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Develop Your Marketing Strategy With an Agile Approach

It seems that ever since the term ‘agile marketing’ began to be bandied about a decade ago, debate has raged over whether it should or should not be adopted in favour of strategic marketing. But the two are not mutually exclusive. Modern marketing requires an agile approach aligned with a strategic overview. Agile and strategic marketing can and should work in harmony. And those marketing teams who have recognised this are reaping the rewards while others continue to debate.

What is agile marketing?

Agile marketing is a flexible approach to marketing that reflects the emergence of the digital transformation and change in customer expectations in recent years.

Its strength lies in collaboration and giving creative marketers freedom to experiment within a structured working environment. This is very much a team game – one that rejects silos but enhances possibilities and accountability.

Agile marketing teams work in short bursts known as ‘sprints’. Each sprint typically lasts between one week and one month with a focus on producing high volumes of output and assessing it as you go. 

Throughout the sprint, a meeting is held every morning lasting no more than 15 minutes. This is a quick summary of what each person did yesterday, what they plan to do today, and any obstacles that might affect the days’ work (e.g. a colleague is off sick, computers are down etc). Any issues are quickly addressed as a team with focus squarely on producing the volume of output that was set out at the beginning of the sprint.

This approach is very different from traditional strategy marketing that was a far longer process that only evaluated results after the event. 

At the time, this process was necessary and went something like this:

Step 1: Planning phase

  • Identify your business purpose
  • Decide what you want your marketing plan to achieve

Step 2: Analysis phase

  • Conduct market research
  • Define your place in the industry
  • Identify your target market
  • Analyse your competitors

Step 3: Development phase

  • Decide on your marketing strategy
  • Determine your marketing mix

Step 4: Implementation phase

  • Create your campaign
  • Launch it

Step 5: Analysis phase

  • Assess the results of your marketing campaign
  • Make notes
  • Implement what you have learned into future marketing efforts

Agile marketing differs from this approach in that it combines phases 3, 4 and 5. This is made possible by the digital transformation and the speed with which content can be created, launched and analysed.

Traditionally, marketing campaigns needed to be thoroughly planned before the implementation phase because leaflets, posters, TV and radio ads etc had to be budgeted for from the outset. Likewise, it was only after the event that the results could be seen and discussions about what had worked and what hadn’t could take place.

Contrast this with modern marketing methods that are highly targeted, heavily dependent on social media, and can be instantly analysed – and you begin to see why agile marketing is the future.

Agile marketing methods must be guided by the overarching strategy set out in phase 1 and 2, but it focuses on producing high volumes of content quickly, smelling what’s selling, and always ensuring the focus is on those tasks and iterations that have the greatest impact on results and ROI.

How to implement agile marketing effectively

Put simply, agile marketing favours responding to change over sticking rigidly to a plan. Naturally, the first iteration of an agile marketing plan will be closely aligned to what you would have expected to produce using traditional methods. The difference is that, with agile marketing, there is no need to achieve ‘perceived perfection’ before you launch your campaign.

This means you can get vast amounts of content out in the public domain quickly, find out what iterations of it work, which platforms are most successful, and where you might be able to improve. Future iterations could involve tweaking your content slightly, making wholesale changes or deciding that one particular angle was a terrible idea and should be consigned to the scrapheap. 

But failure is embraced. When one marketing creative is charged with spending a day producing a piece of work that ultimately fails to land, you have lost nothing and learnt something. As other members of the team are also engaged in producing volumes of output, the few attempts that fall by the wayside are negligible. Remember, this is about working together and achieving as a team. Everybody learns from what went wrong and so the collective is better informed than they were when the spring began.

This is not a process that will necessarily transform your marketing overnight, But in the long term you will create a marketing team with broad knowledge of how to approach each new sprint and each new product. But along the way, the flexible approach of agile marketing will ensure you are able to adapt to market changes and trends in a way that simply isn’t possible under an old-school strategy marketing process.

There are four broad features that define agile marketing:

Sprints:

The time you give your team to complete a specific project

Stand up meetings:

Daily meetings to discuss and track progress

Project board:

A central place for progress to be logged and to which all team members have access

Teamwork:

Adopting a collaborative approach in which everybody mucks in

The benefits of agile marketing

  • Teams can produce, test and optimise campaigns quickly
  • Different iterations can be tested and only the most successful developed
  • Make rapid data-driven decisions
  • Collaboration ensures all members are pulling in the same direction

Agile marketing as part of your overall marketing strategy

As previously stated, agile marketing does require an overall strategy. This modern approach doesn’t change the basic principle that you must know what you want your marketing plan to achieve in order to target it effectively and understand how successful it is.

The key for marketing managers is to ensure that every sprint, every stand up meeting, every progress tracking exercise and every member of the team is focused on the overriding strategy. Trying to implement agile marketing without a comprehensive marketing strategy will not work. It will be without direction and impossible to analyse. 

Agile marketing is not a replacement for strategy marketing. It allows marketing teams time and flexibility to try out new things. Instead of holding a meeting that involves 8 people sitting around a table for 3 hours discussing how to engage a new sector of your audience, ask 2 team members to each spend a day creating an innovative way to reach them. That’s 16 man hours rather than 24, you have your most creative individuals getting straight on with the job, and at the end of it you have real-time data that definitively shows which approach was most successful.

Your agile marketing efforts then feed into your overall marketing strategy which itself becomes agile but in a more pedestrian, considered way.

Examples of agile marketing

Agile marketing does not need to be ground-breaking. Sometimes, it is as simple as making small changes to your existing marketing efforts and analysing the results to establish whether those amendments have worked, or further iterations are required.

This could include:

  • Writing two blog posts per month tackling specific issues instead of spending hours labouring over a comprehensive e-book
  • Optimising the landing pages on your website to drive conversions rather than redesigning the whole thing
  • Maximising the opportunities presented by your best performing pages instead of creating a whole new campaign

At Lucdigi, we help companies across the world enhance their online presence through digital marketing. We adopt an agile approach within an agreed strategy to help our clients reach their target market and achieve their business goals. 

For more details and to discuss how we can help you implement an effective agile marketing strategy, get in touch today.

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Why Fintech Businesses Need a Digital Marketing Strategy

Fintech is booming as the financial services industry continues to go through a period of huge change. And as fintech grows, so does the demand for fintech marketing. But what does digital marketing look like for fintech and how does it differ from traditional marketing methods in financial services?

Recent years have seen customer expectations altered in almost every sector with digital services becoming the norm. This development has created fantastic opportunities for finance companies but has also led to a situation in which competition is arguably at its fiercest ever. Digital marketing provides an opportunity to stand out in a crowded market.

What is changing in fintech marketing?

Marketing financial services has always been blighted by one major factor – financial products are both complex and mundane. Consumers have typically chosen financial products on the basis of trust – and they always will do. But before you can develop trust, you need to get your target consumers’ attention.

The old ways no longer work if you want to generate interest, build a brand and attract loyal customers. We live in an age of instant gratification where pretty much anything and everything you want is available quickly, smoothly and at the touch of a button or tap of a screen. Fintech marketing companies must tap into this opportunity, building trust and getting noticed in the digital spaces their audience occupies.

New ways of reaching customers are offered by:

  • AI
  • Machine learning
  • Computer vision
  • Chatbots
  • Social media

And who knows what the next advancements in digital marketing will turn out to be?

But not everything about the future of fintech marketing is entirely new. There was a time when the ability to withdraw money from a cashpoint was seen as progress simply because people no longer needed to visit their branch. Then online payments replaced the need to write and post a cheque. In 2022, consumers want all the latest conveniences offered by digital banking – but there is also a curiosity about many aspects of the fintech industry. 

Cryptocurrency and challenger banks are flying high. But not without an element of scepticism. But as fintech success stories continue to circulate, there is an air of anticipation among consumers. They want to learn more, to find out for themselves if it really is as simple, accessible and profitable as they have heard. What they want is information. Fintech companies have millions of people out there who want to hear what they have to say. A captive audience who just want to know that the companies that are intriguing them and piquing their interest are credible and trustworthy.

You might say that the financial services sector has gone full circle and that relationship banking is once again in demand. But this is not the type of relationship banking that sees consumers wanting to visit a branch and speak to a stuffy man in a bowler hat. This is a digital relationship. One in which consumers demand access to the reliable information about the products they want at the time and in the place that is most convenient to them.

That place is online. And that’s why every fintech company needs a digital marketing strategy.

Creating an effective fintech digital marketing strategy

A good fintech digital marketing strategy will put you in front of your target audience, clearly define what differentiates you from the competition and show what you stand for. Modern consumers want to know a brands’ values and to understand the personality behind the persona. Modern marketing is about aligning your brand with your target audience and demonstrating that you ‘get’ them.

First and foremost, your digital marketing strategy has to be launched in the right places to speak to your intended audience. Traditional TV and radio advertisements that try to appeal to a mass audience are a dying breed. The digital transformation has presented marketers with an opportunity for highly targeted advertising that appears in users’ news feeds whenever they go online or puts compelling emails in their inbox that will tempt them in. 

So, let’s take a look at how to create a killer digital marketing strategy for your fintech business:

  1. Go mobile

Mobile devices are now the most popular way for people to go online. That means your digital marketing must be mobile friendly. And mobile-friendly means quick and easy to use. Remember, getting noticed is just the tip of the iceberg. Once you have a users’ attention, user experience and the customer journey are vital if you want to turn that interested browser into a paying customer.

The principles of digital marketing don’t change. This is a technical process of making sure your brand and products are accessible. But a word of warning – currently 52% of online searching is done using mobiles. This figure is set to rise as time goes on, but compromising the quality of your desktop browsing to focus solely on mobile devices could alienate you from almost half of internet users. It may be that your main target is Gen Z and millennials, in which case mobile-first might be your best bet. But don’t fall into the trap of going mobile-only.

  1. Gamification

Gamification is the process of taking gameplay principles and applying them to non-gameplay apps and sites. In marketing, gamification often takes the shape of:

  • Contests
  • Prizes and awards
  • Reward points for certain actions such as purchases or referrals
  • Online quizzes and puzzles that turn the mundane into something engaging that gets people motivated to act

This is a popular tactic in the run-up to a new product launch as it generates interest and encourages people to share content and compete with friends or other users.

  1. Affiliate and influencer marketing

Third party validation is a traditional principle of marketing. But these days, you don’t need to hire a celebrity – at least not an expensive A-lister. There are plenty of influencers with huge followings who charge huge sums of money to feature products and services in their content. However, conversion rates are low.

On the other hand, there are micro-influencers (those with 100 – 500,000 followers) and bloggers who will promote your product for a far lower fee and with much better conversion rates. 

Ok, we all know that influencers and affiliates are being paid to promote your product, but it’s in their interests to give their audience what it wants. An influencer or blogger who promotes things that don’t interest their audience will see numbers (and subsequently income) dwindle. So, find someone with a following that matches your target market and you have a foot in the digital door before you even get started.

  1. Community marketing

The digital world is all about belonging. Offer your target market what they want, give them places to connect with your brand and each other, and you begin to develop loyal customers. 

Some fintech customers have encouraged members of their community to help develop or name new products. Others offer live Q&A sessions and invite members to ask questions. In addition to getting people involved and making them feel part of a movement, this also helps show the personality behind the brand and build credibility in your niche.

If you choose to go down the community marketing route, you are positioning your business as a brand that values engagement. And that means making sure you are consistent across all platforms. You’ll need to be active on social media and be sure to engage with and respond to your community. Sometimes that might mean asking questions or creating polls, at other times you will need to produce shareable content, and there will also be times when it’s as simple as answering queries or liking posts from your followers to show them you are interested in their opinions.

  1. Content marketing

Quality is key here. If you write something, make it valuable. Pre-empt the questions your audience will ask and write blogs that give them the answers. Optimise your content for Google and follow all SEO techniques. Remember, SEO is an ongoing task so make sure you have plans in place to keep on top of it yourself or to hire a digital marketing agency to manage it for you.

Think about all the types of content available to you and what your target audience engages with. Videos are popular with users and are a great way to hold someone’s attention. But you need to grab them from the start. A video has approximately 3 seconds to hook someone in before they decide to scroll on. This is no time for lengthy introductions. Get to the point, grab the attention, then fill in the rest.

All content marketing must be customer-focused. Keep in mind that your customer (no matter how loyal they are) does not care about your product or service. They care about what it can do for them. Focus your digital marketing on the features and benefits of what you do and show people how it solves a problem or issue for them. This is marketing – you’re selling a lifestyle not a product.

Conclusion

The key to digital marketing for fintech is to define your target market and choose a cross-channel approach that engages your entire audience with a consistent message but in a way that is uniquely designed to speak to each segment. 

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to digital marketing. But don’t look at that fact as an obstacle. See it as an opportunity. Tailor your content to each section of your market, hone your digital strategy for maximum exposure and expect to see conversion rates rise.

At Lucdigi, we support fintech companies build their brand and create a digital presence that speaks directly to their audience

For more details and to discuss how we can help you stand out in an increasingly crowded marketplace, get in touch today.

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What You Need to Know About Marketing Localisation?

These days there is nothing to stop you expanding your brand globally if you see a market for it in other parts of the world. Websites are accessible from anywhere in the world, online payments mean there need be no delay in completing transactions, and the international shipping market is booming. But all too often, companies fail to seize that expansion opportunity simply because they don’t follow the principles of marketing localisation.

And they are missing out on a huge opportunity to take their brand global:

  • According to 49% of global marketers, marketing localisation increases ROI
  • Localised content received 6x more engagement
  • 86% of localised marketing campaigns outperform the English-only campaigns that were traditionally seen as the easiest route to global expansion

What is marketing localisation?

Marketing localisation is the process of adapting your digital marketing to make it relevant to other markets you want to get into. It is all about improving user experience and adapting your marketing materials in such a way that they feel organically created rather than obviously translated.

Sometimes this will involve wholesale changes to reflect the language and culture of your intended new audience, for example when translating your content from English to Indian. At other times, for example if adapting from UK English to US English, it may just require a few small changes to ensure the content remains culturally relevant and appropriate.

There may even be times when it makes sense to adapt your content for different regions of one country.

Translating your site using Google Translate

This may seem like the most straightforward way to localise your content, and Google Translate can certainly form part of the process. But we all know it is not always 100% accurate.

Google Translate takes no account of cultural nuances and will translate idioms and local phrases word for word in the same way it does the bulk of your content. Relying wholly on Google Translate will almost certainly lead to a situation where you have content that makes no sense to your new audience or worse, is insensitive or offensive.

It can be a good starting point, but human intervention is required to make the content truly relevant to your intended audience.

The importance of language in the process

There are several high-profile cases of companies who got it horribly wrong when translating their content:

  • KFCs ‘Finger Lickin’ Good’ slogan was presented to a Chinese audience as ‘Eat Your Fingers Off’
  • American Airlines ‘Fly in Leather’ tagline was translated into Mexican as ‘Fly Naked’
  • US beer manufacturer Coors translated ‘Turn in Loose’ into Spanish only to discover its new meaning was ‘Suffer from Diarrhoea’

Wherever you go in the world, language is full of nuances that often make sense only to natives. Italians use the phrase ‘In bocca al lupo’ to wish somebody good luck. The phrase translates literally as ‘In the mouth of the wolf’. It’s easy to see how this phrase could be confusing to natives of other countries if directly translated.

The English version of ‘In bocca al lupo’ is ‘Break a leg’. To anybody outside of the UK this may seem an odd way to wish somebody well and it could be disastrous if translated to another language.

But while phrases such as these have the potential to go so wrong when translated, they are the exact types of local dialect that marketers look for when trying to connect with an audience. Marketing copy is often full of local dialect, made up phrases that mean nothing outside of their original context (remember ‘Don’t just do it, B&Q it’) and puns that only work in their native language.

These are often the most important parts of the content as they establish the intended audience, define the brand and speak directly to the target market. These must be translated into something that is equally appealing to the new market – but rarely will a direct translation be the answer.

B2B marketing and localisation

B2B marketing is no longer the staid, transactional process it was once seen as. Globalisation coupled with the way people of all generations now accept digital marketing as the primary way to source any product or service, have catapulted B2B marketing into the digital transformation.

Localised content is now translated and adapted in the same way for B2B as it is for B2C. It allows B2B marketers to speak to rather than at prospects and to engage with them in a way that is professional without being overly formal.

One of the key principles of digital marketing in the modern age is finding content that resonates with your audience. This can be through videos or images that are culturally relevant as well as with words that connect with your audience and show you ‘get’ them.

A good B2B content marketing strategy is created by determining your brand message and the way you want that to connect your brand with your intended audience. By getting to the crux of how you want your brand to be relatable, you will create a strategy that is adaptable to any market because you are able to convey the underlying principle to creatives who understand the local market you are targeting and have them produce something that fits even if, on the face of it, it seems very different from the marketing material you use in your home country.

Best practice in marketing localisation

The first and most important thing to remember when creating localised content is that you must start work on it as soon as you decide to move into a new market. You can’t expect to establish yourself in the market and then adapt your content as you will spend the initial weeks or months deliberately distancing your brand from your target market. Content must be localised from day one.

Most brands typically have the same types of content:

  • Brand content (About us, vision, mission statement etc)
  • Marketing content (Landing pages, blog posts, product pages, social media posts)
  • Technical content (Manuals, how to…, product descriptions, user guides, FAQs)
  • Legal content (Terms of use, disclaimers etc)
  • Back-end content (Form entries, number formats etc)
  • Contact information

Each of these is treated differently when it comes to creating localised content.

Brand content

The majority of this will be fairly simple to translate and will only require minor edits to make sure it is accurate and written appropriately for your target audience. Remember, readability is a key part of SEO and your content will need to gain the approval of Google’s web crawlers for the locality you are targeting.

Marketing content

This is what really connects you with your target market. It is likely to use idioms, slang terms and images/videos that appeal to your audience as you aim to create an emotional connection with them. It is vital that you make sure this content conveys your intended meaning after being translated and is not likely to cause offence or drive people away.

Technical content

This must be accurate. As with marketing content, nuances can make a difference and getting this wrong can damage the trust your clients have in you.

Legal content

There is no place for ambiguity here. Everything you say must be truthful and line with local laws and regulations.

Back-end content

It would be easy to forget this when creating localised content but that could have serious implications. For example, in some countries, it is normal to have just one name. While users could feasibly fill in a box for a second name to fulfil your criteria and sign up, the likelihood is that they will feel put out by this and choose to go elsewhere. Even if they do decide to sign up, this does not show your business in a good light. Likewise, different countries have different standard date formats. Getting these details right will almost certainly go unnoticed. But getting them wrong is potentially damaging for your reputation.

Your content localisation strategy should be based on these 4 core principles:

1. Know your market – If you don’t have in-depth understanding of the market yourself, find an agency that does

2. Translate, localise and optimise – Be aware of cultural nuances and SEO techniques for your target market

3. Promote your content – You have content that you can be proud of, so get it out there. And use those local experts to help craft your blogs and socials too.

4. Analyse, amend and expand – You’d do it with your marketing materials in your home country, so do it with your localised content too. Just because it’s not rude or offensive, there is no guarantee that your localised content will work. If you’re using A/B testing, make sure all iterations are accurate and appropriate.

Conclusion

Success with localised content is about balancing cultural and linguistic nuances with your branding. At Lucdigi, we work with companies from all around the world, helping them to target the right customers, in the right locations, with the right content.

For more details and to discuss how we can help make your localised content impactive and effective, get in touch today.