Are Mobile Apps close to extinction?

Digital technology has taken the world by storm. The labyrinth nature of the Internet has engulfed us with a blanket of convenience, making the world a much smaller place to live in. From booking a cab to ordering pizza, we have been spoilt for choice with the number of apps available in the market. Ever since the concept of applications was invented, these tiny widgets have evolved from the phone and tabs to laptops and even smart TVs.

In the past few years, there has been a drastic increase in the number of apps; however, the number of active app users have remained stagnant. According to a study, the average mobile app retention rate is just 20% after 90 days. Even if they have stayed on and not deleted the app, on an average, more than 75% of users fail to return the day after first use. These figures make us wonder – are mobile apps close to extinction?

While some of the essentials apps such as Whatsapp and Facebook will remain an active app on the phone, the rest of them will predominantly disappear. So, what is the future?

Progressive Web Apps – The future of apps

The newest trend observed on the Internet is the emergence of websites with app-like behaviour in a browser. A shortcut to these websites can then directly be added to your device home screen based on how frequently you visit them. The progressive functions of these app-like websites have coined the term Progressive Web Apps, which is the next big thing in the effervescent digital world.

Features of Progressive Web Apps

  • A Progressive Web App integrates the experience of an app in a website, providing you with the best of both worlds.
  • They look like normal websites that can be accessed from your browser. Based on your usage, the website will prompt you to add it as an icon on your home screen for direct access. With a direct shortcut, you can skip the process of visiting the website from your browser every time you log in.
  • These websites are typically displayed in full-screen without a website frame, giving the user an app-like experience.
  • With the progressive usage of these websites, you can experience full-fledged app behaviour by granting permissions to access your device camera and contacts, as per the functions of the page.
  • PWAs run on a javascript embedded with application shell architecture. These codes run in the background of the page and pre-load frequently visited images and information in the cache memory. This provides higher speed in loading the page with the combined benefit of easy offline usage.
  • A PWA requires minimal page refreshes as it works like an app and not a conventional web page.

Advantages of PWAs

  • A Progressive Web App eliminates the need to search for the native app in an app store and download it, consuming mobile data and time.
  • It will send you notifications over time only after repeated usage, living up to its progressive nature.
  • It loads very quickly, even in places of low connectivity, due to its exquisite application shell model.
  • Contrary to native apps, it does not take up as much space on the phone. It just provides you with a shortcut to the website which will behave like an app.
  • It does not hamper your privacy settings or permissions. Even if it does, it will be over a span of time, based on your usage.
  • The PWA does not need to be customized for iOS and Android platforms.
  • It caters to feature-phones and entry-level smartphones that do not have enough space for multiple apps.
  • While digital marketing is evolving in tier 2 and 3 cities, 4G connectivity is still an alien concept. PWA is the perfect alternative to an app in Tier 2 and Tier 3.
  • It also caters to the generation who are new to the Internet world for whom downloading an app is a tedious process.

How can PWAs benefit brands?

Apart from the plethora of advantages an app user faces, a progressive web app can widely benefit any brand or organization. Gone are the days when websites were merely developed for desktop usage and apps for mobile phones. Considering the fact that most of the organic traffic comes through mobile, it is now mandatory for organisations to take their digital game up a notch to cater to their target audiences. A PWA fills in the gap between an app and a website and is the perfect solution for increased sales or leads.

Furthermore, the cutting-edge application shell architecture used in progressive web apps makes it ideal for e-commerce websites. It eradicates the need to download the app and provides the user with the added benefits of higher page loading speed and enhanced performance in places of limited connectivity.

A lot of leading organisations have already incorporated the concept of Progressive Web Apps in their digital space. Flipkart and Ola are few of the early adopters of this technology. So, its time for mobile apps to move on and welcome PWAs.

How to transform your lead generation via a landing page?

If you are running a business online, you should know by now that generating leads is everything. Lead generation is the single most important aspect of digital marketing that helps your business grow.

If you are looking to capture more targeted leads through digital media, one of the main things that you would need is a well optimised, highly targeted landing page. Still not convinced? Here’s an example!

Conversion Rate Experts, world’s leading agency for conversion rate optimisation (CRO), helped Moz, then SEOmoz, generate $1,000,000 million with just one landing page that had an alluring call to action. What’s more? This revenue was generated by the fantastic landing page and few emails within four months.

You can read the complete case study here.

One of the takeaways from the above case study is that improved user experience helps in lead generation.

So, are you looking to improve the user experience of your landing pages and, in turn, increase your lead generation? Read on!

Designing and managing the perfect landing page

Consider your landing page as a system that will convince your page visitors to become your customers. A well-designed landing page, by itself, can help increase lead generation and conversion. Here are some tips to create an appealing landing page.

Use a captivating headline which increases the curiosity of the visitors

Instead of a typical headline, which screams “buy me,” use an enchanting headline that would garner your visitors’ attention.

For example, a landing page headline like this – Your One Stop for a Beautiful Kitchen – would interest the visitors a lot more than headlines that talk only about selling.do my home landing page

Understand your audience

This is easier said than done. How can you possibly understand someone whom you hardly know? However, understanding your prospective audience and designing the page keeping them in mind is absolutely necessary.

In terms of design, a good idea would be to have a quick A/B testing done and experiment with heat maps on your site. Analyse the results and rework on the design perspective if necessary.Understand the audience before creating a landing page

If you are creating a landing page to get your visitors to download your content,  one way to do that is to research on what people are searching for in your domain and offer them that. Keeping the target audience in mind, we built a landing page for one of our esteemed clients, Casagrand. Casagrand is one of Chennai’s leading real estate developers with premium projects completed in and around the city. Since their target audience mainly consisted of potential home buyers, we created a handy e-book titled, “Chennai Home Buyers Guide” which consisted of useful tips and suggestions to make the process of buying a home easy and hassle-free. We created a landing page in which visitors had to fill in their details for a free copy of the e-book. This strategy was a win-win for both the customers and our client as the customers walked away with a detailed e-book on buying a home and Casagrand just got a lead of a potential home buyer who is looking for projects to invest in.ebook landing page

Be precise in your stand

You might be tempted to put all the information you have on the landing page. However, you must understand that the landing page design has only one purpose to serve – to get users to click on your call-to-action (CTA).

When you overload the page with too much information, it might have an adverse effect as it might become daunting to someone reading it for the first time. Understand that most users are going to read your landing page content and see the design for the first time. They must be able to grab the information they are looking for from the website. That’s when they will become potential customers for your business.

Furthermore, highlight the major benefits of your service or product on the landing page in a significant and striking manner. This will appeal to visitors and persuade them to become your customers.

Here’s an example of a landing page that is to the point.a precise landing page

This landing page scrolls through six sections with each section describing information that users would like to know. In the image shown above, the section project info has listed all the efficient and important project information in the form of bullets; this would be easy for people to read and understand quickly.

Opt for the right tools

To accomplish a task efficiently, you must use the right tool. As the good old saying goes, “You can use a screwdriver to pound in nails, but it’s a lot harder.” You don’t have to do it the hard way always. Understand that sometimes the right way can be easy too.

There are lots of simple landing page creation tools out there, and each one is unique. You must analyse and pick the right tools for you. Some of the tools that we recommend are:

Instapage – it’s a simple, hassle-free landing page tool. It’s a drag-and-drop software tool that has a lot of professional web design templates.

Unbounce – This is another drag-and-drop software tool. It’s quite simple and recommended for beginners.

LeadPages – One of the most well-known landing page creator tools available online is LeadPages. Most top bloggers and businesses use this tool.

Use relevant and alluring visuals

“A picture is worth a thousand words” – This good old saying holds good, especially while creating high-converting landing pages.

Imagine reading the below-mentioned blog page with zero visuals! Tough, isn’t it? Even a blog needs images and other forms of visual support, so landing pages must definitely be visually intense.

visual intense landing page

It is always a good idea to use images, videos, 360-degree photos/videos, infographics, maps, etc. Visuals help users to understand your page quicker. Additionally, having an image or video on your landing page leaves a more enduring impression on users’ minds than written content. Check out our blog on the type of content your target audience will find engaging for a detailed understanding of how content marketing can make your brand trend.

Another visual element that matters a lot is the font that you use; use fonts that are catchy and don’t come across as too overpowering.

Optimize your call-to-action/sign-up section for conversions

If you think that you can simply use some opt-in or CTA form and gain leads, you are absolutely wrong. The type of information you put in your CTA form and the way you design it play a major role in increasing conversions. For example, instead of simply asking someone to sign up to your page, you can ask them to sign up to get newsletters or sign up to get daily tips. Also, captions like “connect with us for…” may work well in increasing sign-ups and conversions.a strong call to action

Use customer testimonials

Using real-time customer testimonials is a great way to increase the credibility of your business. Reviews by customers will definitely create a positive image about your business to first-time visitors of your page, and this might, in turn, help in converting them into your customers. It’s a proven fact that customer testimonials improve sales. This option could be left out, for the time being, if you are a new business.

Follow-up emails

Last but not the least, following up with your leads or subscribers is important. Once you have designed a landing page by keeping all these aspects in your mind, you can definitely expect quite a significant number of leads generated from the landing page. Once that happens, the next step is to convert your subscribers into customers. One way of doing that is to call them up on the numbers provided and talk to them about your business. A subtle way is to send them emails.

However, while sending emails, you must not restrict to sending promotional emails or regular newsletters. Alternatively, it is advisable to send your subscribers a series of crafted emails that will appeal to them. At times, include details about deals and offers, but don’t make this a practice. For more insights, check out our blog on the different ways email marketing can work for you.

Never be afraid of sending more emails. However, refrain yourself from sending emails that follow a standard template. The more you send personalised or crafty emails, the more are the chances of converting your subscribers into customers.

Managing your business and marketing it digitally consumes equal, or at times, even more, time, money, and energy when compared to its traditional counterpart. By creating an influential and captivating landing page, you are investing in a driving force to convert your visitors to potential clients.

The winning formula to generate more B2B leads

Whatever be the type of business you are running or the industry you are from, generating leads is what it all comes down to. Without leads, you do not have any customers, no profit, no revenue and ultimately, no business. However, generating these leads is the biggest challenge every marketer faces, especially for a B2B business. Truth be told, there is no fool-proof formula to generate a predetermined number of leads every month. But, it’s not impossible! To get a good amount of leads, you need to make sure you have a steady and constant marketing strategy. Your main objective should be to create a well-established relationship with your target audience. It is these types of conversations and constant generation of information that intrigues readers and ultimately converts them into consumers.

So, as a business owner or an entrepreneur, how do you generate leads to grow your B2B business? Let’s take a look at few of the tried-and-tested ways.

Landing Page

No lead generation strategy is complete without a landing page. A landing page is a web page that collects the visitor’s information through a lead form.  Whether you are promoting your product or allowing visitors to download content (ebooks, webinars and podcasts), building a landing page is often the solution. Making a landing page will ensure that you can target the right audience, showcase your work or product and convert the visitors into leads. A targeted landing page will help you capture leads at a higher rate and will help the sales team convert these leads easily.

A good landing page, especially for B2B, needs to always have a clear headline, copy and direct call-to-action, so that the target audience understands exactly what they are signing up for.  This is exactly what we did for one of our B2B clients Dura Ultima. The landing page clearly conveys what the company does and what you are registering for.

Social Media Marketing

It is safe to say that in a parallel dimension, if digital media is a physical space, then social media platforms are where the happening parties would be at. Everyone who is anyone is on social media. So, it is natural to conclude that showcasing your products and services on these platforms is a guaranteed way to generate leads for your business. However, a mere social media presence is not enough. If your strategy is to put up a particular number of posts a day, get ready to be marked off as spam. When it comes to lead generation, you need a detailed strategy to converse with potential clients online and have a unique approach in converting them to leads. Here are few of the techniques you can follow based on two of the leading social media platforms for B2B lead generation – Facebook and LinkedIn.

Facebook

Facebook is the holy grail of social media marketing. It is a great platform to find clients who can benefit from your business as you both work hand-in-hand in taking each other’s organisations to towering heights. From eye-catching Facebook carousal ads to trendy features like Facebook Live, the world is your oyster when it comes to marketing on Facebook. Read on for fool-proof methods to generate quality leads for your B2B organisation on Facebook.

Lead ads

As the name suggests, a lead ad is an ad you run on Facebook with the sole purpose of generating leads. These ads offer the users with the benefit of filling a lead form on the Facebook page without the need to switch to a landing page or a website.

Website click and conversion ads

Showcasing your products and services through website click ads is an effective way to intrigue your target audience and get them to visit your website. All you need to do is promote your content, services, products and deliverables on Facebook and monitor the cost per click (CPC) for the total amount you ran the ad for. The lesser your CPC, the more number of visitors are visiting your website.

Conversion ads, on the other hand, lead the visitors to a page with a conversion form. You can customise your form with a call to action of your choice as per your marketing plan. Choose from a plethora of actions from “Enquire now” to “Sign up for weekly newsletter”.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the biggest professional network in the world, so when it comes to finding potential clients for your B2B business, it is your haven. In order to effectively generate leads on LinkedIn, having an active and up-to-date company account on LinkedIn is of utmost importance. Apart from that, it is also crucial to actively be part of various LinkedIn groups that are related to your business model. As far as lead generation is concerned, the fact that many other business professionals like you are on LinkedIn, trying to generate leads for their companies, is half the problem solved. As for the other half of the problem, read on to find out what are the tools you can leverage on LinkedIn to widen your clientele.

linkedin

LinkedIn Lead Ads

LinkedIn lead ads are the latest feature introduced by the platform, which is taking lead generation for B2B businesses to the next level. They work like usual lead ads, except that when you click on the call to action, the browser takes the user to a pre-filled lead form. The form is pre-filled with information retrieved from the user’s profile, eliminating the need to fill it up manually. Apart from saving a lot of time and effort, this feature allows users to fill in the lead form in the LinkedIn page itself without the need to visit a landing page or website.

InMail Ads

InMail Ads are ads presented in the form of emails to the LinkedIn inbox of your target audience. This form of marketing is extremely effective as you get to handpick your audience based on their LinkedIn profile and do not need their personal or professional email ids to reach them. Additionally, these emails have a guaranteed delivery rate as they are sent only to the active LinkedIn users. Apart from products and services, you can also use InMails to promote your content and initiate downloads of ebooks and promotional videos.

LinkedIn Ads

LinkedIn Ads are a great way to create awareness about your brand and promote your services. Since LinkedIn is the world’s leading professional marketing platform, you can directly reach senior-level executives and CEOs with detailed targeting. This provides you with a window of opportunity to showcase your brand to the decision makers of leading organisations and leverage the ad to convert them into quality leads.

LinkedIn Ads

We leveraged Linked ads for one of our B2B clients – BijliPay. We promoted an extensive in-house blog on the benefits of choosing mPOS devices over the traditional POS devices. The blog gives the reader a detailed insight into the services provided by BijliPay and indirectly works as a lead generation platform to convert the reader into a potential client.

Search Engine Optimisation

Though social media marketing and sponsored ads are the sure-shot way to generate leads, there is a constant source that does not fail to convert visitors to loyal clients – which is organic traffic to your website. This is when Search Engine Optimisation comes to your rescue. Optimising your website to ensure it shows up on the first page of Google search is a guaranteed way to boost your brand image and increase your website traffic.

The logic is simple. Most people searching for B2B services on the internet are looking to close the deal. Presenting them with your website is a guaranteed way to effective lead generation for your organisation. As per a recent study, the close rate of an SEO lead is a whopping 14.6% while the close rate of a sponsored lead is a mere 1.7%. Additionally, of the overall local Google traffic, 67% of searches end up in a conversion. With such stunning numbers, there is no doubt that SEO is the most-effective long-term lead generation strategy for B2B businesses.

But, how do you ensure your website is the answer to what the general public is searching for? The trick lies in decoding what type of content your target audience will find engaging and the use of relevant keywords in your content. You also need a good social media marketing strategy for effective search engine optimisation. To get a closer insight, let’s dive into the effervescent ocean of content marketing.

Content Marketing

As the age-old saying goes, Content is King. This has been a fool-proof advertising strategy for decades to come and the reign still continues. The biggest advantage of using content marketing instead of advertising as your lead generation strategy is that it reaches users who have activated ad blockers. Additionally, in contrast to sponsored ads, it showcases your services in different methods and mediums to potential clients till they ultimately fall prey and convert into leads. Furthermore, advertising your product through content marketing also helps in boosting organic traffic to your website and effective search engine optimisation.

Let’s take a look at the various mediums of content you can use to leverage content marketing to make your brand trend and as the go-to lead generation strategy for your B2B business.

Blogs

Blogs have become essential for every business and are the best way to generate informative and educative content about your brand and use them to reach your target audience which will ultimately generate premium leads. Blogs are also a guaranteed SEO friendly marketing method that generates organic traffic to your website. For an effective lead generation, you can promote the blogs on social media direct the traffic to a conversion form.

Videos

Videos are the next-big-thing in content marketing for obvious reasons. If pictures can speak a thousand words, it is safe to say that videos present the viewers with a thousand pictures. It gives the viewers a detailed insight into the products and services offered by your company which plays a huge role in influencing their decision to convert into leads. A whiteboard video explaining a solution to a particular problem in your industry to a product-centric video, opportunities are aplenty.

E-books

E-books offer viewers with long-form content which is both great for SEO and lead generation. Presenting your visitors with the option to download an e-book by filling up a lead generation form gives you a hand-picked database of clients who are particularly interested in your brand as they took the time and effort to fill a form just to read your content. To generate quality leads, make sure your e-book is extremely informative and educational with the right proportion of generic and promotional content. The best way to do this is to understand what your audience is searching for and write an ebook to cater to their needs.

ebook

Reports and case studies

Content is King; everybody knows that. But backing up your content with infographics, reports, graphs and other forms of research adds tons of weight to it. In order to explain your services in a better manner, take your content strategy up a notch and present your audience with an informative case study. Nothing convinces potential clients better than examples of how much you have succeeded in the past with other B2B clients.

Webinars and podcasts

Content marketing is all about being actively involved in the digital space. Bring out your brand name by conducting webinars or interactive podcasts on topics which are trending in the audience as well as have a good connection with your brand. This will create awareness about your organisation and indirectly showcase your products and services for the world to see.

Email Marketing

So you’ve generated an extensive database, with the methods mentioned above, of potential clients who have shown interest in your services. But, what next? How do you convince these leads to get converted into meaningful clients for your B2B business? That’s when the tried-and-tested method of email marketing comes into the picture.

When it comes to converting leads for your B2B business, sometimes it is best to keep things simple. Email marketing is probably one of the first types of digital marketing, and it still remains a go-to strategy for many organisations. Apart from being extremely cost-effective, email marketing is a guaranteed way to widen your clientele as the mail cannot be missed. Additionally, you can customise your email as per the preferences of your potential clients with various techniques of retargeting and make your services even more irresistible to them.

email marketing

Furthermore, email marketing helps you stay in touch with those who are interested in your brand. Since it primarily works on the good-old email technology, you do not need any new software or plugins to leverage it. Also, emailing is a constant mode of communication which provides its users with an open platform. Unlike social media platforms, it does not need any frequent upgrading, and neither is it controlled by third parties. All you need is a strong email marketing database and a fool-proof email campaign checklist for guaranteed lead conversions.

Lead generation is the fuel that powers the bandwagon of B2B businesses. If you are from the B2B sector, its time you implement each one of the above-mentioned marketing strategies in your workplace to take your business to revolutionary heights.

5 Ways Chatbots Can Improve Your Digital Marketing Strategy

Chatbots are taking the world by storm as a unique, personal way to reach out to potential customers. With many messaging apps developing platforms for chatbots, an increasing number of people today are interacting with them in some form or the other. Advances in Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology has led to chatbots that sound human, have a sense of humour and can keep users engaged in a conversation. So what does all of this mean for brands? Chatbots allow brands to interact with their customers directly, obtain useful information from them and even guide them towards making a purchase. In short, brands today cannot afford to ignore the chatbot invasion taking place. Here are five ways you can harness the potential of chatbots to maximise the effectiveness of your digital efforts.

1. To answer customer queries

 Visitors to your site are impatient. They want information and answers to their questions quickly or they will leave. Every brand wants to answer potential customer’s queries and increase their engagement on the website. However, not every company has the resources to employ a full-time customer service team to do this. Chatbots can swoop in as a low-cost effective solution to answer questions and keep customers informed. Giving your chatbots a name and profile picture are great ways to make the interaction more human and pique the interest of potential customers. But brands aren’t the only ones benefiting from chatbots. A recent survey found that most customers also prefer asking questions over chat instead of over an email or phone calls

Chatbots are shaping up to be one of the defining trends for real estate in 2017. Social Beat has developed a chatbot for Casagrand to personally welcome each visitor to the website and help them navigate the website easier. The chatbot helps make the website more interactive so each visitor can get quick answers to their queries.

If you are looking to set up the live chats for your website, read our blog on the top 10 live chat software for your website.

2. To increase sales of your products and services

One of the most exciting avenues for chatbots to exhibit their true potential is within the realm of sales. More people today are shopping online than they ever were before. As a brand, your website will have more than a few products and you do want your customers to go through them all and make more purchases. So how do you make them see all the products, especially since people might get tired of finding exactly what they are looking for or something they might like? Chatbots come in very useful in this scenario. They can act as a personal shopping assistant. Through a series of personalized questions, the chatbots understand what a customer is looking for, what their taste preferences are and based on this information, it offers a curated selection of products for them to choose from. Customers are willing to talk to these chatbots because they sound friendly and most importantly, ‘human’.

In 2016, when Tommy Hilfiger introduced their new collection, they also did something revolutionary; they introduced chatbots for the first time. The bot welcomed users and asked them questions about their favourite prints, the occasion they were shopping for and so on. Based on their responses, the chatbot displayed pieces from their collection that matched the customer’s preferences. If users liked the outfits, the chatbot would direct them to the website where they could actually shop the look. In this way, Tommy Hilfiger was able to guide their customers’ right from the exploration to the purchasing step.

                                        tommy

3. To Understand Your Customers Better

Every brand wants to know exactly what type of content their target audience will find engaging. Most times, brands get this information by asking their customers to fill out surveys. Unfortunately, most consumers aren’t willing to go through the tedious process of filling out a long questionnaire. Chatbots are a simpler way of getting to know your customers better in a more interactive manner. Customers are also more willing to give away personal information when they know they are talking to a bot and not an actual human. Chatbots have the ability to store information that the customer provides, keep a track of their purchasing patterns and even understand any difficulties they’re facing with their shopping experience. This helps you optimize your products better to cater to their specific needs.

Harper Collins launched a chatbot that would interact with users and suggest books for them based on their preferences. Keeping track of their customer’s tastes also helped Harper Collins understand what genres to keep well stocked and what kinds of books their customers are reading.

Haprper collins bots

4. To Increase User Engagement On Your Website

A good chatbot can make a customer stay on your website and keep them entertained for a long time. The one characteristic that sets chatbots apart from other forms of marketing is that they are dynamic. Chatbots adapt according to the person they’re talking to and can keep customers engaged in fun conversations. They can also increase the number of site visits by providing your customers with relevant links and information about your products and services.

Whole Foods created a chatbot that would entertain customers and ultimately lead to more store visits. Customers could send a random selection of food emojis to the chatbot and it would come up with a recipe that utilized all of the emojis they had selected. Whole Foods would then ask their customers if they wanted to make the recipe and would direct them to their nearest Whole Foods outlet to buy the ingredients they needed. Users spent a long time on the chatbot purely because they found it a lot of fun. This left a long-lasting impression upon them and increased their overall engagement with the Whole Foods website.

bots3

5. To Personalize User Experience

Nine out of ten customers reported that personalization played a huge role when they decided to buy something. Today, digital marketing has been able to reach out to more people than ever before. However, customers aren’t likely to be attracted to your brand unless they feel that you are speaking to them directly. When you are talking to thousands of customers as a whole, how do you ensure that each of them feels like your marketing strategy is directed specifically at them? Chatbots can go a long way in helping you achieve this. When a registered user opens your site, chatbots welcome them by name, in a very friendly manner. Even though users know they’re not real people, the human tone most chatbots have can still make the experience feel a lot more personal. Chatbots can also keep a track of each customer’s previous search history and purchases, which help them, offer product suggestions that are tailor-made for each user.

Ixibaba is a chatbot developed by the travel website Ixigo to act as a personal travel agent to their customers. Ixibaba answers all of their queries, help them find flights, book hotels and discover restaurants near where they are staying. Ixibaba can also keep track of all the places customers have travelled to, helping it customize suggestions for each user.
ixiba bots

Chatbots are quickly emerging as one of the top digital marketing trends of 2017. Which one of these are you going to try for your brand? Let us know by leaving a comment.

How digital marketing will transform real estate industry in 2018

Over the last few years, digital marketing has played a key role in the advertising and branding of an organization.  Apart from uplifting the brand image, going digital also helps in reaching the target audience which, in turn, aids in generating leads and promoting sales.

One such industry that has tried, tested and achieved significant business growth with digital marketing is Real Estate and there is more to come in 2018. The last decade has witnessed a lot of real estate activity in the online space. A lot of property buyers and sellers do vigorous research online before they ultimately make the purchase or sell the property offline. Hence, making sure you have a strong online presence is of utmost importance to make your brand name stand out in the real estate industry.

So, what makes digital marketing such a vital tool for developers and home seekers alike and how is it going to progress going forward? To find out, let’s take a flashback to how it all began.

Real Estate and the Internet of Things 

A couple of decades ago, properties were considered a luxury investment. Only the richest of rich could afford the exorbitant prices stamped on the various housing projects. Even the process of purchasing a property was a long and tedious one. Home seekers had to collect and sign an endless flow of documents while also searching for a broker who could strike them a good deal for the desired property.

The Internet of Things has drastically changed the way buyers make purchase decisions. It is now a known fact that online reputation management can make or break your brand. Simple online searches take buyers to their desired property while documentation has become quick and paperless. Access to a multitude of properties has opened the doors for buyers with any financial background to have no hesitation while going for a purchase.

Brokers haven’t lost their place entirely; they have been able to tap into the power of the digital space and give home seekers a more refined and transparent property searching option. The increase in consumer mobile traffic has prompted brokers to bank on app marketing. Few of the trending apps are listed below:

Plabro: Trending in Delhi, this app has a back-end algorithm that shows a user’s preferences and provides property updates based on those preferences. It also shows analytical data on real estate trends.

Smart Agent Connect: Like Facebook for Realtors, this app lets realtors create business circles and take part in real estate deals over a short, quicker timeframe. It also lets realtors create custom websites and provide functions for complete Customer Relationship Management.

While a complete shift from traditional marketing to digital marketing is not going to happen anytime soon, real estate developers have notably increased their digital marketing budget over the past year. In 2015, statistics showed a 25 percent increase in marketing spends across the Real Estate industry, with an estimate of over 600 crore spent on digital marketing alone. One of the factors that influenced the budget increase is consumer behaviour, and with new improved numbers showing up for the forthcoming year, that scale in marketing budget will only go up.

Digital Media Facts & Stats (December 2016)

  • 462 million Internet users
  • 200 million active social media users (over 60% college are college students)
  • 3% of Indians accessed the Internet via mobile phone
  • The digital marketplace has grown by 33% between 2010 and 2015
  • 77% of online users buy products exclusively on social media
  • 50% of shoppers buy online based on social media influence
  • 74% of buyers rely on influence for making purchase decisions
  • The sale of physical goods through the digital space amounted to 16.8 billion dollars in revenue

These astounding statistics show just how powerful the Internet of Things has become and it also holds true for developers who seek the digital space for marketing their products.

Digital Marketing for Real Estate Stats (July 2016)

  • 14% of home buyers search for tips on how to purchase homes more effectively
  • 42% of home buyers have used the Internet as their first search medium
  • 82% of home buyers trust online agents as good information sources
  • 92% home buyers have searched for homes the Internet

The benefits of digital marketing

Marketing techniques are open to evolve and get better over time. Additionally, if you are an ardent user of the digital space for marketing your products, you know it comes with numerous benefits. Apart from the urban space, digital marketing is evolving in tier 2 and tier 3 cities of India as well. Real estate developers are yet to realise these benefits and are only scratching the surface when it comes to taking full advantage of what digital marketing has to offer. Here’s where digital marketing gives real estate developers an edge, with a multitude of digital marketing trends to expect in 2017.

  • Cost-efficient: Needless to say, there is a lot of money that goes into a real estate project. Digital marketing offers free publicity at comparatively lower pricing to that of traditional marketing, so it’s no surprise that marketers in the Real Estate industry are taking full advantage of the cost efficiency.
  • Increased exposure: Considering the numerous housing projects that vary in size, location and cost, having a digital marketing strategy lets you expand your overall reach and even customise that reach towards a selected target market.
  • Performance Analysis: Digital marketing offers numerous ways to keep track of an advertisement’s performance in the competitive marketplace, making it easier for real estate developers to understand what marketing technique works best for their products.
  • Creative licence: Be it an apartment, independent house, villa or plot of land, there are numerous ways for developers to showcase their products in the online marketplace.
  • Brand building: To succeed in the vast industry that is Real Estate, developers need a strong and reputable presence. Having online presence is considered the next best brand building technique.

Marketing techniques that work wonders

For any company which is hoping to succeed in the digital space, there are three goals every digital marketer must try and achieve:

  1. Building the brand
  2. Acquiring customers
  3. Customer engagement

Let’s look at some digital marketing practices (in the Real Estate Industry) that will help achieve the above-mentioned goals.

1. Building the brand

Creating an online presence is the first, most important step, and serves as a backbone for all future digital marketing activities. To establish a powerful online presence, Real Estate developers need to focus on creating three things.

Creating a Website

For Real Estate, a website can serve two purposes: a virtual office that showcases the builder’s latest projects or a virtual marketplace for home seekers to explore purchasing options. To make either one or both of these purposes work well, there are numerous tools and optimisation techniques that need to be implemented.

Even the design of the website matters as it can make a difference to user experience and one such design that has been making waves amongst the real estate websites is a Flat Design. Flat website designs are categorised by their simple, elegant and square’ish’ look; first noticed in the Windows 8 Tile User Interface. With minimalistic animations and loads of white space, the Flat website design has proven to be effective in page speed loading times, readability, mobile optimisation and ease of navigation.

While a good website design is pleasing to the eyes, it only scratches the surface of what matters especially in the Real Estate sector. A stellar design needs to be accompanied with great content to create an impact. Writing good content that effectively communicates a Real Estate brand’s message and intrigues the user to go ahead for a purchase is vital. Presenting your target audience with engaging content is a sure-shot way to grab their attention and generate leads.

Real Estate is a very broad topic, so to fit everything into a single website, other strategies can be utilised to showcase everything a Real Estate developer has to offer.lancor website

  • Multiple Web pages: Aside from having a homepage that gives a gist of the Real Estate builder’s brand, having multiple web pages that provide more information on the brand and interlink with one another through clever content navigation is essential. More pages ultimately result in users spending more time on the website, which directly affects the website’s rank on search engines.
  • Landing Pages: Landing pages act as mini e-commerce portals that explain in detail about a particular brand’s upcoming, on-going or released Real Estate project. Landing pages that are interactive or those that have video presentations have proven to yield 403% more inquiries than regular pages.

CG landing page

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

  • SEO is the glue that holds an entire digital marketing campaign together. As a matter of fact, digital marketers for Real Estate must have an SEO planner right at the beginning of their marketing strategy. From SEO plugins to various link building techniques, the driving force of good SEO, especially for Real Estate, is keyword research.
  • Statistics show that 80% of home buyers search for properties online which means having a list of search keywords incorporated into a content marketing strategy will pay off well. Potential customers will most likely be presented with search results about a property that has those keywords. Additionally, real estate companies can also leverage local SEO and Google maps to promote their business.

Creating a Blog

When people need help or are looking for something, they do one of two things – seek out a person or a place or browse the internet. Blogging has come a long way from being a casual online tool for storytelling to an essential element of a digital marketing strategy.

Blogs are a long, short or creative source of information and if there is one thing Google loves, it is loads of valuable information. Research shows that websites with blogs have 434% more indexed pages. Google recognises and ranks these websites easily due to the information provided, ultimately leading to that site showing up on the first page of search results.

Considering how broad a topic Real Estate is, builders must take advantage of the power of blogging and focus on sharing information to potential home buyers. Blogs that give detailed information on upcoming properties, tips on home buying and guides on investment options are just some of the many topics a Real Estate blog can include.

Having a strong social media presence

The platform of Social Media offers brands a unique way to get more personal with their audience, and it is no different in the case of Real Estate.

There are numerous platforms for Social Media Marketing available today and some of the most useful ones for Real Estate developers include:

  • Facebook: India has the world’s largest number of Facebook users (195v million and counting), so there is a clear and open platform for Real Estate developers to take advantage of the numerous advertising techniques Facebook has to offer.
  • YouTube: Videos are, without a doubt, the most watched medium on the planet. Real Estate developers can use optimised YouTube videos to add a layer of instructiveness to their promotional campaigns.  
  • Twitter: This micro-blogging giant has proven to be a rather useful marketing tool in the recent years. Twitter serves as a great platform for Real Estate developers to invite credible 3rd party sources to influence purchase decisions. For more insight on this, make sure you check out our extensive Twitter marketing guide for businesses in India.
  • LinkedIn: LinkedIn is the go-to medium for anyone looking to expand their business to business portfolio. Real Estate developers can connect to 3rd party realtors, architects, interior designers, house maintenance providers and so on.

2. Acquiring Customers

Having an online presence won’t be fruitful if your potential customers are not aware of that presence. Real Estate developers depend heavily on lead generation, and digital marketing offers the quickest, easiest and most ROI friendly lead generation method. Here are some of the ways Real Estate developers can acquire customers via digital media.

Advertising

Advertising online is one of the best ways to ensure you are reaching your potential target Group. If done right, it can be the best lead generation tool for real estate developers. Be it Facebook or Google or even other platforms such as Bing and Yahoo, using lead generation, website conversion ads or even interactive ads to engage with your target audience and collect leads.

Facebook Ads

As of July 2017, there are 241 million active users in India on Facebook. This is a primary reason why advertising on Facebook is something every builder needs to try. From website conversion ads to lead ads and carousel ads, builders should try a combination of videos and images to drive enquiries and site visits.  Facebook also has detailed targeting by demographics, age and behaviour. Additionally, you can also target your website visitors and those you have engaged with your post so that the ad is displayed to a more specific and niche crowd making the probability of selling the property even higher than before.

Ads in regional languages have started rolling out, and marketers have begun incorporating this concept into their marketing strategies to reach out to their target audience. When a potential home buyer reads an ad in his regional language, he develops a bond of trust and comfort with the seller and is more likely to make a purchase, or at least recommend that product to a friend.

Regional ads

With Facebook’s Brand Reach and Frequency campaigns, brands can even get assured visibility and reach, similar to what a front-page newspaper ad gives.

Google Ads

Google AdWords is a paid digital marketing strategy that is run on the Google search engine. Adwords smart display campaigns run strongly through a set of rules and guidelines and work best when incorporated into SEO tools and strategies.

Let’s say a home seeker is typing “flats in OMR” in the search box; if the digital marketer has incorporated the keywords “flats in OMR” along with some other relevant search queries, Google will pick up that ad and display it in the search results. The placement of the ad depends entirely on the budget set for the campaign. You can also optimise your AdWords campaign for profound results.

Google’s algorithms are ever changing and evolving to be more consumer-friendly, and 2017 has some cool new digital marketing trends that every marketer must keep close tabs on.

Drip email marketing

Drip emails are automated emails that are sent out based on a predefined time or user actions. Real Estate developers can target and constantly stay in touch with a group of people based on certain criteria retrieved from a strong email marketing database. Let’s say that a customer has visited a property website and shown interest by subscribing to property newsletters. Digital marketers can use the information provided by the customer to send emails about the development and completion of the property and news on various other related properties.

Drip emails are a powerful lead nurturer, with statistics showing a 119% increase click-through rate via trustworthy emails.

Influencer marketing

Influencer marketing is the Internet’s word-of-mouth marketing method and can prove very effective to generate leads for Real Estate Developers. Just like word-of-mouth, influencer marketing uses popular bloggers and other professionals in the Real Estate industry to promote a particular property. Influencer marketing channels include both blogs and social media channels, so Real estate developers must carefully choose the appropriate kind of influencer to market their properties.      

Influencer.in provides a one-stop platform for Real Estate developers to search and connect with the best influencers in the country; they can choose from either working on long campaigns with a selected influencer or contacting multiple micro-influencers over various social media platforms to spread the word.

3. Customer Engagement

The age-old marketing rule of getting new customers while retaining existing customers applies in the digital space as well. Of course, the most popular tool for customer engagement today is social media, and Facebook ranks high up on the list, especially for the Real Estate industry. There are a plethora of social media trends benefiting the real estate industry. Here are some interesting ways developers can utilise Facebook and YouTube for customer engagement.

Facebook engagement

  • Post real estate investment advice albeit with a funny picture
  • Post product comparison images and let the followers vote
  • Post interesting facts about the locality where the property is being developed
  • Post about celebrity or high-profile activity that is happening in the locality where the property is being developed
  • Post about festivals and celebratory occasions while adding a twist that relates to a property
  • Share information about daily real estate activities

YouTube engagement

  • Post videos on property interiors
  • DIY practical tips on home improvement
  • Property reviews
  • Live feed of upcoming events that relate to the property
  • Virtual reality property experience

Case Study: Digital Marketing for a leading real estate developer in Chennai

One of our esteemed clients is a Chennai based Real Estate enterprise which laid its foundations in 2004. Known for providing niche residential segments like luxury villas and high-rise apartments, the company has since produced 68 projects, selling to over 4000 happy residents.

Our client wanted to scale up its digital presence through powerful digital marketing, focusing on five primary goals.

An intense digital marketing campaign followed, running on platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn and Google search, resulting in an impressive turnaround that showed:

  • Over 500 Crores in sales from digital enquiries
  • 10x increase in lead generation
  • Cost per lead reduction by 30%
  • Organic Traffic increase by 3x
  • 4x increase in leads from organic traffic
  • Fan base on Facebook has grown to an engaged community of over 1,40,000 fans

Real estate is the most reliable and secure long-term investment you can make, and the ability to purchase a home will only get easier with newer technologies coming into the digital space, which is capable of giving you a real-time experience of any property right through a screen.

 

Vikas Chawla featured in Times of India

There is no doubt that digital technology has engulfed our world with a blanket of convenience. There is an app in our phones for literally every day-to-day activity, from booking a cab to ordering pizza. However, the lack of storage space and increased consumption of mobile data and time has led to stagnation in the number of app-users worldwide.

To address this issue, websites are now being re-designed with app-like behaviour. Frequent visits to these websites will lead to a pop-up in your phone prompting you to add a direct shortcut to the website in your main menu. The progressive functions of these app-like websites have led to the emergence of Progressive Web Apps (PWAs). This new technology has taken the digital world by storm and is here to stay. Social Beat is one of the few digital marketing agencies who has incorporated this technology in our website. Following is an article from Times of India in which Vikas Chawla, our co-founder, has given us a closer insight into the benefits of Progressive Web Apps and their impact on the consumers.

Vikas Chawla featured in TOI

Vikas part of the top 100 Digital Marketers in India

We, at Social Beat, are proud to announce that our co-founder, Vikas Chawla, has been listed as part of the prestigious Pluralsight Digi100 List powered by Paul Writer. The objective of this list is to recognize the top 100 Digital Marketers in India and it’s an honour to be enlisted in it. Last year, Vikas was also awarded As One of The Most Influential Digital Marketing Leaders in India.

The list was unveiled during the Futurist Business Conclave on August 18, 2017, at the Leela Ambience, Gurgaon. Apart from revealing the reputed list, the event also featured the master class – The Futurist Marketer – hosted by the CEO of Paul Writer, Jessie Paul. The day-long event was concluded with the revelation of the CX100 and Content 100 lists, along with a keynote delivered by Jaspreet Bindra, Vice President, Digital Transformation, Mahindra and Malcolm Frank, EVP, CSO and CMO at Cognizant and Co-Author of What to Do When Machines Do Everything.

For a closer insight into the listing, please visit the Pluralsight Digi100 List Powered by Paul Writer and get inspired!

Vikas part of the top 100 Digital Marketers in India

Top 21 Digital Marketing Courses in India

With the global internet population at over 3.74 billion and growing at a steady rate, increasing number of customers now make their purchase decisions online and buy online. Businesses the world over have begun to make digital marketing an integral part of their overall marketing strategy and spends. This has led to a massive growth in the digital media marketing services industry which, in turn, has spawned a new demand for trained professionals with knowledge and experience in the field.

With the industry, especially in India, showing an enormous projected growth potential and an expected paucity of trained professionals, many students, graduates and young professionals are looking to get on the digital marketing bandwagon. This has created a need for courses in Digital Marketing to provide the requisite knowledge and training to excel in the field. There are tons of books written on Digital Marketing as well.

To cater to the growing need for these courses, a number of companies and organizations have started various courses on Digital marketing. Digital marketing is a broad field and comprises various disciplines including Display advertising, Search Engine Marketing(SEM) and Search Engine Optimization(SEO), Social Media marketing(SMM), Email Marketing, Mobile Marketing and Affiliate Marketing. Each of these is a field in itself and there are field-specific courses being offered as well. Below is a guide on some of the best institutes that you could choose from.Since this is an extensive article we’ve split it into sections to make it easier for you to navigate and read through.

  1. Criteria for evaluating digital marketing courses
  2. Online Digital Marketing Courses in India
  3.  Online Vs Classroom courses 
  4. classroom and Offline Courses 
  5. Executive Programs on Digital Marketing
  6. Global Online Digital Marketing Courses

Short Video Guide on how to select the right digital marketing course in India:

Criteria you should use for evaluating social media & digital marketing courses

Before opting for a digital marketing course online or offline, here are some pointers to evaluate the desired institute or course structure.

  • Certification: Certification is no substitute for skills learned and hands-on industry experience but, nevertheless, can add to the CV of a fresher making an entry into the field or for a professional looking to make a career switch. Opt for certification courses recognized by various educational bodies and corporates.
  • Course Curriculum & Faculty Expertise: Gauge the Institute or the course offered based on the curriculum, faculty expertise, training modules and relevance to the current industry trends & practices.
  • Reviews and recommendations: Check for reviews and recommendations from industry experts & former students through online education portals or discussion forums. Reach out to alumni on LinkedIn/Twitter for their direct feedback, where possible.
  • Placements: Explore the institute’s placement opportunities or institutional tie-ups for live projects & hands-on experience on acquired digital marketing skills.

Here are some of the popular websites/companies/institutes offering Digital Marketing courses (in no particular order) which will save you a considerable amount of time in research if you’re looking for one for yourself. Please do also read our post on top digital marketing blogs in India as these blogs can help you get started on the learning path.

Online Digital Marketing Courses in India

1. Manipal ProLearn

Manipal Global Education Services is a reputed organisation that offers online and classroom based courses on digital marketing. Their online certification program spanning 30 hours of learning covers various aspects of digital marketing such as SEO, SEM, ORM and Analytics. Those interested in learning Google AdWords and advanced online marketing techniques can opt for their Digital Marketing Professional Program – a joint certification by Manipal ProLearn and Google India, that comprises of e-learning, classroom training and live projects.

2. TalentEdge

TalentEdge provides a Specialised Executive Programme in Digital Marketing from MICA, Ahmedabad, ideal for early beginners and working professionals. They claim to have reached over 8,00,000 registered learners who have benefitted from the live lectures, case studies and content structure designed by MICA faculty & industry experts. Amit Kishore from MICA is the current lead faculty and comes with over 18 Yrs. of experience in strategic media planning & media research in India, Middle East, and West Africa & South East Asia.

3. Digital Vidya

Digital Vidya is Asia’s leading Digital Marketing training company and the first to launch Social Media Marketing course series in India. Since 2009, they claim to have had participations from over 20,000 professionals and students, from over 10,000 organizations and institutions such as Philips, Google, eBay, Reliance, Star TV, Cisco, SAP, Naukri, Citibank, GM, Toyota, ITC, CNBC, NIIT, IIM Ahmedabad and IIM Lucknow, in more than 1,200 Digital Marketing training programs conducted by them.

Digital Vidya also offers Digital Marketing (CDMM), Mobile Marketing (CMMM) and Social Media Certification programs (CSMMP) in association with V-Skills, a Govt. of India initiative. They conduct a free weekly digital marketing orientation session for those who want to understand how digital marketing can help them grow their career or scale their business. They also have an active placement cell with digital marketing employment opportunities for their alumni.

Disclaimer: Rohit Uttamchandani of Social Beat is a Trainer for Digital Vidya

4. Simplilearn

Simplilearn is one of the leading platforms for online training and professional certification programs. They have around 30 courses in digital marketing that provide hands-on experience in various Digital marketing domains. Accredited by OMCP, these courses are aimed at helping working professionals & aspirants stay ahead of the digital curve with relevant skills.

5. Internet & Mobile Research Institute(IMRI)

Internet & Mobile Research Institute, headquartered in Bangalore is a full-service international digital media training centre. IMRI conducts a one-month Executive Programme course in SEO, PPC advertising, SMM & Web Analytics, a six-month Professional Program In Digital Marketing (EPDM) and a one-year Graduate Program for aspirants to jumpstart their digital marketing career.

6. AIMA

The All India Management Association (AIMA) along with Digital Vidya offers a joint Certification Programme in Digital Marketing and Analytics. The major digital marketing tools covered in this course are email marketing, SEO/SEM, pay per click, affiliate marketing, digital display, mobile marketing, online video and social media analytics. Spread over a period of three months, this online course is divided into 6 modules, costing Rs. 36,000 + service tax.

7. Digigyan

Digigyan, a digital marketing institute based out of Delhi NCR region, offers e-commerce and digital marketing courses and training to students, professionals, entrepreneurs and corporates. The online course is certified by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI).

How to choose between Online and Classroom courses for digital marketing

Online Courses are generally more convenient for most people, especially working professionals as they can be attended from the comfort of one’s home/office without having to travel to a training centre. The travel might even have to be to another city for those who live in cities where good classroom training courses are not conducted.

Also, with technology having improved, online instructor-led virtual classrooms are as good as actual classrooms, with webinar software allowing for both peers to peer interaction as well as student-teacher interaction. Webinar recordings are also available for those who miss out on sessions.

Classroom programs would only work best for you if you are the personality type that prefers learning in a classroom environment or if you’re not too comfortable with learning in a live webinar format.

Classroom & Offline Courses for digital marketing

For those of you who prefer classroom to online training, here is a list of institutes which conduct digital marketing classroom courses and workshops in various Indian cities:

8. NIIT

NIIT Imperia, in association with Digital Marketing Institute (DMI) Ireland, offers a Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing for graduates and working professionals at their centres in most major cities in the country. This course is accredited by Further Education and Training Awards Council (FETAC) of Ireland.

9. DMTI

Digital Marketing Training Institute conducts a Post Graduate Program in Digital Media Marketing in Mumbai. The course is a one-year, full-time program that focuses on the strategic and practical aspects of Digital Marketing. They have an active placements cell as well which helps course participants get jobs in the digital marketing space.

10. EduPristine

EduPristine is one of India’s leading training providers for international certifications in Finance, Accounting and Analytics. They also conduct digital marketing classroom courses in 11 Indian cities. The course covers 60 hours of digital marketing classroom training over 12 Sundays. They also have a 48-hour online course spread over 6 weekends. On completion of the course, the participants are awarded a Certificate of Excellence in collaboration with “Microsoft IT Academy Program”.

11. DSIM

The Delhi School of Internet Marketing conducts an all in one advanced digital marketing live classroom course for working professionals, business owners and job-seekers, at their training centres in Delhi and Bangalore. They conduct an online instructor-led course as well on weekends. However, they do not seem to offer any digital marketing certification for participants who complete the course.

12. Simply Digital

Simply Digital, started by a group of IIT-IIM alumni conducts digital marketing and big data courses at their centres in Delhi and Gurgaon. They also have a placement cell to help students get internships in digital start-ups & final placements at all levels across sectors.

13. Learning Catalyst

Learning Catalyst, based out of Mumbai, specializes in niche web/mobile/digital related programs directed towards a wide segment of individuals with marketing, design and tech backgrounds. They have centres in 7 Indian cities (Mumbai, Delhi, Pune, Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad) where they conduct courses of various durations on SEM, SEO, SMM and a 6-week integrated digital marketing program. They conduct an online course on Google hangouts as well.

14. Digital Nest

Digital Nest conducts an Advanced Digital Marketing Training Course in Hyderabad. The course includes 48 hours of classroom training with weekday/weekend classes. They also conduct workshops/seminars and webinars for corporate bodies and educational institutions.

15. Social Samosa

Social Samosa, one of the most popular social media news and information portals in India, conducts workshops and seminars on the basics of Social Media, Facebook and Twitter marketing in Mumbai. These one-day sessions can serve as a primer for those who want to gain a basic knowledge of the space.

Executive Programs & Management Development Programmes on Digital Marketing in India

Most of the courses listed above are best suited for students and working professionals. If you are someone in a fairly senior role who has more than 5 to 10 years of work experience under his/her belt, then it might be worthwhile considering doing an executive digital marketing course.

It’s surprising to see that not many business schools in India are offering executive or management development programs around digital marketing. The few that do exist have been showcased below and we have tried to find a mix of programs that focus on digital marketing, e-commerce and analytics. If you have attended any of these programs please do leave your feedback in the comments below.

16. Indian School of Business, Hyderabad

ISB Hyderabad has a 3-day executive program titled “Digital & Social Media Marketing Strategies” priced at Rs.1,00,000 + GST. It is specifically targeted for professionals and leaders in the marketing and strategy domain. The program aims to give an overview of digital and social media marketing and how to get ROI from the medium.

17. Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore

IIM Bangalore has a programme called “Digital Marketing for Business Growth” which they conduct three times in their academic year. The programme aims to give an overview of digital marketing with a focus on the different social media marketing channels, search engine marketing (both search advertising & search engine optimization) and digital analytics. So it aims to give an overview of each of the key elements that can enable brands to get better engagement, leads and conversions. It also touches upon analytics and what metrics can be used to measure the performance of the digital campaigns.

18. Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow

IIM Lucknow does seem to have a programme on Digital Marketing by renowned Professor Moutusy Maity. She has done extensive research in e-commerce, m-commerce and CRM so the quality of the programme is likely to be very high. She has worked in the Industry (at Nielsen) and handled clients like PepsiCo and Eveready Batteries so she would definitely bring a practical experience to the table. We are yet to receive more details on the programme from them so we shall update it here shortly.

19. Great Lakes Institute of Management

Great Lakes has a very interesting Post Graduate Program in Business Analytics and Business Intelligence for working executives which has a large focus on digital analytics. It is a blended program with classroom & online sessions. It also gives exposure to tools like SAS, R, Tableau. The entire programme is designed by experts in the Industry and the students have to complete a project under the mentorship of industry leaders. It is offered in Chennai, Bangalore, Pune & Gurgaon at the moment.

Global Online Digital Marketing Courses

20. HootSuite Social Media Certification

Hootsuite, one of the most popular tools for social media scheduling and monitoring offers a program called HootSuite Podium covering the fundamentals of social media marketing, with six free online courses. They also offer a paid certification exam, after passing which participants are listed in HootSuite’s public directory of social media professionals.

21. Hubspot Academy

Hubspot Academy offers a free Inbound Marketing Course & Certification marketers, entrepreneurs and students. They also conduct classroom training but only in the United States.

Apart from the courses listed above; there are various courses available on online learning sites including Google Digital Unlocked, Udemy, Udacity, Coursera and Gyaanexchange. If you are a self-learner keen on understanding the digital marketing space, there are various digital marketing blogs, articles, books and real time case studies available online. You can also join relevant LinkedIn groups to participate in discussions & connect with industry experts.

All said Digital marketing is a field where just taking courses or following the industry trends alone will not make one an expert. Maximum learning can only be gleaned from actual hands-on, on-the-job experience. Hence, the success of these courses will eventually depend on the quality of digital professionals they send into the industry and how well they execute the acquired knowledge & digital skill sets.

If you are looking out for digital marketing or social media career opportunities in Chennai, Bengaluru or Mumbai then please visit our Career Opportunities page.

Have you taken up any of these courses? Please share your experiences with us in the comments!

How to get ROI from digital marketing- Digital Chai Pe Charcha, Mumbai

Banking on a series of successful editions of Digital Chai Pe Charcha in Chennai and Bangalore, we conducted the first edition of Digital Chai Pe Charcha in Mumbai. We had close to 30 participants comprising of entrepreneurs and marketers from across industries. The topic of discussion was getting ROI from Digital Marketing.

Digital Chai Pe Charcha, Mumbai

A quick recap from the session

  • Digital Marketing Comprises of various activities like Landing Page Creation, Search Engine & Content Marketing, Social Media Marketing, Email Marketing, Display Advertising and Influencer Marketing.
  • Digital media can be segregated into 3 types: Owned Media, Paid Media and Earned Media.
  • While building digital assets, it is important to understand that the key is to provide a great user experience across platforms. A smooth User experience helps in driving conversions.
  • A Landing Page is essential for lead generation and helps in faster conversions.
  • According to a research done by Buzzsumo and Moz and Video content gets shared the most across platforms followed by Lists, how to posts and Infographics. While creating content, it is extremely important to focus on the relevance of content to the viewers. The content dynamics have been changing rapidly. From images to videos to gifs to VR, there is a wide range of options to experiment with, to create the right communication piece for your audience. Great content is generally considered as content that provides solutions to the viewer’s problems. Thus, research reports, E-books and guides are some more examples of content that can be created to strike a chord with the audience.
  • Non-branded content helps in gaining engagement. Create content that focuses on the viewer and not essentially on the brand.
  • Vernacular marketing and multilingual content is rapidly gaining importance. Vernacular content helps to create a local connection with the audience.
  • Measuring your digital marketing results is essential as it helps to better strategize your digital marketing efforts. There are several tools available to analyze and measure your results.

Below is the presentation that was discussed during the session which will provide you with more information on the above points:

Top 13 Marketing Events in Mumbai

Are you looking out for some really interesting, inspirational and power packed events? Attend some of the biggest marketing and digital marketing events in Mumbai that not just inspire but also give you an opportunity to network with the best marketers in the country. It’s an opportunity to listen to the finest in the advertising and marketing field – a forum that stimulates conversations and ideas around design, marketing, digital and more.

Here’s a quick glance into our compilation of top marketing events in Mumbai.

DMAI Annual Conference & Awards

DMAi Annual Conference & Awards is one of Asia’s biggest marketing transformational events. Organized by Social Samosa that promotes the power of collaborative thinking to transform marketing members into change leaders through evolved business strategies. It intends to go beyond Digital Transformation, and unravels breakthrough technologies to help marketers re-imagine the business of tomorrow. This event was first conducted in 1992. This event felicitates individuals for their noteworthy contribution in Data Driven Digital Marketing & Advertising.

Few Highlights of DMAi Awards 2016 (held in Feb)

  1. A week long festival with Interactive sessions simultaneously across 3 cities
    1. New Delhi: Radisson Blu Plaza
    2. Bangalore: Le Meridien
    3. Mumbai:  The Leela
  2. Began on February 4th in Delhi with a closing conference and gala awards night on February 10 in Mumbai
  3. Insightful and inspirational talks by leading Global & Indian marketing stalwarts
  4. Masterclass by influencer Sean Gardner in Mumbai
  5. A CMO Choice – Jury Meet in Mumbai

IDMA – Indian Digital Media Awards

Exchange4media organizes the Indian Digital Media Awards since 2010. It has always encouraged contributors in the 360-degree digital media space to keep getting better with the transformations taking place in the industry year on year. For this, it recognizes their talents, appreciates and celebrates them through these awards. It has showcased the work of many contemporary digital professionals and rewarded them for their beautifully executed digital blogs and viral campaigns. This event in itself is a huge networking opportunity for every business professional to connect and grow.

Brand Owners’ Summit – Mumbai

The Brand Owners’ Summit is a unique event, which attempts to capture the ‘Stories of Brands Made for India’. It focuses on brands created for domestic markets by local Indian companies and entrepreneurs.

This Summit was organized across six cities in the last 5 years: Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Kolkata, Mumbai and New Delhi. It staged an amazing array of brands such as Adani, Amul, Carat Lane, Centuryply, Faasos, Future Group, HDFC Life, Housing.com, ITC, Kotak Mahindra, Rasna, Reliance, Shaadi.com, Star India, TI Cycles, TVS, Urban Ladder, Yatra, Xolo, Zydus Cadila, and more.

Mobile & Digital Marketing Summit

This event is organized by World Marketing Congress and typically lays emphasis on developments in the areas of Mobile Marketing along with other digital channels. This is a great event, in case you are looking to network with high profile industry players such as CEOs / MDs, CMOs, Media Professionals, Marketing  and Advertising Managers, top Brand Managers and Corporate Communication Managers. This year it is scheduled to take place on 27th Nov 2017. The main agenda of the conference will feature discussion panels and poster presentations on Ways to maximize the Mobile Platform and Consumer Engagement

Social Beat Facebook Masterclass & Digital Chai Pe Charcha

Social Beat, a digital marketing firm present in 3 cities, Chennai, Bangalore and Mumbai conducts free events across these 3 cities. They mainly do 2 events:

  1. The Digital Marketing Masterclass: The 2nd edition  was conducted in Mumbai on 21st April 2017 in partnership with Facebook India. With a packed audience, the event saw an insightful evening on how to approach digital marketing to build a brand and to acquire quality sales or leads.  It covered key points such as  Mobile First Marketing, Instagram Marketing, Art of Audience Targeting on Facebook and backed it up with a few case studies. An extremely informative and engaging event that should see a place at the top of your consideration
  2. Digital Chai Pe Charcha: Social Beat conducts a series of free workshops for startups called Digital Chai Pe Charcha, which allows first-time digital marketers to get a better sense of how to get ROI from their marketing efforts. After successful editions in Bengaluru and Chennai, the first one took place in Mumbai in July 2017. This event’s key topic of Charcha was on ways of getting ROI from Digital Marketing and the Charcha went on between entrepreneurs and marketers from across industries which were the major makeup of the audience. Newer and first of its kind strategies were unveiled along with some really interesting takeaways.

Click Asia Summit

Click Asia Summit is Asia’s largest Digital Marketing Summit, which focusses on the digital transformation of business. This Summit follows a hybrid model that presents the speaker sessions and panel discussion together and helps dive deeper into the topic of discussion. Click Asia Summit happens for 2 days in the month of April and speaker sessions usually run for an hour, which allows up to three speakers to deliver a twenty-minute talk in TED-style, followed by an open discussion with the audience. Time = money = learning is the motto of this event. They have 50+ global organization partners, 60+ speakers, 400+global delegates, 50+ media partners across 20+ countries under their umbrella which offers a great deal of opportunity to network with top CXOs, leading marketers in the industry, agency heads, brand managers and almost everyone who are passionate about digital marketing.

Few highlights of Click Asia Summit 2016:

  • Ayal Steiner, MD of OutBrain for Asia Pacific gave an insight into how content marketing gives a complete picture of your brand story line
  • Aryan Bonnici, MD of Hubspot discussed the content marketing trends of 2016.
  • Robert Scoble gave digital food for thought on Entrepreneur in residence.

Pitch CMO Summit

Exchange4Media group boasts of another event that it hosts, the Pitch CMO Summit. It is considered to be their flagship event which gathers some of the greatest marketing minds to discuss the latest, complex and challenging marketing trends in the global market scenario.  Every year, the event is theme-based. The theme for 2017 was “THE AGE OF TRUTH AND TRANSPARENCY- Brand Integrity through Authenticity of Brand Communication”.

This year the event took place on 10th March 2017 at the Grand Hyatt and covered discussions on the challenges posed for marketers on how they should market their products or services in an age of truth and transparency; given the power of social media and word of mouth in the digital age.

The Marketing Conclave

This is a grand event in Mumbai organized by the IAMAI (Internet and Mobile Association of India).  It is an endeavor towards establishing a great comprehension of the modern methods and mechanics of marketing.

Key highlights:

Major Speakers were MDs & CEOs of leading companies such as Group M and Pepsico, top marketing managers of Times Internet, Starbucks, HDFC bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, eBay and Renault amongst others. There were Panelists to take the conversations to another level.  The sessions were followed by networking breaks at regular intervals.

Topics of discussion revolved around Marketing in new age Digital India and around the Globe that included:

  1. The new age brand’s marketing techniques that go beyond analysis in numbers
  2. Programmatic marketing
  3. Marketing on Mobiles
  4. Video Marketing as a part of Social Media Marketing
  5. Performance Marketing

Adobe Symposium

Adobe symposium is one of the biggest Digital Marketing events in Mumbai. This event invites thought leaders in the field of digital marketing to redefine your experiences with Adobe partners. As their marketing promos claim – ‘Take it to another level, soar new heights like never before and extend your digital experience with courses straight from the Adobe Digital Learning Services’. Apart from these, there are several other reasons to attend this conference, including for networking goals. This is the most sought after experience for most digital professionals in today’s utmost competitive era and has been rightly defined as the event “Where digital marketing meets extraordinary experiences.”  Every marketer looks forward to make the most valuable connections with their digital marketing pioneers and peers and if luck may have it, then with the digital marketing veterans and Adobe leaders too.

The last Adobe Symposium was on 4th May 2017 at Grand Hyatt, Mumbai and the next is scheduled to take place in 2018. So stay tuned!

Martech Roundtable

Marketing Automation – A solution for countless marketers to customize customer experiences through relevance and personalization. IAMAI believes this is a key to be a successful marketing leader and is the most trending topic of current times. It, therefore, hosts this roundtable event which combines technology with marketing for brands to deliver the most seamless customer experience.

Key highlights

CMOs of leading companies such as Sony Pictures, HDFC life, Netcore Solutions, Angel Broking, Shaadi.com amongst others.

Topics of Discussion:

  1. ChatBots – The Buzzword for the next wave of delivering customer experiences
  2. Audience Targeting for Lead Generation
  3. Make sense of Data for Analytical purposes
  4. Scalability of Personalization of Customer Experience

DigiMarcon (Digital Marketing Conference)

It is The Largest Digital Marketing Event in India.  This conference generally takes place in October. This year it is scheduled to be held on October 18th and 19th, 2017 online. It is a Live Conference held as a response to the massive demand  and the huge response it receives. Set your goals straight whether they are primarily aiming to reinforce customer loyalty, improve lead generation, increase sales, or even drive stronger consumer engagement, DIGIMARCON INDIA 2017’s agenda will enhance all your marketing efforts  through perceptions of innovators and influential people. Pull up your sleeves for the sessions will enlighten you through remarkable insights through powerful talks on ways to build traffic, expand your brand awareness, improve customer service and finally know about today’s latest digital tools. A must attend event that impresses you within 20 minutes, you can afford to miss only to regret later.

Mobile marketing summit

An event similar to the Mobile and Digital Marketing Summit yet very different. This one is organized by IAMAI unlike the former, which is organized by the World Marketing Congress. It focuses on the nuances of marketing that work well and are thought to work better in the future on Mobile phones through innovative thinking, improvised systems, and modified technology. The last event was held on 24th September 2014 at the Hyatt Regency in Mumbai.

Indian Content Marketing Award & Summit

A niche awards night started by exchange4media in 2016, when it announced its first edition on Aug 31, 2016 at the Hard Rock Cafe, Worli, Mumbai.  This event has tried to showcase how content is a pre-requisite for marketers to present their brands to consumers and creatively drive engagement levels. Indian Content Marketing Awards is essentially hosted to recognize and acknowledge the talent, expertise and the hard work of every content developer while cracking breakthrough ideas & concepts to create exceptional brand stories.

This event is also clubbed with a Content JAM conference, which brings content marketing experts from India and abroad to put forth their ideologies and perceptions on the ways in which content consumption is increasing and is imperative in shaping the marketing ecosystem. Primary topics of discussion & debate in the JAM Conference revolve around Content Creation, Curation, Distribution & Measurement. The Jury appointed for these awards comprises of only the top CMOs of industry-leading companies such as Aditya Birla Health Insurance, Girnarsoft (Cardekho, Gaadi.Com, Zigwheels), Abbott Healthcare Pvt. Ltd, etc. The 2nd edition of these awards is coming soon in 2017.

If you are based in Bengaluru, you may find it interesting to read our blog on Top marketing events in Bangalore.

Do feel free to comment below or reach out to us in case you feel any other event in Mumbai deserves to be a part of this list.

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