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Anshuman Agrahari

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Anshuman is working with the content team of UpGrad. He's passionate about improving Indian education system; before UpGrad he worked to build an ed-tech startup and was responsible for all marketing efforts. He's highly opinionated in current affairs and loves reading, writing & running.

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Top 32 Tools Every Successful Digital Marketer Uses
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In the last few years, the digital marketing has grown leaps and bounds. Whether it’s a large established company, small and medium enterprises or a budding startup, digital marketing has become a core entity of marketing policy. The digital world is massive, complex and volatile. It is evolving every day and every organisation is mandated to have its footprints in the digital world. If you haven’t yet taken your first step, it’s time you pull your socks up. For you to strategise and implement the different digital marketing initiatives, there are hundreds of digital marketing tools, software and applications available in the digital market. If you are a beginner in digital marketing marketing, and want to gain expertise, check out our digital marketing courses from top universities.  Best Digital Marketing Courses Online Advanced Certificate in Brand Communication Management - MICA Advanced Certificate in Digital Marketing and Communication - MICA Performance Marketing Bootcamp - Google Ads from upGrad To Explore all our courses, visit our page below. Digital Marketing Courses To ease your work, scale up the productivity and these digital marketing tools are very simple to use and execute. With the vast impact and growth of digital marketing, I have collated a comprehensive list of the best and trending digital marketing tools and its usage for various digital marketing activities. Here’s an infographic, scroll along to know the details: Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) Whether you are starting a new venture, or you have a great idea which needs to be told to the world, marketing is inevitable. The product and the marketing must work together right from the ideation, to requirements to launching. The product must be in sync with the needs of the audience. Most organisations ignore the process of SEO and its implications while the marketing of the product. In-demand Digital Marketing Skills Advertising Courses Influencer Marketing Courses SEO Courses Performance Marketing Courses SEM Courses Email Marketing Courses Content Marketing Courses Social Media Marketing Courses Marketing Analytics Courses Web Analytics Courses Display Advertising Courses Affiliate Marketing Courses SEO as a digital marketing initiative can help to establish the credibility of the organisation, reach the right and a wider target audience and building the traffic and brand awareness among the consumers. While all this might be a complex set of activities, there are some great SEO tools which could streamline this process. Here are some of the best digital marketing tools for SEO described briefly: Learn digital marketing courses online from the World’s top Universities. Earn Masters, Executive PGP, or Advanced Certificate Programs to fast-track your career. #1 Moz Local Listing Score If you are a startup having a presence in fewer locations, you might have to work online and create an urgency for the customer on a daily basis. Moz Local Listing Score helps to check the online listings of the product effortlessly. With this application, brands can infuse trust in the customers and in search engines. One can also know about when and what actions need to be taken to drive more traffic. The data reflected in the tool comprises of information from 15 different platforms such as Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc. The data also reflect which platform works and which doesn’t with an instant fix of the bugs (if any). Digital Marketing Free courses to Learn Influencer marketing free course Introduction to advertising free course Influencer marketing right free course SEO basics free course SEM basics free course Email marketing free course Social media marketing introduction free course How to leverage user generated content free course Content marketing free course Fundamentals of marketing free course Brand marketing masterclass free course #2 Keywordtool.io Keywords are the lifeline for any marketing campaign to be effective. This tool helps to gather information and evaluate the useful and relevant keywords for the specific target audience. One gets almost more than 500+ long-tail keyword ideas for a single entry of the word. The keywords are organised alphabetically and help to choose as per the needs of the user. This is a completely free tool with extremely reliable results. #3 Google Page Speed Insights The page load duration is a critical factor influencing conversion rates and bounce rates of a website and business. The Google Page Speed Insight online application offers a real-time evaluation of the loading of the webpage speed. One can check the speed as well as the usability of the website on multiple platforms such as a computer, mobile, tablet, laptop, etc. The tool also offers suggestions and ideas to improve the speed of the web page. #4 Browseo Get an idea about the look and functioning of the website from the perspective of a search engine. It explains how crawler technology or the search spiders derives data from the website and presents it to the consumers. The application helps to understand which web pages of the site are relevant for the SEO. By just entering URL of the website, one can get a detailed analysis and a picture of the different elements of the website, in specific for every web page. #5 Google Analytics If you haven’t used Google Analytics for gaining knowledge of your target audience, it is better you start right away. Google analytics is a powerful tool comprised of hundreds of metrics. Depending on the marketing campaign, the user can use the set appropriate goal for the campaign. It gives end-to-end complete statistics about the customers, business and product Lifecycle along with search insights. Besides this, Google Analytics gives information about the specific keywords used by the target audience for a specific page. #6 QuickSprout An exceptional site, which gives a complete analysis of the website. It gives data about the websites which are like your website and gives tips and suggestions to beat them in the search engine ranking. A free tool that offers a comprehensive scrutiny of the website in terms of SEO, speed, tags, landing pages, URL, keywords, competitors, etc. 20 On-Page and Off-Page SEO Techniques: A Checklist Search Engine Marketing (SEM) Today firms have to find innovative ways to sustain in the market. With the vast impact and the influence of the digital marketing, today every business and marketer have eyes on SEM, an effective way to promote and augment the business. In simple words, SEM is a paid marketing of the advertisements that appear on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). There are SEM tools which make this job easy and viable for the users. These tools help augment the productivity with automation, improved relevance to the consumers’ needs and more value for the business as it needs lesser resources. upGrad’s Exclusive Digital Marketing Webinar for you – What’s new in Marketing? document.createElement('video'); https://cdn.upgrad.com/blog/rumi-ambastha.mp4   #7 SEMRush An all-in-one search engine marketing tool, SEMRush is a toolkit which is a must for all digital marketing professionals. It is simple and easily usable tool which can be applied for setting up different business accounts for technical SEO audit, semantic core application, brand position tracking, fresh ideas for organic tracking, competitive intelligence, backlink audits and digital media marketing analytics. The ad strategy analysis and ad creative keywords search data help to improve the PPC (Pay Per Click) results and keep a watch on the competitors. Using SEMRush tool, a user can also build and implement a practical social media strategy. Guess what? The user can also collaborate with multiple brands, design content for multiple platforms and discover trending topics in the industry. #8 Buzzsumo Though many digital marketers, prefer to consider Buzzsumo as an SEO tool, we must not forget that SEO and SEM work in parallel with each other. A powerful arsenal for keyword research, this tool helps to understand which keywords work the best for the search engine marketing campaigns and helps to get the best results from SEM initiatives. Right from content discovery to brand monitoring, content designing, creation and management, competitor and consumer research, Buzzsumo is a one-stop solution for the phases of SEM. #9 KeywordCompetitor KeywordCompetitor is a perfect tool to know about your competitors’ paid keywords, ads, and landing pages. The tool also gives information on a daily basis about the various changes in the ads, keywords and landing pages. Though it is a paid tool, it is definitely a worthy investment for the business. You get a notification the moment your competitor gets an upper hand with respect to the visibility and reach of the ads. #10 iSpionage Get the awareness about the competitor’s keywords, ad copy and ad budget using this tool. It is an apt tool to derive the maximum ROI for the investments. All this results in an increased drive of targeted traffic, generate more potential leads for conversions and increased conversion rates. The monthly traffic estimate analysis gives information about the ads which work well and reach the top of the Google search results. So, if you wish to have maximum results for the resources invested, this is the tool to opt for. Design-Thinking in Content Marketing: Ideas and Tools Social Media Marketing (SMM) Social media marketing is one of the most effective online marketing strategies. Unlike paid advertising, using social media marketing tools, the brands and business can grow their brand awareness and reach using the social media activities with zero monetary investment. The social media platform is transforming the way consumers and business owners look at brands and how they market themselves in the digital platform. If you wish to scale up your social media presence and the returns of the social media campaigns, here are some of the best digital marketing tools used by most of the social media marketers. #11 Hootsuite Hootsuite is a simple and influential tool for every social media marketer. Hootsuite helps to manage multiple social media accounts. It makes the process of finding, designing, scheduling, managing and reporting of various social media accounts and their respective activities very unpretentious and easier for the user. This helps the social media managers stay active and visible to the consumers 24/7. The tool also helps to track and report the social ROI, exclusively for owned and paid media marketing. With a robust, secured built-in infrastructure, this tool can cater to the needs of all business organisations, irrespective of the size. #12 Sprout Social The best tool to control and monitor the social media efforts. Sprout Social is designed to give access to people as per their needs. This helps to coordinate, delegate and manage the various social media tasks. The tool can aid in creating, scheduling and posting of social feeds along with post scheduling activities such as a comprehensive analytics platform. This tool has a special feature of social media listening, for the business to listen, understand and monitor their target audience at every step across social media platforms. #13 MeetEdgar With this tool, the user can recycle the old social media posts. The user just needs to organise the posts by category and schedule the content by category for Edgar to automatically scrutinise the content and post from each category. A creative tool for rescheduling and remarketing. This tool ensures, no social media content created goes in the recycle bin ever. These old posts reposted can get better and enhanced engagement on the platform. An excellent tool and way for the audience to reconnect with the brand. #14 Socedo For a social media campaign to be successful, there are hundreds of elements such as image, text, location, timing, demographics, etc., to be precisely designed and crafted. Socedo is a B2B demand generation tool which helps in discovering and gaining potential leads through social media channels. This is a tool which mainly focuses on outbound marketing via social media platform. A simple and user-friendly tool to find the right target audience, fitting your buyer persona. #15 Oktopost A dedicated B2B social media marketing tool, Oktopost is quite similar to Hootsuite. Having said that, it is cleaner and easier to navigate, offering a better and enhanced user experience. This tool can be deployed to monitor and manage the social media posts, keywords and brand mentions in the social media world. This also has a content curation feature helping the user to design and curate better content targeted to the audience. Of course, the social media analytics and detailed and versatile reports generated using the tool can help to track the social conversions. A simple tool for a startup to develop and deploy the social media marketing strategy. Besides this, every social media platform such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc., has its own managing tool such as Facebook Page Insights, Twitter Native Platform, etc. Best Ways to Use Instagram Marketing For Business Content Marketing Management (CMM) Today, content is the way to reach your audience and build the trust of the brand in the market. Every marketing channel must be updated with content as per the needs of the audience and the platform. The process of content marketing could be overwhelming as has multiple processes such as idea generation, designing and drafting the content, and publishing the content in different channels. Besides this, the content marketing teams have to monitor and manage the content depending on the effectiveness of the created content. A powerful content marketing campaign requires different skills such as writing skills, social media skills, video-production skills, etc. Here are some of the most prevalent content marketing tools used in the industry. #16 Buffer Buffer is a tool which can keep the user on track and help gain meaningful results for the content created and marketed. An everyday strategy to monitor and manage the social media feeds and analyse the effectiveness of the content shared. Not just text, Buffer can help schedule and manage campaigns of image and videos as well. The user can design and draft the content besides posting the same. It gives insight into the best time to post to reach the targeted audience. Using this tool, businesses can channelise the content quickly and effectively using optimum resources. #17 Trendspottr Get to know the latest emerging trends in the industry and create content which matches the changing requirements of the audience. Be the trendsetter and ahead of the competitors using this tool. This tool helps the user to tap information about the trending topics, popular hashtags, potential influencers of the industry along with the appropriate keyword insights. In short, discover and share the right content at the right time to the right audience and reap maximum fruits for the content marketing efforts. #18 Contently When the business grows, it is important to scale up the content available in multiple channels at the same time. This is one of the challenges faced by most of the firms when the team is too small to handle this huge task. Contently is a tool which helps in producing large, high-end content generation. Contently focusses on the storytelling method of curating content in order to build the brand. It is a powerful automation platform for editorial calendars, content management across different platforms, systematic workflows and approval structures. If you wish to create engaging and influencing content, this is the tool to install. #19 Landscape by Sprout Social Images play a very important role in capturing the attention of the audience. But, sourcing the right images which satisfy the tastes of the audience and impacts the marketing campaign is a challenging task. Landscape by Sprout Social is a remarkable image resizing tool for social media channels. With just a drag and drop, the user can effortlessly design the image as per the requirements of the channel. #20 Google AdWords – Keyword Planner The Google AdWords is a one-stop platform form to know and build strategies for keywords, timelines, target audience, and content creation and marketing. The user can target multiple audiences with same or multiple contents with just a few clicks. An easily navigable tool, Google AdWords is an excellent means to reach the maximum audience and track the campaign’ effectiveness. Organic Content Marketing for Growth of Your Business Email Marketing Think of Email as the grandparent of social media. Yet, it is reliable and relevant even today. It is one of the most versatile and consistent ways of reaching the targeted customers and monetizing the same. The brands can communicate with their target audience and promote their products and services using email marketing. If you prioritise email marketing for your business, here are the best digital marketing tools to automate your email marketing strategy. #21 MailChimp One of the best Email Marketing Automation tools, MailChimp can help to collate statistics, sending emails and improving the performance of the business. Businesses can also use it to send out surveys to the audience. The MailChimp dashboards are simple and easy to manage and read the output of the campaign. The tool also helps to create segments of the target audience and track and monitor the respective behaviour of the segment. Above all, you can create, send, monitor and analyse creative and effective email marketing campaigns swaying the business operations. #22 Active Campaign A very easy, user-friendly setup, Active Campaign is a tool which is a must for sales and email marketing automation. It helps to run email marketing campaigns which are driven by the behaviour of the audience. Besides offering email marketing assistance, it also helps in customer relationship management, sales automation, content automation, etc. A great tool to stay connected with your old and new audience. #23 ConvertKit This is a robust email marketing tool for all professional bloggers, marketers, writers, etc. This is extremely easy to use and a powerful tool. It offers easy content upgrades and incentives along with email signup forms. Brands can use this tool to automatically segment the audience who are existing customers and those who are the potential customers of the future. A great email marketing automation means for all the brands who rely on email marketing to connect with their audience. 9 Most Advanced Techniques of Email Marketing Marketing Automation With the advancement of technology, marketing has become a streamlined process through automation. Today, every repetitive and mundane task of marketing can be automated with the powerful digital marketing tools. This process of marketing automation not only reduces the time but also reduces the human error, manages the complexity of the marketing and manages, monitors and optimises the effects of the marketing efforts. Scroll a little to know the best marketing automation tools. #24 Marketo The best solution for all automating all the marketing activities. It is mature and advanced marketing automation tool for business organisations deploy huge marketing campaigns across various platforms. Business organisations can nurture leads automatically using this tool. A tool which helps to augment revenue and lead management system and mobile marketing. A cloud-based tool suitable for all the size of business organisations. #25 Hubspot An inbound marketing automation leads generation tool. The goal is to shift the outbound leads to inbound conversions. The tool helps to create content, manage the social media marketing of the content, and email marketing campaigns. The tool also has a marketing analytics dashboard which helps in the manage the automation process of the marketing and offers multiple reports for the business. In short, convert, track and optimise the lead generation. #26 Eloqua This is an end to end marketing automation software product by Oracle. This tool offers all-inclusive features such as campaign management, lead management, targeting, audience segmentation, etc. There are different campaign templates for different marketing objectives. The user can also nurture the audience through automated emails. This tool also aids in setting up webinars and up-sell campaigns. Future Marketing: The Ultimate Collaboration of Branding with AI Growth Hacking Tools Growth hacking is the buzzword in the startup world. Rapid experiments in multiple marketing trials and product development with a single unified objective are the mantra of the most budding business organisations. Those firms who are able to achieve this fast-paced success and sustain in the industry through this unconventional method are referred as growth hackers. There are different digital marketing tools for growth hacking catering to a different purpose, such as feedback and market insight tools, traffic growth tools, user experience tools, etc. Listed down are the popular growth hacking tools used by the digital marketers. #27 Colibri Scale up your traffic and reach your target audience using Colibri. It helps to optimise your website and offers greater visibility in the online world. This gives information about conversions and your competitor’s audience. It is an SEO driven tool to automate and monitor the online marketing initiatives. This is a good resource to collate data from multiple platforms and monitor what people are saying about the brand. The SEO analysis helps to rank the page in Google search. #28 Unbounce If you want to create user-friendly landing pages and also carry out building, publishing and A/B testing for the same, Unbounce is the tool you need to opt for. It helps the marketers to check the performance of the landing pages using a simple drag and drop feature. The results of the tests can help the user to optimise the landing pages as per the pattern of the visitors. #29 OptimizePress The content might be ready. But designing the content in an appealing format is a test in itself. OptimizePress helps to high converting landing pages, sales pages and membership gateways. The user can also use this to create and manage product launch funnels, free training and course pages, authoritative blog pages, etc. All these designs and templates are available for mobile-ready versions as well. The live editor system offers a real-time editing of the content. If you wish to manage text, image and video data in multiple technologies, this is the best tool to use. #30 Qualaroo It is an exceptional consumer feedback tool that enables the users to deploy and analyse a survey in a most simplified fashion. This appears as a small widget on the bottom part of the website. This tool lets the designer create different rules about when and where the surveys are triggered as well as which questions need to be asked for which target audience. If you are a startup you would want to know when, where and why your audience got connected as well as disconnected with your brand. Install today to gain a better understanding of the target audience. Popular Digital Marketing Blogs Beginners Guide to YouTube Marketing : Complete List How to Monetize Your YouTube Channel? Top 5 Actionable Steps The Complete Guide on setting up a LinkedIn Company Page Everything You Need To Know About Digital Marketing A Complete Guide to Digital Marketing Strategy: What it is and How to create it? Digital Marketing Tutorial: A Step-by-Step Guide To Become an Expert Future of Digital Marketing: How It Goes From Here Importance of Digital Marketing: Top 10 Reasons Your Business Needs it Digital Marketing Challenges: How to Win Amidst the Challenges in Digital Marketing #31 Nightwatch Nightwatch is a forward-thinking SEO tracker and one of the most effective marketing tools. With Nightwatch, you can: Visualize your data on detailed graphs Segment your keywords and backlinks thoroughly Discover new ranking keywords Get smart notifications about site changes and opportunities Create a thorough overview of your website’s search visibility through integration with Google Analytics and Search Console Customize and schedule unlimited drag-and-drop reports #32 VEED Video Editor VEED.IO is a powerful and user-friendly online video editing tool that allows users to easily edit their videos right in their web browser. With VEED.IO, users can trim, crop, and rotate their videos, add text and captions, include music and sound effects, and even apply filters and effects to enhance the visual quality of their videos. The tool offers a wide range of customization options for subtitles and captions, including font selection, color options, and text placement. With its impressive range of features and intuitive user interface, VEED.IO is a tool that can help anyone create stunning, professional-quality videos with ease. Growth Hacking – The New Marketing Buzzword Even though this is a comprehensive list of digital marketing tools and guide for all the basic marketing initiatives and requirements, there are hundreds of tools available in the market which would fit your needs and budget. Analyse wisely before you opt for a tool because this is the key feature for a success or a failure of any Advanced Certificate in Digital Marketing & Communication effort.
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by Anshuman Agrahari

24 Apr 2023

15 Social Media Marketing Techniques for 2024
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8691
Did you know that the number of social media users worldwide is close to 3.2 billion, up 13% year-on-year? Yes, this is the statistics about the popularity of the social media world as per the Global Digital Report. These numbers signify the continuous vast impact of social media on both businesses and consumer benefits. In simple words, your target audience might exist in the social media world. Scroll down and learn about the effective growth hacking and social media marketing techniques to engage with your audience fruitfully. Let’s get it straight. We eat, sleep and get up with social media activities. In the last decade, social media has become an indispensable part of our personal as well as professional lives. And, it would be an understatement to say, that, ‘social media have impacted businesses as well’. In the current digital world, social media, as a separate marketing channel, are a significant part of the marketing strategy for any business organization. Having said that, businesses must think beyond the sales pitch and use the social media channel to constantly engage, retain and create a loyal customer base. If you are a beginner in social media marketing, and want to gain expertise, check out our digital marketing certifications from top universities.  There are multiple social media channels used by businesses such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Snapchat, etc. Now marketers are ought to look at social media channels as end-to-end consumer reach solution, rather than a regular content publishing medium. Offering a stiff competition to the traditional marketing techniques, social media channels and the respective metrics are perpetually aiding the marketers to comprehend the audience preferences and purchasing behavior in the real-time scenario. You might think that you know social media channels completely, as you have been using the same for personal purposes for quite a long time. The truth is, what works for a personal account, would not be applicable and effective for a business purpose. To successfully exploit the social media channels and create effective engagements and certainly augment the return on investments, businesses need to develop and deploy a well-thought social media strategy. If you want to unleash and leverage the true potential of social media marketing, we are here to share the best and competent techniques, hacks and tips for effective and optimum use of the medium for the business purpose. #1 Video is Paramount & Everything In the last few years, marketers have realized that video marketing works very well, it is less competitive and cost-effective. It is important for businesses to have structured video contents. Businesses ought to know the recipe for viral video production and marketing for their specific domain, to maintain high engagement and interaction. The attention span of the average social media user is steadily declining, which puts the marketers in a fix to create content that will capture even the most passive users. All this would certainly drive better and long-lasting leads and conversions for the business. #2 Use a Television Style of Content Structure If you are thinking about the video content strategy, consider using TV-like shows on social media channels such as Facebook or Instagram. This type of television-style of content structuring and marketing will help the business to target a wider audience based on specific interests. In 2019, content is the king and context of the content is also the king of the business. A larger penetration to the skin of the audience is always beneficial for the business to understand the changing thought and consumption patterns of the customers. Many companies have started adopting this technique of creating Television type video series, and it works perfectly well. It keeps the user connected with the Brand/Channel and has a great recall value. #3 Bookmarks in Twitter Yes! Finally, Twitter has added the ‘save’ feature with bookmarks. This will help not to waste time, scrolling the thousands of ‘liked’ tweets to find the one you are searching for. One can bookmark a tweet by simply clicking the ‘share’ icon on the bottom right of a tweet and click ‘add a tweet to bookmarks’ and the tweet will be added to the bookmarks. The bookmarks option in the profile settings helps the user to quickly see the bookmarked tweets and helps the user, utilize the time spent on the channel efficiently. #4 Engaging and Compelling Conversations Just like how your time is important, so is the time of the audience. So, it is important to have an engaging and compelling conversation through thought-provoking, interesting and creative questions. Not too big, nor too small. Design posts and tweets with a persuasive text and an eye-catching image to get the best reach and productive engagement with your audience. There is engaging conversation on Video Platforms, viewers and business owners are keen to see the user comments on these platforms, reply them and analyze the potential of the product or service offered. #5 Creating Collaborative Stories Facebook allows the user to post content that appears for 24 hours and is applicable for groups and events as well. Users can post stories that are visible only to the groups and specific event pages. Moderated by the admins, these stories could have specific and private hashtags, ensure content is appropriate and on-brand. Collaborative stories are an excellent and fun-filled new way to engage with the audience by creating excitement and offering incentives. User-generated content from the participants can help build a sense of community and brand advocacy and give you more information on your most engaged customers. #6 Meaningful Messaging More than promotional content, it is important for marketers to share and spread meaningful messages to their loyal audience as opposed to unending spam and irrelevant information. Today, businesses have a greater responsibility of effectively crafting and sharing personalized and valuable messages to their audience to expand the reach of the product or service. No more superficial messages or zero value-add content shall have an impact on the consumers. Modern consumers want organizations to respect their time and add eloquent value to it. #7 Content Connect to Current Events Take advantage of the ongoing events of the global as well as local regions to boost engagement and social media marketing initiatives. For instance, when the GST was initiated and implemented, many startups, as well as established business firms, drafted and shared GST themed content to promote the product or service. Connecting the social media content to the current events is extremely powerful and has the potential to grow the business exponentially. Though this type of content has a short life span, it works exponentially well during that time. Best Digital Marketing Courses Online Advanced Certificate in Brand Communication Management - MICA Advanced Certificate in Digital Marketing and Communication - MICA Performance Marketing Bootcamp - Google Ads from upGrad To Explore all our courses, visit our page below. Digital Marketing Courses #8 Hyper-Personalization is the Key With more and more social media marketing channels evolving each day, it is becoming critical to differentiate your product and have a unique and attractive presentation of the brand. Hyper-personalization is where the big money on digital marketing is at. Most business organizations have started indulging in customization as a tactic to win and retain customers. More than ever now is the time, firms cannot ignore the personalization strategy. A hyper-personalized social media strategy with the help of the marketing insights and activity pattern through social media metrics dashboard is the key to the success of social media initiatives. #9 Variety in Content Whether it is food or clothing, we all love variety. And, this mindset of variety is applicable even for data consumption of the consumers. Today, social media is not about just sharing a random text or image and promoting the same. Marketers need to focus on the taste and preferences of the audience and design a variety of content accordingly. Text, image, video, GIFs, live chats, polls, blogs, pdf’s, personalized messages, exclusive notifications, and offers, etc. are a different variety of content which social media account managers must focus upon to cater and satisfy the curiosity of the audience. Use exclusive and niche content creation tools to offer the best in class content for audience consumption. Remember, social media is a platform to strengthen the brand voice and personality. #10 Imitate Competitions Among Followers Competitions are the way forward to engage and enhance the output marketing labors. An excellent way to grow the reach and followers on social media platforms. For instance, ask the followers to share their opinions about a product or service, just after its launch, through a compelling text or video message. Offer a gift or a giveaway for the best responder. Make the competition with a time limit, create urgency among the audience, concentrate on the engagement in that short frame of time, and encourage your followers to participate in the competition. You can also create a hashtag, which could trend for that specific time frame. #11 Conducting Polls Regularly Just like online reviews, many businesses understand and believe the power of polls and surveys. Most businesses and marketers feel that they know their audience preferences and needs very well. And, then when the product or service doesn’t do well in the market, it leads to the futility of all the efforts. Hence, it is important for businesses to continuously conduct polls on their social media channels on a regular basis. Polls are an easy & smart method to gather engagement on the social media space and aid in understanding the changing needs and preferences of the audience. Increased and continuous engagement and social media presence would help to augment social media marketing efforts. In-demand Digital Marketing Skills Advertising Courses Influencer Marketing Courses SEO Courses Performance Marketing Courses SEM Courses Email Marketing Courses Content Marketing Courses Social Media Marketing Courses Marketing Analytics Courses Web Analytics Courses Display Advertising Courses Affiliate Marketing Courses #12 Instagram Story Highlights The best way to attract the audience to see the most important information first. For easy viewing, these Instagram story highlights appear right below the bios option. This feature helps the user or the brand to highlight the trending or best stories of the business and post them permanently on the profile. These can be saved, reposted and measured for the long-term performance. One can plan, organize and post story highlights as per the theme, campaign, date, event, etc. Strategies To Drive Traffic from Instagram #13 Branded Snapchat Lenses Using Snapchat’s Lens Studio, every business or brand can create their own augmented reality lenses. The desktop app gives instructions for trainees to start with basic 2D animation, while more advanced creators can access the API and fashion complex lenses from scratch. Once lenses are created, the user will get a unique Snapcode, which can be used to share from anywhere, and anyone can unlock your lens. If you have an in-house creative team that can support to build and create lenses for campaigns, this is an exceptional prospect to attempt something a little different on Snapchat and engage users. A unique and creative way to build and promote a brand identity in the Snapchat platform. upGrad’s Exclusive Digital Marketing Webinar for you – Watch our webinar on “What’s new in Marketing” document.createElement('video'); https://cdn.upgrad.com/blog/rumi-ambastha.mp4   #14 Automated Promoted Tweets Twitter’s Promote Mode allows the brands to run automated ad campaigns on Twitter for just $99 per month. Once the business accounts are enabled with the Promote Mode, Twitter will automatically amplify the brand’s tweets based on twitter algorithms. For the users, this will appear the same yet another promoted tweet. If you do not have a dedicated in-house social media team, this feature would be the best option to run the social media campaigns on twitter. #15 Audience Insights Think beyond posting and promoting. See what is working and what is not working. Whether it is Facebook Page or a Group, or a Twitter account, or any other social media platform, constantly watch the audience engagement. In the present scenario, most social media platforms offer consumer dashboards and enormous metrics to measure and monitor the audience at every stage of the business. Constant monitoring of the metrics and designing social media content strategies and other initiatives as per the changing views and approaches of the audience is essential to reap the maximum output from the social media platforms. This will help to focus and invest resources in the strategies that are working and discard the ideas that are futile. Digital Marketing Free courses to Learn Influencer marketing free course Introduction to advertising free course Influencer marketing right free course SEO basics free course SEM basics free course Email marketing free course Social media marketing introduction free course How to leverage user generated content free course Content marketing free course Fundamentals of marketing free course Brand marketing masterclass free course Conclusion Engagement in the social media space is elusive because, while there are many techniques, there is no one standard recipe for success. That said, while there aren’t any steadfast solutions, we can study patterns of success. What would work for one business, might not work for another? By constantly revamping and redesigning the social media strategy and experimenting with the new features and ideas of social media marketing, there is always a chance of increasing engagement and delighting the audience. These above few social media hacks and tips could help to get rid of the tech and tactic fatigue. If you are curious to get into the world of digital marketing, check out MICA & upGrad’s Advanced Certificate in Digital Marketing & Communication. Become an expert in email marketing, social media marketing, content marketing, branding, marketing analysis, and PR. Learn digital marketing courses online from the World’s top Universities. Earn Masters, Executive PGP, or Advanced Certificate Programs to fast-track your career. Popular Digital Marketing Blogs Beginners Guide to YouTube Marketing : Complete List How to Monetize Your YouTube Channel? Top 5 Actionable Steps The Complete Guide on setting up a LinkedIn Company Page Everything You Need To Know About Digital Marketing A Complete Guide to Digital Marketing Strategy: What it is and How to create it? Digital Marketing Tutorial: A Step-by-Step Guide To Become an Expert Future of Digital Marketing: How It Goes From Here Importance of Digital Marketing: Top 10 Reasons Your Business Needs it Digital Marketing Challenges: How to Win Amidst the Challenges in Digital Marketing
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by Anshuman Agrahari

08 Jan 2021

The Emerging Technologies to Watch for 2018 – 2024
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6254
A few years back, a research was conducted by Forrester about the progressive behaviour and pattern of the B2B customers. The study revealed that 74% of B2B buyers often research half or more than half of their work purchases online. The market research also discovered that approximately 56% of the buyers today prefer to buy their official products online. ‘Convenience’ is the major factor of influence in the shift to online from offline. 74% of B2B customers feel convenient to make a purchase online than deal with sales personnel. Undoubtedly, the results of the study and the pioneering data-driven marketing statistics have shackled the cuffs of the conventional marketers and sales moguls. The question, ‘what’s next’ is a constant in a tech geek’s professional life. When it comes to technology, there is always something fresh and the hunt to develop and implement a new technology which could augment businesses is unyielding. The inquisitiveness to know and seek knowledge about the technology and how it is going to impact the daily lives of the human species. A few years back, who could have thought that social, mobile, cloud, etc., technological platforms would rule out daily lives. The accelerated growth of the user’s needs and their expectations to interact in the real-time scenarios on these applications has disrupted the business ecosystem. These technological headways play a compelling role to face the challenges of the global world. These emerging technologies have the indeterminate power to strengthen the lives, transform the global economic scenarios and make this world a better place for the upcoming and future generations. Must-have Skills at Different Stages of a Sales Career Technology is indeed, one of the greatest change agents in the present world, and is moving faster than ever before. It has the supremacy to offer innovative solutions to the global challenges. The emerging technologies have brought a radical shift in the information, technology and development sector and thereby impacting the other industries along with sales and marketing business segments well. Mapping the imminent technology proposal of the business demands the business leaders to first identify these emerging technology trends. They ought to learn the dynamics of the technology and how it would impact the present and the future of the business. Here are some of the most revolutionary and disruptive emerging technologies: #1 Big Data Big data is the buzzword. The last few years, every business firm is taking enormous efforts to learn and implement the uses of big data. The Big data technology is a very simple and effective concept. An exceptional method to collect, organise and comprehend the data for the benefit of the business. The quantitative output of the data-driven analysis is one of the core strengths of the big data technology. For example, in the healthcare industry, an enormous amount of data analysis of a series of patients for a disease, could help to diagnosis the various signs and symptoms of the disease and offer a rational medical solution for the same. A big data expert could also help to find the hot spots of crime in the city for the Police Department and support to reduce crime. The Big data technology involves building huge data architectures to organise and analyze the unstructured data and offer real-time value for the business. The vast augmentation of the digital data has enabled not just big, but also the small and medium enterprises disrupt the power of the big-data. This technology with right expertise would help the business to lower the cost of consumer gaining, augment sales and step into new business markets. Understanding and Conducting a Market Research like Experts #2 Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) An explicit example, in our daily lives, is Google’s ‘Hello Google’ or the Amazons ‘Alexa’. Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence have taken huge leaps in the in the recent past few years. For example, a business can apply machine learning and offer the consumer a fresh purchasing option, depending on the analysis of the history of the purchasing pattern and taste of the consumer. Machine Learning could be an effective tool for the cyber financial frauds. Artificial Intelligence could be a more robust system to combat the new complex cyber-attacks. In simple terms, the highly advanced computers (machines) performing tasks, which is habitually done by humans. The ML and AI technologies blend a variety of other skills and expertise such as neural networks, deep learning, and natural language processing. This also includes other statistical concepts to appreciate, learn, forecast, acclimate and potentially function autonomously. The machines are trained by human beings to learn and uplift the conduct of the human, in turn leading to more smart systems. This technology is enabled by the powerful data sets. These smart machines and systems would be able to think on their own and produce unexpected outputs for the benefit of the security of the business. The industries which are expected to yield from ML and AI are hospitality, medical and other service sectors. The image recognition in the airport is a simple example of ML in our daily lives. The speech recognition by the Google assistant or Apple’s Siri is an explicit poignant idea and implementation of ML and AI. As the high-end systems replace humans and perform tasks with immense credibility, this technology will question of what it means to be human and the rapidly posing risks of this technology on the human species. Learn Online MBA Courses from the World’s top Universities. Earn Masters, Executive PGP, or Advanced Certificate Programs to fast-track your career. #3 Market Automation Every entrepreneur and business tycoon must be aware that the marketing automation is here to stay. In the present-day scenario, a sales and marketing personnel must automate processes in every way possible to offer the best experiences for the consumers. Businesses must leverage the benefits of this exclusive technology to eradicate the human-exclusive tasks. A robust automation tool is tailored to the explicit requirements of the business. In simple words, marketing automation is a method to use technology and software applications to market the business products and services in several platforms and automate the repetitive tasks of the consumers. Marketing automation helps to save time, lowers the operating costs of the business, and optimises the performance of the business. The online e-commerce leverages the best of automation technology. An e-commerce industry can use automation technology to understand the customer’s buying cycle and share the right message at the right time. For example, if he or she has left the shopping cart without making a purchase. An automated marketing system could send the customer a reminder message of the purchase or if any new discounts or offers are available for the same product. Sales 101: An Optimum Approach to Find a Happy Customer Learning the history of customer data purchases, business organisations can upsell, cross-sell and trigger cycle sell for the consumers. By reducing the human error using this technology, business entities can effectively manage their marketing campaigns and increase the performance of the marketing an s sales team. #4 Internet of Things (IoT) In a recent article by Forbes, about the Internet of Things (IoT), it stated that IoT is going to comprise 30 billion devices by 2020. IoT is seen as the change agent for the luxurious and effective lifestyle for the consumers, offering valuable customer interactions and exceptional experiences for them. IoT is one of the most exciting areas of focus today. The idea revolves around the nano-sensors circulating in the human body or any specific object. Once connected with the technology, this is going to have a proliferating impact on the various sectors such as medicine, agriculture, architecture etc. IoT is an interconnecting technology. In simple terms, an interconnected smart home system. For example, the doorbells could be connected to a voice-based application which tells the information about the person on the doorstep. Every home appliances could relate to each other, such as a thermostat, security cameras, security lights, television sets, etc., and in turn, connected to the technology. A consumer-centric single, seamless solution for all their problems. Amazon’s Alexa is a great example of fetching IoT to the user’s living room. The benefits of IoT is far beyond the four walls. The business entities could take the advantage of IoT by tracing and monitoring assets and offer real-time value and information to the consumers about the ups and downs of the market. In short, a strategy of prevention before the disaster. The occupational potentials offered by IoT are infinite. #5 Cloud Computing The market forecast states that in the next five years, 50% of the business organisations and global companies are moving their data to the cloud. This also points that Cloud Computing Technology companies such as Microsoft have greater responsibility to safeguard and secure the consumer valuable data. The use of cloud computing technology would ease the worry of security issues of the data for the business firms and help them focus on other important business activities. No business organisation can ignore the benefits of cloud computing and must build a flexible and robust customer support system. For example, the educational institutions can leverage the use of cloud computing technology and aid students to enroll and access data of online classes from anywhere and everywhere. In the healthcare sector, operations and medical organisations can maintain the patient data, check the status of the patient and offer necessary treatments as and when necessary, without storing the data in the hardcopy of files. The Ultimate Sales and Marketing Resource Guide #6 Blockchain Technology The Blockchain Technology is the disruptor of the Financial Industry. Mostly espoused by the cryptocurrency industry, today, even the conventional banks have started to clout its usage. The rise of bitcoin industry has raised the ambiguous inquisitiveness of the blockchain technology affecting the emerging markets. The blockchain technology is a digital principled ledger which creates numerous chained blocks of data and ensures sales and marketing resources are focused on the numbers of the business. Each block preserves cryptographically appropriate information which is infeasible for a discrete entity to demolish. In the financial industry, the potential and implication of the blockchain technology are vast. This is useful to scale the speed of the financial transactions, trim the transaction costs and enlarge cash flow. This could also offer innovative methods in the way markets and government function. A clear understanding of the business opportunity and the potential of the technology is critical for the appropriate usage. Along with machine learning and artificial intelligence, blockchain technology can automate and lift the daily business operations through its unique way of the inbuilt functioning architecture. For example, the blockchain technology can aid to eliminate the intermediaries of the payment and settlement systems of the capital markets. In the government digital initiatives, this can reduce the manual efforts of accounting and auditing.  An optimum technology to reduce the manual mundane tasks of the employees. The innate characteristics of the blockchain technology of being secure, transparent and autonomy have led to being solution-generator for different verticals of the industry. #7 Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) The fascinating Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) is the current catchphrase of every technocrat. The AR and VR are potentially remodelling the way consumers interact with each other and the technology, inspiring the growth of pervasive settings. For instance, AR allows the user to blend the real and virtual world. With the help of VR technology, firms can deploy virtual business training and remote involvement. These technologies are changing the way the end-user is perceiving and interacting with the digital world. The system software along with development platforms and interface compete to deliver this technology. The AR and VR had already had its digital footprint in the gaming industry. Most big companies such as Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Unity etc., have already deployed this technology and viewed the results. The technology is also helpful to know in-depth about the changing tastes of the target audience and has immense potential to influence the business strategies. The global companies like Walmart have adopted this technology for recruitment and training of the employees and offer a smooth experience of the consumers. The PlayStation VR, Oculus Rift, Google DayDream, Samsung Gear, etc., are some of the evident examples of AR and VR. Do You Really Need an Offline MBA to Become a Great Manager Sooner or later, these technological trends are going to take over every aspect of the business. Now is the time, when business firms and industrialists can bet their money on this vastly rising technology inclinations. They must make the best of the efforts to learn and appreciate the future disruptions associated with these emerging technologies. Looks like, the sky is the limit for the human creativity and these emerging and influential technologies are just the tip of the iceberg which are going to shake up the world tomorrow. If you want to learn more about marketing and entrepreneurship, Liverpool Business School & upGrad offers Master of Business Administration (MBA) Liverpool Business School which helps you to transform your career. The program provides 1-on-1 mentorship from industry leaders, 1-week immersion program at University campus, dual credentials (MBA from LBS & PGPM from IMT), network with peers at offline basecamps and more.
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by Anshuman Agrahari

08 Jan 2021

Things to Look Out For When Trying to Find the Best WordPress Host
Blogs
5062
When it comes to online blogs there’s little doubt that WordPress is the name which stands out as the most popular platform of choice. Over 60 million people use WordPress around the globe, and overall over 30% of all blog sites are powered by this free resource which boasts more than 45,000 plugin options allowing customers to design a unique and personally relevant space. Best Digital Marketing Courses Online Advanced Certificate in Brand Communication Management - MICA Advanced Certificate in Digital Marketing and Communication - MICA Performance Marketing Bootcamp - Google Ads from upGrad To Explore all our courses, visit our page below. Digital Marketing Courses However, at the end of the day no matter how wonderful, well designed, insightful, useful or innovative a site it, it can only ever be as good as its hosting provider. Why a good host is so crucial Although the content of a WordPress blog is obviously important to both attract and retain readers, those navigating to it expect to find a site which loads quickly and is consistently available. The owner of a blog site expects the same too, along with a host which understands and caters to the WordPress system, is affordable, and offers a comprehensive and accessible customer support service – just like JavaPipe’s new WordPress hosting. In-demand Digital Marketing Skills Advertising Courses Influencer Marketing Courses SEO Courses Performance Marketing Courses SEM Courses Email Marketing Courses Content Marketing Courses Social Media Marketing Courses Marketing Analytics Courses Web Analytics Courses Display Advertising Courses Affiliate Marketing Courses Learn digital marketing courses online from the World’s top Universities. Earn Masters, Executive PGP, or Advanced Certificate Programs to fast-track your career. Key tips on how to find the best host for your WordPress site It is important to commit a decent chunk of time to research different hosting providers – even if they have been recommended to you directly or via an online article. Tip #1 – Average loading times/speed stats There are two huge advantages to having a hosting package with excellent loading speeds. Not only does it make it easy for you to add content make updates and generally navigate your own site, but it also makes it easy for visitors to open and access your WordPress site too. The fact is that people browsing online are impatient and if they have to wait an unreasonable length of time to do anything they tend to move on. Digital Marketing Free courses to Learn Influencer marketing free course Introduction to advertising free course Influencer marketing right free course SEO basics free course SEM basics free course Email marketing free course Social media marketing introduction free course How to leverage user generated content free course Content marketing free course Fundamentals of marketing free course Brand marketing masterclass free course Organic Content Marketing for Growth of Your Business Tip #2 – Uptime record A poor uptime record could mean your site will be unreachable for a damaging percentage of the time. It’s not unreasonable to look for a 99%+ uptime record. Tip #3 – Customer service commitment If you need help is there an instant chat or telephone helpline option? If contact is only by email urgent issues cannot be dealt with easily. Tip #4 – Value for money Most hosts offer packages, but make sure they meet your needs both now and in the future. For example is there an option to upgrade for a reasonable fee? Low priced deals may leave you with unreliable shared hosting and no opportunity to move to a dedicated server down the line. upGrad’s Exclusive Digital Marketing Webinar for you – What’s new in Marketing? document.createElement('video'); https://cdn.upgrad.com/blog/rumi-ambastha.mp4 Tip #5 – Trustworthiness A well-established host with good reviews on sites across the web is always a good option. Content Strategy: 6 Interesting Features To Consider Not everyone has the same needs from a host, so what works for a contact may not be great for you; while some articles claiming they know of the best ever host are being sponsored by that particular company and therefore cannot be considered to be 100% unbiased Popular Digital Marketing Blogs Beginners Guide to YouTube Marketing : Complete List How to Monetize Your YouTube Channel? Top 5 Actionable Steps The Complete Guide on setting up a LinkedIn Company Page Everything You Need To Know About Digital Marketing A Complete Guide to Digital Marketing Strategy: What it is and How to create it? Digital Marketing Tutorial: A Step-by-Step Guide To Become an Expert Future of Digital Marketing: How It Goes From Here Importance of Digital Marketing: Top 10 Reasons Your Business Needs it Digital Marketing Challenges: How to Win Amidst the Challenges in Digital Marketing
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by Anshuman Agrahari

24 Oct 2018

GDPR Compliance and Why You Should Know About it as a Marketer?
Blogs
5167
Living in the age of the Internet, where both web and mobile apps have become a necessity for us, we can no longer hold on to our personal information in a firm grasp. In fact, in this digital age, data is the currency that netizens use to gain access to a variety of services and content online. And for marketers, this data is the key to success – it provides valuable insights into consumer behaviour patterns, their tastes and preferences, the latest market and consumer trends, and much more. It is by tapping into the consumers’ data that marketers chalk out their sales and marketing campaigns and develop their products and services. However, the breach and exploitation of personal data has now become a serious issue. While brands are supposed to use the personal data of their customers to create “personalized experiences” for them, many businesses have started misusing and exploiting this data. GDPR draws a thin line between using and misusing the data. Let’s look at it in depth. What is GDPR? The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is the new data protection law in EU aimed at protecting European citizens from the breach of personal data. Although it was adopted in April 2016, it officially came to effect on May 25, 2018, replacing the 1995  Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC. GDPR has been designed to create a safer online environment for EU citizens and also to help them reclaim their personal information. It is a modern take on personal privacy through standard directives that will lay down the foundation for data handling and compliance. GDPR will bring a shift of power to the EU citizens by allowing them to take charge of their personal data and decide how they would like to share it with brands and companies. Under this law, every company dealing with the personal data of EU citizens must comply with its regulations. 5 Strategies to Grow your Startup when You have No Budget The six core areas covered by GDPR are: Right to access: Companies must be able to provide a copy of an individual’s data on their request. This allows one to find out where, why, and how their data is being used. Right to erasure: Individuals now hold the ‘right to be forgotten, ‘ that is they can request a data controller to delete all their personal data. One can also ask companies not to allow third-party vendors to access or process his/her data. Privacy by design: Companies designing new systems must consider data compliance and data protection of their consumers right from the start. All processes involved should be created in such a way that user data is only harnessed when absolutely necessary.   Data portability: GDPR validates that EU citizens can request a data controller to grant access to their data ‘in an electronic format.’ They can then switch to another data controller of their choice. Data breach notification: In case user data is leaked, or hacked, or lost, companies must notify their consumers about the data breach within 72 hours. Data protection officers: Companies whose activities are largely data-oriented will require to appoint a data protection officer and notify them of all their activities. How will GDPR Impact Marketers? Now that GDPR is in effect, marketers must rethink and restructure their marketing strategies and campaigns to become GDPR compliant. Following are the key areas where the GDPR will impact the marketers: Explicit Consent GDPR mandates that data controllers must take ‘explicit consent’ from consumers eliminating the earlier trend of ‘implied consent.’ Now, companies are required to provide proof that individual users ‘chose’ to opt-in to communications and did not fall into the trap by any default ‘trick’ method. According to GDPR, consent to personal data should be “freely given, specific, informed, and unambiguous.” Transparency Under GDPR, companies now require to maintain complete transparency about how they wish to utilize consumer data. Thus, they must convey their plans in simple and straightforward language for everyone to understand. Also, maintaining transparency will require companies to share all relevant information including their association with other brands and third-party tools and technology. Alteration of Strategies Since explicit ‘opt-in’ consent is a must now, marketers can no longer add everyone to the attendee list of their campaigns, but only those consumers who have actually opted-in. They will now be required to provide proof for opt-in. Furthermore, the ‘right to be forgotten’ allows individuals the choice to opt-out. Thus, marketers now have to rethink their CRM strategies. For instance, if any user opts out, you cannot just mark them under ‘do not contact’ tab – you must delete all their personal information. The Role Of Digital Marketing In Elections GDPR is all about promoting relevant marketing and transparency while offering protection to EU citizens. It is a step towards reshaping the bonding between marketers and consumers. Learn MBA Courses from the World’s top Universities. Earn Masters, Executive PGP, or Advanced Certificate Programs to fast-track your career.
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by Anshuman Agrahari

27 Jun 2018

What is Marketing Analytics: Tips and Tools
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5802
As the market continues to become increasingly competitive, marketers and entrepreneurs need to have a unique ‘edge’ to their businesses if they want to thrive in the industry. And marketing analytics is the right way to ensure that you have a competitive edge over your rivals in the market. Today, marketing analytics has become an indispensable part of the business world as it offers opportunities to boost sales, predict outcomes with greater accuracy, minimize operation costs, identify potential markets, optimize your company ROI, and find ways in which you can expand the reach of your brand, to name a few. However, when it comes to marketing analytics, there is no “one size fits all.” Marketing analytics tools are many and hence, it is important to do some groundwork to know which marketing tools and tricks will work best for you. Also, the amount of data available at the disposal of companies is overwhelming and not every piece of it is relevant to your business. Thus, it is essential to have a solid plan to extract meaningful and actionable insights from massive data sets. If you want to gain expertise in digital marketing, check out our digital marketing courses. Allow us to guide you by listing some of the most productive tools and best practices of marketing analytics. Best Marketing Analytics Practices 1. Conduct Industry Analysis The first marketing analytics trick is to keep conducting industry analyses from time to time. This helps you review the potential markets for expanding your business, assess the financial factors that affect businesses in your market as well as evaluate your strengths and weaknesses against your potential competitors. April Maguire maintains: “There are two principal methods by which businesses can conduct an industry analysis. The first is a quantitative analysis, which involves the use of mathematical forecasting to assess data. The second is a qualitative analysis, which requires owners to use their own judgment when reviewing information. Once you’ve assessed your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses, you can identify and implement strategies to boost your own company’s performance.” How to Switch to Digital Marketing from Senior Conventional Marketing Role 2. Make Google Analytics Your Friend Nearly 67% of the Fortune 500 companies use Google Analytics to optimize their websites and pages. This free marketing analytics tool can be used alone or along with platforms like Segment to track and monitor upstream analytics such as best conversion channels, AdWords, etc., and also manage the data from more than a hundred advertising, analytics, sales, marketing, and testing platforms, thereby allowing you with an immense scope to streamline your marketing strategies and campaigns to ensure maximum ROI. 3. Invest In Email Marketing Emails are a great way to reach your customer base and boost customer retention. Email marketing platforms such as GetResponse, VerticalResponse, and MailChimp allow you to not only automate your lifecycle emails but also help you monitor and track which email links are driving in maximum traffic to your site. Start Freelancing your Digital Marketing Skills 4. Make One Metric Your Core Focus According to Alistair Croll and Ben Yoskovitz, the authors of Lean Analytics, marketers should find out the metric that is the most beneficial for their business and make it their core for digital marketing. In the book, they categorize the parameters according to the various types of businesses (e-commerce, SaaS, two-sided market, mobile applications, and media) and suggest that one should focus on a narrow array of critical metrics instead of tracking all the business metrics. 5. Identify Your Target Personas Identifying your target buyer personas is a key marketing analytics trick. You can only devise a solid marketing strategy if you have a thorough knowledge of the needs, preferences and pain points of your customer base. So, use the data at your disposal to uncover: The communication channels they use Their browsing habits Ways in which your customers interact with your content Their preferred types of content Such insights can help you understand your customer and devise the perfect marketing strategy to enhance the customer-brand bonding. 10 Influencer Marketing Strategies You Should Know [Gifographic] Best Digital Marketing Courses Online Advanced Certificate in Brand Communication Management - MICA Advanced Certificate in Digital Marketing and Communication - MICA Performance Marketing Bootcamp - Google Ads from upGrad To Explore all our courses, visit our page below. Digital Marketing Courses Best Marketing Analytics Tools BuzzSumo BuzzSumo is a fantastic marketing analytics tool that allows you to create and amplify your content. It also provides useful insights into the most shared content and influencers for specific topics or websites. BuzzSumo is widely used by marketers to analyze different kinds of content to identify the best performing content. Key takeaways: Optimizes content marketing to boost customer engagement and content performance The content search and content analysis reports allow marketers to delve deep into data sets to uncover meaningful insights.  Altitude by Impact This marketing analytics tool helps you dive deep into your data to unravel insights into latest customer trends and behaviours. Thus, with Altitude, you can access and analyze marketing data across various channels to make smart and data-oriented business decisions. Key takeaways: Monitor, cleanse and integrate channel-specific data within a single unified framework. Measure marketing KPIs consistently to ensure maximum efficacy of marketing strategies. Cyfe Cyfe is an all-comprehensive online marketing analytics dashboard that allows companies to track and monitor everything that’s essential for businesses such as social media, web analytics, marketing, sales, support, and infrastructure. Using Cyfe pre-built widgets, you can also extract valuable data from Google. Key takeaways: Monitor data sources and multiple websites via dashboards Display company data securely via custom widgets or Push API A Thorough Analysis of the Digital Marketing Role in 2018 Sisense Sisense is a highly productive marketing analytics software that offers useful business insights extracted from complex data through its state-of-the-art analytics. Sisense not only helps optimize your marketing campaigns but also makes insightful predictions related to future outcomes. Key takeaways: Gather large chunks of data from multiple sources and analyze them. Track customer engagement on social platforms upGrad’s Exclusive Digital Marketing Webinar for you – Watch our webinar on “What’s new in Marketing” document.createElement('video'); https://cdn.upgrad.com/blog/rumi-ambastha.mp4   MailChimp MailChimp is an excellent email marketing analytics tool that can help you identify your target audience, boost customer interactions and fortify your brand to increase sales and revenue. It is the world’s largest email marketing automation platform. Key takeaways: Collaborates with reputed e-commerce players to facilitate data purchasing for crafting customized email campaigns. Real-time reports displaying how much revenue marketing strategies bring in and how well customers interact with your brand. Crimson Hexagon Crimson Hexagon is an AI-powered consumer insights platform that allows you to detect current industry trends, analyze potential audiences and track your campaign performance. With intelligence AI insights, Crimson Hexagon makes the process of data analysis extremely convenient for digital marketers.   Key takeaways: Audience analysis helps identify target audiences, influencers and personas that hold the most potential for your brand. Brand analysis helps monitor and measure brand health and offers insights into the perceptions that drive customers towards your brand. In-demand Digital Marketing Skills Advertising Courses Influencer Marketing Courses SEO Courses Performance Marketing Courses SEM Courses Email Marketing Courses Content Marketing Courses Social Media Marketing Courses Marketing Analytics Courses Web Analytics Courses Display Advertising Courses Affiliate Marketing Courses Clicky Clicky is an efficient marketing analytics tool that provides real-time web analytics to companies. Both individual marketers and business organizations can use Clicky to track and analyze the traffic on your pages and websites in real time. Key takeaways: On-site analytics reveal the number of visitors on your site and the pages viewed. View heat maps segregated according to pages, visitors and customer segments. 9 Most Advanced Techniques of Email Marketing Digital Marketing Free courses to Learn Influencer marketing free course Introduction to advertising free course Influencer marketing right free course SEO basics free course SEM basics free course Email marketing free course Social media marketing introduction free course How to leverage user generated content free course Content marketing free course Fundamentals of marketing free course Brand marketing masterclass free course Wrapping up Marketing Analytics! Above you can see the list of Marketing Analytics tools which you can use to know all the information regarding the digital Marketing Analytics tools available in the market and come up with innovative strategies or marketing plan. Besides upscaling your sales and lead generation applications, Marketing Analytics can also give you proper insight into trends and preferences of customers. Analytics in Digital Marketing plays a crucial role and lets you know how well are you doing in the market using the current techniques. It’s usually very simple to understand- if you are paying more than the returns then the strategy used for Marketing is not helpful for the long run. MA is the process of measuring and analyzing marketing performance to maximize future growth. But here is the thing, don’t just collect the data from your marketing campaigns but work on them to come up with better strategies. So that in future you don’t have to face the usual problems. To sum up, if you’re still wondering about what is Marketing Analytics, and you want to get a deeper insight on it, come straight up to UpGrad and maximize your knowledge in the vast field of Marketing Analytics. So, there you have it – a list of best marketing analytics practices and tools that can help scale your revenues and emerge as a top player in the industry! If you want to become the top player in management and digital marketing strategies, find the Advanced Certificate in Digital Marketing & Communication Popular Digital Marketing Blogs Beginners Guide to YouTube Marketing : Complete List How to Monetize Your YouTube Channel? Top 5 Actionable Steps The Complete Guide on setting up a LinkedIn Company Page Everything You Need To Know About Digital Marketing A Complete Guide to Digital Marketing Strategy: What it is and How to create it? Digital Marketing Tutorial: A Step-by-Step Guide To Become an Expert Future of Digital Marketing: How It Goes From Here Importance of Digital Marketing: Top 10 Reasons Your Business Needs it Digital Marketing Challenges: How to Win Amidst the Challenges in Digital Marketing
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by Anshuman Agrahari

31 May 2018

Professional Marketing Skills Required in Different Stages of Career
Blogs
5777
Some of the common questions asked to a marketer in an interview are, ‘Where do you see yourself in next five to ten years? What are skills that you possess which other marketers don’t have? Why should I hire you?’. The most difficult questions for a beginner who is just stepping into the field. If you are a beginner in the marketing field or hanging with cluttered thoughts in the middle of the marketing professional ladder, you have hit the right space. This is an honest effort to help you plan, build your marketing career and hone the essential marketing skills in every step of the career path. Accidentally or on purpose, if you are entering into the world of Marketing, you must always have an open mind about every change. The marketing industry is always young and has always a something new and challenging to offer to the marketers. The Marketers must always need to evolve with the changing trends of the industry. With the dawn of the vast influence of technology, the marketing field has become an alluring and a lucrative business segment for most of the budding non-technology professionals. Marketing professionals are no more just the ‘Marketers of the Business’. The glitzy and glorifying titles such as Social Media Evangelist, Conjurer of Communications, Code Ninja, Captain of Buzz, Viral Curator, etc., are the alluring attention catchers for the new generation to energetically step into the marketing world. The life of a marketing professional is a bumpy ride filled with multiple roadblocks besides the C-suite parties and social business gatherings. A professional marketing course imparts the students, the ability to analyse the customer demand, match it to the business offerings and market it to the user. In the real world, the marketers need to think, realise and act at different levels of intellect. The road to the top might not be clear and structured path always, but there are certain standards of the marketing ladder, irrespective of the industry. How to Build Strong and Steady Professional Relationships The last decade has witnessed a great evolution in the marketing landscape and changed the math of marketing. There are majorly two different aspects of Marketing such as Traditional Marketing or the Offline Marketing and the Digital Marketing. Types of Marketing Niche Presently, there are two major types of marketing ruling the business market. They are traditional or offline marketing and digital marketing. Offline or Traditional Marketing Despite the impact of the internet, the market studies reveal that even today traditional or offline marketing holds a significant space in the field of business. Even today, in the digital era, networking, having face to face conversations and meetings, cold calls, sponsorships, client associations, etc., mean a lot in the marketing field. Online or Digital Marketing On the other hand, the digital marketing or marketing through internet also holds good to target the audience who possess access to the smartphone internet technology. The webinars, content marketing, video marketing, email marketing, digital advertising, etc., have taken a substantial part of the marketing strategy. Let’s dig deep into the Marketing Career Ladder and learn what, when and which skills are required at every stage of the career path. In a normal world, there are four standard levels in the marketing field. They are:  Level 1: Marketing Executive and Business Development Executive. Level 2: Marketing Coordinator, Product Specialist, Marketing Analyst and Marketing Manager. Level 3:  Marketing Head, Vice-President, Marketing, and President Marketing. Level 4: The Chief Marketing Officer. (Disclaimer: This is just a general hierarchy. This could differ with the industry or the firm’s organisational structure policy). The Emerging Technologies to Watch for 2018 – 2020 Before we get to learn what are the skills required to succeed and grow with each level, here is a sound advice from most of the famous marketers and industry moguls. Ensure you start your journey as a Marketing Intern with a business firm. Yes! We completely agree with this success mantra. An internship in the field of marketing would give the budding professional an insight into the real world and the pros and cons of the marketing field. In short, it will question your passion for marketing and if you would want to really go ahead in this field. Even though it is a flexible career, it is a long-lasting desire of creativity and passion for the art of marketing that takes one up in the ladder. Getting back to the real marketing ecosphere, let’s make a checklist of the activities and the necessary skills required to thrive as one moves up the ladder. Levels of a Marketing Career and Required Skills Level 1: Marketing Executive and Business Development Executive The primary or the starting phase of marketing field is mostly as a marketing and business development executive. Most marketers in this level aim to maximise the profits by matching the consumer requirements with the products and in turn promoting it to the right target audience. In short, they oversee the marketing campaigns to promote the product and services, whether it is digital or offline. They work closely with the market research teams, advertising, sales, and production groups. Some of the key activities performed are conducting market research, analysing the market data, designing and identifying areas and strategies for promotional activities, social media marketing, inbound and outbound marketing, etc. The vastness of the role depends on the size of the business organisation as well as the industry. The main purpose is to grasp the appropriate audience at the right time and bring the optimum return on investment. A strong communication skill plays a vital role at this level since it requires to understand the mindsets of the audience, as well as work with other business teams. An eye for detail along with commercial awareness is definitely necessary beyond the technical know-how about the product. In the present day, business firms are recruiting professionals who possess sound creative writing and oral skills which influence the execution of the original marketing ideas. Of course, one could specialise only in digital marketing and start their career as a social media project coordinator, digital media content curator, digital media analyst, etc. Most of the skills required are the knowledge of digital media platforms and use of SEO in the same.  Though the initial level would apply to perform the basic tasks, the ride is tough as one is new and is tested holistically. Most marketers take usually 2 – 4 years to step up to the second level. Understanding and Conducting a Market Research like Experts Level 2: Marketing Coordinator, Product Specialist, Marketing Analyst and Marketing Manager A mid-level path of the marketing career. As a marketer, it is important to showcase the market knowledge and domain expertise at this stage. Beyond the ability to demonstrate a creative storyboard to market the product, one must be able to handle a team of marketing executive and ensure the business targets are met. The intellect to forecast the problems and be ready to tackle the same is very crucial. The ability to understand the changing needs of the audience, without actually interacting with them is an exceptional skill which most marketers need to demonstrate. One must use the inherent potential to exploit the opportunities and use the resources in the most efficient fashion. As a Marketing Manager, whether it is digital or offline, one must function as a thread that puts a seamless knot between the upper and lower management, as well the consumers and the business.  He or she must be able to analyse the products and services and identify potential markets to expand the business. Create an effective marketing plan, communicate the timely targets to the team, analyse the performance of the executives, supervise and coordinate other marketing activities. The intellect to study and analyse the fluctuations of the market along with sticking to the business vision and organisation’s policies is a knack that comes with experience. The art of storytelling, sales skills, digital media knowledge, data analytics, and of course domain expertise are essential to growing at this level. Besides this, organisational and planning skills, communication skills, coordination, tracking and monitoring the data as well as the team, and the ability to empathise and strike a balance between the personal and professional needs, will aid in the passionate pursuit of the marketing career. It takes 5-8 years to become a marketing expert and oversee a specific team and their activities. The Ultimate Sales and Marketing Resource Guide Level 3:  Marketing Head, Vice-President, Marketing, and President Marketing Typically, it takes almost 12 – 18 years to reach to the core of the Marketing team of the business firm. Marketing specialists in this phase are responsible for the developing and implementing a cohesive marketing plan to upsurge brand awareness, setting current and long-term business and marketing goals for internal teams, designing and reviewing the Marketing department’s budget. One is also entitled to build relationships with media and stakeholders through creative PR strategies, prepare regular reports and presentations on marketing metrics for the CEO and CMO. Forecasting hiring needs for the Marketing department and tracking the competitor’s activities is also a crucial task at this level. This senior management role requires the skill to demonstrate creative and successful marketing campaigns, solid knowledge of the digital marketing effectiveness, strong and inspiring leadership and communication skills, and excellent analytical and project management skills. Above all, one must have the right strategic mindset, with an ability to make difficult decisions and quick solutions at the right time. In short, at this stage of the career, most marketers are the problem-solving specialists and strategic in their initiatives and thoughts. Must-have Skills at Different Stages of a Sales Career Level 4: The Chief Marketing Officer The road to becoming the Chief Marketing Officer of a business firm is challenging as well as risky. The CMO of a firm is a person who has the insight into the audience mindset as well as the business stakeholders proposition.  As a CMO of the organisation, one is essentially steering the company’s marketing strategy through a future vision to the board of directors, embraces data and design, leads innovation and transformation, leverages the new technology, and thinks like a technocrat and content artist. In straight terms, a Sherlock Holmes of the C-suite who knows to handle the business officials to get his thoughts straight into their heads. As a CMO, he or she must be creative as well as analytical. One must certainly own vast knowledge in different disciples such as production, information technology, legal, finance, and other creative aspects of the business. The CMO must be a master of the modern marketing tools and techniques along with the handling social gathering and talking business deals with just a few handshakes through exceptional convincing abilities. Strategy, collaboration, brand building initiatives and business expansion to global markets through exceptional stakeholder relationships are the core areas and skills required to be an effective and inspiring chief marketing officer. Learn Digital Marketing Course online from the World’s top Universities. Earn Masters, Executive PGP, or Advanced Certificate Programs to fast-track your career. Now that we know what the different roles and skill sets are required at each level, let’s see some of the core skills which one must hone and groom forever as it is required at all stages. Integrating Sales and Marketing: Effective Way to Revenue Generation Marketing Skills needed for all Marketing Professionals Customer-centric approach The Art of Storytelling Networking and Collaborative Skills Communication Skills: Oral, Written, Verbal and Non-verbal Listening Skills and Offering Right and Productive Criticisms Data Analytics: Insight to understanding data and metrics Must be a Tech-Savvy with the Knowledge of Sales Process Sound Knowledge of the Changing Digital Marketing Skills and Public Relation Skills Management and Leadership Skills Strategic and Tactical Planning of the Marketing Initiatives Ideas and Thoughts to help you move up in the Ladder Reveal the true and significant insights – Talk the Language of Data Think like a User and a Pro Executive Team Make Products and Services Effective for the Consumer Always have the Knowledge of Commercial Awareness Success or Failure – Document Every Move. Because Everything is a Lesson in Marketing Read and Stay Abreast of the Changes in the Marketing Field It is difficult to set specific career goals for the marketers. So, it is important to balance and enjoy what you are good and the requirements of the profile. This would help run a long mile into the trail. Always ensure you possess a niche and you are a master at it. Get the right experience and learning. In the end, it is the experience that counts more than any degree. The marketing career path has never been structured. With more experience, the roles and responsibilities evolve and get more tactical and strategic. The journey of approximately twenty years has rolled down with a unique path to test the patience and perseverance of the marketer to excel in this highly fluctuating field. Do You Really Need an Offline MBA to Become a Great Manager If you are curious to get into the world of digital marketing, check out upGrad & MICA’s Advanced Certificate in Digital Marketing & Communication. Learn MBA Courses from the World’s top Universities. Earn Masters, Executive PGP, or Advanced Certificate Programs to fast-track your career.
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by Anshuman Agrahari

14 May 2018

Integrating Sales and Marketing: Effective Way to Revenue Generation
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5413
In an ideal world, the sales and marketing teams are meant to be the best friends supporting each other through the thick and thin. Nevertheless, in the real world, sales and marketing are like oil and water. The two business segments don’t get along well and work individually without each other’s consultation. This diverse and disconnected attitude and approach in the road to revenue generation is a recipe for disaster for the business. The reality is, the sales and marketing teams must work together to achieve the common target of revenue generation. ‘Smarketing’ – The Integration of the Sales and Marketing is the key strategy to bring both the business segments on the same page. Go ahead and dig deep into this new concept which is a necessary game plan. Even today, many business organisations have sales and marketing teams working individually and leading to hundreds of escalations and customer problems. Even though both the teams share the common objective of augmenting the business profits, the endless arguments and blame-game continue to be challenging for the business operations. ‘Why should we adopt and implement the integration of sales and marketing?’ – This is the most common question among the business strategists, sales, and marketing professionals. Get MBA Certifications from the World’s top Universities. Earn Masters, Executive PGP, or Advanced Certificate Programs to fast-track your career. What’s Smarketing? Smarketing is a modern business strategy where the two business functions, sales, and marketing, work as a single team, with a common objective. In this methodology of business operations, the journey of marketing continuous beyond the traditional areas such as market penetration, building brand identity and generating lead opportunities. Now, the marketing teams also have to offer assistance to the sales practitioners, and in return, the sales team must offer the necessary assistance to nurture the generated leads.  An enhanced dynamic relationship exists between both the teams and acts coherently in nature. Must-have Skills at Different Stages of a Sales Career In the real business ecosystem, the sales team is dependent on the marketing team for the sales leads and marketing team can improve its value from the field data offered by the sales team. According to a 2011 report by Aberdeen Research, companies that are best-in-class at integrating marketing and sales experienced an average of 32% growth in annual revenue, compared to a 7% decline among their less aligned competitors. Integration means several things: emerging shared definitions, mutual goals, and metrics, and engaging smart technologies and modernised processes. Smarketing Strategy – An Asset to the Business When the marketing team shares the buyer insights and personas with sales, it helps them to more effectively tailor an approach to the lead. The more personalised the sales approach, the more likely the lead is to convert and also become a long-term, loyal customer. If sales team shares the right data and customer details with the marketing team increase the conversion rate. Besides this, the integration of sales and marketing can decrease customer confusion leading to disappointments. This business integration gives a clear picture of the target personas and helps to lead the marketing and sales process flow smoothly. A unified credible message from both the sales and marketing team builds the right credibility and trust of the audience. The simplification of tracking and budgeting the teams increases operational efficiency. In short, this helps the sales and marketing professionals to sail on the same boat and reach the same destination with clearer data and refined goals. Even though the business organisation knows the visible and the vast impact of the integration of the sales and marketing in the business, the cultural attitude and the fear of gossip is one of the biggest barriers in implementing this strategy. The thin line between the sales and marketing team is the biggest wall that separates the business segments and seeds the eternal historic sales-marketing turf war. The business environment continues to view sales and marketing as separate departments of different worlds, interests, and goals. The attitude of discouraging the merger of sales and marketing and to work hand-in-hand is the major block at the heart of the business. Sales 101: An Optimum Approach to Find a Happy Customer The digital world has grown like never before. And it’s time for business organisations, whether it is a startup or an established firm, to build and implement an integrated sales and marketing strategy and put the best foot forward. The Path of Implementing Smarketing The journey of integrating of sales and marketing business segment is not about making the teams talk to each other or making them sit in the same workspace. It is about creating an open and transparent atmosphere between the sales and marketing team with respect to data, strategy, success and failures of both the segments. Ensuring all the data are collated and viewed cohesively for the benefits of both the slices of the business.  This data shall ensure the business builds the right strategy and offers the appropriate solutions with respect to its competitors. Key strategies to promote the implementation of Smarketing: #1 Clarity of Shared Objectives The first step is to get sales and marketing teams in agreement about who the target audiences are and their pain points focused on product solutions. Once buyer personas are determined, marketing and sales team should comply with specific and quantitative descriptions of a lead: How does each team define a qualified lead? Co-creating these characterisations of business terms helps both the teams to tag along with each other and stay sane, eliminating complaints and accusations down the road about “bad” leads. #2 Promoting Open Sales and Marketing Communication Encouraging transparent and consistent communication between the sales and marketing teams is sowing the fertile seeds today, for the fruitful future of the business. The weekly and monthly open discussions of the sales team to share the field feedback to the marketing team will help to understand the current process and the structure of the sales. It could also help them to analyse their strategies which have led to successful potential leads for the business. On the other hand, allow the marketing personnel to participate in the sales calls and take the necessary benefits from the marketing expertise to close the deals. This will help both the teams to view the same picture and also realise that they are fighting the same battle. Building Strong and Steady Professional Relationships #3 Smarketing Team Meetings Plan, organise and schedule a joint Smarketing weekly/monthly/quarterly meetings for both the sales and marketing team together. Appreciate, reward and celebrate the combined efforts of both the team. Such meetings and business structure will help the entire organisation to accept and appreciate the new model of integration of sales and marketing. #4 Let them Stay Accountable Once the collaborative nature of work is set up and the process is streamlined, encourage both the teams to share and discuss the issues and challenges together. Ensure marketing is accountable for quantity and quality of leads and sales is questioned for the accurate leads generated through marketing initiatives. Sales must be vigilant and work steadily to ensure that the marketing initiatives do not go into the gutter. Strengthen the team to discuss their failures and frustrations in a constructive fashion substantiated with appropriate data. These data-driven discussions will help them to stay accountable for their actions and analyse the same for the better business action plan in the future. #5 Developing and Implementing a SMARKETING Agreement The best method to hold both the teams accountable while implementing a SMARKETING process is to develop and deploy a Smarketing Service Level Agreement (SLA). This is an agreement between the sales and the marketing team, where the marketing professionals will agree upon delivering a certain number of leads at a certain quality for the sales team. The sales team is authorised to nurture those specific leads and increase the number of customers for the business. Both the teams can track the SLA and work according to the requirements. This agreement will ensure that the typical blame-game between sales and marketing is diluted with time. A well though SLA’s would generate higher quality leads. Understanding and Conducting a Market Research like Experts #6 Offering Rotation of Jobs Yes! In the real world, this might not be agreeable. But, ensuring both the sales and marketing teams wear each other’s shoes at regular intervals, would help them to acknowledge each other’s problems. This will also help them to understand the process funnel and appreciate the work around them. Reaching an understanding by speaking the same language with both the teams is essential while understanding each other’s glitches and ensuring the customer is the focus. #7 Monitoring and Metrics When we say, ‘integration’, it is not a one-time procedure. It is a continuous ongoing process until the existence of the business. A constant monitoring and tracking of the performance of the marketing initiatives and sales strategies with shared and accurate metrics and data are essential for the successful integration of the smarketing. A teamwork with different ideas and collaborative efforts is vital. While there might be very few organisations that are successful in implementing and reaping benefits through this model, market studies have revealed that this is the way to go. A consistent process along with uniform and shared strategy is the way forward for the business to flourish. A business firm can work for keeping, marketing and sales team separately up to certain level. In order to scale up and reach the next mark of success and retain the victory, a technology-enabled smarketing model is a way to take a big breakthrough in the business. Role of technology in Smarketing: In order to align the sales and marketing team and have the same wavelength, both the teams must attend the business meetings regularly and have a shared content creation process in place and coordinate the campaigns with each other. The new technologies like Jira, Slack, and SharePoint aid in the collaboration of these functions. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and marketing software such as Marketo, HubSpot, MailChimp, Salesforce, etc., will help to develop and deploy a unified, explicit and clear smarketing strategy. Integrated platforms like Salesforce, LeadSquared, HubSpot, Infusionsoft, etc., are one-stop virtual space for many sales and marketing activities. These tools are the sources to support to qualify leads built on demographics and behavioural data and inputs from the sales team. This will also ensure optimising the productivity of the teams and identify their most quality lead at a glance. The integration of sales and marketing software’s and bringing them into single platform would benefit both the sides and improve the results based on data. It will also help to ensure that the customer remains the focus always. This transparent process validated by data will keep both the teams on track. The Ultimate Sales & Marketing Resource Guide Creating a happy, open, friendly and honest environment for the team members is an important task of the business leads and managers to achieve the business goals. Smarketing is a way to build an open and trustworthy people-friendly ecosystem for the sales and marketing professionals. It is meant to offer the most creative ideas and successful sales strategies and scale up the business at every stage. A complementary fashion of working style which would enable the professionals to cater to the target audience efficiently and effectively. Whatever said and done, Customer is the King and they are the fuel for every business to exist. If you want to learn more about marketing and entrepreneurship, Liverpool Business School & upGrad offers Master of Business Administration (MBA) Liverpool Business School which helps you to transform your career. The program provides 1-on-1 mentorship from industry leaders, 1-week immersion program at University campus, dual credentials (MBA from LBS & PGPM from IMT), network with peers at offline basecamps and more.
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by Anshuman Agrahari

09 May 2018

Building Strong and Steady Professional Relationships – Tactics, Tools & Techniques
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            A healthy professional relationship is like the best nourishment to a famished business. Do you have it in your DNA to get the right handshakes at the first instinct? If not, here is what you got to do. Keep reading and learn the importance of the art of building and nurturing professional relationships. This is an essential skill to own if you are a sales or a business development professional. As per the Market Agency Growth Report 2018, 35% of firms scuffle to find workforces who are the right fit for the job and 12% of business organisations feel one of their biggest challenges is employee retention. In India, there are millions of professionals who pass with flying colours every year. Yet there is a constant struggle to get the right jobs and ideal human resources for the profile. Consequently, this indicates a visible gap between the campus learnings and the requirements of the field. Learning the technical aspect is just one side of the coin. Acquiring the appropriate soft skills that are indispensable in the daily working environment is also must. Most professionals lack these soft skills which could bridge the gap and sow the right seeds for a successful professional career. One of the most important soft skill is ‘relationship building’ which comes with continuous practice and experience. Go ahead and learn more about the true essence of building healthy professional relationships. Understanding and Conducting a Market Research like Experts Big or small, every business organisation and business development professional, must know that no business can flourish without relationships. Most often budding professionals and entrepreneurs get caught up in the minute details of building effective products and services and ignore the efforts to build relationships with customers, clients, stakeholders, employees. A robust and strong relationship will help to build the brand loyalty of the customers and vendors who would be the lifeline in times of crisis. An ideal way to share struggles and success. Just like personal relationships, professional relationships are mutually beneficial of sharing and supporting. Essential Soft Skills for Relationship Building For any sales or business professional to succeed in building relationships, one must possess the domain expertise as well the following soft skills: Exceptional Communication and Interpersonal Skills A great sales and business development professional must own exceptional communication and interpersonal skills. These skills are essential in order to be assertive, communicate, and speak with all the customers, internal and external stakeholders. A consistent way of building and nurturing communication skills in enhancing professional relationships would lead to better business profits. Get MBA Certifications from the World’s top Universities. Earn Masters, Executive PGP, or Advanced Certificate Programs to fast-track your career. Phenomenal Persuasion and Negotiation Skills One must be tactful and persuasive as and when necessary. At times one has to demonstrate the negotiation skills to bring in the new business of mutual benefits and offer convincing solutions to the problems. In order to do this, at times one must go beyond offering effective solutions and win the trust of the customers and stakeholders. Compelling Collaborative Skills No business runs by a single person. It’s never a single showmanship. Every business function involves multiple business affiliations and runs through the collaborative efforts of several internal and external human resources. Building and managing all the relationships, navigate through the corporate grapevine and also augment the return on investment would need consistent and cohesive collaborative skills. Reinforcing Research and Strategic Skills Every business development professional whether it is sales or marketing must possess substantial and reinforcing research skills to analyse the changing needs and problems of the target audience. Knowing the consumers better would influence the designing of the business strategies and groom the strategic skills. This would aid the business to always stay ahead of the competitors and also stay abreast in offering the right solutions to the consumers, leading to harmonious relationships. Profound Knowledge of Business Intelligence Yes! Business intelligence is a very necessary skill to ensure one knows what they are selling and to whom. Get to know the products and services in detail. Dig deep into the marketing and gain knowledge about the competitors, changing business needs, and industry standards. One must showcase the necessary knowledge to ensure business relationships are fed with the right data at the right time. Demonstrating these soft skills will help a sales and business development professional to sow the fertile seeds for a successful business relationship. Must-have Skills at Different Stages of a Sales Career Approaches to Strengthen Professional Relationships #1 High Curiosity Quotient Professionals who are highly curious are considered to handle diverse situations, complexity and ambiguity. Such people offer simple and straightforward solutions for complex business problems. The compound and competitive business landscape emphasise the importance of this attitude and approach. Stay curious and stay ahead to build and maintain strong relationships. #2 Appreciate the Consumer Needs and Behaviour With the vast impact of technology and smartphones, consumers are more aware and educated than ever before. There is zero control of information. Business development executives and sales professionals must build strategies that help to appreciate the consumers need and behaviour, and also gain the trust of the audience. #3 Seeking Right Questions and Active Listening Ask the right questions with utmost professionalism. Always listen actively with the intent to understand the issues of the consumers and the business. Listening carefully and heeding to the problems would help one to offer the right value-add to the business. #4 Set Realistic Goals and Action Plans Always set SMART goals that are useful and meaningful for both the clients and business. An elaborate plan gives clarity of the problem and ensures the proper execution of the solution. This also depicts the leadership skills of the professionals by setting the realistic expectations for the customers, clients and the teams working on the same. #5 Capability to Nurture the Brand The process of building the brand involves creating a unique value proposition in the market along with generating business leads. One must possess the ability to nurture the brand and be a value-add to the business. All professionals have the attitude of, ‘What they could add to the business and the consumer’s journey with the brand’. #6 Must Be Proactive Every sales and business development professional must be proactive to find solutions to the problems of the customers and the business. Always forecast the problems and offer preventive measures and showcase effective risk management. #7 Turn Mistakes into Opportunities Mistakes are the stepping stones to success. Never feel shy to admit and accept your mistakes. A simple and humble apology can lead to long-lasting relationships. Ensure every mistake turns into an opportunity to enhance the relationship rather than a setback for business. #8 Personalise the Relationships Good or bad, always accept and share an acknowledgement. Send and share a thank you message to all the clients and customers. Have face-to-face interactions whenever necessary and possible. Such personalisation adds the right warmth to expand the relationship. #9 Always Encourage Feedback Any honest and open relationship must encourage feedback. Take the criticisms and feedback from the clients and customers in the constructive fashion. If you know you are right, stay strong with facts. #10 Always Have Conversations Every customer feels that when business interacts with them, it is always a sales pitch. A business development executive must get rid of that image and make the relationship casual. Even though it is a sales pitch, one must always put the customer in the first place and before driving them to make a purchase. Be genuine and be patient. It demonstrates a great leadership skill and makes you a role model for young professionals. The Emerging Technologies to Watch for 2018–2020 Tools to Refine and Nurture the Professional Relationships In the real world, money is not the true essence of life. Money cannot buy or build the business. It is the beauty of relationships that promote the business. Long-lasting and powerful relationships take it course of time and require lots of investment of time and customer-centric initiatives. Here are some the common tools used by business development professionals to refine and nurture the professional relationships. #1 Click Meeting Click Meeting is a tool to schedule and set up sales meetings and calls quickly without any worry.  The tool assimilates with several apps such as YouTube, Google Calendar, etc. The tool has a dashboard which offers analytics about the meetings which are handy for sales and business development professionals. #2 Rapportive Gather the details of the contacts in your inbox through Rapportive. They connect through LinkedIn profile contact information and offer the latest details for the business needs. Offering the personalised data, this helps to give a personal touch to the business communications. #3 Charlie App An ideal tool to dig deep into the business contacts and know more about them. Charlie App gives a detailed picture of the people with whom you would have interactions. From the contact information about the consumers and business vendors, their background data and latest social media interactions, everything in just one tool. #4 Intercom Use Intercom chats tool to convert the website visitors into potential consumers. It is the right way to initiate the communication and build a long-lasting relationship with them. The personalise interactions make the customer feel special and valued. #5 Salesmate Get the past and present information about the interactions with the consumer using Salesmate tool. The manual work of entering the data can be eliminated and generate automatic data about the customer’s lists and data through the dashboard reports. The Network Nurturing and Timely Rewarding of Loyal Relationships is the Key to Building and Nurturing Professional Relationships. Key Mistakes that Most Professionals Make A constant look for minor details and ignoring the core purpose of the business and customer collaboration. Not believing the products and services that one sells. If you don’t believe, how will the customers believe the product? Lack of planning and organisational skills. A meticulous and methodical approach to build sustainable relationships is vital. Lack of Persistence and perseverance to invest time and efforts to nurture the business contacts. Avoiding or ignoring the actual problems in the relationship. Thinking transactionally. Tit-for-tat attitude leads to failure of relationships. Not doing the homework, overpromising and inability to establish timely delivery. Lack of follow up with the fresh contacts and generating new leads. Lack of Consistency in Customer Relationship Management. More Emphasis on Selling, rather than Helping the Consumers. Popular Books to Gain In-Depth Knowledge Give and Take by Adam Grant Top of Mind by John Hall Captivate by Vanessa Van Edwards Giftology by John Ruhlin The Art of People by Dave Kerpen Leading Through the Turn by Elise Mitchell Self-Employed by Joel Comm and John Rampton Ego Is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday Relationship Economics: Transform Your Most Valuable Business Contacts Into Personal and Professional Success by David Nour Getting Naked: A Business Fable about Shedding the Three Fears That Sabotage Client Loyalty –  by Patrick Lencioni Whether it is a startup or an established business organisation, healthy relationships are the lifeline for a sustainable business growth. Strong, long-lasting, and mutually beneficial relationships are the foundation of a successful business.  A satisfied client is a sign of positive future prospects of the business. Sales 101: An Optimum Approach to Find a Happy Customer We hope this checklist and the ultimate guide to develop and hone the art of building and nurturing relationships is the perfect place to kick-start your learning and understanding of professional relationships. If you are yet to start your journey, it’s time to go ahead and begin the roller-coaster ride of professional relationships. If you want to learn more about marketing and entrepreneurship, Liverpool Business School & upGrad offers Master of Business Administration (MBA) Liverpool Business School which helps you to transform your career. The program provides 1-on-1 mentorship from industry leaders, 1-week immersion program at University campus, dual credentials (MBA from LBS & PGPM from IMT), network with peers at offline basecamps and more.
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by Anshuman Agrahari

03 May 2018

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