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SNP won the marketing election

Email service provider Mailjet has analysed the recent general election campaign and found that if results were based on direct marketing performance alone, the Scottish National Party (SNP) would walk away with a clear victory, ahead of Labour in second place and the Conservatives in third place.

Communications sent out by the major political parties were analysed over a four-week period by marketing experts at Mailjet, who then scored emails on seven separate performance indicators including design, personalisation, cross-channel marketing, automation and creativity of content.

With a total of 29 points up for grabs, the research shows all parties are failing to make use of email communications as effectively as they could to reach voters. In fact, the Conservative Party only sent two emails throughout the four week test period, achieving just 10.5 points, compared to the other parties sending seven on average.

Analysis showed that camping leaders failed to make use of personalisation techniques, with the only details required to sign-up for each party’s emails being name, email address and postcode.

All parties bar Conservatives address emails by individual name, with the Conservatives sending emails as a collective group.

Josie Scotchmer, UK marketing manager at Mailjet, commented:  “The generic mass messages being shared by parties in this snap election show no evidence of audience segmentation to increase the relevance of emails to their recipients. The only use of personalisation was using the first name to address readers; parties fail to take advantage of huge opportunities to resonate with voters based on their location and demographic data.”

When it comes to subject lines the Green Party took the lead, with 2.67 points out of 5, with Labour just ahead of the Conservative party with 2.55 points against the Tories’ 2.5 points.

The experts look at the optimum length, word inclusion, whether subject lines are personal and include a call to action, and whether they’re creative. For example, the Green Party shared an email titled ‘OK I admit it. I’m lonely’ where Caroline Lucas calls on the party’s supporters to elect another MP alongside her.

The Labour party’s email subject lines also include snappy statements such as ‘Dodged questions’, ‘Last chance’ and ‘We will be outspent’ to drive open rates and action from the recipient.

In contrast, the SNP won the majority of their points on core content and call to action, scoring 3.0 out of 5 and 3.27 out of 5 respectively. The party’s emails include video content as well as strong calls to action, asking its subscriber base to volunteer and donate highlighted with the design of buttons. Labour also scored well here, sharing their manifesto amidst the news it had been leaked, and offering branded Labour campaign bags for the supporters quickest to donate.

Two other areas of email marketing the political parties are not utilising at the moment are automation and cross-channel marketing inclusion. For example, social media buttons, redirecting to app or website content were only used by the Scottish National Party and Green Party. The Green Party are also the only candidates showing signs of using automation techniques, but even this was minimal.

Scotchmer concluded: “In failing to adopt automation throughout their election campaigns, these political parties have missed a huge trick. Automation can greatly affect relationships with supporters as they now expect engagement from organisations that is tailored to their interests and delivered in real-time. In addition, it’s not expensive to deliver campaigns in this way; the market for this technology is now competitive and it’s increasingly possible to invest in automation at every level.”

www.mailjet.com

New GDPR legislation creates confusion within the marketing and advertising sector

A survey conducted by YouGov on behalf of law firm Irwin Mitchel has revealed serious confusion regarding General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) legislation within the marketing and advertising sector, less than a year before it comes into force.

GDPR is a regulation by which the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union and the European Commission intend to strengthen and unify data protection for anybody living within the EU.

Companies not upholding legislation could face fines of 20 million euros, or 4% of a company’s global revenue.

The survey of 187 marketing and advertising companies found that 70% of those polled admitted that they wouldn’t be certain of their ability to detect a data breach, while just 37% said they would be equipped to deal with a data breach within the required three day timescale.

Only 34% of advertising firms polled said that they were aware of the GDPR directive. 17% said that they would be forced out of business if they were subject to a fine.

“These results are concerning because with next May’s deadline fast-approaching and with so much at stake, our study reveals there’s a very real possibility that a large number of marketing and advertising firms will not be compliant in time,” Joanne Bone, partner and data protection expert at Irwin Mitchell told The Drum.

“Contrary to popular belief personal data is not just consumer information. It is hard to think of a business today that does not use personal data. Whether you have employee data, customer data or supplier data – if the data relates to an individual you will be caught by the new data protection laws.”

Registration open for the Print & Digital Innovations Summit

The Print & Digital Innovations Summit will take place on November 23rd at the Intercontinental London – The O2, giving the UK’s print and digital marketing communities a unique chance to meet, network and do business.

The event, combining the previously separate Marketing Business Forum and Print Services Summit, has been refactored to better serve the evolving market – your attendance is entirely complimentary, inclusive of one-to-one meetings with trusted solution providers based on mutual interest, educational seminars hosted by industry thought leaders and copious networking opportunities.

To confirm your place online, click here.

The Print & Digital Innovations Summit is structured so that senior marketers like yourself can meet directly with specialist suppliers, who can assist with your current and future needs. But don’t just take our word for it – Here are some thoughts from last year’s delegates:

“The event was beautifully put together, the suppliers were amazing and perfect for what I was looking for”
Anthropologie

“Useful event- well planned, organised and executed”
BT

“A great event to meet new potential suppliers and network with other marketing professionals”
Coats plc

“A thoroughly enjoyable event for both long standing and less experienced print professionals. Well organised and well worth attending”
Bristol- Myers Squibb

“It was the best networking event I have ever been to, very carefully planned according to my needs. I just had to arrive and speak to who I already selected. The 20 minute sessions are not too short and not too long. I found more partners who I am sure I can work together with in the future”
Tastaly

“As a first time visitor to the event and also fairly new to coordinating MandM’s direct mail campaigns, the event was interesting in how it brought together the whole print world spectrum from creative through to delivery.”
MandM Direct

For further information on the Print & Digital Innovations Summit and to book your place, please contact Paige Aitken on 01992 374079 or email p.aitken@forumevents.co.uk.

Forum Insight: Top tips for social media success while attending B2B events

Whether you’re going to a big industry expo, specialist conference or attending one of our Forums or Summits, social media can help you get the most out of the event.

So we’ve pulled together five top tips to get you going…

  1. Get yourself up to date

Whether you’re an attending as a delegate or a supplier, make sure your personal and company social media profiles are up to date.

That’s everything from the logo and description to posting a few things to the account (whether that’s Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn) to make sure it looks active.

Don’t forget, a lot of the people you meet at the event will do some research on you and your company by way of a follow up ­­– you want to ensure they have a great first impression when they stumble across your social media on Google.

If you don’t have a social presence, you really, really, should. It takes no time at all to get the basics set up on Twitter or Facebook and there are plenty of ‘how to’ guides out there if you need some help with brand pages and the like.

  1. Do some research

So your social media accounts are up to date and ready to go, now you need to find out where the conversation’s going to be happening.

Twitter is will be where you’ll see most activity during a live event, so spend a little time before you get there doing some research – find out what the event Twitter handle is (follow it if you haven’t already) and what the official hashtag will be.

Also, make sure follow a few industry media outlets ­– this will help you keep track of what’s happening at the event while you’re ensconced in meetings all day.

  1. Start the pre-event hype

During the lead up to the event let everyone know you’re going – @mention the official account and use the hashtag. Let the world know you’re super-excited, particularly if you’re exhibiting or speaking – tell them what you’re going to being talking about or the products you’re going to be showing off. You can do this across Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

Also, think about using a company or campaign hashtag if you’re going to be doing special promotions during the event.

If you are promoting specific products or services, create a landing page on your website with data capture, just for the event in question – you can then push people there via social media so they can request more info.

  1. On the day…

The first thing to do is to check yourself in virtually across your social accounts – you’re in the building and you’re ready for business.

Now, if you have a busy event itinerary you’re not necessary going to have time to live tweet the entire thing. If that’s the case, say it with pictures – busy stand? Take a picture. See a great product on display? Take a picture. Sitting in an interesting conference session? Take a picture. It’s a quick and engaging way of getting your message across.

And if you spot something compelling, post a video.

You can also schedule posts in advance using tools such as Tweetdeck or Hootsuite. This is particularly useful if you’re trying to drive stand traffic or promoting products – and don’t forget to push people back to that website landing page.

Keep an eye on those industry news feeds – retweet or pass comment on any big announcements and get involved in the conversation.

  1. After the event

This is when you can have some fun. If you have a company blog, write up your experiences of the event. You don’t have to write an essay – 350-500 words would be sufficient – and then push that article out across your Twitter, Facebook and Linked in accounts.

Perhaps the most important post-event task is to follow up on all those delicious new leads and contacts you made – make sure you follow and like their social media accounts, both personal and company.

Finally, it’s worth searching the event hashtag and scrolling back through its timeline to catch up on the show news and, perhaps more importantly, see what your industry peers were up to…

Red Bull named 2016’s most sharable brand

Energy drink giant Red Bull has been declared last year’s most sharable brand, according to new figures by Unruly.

As part of Unruly’s annual round-up, the video ad tech company has compiled a list of the top ten video campaigns to be shared on social media throughout the year.

Red Bull failed to even reach the top ten most shared single ads of 2016, with that accolade being awarded to John Lewis’ Buster The Boxer Christmas Campaign.

Instead, the global drinks manufacturer was able to secure first place through a constant stream of released content as the company reportedly uploaded hundreds of videos over the course of the year.

The top three brands shared also included Samsung, followed by McDonald’s. From last year’s second place, Red Bull soared into first this year, beating Samsung’s shares by around 15 million.

“The winners hit the mark by creating highly emotional ads that resonated with viewers,” according to Unruly’s SVP Insights and Marketing, US, Devra Prywes, “we have a truly global list of top brands, many of which created videos specifically for and released in individual territories topping the list.”

Unruly held a ‘virtual award’ ceremony live on Twitter, announcing the winners for a number of categories, including Emotional Ad and Most Inspiring Video, all of which can be viewed here

 

The next stage of software automation

Digital engagement specialist Parker Software has released ThinkAutomation 4.0, a sweeping update to the company’s leading business automation software. The upgrade adds extensive new functionality to the product, such as sentiment analysis, social media monitoring and SMS-driven automation, making it ideal for logistics, marketing and retail businesses looking to streamline processes. 

ThinkAutomation allows businesses to increase efficiency by automating tasks and processing documents and inbound messages. Version 4.0 builds on these functions with advanced document processing, which allows automatic conversion of file formats as well as attachment analysis, and SMS hotline functionality that can improve business communications.

Automated SMS functionality allows businesses to update systems via text. This is achieved by establishing hubs to receive specific messages, such as internal communications and delivery enquiries. Customers and employees text these numbers with enquiries or updates and ThinkAutomation sends personalised responses, as well as updating all relevant systems and databases.

“The development of business technology has meant that offices now operate in environments that are increasingly hectic and process-intensive,” explained Howard Williams, marketing director of Parker Software. “The latest update to ThinkAutomation adds more capabilities for the software to help businesses cut through the noise and stay on top of what really matters.

“Almost everybody has a mobile phone now, whether it’s a smartphone or a more traditional device. The introduction of SMS to database functionality in our software means that tasks can be streamlined more than ever before. Curious customers or ill employees will no longer have to navigate complex procedures, they simply send a message on-the-go and ThinkAutomation handles the rest. It’s a convenient business solution for the twenty-first century.”

The software also provides businesses the ability to monitor how people are responding to their brand more closely through sentiment analysis and social media monitoring. By setting the software up to process inbound data from social media accounts, ThinkAutomation can respond to key words and phrases and action them accordingly – either by notifying relevant personnel or by delivering automated responses.

“The rise of social media and internet forums has meant that customers have more platforms than ever before to review businesses in a negative light – with ever growing audiences,” continued Williams. “This poses a problem to businesses in that the vast quantity of data generated by monitoring company mentions is not only daunting but, for a large percentage, not meaningful or useful.

“Sentiment analysis allows businesses to break down online interactions by specific search strings, individually highlighting both the positive and negative content. This can then be automatically responded to with keyword recognition and pre-determined answers, or even create a new entry in a database.”

Welcome to the new Digital Marketing Solutions Summit!

The Digital Marketing Solutions Summit is set to take place on May 8th at London’s Grange Tower Bridge Hotel.

Formerly known as the Internet Marketing Summit, the event will once again match senior marketing professionals with leading product and service providers for a day of match-made business meetings.

Last year the event attracted over 65 senior professionals from the likes of Bupa, Lloyds Bank, Tesco, Hilton, BT, Vision Express, Investec, Legal & General, MetLife, Paragon and more meet and network with companies including Amobee, Click Consult, Adestra, Redfish Group, King Content, Yoyo Design and Soak to discuss their respective requirements.

Attending the event is free for all marketing professionals and your complimentary place includes lunch and all refreshments throughout the day. You’ll also get access to a seminar programme covering topics including Web Analytics and Search Engine Optimisation, Content Marketing and Email Marketing.

 

To find out more about attending, contact Kerry Naumburger on 01992 374099 or email k.naumburger@forumevents.co.uk.

 

A number of supplier packages are available for companies looking to meet with some of the UK’s leading marketeers. Contact Carlos Dieguez on 01992 374091 or via c.dieguez@forumevents.co.uk to find out more.

 

Mailjet crowns Waitrose winner of best Christmas email campaign…

The email service provider Mailjet has revealed that Waitrose is ahead of its competitor supermarkets in the email campaign stakes, analysing key metrics including the chain’s subject lines, automation, cross-channel marketing and personalisation.

Reaching a total score of 21.3 points out of an available 29.0, this marks the second consecutive victory for Waitrose in the study and represents a significant improvement on supermarket’s performance from last year, rising 10 per cent overall.

Mid-market brands Tesco and Asda closely followed Waitrose’s success, hitting 20.0 and 19.9 respectively, however, Marks & Spencer struggled to compete scoring just 17.4 in total.

With regards to emails prospecting new consumer audiences, the research places Morrisons and Sainsbury’s joint last as both failed to send any communications to consumers who haven’t yet purchased through their online shopping platforms.

Josie Scotchmer, UK marketing manager at Mailjet said: “Consumers buy from the brands they build emotional connections with, particularly during the Christmas season. With low scores in critical areas for digital marketing like personalisation and automation, many supermarkets are not making the most of their emails to engage consumers with powerful storytelling.

As Mailjet suggests there has been much discussion on the importance of campaign personalisation this year, just two of the total eight supermarkets surveyed registered a score above 0.0. Specifically, Asda fell short on the top spot for its lack of personalisation, losing five points by omitting any room to add personal messaging to the email in favour of a singularly product-focused, visual structure.

Scotchmer added: “Winning greater share of the market in run up to Christmas holiday relies on having an online and offline campaign that fires on all cylinders. There are opportunities for all of these brands to learn from one another and broaden their use of digital strategies to engage and build loyalty with consumers at this critical period in the retail calendar.”

ANA members vote Transparency as ‘Marketing Word of the Year’…

Members of the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) in the US have voted the word transparency as the ‘Marketing Word of the Year’. 

During the week commencing November 28, the ANA surveyed its members online and asked them to vote on the ‘Marketing Word of the Year’ from a list of finalists prepared by the association’s staff. A total of 267 members participated and ‘transparency’ received the most votes.

A representative selection of verbatim comments from ANA members include: [Transparency] is the single most important issue in marketing and has the greatest potential benefit in terms of improving marketing ROI; [Transparency] or lack of, defines all media agency relationships and provides a new perspective to consider these relationships; and [Transparency] affects everything we communicate in marketing, from our product formulations and labels to how we communicate in all channels to our internal culture.

Bob Liodice, CEO at ANA said: “It’s no surprise that our members chose transparency the Marketing Word of the Year. Our media transparency study was one of our most important initiatives and it sparked fundamental behavioral changes among marketers and in the industry, here and around the world.” 

Other top choices considered by ANA members were customer experiencecontent marketing, influencer, and programmatic. It was the third consecutive year the ANA announced a ‘Marketing Word of the Year’. Previous winners were content marketing in 2015 and programmatic in 2014. 

 

Gender inequality experienced by nearly half of female marketers…

The Marketing Society Scotland has found that almost half (48 per cent) of female marketers in the country have experienced gender inequality in the workplace during their careers, compared to just 16 per cent of their male counterparts.

TheMind the Gap‘ project indicates unfair treatment to be a major concern, with 53 per cent of females and 79 per cent of male marketers agreeing with the statement that both are treated equally in the workplace. In addition, just 29 per cent of females believe they are equally paid to their male colleagues, compared with 59 per cent of males.  

Helen Campbell, chair of the Marketing Society Scotland and head of global brand and marketing communications at VisitScotland, said: “The Inspiring Women initiative is borne out of a recognition that as a marketing community we must work harder to ensure greater equality in the workplace, at all levels.

“Where there is inequality we need to understand why and most importantly take proactive steps to address it. Now is the time to work smarter and harder to build a more balanced marketing community and culture.” 

Furthermore, nine percent of females and 29 per cent of males think that both genders are equally represented at all levels in marketing and agency jobs in Scotland. 

Scotland is reported to have the worst gender pay gap in the UK and, of the Scottish based companies in the FTSE 100, only 25 per cent of board positions are held by females. 

 
Learn more about ‘Mind the Gap‘ here