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Digital Upskilling: Invest in Your People

Assess Your Team to Determine Whether You Have a Digital Marketing-Skills Gap
You’ll likely find that your marketing team has a wide range of skills and capabilities. A one-size-fits-all approach rarely works, and you’ll want to maximize any training investment to target the most critical skills.
Look for comprehensive digital skills assessment tools to help gauge your strengths and potential weak spots. Further, seek flexible resources that offer a range of learning options aligned to current industry standards and best practices.
Make Digital Learning Part of How You Operate
The most effective marketers will supplement their technical capabilities with robust skills development programs that help them learn to attain maximum value from their digital tools, using digital best practices that drive business performance.
Upskilling your employees should never really stop because companies should always be evolving and innovating. Digital transformation is, unfortunately, not achieved on a weekend retreat — it should be embedded in your company’s learning practices.
The most successful programs will emphasize structured learning opportunities, access to new content and resources, and on-the-job experience development.
Regards
Team iMET | Academy of Digital-Social Media
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StartUp India

StartUp India is a campaign based on the action plan aimed at the promotion of bank financing for start-up ventures to boost entrepreneurship and encourage start-ups with jobs creation. This campaign was started by PM Narendra Modi on Independence Day in 2015.
India is becoming a hub for budding StartUp Companies, and the dream of making it the biggest and the most successful country is a dream not only supported but also followed by us Indians but the way to all that is by Digitization and Digital marketing.
Digital Marketing plays an important role in the running of StartUp companies as it helps them to grow. Most of the start-ups today are run on internet support. Every start-up has its own website and a mobile application to make it more easy and convenient for the viewer to reach the company for help in a certain department, making it the perfect example of how convenience and technology go hand-in-hand.
As per reports in early 2016, there are 19,000+ start-ups in India and given the pace at which the numbers are increasing, it won’t be surprising enough if the numbers had reached 20,000+ in early 2017. Not only the US but also countries like China and Japan are planning on investing in Indian start-ups as they are some of the most promising ones.
Just knowing what a start-up is, is not enough to make your company successful. What you need to become a successful startup company is to learn and study about it.
There is no denying that Startups in India are booming at a very high pace. Majority of premier Institute pass outs students are now either moving towards Entrepreneurship or are looking toward jobs which are different.
The biggest problem of startups today is implementing a revenue generation plan. One must understand that apart from idea generation, it is very important for a Startup to be profitable as soon as possible.
Government is also taking huge steps in under Startup India. Let us see, how well things turn up in Indian Startup ecosystem.
Regards,
Team iMET | Academy of Digital-Social Media
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Digital Marketing And You

Take any start up today – digital marketing is empowering them to compete against larger, conventional players at a far lower cost. Larger players across IT, healthcare, hospitality, etc., are realizing digital media is ideal to engage and nurture customers for referrals and retention.
Understanding digital marketing
In simplest terms, digital marketing is the art of attracting people in need of your product/service, bringing them to your website or other channels, conveying the message of how you/your company can fulfill their needs, converting them and making them happy.
Earlier, these people used traditional channels but now they spend most of their time in digital and social media.
The need for digital marketing
Digital and social media has changed the way we communicate, research, interact, build relationships and do business. Our behavior has evolved – the way we do day to day activities on our mobile, use apps, website and ease of access to information. Almost any market we target is spending more time online. If we want to target them, we need to understand how each channels work.
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52% of Asia’s population are internet users

Digital marketing is a blanket term for the marketing of products or services using digital technologies, mainly on the Internet, but also including mobile phones, display advertising, and any other digital medium. Development of digital marketing since 1990s and 2000s has changed the brands and businesses way of looking and optimally utilizing it for their marketing purpose.
As a working professional there’s a question in everyone’s mind, “Why is the knowledge of digital marketing necessary for me?” ”Is it relevant to me?” “How will I be able to grow myself by using it?”
Well, there are number of fundamental reasons why people are involving in digital marketing courses.
Advantages of Digital Marketing for Professionals:
· Marketing Professional: Digital marketing is the most sought after skill for any professional, who has a role to play in marketing including media, PR, communication. It’s evident that a marketing professional without digital marketing competency will be left behind in career. On the other hand, a competent digital marketing professional can expect significantly higher growth in terms of salary and the roles s/he can get in the industry. A lot of people with significant experience in conventional marketing (e.g. brand manager) are concerned about their previous experience while considering acquiring digital marketing skills. Interestingly, they are very well positioned to take up senior marketing roles. Why’s that so? It’s not that digital marketing is replacing traditional marketing; rather the role including budget contribution of digital is increasing and marketing is becoming integrated. For high growth startups or large corporations, they need people who’ve experience in conventional marketing and have acquired digital marketing skills.
· Sales Professional: Sales professional form a large category of people who participate in digital marketing course. For entering in the market for sales professionals, it makes sense to consider switching their career to digital marketing. A sales professional can leverage his/her presence on mediums such as LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook for prospect mining or customer engagement.
· Entrepreneur or Business Owner: For any business owner, acquiring new customers is always a priority. Given the growing Internet user base, there’s no better medium than digital media for customer acquisition. Accordingly, digital marketing is one of the most critical skills every entrepreneur needs to acquire today.
· IT Professional: While a digital marketing professional doesn’t need to know technology, a good percentage of IT/Tech background students and professionals are opting to build a career in digital marketing industry. re. Other than communication skills and creativity, analytical skills play an important role in strategizing & executing successful digital marketing campaigns. Engineers or tech people inherently possess strong analytical skills and thus are successful in digital marketing industry. Also, if a senior IT professional, especially the client facing people understand digital media, they are more valuable for their organization as most of the large IT solutions today require integration with digital media. Such client facing IT managers will be more efficient in conceptualizing and developing such solutions if they understand this medium well.
· Business Head: These are the people who are accountable for growth of a business as a whole or for a particular unit. As a part of customer acquisition strategy, they work with external digital marketing agencies or with their internal digital marketing team. While they themselves don’t play an execution role in digital marketing, their involvement in creating digital marketing strategy, defining & reviewing success metrics, identifying & deploying relevant resources for content creation is critical for the success of digital marketing in their organization.
· HR or other Professionals: Since digital media plays a role beyond marketing function, its knowledge is useful for professionals beyond sales & marketing. For e.g., an HR professional can leverage mediums such as Facebook, LinkedIn for employee engagement and talent acquisition.
There are 3 other benefits of doing a digital marketing course, which justify the reasons why a non-marketing professional could be interested in a digital marketing :
Offer digital marketing service as a freelancer: One of the advantages of digital marketing service is that it can be offered remotely. Accordingly, there’s an opportunity to be a freelancer.
· To become an entrepreneur: Fortunately, entrepreneurship is gaining the respect it deserves in developing economies such as India. Digital Marketing is an important skill to realize this dream for anyone who aspires to be an entrepreneur.
· Make money through blogging or affiliate marketing: There are examples of people, who’ve been able to make significant money or build a full-time career in digital marketing.
People with these exceptional assets working in higher growth startups or digital media platform companies such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Google can expect Rs 1 Crore+ salary as well in India.
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Regards

VIRTUAL REALITY in Social Media

vr

The world is one big round place, and the problem is, we’ve not been able to enjoy this while watching movies on television. We’ve been looking at a cropped view of it for way too long.

But thanks to new technology advancements in cameras and online algorithms, we can now enjoy this 360 degree world on our smartphones. We can see in front, back, to the left and right, above and below, in full spherical.

VR in Social Media Industry

“Imagine sharing not just moments with your friends online, but entire experiences and adventures.” That’s what Mark Zuckerberg wrote after Facebook acquired Oculus, the virtual reality company, for $2 billion in 2014.

Facebook has already begun incorporating Oculus technology into its 360 Video. It allow users to experience scenes from different angles (looking right, left, up, down, etc.), on both web and mobile devices, creating a more a new real time experience.

Right now, there’s 360 Video available from The Disney Channel and a really cool clip from Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Expect to see more immersive videos in 2017 as publishers and even brands catch up with the technology and begin creating more 360 degree videos.

Oculus VR has already released a new “social” app called Oculus Social Alpha. The virtual movie-watching app allows you to “sit” in a theater and watch a video in real-time with other users. It is entirely changing the meaning of ‘hangout’.

At the Consumer Electronics Show, 360 video and virtual reality (VR) was the big talk of the show, from huge concerns like YouTube and corporate parent Google, to Facebook’s Oculus Rift and camera makers. VR and 360 were there.

If you are a person who wants to see everything, want to hear everything then you are going to love this new face of social media which is painted in the colors of virtual reality and 360 degree videos.

The biggest news is of the $599 Oculus Rift VR headset,  which is on sale now. With the Rift, gamers will get a much wider and expansive view of their worlds than they’ve ever seen before.

Beyond VR for gaming, social media there is a scope of 360 for photography also.

In a speech, YouTube’s Chief Business Officer Robert Kyncl talked about how VR was going to dramatically change the mobile viewing experience. He parsed the current situation by stating that we currently watch 1.5 hours a day of digital video, compared to five hours daily for TV. But he sees digital video surpassing TV within four years, with VR being a huge driver for the shift.

YouTube, has already made an early bet on 360-degree video because it is the first type of video that actually gives you a better experience on mobile than you can have on desktop or on your TV. And since it’s an open secret that mobile video is exploding, formats that lend themselves to mobile storytelling will grow along with them. And virtual reality is the exactly that person.

Acceptance By the industry

 The filmmakers are not able to dive into 360 in a big way is the limitations of how 360 video gets made. To get the full view, you usually need to use a bunch of cameras tapped together, and then “stitch” or piece the views together in video editing. That process can take hours, days, even weeks.

Several camera manufacturers looked to solve that issue, with small, consumer-grade cameras that are easier to use and promise to eliminate the stitching issues.

With VR you can teleport people into a new experience and blow their minds. It’s not a question of if, but when it will become adopted by consumers. This is the same type of content that’s made GoPro so successful. If we’re not innovating, we cease to be relevant.

Will 2017 be the year when virtual reality becomes a reality or not, the answer lies in the womb of the future

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Social Media and BIG DATA

social-media-marketing-best-practices-with-big-data_bigToday we are surfing on internet, visiting different websites, posting, liking and commenting on events and images of our friend. While all this we are leaving our digital footprint which is converted into data and stored. This data is very precious for companies to understand and target their customers.

Social Media and BIG DATA?

Today an average user has five social media accounts and spends approximately one hour on social media. Most number of Americans get their news from Facebook only.

Everyday social media websites are abuzz with communication around brand. Facebook witnesses millions of likes, posting and people’s reaction to different news and photos. All this creates data in petabytes (1 petabyte = 1000,000 gigabytes). But unlike other data, social websites creates unstructured and uncharacterized data. If you want to get a glimpse of how confusing it can be, go through a twitter feed of any popular brand, and also to its Facebook page among other social profiles (variety in big data) should you wish to be more confused, and then try to make sense of this all from a marketing point of view

All this stands as a testimony of the fact that social media is a big big contributor to the tremendous amount of data produced i.e. Big Data.

Big Data helps in digital marketing by

1. Telling who your customers are

2. How your customers feel

3. What they want

4. Their source of information about your brand

5. How do they arrive at the buying decision

Chinese Social Credit System – a new dystopia for BIG DATA

In some religions there are two angels, one which keeps an account of your good deeds and the other about your bad ones. But in today’s world it is going to be algorithms. Regardless of what one believe, world where our deeds are recorded is in near future. Chinese government has rolled out a social credit system which is going to be compulsory by 2020.

Chinese government has allowed its internet giants, like Alibaba and Tencent only to run and bring this utopia to the realm of existence. Right now they are making the beta version of this system.

Whenever you post something on RenRen or Weibo (which are equivalent to Facebook and micro blogging site Twitter), you will create a data which is going to affect your score. If you’ll post a photo with a person with bad credit score then that also is going to change to your credit score. For making this large amount of data is going to be needed to process. This is going to be provided by Big Data from social media as more and more people are shifting their lives on it.

Big data is going to be a big business, which means ignoring them is not going to be a healthy decision. It will not be wrong to think that the more you learn about your customers the better you will be able to target them with your social media campaign, and seeing the gigantic size of data produced by various social channels, it becomes imperative that you make use of big data in your social media marketing campaigns. By giving you a far deeper understanding of your customers and their relationship with your brand, big data will help you fine tune your social media messages, and choose the right social media platform to disseminate information.

BLOG BUSTER: AGE OF BLOOMING BLOGS

Blog

Today, we know of multi-millionaire bloggers like ScoopWhoop, MouthShut.com, Techcrunch and many more. People loved their content, and these bloggers got really rich and popular.

Blogs came into existence in the 90’s. Back then, blogs were simply used as an online journal for the people to write down their feelings, opinions and personal thoughts.

But now, the importance of blog is much more than just being a hobby. Blogs are efficiently being used by small businessmen, entrepreneurs, various websites as a marketing platform.

Here are few Reasons Why blogs are a Must in Digital Marketing

1. Self-expression

With minimal following, this platform was so easy to use, that it gave a lot of writers an access to build their own audience and gave people a new platform for self-expression to get their word out, which encourages the principles of a Democracy.

2. Business Exposure

The scale of your business doesn’t matter. Blogging and a Digital presence helps you reach your target customers and brings in more customers and hence elevate your sales figures.

3. Community and Network-building

As a businessman, you could build your network. As an artist, you could build your fan-base/audience. You could get direct feedback from your targeted customer. It could help you in fund collection, or help you reach your investor, or could be helpful in raising Public Funds.

Moreover, it becomes a medium of communication with your customers.

As a passionate follower of a particular something/someone, you could meet like-minded people.

4. Branding:

Blogging is an indirect way of branding yourself as artist or a businessman or branding your company or products or services.

5. Google loves content:

Blogging means giving out information, and hence this could increase your website ranking on Google or any other Search Engine. Blogging is one of the finest SEO techniques being used by every big brand and well known websites.

6. Increases Traffic to your website:

It also creates more inbound links pointing to your website, hence making it easier for Google Bots to find your website.

Hence, Blogging is used by all kind of businesses as a marketing platform.

7. Enhances Creativity and Skill:

A blogger is often referred to as an artist. You could start a blog if you think you have good writing skills, but not enough recognition. Or, if you want to improve your writing skills, you could start a blog. Writing about yourself gives you time for self-evaluation and prospection. It is a very useful skill.

8. Spreads knowledge and awareness:

Most importantly, blogging serves the people and help many people to get their opinions out.

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Happy Holidays!!

Big companies Using Digital Marketing and with great effect!

1.      AMEX

The Open Forum website of AMEX is a collaborative website that encourages content on business knowledge and wisdom through industry experts. The magnitude of information on the website makes it popular on various search engines with the benefit of being free of cost to AMEX. This is because, AMEX invites articles rather than paying marketers.

 

2.      The Guardian

The Guardian is highly innovative when it comes to publishing. Its website contains interactive features and responsive content. It manages its marketing strategies in such a way that it can take optimum advantage of SEO and reach international audiences.

 

3.      Red Bull

The company makes full use of YouTube to promote an active and adventurous lifestyle in sync with its own motto. It regularly uploads videos showing stunts and daredevil acts in risky locations.

 

4.      IKEA

Out of all homeware retailers, IKEA ranks high on online experience. It also performs well on conversion rate. The Facebook marketing strategies of the brand are highly successful as they can grab customer nerves. In 2009, it uploaded showroom pictures on a page and allowed netizens to tag themselves on items. The first tag on a product meant the tagger would get it! This became viral.

 

5.      Uber

The customer friendly app is an advertising technique in its own way so much so that the firm does not have to spend huge amounts on marketing. The feature of referral codes in exchange of free rides generates word-of-mouth marketing for the company which spreads like wildfire.

More than 80% of purchases are made through referrals.

 

6.      PlayStation

Sony’s PlayStation YouTube channel is a favourite among gamers. It involves consistency through a fixed logo at the bottom of every video so that the brand image is reinforced every time a video is watched.

 

7.      JetBlue

The company does not use its handles for promotional activity rather it uses them for better customer service. Its responses include @ replies which is unusual in business marketing and provides customers with a great sense of satisfaction and delight. JetBlue knows best that promotional material is boring and what users want is good service.

 

8.      The Shelter Pet Project

It is a pet adoption firm that brings millions of homeless animals to safe hands. They raised awareness about the plight of animals by building a memorable campaign with the help of FB’s Creative Shop.

 

9.      Airbnb

The company has revolutionised travel and booking. Its digital marketing strategies include how to videos, user generated pictures and videos through various social media websites and popular city guides. Its Instagram campaign makes it a travel forum through attention grabbing images of locations mixed with humour.

 

10.  Taco Bell

It is a winner in mobile campaign. Its new app resulted in 3,00,000 downloads on the first day of the launch. Apart from that Taco Bell dominates social media too.

 

11.  Ola

The taxi aggregator targeted raising awareness through its #ChaloNiklo ad campaign using Facebook during the initial days. It tied up with Myntra to launch the lookgood campaign offering free makeover to Ola users. Ola Share and Ola Café are other marketing strategies. It recently advertised through TVF with a video on how to teach your dad to book a cab and is a major funding source for the company.

What affects Digital Marketing?

syndacast.com imet globalDigital marketing exists in an environment which is ever changing and very dynamic. Hence, it becomes unquestioningly important to account for and thereby address the factors affecting it.

Factors affecting digital marketing can be listed as follows:

  • Target Market: The first and foremost thing in my viewpoint is deciding the target market for digital marketing. You cannot randomly serve your advertisements and online content to the millions of internet users available online because that would only lead to more costs for a firm. Also, the content must be aligned to the suitability and interests of your target market.

 

  • Channels: Based on the channel decision, a business will be able to target its potential customers. The online marketing domain covers a wide spectrum of platforms, and many more are emerging with time. A business needs to do conduct a cost –benefit analysis and rank the various mediums on the basis of their cost effectiveness.

 

  • Technology: One of the most important factors affecting digital marketing is technology which needs to be reviewed and updated on a continuous basis. Your in-house internet marketing team must have the technological knowhow. Beyond technical difficulties, companies often have to invest in equipment and services to implement their digital marketing campaigns. For example, a company that wants to do video marketing needs a digital camera, lights and audio recording equipment and the expertise to use it, or must pay a studio to handle the video editing and recording.

 

  • Big Data: Big Data lets you answer the what, how, when and why of digital marketing. Big Data will continue to be an all-powerful and overarching topic among business planners and marketing strategists. As businesses realize that customer behavior and usage data is pivotal for leveraging their overall performance and profit, more businesses will adopt Big Data policies and data acquisition and integration technologies.

 

  • Content: Your digital marketing efforts must include language and images that reflect your target market and resonate with them. Studies have shown that effective content marketing contributes in a great deal to the improvement of consumer conversion and retention.

 

  • Social Media: Social media presence of a business matters a lot. Businesses these days maintain active and healthy social media accounts of their businesses as well ask their employees to do so to engage their customers. Many companies launch online campaigns through social media platforms to attract new customers and retain the existing ones.

 

  • Talent: Everything will out of place if the talent and skills of your digital marketing team are not up to the mark. The human element of digital marketing is actually its backbone. The knowledge and experience you and your team have in digital marketing influences whether or not you incorporate it into your overall marketing strategy. Having a talented workforce is an asset!

 

  • Budget: Digital marketing is cheaper than traditional marketing, but it is definitely not free. Hence, there arises a need to prepare a well-defined budget for digital marketing. A marketer must decide and appropriate mix of organic as well as paid promotions. If budgeting is an issue; as it might be for smaller firms, it is advisable for them to outsource their digital marketing to a business who specializes in this.

 

When all the aforementioned factors are well accounted for and strategies are designed in congruence with them, digital marketing leads a business on the road to success.

Can a new brand launch totally rely on digital marketing?

iMET Global | Academy of Digital Social Media

How do you come to know about a new brand/product launch? Print media? Television advertisements? Word of mouth? Brand launch events? There can be ‘n’ number of ways to do so, but the most popular today definitely has to be digital media. Now, the question that arises is can a brand launch be isolated from all other medias and just be relied on this new platform?

The reality these days is that actually al new brands, from mobile phones to apparels, from cars to computers are first launched digitally. Brands today have shed apprehensions with respect to the digital media. Rather than uploading just a short version of the TV campaign on YouTube, they now launch entire brands through the digital medium. The thing is that out of 1.3 billion people, 275 million are online. What brands are asking today is simple – if 100 million people will buy my product, and if 80-90 per cent of them are web-connected, then why focus anywhere else?
Consider the example of Tata Sky that launched their new product ‘Tata Sky+ Transfer’ which enables set top box recordings to be available on subscribers’ tablets and phones, by veering away from TV and preferred to take the digital-only route to launch their product, whose primary audience is already on the digital platform. Check out the video: https://youtu.be/C5t0g1TjfdM
Earlier, from the corporate perspective, there was pressure to do some 1-2 per cent of digital work, only to please the global ecosystem. But things are no longer the same today, because consumers are living in the digital age and brands are talking to a different set of consumers, whose purchasing patterns and habits have changed. Also, people want to be active and not passive today. They want to react, and the digital platform allows them to interact in the form of Like, Share and Comment. Earlier, TV showed a lot of emotional content and digital was used for commerce and transactional purposes. But if people today are not watching TV, then the digital medium needs to fill the space up by dishing out emotional content.
Social media provides another affective platform for digitally launching a new brand. The snapchat campaign of Burberry is a great example of this. “Digital is a fundamental and integral part of who we are — it’s central to our way of thinking,” said their CEO Christopher Bailey. Burberry secured a prominent spot on Snapchat by running its very own Discover channel for the next 24 hours, an ephemeral native ad with a suite of branded content. The channel, which could be found in the first slot of the Discover tab of Snapchat, was dedicated to promoting Mr. Burberry, the luxury brand’s latest men’s fragrance and accompanying capsule collection and men’s grooming products.
According to Gadekar, Senior Account Manager, Gozoop, digital is dynamic and unlike TV, it allows one to monitor, modify and halt any marketing activities any time one wants. Increasing usage of digital combined with its flexibility has made marketers not only to go digital first but also allocate separate budgets to execute their digital campaigns. Digital is here to stay and will keep getting powerful with time and technology.