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How to collect quality data in the real world: Methodology

Very often, us digital marketers resort to online surveys to collect data, in the form of Questionnaire, Facebook Polls, Insta instant questions or those silent YouTube pre-video survey ads. However, recently we decided to go grass-root instead to conduct an extensive data collection activity, simply because we realised the need to ‘keeping the data real’ and focused more on ‘quality of responses

Here goes a glimpse of the methodology behind on-ground data collection and hoping you have some takeaways from here.

Project: Increasing voter turnout in the upcoming BBMP elections in August 2020

Objective: Understand the reasons for low voter turnout

Geography: Out of the 198 wards in Bangalore, we chose Ulsoor ward to start off with, due to ease of access

Step 1: File an RTI

We filed an RTI (Right To Information) to get cracking.

Under RTI, very Government Department allocates a PIO (Public Information Officer) and it is the officer of that Department that one needs to work with to get the required information. Usually a timeframe of 30 days is assigned to close the case. 

We handed over the charge to a Journalism and Media Intern working with 101 Reporters to use her local language skills and put her journalism knowledge to practical use. Divya visited the BBMP Head Office situated at the Corporation Circle, at least 4 – 5 times over that month to get the work done. Consistent ‘follow-ups’ is a must and knowing the local language to build a working relationship with the local authorities is a compulsive requirement in this case.

Step 2: Design the Questionnaire

Your survey questions are the foundation to collect good data.

While we already knew this fact, we realised it even so while conducting the survey on-ground.On designing the survey, keep in mind the translation of the questions in the form of a conversation. Keep it smart, simple and relatable. We knew the non-negotiables of the data we wanted (like age, smartphone device owner and language) and designed some of the questions accordingly.

The most critical question was if the member voted before at the ‘Corporator elections’ and if no, what is the reason/s behind not voting.

The Questionnaire went through 2 iterations while conducting the survey. Interestingly, the reason was the reaction of the people when asked if they voted or not. Human psyche often forces us to give the ‘acceptable’ or ‘politically correct’ response. In our experience, some of the people found the question intimidating and the initial response would be a lie or pure ignorance to the respondents.

We then course corrected and eased out the release of the question in the form of a conversation. We first explained why we are here and what are we attempting to do and that our data shows that close to 50% of people living in Bangalore do not vote in the local BBMP elections. This helped us break the ice and demonstrate our genuine intent.

This is how our questionnaire looked:

Step 3: Launch the Operation

We then received from the BBMP office, thanks to the RTI – exhaustive, ward wise data files in a pen drive that seemed like the data was untouched, abandoned before 😊

Here’s a sample of how the resident data of the CV Raman Nagar ward looks like:

Our choice of ward i.e. ‘Ulsoor’ ward has an occupancy of over 30000 people and while it’s desirable, it is impossible to interview all 30000 people. So we assigned a team of university interns managed by 2 rotating editorial staff to conduct the activity. The interns were but of course paid for the well-deserved hard work put in.

A Team of 4, a Timeline 2 weeks and 900 responses recorded!

Going house to house was no doubt tiring, however the insights gathered while collecting the data has been incredibly useful. These takeaways will be taken into consideration when we put our thinking caps to design the campaign communication strategy. The lady who relentlessly drove the project’s operations is Rebecca from 101 Reporters. 

Step 4: Data Entry

A tiresome, manual labour part of any data collection drive is to record the entries. 900 responses is clearly not a joke, however we finished it in half a day. (yeayy)

Every step of this drive opens a gamut of loopholes, however accuracy and being conscious is the key to collecting the right data.

We are now all set to launch an informed Beta version of our campaign and create positive impact 😊 *Fingers and toes crossed

Next update on the BBMP Elections Project coming up soon this Independence Day.

Stay tuned.


BetaLabs 04: Webinar Promotion Insights

AARRRmor conducted a webinar on 1st August 2019 on a digital subject that’s useful for small business owners, start-up founders, entrepreneurs. The topic was ‘Google’s Essentials’ for small businesses, that covered the basics of how Google Analytics (GA), Google Search Console (GSC) and Google Adwords work and are interrelated. 

You may find it ironic for a digital media agency to be taking up workshops / training on digital tools. But the idea is to teach our clients to be self-sustained and knowledgeable. Growth works two ways! 

Aarrrmor’s Webinar on Google Essentials

As we move forward, let’s refresh our mind and quickly recall the Essential tools:

  • Google Analytics

GA is a tool with behavioural insights about the users visiting the website. Their journey across the site from the time of landing to exit and everything that happens in between that. Sessions, pageviews, time spent, page wise analytics, devices used, location, clicks on buttons, etc.

It helps you to understand the drivers behind the traffic to your site, which activities, campaigns / ads / content pieces are working better. Also, This will help you to understand which channels and campaigns are working for you.

  • Google Search Console (GSC)

GSC on the other hand is a tool with more of technical insights about the website’s health, and all things happening behind the scenes. Such as which are the links that are connected to your site, which keywords are ranking better for your site, more information on indexing etc. It also provides recommendations on improving them.

The best part about both GA and GSC is its agility and flexibility to merge with third party tools like SEMrush, for better synergy. 

  • Google Ads

Google Adwords and Keyword planner are like soul sisters, they are interdependent and work the magic. Simply put, Adwords is the platform for you to reach audiences that are looking for a product / piece of information like that of your business. The budgetary flexibilities are just brilliant. 

Webinar Promotion Plan

Now the work doesn’t end here. Our work was about getting the word out about the webinar to as many of our target audience as possible through organic reach for starters. 

Platform to conduct Webinar

In our checklist, we first finalised which platform to host the webinar on. After reviewing many websites we shortlisted Zoom and Hangouts as options and even debated the idea of going LIVE on YouTube or Facebook. However, we chose Zoom to host the webinar as it didn’t have a cap on the number of attendees and just Plug and Play. 

Webinar Listing

To promote the webinar organically, its best to start with a simple plan and a list for reachouts – most critical. And so we first listed the event on 2 sites i.e. Townscript and Eventshigh along with Google and Facebook event pages. 

PS: since August end, Townscript and Eventshigh have begun to charge a fee to host free listings. 

We learnt that, even a simple topic like ‘Webinar on Google Essentials’ is something that most new marketers get confused about. However, after attending the webinar, the attendees have learnt to set up their own Ad account, understand GA (Google Analytics) and operating Search Console. 

Our Conclusions

Qualitative feedback from them have motivated us to keep going with another batch of webinars.  The best part was, this webinar converted into a long term lead for us. Therefore to conclude, we would say organic isn’t dead yet. 

BetaLabs 03: Learn Google Essentials to grow your business

Recently Aarrrmor Digital conducted a Live Online Webinar on Google Essentials, where we shared how to use Google Essential tools to grow businesses

This was a basic information session and since we couldn’t cover a lot, we are writing this blog post.

In the webinar, we covered basics and fundamentals on how to setup Google Analytics, Google Search Console and Google Ads.

Did you just start your online journey?

Built a new website and getting started seriously with your online presence?

Go through the webinar recording in the end of the article that shows you how to setup these tools.

Get over your mental block around these tools.

Why should you use Google Essential Tools?

Because they’re free!

That’s the most important reason and they give a good amount of data relevant for most small businesses.

The biggest reason for sharing this post is to get entrepreneurs and business owners started.

We have seen that a lot of businesses miss this important step

And when you don’t have these tools, you don’t have data.

Without data, it’s difficult to work on growing your business, because any marketing, sales activities need data.

Another reason not to miss out on this is that you start getting data from the day you set up the tools.

There is nothing recorded before that, so start recording data today.

And hopefully after a month you will have something actionable.

The 1st thing that Aarrrmor Digital does on onboarding a new client is check their analytics and tool setup. If there’s any imprecations, we fix them and if they are not setup, we set them.

Because we believe in the importance of these free tools for businesses, we recommend you to get started right away for seriously growing your business.

Setting up of tools is not tough!

There’s a common misconception around tools and technologies that they are tough to setup.

But we know that if you’re smart enough to start your own business then this is not your biggest challenge. And if you have any questions or need assistance, we’re always there to help you out.

These tools will give you information about where people are coming to your website from, what are the sources, once they land on website, which pages they visit, how long they stay there for, what actions they take.

Based on this analysis, you can figure out where to make improvements.

Slides for Aarrrmor Webinar on Google Essentials

Google Business Essential Tools: An Overview

Google Analytics:

This free tool is wonderful! It gives details about users, website, page speed and experience & is #1 in the list of tools to integrate for your website.

To begin with, it gives you real time information of your visitors. How cool is that? It tells you where they are coming from, which device and which page they’re on

Next, you can see for any period of time who your audience is. Details about them like demographics, geography, device and technology they use. You will know what channel and campaigns are working for you. You can set up different actions as goals and trace the path that your users follow to complete them. This and many more awesome things!

Google Search Console:

This free tool sounds a bit technical, but it’s not really much. If you want to work on making your website more “Google-friendly”, this tool is a must have.

Check who is linking back to your website, what keywords your website (&pages) are ranking for. Find out any technical issues Google faces in reading your website and get recommendations on how to improve them.

You can work on your website architecture and monitor improvements using your Search Console. All the data here is more than enough for your developer, SEO marketer to improve the visibility of your website for the desired key words and phrases for your business.

Google Ads:

Scared of Ads? Don’t worry many people are…There is a common misconception that they cost a lot of money and how it works is a mystery.

We suggest you get started, and don’t spend money unless you’re ready to. To start with Google Ads, you might have to enter billing information but you don’t have to spend anything if you don’t want to.

So, play around with the tools, check out keyword planner (mini tool) and see what suits you. If you wish, you can run small (INR 100/day) test campaigns, you can pause or end them whenever you like. This way you will get over your fear of the tool and get a better sense of how they work.

Login with your own Google account in all of these tools.

Preferably use your work account, because these tools will send reports which are best if you send it to your business account.

Aarrrmor Webinar (Recorded Version) on Google Essential Tools

BetaLabs 02: Audience Insights on New Mothers living in India

The success of your ad strongly depends upon the choice of content and the fine-tuning of your audience segment on digital channels.

While you may have heard this piece of advice before, but not many utilise the audience targeting elements that Facebook gives.

We at AARRRMOR absolutely enjoy constructing the audience model to as much perfection as we can, it’s like cooking your best meal for your favourite guest.

We decided to do some market research, understanding the best way to reach prospective customers from different industries and launched this series of experiment with one of our clients.

Why Facebook?

Well for starters, Facebook and Google are the largest, most frequently used ad platforms out there and while their targeting options are strikingly different from each other, we chose Facebook for this as our client’s TG (target audience) is most interactive on the Facebook ad platforms. (Our next post will cover the difference in the 2 ad platforms for the same audience)

For this post, our client is a professional baby and maternity photographer based out of Delhi NCR, who wants to create awareness among the ‘primary’ and partially the ‘secondary’ decision makers for her business i.e. Expecting Mothers, Newly delivered mothers and Husbands of these 2 categories.

Details of Campaign

Location: Delhi NCR, Noida and around
Category: Expecting Mothers, New Mothers, Mothers with kids
Campaign Objective: Drive Leads
Ad objective: Chose ‘Traffic to website’. Wanted to choose ‘Lead Generation’

Ad Placement: Instagram feed and stories

Learning: The client’s website didn’t have a ‘Privacy Policy’ web-page due to which we couldn’t run the lead gen ads. While that page is constructed, we decided to test the waters for a traffic to website conversion.

Recipe to our audience targeting: Facebook gives you the option to choose from Behavior, Life Events, Interests. We strategically used all three.

More details below:

Channel & Objective

Aarrrmor BetaLabs 02: Channel & Objective

Target Audience

Aarrrmor BetaLabs 02: Target Audience

Creative

Aarrrmor BetaLabs 02: Creatives

Instagram Story Ad

Aarrrmor BetaLabs 02: Instagram Story Ad

Ad Copy

Aarrrmor BetaLabs 02: Ad Copy

Audience Segmentation

Aarrrmor BetaLabs 02: Audience Segmentation

Results

Aarrrmor BetaLabs 02: Results

Conversions

Aarrrmor BetaLabs 02: Conversions

Want to contribute to our BetaLabs Experiment? Send us your ideas, data or research and we’d be happy to publish it.


List of Top Online Social Media Courses

Recently, a friend asked for recommendations on social media courses.

(Secret: She’s an ex-aarrrmor client)

Obviously, we helped 🙂

To start with, we did our internet search and found out all the popular courses. Next, we turned to our trusted /r/socialmedia community on Reddit and collected their reviews.

We understood that this list is not complete without reviews or without finding out which level of understanding they are most suitable for.

So, we have listed out some of the best ones we found here and we are accepting recommendations, reviews and more additions to our list.

Hubspot Academyhttps://academy.hubspot.com/courses/social-mediaSocial MediaFREE Certification Course
Hubspot Academyhttps://www.hubspot.com/resources/courses/social-mediaSocial MediaFREE Certification Courses
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/business/learnShort online courses.

Build your business and reach more customers with free, five-minute lessons.
FREE
Facebookhttps://www.facebookblueprint.com/student/catalog?fbclid=IwAR2zuDidauFQCJ8WDavsnmv4gA_Mb8S3yrnbvSElIDsYa_ig9SLeHOhOEz8For professional level courses, browse our lessons designed for advanced digital marketers.FREE
Hootsuite Academyhttps://education.hootsuite.com/collectionsMaster new social media skills with online courses taught by industry pros.FREE/Paid
Google Digital Academyhttps://learndigital.withgoogle.com/digitalunlocked/courses/digital_marketingDiscover a range of free learning content designed to help grow your business or jumpstart your career. You can learn by selecting individual modules, or dive right in and take an entire course end-to-end.FREE
Courserahttps://www.coursera.org/courses?query=social%20media%20marketingFREE/Paid
Courserahttps://www.coursera.org/specializations/social-media-marketingSocial Media Marketing SpecializationFREE
EdXhttps://www.edx.org/learn/social-media-marketingSocial Media Marketing Courses: Learn social media marketing best practices and strategies with free online courses from Boston University, UBC, Curtin and other top schools and institutions. Learn social media marketing tools and tactics to build your online marketing knowledge and advance your career.
Linkedin learninghttps://www.linkedin.com/learning/topics/social-media-marketingSocial Media Marketing
Get the training you need to stay ahead with expert-led courses on Social Media Marketing.
FREE
Udemyhttps://www.udemy.com/learn-social-media-marketing-course/Social Media Marketing – Complete Certificate Course
The comprehensive social media course, beginner to advanced. Go viral, get started today!
Paid
Gen M https://genm.co/program/social-media-marketingSocial Media
Grow small businesses with social media
FREE
Skillsharehttps://www.skillshare.com/browse/social-mediaSocial MediaFREE

Make this list better and let us know in the comments which courses do you think are good.

We’ll add them to the list if they make the cut!


Do you think your data is safe online?

Online Privacy is a well disguised illusion

An illusion that we continue to get pulled into, in exchange for lucrative convenience.

Have you ever seen your favorite brand advertisement while swiping through your instagram stories? Well because you use the brand and they know your ‘preferences’. But the game changes when your very ‘preferences’ are sold to third party agencies or data harvesting giants like Google, Facebook and upcoming Amazon. 

Ever wondered why you saw a Sushi ad on your Insta feed and creepily remembered a conversation you had about good Sushi restaurants in town with a friend earlier that day. Think about your own scenarios of ads showing up out of your personal conversations. 

A ‘recommended’ ad for hotels in Goa after a few minutes of your flight booking to Goa. A notification from your food delivery app saying “salad time” when the clock strikes 1 pm. Or that expensive watch you searched on amazon popping up on different websites on ‘Sale’. 

There lies a parallel world of data barter between companies and agencies, between Corporates and the Government. More or less all apps and sites are sharing some form of your data with Google and Facebook, simply put. Amidst this trade, your ‘interests’ and ‘preferences’ are bidded upon in different currencies of the world, basis metrics like relevancy and ethics. Yes a part of your behaviour, state of mind is pinned on that digital stock market of advertisements.

Thank the stars for some level of ethical advertising.

We can’t blame them much, as we instantly agree to ‘privacy policies’  at the time of registration without a second thought. This is where we willingly give our data out to be used for any desired purpose. (at the end of the article, we have shared interesting snippets from the privacy policy of some of the biggest and most frequented brands.)

They know it all

Google and Facebook both have acquired & funded a substantial share of large and small sized companies that they source viable information from. And unless you follow their news, you may not know it all. (Example: Facebook has in its kitty Whatsapp, Instagram, Meesho And Google has HTC mobile, Looker, Dunzo in India)

Whether you have an Alexa / Google Home or not, these companies know more about you at any given point of time and can even predict your move using their artificial intelligence technology (AI) on whether you are going to eat a burger or a taco based on your past history and your current location. They know what time you wake up, your breakfast preferences (remember, you registered on the app say Big Basket, using your Gmail account). 

“big data” companies analyse these behaviour metrics to automate and improve the efficiency of their services and the content fed to you. While this practice is purely beneficial, but asking for consent and letting the user know upfront and regularly via emails is an expectation of the investment a user puts in to the business. 

Experience without ads is a premium privilege,

that you only get when you pay. A double edged sword where YouTube now shows 2 pre-video ads and multiple in-video ads on a popular & lenghty video, it pushes you to desire an ad free world. Both ways, the company benefits, leaving the user frustrated. 

And just when you thought that it’s only Facebook, Google and Amazon companies robbing your data, there are names of companies you often use or perhaps look up on.

These may seem like first world problems in light of hunger, water crisis, women’s safety among others. However, data trading and advertisements is an interconnected, million dollar business. 

You can always fiddle with the app settings to prevent excess data sharing with third parties. Sadly, there’s not much you can do on your own. But together, we can demand to be informed, demand to take consent.

Interesting privacy policies:

More reads:

att-location-data-tracking-lawsuit-electronic-frontier-foundation

google-location-tracking-cell-tower-data

these-apps-are-stealing-your-most-private-data-and-it-should-be-crime

facebook-privacy-data-information-ad-settings-how-to-protect

google-admits-to-listening-in-on-private-conversations-via-assistant

10-companies-using-big-data

tech-companies-stealing-data


BetaLabs 01 – How to promote an offline event

We believe in the basics, of sharing the unspoken success stories or challenges because it’s often too small in magnitude to talk about. 

The challenge we cover today is on the lines of conversions, from a set of impressions to a lead and from a lead to an offline visit. 

We are a start-up digital agency and believe in a sharing economy of information and knowledge. We realised thought leadership is a topic that’s not only been trending for a while but also is needed by entrepreneurs, freelancers, start-up founders and co founders. We have had prior experience of speaking at co-working spaces in Bangalore; considering its a space where a part of our target audience sits, we went ahead with holding our event @Wolfpack Workspaces at Vasanth Nagar in Bangalore. 

We have put together a quick guide of how to go about creating and promoting an event here in this video. Also sharing below step wise data for your future reference. 


Sites in India to list your basic free or paid event:

  1. Townscript
  2. Eventshigh
  3. Explara
  4. Allevents
  5. Meraevents
  6. Insider.in (for high end or big ticket events)
  7. Trumpcard: Google events
  8. Default: Facebook events

PS: our preference is Townscript, as their team frequently communicates via useful emailers with little tips to promote your event better. And of course because it got us leads!

However, listing on Google optimises the listing on organic search for keywords related to the events. In our case, it took us by surprise with views and engagement on our business page.

Experiment with Content:

We planned our content strategy over a promotional timeline of 16 days with alternate day posting and chose a mix of formats, including the intimidating ‘video posts’ that we had to go the DIY route to create. 

Some of the posts:

Our first attempt at a DIY video post 

Our founder was coaxed to do a selfie video

Content distribution strategy:

A mix of channels, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google, YouTube

We distributed the same content (11 unique posts) across these channels and shared selected ones in a few relevant LinkedIn and Facebook groups.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1298982173495733/?ref=groups_discover_tab
https://www.facebook.com/groups/615828881814154/?ref=group_header
https://www.facebook.com/groups/bsi2013/?ref=group_header
https://www.facebook.com/groups/207369636082104/about/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/985734744817825/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/blrfreelancers/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/bangaloreentrepreneur/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/Startups.BLR/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/132351440651035/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/2Dilekjaan/

https://www.linkedin.com/groups/2093852/
https://www.linkedin.com/groups/5132746/
https://www.linkedin.com/groups/1518287/
https://www.linkedin.com/groups/767147/
https://www.linkedin.com/groups/2299619/

Confusion of too many landing pages:

There is always a conflict of priority when you have external landing pages like event websites in addition to having the booking option available on your own site. This happens in many industries like Travel (hotels & resorts), Technology (mobile, other products) or small scale businesses.  

We decided to add a Townscript widget on the page to make it convenient and to increase website sessions, reduce bounce offs.

While the website sessions increased by 122% post promotion period (yeaayy) but the leads only came through the Townscript website. The widget didn’t do much, but we will keep trying in the future too.

Let us know if you have had another experience than this. 

If you would like to read the blog on thought leadership, here it is: https://aarrrmor.com/diy-your-own-thought-leadership-portfolio/


Game of Marketing to Throne’s Fans (*No Spoilers*)

Now that the mass mania of Game of Thrones is over (Click on the link if you want spoilers), it is time to see how much it has effected our lives.

There is absolutely no doubt that with the copious loads of marketing and advertising budgets($20 million for the recent season) that were thrown in for the mega-series, you maybe in one of these 3 categories:

  1. Watched the series completely
  2. Watched the series partially
  3. Never watch, never intend to watch and is constantly annoyed by the 1st two categories

The show has a huge fan basean average same-day tune-in of 17.3 million viewers, and where there are potential consumers, there are brands.

Brands have jumped into the conversation with extreme enthusiasm. 

For months now, marketers and advertisers at of Oreo, KFC, Pepsi, AT&T, Hotstar etc have been on strict GoT diet.

I hope they get a break, 

and I really feel sad for the people in marketing who fall under the 3rd category.

But you know,

Sometimes jobs are bad… 

Now companies which have hitched their wagon to the GoT brand have done something called as “Topical Marketing” or “Newsjacking”

You know when your consumer base is already engrossed in something that is happening right now 

&

you feel it is your moral responsibility to crash the party? 

Annoying as it might seem but topical marketing is something which drives results.

There is partial data of people who watch Game of Thrones (Insights are coming) and they can be impulse buyers (Yippee! for companies), and also favour the companies which have associated with GoT because they might feel that these brands “get them”, whatever that means.

Obviously, this data is not exhaustive and may not reflect purchasing habits accurately 

but it’s something 

a brand is not willing to ignore. 

Topical Marketing

Indulging in topical marketing, first of all, needs budget. 

It also needs you to know through some user research that the topic you are hijacking overlaps with your target audience interests. So, you can imagine that not all companies must be taking advantage of all the current topics, because they might be irrelevant to their customer base and they might end up spending their budget frivolously.

This sort of marketing increases your brand visibility, gives your brand a personality (something which all brands crave for), maybe show off your sense of humour or cleverness or boldness, all of which can be positive or negative depending on how your ad is perceived by the intended audience. You also need a team which keeps an eye out and responds quickly to such opportunities and is available to successfully complete the campaigns which sometimes might be short-lived, unplanned and hectic.

Because it doesn’t take more than a few hours for people to lose interest and move on to the next shiny object.

One of the most influential marketing phenomena in recent times is the Game of Thrones inspired marketing and advertisements.

Not to forget HBO’s marketing of the show itself, which saw a worldwide scavenger hunt for the throne, a #ForTheThrone campaign to donate blood and hijacking Budlight’s Super Bowl spot.

But we are not going to talk about that… 

Initially I thought I could write about some of the ad campaigns, but the more I researched it, the more I saw that there are literally 100s of ad campaigns catering to GoT (You can find them HereHere and Here)

So now, this article is about how good or bad some of these are 

whether you, as a brand, must indulge in topical marketing or not.

Most of these ads don’t make much sense and are simply using the points of popularity to suck you into an absurd place with loads of commercial products to sell.

No alt text provided for this image

Look at this. 

Who would want to have a game of straws? 

If anything people are understanding that straws are something we shouldn’t be using, and are happy to not use them. Why would a popular brand, which is guilty of increasing the consumption of something clearly unhealthy for our future want to flaunt the very thing they are guilty of?

Not cool…

No alt text provided for this image

And then there’s this. 

FastTrack’s GoT inspired watches. 

For the die hard fans, it makes no sense. 

You can’t simply put the name GoT on random products and expect fans to buy them. 

But these kind of products cater to the show-offers and they routinely fall under the category of people who have watched the show partially and want to be considered cool by adorning such products.

No alt text provided for this image

And then there’s the Adidas GoT inspired sneakersOreos’ limited edition pack of Game of Thrones-themed OreosUrban Decay’s GoT inspired MakeupWhite Walker by Johnnie Walker and the tons of experiential marketing done around this series.

However tempting it might be for you to jump into something which is catching waves, 

do a quick check on whether you should:

  • Does it resonate with your target audience?
  • Do you have the budget for it?
  • What is the goal you expect to hit with the campaign?
  • Do you have the team equipped to carry it out?
  • Is the management on board?

Only when you the answers nudging you in the direct of taking up topical marketing should you get into this game where big brands with unlimited pockets come out to play. 

Make sure you are in it completely and for all the right reasons.

Like and comment if you saw a Game of Thrones inspired “something” recently, 

I certainly have 🙂


Ethics of Business

While discussing client’s and projects with my team, I hear a lot of interesting conversations.

One of them revolves around who we should work with

Our Partnerships:

Everyday, a diversity of business and startup owners talk to us.

They cater to different problems, industries and have their own unique take on the products and solutions required for their market.

This way, we get access to new, exciting and cross-industry learning and insights.

And some of these solutions are incredible, and we can’t stop talking about them. But a lot of them are not, and we face a moral dilemma.

Mostly, this means that we don’t trust the business owner’s intentions.

This has made me realise it’s not the business in itself but the intention of the leadership and their values which reflects in their approach towards business.

The business or startup owner is responsible for making decisions about acquiring customers and delivering quality.

And if they are not serious about doing a good job, but simply wants to pocket money from the market, we feel uneasy.

Taking up a project means working closely with another business.

It means a partnership, a relationship and something we don’t take lightly.

Our relationships impact us and the way we work, so we are intentional about the kind of people we work with and the kind of work we do.

We make it a point to promise at the outset that we’ll not engage in unscrupulous activities in the name of marketing,

even if that means losing an account.

Our Beliefs:

  • Communicating clearly the scope of our services so that we don’t overpromise and drain our team’s energy.
  • Talking openly and often about expectations
  • Not take up tasks simply because someone asked us to do them.
  • Brainstorming on the best course of action for our clients.
  • Saying no to sub-quality requests and projects , &
  • Suggesting data-backed alternatives.

We also go out of our way to deliver quality work instead of chasing many clients and doing subpar work.

But we only do all of this if we believe we’re doing the right thing.

& sometimes we slip, because we’re not perfect but we’re learning everyday even though we make mistakes.

We never make sweeping guarantees,

but if we had to, we’d guarantee that we are committed to

  • Learning
  • Experimenting
  • & Talking.

We would rather focus on quality than quantity.

Whenever we take up a project, we don’t do it simply for putting money in the bank.

We take it up to invest in our learning, contribute to making our culture and processes efficient and building better resources for the industry

Ethics in business is important for us.


DIY Your Own Thought Leadership Portfolio

Thought Leadership is a phrase you would have heard of! What’s this fuss about and why does it seem like a cult following? Let’s jump straight in.

The idea of becoming a thought leader initiated in the world of PR and Communications that would typically be in the form of a quote in a leading publication or an opinion piece. The dependency on a topic or a publication was paramount. That has changed over time with the digital age.

Related Read: How to prioritise your biggest business challenges

Now thought leadership is a two-way, open-ended medium that’s about building profile authority on your own using digital channels. The route to this is to be actively engaging with relevant peers from the industry and sharing content that’s useful and valuable. Here of course there are no boundaries, you are free to explore as many channels or industries as you like.

  1. Build Trust: When you share valuable information over a period, you make a trusted community who will follow your channel. Besides this, it’s far easier to connect and engage in a dialogue with C level executives or other influencers.
  2. Open doors for potential business opportunities: When you approach industry leaders, business managers, founders, co-founders on LinkedIn, your profile and content authority have the potential to open profitable conversations. In this process, don’t forget to engage with your existing connections on LinkedIn 😊

Tips for the new ones on the block:

  • Learn how to juggle with content and network hand in hand
  • Don’t let the word ‘content’ scare you, it is not a herculean task. You can start with sharing already published news articles, share your knowledge as a comment on articles or posts from people in your network or your opinion on topical news. This is a good beginning.  
    Once you get comfortable with this activity and begin to see the merits of it, you can publish your own original piece of content.
  • Remember to keep it relevant, keep it real. Experiment with post formats to see what works best for which piece of content.

Understanding the different digital channels:

  • While LinkedIn is the most relevant channel and the trending one too, it is good to be aware of other generic platforms like Quora, Medium, Reddit, Google Groups, Meetup and of course Twitter to build your digital thought leadership portfolio on.
  • This apart, there are industry specific platforms too such as Good Reads for authors and readers, Stack overflow for IT geeks, Reverbnation for musicians.


Here’s where the industry is moving towards:


We have put together a list of chosen LinkedIn profiles of good thought leaders that you can browse through or follow:

Here’s an example of good content:

Reference:

b2b-thought-leadership-impact-study

essential-skills-successful-digital-thought-leaders