Hi there!

Welcome to my blog! Here, I share my ideas and insights on digital marketing and managing online businesses. I work with product specialists, content creators and web developers across a diverse array of industry sectors. We assist small business owners and entrepreneurs enhance their online presence. Technology is moving so fast, disrupting many industries. I hope that our combined experiences and knowledge on marketing & managing online businesses will help many people who have decided to take their business online. Let's learn together, continuously! Please contact me at 027 460 2555 or reach out via Instagram @gomanawatu @whanganui.

4 Important Elements of Digital Marketing

Whilst there could be many tools, tricks and tips on digital marketing, there are 4 fundamental elements that, when integrated, will yield the most significant results.  This is a summary:

1. Data
Historical data of website traffic, page insights, conversion rates, attributions etc. These data could be tracked and measured over a period of time and could be compared with other time periods or benchmarks.  Data serves as a useful guide to any digital marketer or business owner when deciding on which activities, efforts, images, text, strategies and channels to pursue. The key here is to use data as a *guide*, to anticipate and predict results.

2. Market Analysis
There are 3 main groups of markets to initially study or learn when thinking of a digital marketing strategy. First is the macro environment - knowledge of general market trends. Basics would be "how is the world changing - in terms of customer behaviour and preferences" (as an example) Second is the industry, a smaller subset of the macro environment - knowledge of trends in the digital marketing industry and readiness to learn to use the new or most effective tools to use. However the industry study also includes the industry of the business itself, whether it be hospitality, air travel, fashion, professional services, design, real estate etc. Third would be the direct competition. A solid assessment of the business position with regard to pricing, service packages and offering/capabilities will need to be done. There should be strong awareness of the business' strengths and weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

3. Content 
Timeless content will not only save time in terms of creating presentation documents and online press releases or blogs; but will also enhance the credibility of a business. Product presentations, descriptions will need to accurately represent the business. A very effective content marketing approach is promoting helpful and educational content. Consistent delivery of helpful content to target customers will keep your brand on top of mind.

4. Customer Service
The most effective after-sales marketing tool which could be used to up-sell to and retain customers is customer service. Now, there are many ways to stay in touch, offer new products and give benefits to existing customers with the use of various social media and email marketing tools. However, the fundamental idea remains - that the way customers are treated will reap business rewards and even earn referrals.


Meetups Over Coffee - Digital Marketing

We conduct free meetings over coffee for community and non-profit organisations.  Typically, meetings last for 1-2 hours, held at central cafes in Palmerston North and Whanganui if held in New Zealand.

The best group size is ideally up to 5 participants (minimum 3) so that our resource person would be able to handle as many questions as possible and each participant would be able to tell his/her story. We normally discuss ideas on online marketing, new tips, questions about how to use different online marketing platforms, etc.

If you are interested in hosting a coffee meetup with us, please contact us at 09 889 0515 or 027 460 2555.

For small businesses, we offer a more tailored training for your organisation, please contact us for custom training sessions.

Artificial Intelligence and Online Marketing for Small Businesses

The global artificial intelligence race is on! Facebook, Amazon, Google, Alibaba are amongst the billion-dollar companies in play.

Google is one of the leading FAANG companies that has devoted huge amount of investments in artificial intelligence and machine learning. Almost everyday, new developments on Artificial Intelligence are announced on news and social media. Now with Tensorflow, Google's opensource AI framework is more accessible to more people who are willing to learn and experiment.

It's a good time to correct the myths surrounding Artificial Intelligence to give small business owners an edge and enable them to be more sustainable in the long term.

The 3 myths:

1) The insurmountable learning curve for small business owners.

Artificial intelligence is developed give people an easier life. The general attitude to machine learning technologies and artificial intelligence is to view this technological advancement as an opportunity to improve business processes not just in marketing but also in operations, customer service and accounting.

2) Marketing costs will rise especially in the digital arena.

Understandable. There is a fear that experts will charge a lot of money for their knowledge. To view marketing as an expense is debatable. Marketing is an investment, it's putting money into a system that is supposed to yield more gains for a business. The focus should be on the value of the ROI (return of investment).  It's important for the business owner to be able to quantify and track his marketing efforts to make the best judgment on which channel to use. Consider the Chat bots - an artificial intelligence application that allows businesses to have a higher level of engagement with customers without having to hire staff. Chat bots can be deployed on any web page or Facebook page and respond to customers questions via chat messaging in real time. Chat bots can handle multiple conversations at the same time. Chat bots are also self-learning.

3) Online Marketing will be so much more complicated.

Step back a little. Digital marketing is just traditional marketing using digital technology to distribute content on a faster and global scale. The core concepts of beautiful storytelling, educational information that appeals to the target audience, proper representation of company values, etc - these concepts still remain. Artificial intelligence in marketing allows businesses to dig deeper, immensely faster into data that will allow business owners to make better decisions about how to improve their marketing methods.

Libra Coin, Facebook's Answer to Bitcoin - Social Media & Crytpocurrency

Hello Libra!

This is a powerful integration, no doubt. This is a game changer which is backed by billion dollar companies like Paypal.

Just recently, Mark Zuckerberg announced that the future of the internet is privacy. Data encryption, security, regulation and trust are key words.

In the last 24 hours, Mark Zuckerberg formally announces Libra - a system that would allow Facebook users via Whatsapp & Messenger to send and receive money for close to zero costs, securely.


Today, Facebook is coming together with 27 organizations around the world to start the non-profit Libra Association and create a new currency called Libra. 

Libra's mission is to create a simple global financial infrastructure that empowers billions of people around the world. It's powered by blockchain technology and the plan is to launch it in 2020. You can read more about the association here: https://libra.org

Being able to use mobile money can have an important positive impact on people's lives because you don't have to always carry cash, which can be insecure, or pay extra fees for transfers. This is especially important for people who don't have access to traditional banks or financial services. Right now, there are around a billion people who don't have a bank account but do have a mobile phone. 

We aspire to make it easy for everyone to send and receive money just like you use our apps to instantly share messages and photos. To enable this, Facebook is also launching an independent subsidiary called Calibra that will build services that let you send, spend and save Libra -- starting with a digital wallet that will be available in WhatsApp and Messenger and as a standalone app next year. 

Calibra will be regulated like other payment service providers. Any information you share with Calibra will be kept separate from information you share on Facebook. From the beginning, Calibra will let you send Libra to almost anyone with a smartphone at low to no cost. Over time, we hope to offer more services for people and businesses -- like paying bills with the push of a button, buying coffee with the scan of a code, or riding local public transit without needing to carry cash or a metro pass.

In addition to our efforts, many other companies will build their own services using Libra -- from payment companies like Mastercard, PayPal, PayU, Stripe and Visa, to popular services like Booking, eBay, Farfetch, Lyft, Spotify and Uber, to non-profits doing important work around financial inclusion like Kiva, Mercy Corps and Women's World Banking, to companies in the crypto space like Anchorage, Coinbase, Xapo, and Bison Trails. A number of leading Venture firms are also joining to help drive innovation on the Libra network. We're hoping to have over 100 cofounding members of the Libra Association by the time the network launches next year.

All of this is built on blockchain technology. It's decentralized -- meaning it's run by many different organizations instead of just one, making the system fairer overall. It's available to anyone with an internet connection and has low fees and costs. And it's secured by cryptography which helps keep your money safe. 

This is an important part of our vision for a privacy-focused social platform -- where you can interact in all the ways you'd want privately, from messaging to secure payments. 

Privacy and safety will be built into every step. For example, Calibra will have a dedicated team of experts in risk management focused on preventing people from using Calibra for fraudulent purposes. We'll provide fraud protection so if you lose your Libra coins, we'll offer refunds. We also believe it's important for people to have choices so you'll have the options to use many other third-party wallets on the Libra network. 

There's still a lot more to learn and do before Libra will be ready to officially launch. We know it's a major undertaking and responsibility -- and we're committed to getting this right. We've been working with policymakers and experts in areas like financial inclusion, economics, security, privacy and blockchain, and we'll continue listening to their feedback as we figure out the best way to move forward. We're thankful for their partnership, and for all the businesses, organizations, and academic institutions that are part of the Libra Association. 

This is the beginning of an exciting journey and I'm looking forward to sharing more soon.

- Mark Zuckerburg, Facebook
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