Top 5 Tips to Beat Your Competitors

Resellers can be a thorn in the side of any retailer, especially when it comes to drawing in traffic through advertising. Whether it’s through Paid Search, Display, or Paid Social, we’ve gathered some of our top tips for beating out your competitors across the digital space.

  1. On Social, you are able to exclude your site visitors, allowing you to create campaigns that specifically target prospects who have little knowledge of your brand. If new customer acquisition is your goal, then this is a great way to boost your brand awareness on social.
  2. Your CRM data can prove especially useful for both Search and Social. It keeps you more informed on your existing customers, allowing you to tailor your content to suit what they’re actually buying, and keep yourself front of mind to avoid competitors taking a loyal customer away. Nothing is worse than your customer seeing an ad for a competitor when looking for one of your products.
  3. Stay on top of what your competitors are doing. Are they running a sale? Have they made a major change to their landing page? This might be the impetus someone needs to jump ship to a competitor. Keep an eye out for any major changes, and respond accordingly.
  4. Make sure you have protected your brand by ensuring your trademark is registered with Google. While this won’t stop anyone from bidding on your terms, it will make it more expensive to do so as they can’t use your brand name in their copy – thus lowering their quality score – and will make their ad look less related to the search – lowering CTR.
  5. Share your data across channels to make sure you pick up anyone who didn’t convert on another channel. For example, use your top performing keywords on Search to fuel your Display contextual targeting, or using cross-channel audiences on Social so you don’t miss someone who clicked on a Shopping ad but didn’t convert, and so on.

Keep these tips in mind and you’ll be sure to stand out amongst competitors and resellers alike. 

Why Ad-Blocking is at a Three Year Low.

If you were to say you’ve never been irritated by an ad or pop-up, you’d be lying. With pop-ups and banners appearing on most sites, it’s no surprise that consumers have turned to ad-blockers in an effort to avoid them. Google’s even developing an update that will potentially prevent the use of ad-blockers on their search platform.

Last year, a survey from the Association for Online Publishing (AOP) took an in-depth look at the trends in ad-blocker use. The results showed that online ad-blocking was at an all-time high in 2016, with 30.6% of ads being restricted by ad-blocking programs.

Ad-blocking is a clear message from consumers that our ads do not serve them. Having been so overrun with banners and pop-ups, they have developed the belief that ads are ‘frustrating, unwanted and irrelevant’. So, advertisers have been forced to change tact.

It seems to have worked; with the AOP also highlighting that ad-blocking hit its lowest point in the last three years during Q4 of 2018 – falling to an incredible 10.3% . So what have we done to change the industry, to change the mindset of an online mass?

Customer-Centricity

There are a number of ways for advertisers to place customer interest at the core of our campaigns; as discussed by Product Development Manager Fred Maude in last summer’s NMPignite seminar. By providing users with valuable experiences, we can begin to alleviate the rise in ad blocking. With the development of AI and more sophisticated data collection methods, we can make ads which are more personalised than ever.  Precise user information allows us to alter advertising creatives and placement to have maximum impact.

The Customer is ALWAYS right” Fred Maude

In short; If we deliver something that is tailored to their wants and needs, they will be more likely to engage with the ad.

User Experience

In order to make campaigns more customer-centric, we must consider the user experience as a whole. Using cookies and integrated data, we are able to build a greater picture of the user in order to connect with them and encourage engagement. Content should be created around their needs and help them identify how the brand can solve their unique problems.

A big part of the online experience involves the way consumers react to ads. Interestingly, choice can play a big role in this, with 79% of customers claiming they would consider uninstalling an ad blocker if they had the choice to close, skip, or ignore ads. This provides the option to engage in the content or not and can offer more accurate data on impressions and conversion rates.

Similarly, consider an advert that is not only customer-centric, but also contextual to the consumer’s current phase of the online journey. By placing ads on contextually relevant sites, and remarketing products that customers have already engaged with, we can change the function of the ad to a ‘helpful shopping tool’. This, paired with the rise of online shopping and ‘browsing culture’ has allowed ads to hold their own.

It’s clear that the consumer experience of Display and PPC ads has changed dramatically in recent years. The decrease in blocker use clearly reveals that advertising strategies have shifted  In a way that users are responding well to.

With this in mind, ensure that your ads focus on customer centricity and the user experience. This will allow us to continue to improve our audience’s relationship with advertising.

NMPi Shortlisted at UK Digital Growth Awards

We’re thrilled to announce that we have been shortlisted for yet another award for our innovative data-driven strategies!

Last month, we celebrated our success at the UK Biddable Awards, The Drum Marketing Awards, and the PMA’s. Then celebrations continued this May, when we were shortlisted for four awards at the Effective Digital Marketing Awards.

Now, we’re on another shortlist – this time with the UK Digital Growth Awards! These awards reward excellence in UX, CRO and Search, where campaigns have driven tangible growth and results.

We’ve been shortlisted for ‘Best Use of Data’ for our campaign with Liverpool FC – making this the 7th Award our Liverpool campaign has been shortlisted for.

Our partnership with Liverpool on their display campaign has already achieved 3 award wins in 2019, proving to be a real showcase of talent for our groundbreaking and successful campaigns.

We’ll let our very own Anna Jorysz’s presentation on our “data-driven approach” to success show you how well deserved this nomination is.

Keep your fingers crossed and watch this space on the 17th July!

 

NMPi Shortlisted at Effective Digital Marketing Awards

The NMPi team are excited to announce that we’ve been shortlisted in 4 categories at the Effective Digital Marketing Awards!

We’ve been shortlisted in the following categories:

Most Effective Search Marketing Campaign: Superdrug Online Doctor and NMPi – The Only Way is Up

Most Effective Performance Marketing Campaign: Pets Best Insurance and NMPi – Doing What’s Best for Pets Best Insurance

Most Effective Programmatic Campaign: Liverpool FC and NMPi – There’s No Substitute for Good Display

Most Effective Retail & FMCG Campaign: Liverpool FC and NMPi – There’s No Substitute for Good Display

Following a successful first quarter, winning at the UK Biddable Awards, The Drum Marketing Awards, and the PMAs, we’ve got our fingers crossed for some more wins on 9th July.

NMPi Takes Home 2 Awards at Performance Marketing Awards

It is with great pride that we announce NMPi has taken home two awards at this year’s Performance Marketing Awards!

Our work with Liverpool Football Club was recognised for not only the Best Use of Programmatic but also as the Most Creative Performance Marketing Campaign.

The campaign looks at the strategy behind the rich media banners designed and built by the NMPi Display team, which utilised narrative sequences, fan engagement and relevance to promote Liverpool FC’s 2018/2019 New Balance Kit. To learn more about the campaign, check out Anna Jorysz’s presentation from our latest seminar where she discusses the data strategy behind her banners.

The judges honoured us with their kind words, “Their focus to drive performance was at the heart of this submission and their unique approach was a real driver of success.”

This brings the total awards wins for our work with LFC up to 3 so far this year, as we were also awarded the Best Use of Data at the UK Biddable Media Awards earlier this year.

We also won the Health Campaign of the Year at The Drum Marketing Awards for our work with Superdrug Online Doctor.

 

Data Integration: Taking a Measured Approach

Read Time: 3 Minutes

NMPi’s Performance Display Channel Manager, Anna Jorysz, took to the stage at our latest seminar to talk about how to take a measured approach to your data integration.

Anna will be the first to tell you that innovation is integral to creating an attention-grabbing display campaign, but it has to have a point and it has to make gains. There is no point to being seduced by an exciting idea if it doesn’t work, or even worse if you have no way of knowing if it works or not.

This is a concept that Anna lives and breathes because through our pure-performance model NMPi pays for the advertising spend and we only make money when we drive results. In other words, it can’t just look good, it needs to be effective and efficient.

This also applies to integrating data into your campaigns.

When it comes to your digital campaigns there are two main areas where you integrate data: (1) Creative and Messaging – personalisation efforts, dynamic ads, and the integration of live data into campaigns, and (2) Buying and Targeting – using data to shape bidding strategies and audience segmentation.

With these areas in mind, there are 4 key questions to consider when you are approaching your planning and strategies there:

  • What are you trying to achieve?
  • Why will data help you to achieve this?
  • How will you measure your success?
  • How will you continue to optimise further?

Make sure to watch Anna’s video to learn more about how she uses data in her award-winning campaign for Liverpool FC.

The Key to Success

There are three main things to remember above all when integrating data into your campaigns:

  • Measure: Make sure you’re starting from the data
  • Be Measured: Don’t throw the kitchen sink at it. Start from what you know works, optimise and build up
  • Measure Again: Monitor what’s working and what’s not, and keep feeding that back as you continue to optimise

And while you’re doing all that don’t forget to be creative – being data-driven should never come at the expense of big ideas.

Make sure to watch Anna’s video to learn more about how she uses data in her award-winning campaign for Liverpool FC.

Download Anna’s slides: Data Integration: Taking a Measured Approach

The Power of Adaptability

Read Time: 5 Minutes

Laura Penhaul was the keynote at NMPi’s recent seminar, where she talked about her experience as Team Leader for the Coxless Crew as they rowed across the Pacific Ocean, setting 2 world records in the process.

“When there is an element of choice,” she began, “we and society as a whole will choose the path of least resistance;” the easy route, the less risky route, the less energy-consuming so as to allow room for all the other factors in life. But what if we get comfortable with stepping into the unknown? It was only by tackling the largest ocean in the world that Laura was able to understand how to cope with the unknown, and what we draw upon when we want to give up.

Adaptability: the quality of being able to adjust to new conditions

Adaptability is a quality that is, in fact, innate in all humans; it’s a part of our physiology. Our immune system, the way we grow, how we remodel from injury, how we acclimatise to altitude or heat, it’s all process of adaption. When we don’t give ourselves a choice, we naturally adapt to our new life path.

While working with Paralympic athletes, Laura saw this adaption every day. Jacko Van Gaas, injured in the war, awoke and felt lucky to be alive. He has gone on to be a British Paralympic cyclist & part of the first ever adaptive team to climb the 7 highest peaks in the world and 2 poles – he chose to make the most of his abilities.

“Why do we wait to be faced with significant adversity before we realise our abilities?” questions Laura.

Losing Sight of Shore

What better way to understand this mindset than by doing something completely unknown – and that’s when Laura decided to row an ocean. Starting in San Francisco, she and 3 other women headed out into the expanse of the largest ocean in the world with no support, no get-out clause, and no safety boat in sight. “The term ‘go with the flow’ soon became a way of life out there, because that’s all we could do,” states Laura. They had to draw on adaptive behaviours to take on the challenge and constantly evolve through the journey, learning as they went and understanding there is no failure if we reflect and learn from it.

We all have our own Pacific to cross – whether literal or figurative. Not everything will play out exactly as written in the guidebook. Allowing yourself to control the controllable and adapt to the rest, we can minimise that threat of the unknown and stop ourselves from wanting to give up.

Download Laura’s slides: The Power of Adaptability

Watch Laura’s Netflix Documentary, Losing Sight of Shore

Napapijri Takes Responsibility

Read Time: 3 Minutes

The fashion industry of late has gone through a shocking realisation. The realisation that it is, unfortunately, a dirty business. Statistically, it is one of the top polluters in the world: a survey from Sainsbury’s last year showed that 235m items ended up in a landfill as people switched to their summer wardrobe. The average piece of clothing in the UK lasts for less than 3 years before being discarded, with over 1m tonnes of new clothing being bought last year. We are constantly consuming stuff, and constantly throwing it away.

At NMPi’s latest seminar, Rob Herdman, Senior Global Manager – PR & Media for Napapijri, took to the stage to explain how they realised that they had a responsibility to change. The Italian fashion brand has an internal philosophy to address sustainability issues, which in turn frames a lot of their decision making. Called “Make it Better”, they focus on doing what they were doing slightly better year on year so they will eventually get to a point they can be happy with. Often, we try to act too quickly, and we can’t enact the change quick enough, or we end up doing things wrong. This way, Napapijri sets a goal for 3 years down the line and moves there step by step.

So far, they’ve removed fur, down, a lot of the chemicals that were once present in their jackets; and the next stage is to tackle the issue of massive waste. The fashion industry fuels this, wanting consumers to continue to go out and purchase new clothing, to change their wardrobe every 6 months.

The Next Phase

The goal is now to go from Mass Production to Mass Customisation; shifting to an “on-demand” model where, rather than mass producing items to sell, products are only made when someone wants to buy it. This avoids all of the waste that comes when you don’t sell all of your stock.

Ze-Knit was the first step in that direction:

Napapijri changed the way they produced their clothing, moving to a technique called digital knitting which is very similar to 3D printing. Rather than stitching fabric together, you’re having a machine make a 3D model of the garment in one piece. This means they can cut out stages of the manufacturing process and thus reduce waste by up to 30%.

But this is just the start. Moving forward, the brand wants to make the customer more responsible as well. They’re already looking at ways of encouraging customisation, to produce exactly what the customer wants, only when they want it. If they succeed, the fashion industry will be turned on its head.

Download Rob’s slides: How to Succeed in Times of Change: Take Responsibility

Audio: Don’t Call it a Comeback

Read Time: 3 Minutes

Many assume that when we talk about the origins of audio ads we’re referring to radio ads, but actually back in the 1890s there was a telephone newspaper that would transmit news and entertainment over telephone lines, and brands could pay for a short audio spot to reach those listeners. As other channels grew, respect for audio shrank until it appeared to fade into obscurity. Consider video advertising, particularly on social, where it has become common practise for videos to have subtitles as it is assumed that no-one is listening to the sound anyway.

According to Andrew Henry, VP, Director of Client Services at Joystick, Audio is very different. It represents an intimate space where brands can connect with users unlike ever before. There are 660,000 podcasts currently in production, and Adobe recently reported that most consumers listen to at least 1-5 hours of music or podcasts a week. This is no longer a passive experience.

Voice assistant devices are one of the biggest reasons why audio has re-entered into the conversation, but more than that audio is everywhere. We consume it constantly: in your home, your car, during your commute or even at the gym.

Making the Most of Audio

With this in mind, Andrew offers a number of best practices as brands revisit the humble audio ad:

  • As with all channels, understanding your audience is crucial: personalisation is shown to have a higher engagement rate across all mediums.
  • On top of this, understand the platform you’re working with, be that podcast or music streaming services. Consumption patterns and user context will affect how your ad is received.
  • Keep the placements short and sweet, with a clear call to action and repeating the brand name 2-3 times. This will help your ads have a higher recall rate.
  • Consider the full story of the ad by balancing voiceovers, music and other sound effects.

The Future of Search?

There is an oft-quoted statistic that 30% of searches will be done without a screen by 2020 – but what will that look like? “At its core, voice allows consumers to be more efficient in their day to day, as well as more present in their lives,” states Andrew. 36% of voice-activated speakers say that the main reason for using the device is that it enables them to do things faster, while 69% of users say they use the device while doing other things.

Audio has come full circle, and now offers hugely innovative ad placements ripe for the taking.

Download Andrew’s slides: Audio: Don’t Call it a Comeback

Sustainable Growth in Unstable Times

Read Time: 3 Minutes

It is an understatement to say that digital and technology is central to our lives – and this gives us access to unparalleled amounts of information. The problem with this, states Abigail, Head of Retail at Google Marketing Platform, is that it ends up giving us far too much choice.

We crave the freedom to choose, up to a point. Give us too many options and making a decision becomes mentally fatiguing. Humans have adapted to a point: our brains will seek ways of avoiding that mental strain. “It’s hardly surprising that many of the apps and technologies that have become mainstays of public consciousness are those that help us cut back the scale of choice,” comments Abigail.

Consider those personal curation services like Netflix and Spotify, which use our previous choices to make informed suggestions about similar things we might enjoy. There are also devices and apps that can speed up and simplify payments, or even remove elements of choice altogether, for example, Uber. We love those services which make our lives easier, and they have become the new norm.

Curation was a key element of the promise and proposition of retail, along with price, assortment, and convenience. This refers to things like organising a range of options in a category, leaning on a trusted brand, and giving customers the confidence that they’re being delivered the most relevant options to choose from.

However, in the digital world where we have unlimited visibility over products, services and information, we are now seeing consumers finding their own ways of cutting through the noise and curating for themselves. The problem lies in the amount of work that the consumer still has to do. They are empowered by being able to handle it all themselves, but there are still a lot of choices – they still need help from brands and retailers.

Interestingly enough, around 80% of the UK population is buying online while £8 of every £10 is spent in physical stores – this despite countless headlines telling us that the high street is dying. So, what is going on? Well, the problem might be that we still haven’t managed to nail customer experiences online.

Google calls this the “Age of Assistance”: building a much more integrated and intuitive experience, expecting that this will gradually become much more predictive. How can you apply this across your business? The first step is to accelerate by bringing data into the heart of your business. Next is connect by being present wherever your customer wants to engage. Finally, drive action by delivering amazing assistive experiences.

Download Abigail’s presentation: Sustainable Growth in an Unstable Time