Geo-Fencing Might Be a BuzzWord, but the Results Are Real

At Advance 360, we meet with a lot of people. Lately, one of the most frequently asked questions is around “geo-fencing.” This buzzword has become so popular that our clients want to learn more about it and how we can put it to use for them.

Geo-Fencing is a term that simply means targeting someone by the location of their device. For example, a shopping service can target individuals that go to a certain grocery store by locating their device inside that store and sending them marketing during and after their visit. While a pizzeria might target devices in a local stadium. Or, it can be used to target attendees at a trade show. The uses are endless.

Retailers attend an industry conference, where wholesalers are taking orders for their seasonal product lines. For the retailer, they are looking for new items to sell. For the vendors it is a heated competition in which they want their items to be top of mind. They are competing with 100 other wholesalers with similar items. Messaging the retailer attendees while they’re at the show can help them get noticed and make a connection.

Tradeshow Creative Examples:

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Messaging attendees while they’re at the show can improve the top-of-mind awareness for vendors and drive incremental business. In an environment where literally every fifteen steps is a new purchase opportunity, every close counts. Get a jumpstart by messaging the very people you are selling to.

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Using technology to your advantage means you can now follow these devices home, serving messages after the event and growing the length of your exchange with your retailers. Get specific, at this point! There’s nothing wasted by securing one more sale after the show closes.

Post Tradeshow Creative Examples:

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Once the retailer has left the show, the opportunity to meet with them face to face may have ended. But the chance to influence whether they do business with you has not! They’ve seen your name and potentially even met with you. Now you can close the deal without another meeting.

Using geographic, latitude/longitude targeting of devices makes sense for any show. Make the most of your next tradeshow experience!

Understanding Site Traffic Critical to Business Development

You have spent so much time over the years getting the right product mix in your store, setting up displays to produce an effective flow, having Sales Associates there to greet and engage your customers. Are you thinking about the same things for your website? Well, you should since three out of four shoppers who find online, local information helpful are more likely to visit stores. Once in the store, 46% are conducting research on the retailer’s site/app. *Think with Google

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Understanding the Path to Conversion

The decision to buy may be long (a home, a car, travel) or short (tonight’s dinner, a new top), but has the same steps. From awareness to advocacy, you know that your customers learn of your brand, research or engage with it, and decide to buy or not to buy through your website.

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Employ Digital Analytics to Track, Test
& Measure a Customer’s Journey

Watch entry and exit points.

Watch what’s happening carefully. Does traffic enter your site on your home page every time? Do they all take the same path through your content to the point of purchase? If they do, you have an extremely linear experience—which is rare (if not unheard of). Sites should have enough content to educate and inform, but also a clear call to action. Where your visitors exit can also be telling. Do they “get lost” within a particular area of your site, and leave before taking action? What steps can be taken to prevent this from happening, and shorten the number of clicks from the first to the last page?

Average Page Views

If the average of pages viewed per visit is three or more, the path to conversion may be too long. For instance: if your doctor’s office site has been created to generate new patients, those brand new patients might want to explore the credentials of the staff, the treatment types they offer, and whether or not the office is accepting new patients. All of these pieces of content could be contained on the home page. A click to call feature or click to see available appointments would provide instant gratification for any new patient.

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This orthopedic specialist has a popup click to make an appointment. It isn’t intrusive, but it allows for new patients to immediately connect.

Time on Site

If your site is intended to simplify a purchase, the faster you can close a transaction the better. Take Sheplers’ Mackinac Island Ferry, for instance. This site was built to change the Shepler’s model from a labor intensive, manual purchase through an in-person ticket window to a seamless, online experience using a mobile device. The customer should be able to complete their transaction in less than 3 minutes. Returning customers, less than 2 minutes. Rather than 20 minutes in a ticket line, a 3-minute smartphone exchange is significantly better. But knowing that optimizations can be made over time by carefully monitoring the areas of the transaction that take the most time can further decrease friction in the purchase process.

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Top Visited Pages

Like a magician that invites you to “pick a card,” you should know what selections your viewers will choose most frequently. Pieces of content that introduce a new program or product, or offer a “featured” feel will likely draw more attention than a blog posted 10 months ago. The more prominent the placement, the more relevant it should be to the user. Think about both frequency and recency. How often does your client transact on your site? If monthly, perhaps you change content features once each month. More frequently? Match the frequency and recency of your average (not the most valuable) client, and you’ll capture their attention with the content you provide.

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The Check In Michigan home page features the nearest upcoming events, and the most recent news and industry updates. Both are dynamic, keeping up to date without manual maintenance needed.

Organic versus Paid Traffic

A certain percentage of your traffic will know and visit you because they are already aligned with your brand. While it’s important to maintain a current customer, it’s also important to foster new business. Is your search budget generating a healthy percentage of your site traffic? How about display? Measuring how your customers are reaching you, and then taking steps to amplify or modify that traffic purposefully is among the best ways to use your knowledge of site traffic to benefit your business.

Geography, Demography

Where your traffic originates as well as the age or characteristics of your traffic can tell you so much. Knowing that your average site visitor is 50 means the messages that will influence him or her should be very different. Perhaps you are looking to diversify the age ranges of the clientele your serve. Measuring the mix of these individuals will help you identify when your marketing activities are successful.

Regardless of the goal, understanding who is on your site, how they convert, and what they consume while in your digital footprint will make tomorrow’s marketing activities smarter than today’s. Consider analytics as the foundation of a marketing strategy, rather than the way to measure it, and you’ll be more successful at launch.

Mackinac Island Named Number 1 Summer Destination in America by TripAdvisor

The TripAdvisor ranking is based on seasonal hotel booking interest from spring to summer, including the average one-week vacation costs for hotels and airfare. As Mackinac’s Agency of Record, Advance 360 is thrilled to celebrate this well-deserved recognition.

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Advance 360, the Mackinac Island Tourism’s Agency of Record, has worked diligently to achieve this notoriety, but also dramatically improve the revenue of the island and the length of the peak season. Both have made tremendous inroads — growing by more than 30% in revenue since 2013.

In 2013, Mackinac Island Tourism identified a need for a refined, laser targeted digital campaign. Since that time, the budgetary commitment to this proven digital strategy has more than doubled, and the results speak for themselves.

Products Used:

• Paid Search
• SEO
• Display and Re-messaging
• Responsive Rich Media
• Sponsor Content
• Social Media Management and Amplification
• Web Design and Development
• Video Pre-Roll

Strategy

The primary goal has always been to increase total room revenue on Mackinac Island. Advance 360 knows that increasing site traffic and conversions on mackinacisland.org are the leading indicators of how the island will pace with regards to room revenue. Adjusting and solving for the appropriate increase in web visitors during target months, the strategy lifted traffic and with it, room night revenue.

Because the island is open only May through October, the window of opportunity is short. Using historical data, travel research, and audience profiling, Advance 360 was able to predict peaks in bookings, understand target audiences and messaging, and lift conversions. Insights from SEM analysis dictated a full year marketing campaign that elevated bookings in both early and late season, adding to increase of total room revenue for the island.

Advance 360 is still the DAOR for Mackinac Island and 2018 pacing is currently on track to exceed campaign key performance indicators.

Results

From 2013-2018, since Advance 360 has become Mackinac Island’s Digital Agency of Record, they have seen the following increases:

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CREATIVE EXAMPLES

Digital Ads:

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Website:

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All About Color: A Guide to Color Management

What is your favorite color? What colors does your organization use in their branding? There’s a science behind translating the color you see to applications, and they have limits. We’re going to shine some light on color spaces and share color management recommendations.

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GAMUTS AND THEIR COLORS

A color space is a set of colors also called gamut. The largest gamut represents the entire visible color spectrum that a human eye can see, called L*a*b* space. From the visible color gamut we can reproduce a visible color’s best match since other gamut’s have their own color spectrum limited to their device.

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PANTONE
When printing with spot color (likened to paint), the Pantone Color System provides a library of premixed solid colors which include opaque white, fluorescents and metallics.
APPLICATION | printing on paper, color matching reference

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CMYK
When printing with transparent inks/toner, the CYMK gamut is a smaller range of colors. CMYK is a subtractive color system where transparent ink dots of Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black are applied to a material. Since CYMK is a transparent ink, the material and its color effects the final applied color.
APPLICATION | printing on paper or other substrates

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RGB
For color representation on digital screens the RGB color gamut is the largest device-driven color space. RGB is an additive color system using transparent Red, Green and Blue with light shining through.
APPLICATION | TV, monitor, websites, or mobile device screen

Color Management

The aim of color management is to keep the same relative color from one device to another; I want to see the color I selected from Pantone on my monitor and then in my print. As you now understand, it can get a bit complicated as these different platforms don’t “see” or reproduce colors the same way. In addition, software such as Adobe uses their own methods for translating color into various gamuts. Instead of using Pantone’s recommended conversions, Adobe uses its own ‘Lab’ conversion which is mathematical and based on one’s color settings/profile.

RECOMMENDED PROCESS

We recommend first selecting a Coated Spot color from Pantone color library. Pantone is an industry-standard, consistent system for aligning color in ALL reproductions: digital, print, paint, signage, silkscreen inks, etc. For acquiring the best color match formulas in RGB, CMYK and Web(html) gamuts, we recommend using Pantone’s as opposed to Adobe. The Coated Pantone formulas have been tested to provide the best visible color match for each gamut.

SO HOW DO WE PROCEED?

• When specifying/designing for spot color printing (rare), silkscreen, solid vinyl –
use the Coated Pantone color.

• When specifying/designing for
process printing (mainstream) –
use Pantone’s CMYK formula mix.

• When specifying/designing for digital
use Pantone’s RGB or Hex formula mix.

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Brand guidelines should include their Pantone colors as well as other formulas clearly identified for vendors, partners, and designers. Check out some examples of successful Advance 360 branding projects:

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What does your favorite color say about you?

Content Contributed by Sheri Nicholson, Advance 360, Senior In-House Creative Strategist