HubSpot InBound Certified

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

How to Target Specific Individuals using Digital Channels?

Well, this post wasn't planned at all. A call from work on same topic encouraged me to write a blog post on this. It may or may not be often that businesses around the world feel this need of targeting only specific individuals for promotions. I work for a B2B company and for us, it's almost essential to be very frugal in our spends and ensure whatever little we spend, they are very focused and restricted to our target set of audience only.

There're various ways (paid and non-paid) which allows advertisers to target either set of individuals or audience who exhibits similar characteristics. Please note that advertising methods on all channels require a customer's opt-in which means if someone has not opted in to receive email newsletters or facebook ads then they will not receive any of your promotional messages on respective channels. However, if they're opt-in individuals then you may send promotional ads to them digitally from following ways:

If you know the email ids of your target audience then the best possible way is to send them an email with compelling & attractive headline. You may devise a strategy to nurture your audience with series of emails scheduled on a timely basis. Email marketing is still considered to be the best & cheapest way to reach out to your target audience and evoke response or influence conversions.

Engage with them on LinkedIn via InMails. With InMails 2.0, dynamic delivery allows high open rates and increased probability of conversions/ engagement. Individuals who wish to send InMails to target individuals may purchase InMails credits themselves and send InMails instantly.
A Custom audience list can be created in Google Adwords, Facebook & Twitter by uploading a list of target email addresses (when in doubt, use both personal & professional emails). The audience can then be segmented & targeted digitally on respective channels. Advertisers can also leverage similar audience feature on these platforms that allow them to reach out to individuals who’re similar to their target contacts.

If you and your target audience are following each other on Twitter & Facebook then you may write a tweet & post respectively, mentioning their handles or tagging them on the post. A notification will go to them and they can read the content they’re tagged on and may engage with you directly over there on respective platforms.
Adroll has a feature of CRM re-targeting which works similar to custom audiences in Google, Facebook & Twitter. The advertiser needs to upload a list of email ids/ directly import from CRM in the Adroll dashboard and the tool will then show them banner ads/ facebook/ twitter ads to these audience. Adroll can also target similar audiences who exhibits characteristics similar to your target audience.

Identify groups related to your service/ expertise and start a topic/ discussion. Before doing this, make sure that their target audience is a part of that group. If you’ve your own group/ community to which your target audience has already subscribed for then you may engage with them directly over there or they can receive content/topic in regular email newsletters.

Hope you'll find this info useful. 

Saturday, 26 September 2015


Remarketing is a form of online advertisement that enables advertisers to show ads on various digital channels (Web, Social etc.) to users who have already visited their website.


(Remarketing process)

A remarketing campaign execution starts with an analysis of the remarketing capabilities of various service providers (Adroll, LinkedIn Lead Accelerator, Google remarketing etc.). B2B remarketing campaign planning and execution broadly include following steps:

STEP 1: The primary step is to analyze website analytics including website conversion rate, bounce rate, average time on page etc.

STEP 2: Audience is then segmented primarily on the basis of the type of the content browsed by them. Remarketing lists should be created on the basis of parameters like pages viewed, source/medium, geography etc. With LinkedIn Lead Accelerator, audience can also be segmented on the basis of Industry they belong to.

STEP 3: In addition to business pages, a separate remarketing list should also be created for all home page & lead form abandoners. It is important to generate desire to bring them back to the corporate website so that they can browse pages or fill up the lead form.

STEP 4: The next step is to create tailored ads for each remarketing lists and serve remarketing ads on various platforms such web/ content network, LinkedIn sponsored updates, Facebook newsfeed, Facebook right hand column ads and on Twitter as promoted tweets 

STEP 5: The campaign is set up in the dashboards of various remarketing service providers and optimized on timely basis. Campaign reports must be analyzed for optimizations.

(Steps involved in a B2B remarketing process)

The objectives of doing a remarketing campaign are:
a. Lower the cost per lead,
b. Bring quality audience (& new audience in case of targeting similar audience) to your website again where you can show them more relevant offer
c. Nurture your own audience in a controlled way over a long period of time with different messages.

Remarketing could be very annoying to your users. Marketers need to be very careful of not spamming their audience with same messaging everyday. Hence, do not be very persuasive in your banner or ad copy content, Schedule campaign wisely and optimize your remarketing campaigns on timely basis.

Friday, 25 September 2015

Apple iOS 9 Ad-Blocking: What it is and How will it affect Publishers?

Safari in iOS 9 will come with a content blocker, that can stop images, scripts and other content from loading in the devices. It will not only block advertisements, cookies and pop-ups but will also disable tracking scripts and malware domains. Acc. to September 2014 report from PageFair and Adobe - the number of ad-block users around 200 million worldwide. The increase is even more pronounced on the Mac, with the number of Safari users running ad blocking extensions rising 71 percent to 9 million.

There are a number of benefits for the user with content blocking:
a. User privacy protection, 
b. Reduce data usage
c. Preserve up to 20% of the battery life
d. Improves page load time. 
e. The new iOS 9 web view, which can be used in many third-party apps, like Twitter and Facebook, would make external links faster to load. 

NOTE: Safari in iOS 9 will, however include a feature that lets you long-press on the reload button to load the site again without the content blocker running.

Reports say - The change will costs publishers more than $20 billion per year. Content blocking in iOS 9 is going to screw up way more than just ads. These new applications, which are mostly used to block ads, block JavaScript code from loading on websites based on a list that specifies which sources are disallowed. Advertisers may not be able to use tools such Google Analytics (for website analytics), Optimizely (A/B Testing tool for websites), Remarketing advertisements etc. to their fullest potential.

The publishers will likely lean toward different types of advertisements that aren’t as easily stopped – like native ads, IP based targeting ads etc. 

Publishers will also be driven to Apple’s forthcoming News app arriving in iOS 9, where Apple can generate revenue via its own advertising system, iAd.  

A Nieman Lab report noted that Apple’s News app will rely on iAd, an OS-level ad platform that can’t be vanquished or bypassed with ad-block software. Publishers who see declining mobile ad revenue might be persuaded to sign on with News, where Apple reportedly could take a 30 percent cut of ads that iAd sells on behalf of the publisher.

(the views are crowd-sourced from various websites and is solely for information purpose only)

Saturday, 20 June 2015

TEDx | Vineet Nayar | Employees First, Customers Second

Employees First, Customers second. Really?

What do you first make out from this headline? Isn't it insane? Well it's not. 

For those who are aware of this phrase would instantly think of "Vineet Nayar" ex-CEO of HCL Technologies

Vineet Nayar always advocate businesses to put Employees first. The rationale is simple, if you put your employees first, employees would by default put "Customer first". A simple philosophy yet most powerful for businesses around the world.

The philosophy not only transformed HCL by tripling its revenue to $4.2 Billion dollars in 5 years but also motivated many like me.

Employees First, Customers Second case study was taught at Harvards. You can buy the case study here. You can also buy the book here.

I watched his recent thoughtful, inspiring and motivating speech at TEDx Aix.

You must definitely spare your 18 minutes, it will provide you learning of lifetime. Watch the man in action here: