4 Marketing Tips to Graduate Your Brand to the Next Level

Millions of students will turn tassels and throw graduation caps in the air this spring. Though it may have been a while since you walked across the stage, you likely haven’t stopped learning in your career — and there’s plenty to learn and keep up within the ever-changing world of marketing. Social media burst onto the scene nearly two decades ago and has evolved into a juggernaut, and now Artificial Intelligence is the new industry must-have. Email marketing may not be a shiny new toy, but it’s still a key cog for many brands’ seeking to build relationships and drive conversions. And it has continued to evolve in the age of AI. Content, including subject lines and email bodies, must be personalized to engage an audience and reach objectives. In other words, the marketing industry has graduated to the next level, and you can too. These marketing tips will have you at the head of the class. 

Ditch Black Box Optimizers 

Black box tools, such as Facebook insights, don’t paint the entire picture of why one ad was performed better than another. Facebook pushes out the best performing ad in a set without any insights into why it won. Perhaps if you paired a different headline with that killer image, the ad would have done even better. To truly get a holistic view of your Facebook marketing efforts, it’s important to test each creative with each headline. Yes, really. That can be time-consuming, but AI technologies do the dirty work for you by optimizing the combination of words, phrases, emotions and images that best engage a brand’s audience.    

Get Personal...

Personalization isn’t just a marketing tip or best practice — it’s expected. If you lived in Manhattan, what product would you be more interested in purchasing from a home and garden shop: A gardening set for that backyard you don’t have, or a super-soft throw blanket that will keep you warm when it snows? But it’s more than just putting the right products in front of someone. Marketers need to be able to speak to people the way they want to be spoken to, and much of that depends on their emotions. Think about it: Would you talk to a friend who just adopted a puppy the same way you talked to him hours before a big job interview? Probably not. The same is true in marketing. Emotion in an email subject line contributes to more than 60% of opens, according to Persado research.  

...But Not Too Personal

There’s such a thing as too much of a good thing when it comes to personalization. Go too far and you risk creating unnecessary work for yourself and creeping people out — and who needs either of those? A retail brand with stores all over the world doesn’t need to use location-specific creative for every city its in. In a recent blog post for Persado Insights about personalization and paid media, Global Solutions Consultant for Paid Media Kirill Gil wrote, 

“When brands do this, it’s hard to tell if all the resources needed to generate hundreds of ads are worth it because it becomes so granular. This, in turn, kills the whole purpose of personalization since it renders a brand unable to tell whether inclusion of the individual’s elite status, qualifying bonus offer and call out of the limited time deal are actually better than a generic message in driving conversions. As a result, everyone is busy updating the hundreds of personalized messages, but the company has no quantifiable data to understand the associated ROI.”

Again, who wants that? 

To figure out whether hyper-personalization is worth it, Gil suggested testing location-specific creative on about 10 cities to see if it truly moves the needle. 

Going even further, it’s not necessarily marketing best practice to hyper-segment to each individual. If you’re a realtor who wants people in your territory to call you when their houses are on the market, don’t target everyone in town by using a photo of their specific home and home’s value in a Facebook ad. It’s creepy. (This is a real-life example Gil pointed to in the aforementioned blog post).

Seal the Deal With the Best CTA

Calls to action can contribute up to 60% of a person’s click thru on an email or website. That makes it a rather important part of the consumer experience — and your shot at a conversion. The CTA needs to be visible, boast a clear benefit and be more creative than the ones almost everyone else is using (“Read/Learn More” and “Get Started” to name a few).