The Countdown to Christmas

Christmas is upon us and unless you have been living under a rock for the last month or so you will by now be familiar with the Christmas messages from the big brands. John Lewis have unleashed their bouncing Boxer, Marks and Spencer have sprinkled a touch of sparkle over Mrs Christmas and Sainsbury’s have given time-strapped Dad the gift of family time this festive period. Just three of a huge sackful of brand campaigns designed to delight and inspire shoppers.

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Executed correctly inspiring shoppers is just what Christmas can do, and its often essential for the success of the brand to increase sales at this time of year. In fact, according to Retail Research sales generated during this period represent more than 20% of total retail sales for the year. The consumers appetite is there and people are more receptive to Christmas marketing but it is imperative not to become part of the barrage of communications that get lost in the crowd, especially when email marketing alone increases by 25% at this time of year (MarketingTech).

The key to keeping consumers engaged is to intuitively update your message to their
changing needs, taking the stress of out present shopping and making it as easy as possible for them. Here are some examples of how to make the most out of your festive content and keep your customers inspired:

Early bird offers
Once you have pressed the button on your Christmas marketing message its time to tailor it to those early bird shoppers who like to have Christmas wrapped up by the beginning of December. One of the key dates for this is Black Friday and you can let your customers know in advance your top deals, time frames for discounts and special loyalty offers.

In-store events
There are lots of events planned in the run up to Christmas and its the perfect opportunity to draw your customers in from the cold, enticing them with complimentary in store services and goodies. Invite them to their nearest store through their preferred marketing channels whether that’s email, social or post.

Last minute solutions
For all those early birds there are the same amount of people who wait until the last minute to blitz their gift list. Offer gift suggestions based on their purchases last year along with customer reviews and make sure they know your express delivery services, last ordering dates and gift wrap options.

Christmas is a lifecycle in itself and those brands that reach out at every stage of the Festive shoppers journey with relevant, intuitive content will reap the rewards.

www.photospire.co.uk

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Photospire showcases its platform at Millennial 20/20

The Photospire team are heading to Millennial 20/20 today to showcase their personalised video technology platform to some of the worlds biggest brands and retailers.

Screen Shot 2016-04-13 at 09.11.24The Millennial 20/20 Summit in London brings together over 3,000 brands, retailers, start-ups and corporates to focus on the future of business from the perspective of the digital savvy consumer. The summit shines a light on the innovation, disruption and technology that is required to meet today’s complex and ever-evolving consumer.

Photospire will be based in the Accenture World of ME which brings to life the consumer experience and store of the near future in an immersive environment. Visitors can explore how to capture the heart and loyalty of the Millennial through products and services that will influence the retail and consumer landscape.

CEO Ger O’Meara is looking forward to promoting how Photospire meets the needs of todays consumer: “Millennials have really upped the anti in terms of what they expect as consumers. With a wealth of knowledge at their fingertips they want relevant content that is personal and intuitive to their needs. Photospire’s platform allows brands to create short data driven videos that are tailored to each individual, and tells the brands story in the most engaging way.”

Photospire changes the way that Millennials consume content by giving brands the power to communicate through personalised, engaging video.

http://www.photospire.co.uk

All Hail the Mighty GIF

GIFs today are a far cry from their humble clipart beginnings in 1987. Todays GIFs are the go to medium for anybody wanting to express something in a fast and engaging way. Somewhere between a collection of images and a mini video the GIF format adds something special. They are visually stimulating and can be consumed in a matter of seconds on continuous loop. They tick all the right boxes for today’s time poor consumer.

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Social media sites are all on board now allowing users to upload GIFs, a platform on which they really come into their own. New online tools help even the most novice users find and create GIFs which they can then share. When scrolling through your news feed the number of GIFs displayed has massively increased in recent months both from followers and brands. Facebook finally rolled out proper GIF support to personal accounts and business accounts last year and Twitter has gone one step further by last month releasing a GIF button which allows users to search its catalogue of animated GIFs and then easily share them. It has also released a video sharing tool for direct messages.

Brands are now using this medium to engage with their customers in a new and fresh way. Although video is still incredibly powerful in marketing terms GIFs offer a different approach. They provide a more convenient, faster and silent way to engage. Brands can build hype and highlight key messages in as little as three seconds and GIFs frame-by-frame nature lets consumers stop and focus on a single moment or detail. Brands are seeing huge increases in click through and conversion rates when using this format in emails. They are also being used on product pages as how-to visuals, on social media to give customers a ‘sneak-peak’ look at new products and as follow up communications to keep the conversation going and continue to engage.

Whichever way you look at it GIFs are here to stay and are only going to get more advanced as technology progresses. Can your brand afford not to get on board? For information on how Photospire can reach out to your customers through visual content please get in touch today.

How retailers are engaging customers with digital displays

Retailers have long known that to keep up with their customers’ demands they need to offer an exciting and innovative experience to in-store visits. Today’s shopper wants a more engaged, personal experience when they shop in store and have come to expect the same resources that they have available when shopping online. Oracle’s 2015 Consumer Research report found that 76% of respondents wanted retailers to invest in new technologies that specifically engage customer experience, with 54% saying that converged commerce is key to this.

In answer to this demand digital displays have come to the forefront in helping retailers bring the online and in-store shopping experience together, allowing consumers to interact and connect with brands whilst enriching their shopping experience.

One of the great advantages to in store digital displays is the ease in which they can personalise and add value to a shoppers visit. They can either be controlled by staff on site for a more relevant, customised experience or externally to offer consistency and increase brand loyalty.

Here are some brands that are using this technology to really stand out from the crowd and offer their customers a new approach to how they shop in-store:

Audi City

An early adopter of digital displays, Audi have rolled out digital showrooms in cities such as London and Berlin. This innovative format uses state of the art technology that enables visitors to experience every possible combination of the Audi range in one place. The London dealership has four ‘powerwalls’ – floor to ceiling screens that display the customers chosen car after identifying the model, colour, engine and other specification from touch screen tables. They can then spin the car around, peer inside, open the doors and trunk and even watch it drive off, complete with authentic engine noises.

Argos

Argos have opened their first tranche of new digital concept stores. The shops use digital technology to make the customer experience more interactive.  Customers can use tablets in store to browse products (where once was the catalogue) and the mounted screens welcome the customer, showcase the staff on duty and display new products and promotions. The company’s Twitter and Facebook feeds can also be directed to screens, which provides additional content for customers to read while they wait.

The technology displays current pricing and uses live, local stock data to decide which products get promoted. In addition, each store is linked to the local weather station, which enables Argos to promote weather related products on-screen as appropriate.

Ralph Lauren

Ralph Lauren successfully integrates engaging graphics within their store displays. They recently showcased an energetic and engaging Polo Sport display in the window of Macy’s New York and at their flagship store on Fifth Avenue. Using props, mannequins and graphic content they grabbed shoppers attention in an energised and theatrical way. The digital displays ran a video loop with fast-paced edits, featuring athletes wearing the apparel that the mannequins were sporting in action poses.

Burberry

A lot has already been written about Burberry’s flagship Regent’s Street store and it continues to be one of the most innovative shops in the world. The concept has been taken from their web user-experience and applied to the in-store retail space to create a bricks and mortar version of the website. Concentrating on the digital display aspect, customers are greeted by a huge digital screen (the largest of its type worldwide) giving the sensation of physically landing on the home page.

The most highly innovate concept is the stores mirrors that transform into digital screens. A chip hidden inside each product triggers RFID (radio-frequency identification) enabled mirrors on the shop floor and in changing rooms to transform into digital screens, displaying product information and inspiration.

The beauty of digital displays is that they enable brands to impress with fast moving content that can be updated at the press of a button. Used well they can bridge that elusive gap between on-line and in-store shopping and the overall result should be designed to enhance the store experience and assist customers in all aspects of the buying journey.

www.photospire.co.uk

 

 

 

Six ways to increase sales with personalised emails

Everybody likes to feel special and marketeers know that that personal touch can have huge effects on customer engagement, loyalty and sales. With the high volume of emails people receive on a daily basis, those that are personalised to each recipient really stand out. Research has shown that 80% of customers prefer receiving personalised emails with product recommendations based on previous purchases.

Here are a few tips to make personalised email marketing work for you:

1. Catch the eye and set the tone
Such a simple thing but nothing can seem more personalised to customers than a customer’s own name. It immediately makes them feel that the information they are being sent is relevant to them. It essentially sets the tone to your message in a positive way.

2. Showcase relevant products
Once a customer has bought something from you then it is the perfect opportunity to show them other products that relate to their purchase. You are not hard selling, just making suggestions that you know they will be interested in.

3. Reward with tailored offers
Research shows that personalising your offers increases conversion to sales. From sending out a birthday ‘gift’ to offering a special deal for a category that they have been browsing, personalising your offer will increase their use. Cart abandonment can be reduced and sales increased by sending a personalised offer for products that have been put into a customer’s cart but not purchased after a set time.

4. Ask for customer reviews
Making customers a part of your marketing strategy is a powerful tool. By asking your customer what they thought of a recent purchase you are giving them a sense of importance. You want their opinion so that you can keep improving your service as well as getting to know them better.

5. Remind customers of their purchase history
Providing customers with their purchase history makes them feel that their purchases are being cared for and their custom appreciated. Having their history easily accessible will also remind them that they already have a relationship with your brand which all adds to their sense of loyalty.

6. Targeted invitations and previews
The more special a customer feels, the brighter the chances of a sale. Send them previews of new collections, invite them to store openings in their locality, keep them up to date on new products they may be interested in and share with them your news.

Photospire enables retailers to create high volumes of personalised, automated, shoppable videos at the press of a button for use across all platforms including email. Contact us today for more information

The Benefits of Personalised Video for your Brand

It has been proven time and again that audiences prefer video to text, so much so that according to Forrester 80% would watch a video over just 20% reading text. We also know that personalised communications with consumers increases sales and creates loyalty so by marrying the two together you have a very powerful tool that will benefit your brand.

Influence, Captivate and Connect

Video enables bBENEFITS1rands to open a conversation with the audience through the art of story telling. Engaging video can influence, captivate and connect emotionally with consumers as it conveys meaning quicker than text, and the content is more likely to be retained.
By personalising your message you further engage with your audience as it allows you to speak as if you’re face-to-face, but at your glossy best. According to Econsultancy 84% of marketers find that personalisation increases customer engagement and directly impacts retention and loyalty.

Broaden your Reach

BENEFITS3Brands can broaden their reach and exposure across multiple channels. Videos can be uploaded to your website, mobile platform, email, in-store displays and social channels such as YouTube, Instagram, Facebook and Vimeo etc, This marketing through social media allows for immediate client feedback and engagement and will increase SEO, attracting traffic and new customers to your site.

Increase Sales

Ultimately this is perhaps the mBENEFITS2Bost important benefit personalised videos can bring to your brand. By customising your message to individuals, you will see a greater number of customers clicking through for more information. Conversion rates can increase six fold over direct mail. Similarly by sending targeted offers and product showcases you will see an increase in offer redemptions and product interest that will lead to sales. Giving your customers the right information at the right time   increases their confidence in your brand and encourages loyalty.

Photospire enables retailers to create high volumes of personalised, automated, shoppable videos at the press of a button. Contact us today for more information

Increase Sales through the Power of Video

Currently in the UK one in three people view at least one online video a week – that’s a weekly audience of over 20 million and that audience is growing daily. By 2017 video will account for 69% of all consumer internet traffic according to Cisco. In fact, research suggests that consumers are more likely to view video than any other resource online. The message is clear, if you haven’t done already, you need to make video a priority if you want to engage with customers and increase sales.

Video is a great waFacts 3y to get consumers thinking about you, and talking about your product or service. It also encourages prospective consumers to engage with your brand and products as it enables them to get a better understanding of who you are and what you are offering. This increases engagement and brings prospects a step closer to being your customer and encourages your customers to become lifelong customers.

So what does video do that text cant? It creates intimacy with the audience and they connect more easily with what they are watching compared to text that can seem distant and detached. Video also conveys you message more clearly and quickly creating an instant understanding between content and viewer. Most people are visual learners and do not want to read for long on their computer screens be it on a website or in an email. Video allows them to absorb the same information but in a more engaging way.

According to comScore consumers are 64% more likely to buy items after watching a product or brand video. Now is the time to harness this power to increase your sales.

Photospire enables companies to auto generate video content at the click of a button. For information on how we can help your sales and customer engagement please contact us.

Top 5 Reasons to Utilise Personalised Video Marketing

We live in a world that is constantly evolving based on new possibilities provided by enhanced technologies. The marketing industry is no exception, and has recently shifted towards high levels of personalisation. The industry has also become dominated by video because it has proven to be the most engaging type of content. These recent developments have sparked a new marketing trend combining both personalisation and video content.

Here are 5 reasons your company should utilise personalised video marketing:

  1. Increase Engagement- Consumer engagement is a very valuable measurement to determine if your marketing campaign was a success. According to Forrester, using video as a marketing medium will increase the average click through ratio by 200%-300%. The first step is getting the consumer to open your advertisement; including video is the key.
  1. 5 ReasonsReduce Opt-Outs- Eloqua discovered that including a personalised video in an introductory email reduced the number of consumer opt-outs by 75%. Retaining these customers allows you to build loyal relationships and gain an edge on the competition.
  1. Build Brand Loyalty- Having customers that are loyal to your brand and consistently purchase your products is crucial to having a successful business. KAYAK concluded that personalised video marketing results in a 73% increase in brand loyalty.
  1. Boost Sales- The ultimate goal of any marketing campaign is to reach current and potential consumers with a message that inspires them to buy your products. Switchvideo.com found that companies who consistently use personalisation in their marketing efforts see an average 19% increase in sales.
  1. Video Content Produces Best ROI- Every investment in marketing is done with the hope that you will produce more sales, and in turn make spending your money worthwhile. 70% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content that produces the highest returns on investment (MarketingProfs).

The benefits of personalised video marketing go far beyond these five points, but they do provide a glimpse into what this revolutionised marketing approach can do for your business. Photospire has perfected the production of this content and enables companies to auto generate visual stories at the press of a button incorporating real time data, user-generated content and brand identity. To learn more please contact us.

Author: Jon Goldenberg – Photospire Marketing Executive

Focus: Shoppable Visual Content

For retailers, connecting and engaging with consumers is key to growing sales and strengthening customer loyalty. One of the most successful ways of doing this is through targeted visual content. But how can retailers get more from their campaigns and increase their conversion to sales rates?

One simple, yet underused answer is to make their visual content shoppable. Whether consumers are reading a blog, watching a e-video or scanning a lookbook, they want to be able to buy the products on offer as effortlessly as possible. The time in which they make the buying decision and purchase is key in turning content in to sales.  As such, interactive, visual content is one of the most important trends in content marketing for retailers.

shoppable contentInnovative brands are reducing the friction between the content they produce and the purchasing process by making their content shoppable. H&M, for example, have harnessed this trend as part of their homeware campaigns. Their lookbooks not only feature images of products in context, but also splits the screen and separates the products out individually with each item being clickable and easy to ‘add to bag’.

Dyson have taken this one step further and have produced e-videos showcasing their machines and enabling the consumer to click on an image within the video to be taken to the product webpage. Other brands such as Juicy Couture, Nike and Mr Porter also enhance their videos in this way.

So the question is, how are you going to step up your content and increase your conversion rates? Photospire enables retailers to create high volumes of personalised automated, shoppable evideos at the press of a button. What are you waiting for? Contact us today for more information.

Personalised Marketing – Getting it Right

Personalisation helps to reduce the noise around your marketing message and allows that message to evolve and develop based on your customer interactions and behaviour.  Achieving this is becoming more and more important in digital marketing, using personalisation to create a focussed marketing message and call to action is what makes it highly effective.

personalised_marketing2Executed correctly personalisation can succeed in getting the right communications to the right people at the right time. Companies that can do this on an individual basis rather than mass market are seeing excellent results. However, there are certain things to consider before embarking on this type of marketing to make it a success:

Real-time

Every email that you send to a customer needs to be relevantand timely. Email is still the most effective form of digital marketing, but its value can be weakened by sending endless generic emails. Identify customer segments and send them personalised dynamic emails that are tailored to the time and location the emails are opened.

Know your Audience

As well as demographic analysis, location and behaviour, tap into your customers purchase and browsing history to really target your message. Insight needs to be gathered not just online, but across all customer touch points to ensure you have rounded view of each individual. As well as listening to customers to understand what they like, what is ignored is just as important. It’s about putting the right product and information in front of the right customer.

The Devil is in the Detail

Mistakes often happen when assumptions are made based on data that is incorrect or incomplete leading to a bad experience. Personalisation relies on data and technology working together, but still requires monitoring to make sure that the message reflects the brand and consumers they are targeting. Personalised marketing can be executed at scale but the right systems need to be in place to maintain accuracy and relevance.

Beware of Over-Kill

Companies should be mindful of how they use their customers’ data when communicating with them. Personalisation is a highly effective tool in building customer engagement, however if you are too intrusive you run the risk of invading a person’s privacy and this will have a damaging impact. Only communicate with them when you have something relevant to say.

According to Econsultancy research, 74% of marketers report that personalisation increases customer engagement and 84% report it directly impacts customer retention and loyalty.  Whichever way you look at it personalisation is here to stay and represents an exciting new way of thinking for marketeers and brands.