Is Social Media becoming part of your personality?

Did you know that 72% of all internet users have some link to social media?

It wasn’t long ago that people were picking up newspapers instead of iPads, Walkman’s instead of iPhones, books instead of a Kindle or even having a face-to-face conversation rather than social updates. But times have changed and you can no longer escape being connected to the world. We find ourselves checking-in at the gym on Facebook or uploading a photo of our indulgent Starbucks hot chocolate to Instagram. But are people growing too accustom to the sharing lifestyle?

The rapid growth of technology in the 21st century has contributed to the unlimited access we now have to our various accounts, whether you’re travelling to work or on holiday. Mark Zuckerberg tends to find out you’re in a relationship quicker than your parents! However, social sharing has become a way of life where it feels necessary to share stories with readers. Believe it or not, 57% of users communicate via social media rather than real life. That explains why we’re always hearing “I’m definitely going to tweet that”!

Question time!
What is the first thing you do when you wake up? Grab a cuppa? Have a Shower? Get some breakfast?
I bet you don’t do any of that! You probably do what most of the population do, instead of getting your morning caffeine fix, you spend your morning scrolling through your Facebook or Twitter feed or catching up on Snapchat’s you’ve missed during the night. (Yes, I am one of the many even if I don’t like to admit it!)

Let’s take a look at some of the most popular channels available at our fingertips and how they may be integrated into your personality:

  • Facebook

Facebook has created an open forum where users can share, like and comment with people we have let into our circle of friends.

  • Twitter

Twitter offers a platform for news, politics, travel and gossip, ensuring information is delivered to people in real-time. It offers the ability to connect with celebrities and converse with companies. Where else can you view worldwide trends with a simple #Hashtag?

  • Instagram

Prefer to use images rather than words to keep up-to-date? Instagram is probably the platform for you! Now be honest, how many ‘selfies’ with flattering filters have you shared in the last month?

  • Pinterest

As simple as the title, you pin your interests! Whether it’s a wish list, mood board or bucket list, we’re pretty sure hours have passed whilst searching on this growing platform.

  • LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the industry based channel and essentially an online CV. Work connections, industry trends and job inquiries; LinkedIn is the place to boost your work and education achievements.

Of course there are loads more channels that can be accounted for such as Google + and Foursquare. Whatever your choice of sharing, we ask the question again; is social media becoming part of your personality?

As a business it is important to understand the effectiveness of the online marketing tool. It offers a cost effective and targeted way to engage, inform and promote. For more information about the social media services we offer please visit our webpage www.bigwavemedia.co.uk/social-media

Oh, one last thing…don’t forget to share this blog on social media!

Posted in Advertising, Blog, Devon, Digital, Digital Marketing, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Social, Social Media, Twitter | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

5 reasons why featuring a blog on your website can be advantageous for your business

Blogging was once a dominant online platform for personal expression. However, businesses have since leveraged its power to establish and enhance their online presence. Alongside the rise of social media marketing, blogs provide the opportunity to share your expertise and knowledge with a larger audience.  However, they are often viewed as time-consuming and pointless: who even reads them? But sharing interesting content can go a long way. Here are 5 reasons why we believe a blog can be advantageous for your business:

1. Communication Device

A blog adds a new dimension to your marketing communication, relaying informal messages, accomplishments or important business news. This keeps clients and customers up-to-date, whilst adding a human aspect to your business.

2. Market Research Tool

Thanks to widely available, inexpensive or free analytics tools, you can quickly measure which of your posts are generating the most interest. This can improve your marketing messages and provide an insight into which products and services can be created or developed.

3. Brand Builder

An active business blog can show that your company is one step ahead of the industry, by writing about relevant new trends and key business news. If completed well, this can project the personality of your organisation, build credibility and demonstrate your ability to lead.

4. SEO Benefits

A well written blog post can attract a vast number of visitors from search engines by ranking for a number of keywords. These visitors can then be directed to your business website for increased traffic and awareness as well as potential client/customer acquisition.

5. Illustrates Reliability

Trust and reliability are rare and valuable possessions online that can take a significant amount of time and effort to be earned (although still may never happen!). A regular blog demonstrates your commitment to your readers, which in turn will make it easier to accomplish your online goals.

To chat about featuring a blog on your website or to view examples of a blog, please contact Simon Beer at simonbeer@bigwavemedia.co.uk

Posted in Blog, Business Development, Devon, Digital, Digital Marketing, News, Search Engine Optimisation, Social Media, Website | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How to Pin on Point

Pinterest is quickly becoming the fastest growing social media network, with over 16 million daily active users. So we hear you ask the question, how do I stand out in the sea of other pinners?

People often take this virtual bulletin board to the extreme and go pinning mad, adding any content to their boards to ensure they feature new content. However, with a little care and attention you can make sure your pinning is on point with these essential steps:

 

1. Create Interesting Boards

Establish boards that focus on lifestyles, events, seasonal trends and wish lists. They are a perfect way to illustrate creative thinking, up to date content and the personality behind your brand. Travel Channel appeals to followers’ sense of adventure with “Daily Escapes”. Add all your boards to categories to ensure your pins will show up under category searches.

2. Use High Quality Images

Pinterest is all about the image. Invest a little time in creating a high-quality, visually appealing image to intrigue your audience; they are much more likely to take a look and repin! Think outside the box and share designed graphics as well as photos; infographics are a great source of visual, clear information.

3. Captions

An engaging caption that captures the alluring nature of the image will increase its sharability. Utilize the channels search function by including hashtags and keywords to widen your audience and consider search engine optimisation.

4. Promote your Business Creatively

Generate a call-to-action in your pins. Integrate online and offline strategies, promote competitions and drive traffic to your website. The potential of Pinterest has been reinforced as it is said to drive more referral traffic than YouTube, Google + or LinkedIn.

5. Research and Measure

It is important to track recent activity to measure the success of your current strategy. Discover the pins and boards that receive the best results and target your future pins similarly. Google Analytics will highlight any keyword searches or referral sources that drove traffic from Pinterest.

Pinterest has recently introduced a new messaging feature that allows pinners to have a private conversation around an image. When someone sends you a pin, you can reply with a message and send a pin back. To find out how Pinterest can help your business’ online presence or to chat about designing Pinterest content such as Infographics please give us a call us on 0845 643 2385 or complete our contact form and we’ll be in touch.

Posted in Advertising, Blog, Branding, Devon, Digital, Digital Marketing, Google, Graphic Design, Pinterest, Search Engine Optimisation, Social Media | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The benefits of Facebook advertising and the 7 rules

Facebook advertising options

What is Facebook advertising?
Advertising campaigns can be run on Facebook using a pay-per-click (PPC) model. Facebook campaigns offer a highly effective way to boost your profile, increase page likes, drive traffic to your website or to boost awareness of your company or a selected product. Facebook advertising appears on newsfeed, mobiles or as a right hand side advert, depending on your overall goal, e.g. page likes, event responses or clicks through to your website.

Effectiveness
A PPC campaign with good planning and targeting delivers an extremely cost effective way to advertise your products or services – particularly when compared to the cost of more traditional forms of advertising. A Facebook PPC campaign should contain tailored adverts to be served to specific demographics which can be targeted based on location, age, gender and interests, amongst other criteria. This demographic data is pulled from Facebook user’s profile data (if you are a Facebook user think about the information your profile contains in the ‘About’ section). So, if a user has specified they are a female from Cardiff and has interests in swimming, then they can be targeted and served an advert from a PPC campaign for a Leisure Centre based in Cardiff promoting Ladies Only Swim Sessions. Likewise, if a user has specified they are male from Exeter who is engaged to be married, then an Exeter based wedding hire shop can serve them an advert with a suit hire promo.

Targeting
Further targeting options can be implemented through custom and similar audiences. A custom audience matches your own database against people who are already on Facebook. A custom audience can be created from a set of data your company already has – maybe a list of existing customers or mobile app users. That data is mapped against Facebook users (i.e. by referencing the email address against Facebook registered email addresses).

The final list, which generally comes back with 30-50% of matched Facebook users, can then be used in a number of ways. The audience is added (or even excluded) from a campaign. This allows us to effectively incorporate only the specific audience members we wish to target with the campaign.

Similar audiences do what they say on the tin. They allow advertisers to reach new people who are similar to existing source data, specified by country and optimised by whether the focus is on similarity or reach. Focusing on similar will behave more like the source data than those optimised for reach.

Source data can include; a custom audience created and saved, Facebook page, or conversion tracking pixel. This method of targeting extends the reach, serving the ads to people with similar demographics and interests and therefore will be more appropriate for the campaign, creating a targeted and cost effective approach.

Planning and monitoring
Having a core goal, key audience criteria and targeting options ensures the advert is only being served to users who may have an interest in the promotion, product or service. This positively impacts campaign results and provides a level of targeting and ROI that blanket advertising just can’t deliver. Using the PPC model, the campaign only incurs a charge when a user clicks on an advert, so spending time to tailor the campaign means that only the relevant users are served impressions.

An eye catching headline and image is very important for attracting attention. Within a Facebook PPC campaign up to 6 different image options can be set, and the headline and additional content can be varied. This provides analytics to show which images and content are resonating most with the audience, and if the campaign is progressing towards the conversion goals.

It is very important that progress is continually monitored through analytical reports, to ensure the campaign is working well and converting the budget into desired page likes etc. This data can be used to increase campaign success in future adverts and campaigns, tweaking images, content and allocated budget to correspond to what the audiences wants.

A successful campaign requires good initial setup, effective audience targeting, a solid concept and assets, as well as continual monitoring and adaption. A good example of this process comes from our recent work with a gym.

Case Study:
Big Wave Media was approached by a gym to help boost membership sales. We responded by creating a social media competition offering Facebook users the chance to win a 1 year membership. The mechanism for conversion was a Facebook App that was developed and installed on the gym’s Facebook page. This allowed people to view the competition and provide their details on an entry form – all without having to leave Facebook.

This competition was promoted via Facebook PPC campaigns and using organic posting as a supplement to drive reach.  Through careful planning, targeting and evaluation of analytics the campaign generated a new prospect list of 216 prospects which went on to convert 52 prospects into full direct debit members.

Through the increased presence on the social network, the gym also saw a huge uplift in presence and awareness, with an additional 507 people liking its Facebook page and being exposed to future posts.

Overall the campaign grew memberships by 52 members, added 507 likes to the Facebook page and the gym had another 154 prospects to follow up on – plus 1 lucky winner won a year’s free membership!

Lucky no. 7 – our Facebook advertising check list:

  1. Define your goals.
  2. Define your audience and targeting criteria.
  3. Use a great concept.
  4. Use eye catching images.
  5. Use appealing headlines and additional copy.
  6. Monitor campaigns consistently.
  7. Evaluate and adapt the campaign content.

Get started
If you don’t want to jump in at the deep end then Big Wave Media offer a wide range of social media services from Facebook campaign and PPC advertising management to Facebook app creation. To chat about how you could utilise social media to grow your business please call us on 0845 643 2385 or complete our contact form and we’ll be in touch.

Posted in Advertising, Digital, Digital Marketing, Facebook, Mobile Marketing, Social, Social Media | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What is Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and why your website needs it

Search engine optimisation (SEO)

Search engine optimisation (SEO) packages from Big Wave Media

Having a great website is not a process of ‘build it and they will come’. If you want new customers you’ll want to be found by people who are looking for what you have to offer, so you’ll need Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).

SEO is a process of optimising your website so people can find you in search engines (such as Google).

People use keywords to find products and services online and it’s the job of SEO to get your website in front of these people. Effective SEO helps drive more visitors to your website and more customers to your business. If your SEO is done correctly then you will benefit from it for a longer period down the line which makes it a worthwhile investment.

Why do you need it?
For many businesses their online presence is the key to their success. For others their website is the main aspect of attracting new customers and growing their business. Either way your website can be the core way the online world sees and engages with you. Can you afford not to do it properly?

As search engines continue to evolve and update their requirements it remains more important than ever that your website works within these parameters.

With so many companies already undertaking SEO as part of their online marketing efforts the competition grows daily for the attention of your customers. The good news is it is never too late to start on your SEO. An effective SEO campaign will get you in front of potential customers and increase the amount of people you do business with.

How to start and how it works
Start with benchmarking the current status of your website.  Look at key elements such as page titles, meta descriptions, back links, keyword placement as well as your position against your competitors. This gives an understanding of any areas which need to be improved and shows how your website will benefit from SEO work.

By making changes to these and other aspects it ensures your website remains compliant and updated to the demands of the search engines. Above all effective SEO is all about being relevant to potential customers.

SEO options from Big Wave Media
At Big Wave Media, our SEO services have evolved over years to conform to the daily changes and requirements of the search engines. This way we can ensure your site receives relevant traffic using methods which will only enhance your websites ability to grow your business.

We have a range of packages tailored to the needs of your budget that covers the key elements your website needs to thrive in the search engines and attract those new customers.

These range from:
Initial site audit (a website MOT)
Quarterly audits
Monthly SEO packages

All important aspects of SEO are addressed so whichever package you choose we offer a bespoke approach to your desired goals. You will received monthly reports on the work undertaken and the progress your site is making – you’ll also be able to discuss any aspects of the project with us.

Get started
To find out about your SEO options please call us on 0845 643 2385 or complete our contact form and we’ll come back to you. We are currently offering a website MOT – a full site SEO audit for half price!

Posted in Devon, Digital, Digital Marketing, Google, Search Engine Optimisation, Social, Uncategorized, Web Development, Website | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Placement at Big Wave Media

My name is Helen, and I am currently on a 2 week placement with Big Wave Media working within Digital team.

I graduated in 2013 from Cardiff University with an English Language and Communications 1st Class BA. After graduating I worked in Media Planning with Golley Slater, and as a Marketing Executive with Eversheds LLP in Cardiff. I decided to up route and move to Devon this summer, and luckily, Big Wave were able to accommodate me for a short stint in Digital Marketing.

I had already experienced the digital world during my previous roles but only within a media buying/planning remit, such as Google Analytics, Facebook PPC and Google Display Networks. Therefore, I wanted to brush up my skills before starting my new job in late July, aiming to expand my knowledge of Hootsuite (a social media management platform) and other digital marketing tools and techniques.

Working alongside Big Wave Media’s Digital Marketing Executive Hayley, we managed social media feeds for a range of clients, ensuring their Facebook and Twitter feeds are abundant with content. I constructed well over 400 tweets and Facebook posts, tailoring them for different clients events, shows and offers. This taught me new elements to using Hootsuite, in particular scheduling and bulk uploading a range of tweets. The ability to shirk URL’s quickly became a life saver as 140 characters is a short space! Other duties included researching and drafting content for infographics and assisting in the production of social media reports.

I was also lucky enough to be sat next to the Web Developers within the Digital Team, and Nick was kind enough to show me a programme called Code Academy, a free online tutorial to HTML. I had previously dabbled in HTML and CSS, so I was thrilled to be able to expand these skills. Having the web team sat nearby meant that it was easy for me to bug them with any questions I had!

I came to Big Wave with an aim of brushing up on my social media based skills, as well as learning anything extra about Digital Marketing and I feel this is exactly what I have done. I start my new job in Exeter later this July, working in Marketing and Events and I feel this placement has equipped me with some additional tools I can use to excel there.

Thank you Big Wave, it’s been grand :)

 

Posted in Blog, Devon, Digital, Digital Marketing, Facebook, Google, Internship, Social Media, Twitter, Web Development, Website | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Team Big Wave take on a Summer of Fitness

As you may be aware from our relentless tweeting and pleading, team Big Wave Media took part in the 15th Michelmore’s 5K Charity Run on Tuesday 10th June. The sun was shining as over 800 people in (very) bright yellow t-shirts gathered at Exeter’s Cathedral Green for a quick warm up and the beginning of the race. The event was a great success and everyone crossed the finish line at Exeter Castle where we collected our goody bags and a well-deserved drink!

A big thank you to everyone who supported us and sponsored our running efforts – we’ve proudly raised £535.67 for the fantastic Macmillan Cancer Support. If you would still like to donate and increase our fundraising total, please visit our Virgin Money Giving page at
http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/big-wave-media

The 2014 Michelmore’s 5K results can be viewed here. The full Big Wave Media charity run photo album can be found on our Facebook page here.

However, the fun does not stop there! Active Devon are keen to keep everyone physically active so we’re continuing a summer of fun with workplace Rounder’s! The weekly event held at Exeter’s Flowerpot Playing Fields will provide a great way to stay active, and we can’t pretend that we’re not looking forward to the sociable drinks afterwards! We’ve entered our team and the first game starts on Thursday 26th June. Wish us luck and keep your fingers crossed for sunshine!

For more information regarding workplace Rounders, please contact Active Devon directly at active@devon.gov.uk or 01392 263674.

Posted in Blog, Devon, Facebook, Fitness, Health, Leisure, News, Social Media, Sports, Twitter | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Proofhub – your online proofing tool

Client surveys and insightful comments highlighted the amendment process as an area clients would like us to work on to improve. We have listened to client feedback and developed a state of the art system to improve the amendment process. Over the next week, all Big Wave Media clients will be introduced to our new system called Proofhub. This upgrade is free.

This smart online proofing tool manages the review and approval process of creative content, restructuring the delivery of your marketing projects. We hope this will significantly enhance your experience by improving accuracy, efficiency and speed, and ultimately streamlining the amend process.

“The team at Big Wave is excited at the development of Proofhub and we can’t wait to share this new service and start to see the results. We have consciously listened to important client feedback and made the decision to completely change the proofing process. Proofhub will be pivotal in improving the client experience and will provide a streamlined and innovative way of working.”

Tom Gozna
Operations Director

Here’s how your relationship with Big Wave Media may improve through the benefits of Proofhub:

Mark-Up and Commenting Tools

  • Easy-to-use, non-technical visual tools;
  • Concise feedback process ensuring no amends are lost in translation;

Collaborative Workflow

  • Simultaneous or consecutive real-time discussions;
  • Eliminates multiple emails through the standardised review process;

Easily Manage the Approval Process

  • Track activity progress;
  • Enhanced project management through the development of proof deadlines;
  • Final, electronic sign-offs decided by a lead reviewer;
  • Synchronised versions archived in Proofhub to easily review design progression;

Preview Large Files in Seconds

  • Faster distribution of digital content;
  • No need to download PDF’s and use multi programmes;
  • Safeguards artwork, eliminating the risk of downloading low-res proofs.

We have recently trialled the system with a number of clients and found the online proofing tool to be a great success. Below is some of the feedback we have received so far:

Proofhub makes the difference! It provides an elegant and simple way to amend any
artwork, no matter how complex. The comment tools allow the user to pinpoint and
amend their proofs in a clear format without the need to explain everything in an email.
The drawing tools also make it easy to illustrate your thoughts. We at DCLT have found
it has significantly improved the whole proofing process, fast, effective and simple; It’s a
pleasure to use.”

Jordan Sharples
Marketing Co-ordinator
Doncaster Culture and Leisure Trust

Proofhub is working well for me. This is mainly because it reduces the amount
of emails and eliminates the need to attach sign off and amends forms.
Overall I think it is efficient and easy to use.”

Corinne Jones
Marketing Assistant
Soll Leisure

Proofhub is very quick and easy to use system which has saved me time and is not an
over complicated site. I have had some training but have found that with regular
use of the site you can pick it up really quickly on your own.”

Sheryl Kirkby
Group Marketing Executive
Impulse Leisure

Proofhub will generate a much better proofing process, resulting in quicker project turnaround times. We aim to complete each job’s review and approval process within the six pdf versions per job that are automatically provided by the Proofhub system and your service level agreement (SLA). However, should you require more than the available six versions, each additional proof will be charged at £10. Any errors created by Big Wave Media during the amendment process will not be charged.

Upgrade to a Satellite Account

A Satellite account is an upgraded account, allowing you to benefit from additional features such as your own dashboard.  The online dashboard is set up and managed from within your personalised account. The dashboard enables easy access and management of all current proofs and historical jobs.

A Satellite Account will also enable you to review your Proofhub proofs on the move using a free app which is available to download on the Apple iTunes store.

Satellite accounts are available to purchase for an £800 annual subscription for up to 5 users.


We will be contacting all clients to arrange a Proofhub training session. If you have any questions, or to book your session now, please call 0845 643 2385 or email lukesimpson@bigwavemedia.co.uk

Posted in Blog, Creative Design, Devon, Digital, Digital Marketing, Graphic Design, News, Proofhub, Website | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Roller-way the calories

It’s a struggle for Big Wave Staff to remain physically active during the working week due to sedentary office roles (unless you count moving a mouse feverishly around a desk and making trips to the kitchen to fuel up on coffee as particularly effective ways to burn calories)! Although when the office closes it’s a different story…

With the introduction of MYZONE® belts for all employees, getting active just took on a competitive twist! The team generally go to the gym and play a variety of sports including badminton, rugby and rock climbing. They’ve even organised an after work running club in preparation for the Michelmores 5K Charity Run on Tuesday 10th June!

However, Client Relationship Manager, Maria Sowden who started working with Big Wave in December 2012, has a slightly more unusual way of earning her MYZONE® Points – Roller Derby. She belongs to local team The South West Angels of Terror, burning an impressive amount of calories and earning a huge number of effort points which usually place her at the top of the leader board.

What is Roller Derby?

  • The predominately female sport is fast moving, requires a lot of stamina and is very tactical.
  • It’s a game played on Quad Roller Skates, with 2 teams of 5 skating anti clockwise around an oval track in a sports centre.
  • Teams are made up of 1 Jammer (they score points by overtaking members of the other team) and 4 blockers (the members who assist their jammer to score points by knocking the opposing teams players out of the way and making a clear path)

The full contact sport may seem rough, but all team members are well equipped with a safety helmet, gum shield, elbow, and wrist and knee pads. It is also required from each and every skater to pass a minimum skills test before they can play. This involves stopping safely, demonstration of agility, taking and receiving hits and illustration of sufficient fitness levels by skating 27 circuits of a sports hall in less than 5 minutes. This may sound like a long time until you realise the average circuit must take no more than 11 seconds to complete!

On average, a 2 hour Roller Derby training session has seen Maria burn up to 1,800 calories and earn 632 MYZONE® effort points. During a game these figures have increased to over 2,200 calories!

Whatever your chosen sport, MYZONE® belts are a great way of tracking your exercise activity and are highly effective at pushing your training boundaries.

Check out Maria’s Roller Derby team blog here. To sponsor #TeamBigWave on their 5km run please visit our VirginMoney Giving page.

 

Posted in Badminton, Blog, Devon, Digital, Fitness, Health, Uncategorized, Website | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ticket system keeps track of web amends

Across May we will be officially rolling out our new website support ticketing system.
This will help us address client website amends and development requests more effectively and efficiently.

Big Wave Media Ticket system

Here are some of the major improvements clients will experience:

  • You can submit and prioritise your website amends
  • You can submit and track development requests
  • You can report service issues
  • No need to login – simply email a support request and a ticket will be auto generated
  • Responses come straight back into your inbox
  • You can reply to a ticket response by simply replying to the email
  • A complete history trail is stored and you can re-open old tickets
  • Our knowledge base is integrated into our ticketing system, meaning we can respond with detailed, step-by-step instructions to many common questions.
  • A ticket portal allows you instant access to your open (and closed) tickets and their status as we work to respond to your requests.
  • The portal also enables you to search our knowledge base.

We are formally rolling out the new ticket system across May. Using the system requires a unique email address in the portal for each user. Over the next few weeks we will be reaching out to clients to provide access.

If you have a web project or are looking for a new website build please contact us.

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