Tag Archives: marketing

Piers Aitman

Top Tips…Creating An Effective Website

By Piers Aitman

Web developers - not all of them are alike

Not sure what to do about developing your website? Here are some top tips from VG&A’s web associate, Piers Aitman: 

1. What will the website do for you?
Think carefully about your website’s functionality and whether they would be right for your audience. For example, will you need e-commerce or log-in functionality?
Importantly, make sure you have clear calls to action (CTAs) – you want your visitors to get in touch, so make it easy for them. Options to consider include your office telephone number, mobile number, email address, Skype address and business address.

2. Communicate
Visitors to your website will need to understand what you can do for them in a matter of seconds, so this needs to be thought through carefully. Think, too, about the language and the tone which will be appropriate for your audience.
Clearly spell out your offer and what makes you different. Organise your pages and content accordingly and clearly show the user ways to contact you. This helps users navigate their way around your site and is also the basis of search engine optimisation.

3. Get on the right platform
There are many ways of building and maintaining your website within a variety of price points. Some agencies may be keen to channel you into a system that suits them, may be inappropriate in scale, usability or cost and may tie you into working with them for the long term. If you’re not sure, get them to highlight the pros and cons of what they’re suggesting and what it is likely to cost to build, as well as any additional costs, such as hosting.

4. Who are you talking to?
Build your website appropriately for your audience. The design and technical specification may be different for sites viewed predominantly on office or home PCs, for younger or older audiences, people in different countries and so on. It’s vitally important that your site displays well on smartphones and mobile devices, given how their usage has grown.

5. Who will look after the site?
Build in simple and realistic targets for management of updateable content. It’s no use committing to social media content across Facebook and Twitter and not having the resources to update them. Likewise, there’s no point building in bespoke, expensive functionality into your website at the outset which you won’t use.

6. Keep it simple
Usability and responsiveness have long been web design buzzwords. Users love sites that present information simply, are quick to load and easy to navigate. Beautifully designed and unusually structured websites can be great as long as they still provide the user with a quick and intuitive journey to where they want to go.

For a web design template, take a look at our downloads at Don’t Look!

Piers Aitman – Web Associate, VG&A

Vaughan Gordon

Technology for Marketing and Advertising 2011 – links and reviews

By Vaughan Gordon

Technology for Advertising and Marketing logo

Earlier this month the Technology for Marketing and Advertising show took place in London at Earl’s Court 2 exhibition centre.

The event showcases the latest technology innovations in marketing and advertising and features a range of high quality conferece sessions. You can see what you missed at the TFMA 2011 event guide.

Here I have pulled together a range of links to posts and presentations about the event. The aim is to provide a useful round-up.

There was loads of great content generated by TFMA, so whether you are in advertising or marketing or are just keen to see how these channels are developing there should be something of interest here. One thing is for sure – the move is definitely towards integrating social media/network tools into your existing channels.

Mark Galvin’s presentation on the future of customer engagement – The Future of customer engagement

Presentation from Aaron Kahlow on Social Media – empowering people, empowering business

Arjen van den Akker’s slides on content management – Web Content Management at the hub of Web, email and social media insights and engagements

Data Services Inc presentation on International Direct Marketing – International Direct Marketing – find the profits, avoid the problems

Watch a panel discussion on the risks and rewards of Social CRM (needs sign-up and is 46m)

Andrew Davies posts on the Social CRM panel – Forget B2B and B2C. Let’s focus on people not prospects

An immense round-up of the sessions featuring loads of videos from event organisers Technology for Marketing and Advertising

Marketing assassin’s overview of TFMA 2011

Plus posts on:
Leading edge technology: viral video and games at TFMA
Conversion strategy and reputation management: learning at TFMA
Interactive video – trend or gimmick?

Blur Group blog’s review of Facebook’s keynote – Facebook’s keynote: the future of the social web

And their post on Cisco’s keynote – Cisco’s TFMA keynote: connecting people through social media

Kodime review of TFMA – Blog: TFMA recap

GyroHSR’s video of their own Rick Segal on stage at TFMA

Joanna Walters provides her thoughts on the conference – Thoughts from TFMA and – tying social and email together

Press release from organisers – Highlights from Day 1 at TFM&A and Preview of Day 2: Including Facebook, eBay and IDM Keynotes

The Incredibull review of day 2 at TFMA – TFMA Day 2: Social media and the over 30s

The joined-up-marketing blog provides its review of the event – Takeaways from TFMA 2011

Siftmedia on Why the web is getting people away from their desks

Ebay as an advertising platform for brands – video posted by marketing.co.uk

John Goode’s review of the show – TFMA – a black swan event?

Patrick Altoft’s presentation on Link Building Strategies

by Martin Couzins

Martin Couzins

Top Tips…It Pays To Revisit Old Ideas

By Martin Couzins

A recent ad by food producer Yeo Valley demonstrates why it pays to recycle ideas. Yeo Valley says that its Live in Harmony marketing campaign has helped increase sales by 15%. Central to the campaign was this video . . .

Now check out this video, produced more than a year earlier, by the dairy farmers of Ontario . . .

So, why did Yeo Valley succeed in capturing consumers’ attention? Because this was a high budget campaign which was launched with a TV commercial in the first ad break of a new series of X-factor. Yeo Valley demonstrated that delivering the right content in the right format and at the right time works.

Here is one more example of piggy-backing directly off the success of someone else’s campaign.

Martin Couzins, Associate, VG&A