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Friday, 29 December 2017

5 Marketing Resolutions to Start the New Year Right


Its that time of year again, you're here probably because you are looking for new year resolutions for your marketing campaigns that you'd like to follow through on.

Take a second to think about what you've accomplished throughout this year and what you are going to resolve to accomplish this coming new year. Maybe you've thought of ways to better manage your time or come up with fun ideas for team outings.

1. Focus on mobile.


Mobile is huge period. This shouldn't be an option for Malaysian businesses anymore it should be a point of focus that is serious for businesses to consider.

2. Make your website responsive.


This shouldn't even be a topic of consideration, but with many Malaysian websites still old and not updated it is time that you consider updating your website and not leaving it untouched since the mid 90's

3. Adjust your social and email strategies to work with SMS


Social and the leverage of influencers are the buzz at the moment, be wise with your selection and choose one to prioritize on. The age of social is upon every business and it is going to stay. Keep up or lose out.

4. Take a look at your buyer personas.


All the resolutions in the world would not do you any good if you have not narrowed down your list of potential buyers. You can send them mix messages or messages that do not relate to them at all. Look through how you ca re-engage with your list and better engage with them.

5. Consider a homepage revamp.


Although you might have already put in a great deal of time, effort, and resources to making a top-tier homepage, a change in buyer persona or a change in trend could mean it is time for a facelift. The Internet is constantly evolving and so are your buyers. Keep up with them buy making sure that relevant content is consistently communicated to them.


Tuesday, 26 December 2017

5 Questions to Ask Before Working With a Micro-Influencer


Asking for recommendations continue to evolve, and even in the realm of SMS this continues to innovate and grow.

Once upon a time we may have asked a neighbor to recommend a product or service, 47% of millennials now turn to social media for recommendations and reviews before deciding on a purchase.

However, these consumers aren't always going to the social media accounts of major brands. Most of the time, they are visiting the profiles of a specific group of personalities that they relate to or follow. These personalities are "Influencers".

As discussed previously here, SMS marketing is an important piece of your marketing channel that can drive you great click through rates and open rates, and Influencers can drive social legitimacy.

Also consider this: Close to 40% of Twitter users alone have made a purchase as a result of the use of influencer marketing -- combine this with your SMS marketing campaign and the result is limitless.

Many of us when we think of influencers, you might be thinking of A-list personalities and celebrities. Take Yumi Wong, for example, who helped catapult the brand LANCASTER.


There is a good chance that celebrities might significantly grow your sale and help you to achieve your marketing targets, but let's face it: not every brand can afford their price tags. It's reported that Kylie Jenner gets $400,000 for a single promotional Instagram post. That's ~RM1,600,000 per post.

Why us Micro-Influencers?


Micro influencers might seem to be counter intuitive, it might make sense to leverage on an influencer with a large reach compared to those with only a few thousand.

This isn't necessary.

A study done by Markerly, puts this evidence to the sword as it the converse relationship was found between the number of followers against the level of engagement.

"Conclusion: With a large number of followers engagement rate actually decreases."




Finding the right Micro-influencer for your business


Wit so many micro-influencers, it's no surprise that a lot of marketers highlight that finding the right one as their biggest challenge.

Here are 5 questions you'll need to answer very carefully


1. What are your goals?


The first thing as with most things to consider. What are you trying to achieve? Do you want to generate more leads then look for micro-influencers that frequently host contests or giveaways on their social media accounts.

2. Who are the micro-influencer's followers?


Look at the followers as these will be the list of people you want to reach, and look at how well they align with your brands buyer personas. Some things you can consider are:

Where are the majority of the micro-influencers's geographically located?
Are they mostly male or female?
Which type of posts resonates with them the most?

3. What kind of content does the micro-influencer produce?


Micro-influencers create their posts based on their own brand and image and you will want to compare this against the image you want them to associate with your brand. It's important to make sure that this is aligned. 

4. Are they already working with your competitors?


How did the audience respond to the post? Was there anything mentioned by the micro-influencer about your competitors' products that you can use to your advantage or avoid?

5. How many platforms to they use?


Although a bulk of influencers are on Instagram, there are many of them that are equally active on their own blogs and other social media channels. This is good for your as the more platforms a micro-influencer can use to promote your content, the better it is for you.

Use influencers to drive better legitimacy for your SMS marketing campaign. Implement your SMS marketing campaign now with EVERWORKS affordable, and professional service.

Monday, 25 December 2017

5 Brilliant Holiday Marketing Campaigns


Every year, without warning holiday marketing campaigns are everywhere the floodgates open and countless businesses rush to cash in on the holiday spending frenzy. There are numerous holiday emails, social media posts, and TV ads -- everyone is rushing to get a piece of the pie.

It might seem like during the holidays the marketing gets out of control, but some brands actually do it very, very, very well.

They don't just chase typical promotional campaigns, but they strive to create campaigns that actually delight customers. This actually helps the brands to stand out amongst the holiday "noise". They evoke emotion and connect people with their loved ones.

Here are 5 of our favorites:


1. Coca Cola


A post shared by Coca-Cola Canada (@cocacola_ca) on


2. Hotel Tonight



3. Dollar Shave Club


A post shared by Dollar Shave Club (@dollarshaveclub) on


4. Edeka




5. John Lewis




Merry Christmas from us at EVERWORKS. Hopefully this inspires you to create more creative SMS Marketing campaigns!


Wednesday, 13 December 2017

7 Examples that Drive Conversion through SMS


SMS is a neglected marketing channel that should take more prominence in your marketing pie and there's evidence too with a 99% open rate and a 36% click through rate it's hard to see why not.

There are other marketing channels that are effective, but there are few that boasts the numbers that SMS delivers. There's a hidden gem that most people miss out on the notification messages that you send out when confirming orders or requests from customers.

As discussed previously, its important to establish authentic relationships with people and only when they are willing to receive notifications from your brand should you ever approach them. It's the established trust that gives you permission to build an engaging conversation with your customer. While we are all busy with building new lists it's common for us to forget about nurturing the lists that we've spent so much effort acquiring.

Delivered SMSes to willing brand participants is often overlooked and there's a big opportunity for you to take advantage of here. But how? Through short snippets that pique interest to discover value add-ons that is specially on offer to them.

7 Examples that Drive Conversion through SMS


1) Promote and upcoming event or conference


Having a simple call-to-action in your SMS can drive more registrations, increases live stream attendances, and improve post event follow ups.

We all know how much time and effort is put into setting up for an event, why not reach out to already interested people through SMS.

2) Share a new Ebook or Industry Report


The easiest way to provide consistent and meaningful value to your customers is to pass along helpful content. Any interaction that you may have with your customer is an opportunity to do this -- plus sharing thought leadership content builds trust and establishes credibility.

3) Share a Case Study


To keep customers engaged in your pipeline, share a case study, specific use case or testimonial and feature a customer the prospect can relate to or identify as a credible brand.

4) Drive more registrations to your next event


Need more attendees? Include a subtle call-to-action is an easy way to get the word out.

5) Let customers know about product offerings or discounts


Chances are you already send a lot of notification SMSs out and this is a great way to include a short snipper promoting any offerings or discounts that you may have.

6) Convert leads to Opportunities


Personalisation is important, and this can't be emphasized enough. People who sign up to your lists are likely to be thirsty for more information. Include a CTA for the "next step" and this could greatly improve your chances at converting your leads.

7) Include a video link to spice it up


We know that SMS has superb open rates and click through rates, why not capitalize on this. Typing words sometimes doesn't just cut it, the message isn't fully interpreted. It's tough to establish a real human connection. Best way to do this, try video. In our experience video produces the highest engagement rate by far.

SMS should be your next trick up your sleeve


Continue to strive for personalized and relevant content, as this would work better chances for your sales efforts. Make sure you target the right audience too and this would lead to better outcomes for your team. Create your own SMS campaign today.

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

5 Things to Start, Stop, and Keep Doing With Your SMS Marketing


If you're reading this it's likely you're trying to figure out a way to improve on your current SMS Marketing tactics.

SMS Marketing is a powerful tool as we've discussed about in previous posts where we've explored;



covering some of key topics on why we believe SMS Marketing is something you should seriously consider. Let's get straight into this:

How to improve your SMS Marketing 


1. Send SMS to lists that want to hear from you


If you have SMS lists that have low rates of engagement activity, stop sending more SMS to them. Every time you send to a list with low rates of engagement, it not just hurts your budgets, but also your reputation for connecting with your customers.

2. Have a goal for for each SMS before you press send


You should always have a goal in mind for every marketing effort you do. If you do not have a clear goal in mind, your customers receiving your SMS won't either. Some examples of these goals can be filling up a form for gated content, or redeeming a voucher code to be used in your store.

3. Personalise and test your SMS


SMS personalisation really works. When it comes to personalisation its best to stick to the basics such as recipient names. You don't want to come across as creepy, so it's best to leave it at that.

4. Experiment by sending SMS out on different days of the week

Stop sending SMS on Wednesdays. Just stop. Tuesday all the way through to Thursdays are the most popular days for sending out SMS but they're over saturated and might be overwhelming your subscribers. If you want your SMS to be opened try on different days like Monday or Fridays. You can also try on Saturdays, and make sure you include a call to action - there's a tendency here for consumers to react.

5. Engage with contacts that have engaged not uploaded lists


When someone willingly provides their information, the engagement is likely to be higher - the key here is willing. That's because they are willing or interested to hear from you, and they've told you so by engaging with your opt-in request. We've got an idea that would help to drive better engagement reach that might help with your SMS list building efforts through influencer engagement.

Never buy SMS lists, you're only hurting your reputation - your hard earned credibility will be hurt by doing this, and it is plain annoying to receive messages that don't matter to you. Here's an example: what if there's a guy that's interested in sports attire, but you end up sending claimable discount vouchers through SMS to him for the new red hot lipstick. There's a disconnection when you purchase lists, and the likelihood for backlash is greater. Why risk it?

SMS has strong merits, and it should be an avenue for you to consider to diversify your marketing channel participation. Having a targeted campaign enables you to direct your marketing campaigns to your customers immediately. Learn more about how we can help you with SMS. If you'd like to run through some ideas with us, just get in touch with us.

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

5 Influencer Marketing Campaigns To Get You Started with SMS Marketing


What's the difference between influencer marketing and the traditional celebrity spokesperson marketing?

Influencers are specialists in their respective niches, have a high level of trust with their network and establish a two way communication with their followers. Influencer marketing is a strategy to tap into an existing community of engaged followers. This means that these people have influence over an audience that you might be trying to reach - this might prove to be valuable to your marketing efforts.

The line is blurred with Influencer Marketing when it comes to celebrity endorsements. There is a tendency for fans to rely on a well researched recommendation compared to signed marketing contracts. If having a selective niche audience is what your brand needs, engaging with influencers with niche specialities is often better compared to celebrity endorsements that may cover a broad range of different sponsored products and industries. Celebrity endorsements are great, but it's often less about fan engagement and more about attaching a person's fame and name recognition to a particular brand.

Use influencers to drive list building activities. Although, giveaways and other perks are great, but use your campaign to also build rapport with your audience - this is a great way to build credible engagement with your fans and grow legitimacy with easy collaboration with reputable influencers.

1. Old Navy


Check out Old Navy's approach to implementing influencer marketing - they got in touch with Meghan Rienks to do a series of promotional posts for them on their social accounts.


2. Natta Cosme


Natta Cosme got in touch with woonsingg a local influencer to carry out their influencer marketing.

A post shared by ⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀ ⠀w o o n s i n g g 👾 (@woonsingg) on

3. SKII Malaysia


SKII Malaysia engaged with Sue Lynn Tiong popularly known as Bangsar Babe for their on-ground event. They drove digital engagement with Sue Lynn posting on her Instagram driving awareness for their campaign.


4. The Starling Mall


The Starling Mall organised a campaign #mystarlingtrails and to raise awareness about this they engaged with Tzia an influencer with a giveaway.


5. Cetaphil Malaysia


Cetaphil Malaysia is raising awareness of their product through the use of influencer marketing. Engaging with Jane Chuck they get reach to 517k+ of her followers and the trust that they have in her recommendations.


Key takeaways


Don't limit your campaigns to the use of usual advertising channels only. It is one dimensional and does not encourage your fans to respond. Deliver rapport along with your awareness campaign as you will create greater credibility with your following.

Grow your list and boost it with influencer marketing to expand your reach to fans that want to interact and share their experiences with you!


You can learn more about SMS Marketing and how it is a direct channel tool that will help you with your marketing efforts in our blog post here. Also if you're interested to find out more about SMS Marketing and how we can help you, please visit our website for more information.

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

How To Tell If Your SMS Marketing Campaign Converts?


According to the Malaysian Digital Association, Malaysia has 44 million+ mobile subscribers. That's a whopping 1.4x the total population of Malaysia. This is huge for businesses in Malaysia and should be an ideal place to reach and engage with new and existing audiences.

There's an argument though that Facebook is all the hype with 1.28 billion active users every day it seems to be a no brainer for marketers to focus their efforts here. Hold on right there, that's the total number of active users a day, globally. How does Malaysia fair? According to Facebook themselves as reported by soyacincau.com about 80% of Malaysians that have access to the Internet are on Facebook, that's about 18 million people.

From this perspective SMS Marketing seems to be the more attractive option. However, this article isn't written with the purpose to discuss about the differences between SMS Marketing and Facebook. Rather how to measure whether the campaign you're running through SMS is actually worth it for your business. Let's get right into it.

How do you begin measuring SMS Marketing ROI?



You might be asking, why calculate your SMS ROI? You need to know which channels are working best for you and how much return you're getting to know where to spend your marketing dollars for your future SMS Campaigns.

Here's an example scenario. It usually costs your company around RM100 to acquire a customer. You just got to know about SMS Marketing and want to test it out by trying an SMS Marketing campaign to generate new customers with a budget of RM1,000. You run this campaign and notice that it generates you 11 new customers. Was it worth it?

To find out if your campaign is actually worth it or not is pretty simple. Just follow a simple mathematical formula and you're good to go. Take the amount you spent (cost) and divide it with your returns.

From the example scenario above you take the RM1,000 budget that you have as the amount you have spent (cost) and divide it with the number of customers it has brought back in (returns). 11 new customers. That makes for an approximate of RM90 per acquired customer.

Since you know that the typical cost it takes to acquire a customer (RM100) with the new campaign you have decided to run you realise that it only costs you RM90 to acquire a new customer. Knowing this allows you to understand that you're SMS Marketing Campaign is performing fairly well against the usual customer acquisition cost you have previously been running.


via GIPHY

With this, you should be well on your way to becoming an expert on measuring your customer acquisition costs and using it as a benchmark to tell if your SMS Marketing campaign was actually worth it or not.

If you'd like to discuss more about SMS Marketing and how we can help you with your campaign, do get in touch with us here or if you'd like to learn more about the services we have on offer please visit our website.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

3 Signs you are sending creepy SMS Messages


We have a tendency to want to flatter our prospects, and to deliver a high level of personalisation so that they can resonate with you. Take caution though on going too personal, it should be kept simple so that you do not come across as creepy. Else your customers will start to wonder how you've managed to get such detailed -private- information about them. This isn't good to do. Normally people don't trust flattery from strangers.

3 Creepy SMS Habits to Drop


1) You know too much about them


With today's technologies and tools it makes it really easy to learn a lot about a person.

Pro tip: Embrace what you don't know and try seeming a bit lost. It's okay to not always be credible and start to be more curious. The more questions you can ask, the more natural the conversation will flow and build.

2) You're focusing too much on what they've done not what they've said


"I see that you've been to the same university as me". This is creepy. Please forget about the school, work history, summary, awards, and reference sections. Instead go straight to the associations, groups and network associations.

Pro tip: I can send them an approach which says we've noticed you said this and we'd like to ask you some questions. This builds rapport and is a more authentic way of building a relationship.

3) You are not disclosing your sources


Don't say, "I understand you recently moved jobs" "I'm aware you're looking for new software" or "I know you also know Bob". These statements raise questions that you don't want people asking themselves.

Pro tip: "I'm actually not a member of the group, ..." is an opener that might sound trivial, but that's an important phrase to include to save you a lot of time from explaining, and allows you to establish that the person you are approaching still remains to be the expert.

***

It's important to remember that every approach you make must have a specific goal in mind. If not your recipient or prospect won't know what's the objective of you trying to reach out to them. You might be asking, when should you take the lead in the conversation? The answer is at some point of time when you the conversation is headed towards a direction you expect it to. The answer is vague, and you'd like an accurate answer to it, but the truth is there isn't one. The positive you can take from this is that when you place more power in the prospects hands, it's more likely that they will be more eager to open to you.

If you'd like to learn more about how we can help you with SMS Marketing, you can follow our updates here on our blog, or you can get in touch with us.

Monday, 2 October 2017

7 Easy SMS Ideas to Attract Foot Traffic to your Store


SMS Marketing is the success for a number of industries. On average there more than 95 million SMS are sent every single day in Malaysia. This is another way that retailers can engage with and motivate consumers.

What sets SMS apart from other marketing initiatives is the level of intimacy SMS has with the user. There's a difference compared to other digital and print ads, is that the subscribers on your list have explicitly chosen to receive communications from you and that they want to hear from you.

When you compare this with other forms of ads like social media, paid ads, or other tactics, nothing is more personal than SMS. Any message you're sending actually lands in someone's cellphone, every single time. Social media only reaches a ratio of your entire audience potential and paid traffic is often not qualified. The idea is with other forms of adverts, the activity of reaching out to people don't even know your brand yet with expectation for them to spend money on you.

Utilising SMS Marketing allows you to reach a qualified audience on an intimate nature, which means that these people are more qualified to take action.

Below you'll find ways Malaysian retailers can use SMS Marketing to lure in more foot traffic.


What to Include in Every SMS

Malaysian Retailers who have brick-and-mortar stores should always include information (a CTA) in every SMS as a reminder to come to the shop. Here are some things you'll want to consider; A specific landing page leading from the SMS that shows:


  • A list of locations (plus a link to easily get directions from Waze / Google Maps)
  • Store hours and phone numbers.


Use more personal language. For example: "Your Local Store", compared to "Nearby Locations" or "Nearby Stores". The more personalised the messaging feels to the customer, the more likely it will resonate.

Don't Just Send SMSs

There's more to SMS marketing than simply sending SMS's to your list. There's a requirement for maintenance, strategy, and nurturing involved, as well.

Building Your List

If you don't have an existing SMS list, you're going to need to get one. And if you're thinking that it's as easy as putting up a form on your website. Think again.

Customers sign up for SMS lists because they want to get something out of it. In some cases, it could be a free resource and for other cases, they sign up because of a free gift with purchase. If you're not sure what to offer your SMS subscribers, think about who your target market is and what they want. It could be as simple as a coupon code, but it needs to be appealing enough to make your customers want to give you their personal information.

Then think how you will encourage customers to sign up on your list. There are many ways to do this, but again, it comes down to your target market. If your target market are mainly on Facebook, run a paid Facebook campaign to build your list. Likewise for other channels; magazines, forums, associations, etc.

Segmenting Your List

SMS list segmentation is important. Period.

List segmentation is by creating lists within your list. Sublists, of customers with similar attributes grouped together by demographics, purchasing behavior, SMS engagement, and more.

"If you want to use SMS to drive more foot traffic to your store, you must make sure that you're only SMSing customers that have registered interest to actually coming into your store."


SMS Ideas to Attract More Foot Traffic to Your Store

In-Store Events and Announcements

This method is a highly recommended way for retailers to boost foot traffic. If you really want customers to come to your events, you'll need to do more than just send a one-time event about it.

Instead, think of an SMS series that you can send weeks prior to the event. This helps build buzz, and your list is more likely to see it.

For example:
Athletic gear: Have a meet-and-greet with a local celebrity athlete. Send out emails that have exclusive Q&As, the athlete's training regimen, and videos where the athlete demonstrates different exercises. Post-event, distribute more fitness tips, coupons for any recommended gear (in-store purchases only!), and information on future events.

Celebrate Customer Milestones

Customers have relationships with brands, and the more brands nurture those relationships, the more they can expect their customers to purchase with them. Celebrating milestones in the brand's relationship with its customers you can encourage them to come in store to share that moment with your brand. Here are some examples of what you can implement for your customer:


  • Birthday
  • Anniversary of joining your SMS list
  • Anniversary of first purchase



Build Hype Around Your Products

New Arrivals? Stock running low? Use SMS to create buzz around your products to give updates. Let your customers know about the status of products.


  • New arrivals
  • Popular products
  • Running low


SMS Marketing Is Only as Strong as Your Strategy


At the end of everything, a strong SMS marketing strategy is important to ongoing and consistent success. Starting out with measurable goals and a target market in mind will help ensure your SMS marketing is as effective as possible.



Find out more about how you can implement SMS Marketing here.

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Follow up emails to send instead of just "checking-in"


The action of performing sales places people in front of the task of convincing another person that the offer being presented is going to improve their current situation. Notice how sales is described as "a task of convincing another person...". Often sales people forget that behind the email that they're sending out they are in actuality trying to reach out to someone that they have not before in an attempt to request that they act on something you're selling to them. Take a moment and think this through, it's already a long shot to get a friend to do something for you, and it's even tougher to get someone that does not know you to do anything you ask of them.

Described here involves the "checking-in" scenario when the person you're trying to reach out to does not respond in a favorable manner. The secret to it is to always remember, you're talking to a human being and sending out emails "just checking in..." is like a virtual nudge that not many people like to receive.

Scenario: If they have never responded


(1) Bring up a common challenge that your buyers face and ask if they're currently facing it. 

Example: 

Hi Nurul,

The clients I worked with are often struggling to find creative low cost ways of engaging with their local communities.

If so I have several ideas that may help -- like [idea]. If you'd like to discuss more I'm free for a call on [date at time] or [date at time].


(2) Bump your email up using the buried email technique. 


Example: 

Hi Mohammad,

Just wanted to follow up in case this email got buried.

(3) Call attention to what they're competitor is doing and ask how they'll resolve it.

Example:

Hi Lee,

I saw that [competitor] has been doing well in [area] lately. Do you have any plans in place for addressing it?

I have some ideas -- if you want to hear them. Let's schedule a call.

Scenario: If you lost the deal


(1) Check how things are going after implementing a competitor's product.

Example:

Hi Tan,

It's been a [time period] you signed on with [competitor]. How are things going?

-----

Often salespeople get caught up in sending standard touching base message often because of time. With some of these examples, sending a thoughtful email message takes mere minutes -- with an increased chance of converting into a large payoff.

Try reaching out to customers using unique channels. Get they're attention through SMS, it's cheap and is guaranteed to reach the target recipient. Find out more here.

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

How to get more followers on Instagram


If you're here reading this then you already must know the potential that Instagram offers as a channel for you to sell and market your brand. It's ever more so important for your business to humanize your approach so that you attract employees that share the same goals as you and delight your customers as their growing needs and expectations change.

Here's the crunch. Unless you're famous it's actually nearly impossible to get a large following on Instagram without hard work or money $$.


For an average business, growing a fanbase or following takes dedicated daily attention and time. That being said, there is a way to get at least your first 1,000 followers on your Instagram account (Disclaimer: this still requires time and effort, but rest assured it is more focused and efficient). The secret is to know where to invest your time and effort, by customizing your profile, curating content, writing clever copy, using hashtags and working with influencers and fans through actions that incentivize engagement.

Let's go through how you could gain your first 1,000 followers by creating an Instagram worthy profile through to using contests while staying true to your brand.

How to get more followers on Instagram

1) Make your profile cool



The easiest and often missed, make sure your profile is public (you can do this by navigating to your Instagram account's "Options" and make sure the "Private Account" is turned off.

Make sure your username is recognizable and easily searchable. How? If your business name is already taken try keeping the first part of your username as your business name so people who are searching for your business are more likely to find you. For example @lornajaneactive

2) Dedicate to content creation



Commit to have someone or yourself to creating content so that there is a good variety of postings that comes handy when you need it!

3) Improve your photo taking and editing skills


On Instagram post quality matters. I should emphasize that it matters A LOT. Do not put a bad photo up and always have a good eye for great photos. You can beef up on your photography skills here and your editing skills (there's a list of great websites to learn editing posted at despreneur).

4) Populate your Instagram page


If it's your first time it's a good idea to get posts up (around 20 or so) before you start engaging with people and working down this list.


5) Use relevant hashtags


To help relate to your followers try getting on a hashtag campaign. Like above ^

6) Run contests


A great way to expand your reach while increasing engagement on your profile would be to publish a promotion contest post then ask your audience to follow, like and comment on the photo to enter. Include hashtags like the example above #letsbefrank so you can include user generated content in your postings.

7) Make your Instagram profile easy to find and follow



Place a follow button link, icon on your website / email newsletters so it's easy for people to find your profile and interact with you. More often than not most audiences don't even know that a brand is actively engaging on Social Media. See our website for an example above.

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These marketing tips are to help you improve your business and what you can do to ensure that the business you're running drives leads in a variety of ways for you. Consider SMS Marketing and alternative direct approach to CRM for existing customers or to reach out to customers that have interest but have yet to covert. Find out more here.

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Marketers like SMS. With a 99% Open Rate and a 36% Click Through Rate It's Hard Not To.


We'd like to wish all Malaysians Selamat Hari Merdeka! This year's Merdeka is special with the SEA Games being hosted in Kuala Lumpur. Learn more about the SEA Games here.

Find out how you can spice up your holiday with mobile marketing below.


During Merdeka there are major discounts and deals given to consumers and this has been the highlight and trend that majority of Malaysians look forward to.

Redbox turned the opportunity into their benefit when they SMSed text messages to their followers to follow them on their Instagram account. This is a cross-channel approach to encourage users to participate with their different marketing channels.

With the average SMS open rate at 99% and the average click through rate at 36% it is easy for brands to direct their customers to other owned marketing channels. The statistics are also the reason why a lot of brands are attracted to the possibility of SMS.



Hey it's the holiday season in Malaysia with a lot of brands taking advantage of the festivities by testing and making returns on alternative marketing methods and channels.

Learn other ways you could use SMS for your business here: How to conduct a SMS giveaway and Here are 10 reasons why your cafe should use SMS marketing.


We believe that Malaysia is a beautiful country with abundant opportunity. Here is to the future :)

#bangkitbersama
#NegaraKuSehatiSejiwa

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

5 Posts-pitch follow up mistakes keeping you from closing more sales


You have a great feeling. You feel great after the killer pitch. But then there's suddenly a silence. Everyone in sales has felt this pain at some time or another. It's tough. So here's a list of mistakes to avoid right after the pitch.

1) Not turning down a prospect.


You know that a client isn't a good fit for your company. Often before you hang up the phone or leave the meeting room. There's also a high chance that you even knew beforehand. The chances are also that they knew it to -- which is likely the reason why they have little motivation to follow up with you.

Know when it's right to politely follow up with your lead and let them know your company can't meet their needs right now. It's also a good idea to provide them with a few recommendations of other vendors that might be a better fit.

2) Sending a generic follow-up.


Don't do this. You've worked hard to get to know your lead (to make friends) and imagine what it would be like to receive a templated email with an <insert name here> you forgot to fill in?

Have a template to follow, but take a bit of time to put some details either about their company or personal bits from previous conversations into your email to spice it up. Try "Ready to blow away your customers with a great new website that helps you to support your sales teams close deals?" rather than "just following up".

3) Being too "pushy".


At the end of your pitch, you should have a good understanding of your prospect's challenges and how you can help them to solve them.

Because you know all of this, it can be easy to fall into the trap of thrusting hard deadlines on them, or "just checking in" emails that sound threatening: "This is my third attempt to reach you ... "

Always remember that giving your prospect the space they need, when they need it, can be more effective than pushing them for a close.

4) Not listening


You've done it! Aced the pitch, but the sale hasn't happened yet. This doesn't mean that you should stop listening to your prospect. You should make every effort to keep the dialogue open and willing to shift your current approach if there are new goals or challenges that emerge after the pitch.

5) Refusing to take "no" for an answer


Be persistent, but also know if they're just not going to get back to you right now. Numbers might work against you this month but step away for a bit and see if you can check in and salvage the opportunity at a later date.

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Take note that when a prospect doesn't choose your company, it's not about you. Learn from it. Grow from it. Turn it into part of the reason you earn the business on your next deal. Make your sales process incrementally better by focusing on the details, and you'll be surprised that with more direct leads it might lead you the better numbers month on month. Find out more click here.

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

3 Data-driven topics to choose for your blog


The topic of crafting a viral topic is always a heated argument amongst different groups of content creators. There's an issue here that is apparent, we use a lot of our intuition when making these decisions. What we feel our readers may like does not necessarily mean that our readers feel the same way.

Instead of relying on our own personal tastes, we should let our audiences dictate what are the topics they want to read -- or else we risk publishing content that is irrelevant to our audience group.

Here's our suggestion on how to choose topics for your blog using data-driven methods:


(1) Find out what already works for you


You need to first tag your blog posts to identify clearly between the types of posts you are putting for your readers. You'll need to track the performance of your posts and to do that you'll need to decide on a performance metric to measure against. Options such as page views, time on page, subscribers gained, etc. are amongst the few measures you can rely on.

(2) Ask Sales about your customer's pain points


Sales always consult with your customer's on a daily basis and they are most familiar with your customer's actual needs and and pain points. Collaborating is the best way to identify what are the likely topics your readers may relate to as potential or existing customers.

(3) See what works for your competitors


The probability of your competitors having similar audiences with yours is high. This means their popular content is likely to be popular for you too. Once you've discovered their popular content, try to ask yourself how you can improve their work. It's important to provide your own unique view and opinion on the topic and new insights to your audience.

Get EVERWORKS Web Hosting now for collocated hosting now. Start creating high quality content for your readers without worrying about technical computer jargon. Find out more now.

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Kuala Lumpur 2017 Sea Games Stadium and Venues


It's been 16 years since Malaysia last hosted the Sea Games. The opening and closing ceremonies are going to be held at the National Stadium Bukit Jalil. In addition to the National Stadium, 32 other venues will be used, where mostly will be spread over the Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Putrajaya regions, with 2 other regions further away with 1 in Langkawi and another in Terengganu.

image credit: Sport Stardom

For transportation both Grab Car/Taxi and Touch N Go are the most convenient ways you will be able to travel quickly and easily to all Sea Games locations. Some locations are easily accessible by public transport (you can use your Touch N Go), but for other locations that is difficult to access to using public transport the ever popular Malaysian ride hailing app Grab is reliable, affordable, and widely used in Malaysia.

The closest station to the Bukit Jalil National Stadium is the Bukit Jalil LRT Station, which you can access on the Sri Petaling Line (Line 4 on the Rapid KL Klang Valley Transit Map).

Important links:

Keep up with the latest news on Kuala Lumpur 2017 through their official website here.
You can follow the latest happenings on the games through their official YouTube channel here.

For emergencies call 999


This connects you to the fire and rescue departments, police, maritime enforcement agency, civil defense department, and the hospital.

Weather in Malaysia is expected to be cloudy with rain. Do bring along umbrellas, and plenty of water to keep hydrated. It's also good to keep a bag ready for you to change into clean clothes when needed.

All in all enjoy the Sea Games, and welcome to Malaysia :)

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If you're a local business that is looking to take this opportunity to reach out to your existing customer base you can do so directly by using SMS Marketing. Here are 10 reasons why you should, how to run an sms campaign, and how to run a successful giveaway using sms, or if you'd like get in touch with us and we'd be happy to discuss how we can help you.

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

5 Questions to Ask Before Creating a Marketing Budget


A smart marketing budget is one of the most important things you can do for your business. However, a lot of small companies are afraid of it.

A small business owner recently brought up in a conversation saying that he wants to bring his business to the next level. Not knowing what the next level meant I asked him him to elaborate further, which he responded that he wanted more. After further probing I found out that he wanted more clients who could spend more money with him and that he wanted to do it in a profitable way.

Now the conversation was starting to become productive with a strong statement of intent, because there was a well defined objective. Our conversation after was heated and there was a sense of connection until the topic of budget was brought up. This is something all business owners / managers hate to hear.

There are multiple perspectives on having a budget. A bad perception on a marketing budget would be that having one would promote wastefulness. That is far from the truth.

An intelligent budget is the most important thing you can do for your business. It's as good as creating an action plan that would guide the actions required to accomplish an objective moving forward. It is important to figure out how to spend the marketing budget as much as figuring out how to do marketing.

Here are the 5 questions you to ask yourself before creating a marketing budget for your small business.


Q1: What are my needs?

Analysis: Do you need more leads? More sales? More people to know about your brand (also known as brand awareness)? With those goals in place you'll be able to better grasp the task at hand and to determine the actions you need to take moving forward.

Q2: What are you currently paying to obtain your sales?

Analysis: In running your day-to-day business we need to find out how much you are currently spending to obtain clients or to get people to know about your brand. If you have sales representatives the cost of their labor and benefits will be set against your new sales. On the other hand if you have a storefront in a prime address you are perhaps spending more than you need to for foot traffic.

Q3: How fast can you afford to grow?

Analysis: If you make RM 1,000 for every RM 5,000 in sales and you determine that you are willing to spend 20% on each lead for a sale, that's RM 200 you can afford to pay. Now you can ask yourself how many clients like that are you able to buy? (You can learn how to calculate your minimum and maximum ad spend budget here)

Q4: Am I able to take that risk?

Analysis: Marketing is testing. There is no way for you to know if you will indeed get 10 clients if you spend it and ultimately risk not getting any clients at all. There's always an apparent risk that you may not get the ROI you are looking for when you are marketing your business.

Q5: How do I minimise my risk?

Analysis: Before starting on your marketing journey and spending all of your money, even with you knowing that there are apparent risks involved with marketing, you should come to expect that you might fail. With a marketing strategy in place you are able to determine your maximum daily spend and you can therefore test in micro spends and hopefully it will lead you to your final objective.

Start your journey with SMS Marketing, it's cost effective and its delivery rate is 100% and direct to the consumer. Find out more information here.

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

How to calculate your ad budget?

Advertising is important, but before you pour all your money into spending for ads, you should figure out how much you should spend. Often a complex and abstract problem can be undone by wrapping step by step actions that move towards a working solution.


Remember this isn't a 100% sure fire guaranteed way to work for everyone, because advertising is an art more than an acquired technical competency. Know what you're spending on and have control over the actions to understand and adapt, and with technology this can be done quick - saving you time and investment dollars.

You must be wondering, this is the first time you are doing advertising and the thought of spending money with no guarantee of return scares you. Your business till this date has relied on networking and word-of-mouth. Big competition use ads frequently, and you have an inclination to try with a small ad campaign, but you worry that it will cost a lot of money.

Q: Where do I start?


A: The first thing you could do is to calculate your minimum and maximum budgets. What this does is by giving you a minimum and maximum limit for spending on your ads.


Step 1: 

Use 10% and 12% of your projected annual gross sales and multiply each by the markup made on your average transaction. The formula is as follows below:

Minimum budget = 10% of projected annual gross sales x markup made on average transaction
Maximum budget = 12% of projected annual gross sales x markup made on average transaction

Important note: Do not confuse markup with margin. In our calculation we use gross markup and not margin. For example: You sell a t-shirt for RM 150 and your cost is RM 100 your markup would be 50% (1-[150/100] = 0.5). Your margin, however, is only 33.33% (50/150 = 0.3333). Most retail stores carry a markup of approximately 100%, but more expensive products and services typically only carry a markup of only 10% to 15%.

Step 2: 

Deduct your rent from both the minimum and maximum budget.

Step 3: 

The remaining minimum and maximum budget represents your allowable amounts for the year.

At the end of this step you might have learnt that you've spent your ad on expensive rent or that you should have done a lot more advertising.

Here's a working example so you can grasp the concept above:


Assume that my business is projected to make RM 1,000,000 in sales this year, I have a profit margin of 25% and my rent is RM 30,000 per year (RM 2,500/mth x 12 mths). The first thing to do is is calculate 10% and 12% of gross projected sales, which is RM 100,000 and RM120,000 respectively.

Second, we must convert margin to markup. RM 250,000 is gross profits (25% x RM 100,000) and the cost incurred to the business is RM 750,000 (RM 1,000,000 - RM 250,000). Dividing the gross profits by the cost incurred to the business we are able to find that the markup would be 33.33% (RM 250,000 / RM 750,000 = 0.3333).

Finally, we multiply both 10% and 12% projected gross sales with the markup to see our adjusted  minimum and maximum ad spend budget, which is RM33,330 (RM 100,000 x 33.33%) and RM 39,996 (RM 120,000 x 33.33%) respectively. From these two budgets we must then adjust for rent leaving us with the final adjusted minimum and maximum ad spend budget of RM 3,330 and RM 9,996 respectively.

Most advertising / sales reps will sale put a ballpark figure of 5% to 7% of gross sales to be the "correct" amount for advertising, but don't believe it. It isn't possible to put a 1 size shoe fits all percentile without taking into consideration the markup on your average sale and cost of rent.

Reasoning can be placed that an expensive rent can be translated as good visibility in a good location, requiring less advertising compared to an affordable location. This is fair judgment and should be weighed against the calculation above to justify rent as a form of advertising.

The formula above is a metric I use to measure how the business should prepare its overall ad spend budget and taking into consideration the markup and rent expenses it will incur. Good luck! :)

Once you've worked out your ad budget pull your campaign together. Here are some additional resources to give you inspiration on how to move forward How to run a SMS Campaign for you restaurant and How to conduct a SMS Giveaway.

If you're looking for a partner for SMS Marketing drop us a mailer.

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

How to conduct a SMS giveaway - Chipotle example


Driving engagement with your fans is the buzz of the marketing world right now. A 1 way passive interaction between the advertiser and the receiver doesn't generate the best return on ad spend as the world is in demand for more. Competition among advertisers is fierce and there is a greater need to stand out from the crowd.

A giveaway is common, but running a giveaway campaign through sms marketing is not common in Malaysia.


Do note that there is a basis for my perspective in running a giveaway through SMS marketing, mobile penetration in Malaysia is at an all time high, 144.8%, and more marketers should take advantage of this channel.


Here's an example, our friends at Chipotle finished their Great Dorm Giveaway, which allowed students to enter the SMS giveaway by texting DORM2 to the SMS short code 888222. The SMS giveaway gave the chance for students to win a Chipotle catered party for 100, in addition to a $1,000 Target gift card.

Runners up would receive a Chipotle catered party for 20 and a $25 Target gift card. When fans texted “DORM2” to 888222, in order to enter the SMS giveaway, they received the follow text message response, asking them to respond YES to confirm that they were a student at a participating college. This drove student engagement with Chipotle a marketing objective that drives brand awareness, and recognition amongst its customers.

Giveaways are common to drive brand recognition for brands and to introduce increased engagement with customers that are already passively participating with your brand. This introduces an action layer that encourages customers to interact and actively participate with brand based activities.

Want to learn how you can employ this for your business too? Learn more here.

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Here are 10 reasons why your cafe should use SMS marketing


Owning a cafe is great, but you're more often than not making a small percentage of potential customers within a certain distance radius. You've got a great location and business is now moving at a predictable pace. Driving more new walk-ins to your cafe is tough because marketing efforts in different locations aren't driving back the return on ad spend you're expecting. Here's a perspective, why not target existing customer databases that have already interacted with your store, but don't return often enough.

Either these customers are unaware that you've put in effort to provide them with special offers and deals, or these customers came to you out of the spur of the moment and impulse entry decision to give you a try. To better ensure that these customers keep coming back you'll have to remind them and a great way to drive repeat customers are through SMS marketing.

"Here are 5 reasons why your cafe should be considering SMS marketing as part of your ad spend."


1. The big boys are doing it, you're missing out if you don't. 

Subway, Pizza Hut, Papa Johns, and more are doing it to keep their customers informed.
Helps build a loyal customer base.

For example: Taco Bell launched a mobile marketing campaign in an effort to develop another channel to communicate with their most loyal customers. To subscribe to the Taco Bell mobile marketing campaign, customers texted “TBIC” to 30364. To incentivize customers to opt-in, Taco Bell offered a free Frutista Freeze, with the purchase of any food item, after a customers opted-in to the mobile marketing program. The restaurant’s mobile marketing campaign was promoted to customers through traditional media such as radio, television and print, generating 13,000 opt-ins within the first five weeks.

2. Get to more customers. 

Papa Murphy’s launched a mobile marketing campaign pilot with the goal being to bring more customers to their Kansas City locations. By using in-store signs, tent pop-ups, and an online opt-in form to advertise their new mobile marketing campaign, the restaurant was able to build a 16,000 person mobile customer database. Mobile marketing promotions such as a $5 Chicken Bacon Artichoke pizza generated redemption rates of more than 9 percent, while deals like a $5.55 taco pizza on Cinco De Mayo generated redemption rates of 11.5 percent, and half-off pizzas generated redemption rates north of 12 percent. The highest redemption rates Papa Murphy’s saw was with a $5, 3-topping pizza, which generated a 17.9 percent redemption rate. The mobile marketing campaign has since expanded across 26 other states, and is estimated to have more than 100,000 mobile subscribers.

3. Increase repeat customers.

A 16-store franchise of Subway restaurants in the New York region launched a mobile marketing campaign to increase repeat business with their customers. The program was advertised in-store with various forms of marketing collateral, and on local radio and television as the “My Subway Mobile SMS” program. The franchise after a few months had generated a database of 5,000 customer mobile phone numbers. During this period, the Subway franchise sent out 13,000 mobile promotions, averaging a 9% redemption rate, which was significantly higher than the 1% redemption rate Subway experienced with their direct mail campaigns.

4. Find a channel that stands out better than channels that don't

During a 15 month period, Pizza Hut U.K. setup geofence locations within a half-mile radius of each of their 340 Pizza Hut locations. During this period, Pizza Hut found the mobile marketing campaign was on average 142% more efficient in increasing incremental sales than other marketing channels, and 4.4 times more effective than TV ads, and 2.6 times more effective than online ads.

Carl’s Jr. sent out a mobile offer to customers on May 14, 2013. The mobile offer was for a $6 burger combo for only $2.99. Not only did this mobile offer get a 19% redemption rate, the fast-food chain generated $14 in new sales for every $1 they spent on this campaign.

5. Increase store traffic.

Dunkin’ Donuts ran a mobile marketing campaign in the Boston area, encouraging customers to opt-in to mobile offers. The mobile marketing campaign was advertised on local radio and through mobile internet ads. This resulted in 7,500 consumers opting in to receive Dunkin’ Donuts mobile offers. After the first mobile offer, 17% of recipients forwarded or showed the offer to a friend, 35% considered themselves more likely to buy lattes and coffee from Dunkin’ Donuts in the future, and Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants in the Boston area experienced a 21% increase in store traffic.

What if you're cafe is only a 1 cafe operation?

Don't sweat it because a Papa John’s Pizza franchise in the U.K. ran a three week mobile marketing campaign, sending a mobile offer to their 8,1000 previously opted-in customers that offered customers any Pizza, of any size for £6.99 (pickup) or £8.99 (delivery). This one mobile offer increased sales for this franchise during the three week period by 33%.

Find out how you can increase sales and repeat customers. Get started with a campaign now.