be named. Maybe you wouldn’t be too keen to be named as a customer reference either.

How willing is the SEO company to resolve this difficult situation? As a potential customer, it’s understandable that you like to see some real evidence of their skills. Perhaps they can find a current customer that is willing to talk to them. Perhaps they can discuss some of their own projects with you.

5. “Can we get along?”

You don’t have to become friends with everyone you hire, but a successful partnership with an SEO provider will require some collaboration. In my view, it’s not a matter of setting the expectations once and then handing it off. Can you work with this company? Who will you be working with once the sale is done?

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Is advertising like gambling?

Does your marketing department have the same feel?

Does your marketing department have the same feel?

Advertising is gambling. You bet on a few platforms until your budget is finished.

You hope to leave with more money than you came with.

At least, that’s how many people see it. To me, advertising is science.

We can measure every input and every output.

Input is any kind of advertising. Newspaper, online, TV, you name it.
Output is any kind of result. Purchases. Phone calls. Web forms filled out.

I can track the source of every result. So we know how many customers found you on Google, and how many through e.g. the TV ad.

We can run an experiment. Spend a small budget on different platforms. Then we look at the data.

It will be obvious where to spend the bulk of the marketing money.

Cut waste and get more results out of your marketing budget.

Want to know how? Get in touch!

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