If you’re using landing pages, content offers or other inbound marketing tactics to tap into your target market, you’ve probably become an expert at picking out the dead-end leads in your growing databases and contact lists.
They probably look something like this:
- Gmail address when you want to be sure you’re speaking to a decision-maker.
- First- and last-name conventions like Moon Dancer instead of John Smith.
- Job titles listed as ‘student’ when you’re selling big-ticket items like yachts.
Not many students can afford a yacht, but perhaps their parents can — and that’s why you keep them signed up instead of sucking it up and hitting the ‘purge’ button like HubSpot did back in 2015 when it unsubscribed 250 000 people from its marketing blog.
Your definition of a low-value lead naturally depends on your marketing and sales objectives. If brand awareness is your bag, baby, you could argue that there’s no such thing as a worthless contact. Just don’t tell the growth hackers; they’re not really ones for warm and fuzzy content generated for the sole purpose of brand love 🙂
As a rule, your databases are gold worth mining. And no one wants to waste time mining for gold in a coal seam. That’s why, after you’ve gone through the painstaking process of researching and building buyer personas for your product, you need to go the extra mile and sketch out negative personas, too.
What is a negative buyer persona?
Negative or ‘exclusionary’ buyer personas are window shoppers. These are visitors to your website who liked your content enough to sign up for your newsletter or perhaps download your e-book, but for a variety of reasons, they’re never going to buy. They’re just browsing.
Now, you could stick to your guns and keep devoting time and resources to creating content and enticing offers to nudge them through the buyer’s journey… but you know you’re going to be left at the altar.
(Or worse, they do end up becoming customers, but they’re nightmares to deal with. Fickle, regular complainers, over-communicators — they exhaust your team to the point that you’re losing money by servicing them.)
Other methods to sift through a database of potential customers
If you’re still building up the courage to build a negative buyer persona, there are other ways you can exclude certain buyers (or should we say, non-buyers) from your contact lists and databases.
- You could use branching logic when building workflows in your marketing automation and sales tools, so that you can exclude them from your efforts.
- You can use a Prospect Fit Matrix to weed them out at the very last stage of the buyer’s journey i.e. the decision stage.
- You can simply unsubscribe them. While you’ll remain a regular feature in their social feeds and browser history, they probably won’t even notice you disappearing from their inboxes.
It’s worth mentioning that many marketing automation platforms like HubSpot and even MailChimp charge you based on the size of your contact list, usually in increments of 1 000 or 2 000 contacts. All the more reason to Dear John those window shoppers.
How To Set Your Product Pricing When On Amazon
Prices are constantly changing on Amazon, and if you are a seller, you need to keep up. Even before eCommerce, customers chose products based on pricing. If you don’t set the right prices, you can get trumped by the competition.
Sellers not only want to win the best leads, but they are also looking to secure a share of the coveted Buy Box. The Amazon Buy Box requires a strategy and a plan if you intend to have a place in it.
The Buy Box Race
Amazon has two kinds of sellers, Amazon itself and third-party resellers. Multiple merchants selling the same item are not unusual for Amazon. Therefore, the Buy Box concept was introduced. It is a white box that shows up on your product page, and everyone does not have it.
Sellers selling the same product compete for the Buy Box, and the lowest priced one wins it. Eighty-two percent of the sales on Amazon happen through the Buy Box. This number is even higher for purchases on mobile.
Other sellers are grouped at the bottom, while the Buy Box merchants are highlighted. The algorithms for this buy box are a mystery, so you can work hard to win the box by fixing your pricing.
Here are some strategies to stay ahead of the competitors and maintain reasonable prices for your Amazon store.
Do not go for cheap pricing
It is the most common thing that baffles sellers. They think that low pricing will make the customers flock to their shops. Part of this is correct; you will get a flurry of customers based on low prices. However, many customers start relating cheap with low quality. Your store may look like a cheap items store, which is not the right image.
The best way to go about this is to price your products by 1.5% more than the lowest seller. This way, you are not cheap, and your prices are competitive. Use this as your default strategy for most of the inventory. You might win a share of the Buy Box with this little tip.
People also keep the prices 30% above the cost price and then add a fee to it. It is better to take the long-term approach and reset the prices every three months.
This tip is for private label sellers, not resellers. The customer sitting at the other side of the screen does not care about how you manufactured the product. They also do not care about the money involved or inventory costs. It is your job to make the product look appealing (price-wise) to them while keeping other expenses at bay.
A cost and profit pricing model are not suitable for private label sellers on Amazon. Private sellers have the most significant advantage in the books; they are not competing with resellers! In this case, your product price is what the ideal customer would like to pay.
Conduct thorough research on what customer trends dominate your niche and Amazon trends. Make a persona that urges customers to care about your label as a whole. Use ecommerce techniques like writing compelling copy, creating a story, and promoting a wholesome brand.
Provide value to your customers through competitive prices and customization. Send handwritten thank-you notes, followed by a happy email. Pay close attention to feedback on prices so that you can reset once needed.
The $10 law
When using fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) services, use the $10 law. Rules change when your products go above or below the magic number of 10. It is tricky to keep a profit for products below $10 because of the FBA fee. So, these lower-priced products will have a lesser margin.
If you have a low price item, do not despair. The best way to go forward is to introduce bundle offers. Bundle offers to look lucrative and get you some profit around the $10 price. You are good to go if you already have healthy profit margins.
Keep learning and improving
Even when things look shaky, never make decisions in a panic. Plan well, and stay on track with the help of a price tracker. An Amazon Revenue Calculator can help in keeping a check on trends and predict upcoming peak times. If you do not have access to a tool, you can maintain a spreadsheet of your Amazon pricing history.
Look at what your competitors are doing. Are they suddenly sporting a low price? Use past learning and sales data to predict future trends, and data is an excellent guide of what works. Some products are on the inventory for too long, and then some best sellers fly off the shelf. You decide to set the right prices for all of these products.
Once you go through this cycle, you will come out with so much learning and insights. You should also take part in industry conversations and talk to other sellers. Long-term success on Amazon starts with data, so you must learn some analytical skills to skim through this data.
Stay away from the manufacturer’s product description. Write your own product description, from the eye of a first-time buyer. Before you even think about selling, fix your store and make it look like the best one out there.
Most sales on Amazon happen through the search bar. Around 70% of customers find the product on the first search result page. So, you must optimize while keeping keywords in mind. What’s the point of reasonable prices if customers can’t see your store in the first place? Amazon SEO can help you get more traffic to your store and turn it into a profit.
According to Amazon:
While these strategies are there to guide you, you must keep your eyes open for new trends. No plan is a good plan unless you customize it according to your business. Use your intelligence and competence to set the right prices.
Pricing your products is an essential step in your seller journey. Never make assumptions, because nowadays you have enough data and insights at hand to make an informed decision. Happy selling!
Article submitted by guest contributor Alma Causey
How to Make Product Videos that ACTUALLY Drive Your Sales Up
Are you trying to increase your business’ sales? Product videos can be the ticket you are looking for.
These videos let you showcase your products or services in ways that few other types of content can. Done right, they can consistently encourage ideal customers to commit to a purchase – Which is easier said than done!
For these videos to work, they have to be crafted in a customer-centric way. It’s not just about showing your product or how it works, but making their key selling points shine while tying them to the audience’s pain points.
As any savvy video marketing team would tell you, a well-crafted product video can have a dramatic impact on a person’s stance toward your product. They can increase brand trust, and nurture longer-lasting customer relationships… But not every piece works the same.
In this article, we will go over the basics of how to make an awesome product video that works, and give you insight that you can use for your next piece!
Most Effective Types of Product Videos
There are plenty of ways and formats in which you can approach a product video. So, the first thing you’ll want to do is figure out which one suits your situation best.
When it comes to promoting your products, having a satisfied client share their experience can be a game-changer.
Before buying, potential clients want to be sure that they are making the right choice; testimonials and reviews are perfect to set their minds at ease – and put them that much closer to sealing the deal!
“Comparisons are odious”, says the phrase, but, used correctly, they can be a powerful tool in video marketing. Comparison videos present different options for similar products and show one as the best, focusing on its advantages.
With these pieces, you want to be clear and to the point. Highlight the advantages of choosing your product above others. One caveat: These videos are more “acceptable” in certain niches, like cosmetics, than in others, and are often tied to social or influencer marketing.
Also known as demo videos, they are meant to describe how a product or service operates, providing visual guidance of its functions. Does your product require technical know-how? Then a tutorial is probably in order.
Keep in mind that tutorials should be in-depth, play-by-play explanations. As such, make sure they are both detailed and relevant. Crafting tutorial videos on trivial matters can potentially backfire.
If you want your potential customers to get a clear sense of what your product is about, and how it can help them, you can’t do better than explainer videos.
Explainers are all about weaving your customer’s needs into an interesting narrative that presents your solution to their problem as the best alternative around. Their focus is to tell your audience, “We understand your problem, and here’s what you can do about it” in a compelling and entertaining way.
Some Essential Pre-production Tips
Regardless of the specific type of product video you end up going for, there are some useful pre-production tips that will fit any and all. Tips you should keep in mind if you want to make a piece that actually helps your sales!
Set Your Goal Early On
It might sound like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised by how many people fail to have a clear idea of their product video’s purpose from the get-go. Yes, you want to sell more, but how exactly are you going to go about it? Do you want to introduce a product and build awareness? Do you want to teach potential customers how your product works? Showcase the ways in which your product is better than the competition?
Determining your goals will help you choose the kind of video product you need to work on and lead to a much tighter, better-crafted piece.
Know Your Audience
Spend some time doing demographic research to find out what your potential clients are looking for in a product. Know which problems they wish to solve, or the needs they want to fulfill. You can also look for the opinions of happy clients to find out what they like the most about your products.
Customizing your product video’s angle to fit these aspects will help you get your potential customers’ attention much more easily, improve engagement, and boost your video’s effectiveness.
Create A Compelling Script
You need an engaging script to hook people’s attention – especially if you are competing with social media content!
The script is the soul of your piece and will end up affecting all aspects of it: Pacing, believability, and overall effectiveness. Your product’s benefits should be at the forefront and always under the lens of your potential customers’ pain points. Reinforcing the advantages that you want to convey.
Moreover, at the end of the product video, make sure to always include a clear and compelling call-to-action to persuade the audience to take action.
Design an Appealing Storyboard
Storyboards aren’t optional! They are an indispensable tool to help you guide the visual aspects of your piece.
A storyboard gives a detailed overview of the frame-by-frame action and progression of the scenes that will make up your piece. So, ask yourself what images would synergize best with the segment of the script they are paired to. Don’t be afraid to try a couple of things and move elements around, which often helps to make a tighter final product.
Properly Branding Your Product Video
Whichever type you end up going for, your product video has to showcase your brand’s identity.
You need to transmit your company’s personality in every single detail – color palette, fonts, music, logo inclusion… All the brand-representation elements should make an appearance in some form or another. However, be careful not to overdo it! When it comes to branding in video, subtlety is most often the best way to go.
Promoting and Distributing Your Product Video
Here’s a thing a lot of companies stumble upon when it comes to video marketing: finishing your video is not the same as being done! Once you have a great piece, you need to capitalize on it by putting it in front of your audience as effectively as possible.
Here are some tips that can help you in that regard.
Start with YouTube
Don’t you have a YouTube channel? It might be time to create one and start uploading your marketing video on to it.
Having your product video on YouTube allows it to rank independently from anywhere else you uploaded it to, and over time become a go-to spot for people to see your content. It’s also a reliable repository for your content – if you use your video’s YT link with anyone, you can rest assured it’ll be available 99.9 percent of the time.
Share It On Social Media
Use your social media profiles to distribute your video as well! Facebook timelines, Instagram feeds, and Twitter feeds can be fantastic places to expand your reach and bring more eyes to your products.
When using social media, remember to keep your video mobile-friendly. It’s often a good idea to enable silent play mode and add captions or subtitles to make your video understandable, even in silent mode.
Place It On Your Website
If your potential customers want to find out how your product or service works or its main features and advantages, one of the first things they’d probably do is go to its related website.
Along with some images and text explaining what you are offering, make sure you put your product video front and center. Multimedia experiences are the closest that online customers can get to your actual product, so placing your piece in key pages of your conversion funnel can make a huge difference.
Include It In Your Email Marketing Campaign
Using product videos in combination with email marketing is just too good of a match to ignore. Sharing the right piece with an existing subscriber base can have a remarkable effect on your conversion ratios.
You can embed YouTube videos or add an engaging video thumbnail image with a play video button at the top. That way, recipients will be directed to your website or YouTube channel to continue watching the piece and hopefully take action after.
Product videos are an excellent way to expand your brand’s reach and convince doubtful clients to try your products or services once and for all. But you need to use them the right way.
Choose the type of product video that better fits your campaign’s needs, and pay attention to the pre-production tips we discussed today. Spend time establishing the goals and the target audience and design a good script and storyboard.
Once that’s taken care of, don’t sleep on your laurels! Work hard to capitalize on your video and make it available as much as you can! After all, the best piece will be useless if it never gets seen.
Follow this advice to the best of your ability, and I guarantee you’ll be surprised by the impact and return a single product video can deliver!