Wix vs WordPress: Wix’s Negative Ads against WordPress

wix vs wordpress

On April 6th, 2021, Wix launched series of ads to promote their services on providing website solutions for business. But unfortunately, it did not end up well on some website developers and search marketing communities. Wix’s ads campaign “You Deserve Better” has seen as negative ads against WordPress, and the WordPress community did not feel happy with it.

Who is Wix?

Wix is an Israeli software company, which provided cloud-based web development services. It allows users to create HTML5 websites through the drag and drop tools that already provided.

Wix’s Ads Campaign Caused Anger

Wix’s latest ads campaign causes controversy among search marketing and the website developer’s community. The ads themselves focused on WordPress negatively, and a web developer was coming to a psychiatrist, seeking help for his mental health issues. This portrayal seems caused anger in the WordPress community.

In the ads titled “The Update Button of Doom”, WordPress portrayed as a grotesque person experiencing some glitching during a conversation, and that becomes of the causes that make the web developer experiencing mental health issues. The video ads below have considered typical attack ads.

Through video ads, the “You Deserve Better” campaign by Wix, along with Bose headphone, shipped to some developers and marketing influencers. Most of them are confused with Wix’s approach because they think Wix only wasted their marketing budget by sending those headphones to those not pleased with the campaign.

 

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On the other video titled “White Screen of Death… Is That You?”, “WordPress” was asked by a psychiatrist for the updates, and suddenly he felt sick and dead. The web developer on the ads mentioned that there could be any problem like plugin issue, hosting problem that caused “WordPress” death.

Maya Grill as the representative of Wix, say, “The campaign shows in a clever way that WordPress users don’t need to be stuck in a bad relationship with their platform, and they should consider the alternative which allows them to focus on their actual work,” Grill said. “Each video in the campaign revolves around user pain points, which also highlight Wix’s strengths.”

But instead of a clever way of a marketing campaign, Morten Rand-Hendriksen, one of the influencers who received Bose headphone, said that the campaign was “All Nuclear Troll-Marketing” and indeed not pleased with that.

Anti-Wix Responses Online

As mentioned before, the new ads campaign by Wix has caused furious and Anti-Wix, not only from website developers but also from the search marketing community. Wix’s ad campaign described as distasteful and bashing.

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Meanwhile, Matt Mullenweg, founder of WordPress gave his responses on the Wix’s ads campaign as below,

“Wix is a for-profit company… whose business model is getting customers to pay more and more every year and making it difficult to leave or get a refund. (Don’t take my word for it, look at their investor presentations.)

They are so insecure that they are also the only website creator I’m aware of that doesn’t allow you to export your content, so they’re like a roach motel where you can check in but never check out. Once you buy into their proprietary stack you’re locked in, which even their support documentation admits…

So if we’re comparing website builders to abusive relationships, Wix is one that locks you in the basement and doesn’t let you leave. I’m surprised consumer protection agencies haven’t gone after them.”

Wix vs WordPress Tensions

After all negative comment and responses to Wix’s ads campaign “You Deserve Better”, Avishai Abrahami, as Wix’s CEO, given his responses, by mentioning that Matt Mullenweg is angry and not telling the truth and accusing him by being hypocritical for criticizing Wix for negativity by claiming it was Matt that begun the bitter exchanges by being first to go on a damaging attack.

With the open letter by Wix’s CEO, Wix offers a public apology, as long as from the WordPress side, they also clarify regarding the issue mentioned on the Wix’s ads. Avishai Abrahami said in the open letter that they try to make the ads funny, but if the ads ended up offended the WordPress side, he apologized.

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Positive Campaign and Brand Goodwill

Given the example of how Wix marketing their services with their latest ads campaign, we can all agree that the way of Wix advertise it was terrible and it brings negative assumptions about Wix from the audience. Even Wix mentioned the truth about the issues that WordPress has. But by bashing and imposing other brands to make your brand stand out is not a good marketing campaign. Most consumers will choose a brand that gives them positivity and goodwill through their campaigns or their products while not making other brands looks terrible.

Running a good marketing campaign

If you are running your own business or part of a giant corporation, you understand the need for marketing. It can be an absolute nightmare to navigate the inner working of creating a successful campaign. What would help alleviate this would be someone who could take this burden off your hands.

MIU offers a range of marketing services that will help your company successfully launch and maintain a marketing campaign. With experience and skills, the disasters mentioned above can be avoided with our help. 

Feel free to contact us for a free digital audit or check out MIU’s website to learn more about how we can help you.

What is Clubhouse Marketing?

marketing in clubhouse

Clubhouse is the latest app that has got marketers going crazy over it, and here’s why.

Introduction to Clubhouse

As a social audio chat application, Clubhouse first got widespread attention when Tesla founder Elon Musk tweeted about it to his 40 million followers. It has since been downloaded more than 2 million times on the App Store.

That’s not even the main reason why Clubhouse continued to be wildly popular. As an invite-only app, Clubhouse gave off that exclusive vibe which drew even more people to it as it symbolises status and elitism. To get in, you would have to get an invite from an existing user — and they usually only have two invites each. Furthermore, the discussions that happen are often live and unrecorded, adding to the exclusive feel.

Clubhouse was initially marketed to Silicon Valley investors, top-tier celebrities and influencers, and industry thought leaders. Drake, Oprah Winfrey, and Elon Musk were the first few high-profile users the app saw.

Founded by Paul Davidson, who once worked for big companies like Google and Pinterest, Clubhouse came at the perfect time when the world is still recovering from the pandemic’s effects.

With everyone having more free time to themselves, spending more time alone, and the popularity of podcasts rising, Clubhouse was a social media experiment headed for success. Launched in 2020, Clubhouse provides users with a great platform to make conversation and create a new type of content.

Having a social chat app allows users to multi-task. More importantly, it cuts through the visual noise of an era where so much of the content we consume is carefully curated, edited, and pieced together. With live discussions happening in real-time, Clubhouse offers unfiltered authenticity in a time heavily dominated by visual content. Rather than showing people what you have and hoping for possible engagement, Clubhouse skips all unnecessary steps and straight away gathers people for immediate and direct engagement.

Marketing in Clubhouse, is it possible?

So how can marketers use this to further their needs? Well, we can take a leaf from Tribal Worldwide Singapore’s book — they jumped onto the platform and had potential content strategists pitch for a job at their agency via the app.

But that isn’t the only way.

Premium and luxury brands can host branded events on Clubhouse or even sponsor events related to their industry. As a business leader or a professional in your industry, you can host Clubhouse Rooms to discuss a topic related to your brand, service, or product. By setting yourself to seem like a thought leader, you’ll gain more brand awareness and trust and loyalty amongst your consumers.

Not to mention, as the perfect platform to network, Clubhouse is the best way to meet and connect with some of the most prominent entrepreneurs around the world. Currently, Clubhouse has low dilution and incredible reach, although that might not hold for long — so take advantage of it while you still can. This way, you can use Clubhouse to make your brand feel more personal and humanised and build a new following just from the app itself.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg also mentioned in a Room that his social media company is looking into building its version of an audio platform. And it isn’t just Facebook — Twitter also announced plans for a drop-in audio feature for their app, known as Twitter Spaces. Indeed, the social media audio trend is unlikely to be going away anytime soon.

As such an interactive app, Clubhouse proves to be of great potential with being able to satisfy on-demand consumption of content. Marketers should keep their eyes on the app as there is much more potential for audio marketing trends to be discovered.

If you want to find out more about the new marketing strategy, Contact Us.

Lazada SG Celebrates Its 9th Birthday With Katy Perry, NCT Dream, and More

Lazada is known for having big discounts and huge sales on its site, so it’s no surprise that they are hosting a massive event for their 9th birthday this coming weekend.

Known as Lazada Super Party, this event includes a virtual concert, flash sales, surprise boxes, games, and more. The full performance lineup can be viewed here, although Lazada has already teased us with a few names.

Headlined by Katy Perry and NCT Dream, other local artists such as Jasmine Sokko and Nathan Hortono will also be performing for the virtual concert.

On 26 March at 9:30 pm, Lazada will be streaming this virtual concert via LazLive to countdown to its official birthday which falls on 27 March.

Michelle Chong, Michelle Chong, Michelle Chong, Lee Min-ho are posing for a picture: Lazada Celebrates Its 9th Birthday Sale With A Virtual Concert, Games, Flash Deals, Vouchers

In fact, Lazada will be streaming live performances of various K-Pop idols every Saturday at 8 pm for seven consecutive weeks, starting 20 March. Viewers will be able to partake in games and other giveaways for a chance to win a prize!

Beyond these live streams and performances, Lazada has organised a bunch of pre-sale activities to keep us interested in grabbing ridiculous deals off their site. Before the big day, participate in as many games and activities as you can to obtain vouchers, free shipping, LazCoins and more. These will definitely come in handy during the two-hour storewide flash sale from 12 to 2 am on 27 March!

More than 200 stores are involved in the celebration of Lazada’s 9th birthday, offering more up to a whopping 90% discount on some of their products! The list of participating stores can be found here.

Lazada is definitely going all out for their birthday celebration this year. Indeed, the blend of international celebrities from Katy Perry to NCT Dream to local singers is bound to draw a huge crowd to join in on their festivities.

If you want to find out more about the new marketing strategy, Contact Us.

ECommerce Platforms: WooCommerce vs Shopify vs Magento

For most businesses, an eCommerce platform is one of the best things you can do for your brand. After all, the move to the digital sphere is happening rapidly, particularly in recent years. Maintaining an online presence is the best way to have a global reach.

However, many small businesses looking to start their eCommerce store might find this step a little confusing, not to mention intimidating. Just look at it — there are so many options out there! How would anyone know which is the best option for their brand?

The eCommerce platforms available may seem a little daunting at first, but get to know them a bit more, and you’ll realise how straightforward everything is. WooCommerce, Shopify and Magento are the three most prominent platforms in the eCommerce industry, holding more than 50% of the market share combined. In this article, we’ve broken down the pros and cons of these three major eCommerce platforms to help you decide which you should use.

  • WooCommerce

WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin that brands can use if they have a registered domain for a WordPress website. WordPress is a standard content management system that many brands use. WooCommerce is a popular choice due to its ease of use. The best part is, it’s free!

With roughly 25% of the market share, WooCommerce is used by nearly 3 million sites to date. Although domain name and hosting are not included, this eCommerce platform allows brands to have an unlimited store size and unlimited orders and sales. If you want your own domain name, however, additional investment is required.

Additionally, brands would need to obtain their own Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate, a global standard security technology that enables encrypted information between a web browser and a web server. This decreases the risk of sensitive information being stolen or hacked. WooCommerce supports SSL but does not provide an individual certificate for brands.

There are plenty of extensions and themes you can choose from when using WooCommerce. This allows you some flexibility in your online shop, most of which would be required if you want a functioning store. Of course, keep in mind that some of these extensions and themes are premium and might require payment.

The good thing about WooCommerce is that it has integrated Google Analytics. This means that you’ll keep track of the popular items, which are being dropped, bounce rates, clickthrough rates, and more. Since it is free, WooCommerce is perfect for businesses who are tight with their budget or are just dipping their toes into eCommerce.

  • Shopify

Easily described as the upgraded version of WooCommerce, Shopify offers a few functions and features that are comparable to, if not better, than WooCommerce. However, the downside to Shopify is that it is not free.

The monthly subscription starts from $29 onwards, which allows you a free myshopify.com domain. Alternatively, you can also use your custom domain name. Even though Shopify runs on a monthly subscription, it has over nearly a million users and takes up 20% of the market share.

With Shopify’s high quality hosting services, you do not have to worry about finding a hosting provider or installing any other software since it is all included. This includes unlimited bandwidth, automatic site backups, and more. They also help update and maintain the underlying software for businesses, whereas both WooCommerce and Magento do not.

Since Shopify is a hosted solution, brands would not be able to access the underlying software, unlike when using WooCommerce or Magento. This means that you would most likely not be able to customise your server the way you want it to.

As with WooCommerce, Shopify does some free extensions, although most of them are premium. Additionally, all themes are also premium, so keep that in mind if you want to change your shop interface. Last but not least, Shopify comes with an SSL certificate which is included in their plans.

Shopify is used by the likes of Sephora, Budweiser, Nestle, Tesla, and more. If you want an uncomplicated setup process but desire premium support, this would be an excellent option for you. Even without much technical knowledge, one can easily handle and learn how to get their online store up and run with Shopify.

  • Magento

As a corporate-level eCommerce platform, Magento is adopted by 250,000 websites worldwide and holds a 10% share in the market. Although it seems like a minor player out of the three, do not underestimate this eCommerce platform! Just because it is a niche does not mean it is not as valuable.

In fact, with both free and premium options, Magento offers plenty of support for businesses wanting to start an enterprise-level online store. While the free community version requires you to get a domain name and hosting on your own, the premium version does not.

Again, there are limited extensions and themes that Magento offers for free. Most of the better ones are premium, which means you would need to fork out some money to obtain them. However, Magento has advanced security and updates.

Since it is the most advanced version of the three, it is only natural to wonder what other features they offer. For one, their inventory management system allows them to sync the warehouse stock with the online shop. They also support multiple languages and currencies, which comes in handy for a global business. For a complete list of Magento functions that they offer, visit this link.

With an in-built SEO package and analytic system, Magento is undoubtedly a high-end eCommerce platform highly recommended for established brands or brands looking to branch out. Magento is used by the likes of Nike, Ford, and Christian Louboutin. Remember that there is a steep learning curve for this, as it is more geared towards developers and web development professionals!

All in all, WooCommerce is beginner-friendly and wallet-friendly, whilst Shopify is great for those who want to relinquish control. On the other hand, Magento is perfect for large brands that have the following to back them up. Ultimately, it would be best if you determined which eCommerce platform is best for your business. After all, you know your brand best!

How to Update Your Digital Marketing Strategy

How to Update Your Digital Marketing Strategy

Spring cleaning is a necessary job in any household, but it’s also a necessary job for your digital marketing strategy. Your digital marketing strategy should be checked, measured, and revitalized a few times per year, and the end of the first quarter is the perfect time to take the first steps.

Logo And Design

The first thing to look at is the design aspects of your digital presence. You should check that your logo and designs work across all platforms. Make sure that it’s still relevant and that your customers and potential customers have a positive reaction to your design. You may need to update your logo to give it a fresh look or change any design elements that are outdated and no longer relevant. 

In some cases, you may need to completely redesign your logo. You should also make sure that any changes are also updated on any physical promotional materials as well. Try a free logo app like Logo Creator to come up with some concepts for your business.

Goals

Your digital marketing strategy should have set out goals for your business. You need to look at whether these goals have been achieved. Use your key metrics to analyze what strategies worked well, and which didn’t. You should also assess your previous goals to make sure that they were achievable in the first place.

Set New Goals

When you set your new marketing goals, make sure that they are realistic, specific and achievable. You may also want to consider breaking wide goals down into smaller, more specific steps. Lastly, you should also set a realistic timeline for when you expect these goals to be met. You should have a master calendar for your digital marketing strategy, but you may want to have specific calendars for your social media campaigns, blog posts and email campaigns as well. Doing this means you can make sure that all posts and materials are going out on time.

Social Media Accounts

Social media is constantly evolving and changing with new sites and trends emerging all the time. It’s important that you keep your social media presence updated, relevant, on-trend, and consistent with your brand. This may mean updating profiles, creating new accounts, looking at which posts had the most reach and engagement, and updating your response policies. There are plenty of ways you can boost your social media shares to gain more exposure — check our article here for more details. If customers are reaching out to your business on social media, you need to make sure that responses are timely and appropriate.

SEO

Search engine optimization should be seen as a vital task. It’s incredibly important to keep up to date with SEO practices. These practices can evolve as the way people use search engines change. Check your page speeds, meta descriptions, content, images, readability and headers. Optimize every page. We’ve curated a list of SEO tools here that are not only free but perfect for beginners.

Keywords

Re-examine your keywords. Remove any keywords that are no longer relevant, or have a low or no impression. Create a new list of targeted keywords. This will help you create a much more efficient strategy.

Content

Look at your existing content and see which has the most engagement. Revamp lower performing content with fresh links and keywords. Make sure that the information in older posts is still relevant, or update it to include more recent data. 

You can also plan out new content. Make a calendar of when each content should be posted. When you’re planning topics or posts, make sure that it is specific and readable. Large topics should be broken into a series of posts.

Advertisements

You should also check how your advertisements are performing. Look at your paid search ads. Examine which keywords are being used and if these need to be extended upon. You should also check the ad copy. Make sure that the copy is free of errors and that it is still relevant. For the best results, read up on our ultimate guide to advertising.

6 Content Marketing Trends in 2021

6 Content Marketing Trends in 2021

Content is more often than not the first step in any marketing strategy. Whether you’re dealing with traditional marketing, digital marketing, social media marketing, or SEO, it is a known fact that content can’t be overlooked. In fact, it is a huge part of what drives brand awareness and exposure.

With 2020 throwing all of us into a whirlwind (not literally), content marketing has seen some swift and sudden changes — all in a bid to adapt to the volatile industry. It would not be a surprise if these changes continued their way to 2021. Brands should therefore remain vigilant and adaptable in order to stay relevant.

To help you, here are some content marketing trends we’ve picked out that could surface this coming year.

1. Content relevancy will replace keyword research

I know, I know. Content marketing articles everywhere have drilled into your heads (even ours) that keyword research is of the utmost importance when it comes to SEO.

Want more exposure for your article? Use the most popular keywords. Need a more captivating caption? Throw in the most-searched-for keywords.

Keyword research has driven so much of content marketing thus far, it might feel a little strange to deviate from it. However, Google will soon introduce a new system that ranks your content based on the depth of expertise, rather than other factors such as link building. It is no longer good enough to be able to create content centralised around a certain keyword — but rather, how the content fits into your website.

Backlinking may have been one of the most significant resources when it comes to optimising your SEO strategy. As Google’s machine-learning algorithm becomes smarter about semantics, this might no longer be the case. Instead, link relevancy may become obsolete.

That being said, we are certainly not encouraging you to disregard link building. Keep in mind that this is just one of many possible trends that may arise in 2021. Whether it has yet to prove its worth remains to be seen. Until then, get ready to adapt.

2. Value-driven content will stand out

In an environment where content is everywhere, consumers will not hesitate to drop mediocre content and go for the highly-valued ones. With limited time and attention span, it is up to the brands to showcase their value immediately and keep their consumers engaged.

In this sense, content marketing is often the best way to retain consumers’ attention and provide meaningful content. Currently, plenty of brands are using the tactic of giving out average content for email addresses, in hopes that these will later help in converting the visitors.

Not anymore — 2021 has decided content marketing will be the main strategy in converting potential consumers. If you want your visitors to convert, show them how your product can help address their needs, not just what it can do.

3. Original research will rise in popularity

Sure, the online sphere is already swarming with information with its archive of research content. It would be easy and convenient to push out your own content based on the existing research out there.

However, with the overflow of information, it can be difficult to determine what content is actually relevant and useful in an ever-changing landscape. Coming up with your own studies can actually give you insights into what is relevant to you which may help you more than you realise.

Not to mention, original content that is applicable to your brand may interest your consumers more than over-gargled information. You can even reach out to your consumers to engage them as thought-leaders to create such content!

This informative content can be even repurposed into bite-sized content. Be it in the form of an infographic, video, or charts, having shareable content that allows you to post on your social media platforms can help you garner even more exposure.

4. Increased use of AI

A trend that has been on the rise — be it marketing or otherwise — is that more and more robots are taking over human jobs. In the realm of digital marketing, this often refers to automation.

As technology continues improving, content creation by artificial intelligence (AI) could very well become a thing. Of course, at this level, such content may not necessarily be considered high-quality, but it is a great way for brands to push out consistent content and even increase their content production.

According to participants in a McKinsey study, 20% or more of earnings from brands of different industries are attributed to AI. Indeed, AI and machine learning will no doubt change the way companies produce content. Just as Google is evolving to prioritise content relevancy rather than keyword research, AI will become a significant part of content creation in the years to come. After all, AI is already currently being used in aspects such as content analysis, optimisation and A/B testing.

5. User experience will take on more significance

As the biggest search engine, Google has been the focus of most marketers’ efforts. Therefore to determine what trend would lead 2021, it makes sense to observe Google’s future plans. And they are looking more than ever to cater to their users.

Beyond switching their focus to content relevancy, Google is also beginning to focus more on user experience. This means factors like UI/UX design, the site load time, as well as the delivery of content (for our case, in particular) would also be heavily considered when it comes to search ranking.

Therefore, it is important to focus on the smaller details including your site’s optimisation for mobile devices, image positions and sizes, as well as personalised content. In fact, personalisation more often than not has a positive impact on user experience. So if you want to stay ahead of the game, keep your web design in mind.

6. Advent of content atomation

Content atomation basically refers to the breaking down of long-form content into smaller pieces. With many businesses still struggling to get their content out there particularly in the post-Covid era, this might just be the solution they seek.

By repurposing your primary form of content and giving it a new angle, you can keep it fun and engaging for your audience while still pushing out valuable information.

Breaking down your long-form content doesn’t necessarily have to mean that your audience will see less content than usual. In fact, it is the opposite. Your audience not only gets to sieve out the content they feel is the most interesting, they are also able to absorb the same information in a shorter amount of time — so you’re still providing value to them.

Overall, there is much for us to learn in 2021. Whichever trends arise, the most important trait is for brands to stay adaptable. For now, keep creating high-quality, value-adding content for your audience and your hard work will equally be rewarded.

7 Tips to Boost Your Social Media Shares

7 Tips to Boost Your Social Media Shares

Having a social media strategy is a must when it comes to digital marketing. Just take a look at how much social media has influenced the way we market and communicate!

However, we can all agree that the right social media strategy will bring you the best returns. Not all methods built equally, which is the difference between a good strategy and a bad strategy.

One area to focus on in your social media strategy is the number of shares you accumulate. After all, part of what makes social platforms so powerful is the ability to expand your reach and gain enormous amounts of exposure — only by word-of-mouth. Going “viral” is a thing — and it’s not always bad.

Social shares do precisely that. However, to get the maximum amount of social media shares, there are steps to follow. Results don’t come by easy — they need the effort to achieve it. Here’s what we think can help you get the shares you need.

 

1. Prioritise the most shareable content format

 

This might go without saying, but a lot of times, marketers make the mistake of sharing all forms of content without considering what sort of content they are.

Research has shown that visual content is the most shared on social media, as they are quick to read and easy to digest. TikTok is one such proof that visual content is all the rage right now — look at how rapidly it has grown within the past few years. Sprout Social Index found that of all content that has been shared on social media, 68% of them are images, and 50% are videos.

Use the functions that are already available in these social media platforms to your advantage. For instance, Twitter allowed you to pin one tweet that your followers would see above all else, and Instagram has the Highlights section where your audience can click in to discover more about your brand. So prioritise putting videos and images in these areas for maximum shares.

 

2. Use in-built features to generate responses & increase engagement

 

When we talk about the function, social media platforms are now rolling out many features to cater to the increasing number of brands that use their site. Twitter has an in-built poll feature, as does Instagram. Besides that, Instagram also has a question-and-answer feature for their Stories. Get your audience responding and boost your brand awareness with such features!

LinkedIn also just released a new update where users can add links to their stories as well, to redirect viewers to their site. There are plenty of inbuilt features that you can play around to increase engagement on your social media platforms, so don’t hesitate to try it out!

 

3. Ride the wave on trending topics

 

This is the formula for getting viral — which, as mentioned, is not always bad. Want to score more shares? Find out what are the hot topics and capitalise on that. Better yet, use a popular meme to capture your audience’s attention. Not only does this personalise and humanise your brand, but your audience is also more likely to want to share it around. When you project your brand to be more than just a business-oriented figure, your consumers would be able to relate with you more.

 

4. Craft engaging captions

 

Captions are another essential part of what gets your post noticed. Without a good caption, you would probably lose half your audience. Depending on the platform, you need to adjust your captions accordingly — for example, people go onto Instagram for the pictures, and hence they are more unlikely to want to read a lengthy caption. However, those scrolling on Facebook and LinkedIn would be more open to reading and taking in an enormous amount of text and information.

Whether your caption is long or short, make sure that it includes the keywords that you want to highlight about the post. Furthermore, always remember to put a call-to-action (CTA) at the end of every post to make it more engaging. Whether it is to ask your audience to follow your brand, purchase something, or click a link, we cannot stress enough the importance of having a CTA. Just remember not to overdo it and stick to only one CTA instead of having multiple — that will confuse your audience and result in them not wanting to take any action at all.

 

5. Come up with a strong hashtag strategy

 

Captions aren’t the only things that can help boost your post. Hashtags are just as important when it comes to building up your social media strategy. Using the right hashtags would bring your brand not just more exposure, but the right kind of exposure. An excellent first step is to use your own branded hashtag so that new followers can find your content easily.

Additionally, you can engage in tools to help you find the best hashtags. Our previous blog post talks about some of the best free SEO tools beginners can use so that you can start there. Some helpful tools include All Hashtag’s free hashtag generator and Influencer Marketing Hub’s hashtag generator tool. Others like Sistrix, Kicksta, and HashtagsForLikes are all free as well.

Since Instagram only allows a maximum of 30 hashtags, All Hashtag will give you up to 30 relevant hashtags based on one single keyword. The site also has an analytical tool to help you get useful information about your hashtags for your marketing strategy. And if you’re not sure where to start, they can offer you insights into the top trending hashtags on Instagram. So start exploring and experimenting with some of the incredible free tools out there!

 

6. Make your posts mobile-friendly

 

Let’s face it — most consumers nowadays are scrolling through social media on their phones. More than 80% of shares from social media visits come from mobile devices. To reach them properly, it is exceptionally vital to make sure your social media posts are crafted not just for the desktop version but also for mobile versions.

Take into consideration each platform’s image previews so that the main point comes across in a single glance. Check those graphics are legible (even on a small screen) and zoomable so that your message is readable by your audience — otherwise your words will be for nought.

 

7. Find out when the best times to post are

 

Although this sounds like common sense, you may be surprised to find out how many marketers don’t consider this when planning their marketing strategy. Knowing which days and times your audience are the most active on social media is a crucial step to getting your post noticed.

Sprout Social has an in-depth guide to helping you find out which are the best times to post, depending on the platform you’re using. Of course, this differs based on the industry you’re in and from company to company, so it is best to track your analytics to decide what works for you.

Do also keep in mind that Covid-19 has changed the way consumers use social media and how they engage with brands. For your marketing strategy to work effectively, it is best to adjust your brand behaviour to adapt to such changes. Why not check in with MIU to find out how you can further optimise your marketing strategy? We offer free consultation services for anyone who’s looking to up their marketing game!

Ad Review: Coronavirus Vaccine Confidence Campaign

Ad Review: Coronavirus Vaccine Confidence Campaign

“Because of This” campaign

With the Covid-19 vaccine finally perfected, the next important step for healthcare alliances is to encourage the public to get vaccinated. After all, this would help all individuals alike by reducing the number of Covid cases and improving herd immunity, hopefully eliminating it from existence. Watch as these healthcare alliances take to using touching stories to move us into getting a vaccine.

These public service announcements (PSA) come from Pfizer, BioNTech, as well as other alliances and are aimed to push the American public to get vaccinated. By using an interesting question-and-answer format, the video really highlights how Covid has really done a number on us.

Here’s the twist — the question-and-answer format is done in a reverse manner to drive home our longing for human connection. The question, which is revealed afterwards, then highlights how the vaccine can help make our desires possible.

Sharing clips from the lives of everyday humans adds on to the impact we really feel from these videos. We understand how wonderful it feels to be able to hug someone and see them face-to-face, something that has been restricted a lot since the beginning of the quarantine.

With plenty of groups weighing in on the decision to take the vaccine (particularly on social media), many Americans are on the fence on doing so. This makes the task for the healthcare alliances all the more difficult, but they aren’t giving up. By using four PSAs to emphasise on daily family interactions — ones that we wouldn’t have given a second thought about if it wasn’t for Covid — these alliances are aiming for our hearts in this leg of the campaign.

All PSAs end with the line “Science can make it possible. Only you can make it real.” before directing viewers to websites and links where they can get vaccinated. Here’s another video from part of the same campaign, titled “Hug”, in case you didn’t get how much we have missed living in a pre-Covid era where we took physical connection for granted.

The Privacy Debate: Apple vs Facebook

The Privacy Debate: Apple vs Facebook

In 2020, Apple announced its new product and policy changes at the annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). The announcement happened back in June last year. However, you might not be familiar with it as Apple later decided to push back the changes until early 2021.

Well, 2021 has begun, and the tech giant has decided that it is now the right time to roll out its new software update, which will be available in iOS 14. Known as the Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA), the latest update will require apps to obtain permissions from users before tracking their online activity. IDFA is a unique, random and resettable device identifier (ID) assigned to iOS users.

Privacy is one of Apple’s most well-known core values, and its products include features with innovative privacy techniques. The privacy policy is to minimize and prevent the amount of information accessed by anyone other than the user. After all, their website claims that they believe privacy is “a fundamental human right”.

Apple has incorporated plenty of privacy technologies and functions into many of its in-built apps. These include (but are not limited to):

  • Safari
  • Maps
  • Photos
  • Siri
  • iMessage
  • Wallet & Apple Pay

Listing what privacy technology each app has would take too long and be too much to digest for our short article, so we’ve taken the liberty of linking you to Apple’s website here where they explain in detail how each of their apps protects your privacy.

So what’s the big hoo-ha over Apple’s latest update?

Facebook’s stance

In response to the upcoming iOS update, Facebook ran a few full-page newspaper advertisements attacking Apple’s plans for IDFA and data sharing in December 2020. Claiming to speak on behalf of small businesses, Facebook continued its protests further by publishing a few blog posts and even set up a new website — all in a bid to pressure Apple to retract its pending update as well as to inform everyone of the consequences this might have.

Facebook full page newspaper ad

In December 16th 2020, specifically, Facebook listed 5 points that will be limited by the new update from iOS 14, which are:

  1. Effectively deliver ads to people based on their engagement with your business
  2. Measure and report conversions from specific customers
  3. Ensure your ads shown to the most relevant audiences at the right frequency
  4. Accurately attribute apps install to people using iOS 14 and later
  5. Predict and optimize cost per action over time and efficiently allocate budgets for ads

According to Facebook, such an update will ultimately benefit Apple as small businesses rely on their ability to run personalized ads to survive. Small businesses could see a cut of up to 60% of their website sales from ads since general ads would be less effective than personalized ones. These businesses would turn to charging consumers for subscription fees or adding more in-app purchases to make ends meet.

Therefore, Apple stands to gain from this as it collects commissions from its app store, as per its policy. Furthermore, Apple’s personalized ad platform excluded from its new software update, which only benefits Apple themselves. Not to mention, a subscription-based internet would reduce the quality of free-content and make the internet more expensive.

Facebook has also hosted three webinars to help web and app advertisers prepare for this change, which anyone could sign up for:

“We disagree with Apple’s approach and solution, yet we have no choice but to show Apple’s prompt. If we don’t, they will block Facebook from the App Store, which would only further harm the businesses and users that rely on our services. We cannot take this risk on behalf of the millions of businesses who use our platform to grow.”

– Facebook

Apple’s stance

Apple denounced Facebook’s protests in a statement by claiming that the App Tracking Transparency in iOS 14 does not require Facebook to change its approach to tracking users and creating targeted advertising. It merely requires them to give users a choice.

Interesting enough, users have always been able to opt-out of IDFA tracking, though it is not a well-known fact as the process to do so is rather complicated and difficult to find. With the new update, IDFA will become opt-in rather than opt-out by prompting users to allow tracking. An example of such a prompt can be seen below where users will tell exactly what information an app wishes to tap into.

IDFA tracking

This kind of consent interface is not new, particularly for iOS users. It is also replicated for other permissions such as when an app requests access to your photos, camera, microphone or location. Adding third-party tracking to that list helps protect users from abuse by allowing them to control what each app they use can and should access. AppTrackingTransparency preferences can be set for each app individually or for all apps, depending on the user.

Facebook’s attempt to call Apple out for uprooting small businesses can be seen as hypocritical by some. The media giant has recently faced backlash over the lack of support for small businesses regarding their Facebook Help Centre. Of course, with 10 million advertisers on Facebook, it is inevitable for them to turn to automation to answer the many questions it receives a day.

Additionally, Covid-19 has reduced its regular staff capacity when more businesses than ever are turning to the platform for their promotional efforts. While this may not necessarily be Facebook’s fault, its stance against Apple’s IDFA has many raising questions on how much the media giant actually cares about small businesses.

Top that with the fact that Facebook has a poor track record of anti-competitive behaviour and privacy issues and you might start to side with Apple on their pro-privacy policy changes.

Conclusion

While Apple’s new software changes might seem to be a radical leap, it may not necessarily result in negative consequences in the long run — even for small businesses. After all, the advertising industry has long promoted the notion that personalized and targeted ads are better.

However, several studies have shown that most of the money made from targeted advertising does not in fact reach the creators of the content, including the app developers. More often than not, the profits end up in the pockets of data brokers — companies that collect or buy your personal information to sell it to others.

In reality, small businesses cannot compete with large ad distribution networks, the ones who really get to control the ad industry. Since targeted advertising is seen as superior to other methods of reaching customers, anything else will inherently command less value on ad markets.

This not only means that ads have a lower ad value if they aren’t targeting users, but it also drives the flow of money away from innovation that could otherwise bring us different advertising methods that don’t involve invasive profiling and targeting.

As an example, non-targeted ads such as “contextual” ads could be a good alternative — if only more research and development were done to optimize it. These are ads based not on your personal information but only on the content of the webpage you are visiting at the time.

Of course, there could just as well be a short-term solution to all this — personalized advertising and privacy do not have to be at odds with each other. Small businesses who are worried about the immediate effects such an update might have on them can only hold on to the hope that both Apple and Facebook can find a middle ground for all of this.

6 Best SEO Tools That are Free!

6 Best SEO Tools That are Free!

With more and more brands going digital everyday, it’s extremely important to maintain your online presence amidst the hundreds of other brands out there offering the same service or product to the same consumers.

That’s why it’s not enough to just have a simple marketing strategy. Whatever content you put out online should also be optimised for search engines to get yourself the exposure you seek. Search engine optimisation (SEO) allows you to show up in more results when consumers look for certain keywords, therefore increasing the chances of them clicking into your content.

There are plenty of SEO tools out there to help you get started. We know it may seem overwhelming to decide amongst the numerous tools — therefore we’ve put down a list of free SEO tools that you can try out before you decide to commit to a paid one, if at all. Here are the SEO tools we think are not only helpful, but great for beginners.

1. Google Analytics

5 Google Analytics Loopholes to Close ASAP

Before you can even plan out an SEO strategy, you need to know what are the areas you should improve on. Google Analytics helps you figure out where the traffic flow to your website is coming from so that you can capitalise on it. Furthermore, you can also look at where traffic flow is in a lull so that you can work harder on the SEO for that particular platform.

With Google Analytics, you would be able to gather in-depth details about your website visitors such as the bounce rate, the amount of time they spend on your website, which page content attracts more visitors, and more. These real-time data can also tell you whether your SEO strategy is effective or not, even as you’re optimising it.

All you need is a Google account to sign in to Google Analytics and connect it to your webpage. You can even pair it with Google Search Console, which helps you understand how Google indexes your site. When you use Google Analytics together with Google Console, you can find out information such as the ranking of the content of your webpage, the keywords consumers are using to find your website, as well as the click-through rate for those keywords. You can even diagnose what, if any, technical errors there are on your website!

2. SEM Rush

SEMrush - Review 2019 - PCMag Asia

SEM Rush assists webpage owners with keyword research, content optimisation, SEO audits, rank tracking, and many more. All their functions are accessible with just an account, which is free to create. Features such as their backlink analysis and link building tool can help by giving you an insight into your backlink profile on your webpages.

Although the free version only allows up to 100 domains in the link building tool, you can still use the data to figure out which are the domains and backlinks that have the highest referral score. This enables you to find out the areas in which you need to improve your link building efforts. With time, you can decide if you want to upgrade to the paid version if you find their features extremely helpful.

3. Ubersuggest

Ubersuggest, an essential keyword research tool

Just as its name suggests (no pun intended), Ubersuggest helps users generate content ideas and keywords for you to employ on your website. This is extremely useful for when you’re running out of content ideas for your website and need some fresh suggestions to fill your content calendar.

Ubersuggest also has a feature that can give you an overview of the keyword you’re focusing on. It will not only suggest content ideas based on your keyword, but also show you related keywords that you can use in your content.

4. Rank Math Plugin

RankMath Review - The #1 Exciting WordPress SEO Plugin

If your website uses WordPress to publish its content, Rank Math is a great add-on to have. It allows you to add meta titles and descriptions to your URLs so that people can see the concise version of your web page before clicking in. It also helps you optimise your content and structure your data more efficiently.

To use Rank Math, you simply need to install the plugin to your WordPress website and let it do the work for you. If you indicate which keyword you’re targeting, Rank Math not only suggests ways for you to improve the keyword ranking, but also gives your content an SEO score. Win-win! You can even identify dead links on your site and redirect URLs to new pages with this add-on.

5. Google Trends

How to Use Google Trends for Better SEO | Step-by-Step Guide

Similar to Ubersuggest, Google Trends can help you generate new content ideas by showing you what are the current trends and topics in your industry. Using this knowledge of popular market trends, you can better craft a content marketing strategy and optimise it based on what would draw the crowd.

In fact, Google Trends can also show you how trends change over time and the search patterns involved around it. All you need to do is enter a keyword, and the tool will show you how much interest was generated around that topic, which regions showed the most interest, as well as other related keywords consumers were using. With Google Trends, you can easily compare various trends over an extended period of time.

6. Ahrefs

Ahrefs Review: Features, SEO Tools, Guides, Pricing & | Scripted

Ahrefs offer plenty of free tools, from Content Explorer, to Rank Tracker, to Backlink Checker and more. Ahrefs Backlink Checker works in a way that it analyses a website and shows you the top 100 backlinks of that particular website just by entering an URL into their search bar. You can also view additional information such as the number of backlinks, the domain rating, and the number of referring domains.

They also have a Keyword Explorer and Keyword Generator tool which helps you analyse the ranking difficulty of a particular keyword and calculate their traffic potential. Similar to the Backlink Checker, the Keyword Generator will show you the top 100 related keywords or ideas when you put in a particular keyword that you wish to target. You can also find out their search volume as well as the keyword difficulties for the first 10 keywords on that list, and the top 50 questions related to said keyword.

If you find Ahrefs tools helpful, you can even upgrade to the paid version to unlock more features. However, the free version is a great start to understanding the industry trends and SEO for your own strategy.

Having a great SEO strategy not only increases the discoverability of your brand, but also helps you gain more visibility online. After all, it has been found that 88% of consumers research a brand online before making a purchase. Consumers are now getting smarter and more wise about their purchases, and many are increasingly doing their research online. Therefore, it is vital for a brand to keep their online presence strong with an effective SEO strategy so they can reach a wider audience.

Planning and implementing SEO strategies are but one of the services that MIU provides. If these free SEO tools are not cutting it for you, you can also contact us for a free consultation to see how we can help your business. From digital strategies, to branding, to design, we offer a plethora of services that suit your needs. Click here for more information on what we do and the services we provide.