AusTech

Business and Technology Articles Contributed by UWA Students

Month: March 2019

The necessity of digital marketing for all modern businesses

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The world is steadily moving towards a more tech-driven future. This has been a certainty for quite some time now, and we are now currently amid the transitory stage that takes us from here to there. It seems that everywhere we look, we are positively immersed in and surrounded by feats of technological advancement and rapid digitalisation. We have created this world, and we are now navigating our way through what will eventually come to be known as its introductory stages. Presently, tech is all around us. Whole industries have changed, and even the way that those industries advertise has as well. Digital marketing is the new norm, sending some businesses catapulting into infamy and success, and others crumbling to dust in the dark.

If nothing else, it is a certainty that all businesses must now adhere to at least some digital marketing strategies if they want to keep ahead of the game – and of their competition. Some businesses will have someone in their ranks who understands and manages digital marketing prospects quite well, which is a fantastic bonus. And for the companies that are not familiar enough with digital marketing efforts yet to take control of their strategies, getting the professional assistance of a digital marketing agency takes all the guesswork out of the process. So, we know that digital marketing is fast becoming a central advertising and marketing concept across the board, but why?

The world is going digital

We have known for quite a while now that the world is going digital. This has been a virtual certainty for a while, but in these last couple of years it has well and truly sprung into realisation. Surrounding us on all sides, in all regards, streams a consistent thrum of technological advancements and digitalisations. Technology has taken hold, and it now refuses to let go. We have electricity. We have digital entertainment. We even have the beginnings of the autonomous automotive industry. And all of this is only the beginning. So, naturally, of course it comes as next to no surprise (if any at all) that digitalisation has taken hold of marketing as well.

The consumers no longer respond to solely traditional marketing

Modern consumers have grown up and lived amongst high-scale tech and digitalisation for most (if not all) of their lives, and it shows. The traditional marketing concepts and ideals that once held firm and were successful across the board are no longer solely efficient. Of course, traditional marketing still holds its place (and likely always will), but there is the steady understanding that those traditional marketing strategies are no longer enough on their own. Consumers respond best to concepts and strategies that mirror their own lives, and so digital marketing has found its place at long last.

The economy is becoming exceedingly competitive

It is no secret that the economy is becoming even more competitive in the wake of widespread global digitalisation and technological advancement. Having digital marketing on one’s side – and using it exceptionally well – is the way to success and longevity for every business, no matter the industry, these days – and into the future, too. As the marketing landscape becomes more competitive all the time, it pays to know digital marketing in and out, and to be able to utilise it adequately and appropriately.

Digital marketing is changing in 2019

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We have created the world to reflect what we want for our species’ own progression. In this modern world, it goes without saying that technological advancement and digitalisation run the show. We have built up advancements in digitalisation and tech time and again, and the result is the world that surrounds us today. Every industry, every facet of modern life has been changed in some way or another, on the back of this global digitalisation. Even (and especially) the world of business. Take the way that businesses advertise and market these days, for example. The traditional marketing strategies that used to work are no longer solely efficient, if at all.

Businesses have realised the need for a swift change in their advertising and marketing approaches. Digital marketing is the pioneering force in business exposure and brand loyalty now. While everyone knows that digital marketing is the reigning advertising and marketing prospect these days, getting a handle on it is another matter entirely. Sometimes, the professional assistance of a digital marketing agency is one of the best things you can do for your business. But if the budget does not allow to bring in a team or a qualified professional, then there are three digital marketing strategies that are changing the game in 2019. These are the digital marketing concepts that people should be focusing on the most this year, and even going into next year as well.

Social media

It might come as a surprise to some, but social media is one of the strongest digital marketing concepts currently making waves across industries the world over this year. Last year was social media marketing’s big debut as a leading marketing strategy, but this year it is swiftly becoming the central digital marketing component of many businesses (if not all of them). Consumers spend most of their time browsing social media and websites online, and for this reason using social media as a key digital marketing strategy is a stroke of genius for businesses the world over, across varying industries.

Personalisation

Personalised marketing is rising meteorically in terms of relative popularity in business marketing. Put simply, personalised digital marketing is designed to target individuals’ personal interests and hobbies. As a result, the marketing efforts are angled towards items that the individual in question has looked at previously, or similar items. In placing their interests directly in front of them via paid personalised ads on their devices, businesses keep the products they know the customer is responding to in the forefront of that customer’s mind as they spend time online. 

Live videos

Last year, we saw social media start to make impact, and this year that is being taken to a whole new level not only in itself, but through live videos. Consumers love to feel valued and heard by the brands that they give their business to, and live video is an extremely effective way for businesses to establish this type of connection with their consumers. Consumers feel like they are a part of a behind-the-scenes movement, which they love. Additionally, businesses can get a real-time indication of how well live video works for their brand, as the tally of consumers watching, liking, and commenting is constantly updating as the live video streams.

New Trends In Social Media Marketing

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Keeping your business on the cutting edge of social media relevance requires constant effort.  Not only do the algorithms that govern organic reach change over time, but also so do the strategies which are often driven by changes in the platforms themselves. You could stay at the forefront by hiring a social media agency to do all the heavy lifting for you, but you should still try to stay current on what is happening in social media if only to make sure your campaigns are keeping up with the competition. We are going to take a quick tour of some of the trends in social media marketing that you need to be paying attention to.

Social Selling

We all know that the end goal of social media marketing is to generate sales for your business and the way that this was traditionally done was to simply use social media marketing to generate the interest and then plug the leads it creates into a traditional sales funnel. The difference with social selling is that rather using traditional methods like email and telephone calls to nurture the prospect into a client, the social selling sales funnel uses the same social media channels that generated the initial interest as the primary method of contacting the prospect and building the relationship. These could be commenting on a post, tweeting to them or sending a message.

Create Platform-Specific Content

All platforms vary in their audience and understanding which platforms your target audience is using is very important. Of equal importance is also understanding the unique features of that platform and how you can use those features to make your message really stand out. For example if your audience is on Instagram, learning how to use Instagram Stories can make you stand out from those that are just posting pictures and videos. Spend some time exploring all the features of the platform where your audience lives and think about new and creative ways you can use those features to deliver your message. Once you have mastered the features of the platform and developed strategies that are effective they can be used over and over again to generate value for your business.

Social Listening

Advances is analytic tools and AI are making it possible for social marketers to start delivering mass personalisation to their audience. This all starts with mastering the art of social listening. Any top salesperson will tell you that if you listen to your prospect they will tell you exactly how to sell them. With social listening you use the prospects interaction with various social media to build up a profile that will tell you what sort of marketing approach they will be most likely to respond to. Not just in terms of platform, ut also in what content is most likely to connect with them on an emotional level. This may seem very technologically daunting to master but many of the social marketing tool sets are starting to incorporate these kinds of analytics.

5 must-have cooking appliances for the chef at any level

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Whether you are a novice cook about to embark on the fulfilling journey of cooking for others, or if you are the head chef in a contemporary café, technology has made life all the more convenient for all of us in the kitchen. From the invention of fire – which inadvertently created the first chef – to the oven and stovetop, technology has given humanity a wide range of inventions that allow us to be more efficient at what we do. Here are the top five appliances that saves times or increases productivity in the kitchen.

Slow cookers

Also known as Crock Pots, this appliance is a life-saver for busy individuals. Using moist heat on a low temperature to cook food, you can just dump your ingredients into it and come back four to ten hours later and serve a steaming hot meal. Often described as a hands-off cooking tool, you can make almost anything – from roast beef to stews to fancy baby-back-ribs.

Herb grinders

Spice up your annual dishes by adding unique herbs. Instead of using a mortar and pestle, this tool makes grinding up herbs much easier and requires less time. Note that the best grinders are made from wood, metal and acrylic – and it comes in varying two, three and four-part models. Add some dill and tarragon onto your mashed potatoes, red and black pepper to the green beans or some cumin seeds, cinnamon, cloves and anise as the final firework to any pumpkin dish.

Fridge Camera

This appliance will remove the need for grocery lists – it will send pictures of the inside of your fridge directly to your smartphone so you could essentially go to the supermarket whenever convenient rather than planning ahead. This method will help prevent buying the same things over and over again, and you never have to worry about running low on a particular ingredient.

Wireless Thermometer

If you are picky about how your meat is cooked, this technology is perfect for you. Digital thermometers help you determine when your steak, pork tenderloin or turkey is ready for dinner. The traditional method is to insert the thermometer in the thickest part of the meat and check the temperature in several places to ensure that the meat is equally cooked. The wireless option can let you monitor from up to 160 feet away, and it will send a notification to your smartphone when the meat reaches the desired temperature. Therefore, you are free to chop up some vegetables for the side salad while allowing the gadget to keep an eye on your roast for you.

Digital Scale

Skip all the stress and potential messiness you will get by measuring your ingredients out manually and step it up digitally. A digital scale will provide more accurate measurements, as measuring cups and spoons differ from brand to brand. Using one scale will ensure quality control and it can also mean less bowls which means less washing. What a win-win situation.

The three pillars of strong websites in 2019

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We live in a digital age where we are positively immersed and surrounded by technological advancements and digitalisation. Everything has gone digital, in some form or another – especially the way we do business. Websites are the new stores. In short, a website is the modern, digitised equivalent of a storefront window. Thanks to the introduction of the worldwide web, traditional means of business are no longer solely viable. Not only that, but they are increasingly taking the back seat as websites and apps move in to take primary pride of place in the economy the world over. Having a strong website is like having a winning storefront window. This is how consumers first see the business. This is how companies brand themselves in their respective industries. And this is how competitors weigh up the competition.

When it comes to designing a website, there is something to be said about being open to creative miscalculation and growth. It does not matter where in the world the website is being created from. Website design Coffs Harbour can look entirely different aesthetically to a website created in Indonesia or Europe, but there are three key foundations that all websites today must have to be considered strong websites. This is especially true as the virtual landscape of the worldwide web continues to expand exponentially with every passing day, making it a more competitive stratosphere.

Bringing in the bots

We have begun to see the introduction of chatbots and automated emailing systems in recent years, but these concepts are now fundamental necessities of any website, and will remain so going forward. Now that investments and exploration of automated systems and machine learning are gaining traction, we will see the chatbot systems become smarter and more capable, and automated systems become stronger and faster. Having automation and machine learning concepts as part of a website is a marker of a strong website that is ready to ride the waves of tech advancement as they continue to grow.

Mobile-ready design

Having a website is one thing, but having a website that connects to consumers in the strongest ways is another thing entirely. Consider the modern consumer. People are busier than ever, and they spend a lot of their time on the run between work, personal activities, and daily/weekly tasks. So, the only device they usually have on their person always is their smartphone. While desktop-centred website design was smart ten years ago, it is now crucial that websites work with mobile-ready design before anything else. This is the way that consumers are – and will continue to be – looking at businesses the most. Having a website’s design be mobile-ready first and foremost is the best way to reach the most people. If consumers go to a website and it is difficult to navigate on their phone screens, they are more likely to abandon it, regardless of how intrigued they were by the concept in the first place.

Minimalism is more

There is nothing more frustrating that clicking into a site and being bombarded with bright colours, an abundance of information, and no sure-fire signs of how to navigate the website. While it is important to have burst of colour, video and photo imaging when necessary, and information about the business and its services, minimalism is always more. Clean website design with smart overlays is the only way to go. Consumers will rejoice in being able to navigate the website easily, and it will leave a good impression – the perfect cocktail for consumer trust and loyalty.

The Evolution of Blogging

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Blogging has come a long way since its humble beginnings as a personal diary just around the turn of the century. Blogs are a part of mainstream culture today, providing news, forging relationships and building business brands — all at the same time.

Blogging has a recent origin. A college student named Justin Hall created a simple personal site, which contained interesting links and a couple of photos, in the year 1994. The subsequent years witnessed the emergence of blogging platforms, which made it easier for people to create blogs and leave comments on others’ posts. The launch of Technorati, the first blog search engine, in the year 2003 fuelled the growth of blogs further. The arrival of a free and open-source blogging platform called WordPress in 2003 was the real game-changer on the nascent blogging scene. WordPress dramatically expanded the appeal and spread of blogging by facilitating the creation of blogs and even websites without the need to possess prior technical knowledge. Video blogs came into existence a year later in 2004. And the rest is history.

Building a blog for yourself involves some basics. A good command over the language is a given as linguistic errors can seriously dent the credibility of a blogger in the eyes of the readers. Blogging platforms such as WordPress and Blogger are free and easy to use, but knowledge of web designing would go a long way in rendering a blog attractive and interesting. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a vital skill-set for bloggers as the ranking on Google and other search engines are based on the keywords used in the content. Meta-descriptions and one-sentence summary of the blog articles would also go a long way in boosting search engine ranking and attracting a greater number of readers.

Blog posts are considered as the purest form of online content. The written word is the simplest content that can be read, indexed and ranked by Google. Advances in facial recognition are rendering images and videos more search engine-friendly with each passing day, but there is still a long way to go from the speed and ease of comprehending the written word. Blogging does not offer provisions for content filtering, unlike other content platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat and video. Blogs are a critical source of content for social media channels. A single blog post can fuel an endless stream of FB posts, tweets and LinkedIn updates. From the business point of view, a blog presents an ideal platform to tell the story of a brand, connect with the customers and stay ahead of the competition.

Blogs have only been around for 20+ years, but it seems like a lifetime. Some of the early blogging platforms have gone extinct and others such as WordPress have morphed into a thriving content management system. Moving beyond their humble beginnings as glorified online journals, blogs have become a means of self-expression, pursuing the passion for writing, sharing views and conducting business. And the possibilities are truly amazing and endless.

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