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The Complete Guide to Empathetic Marketing
Successful empathetic marketing is about connecting your audience and your brand. That doesn’t mean just throwing ads at your audience. It means creating truly valuable assets — content that serves customers’ needs and addresses their most significant pain points.
This type of content is much easier to create when it’s informed and driven by empathy. When you put yourself in your customers’ shoes, you can more easily acknowledge struggles and think critically about the best solutions.
Below, let’s go over why empathetic marketing is such a powerful strategy for businesses of all types and sizes, tips for infusing more empathy into your marketing, and a few real-life examples of empathetic marketing in practice.
Table of Contents
The Benefits of Empathetic Marketing
As Dr. Brené Brown notes, “Empathy is feeling with people.”
Showing empathy in your marketing helps build trust between your brand and your customers. And during a time when more consumers are losing confidence in brands, brand trust is a major win if you can achieve it.
A 2022 PwC survey found that only 30% of consumers have a high level of trust in companies.
If you can get on the other side, however, you may be on your way to becoming one of the most trusted brands by consumers.
All it takes is a more insightful perspective on where your customer is coming from, their needs, and how your brand can help them meet their goals.
Tips for Empathetic Marketing
You know you want to infuse more empathy into your marketing, but how exactly can you do that? Here are the best tips to remember if you want to be an empathetic marketer.
Put the customer at the forefront.
Empathetic marketing starts and ends with your customer, so it only makes sense to put their wants and needs at the forefront.
Empathy is about understanding something from another’s perspective by seeing something through their eyes. To empathize with customers, imagine their experience with your brand. Look at your product or service from their viewpoint, and think about each step they may take.
Better yet, you can follow real-life customer journeys to see their actions when shopping on your site or digesting your content.
To truly understand your customers’ experiences with your brand, take time to dive into each step of their journey so you can better understand what they may want or need during each stage.
Be open to feedback.
Operating in a vacuum is easy because that’s how they’ve always been done. But to truly practice empathy in your marketing, you have to bring your customers into the planning aspect so you can hear directly from them.
They can share what they want to see from your brand or what should be changed.
To collect feedback from your audience, go directly to the source. Run a survey or host a focus group to learn exactly what your customers’ challenges are, what they need, and how they view your brand.
These insights can help you better understand how your product or service plays a role in helping your customers navigate their challenges or achieve their goals.
Your customers will tell you if the messaging doesn’t land. Be open to shifting your approach if that’s what it takes for your message to resonate.
Always be listening.
While you should always collect direct feedback from your customers and audience, gathering insights that they don’t personally share with you is essential. People tend to be more honest when they aren’t talking directly to a brand or think the brand won’t see their comments.
Pay attention to the overall sentiment when your brand is mentioned online to see the general feelings towards your company, whether positive or negative.
Tune into your customers’ conversations, the feedback they’re sharing about their experience, and their general sentiment about your brand. You can do this by monitoring social media comments, checking out reviews on your site, or tracking reviews on third-party sites.
Understanding your audience and their various needs is essential to empathetic marketing. The last thing you want is to break their trust. Being fake or putting on a persona is the quickest way to do that.
Whenever you share content or conduct outreach, be genuine in your approach. Transparency goes a long way in being authentic, so always lead with empathy if you want your content or messaging to resonate.
Provide your customer with the right content.
After all of the listening and empathizing you’ve done, it would be a shame not to put that learning into practice. And yet, some brands continue to share content their audience isn’t interested in. This is the last thing you want to do.
If you want your marketing approach to resonate with your customers, delivering the content you promised them is essential.
After running surveys or focus groups, explore how you can adjust your product, messaging, or communication channels to better meet the needs of your most loyal customers.
Empathetic Marketing Examples
Now that you know what empathetic marketing is and how to incorporate it into your strategy, let’s walk through eight brands that nail empathetic content marketing across various media.
With the tagline, “Fresh, handmade cosmetics,” LUSH is a beauty brand that is all about natural products.
As such, we see its radical transparency in the “How It’s Made“ video series, where LUSH goes behind the scenes of some of its most popular products.
Each episode features actual LUSH employees in the “kitchen,” narrating how the products are made. Lush visuals (pun intended) showcase just how natural the ingredients are.
You see mounds of fresh fruits, tea infusions, and salt swirled together to become the product you know and love. It’s equal parts interesting and educational.
Why This Works
LUSH customers want to buy beauty products that are truly natural. They care about using fresh, organic, and ethically sourced ingredients — hence why the videos feature colorful, close-up shots of freshly-squeezed pineapple and jackfruit juices to drive that point home.
Taking customers inside the factory and showing them every part of the process — with a human face — assures them that they can consume these products with peace of mind.
LinkedIn Talent Solutions provides HR professionals the tools they need to improve recruitment, employee engagement, and career development practices within their organization.
LinkedIn Talent creates helpful content on a dedicated blog to supplement these tools. The blog offers tips that address the challenges of the talent industry. LinkedIn also develops reports offering deeper insight into different industry sectors, such as this Workplace Learning Report.
Why This Works
One effective empathy marketing tactic is education. LinkedIn wants to empower its audience to do work and hire better (and use its product to do so).
This report is just one tool that offers its audience deeper insight into the industry while positioning the brand as a powerful resource.
Through offerings like this, customers learn that they can rely on LinkedIn as a trusted source to guide them in the right direction, and LinkedIn can continue to provide solutions through its product offerings. It’s a win-win all around.
The Home Depot
The Home Depot is a home and garden supply store that caters to all types of builders and DIY-ers — whether you’re a construction worker building a gazebo or a homemaker experimenting with gardening.
In other words, their content must cater to various demographics.
Home Depot is all about DIY, so its marketing focuses on what its supplies can help you do.
This “How to Plant a Wildflower Garden with Seeds” guide teaches consumers to grow their own wildflower garden using seeds, common flower types to plant, and what supplies they need. It even outlines the difficulty level and estimated time to complete the project.
Why This Works
As one of the most trusted brands by consumers, Home Depot knows its customers rely on the store to supply them with DIY tools and navigate these hands-on projects — with a little encouragement along the way.
This quick guide delivers on these needs and inspires customers to take action.
We’ve seen just about every twist on gum marketing: sexy encounters, romantic trysts, and more. Extra is pushing past that narrative.
The brand realizes that gum is a seemingly mundane product, but its omnipresence means it’s there for many of life’s little moments.
Hence, the #ChewItBeforeYouDoIt campaign is all about taking a moment to chew a piece of gum before doing, saying, or acting during your daily life. Extra suggests that doing so can be the difference between a good moment and an awkward experience.
Why This Works
In many ways, gum is a product meant to enhance intimacy, making your breath fresh for more closeness. In our techno-connected world, those everyday moments of intimacy are often overlooked.
This campaign relates to regular moments we’ve all experienced and points out how something as simple as chewing gum can make a difference in your day.
Microsoft offers a range of products from Azure to Microsoft 365. Many of these products are generally used by developers to build their own platforms or tools. To make sure these developers are supported, Microsoft created communities.
These communities help developers connect and learn from one another and are organized into different product categories, such as Microsoft 365 or gaming. People can tailor their experience based on what topics they’re interested in.
Why This Works
Developers are always seeking tips and tricks for using their go-to tools, and while there are many digital channels from which to learn, going straight to the source is always a great option.
Through interactive communities, Microsoft ensures developers can get the support and training they need to use its tools and even connect with others.
In a world where Pinterest dominates, Michael’s chain of craft stores is making a play to capture its own audience on its own properties. The brand provides craft tutorials and product features on a projects page on its website.
These projects offer step-by-step instructions on creating various crafts for beginners and advanced crafters alike.
Each project on the site also includes links to materials you may need that can be found in Michael’s online store. If you want more help with your craft, Michael’s even offers virtual and in-store classes for select projects.
Why This Works
Crafting is an exciting hobby, but not without its own frustrations. Providing useful tips and hacks on how to do things better via a free publication helps readers do more of what they love with fewer headaches.
Additionally, fans get to share their enthusiasm through social by using the hashtag #MakeItWithMichaels, helping Michael’s extend its reach to a bigger crafting audience.
JetBlue is a brand known for superb customer service and humor. At this point, we know where it flies and we know its hook, so its marketing needs to extend beyond the services provided.
As such, JetBlue’s content focuses more on the world of flying and the experiences we all have.
JetBlue is a brand known for superb customer service and humor. At this point, we know where it flies and its hook, so its marketing needs to extend beyond the services provided.
As such, JetBlue’s content focuses more on the world of flying and the experiences we all have.
JetBlue addresses every type of customer who may fly on its planes, from families to pets to children. That’s one reason the airline launched JetBlue Jr., an educational video series for kids ages 7–10.
The videos go over all types of aviation topics, from vocabulary to physics, in an entertaining and digestible way for kids to learn.
Why This Works
If you’re a parent, you know how much of an undertaking it can be to fly with children.
Brand marketing isn’t often tailored to children, so it’s refreshing to see JetBlue consider all passengers and empathize with a parent’s desire to keep their kids entertained while traveling.
Girlfriend Collective is a sustainable clothing brand. While it has a devoted following, it’s always searching for ways to more deeply connect with its audience. The company’s email marketing channel is a fantastic outlet for that.
Girlfriend Collective uses email to share new products or upcoming launches. The brand also generally uses a targeted approach to help customers make purchasing decisions, sending more personalized emails.
One email from the brand was more personal than most and showed deep empathy and understanding for its audience.
Before Mother’s Day, Girlfriend Collective sent this email to customers, allowing them to opt out of receiving Mother’s Day promos.
Why This Works
Holidays like Mother’s Day or Father’s Day can be emotional for many people for various reasons. Girlfriend Collective gave its audience a choice to opt out of seeing these potentially triggering emails, which not many brands take the opportunity to do.
This move demonstrates that Girlfriend Collective cares about its customers and sees them as humans.
Ready to Try It?
Approach the content you seek to create from a perspective that puts others’ wants, needs, and dreams before your own. That’s the smartest way to grow an audience.
In doing so, you’re showing people that you care about them as humans, first and foremost. People want to work with (B2B) or support (B2C) people that they like and companies that they believe “get” them.
You can always talk about your brand and what you’re peddling once a connection and a relationship are established. But if you do things right, people will be drawn to you, and you won’t ever have to toot your own horn.
AI Marketing Automation: What Marketers Need to Know
Artificial Intelligence continues solidifying itself as a crucial tool within the marketing industry, especially regarding automation.
In fact, the market for artificial intelligence in marketing is expected to grow to more than $107.5 billion by 2028 — a huge leap from $15.84 billion in 2021.
So, marketers must stay current on the many ways AI marketing automation can and should be used to remain competitive. To keep you in the loop, here’s a breakdown of AI’s role in marketing automation and how marketers can leverage it.
How is AI driving marketing automation?
Why Marketers Should Use AI in Marketing Automation
Ways Use AI in Marketing Automation
Successfully implementing AI Marketing Automation
How is AI driving marketing automation?
At its core, AI uses machine learning to mimic how humans learn and improve accuracy by analyzing large stacks of data. When applied to marketing automation, AI analyzes vast data sets to pinpoint patterns, predict customer behavior, and make immediate decisions.
As a result, AI and machine learning algorithms are helping marketers automate and optimize tasks that would otherwise be tedious, time-consuming, and expensive. So, it’s no surprise that AI marketing automation is here to stay.
In 2020, the global market for marketing automation was $4,438.7 million, and it’s expected to grow to $14,180.6 million by 2030. Moreover, the top 28% of businesses actively use marketing automation and AI tools in their process.
Why Marketers Should Use AI in Marketing Automation
AI-powered marketing automation can streamline marketing processes. This gives marketers the time and space to focus on other aspects of their job — such as brainstorming and strategizing.
AI marketing automation also makes sending personalized content to customers easier, thanks to data and algorithms. Other benefits include cost efficiency and optimization of ROI.
Automating repetitive tasks can save money. For example, using AI chatbots to communicate with customers would eliminate the need for human customer service agents, which can save costs over time.
And companies that implement AI in marketing see an average increase in ROI of up to 30%, according to a study by Accenture.
Ways Use AI in Marketing Automation
Below are some ways marketers can leverage AI to automate their processes.
McKinsey’s Next in Personalization Report shows 71% of consumers expect companies to provide personalized interactions. Furthermore, 76% of consumers experience frustration when they don’t receive personalized interactions.
Creating personalized experiences for all of your customers can be tedious, time-consuming, and unrealistic without automation.
AI can automate the process by analyzing customer data and behaviors and using that information to tailor each customer’s experience.
For example, Whole Foods leverages AI to provide customers with personalized messaging.
In 2021, Whole Foods opened several Just Walk Out stores across the U.S. The stores allow customers to pick up their items and leave without stopping at a register.
Instead, the items are charged via AI. The purchase information gathered by the AI is then used to identify patterns and predict future behaviors. This allows the AI to send personalized messages to customers.
So, if a customer purchases frozen vegan dinners, Whole Foods could send promo codes and discounts for other vegan products.
Marketers can send tons of emails to potential leads, but it can take significant time away from more big-picture duties. Your company can quickly send thousands of personalized emails using AI for marketing email automation.
This is especially helpful as your email list grows because who has time to send 200,000 emails multiple times a week?
Furthermore, AI can analyze the performance of your emails in real time, and you can use the data to improve your next set of emails.
Lead Scoring and Nurturing
AI can quickly and efficiently analyze data to determine which leads will likely become customers. With AI, marketers can save time and money on lead scoring while improving their leads’ quality.
AI can also automate the lead nurturing process by effectively guiding leads through the sales funnel until they are ready to purchase, boosting conversion rates.
Part of being a successful marketer is being proactive and anticipating trends. Fortunately, AI is an excellent tool for analyzing and predicting customer behavior and trends thanks to algorithms.
This will allow marketers to adjust their marketing strategies according to predictive data. For example, the data can help a business predict the best time to launch a new product.
There are many channels to consider when marketing your brand, product, or service. With Al algorithms, marketers can easily identify which channels are the most effective in reaching their target audience.
This allows marketing to properly allocate time and funds to channels with the best return on investment.
Customer Service and Communication
62% of consumers would prefer to use a customer service bot rather than wait 15 minutes for human agents to speak with them.
Using AI to respond to customers instantly will improve your customer’s experience and satisfaction while saving time and resources.
AI-powered chatbots can answer frequently asked questions, recommend products, and process orders faster than a team could manually.
Successfully implementing AI Marketing Automation
To leverage AI marketing automation, you must identify the best tools and platforms to help you reach your marketing goals. From chatbots to software to AI-powered platforms, there are many applications to choose from.
For example, HubSpot’s content assistant is a suite of free, AI-powered features that uses generative AI to help create and share materials such as written content, outlines, and emails.
We also offer ChatSpot, a conversational CRM bot that marketing professionals can connect to HubSpot to maximize productivity.
The feature uses chat-based commands to interact with your CRM data, so you can accomplish everything you already do in HubSpot faster.
You don’t have to be super tech-savvy to implement AI marketing automation into your business.
All you need is to identify repetitive tasks within your process that could be improved by automation, then find the right tools or software to suit your needs.
Now that you know what AI marketing automation is, you’re ready to find ways to use it.
16 Great Examples of Welcome Emails for New Customers [Templates]
We’ve all heard this maxim, “First impressions last,” so we are aware how important it is to strike a good impression.
Showed up late for a job interview? That’s a bad first impression. Eat a clove of garlic and forget to brush your teeth before a first date? Also a bad first impression.
It turns out that the “make a good first impression” principle holds true not only in face-to-face encounters but in email interactions as well. The outcome of giving a good impression in emails goes a long way to connect with potential business contacts or customer
When you send a welcome email to a new blog reader, newsletter subscriber, or customer, you’re making a first impression on behalf of your brand. To help ensure you’re making the best first impression possible, we’ve rounded up some examples of standout welcome emails from brands big and small.
Pro Tip: Use HubSpot’s free email marketing software to easily create a high-quality welcome email sequence like the ones featured below.
Each example below showcases different tactics and strategies for engaging new email subscribers. Let’s dive in.
The Components of an Impressive Welcome Email
One factor that really impacts the customer onboarding process is the welcome email. While there’s no one-size-fits-all format, there are several key components that can help your email stand out from the crowd and connect with your intended audience. These include:
1. Compelling Subject Lines
Making sure recipients actually open your emails is the first step in making a good impression. Subject lines are critical, so opt for short and straight to the point subjects that state clearly what you’re sending, who it’s from, and why it matters to potential customers.
2. Content Recommendations
While the main purpose of welcome emails is to introduce your brand, it’s also critical to add value by providing the next steps for interested customers. A good place to start is by offering links to the great content on your website that will give your customers more context if they’re curious about what you do and how you do it.
3. Custom Offers
Personalization can help your welcome emails stand out from the pack. Customized introductory offers on products are something consumers often want. If you base these offers on the information they’ve provided or data available to the public through social platforms, welcome emails can help drive ongoing interest.
4. Clear Opt-Out Options
It’s also important to offer a clear way out if users aren’t interested. Make sure all your welcome emails contain “unsubscribe” options that allow customers to select how much (or how little) contact they want from you going forward. If there’s one thing that sours a budding business relationship, it’s the incessant emails that aren’t easy to stop. Always give customers a way to opt out.
Examples of Standout Welcome Emails
So what does a great welcome email look like? We’ve collected some standout welcome message series examples that include confirmation messages, thank you emails, and offer templates to help you with your customer onboarding process from start to finish — and make a great impression along the way.
Type of Welcome: Confirmation
Sometimes the tiniest of elements in a welcome email can speak volumes about a brand. And when it comes to Food52’s welcome email, the preview text at the top of the email, “We brought snacks,” definitely accomplishes this.
Also known as a pre-header or snippet text, the preview text is the copy that gets pulled in from the body of an email and displayed next to (or beneath) the subject line in someone’s inbox. So when you see Food52’s welcome email in your inbox, you get a taste of their brand’s personality before you even open it.
Food52’s welcome email also does a good job of building trust by putting a face (make that two faces) to their name. As soon as you open the email, you see a photograph and message from the company’s founders.
Type of Welcome: Video
From the subject line, down to the conversational tone in the email body, the image of a welcome email above keeps it friendly and simple, so the focus stays on the introductory video inside.
Monday.com is a task management tool for teams and businesses, and the welcome email you get when you sign up makes you feel like a CEO, because Roy Man is speaking directly to you. The email even personalizes the opening greeting by using the recipient’s first name, and this is well known for increasing email click-through rates (especially if the name is in the subject line).
The more you can make your email sound like a one-on-one conversation between you and your subscriber, the better. If you have just so many details that you need to inform your new customer about, follow Monday.com’s lead and embed them on a video, rather than spelling them all out on the email itself.
3. Kate Spade
Type of Welcome: Thank You
Let’s face it, the internet-using public is constantly bombarded with prompts to sign up for and subscribe to all sorts of email communications. So as a brand, when someone takes the time to sift through all the chaos to intentionally sign up for your email communications, it’s a big deal.
To acknowledge how grateful they are to the folks who actually take their time to subscribe, Kate Spade uses a simple but effective tactic with their welcome emails. They say “Thank You” in big, bold lettering. By placing that “Thank You” note on an envelope, Kate Spade recreates the feeling of receiving an actual thank you letter via mail. (The 15% off discount code doesn’t hurt either.)
Type of Welcome: New Customers
If there’s an ideal “attitude” that welcome emails should give off, Lyft has it. The company’s simple but vibrant welcome email focuses entirely on the look and feel of the app, delivering a design that’s as warm and smooth as the lifts that Lyft wants to give you.
At the same time, the email’s branded pink call-to-action draws your eyes toward the center of the page to “Take a Ride”, an inviting language that doesn’t make you feel pressured as a new user.
5. Munk Pank
Type of Welcome: About Us
The Munk Pank’s welcome email is the story of why the company was founded. This is a healthy snack store founded by a husband and wife. In their welcome email, they mention that they started the company because they never seemed to find nutritious snacks to keep them energized and on the go.
This is an excellent version of a welcome email because they let their customers know they can relate to the problems they’re facing and they’ve been there. This helps in building trust and relatability; it also gives customers a peek into what they should expect from their products.
The email ends by sharing the company’s mission to help them live a healthy lifestyle. This welcome email lets subscribers know that they’re joining a tribe that is concerned about their healthy eating and lifestyle; a mission that goes beyond snacks.
6. Who Gives a Crap
Type of Welcome: Product Story
Who Gives a Crap is an organization that sells organic toilet paper, and they’re passionate about it. Their welcome email is equally fun and informative. They state all the reasons why you should opt for organic and eco-friendly products. Then, they sweeten the pot (pun intended) by noting that they donate 50% of their profits to global sanitation projects.
The email reminds the buyer that they still get the toilet paper at the same price they do in the supermarket. They also have a compelling call to action in their welcome email that offers 10% off of their products for people who subscribe to their email list. The company added its “Shop Now” button for convenience, so if readers are convinced to buy, they can do so in one click.
7. SAXX Underwear
Type of Welcome: Free Gift or Offer
SAXX Underwear specializes in men’s underwear, and their welcome email is very catchy and creative. Their subject line “Welcome to you and your balls” is just a taste of how they use a humorous and relatable tone to connect with their audience.
Their welcome email is visual, too. They demonstrate their comfort guarantee with images of models wearing their boxers.
The welcome email also gives a 10% off code for first-time buyers and directs them to their store. Besides the offer, they present their refund policy boldly to offer reassurance for prospects who may be unsure. These gestures help to build trust with their new subscribers and encourage them to buy from them.
What really stands out in the SAXX Underwear welcome email is the tone of the copy and the careful yet bold and catchy choice of words.
Type of Welcome: Free Trial
When you sign up for InVision’s free prototyping app, the welcome email makes it very clear what your next step should be.
To guide people on how to use InVision’s app, the company’s welcome email doesn’t simply list out what you need to do to get started. Instead, it shows you what you need to do with a series of quick videos. Given the visual, interactive nature of the product, this makes a lot of sense.
Type of Welcome: Confirmation
No fancy design work. No videos. No photos. The welcome email Drift sends out after signing up for their newsletter is a lesson in minimalism.
The email opens with a bit of candid commentary on the email itself. “Most people have really long welcome email sequences after you get on their email list,” Dave from Drift writes, before continuing: “Good news: we aren’t most people.” What follows is simply a bulleted list of the company’s most popular blog posts. And the only mention of the product comes in a brief postscript at the very end.
If you’re trying to craft a welcome email that’s non-interruptive, and laser-focused on adding value instead of fluff, this is a great example to follow.
Type of Welcome: Event Signup
Inbound attracts business professionals from all over the world. So, it’s fitting that its event confirmation email is simple and easy to follow, with useful links for event information, help, and accessibility.
Keep scrolling and you’ll see even more useful additions, like:
- Links to add the event to your calendar
- Social media sharing buttons
- Directions through Google Maps
This all-in-one approach to event welcomes makes sure that even if people who wish to attend only see one email, that email will include everything they need.
11. Creative Capital
Type of Welcome: New Donor
Nonprofit marketing can be a challenge, but this email sheds light on endless possibilities. In this welcome email, donors to Creative Capital get a healthy dose of inspiration.
The email begins with a striking GIF that combines the work of supported artists with bright thank you messages. It continues with a poetic message about the types of artists the org supports. This is a chance to inspire every donor. It reminds them who their donation is supporting and why that action has massive value.
12. Baltic Born
Type of Welcome: Customer Loyalty
Frequent shoppers can end up in more loyalty programs than they can count, so it’s important for these welcome emails to stand out and show off a big offer.
From the start, this email focuses on concrete rewards. Then, it gives a clear explanation of Baltic Born’s reward system. It continues with a button that compels the recipient to get more points.
And the monochromatic design is attractive, but not distracting or overwhelming, making it easy to read on mobile devices.
Type of Welcome: Confirmation
While many subscribers click submit to solve a problem, positivity is key in a welcome email. This org supports women on their path to wage equality. It could be tempting for this email to start with emotionally-charged language or statistics that show how big a problem the gender pay gap is.
Instead, PepTalkHer shows its understanding of its target audience. This email centers on the support, value, and overall awesomeness of this community. It also adds useful links to social media and website channels. This helps jump start each signup’s journey.
14. Third Love
Type of Welcome: Discount Code
As generative AI runs to the forefront of email marketing strategy, personalization is more important than ever before.
This email grabs subscribers with a personalized offer. The customer experience begins with a well-designed online quiz. Then, the results of that quiz are woven into a useful and personal email that includes size and product recommendations, along with a discount offer.
The writing style of this email is personal too, with a signoff that sounds both supportive and genuine.
15. Swipe Files
Type of Welcome: New Customers
There’s nothing quite like a personal welcome email to make an impression on new subscribers. It’s said that good writing is good thinking, and this welcome email is a great example of that idea. This message reads authentic, kind, and curious. It uses direct language, easy-to-read paragraphs, and simple calls-to-action. This shows every subscriber what they’re getting into with their subscription and leaves them excited for more.
16. Oui the People
Type of Welcome: Discount Code
Powerful graphics are another way to make a strong first impression. After signing up for skincare brand Oui the People’s mailing list, the welcome email that hits your inbox makes a gorgeous visual statement that shows the brand’s vision and personality. Then, it uses bold type to make a compelling offer.
The copy that follows not only matches but amplifies the vibe of the opening image. “Together, we’re going against the grain of traditional beauty to create (damned good) products that feel like they were designed just for you and all of your glorious complexity. Life-changing, not you-changing.” The one-two punch of graphics, CTA, and copy makes it tough not to engage with this welcome.
Welcome Email Templates
Need a little help in getting your welcome email efforts off the ground? We’ve got you covered with free welcome message templates to streamline the connection process.
Each template shows a different way you can welcome your customers. These examples make it simple to send a welcome email to meet your customer’s needs at their current spot in the customer journey.
An About Us welcome email introduces new subscribers to your company with a firsthand story. It gives you a chance to share who you are, what you do, and what you stand for. This helps you develop a relationship with your subscriber, which can help them feel more invested in your brand.
It’s also a chance to set expectations about the content or benefits you offer to your subscribers.
Hey [First name],
Welcome to [Brand name]. We’re thrilled to have you join us on our mission to [insert company mission or vision].
We started [Brand name] to solve [insert the problem your product or service solves] because [creation story for your founder(s)]. We want to inspire people to [insert big-picture product impact].
We are constantly refining our product to live up to our vision.
We believe that [our product] will make a difference for you too, and we can’t wait to hear your story. Please feel free to reply to this email and tell us about you and what you hope to achieve.
Thank you for joining us on this journey. We look forward to hearing your story.
Looking forward to hearing more,
Product story emails showcase your product or service and give you a chance to educate and inspire with your welcome. A product story welcome email doesn’t just have to be about how you created your product. It can tell stories about:
- The problem your product or service solves
- Product benefits
- The materials you use to make your product
- Key product features
This welcome email can help you expand brand awareness as well as improve customer engagement and conversions.
Hi [First name],
Thank you for choosing [product or service]. We’re delighted to share [product].
At [Brand name], we understand that [problem that the product solves] is a challenge. That’s why we [share how your product is made, the materials you use, or features]. With our product, you’ll get [insert the benefits of the product and how it can solve the problem the customer is facing].
Thank you for joining the [Brand name] community. We’re here to help. And if you have any questions or feedback, contact X at [email, social media, or phone number].
p.s. [add a short personalized note for postscript].
Video welcomes are a quick and powerful way to connect with new customers, subscribers, or employees. You can feature the people, culture, or messaging that represent your brand in your video. Videos are also a great way to share:
- Product features and benefits
Video welcome emails can help your business stand out from companies sending text-only email communication. They’re also a quick way to grab attention as you begin your relationship with a new contact.
Welcome to [Brand name], [first name of your subscriber].
We’re excited to share this video message [insert link to the video]. It will tell you a little bit about [content of your video].
Watching this quick video is just the first step toward reaching your goal of [desired outcomes for contact]. Our team is always here to offer you the guidance and resources you need.
Thank you for being a part of the [Brand name] community.
Free Gift or Offer
Free gifts and welcome offers give new subscribers and customers a tempting reason to re-engage with your brand. They’re useful for creating urgency. These welcome emails are also a great way to highlight personalized offers for the latest addition to your email list.
A free offer or exclusive gift can improve customer retention and loyalty, as well as build anticipation for future offers.
Hey [First name] —
Welcome to [Brand name]!
As the latest (and greatest) addition to our community, we’d like to give you a free [insert gift item]. It’s our way of saying thank you for choosing us for your [product type] needs.
To claim your [offer], just add the promo code FREEGIFT at checkout and your gift will be on the way to you soon.
If you have any questions or feedback until then, please get in touch at [contact information]. We’re always here to help.
[Signature or Brand name]
An event signup welcome email is key to the event registration process. This one piece of communication:
- Confirms successful event registration
- Offers important event logistics
- Highlights speakers and other event details
- Prepares attendees for the event
This type of welcome email is also a first step to connecting with a customer. It builds trust and shows how they can benefit from further engagement.
Hi [Attendee name],
Thank you for registering for [Event name]. We can’t wait for you to join us during this important event.
This email includes your registration confirmation, event location, date, and more.
- [Registration Confirmation Details]
- [Attendee name]
- [Attendee email]
- [Registration type (such as VIP, General Admission, etc.)]
- [Number of tickets]
- [Confirmation code]
- [Event name]
- [Event location]
- [Date and time]
This session will include [featured panels, speakers, sessions]. We’ve also organized [meeting rooms, mixers] for networking opportunities and connecting with your peers. You’ll also have the chance to see [special events, attendee-only exclusives].
Note: You’ll need your confirmation code or badge to enter the event, and we’ve attached a PDF with other helpful tips.
If you have any questions about your registration, contact [Event organizer] or respond to this email.
Thank you again for registering for [Event name]. We can’t wait to see you there!
Confirmation emails can sometimes feel cold or impersonal, so this is another email where it’s vital to add some welcome. A confirmation email assures your subscriber or buyer that they’ve successfully completed signup. It’s also a chance to share useful information to make them feel more comfortable about what comes next.
For example, you might want to add order details, shipping, or the day of the week your newsletter comes out. Personalizing this welcome email can go a long way to building trust with your subscribers.
Hi [First name],
Thank you for your [subscription] to [Newsletter or Brand name]!
There’s just one more step to complete the process and join [Brand name’s] community of [term that describes your customers, such as business owners, rock stars, nature, lovers]. Click the link below to confirm your subscription.
With that one click, you’ll be the first to know the latest updates, products, and resources from us. You’ll also have access to quality content and support.
Thank you again for subscribing. We can’t wait to share and learn with you.
Your welcome email for a free trial is important because it sets the tone for your relationship with each customer. It’s a chance to say thank you, offer extra help, and set expectations for your product.
This first email is also a chance to show users how to make the most of your product and point out features and benefits they might miss on their own.
This welcome email has a specific goal — to turn that free trial into a paying customer. With that in mind, it’s important to strike a balance. This email should point out tips, features, and details, but not overwhelm with too much information.
Hi [First name]!
Thank you for signing up for your free trial of [product or Company name]. We can’t wait for you to try out our [product].
With your free trial, you’ll have access to [popular features] so you can test what works for you. To make the most of your free trial, [outline first step], then [list two or three potential use cases].
If you’re looking for support or instructions, check out [links to support, help, and social media resources]. You can also take a quick look at the product video below for a quick walk-through.
We’ll be in touch with next steps for your trial soon. Until then, thank you again for choosing [product or brand name]!
Hoping this is helpful,
Thank You welcome emails lead with gratitude to your subscribers and customers. Whether they’re signing up for your newsletter, RSVPing for an event, or making a purchase, this welcome email leads with the positive.
Hi [First name],
Thank you for choosing [Brand name]. We’re so happy you decided to [join, subscribe, complete a purchase].
Giving you a great experience is our top priority — and on that note, we want to make sure you know that our [Customer loyalty team, customer support team, social media community] is here with news, offers, and more just for you.
Again, thank you for choosing [Brand name]. We look forward to offering you quality products and winning service for many years to come.
Welcome Email Template for New Customers
Your new customer welcome email often marks the beginning of the customer relationship. This email usually contains a lot of information. It might include order confirmation, product information, helpful tips, or a review request.
At the same time, it needs to set a tone that emphasizes the character and value of your brand and products. So, it needs to be welcoming, engaging, and encouraging.
This is really exciting: Welcome (officially) to [your product or service here]. We’re so lucky to have you.
[I/we] are here to help make sure you get the results you expect from [your product or service here], so don’t hesitate to reach out with questions. [I’d/we’d] love to hear from you.
To help you get started, [I/we] recommend checking out these resources:
- [Resource 1]
- [Resource 2]
- [Resource 3]
If you need support, you can reply to this email or give us a call at [555-555-5555]. [I/we] can talk you through the details and information you need to get started.
Looking forward to hearing from you,
Discount codes make great welcome emails. This is because they lead with something your subscriber wants. It encourages a purchase, but this email is also a chance to show appreciation, develop brand awareness, or boost new products.
To make the most of this type of welcome email, think about limited-time or occasion-specific offers. This adds urgency and gives you a chance to quickly boost your customer relationship.
You don’t have to wait to experience [popular products]. As a welcome to our community, we’re offering you a special discount.
To use your discount, just enter the code WELCOME10 when you check out. You can use this code to purchase [specific products or special promotion].
One more thing: Be sure to take advantage of this offer before [expiration date].
If you need any help or guidance using your discount code, just get in touch with [support team information.]
Some customers will get more than one welcome email from you, so it’s important to make your welcome email specific. One example — your customer loyalty program. When someone signs up to be an affiliate or joins an incentive program for your brand, they need a different kind of welcome.
As you draft this email, focus on personalized connection. Whether you’re offering thanks for their support, sharing sneak peeks, or giving exclusive offers, each customer needs to feel special.
Use surveys, interactive features, and integrations to collect feedback from current customers. Then, once your subscribers become loyal customers, you can use these tools to make your loyalty welcome email super personal.
Hey [First name],
Welcome to [Brand loyalty program]! You’ve joined an exclusive group of customers who make our brand and products better, and we are so excited you’re here.
Customer loyalty at [Brand name] means [outline top loyalty program benefits]. It’s a personal thank you for choosing our products.
Your membership also includes these perks:
To make the most of your benefits, [share first steps to activate membership].
We also want to hear from you! Contact us with any questions or feedback — our team is always here to help.
Your first purchase, [name of first product purchase], set you on the path to becoming one of our most loyal customers. We can’t wait to see what you’ll do as part of our [Loyalty program] community.
Each new donor has a major impact on your business’s future. So, the way that you welcome each donor is a key part of their experience.
This welcome email is a chance to offer thanks, review your company’s mission and vision, or ask for continued or deeper engagement. The donor welcome email is also a time to:
- Share inspirational stories
- Highlight the problems your organization is working to solve
- Offer recent data on the status of your work
Dear [Donor name],
I’m writing to personally welcome you to [Nonprofit Organization name]. Thank you again for your generous donation.
Your contribution is making an immediate impact on our work to [revisit your mission and/or vision].
With your support, our team will continue to [outline important services and impact]. With continued work together, we can make a lasting difference.
We will stay in touch with updates and events at [Nonprofit Organization name]. We’ll also share critical updates on how your contribution is improving [share recent data and statistics toward critical goals].
Thank you again for your donation, and for choosing to be a part of [Nonprofit Organization name]’s vision.
Now that you’ve seen some great examples of welcome emails and templates, let’s dig into the process of writing a great email and catching customer attention.
1. Write a catchy subject line.
Research shows that while more than 90% of welcome emails are opened, just 23% of them are actually read. That means if your welcome email doesn’t catch the eye of your new customer, they may not know you sent it at all.
The best tool you can leverage to increase email open rates is the subject line. A catchy and actionable subject line can draw customers in and make them curious about your content.
When writing subject lines, be sure to include what your email is promoting and how it will benefit your customer. Remember to be concise, because the reader can only see a sentence or two in the preview. A good rule of thumb is that your subject line should give enough information to pique the reader’s interest, but not enough so that they need to open your email for the full details.
2. Restate your value proposition.
Although this may seem like an unnecessary step to take, it can actually offer some significant benefits.
The most obvious benefit is that it gives the customer some reassurance that they made the right decision signing up. It’s never a bad thing to remind customers why they created an account with you, and it clarifies exactly what they can expect to achieve with your product or service.
This also gives you the opportunity to clearly explain any ancillary services or features that you offer that could create more stickiness with your business. This is especially true if you have a complex solution with unique features that customers might not know about.
3. Show the next onboarding steps.
Now that you’ve reminded them why they signed up, get them fully set up with your product or service. Usually, there are steps that users must take after signing up to get the most out of the platform. Examples include:
- Completing their profile information
- Setting preferences
- Uploading necessary information (such as contacts into a CRM, profile picture for a social media profile, etc.)
- Upgrading their account or completing an order
4. Generate the “A-ha” moment.
This is one of the most important steps to take in a welcome email, and there’s a substantial and data-driven reason behind that. Former Facebook head of growth, Chamath Palihapitiya, discovered that if you can get a user to acquire seven friends within 10 days, they were much more likely to see Facebook’s “core value” and become a returning active user. This is known as an “a-ha moment,” in which the customer understands how they benefit from using your product or service.
The goal is to get the user to this aha moment as quickly as possible so your product sticks and the customer achieves success as soon as possible. This will produce a better overall customer experience and ultimately help your business grow.
To get this done, first identify your business’s “core value” and the obstacles or prerequisites customers must complete to receive this value. Then you can use your welcome email to guide new customers through these tasks.
5. Add helpful resources.
As mentioned in the previous step, you want the user to see the value immediately. But, customer success doesn’t stop there. Depending on the nature and complexity of your product, customers may need more help. For example, customers might need guidance on troubleshooting, utilizing advanced features, or getting the most value out of your core features.
It’s likely that you’ve already created help content addressing common questions from customers. Whether it’s tutorial videos, an FAQ page, or helpful blog posts containing best practices, this help content is essential to customer success. Why not include it in your welcome email? This gives them the tools they need upfront without forcing them to search for the information after a problem arises.
6. Provide customer service contact information.
The final step to setting your customers up for success is making sure that they know how to contact you. You can spend all the time in the world creating excellent help content, but you can’t foresee every possible problem that will arise for your customers.
Even if you could, customers are only human, and not all of them will be willing to pore through your help resources to find the answer to their questions. So it’s best to be forthright with customers on how they can get in touch with you for help.
Adding this contact information to your welcome email is a great way to lay the foundation of trust needed for building a relationship. It drives customer loyalty and reassures readers that you are available if they need you. Avoid sending customers on a treasure hunt just to find a way to ask you a simple question. This will lead to frustration and send them into the arms of your competitors.
7. Conclude with a call-to-action.
You should wrap up your welcome email with a call-to-action that entices customers to begin the onboarding process. After you’ve demonstrated your company’s values and explained how you’re going to help them achieve their goals, customers will be eager to get started. So, make things easier for them by providing a button at the end of the email that triggers the first step in the onboarding process.
Here’s one example of what this could look like.
Pro tip: To scale the process, you can use the steps above to create an AI prompt that will generate a first-draft welcome email in seconds.
Just plug your value props, next steps, and CTA into a tool like HubSpot’s Campaign Assistant to get started. You can even use the same prompts to create matching ad copy or landing page content.
Get Started with HubSpot’s Campaign Assistant
How to Write an Employee Onboarding Welcome Email
Welcome emails aren’t just for customers. The onboarding process has a huge impact on how the new employees feel about your company, so it’s important to give it the time and energy it deserves.
One of the important parts of this process is the onboarding welcome email. It has to match the company’s tone and outline all the expectations you have for the new employee. If this is your first time writing an onboarding email, you’ll find the following steps helpful.
Here are the steps to follow when writing an onboarding email.
1. Decide on the content of your onboarding email.
Before you start, it’s important that you are aware of the content of an onboarding welcome email.
The contents are going to vary based on the conditions. For example, an email onboarding remote employees is completely different from an onboarding email for an employee who will work onsite.
For an onsite employee, the onboarding email should include:
- Welcome events
- First-day schedule
- Arrival instructions
- How to access their workstation
- Break room details (where to warm lunch, get coffee, etc.)
- Dress code
- What they’re required to bring (passport, ID, social security work, or any other paperwork)
- Parking information
- Contact information
For a remote employee, the content may include:
- First-day schedule
- Contact information
- Signup details for collaboration tools
- Welcome video conference meeting (time to be held)
Again, you can change the content based on your company’s needs.
2. Decide on the tone you want to use in your email.
The next thing you need to decide on is the tone you want to use in your onboarding email. Do you consider your company friendly, casual, or super formal? Whatever your answer is, it should reflect on the tone of the onboarding email. This gives the employee an idea of the kind of workplace environment they should expect. It also sets the tone for how your new employee is expected to use when representing your brand.
3. Draft your onboarding email.
The next step is to draft your onboarding email. While the tone of your email might change to fit your needs, here is an example of a template you can use.
Dear [Employee’s name],
We are very excited to welcome you to [company name]. Please remember to carry your ID to get easy access to our premises. We expect you to be in the office by [time], and our dress code is [formal/super casual].
At [company name], we pride ourselves on creating the best environment for our employees. As you’ll see, our team has already prepared your workstation for you and set up your software to make your first day easy. You’ll also be given access to your designated parking spot, a customized company bag, t-shirt, and mugs, among other goodies.
Our team has also planned all the details for your first week to ensure you settle easily. You’ll receive a document with your schedule and agendas for your first week from HR when you arrive. Human Resources will also help you fill in the required paperwork and answer all your questions. After the meeting with HR, you’ll be assigned a mentor who will show you the ropes of our company and how we get things done.
Our team is excited to meet you during the [planned event].
If you need any clarity before you arrive, please contact me by phone [phone number] or email. I’ll be more than happy to help.
Welcome to the [company name], [employee name]. We are looking forward to working with you and watching you grow and soar to greater heights!
4. Edit your email.
After writing your email, make sure you edit it to make sure you include all the necessary details. You can also use tools like Grammarly for any grammatical errors. You can also have a colleague double-check the email. Remember to attach any necessary documents, links, or images as supplemental information.
5. Send or schedule the email.
Lastly, send the email or schedule it so it’s received in a timely manner. For example, you want to avoid sending an onboarding welcome email on Sunday evening, which may give the wrong impression.
This will allow the new Employee to be psychologically prepared and find the necessary documents.
Make a Great First Impression
Bottom line? Whether it’s in person, over the phone, or by email, first impressions matter. Your welcome email is often the first chance a prospective customer or contact has to see what your brand is all about and if you don’t stick the landing, they’ll likely go somewhere else.
Luckily, writing a great welcome email is simple. It’s not necessarily easy, but if you focus on what matters such as compelling subject lines, great content, personalized offers, and always, always a way to opt out, your first impression can help lay the groundwork for long-term relationships.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in April 2016 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
12 Tips on How to Become an Influencer [+Data]
The influencer landscape is incredibly lucrative. In 2022, the influencer market was valued at $16.4 billion and is estimated to hit $21.1 billion in 2023. If you want to step into the influencer market, you’re probably wondering how to become an influencer.
In this article, we’re going to dive into what it takes to become an influencer and the steps you need to take to find success. First, let’s define an influencer.
How to Become an Influencer for a Brand
9. Network with other influencers.
10. Create a media kit and pitch yourself to brands.
How to Become an Influencer on Social Media
1. Build an online community around your content.
2. Repurpose content as necessary.
3. Always be willing to learn and be open to new platforms.
What is an influencer?
An influencer is a person with the ability to influence consumers to purchase a service or product by promoting, recommending, or using them on social media.
For example, Jackie Aina is a beauty and makeup influencer who has collaborated with and promoted brands such as e.l.f. Cosmetics, Too Faced, Milk Makeup, and more.
How to Become an Influencer for a Brand
If you want to become an influencer who works with brands, here’s what you need to do to reach your goal.
1. Find your niche.
First, figure out what you’re passionate about. Is it fashion, tech, entertainment, health, or something else? From there, carve out a niche within your passion to set yourself apart from other influencers.
For example, if you want to be a fashion influencer, you might decide your niche is thrift store fashion, DIY fashion, or stylish outfits on a budget. If you need help finding your niche, determine who your target audience is first.
To determine your target audience, consider your ideal consumer’s wants, needs, challenges, and goals. Then use that information to create a buyer persona to find the right niche to tap into your target audience or use HubSpot’s Buyer Persona Generation Tool.
2. Choose your platform.
Once you know your target audience, you must choose a platform (or platforms) to reach them. Instagram is one of the most popular platforms for influencers and brands, and it’s easy to see why.
According to our social media trends survey, 72% of marketers listed Instagram among the social media platforms on which they work with influencers and creators.
Furthermore, most marketers surveyed (30%) said Instagram is the platform they get the most significant ROI when working with influencers and creators. However, that doesn’t mean Instagram is the right choice for everyone — mainly if your ideal audience doesn’t spend much time on that platform.
For example, if you’re an influencer whose niche has to do with video games, Twitch might be the better platform. Video game fans often tune into Twitch to watch content creators play their favorite games or to stream their playthroughs.
If your audience is mostly Gen Z, you’ll likely want to consider TikTok as your platform of choice.
You should also research other influencers in your niche to see what platforms they leverage the most. For example, style influencers are primarily on Instagram or Pinterest. Entertainment influencers may mostly be on TikTok or YouTube.
Once you know which platform your audience and fellow influencers frequent the most, you can select the right social media platform to post your content.
3. Create a content strategy.
The format and quality of your content will make or break your chances of successfully building yourself as an influencer. Decide on the format you’ll use when creating your content.
The format should be feasible on the platform you choose to leverage, and it should be a format that allows you to deliver valuable information while showcasing your unique personality.
An effective content strategy will give your audience a proper balance of informative content and personal content. Remember, relatability and authenticity are the reasons people trust influencers.
In fact, 72% of TikTok users find “normal creators” more interesting than celebrities, according to the platform.
To find the perfect balance of content for your strategy, use the 5-3-2 principle. With the 5-3-2 principle, five out of every ten posts would be curated content from a source relevant to your audience.
Three posts should be content you’ve created pertinent to your audience, and two posts would be personal posts about yourself to humanize your online presence.
You’re probably wondering, “How will this help me become an influencer if half of the content I publish is curated?”
For starters, influencers are known for being able to provide valuable content to their audience. That includes sharing content written by others that they believe their followers will find helpful.
Sharing content published by other influencers in your niche will help you slowly get their attention. As a result, it will be much easier to reach out to them and ask them to do the same for you later on.
When it comes to the quality of your content, you should invest in equipment such as mics, cameras, and lighting to give your audience gorgeous content that will keep them coming back for more.
Pro Tip: Smartphones have excellent cameras these days, so you can use your phone to record your content if you’re not ready to invest in an expensive camera. Just make sure to use the front-facing camera for the best image.
4. Distribute your content.
No matter how great your content is, if you’re not getting people to see it and engage with it, it’s not exactly practical.
That said, it’s essential that you carefully plan out when you’ll be publishing and distributing your content on social media.
The best time to post content on social media hugely depends on which social media channel you choose. This infographic provides a detailed breakdown of the best days and times to distribute content for each popular social media network.
It’s just as critical to know how to post your content on social media. While each social media channel has its own rules and guidelines, here are some general best practices that are applicable regardless of which social media channel you use.
5. Start a website.
Whether you leverage YouTube, TikTok, Pinterest, or some other social media platform — you should always have your website as an influencer.
Websites are great for SEO because they allow you a space to create evergreen content with keywords that are optimized to get you at the top of SERPs.
You can create content around themes and keywords your audience is searching for, allowing them to flock to your website.
Furthermore, a website is an excellent avenue for consumers to engage directly with and buy products from you. It also allows brands and advertisers to learn more about you and your content and reach out to you for opportunities.
Finally, securing a long-term home base is the most important reason to have a website. Social media platforms change constantly. An app that’s popular today can lose users to tomorrow.
Even worse, a platform can completely shut down, taking all your content with it.
A website that houses your business information, content, links, and points of contact will help you stay relevant and grow as an influencer for years to come.
6. Stay updated.
As an influencer, staying tuned into the latest trends and buzzy topics is essential.
So, follow other creators in your niche on social media, keep an eye out for trending hashtags and challenges, and know what keywords your audience is searching online.
You also need to remember that social media platforms will often change their policies, algorithms, and posting terms — so stay updated to avoid your account becoming irrelevant or, worse, deleted.
Most importantly, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) guidelines and policies, especially if you’re going to be collaborating with brands to promote their products and services on your social media accounts.
7. Be yourself.
Remember, authenticity is key to being a successful influencer. Almost 70% of marketers say “authenticity and transparency” are crucial to successful influencer marketing, according to Econsultancy.
Moreover, 61% of consumers prefer influencers who create authentic, engaging content.
The best way to be authentic is to be yourself. While your content should be quality, you yourself don’t have to be flawless to be an influencer.
If your house cat walks into your shot, or you laugh as a car blasting music drives by as you’re recording — it’s okay!
Don’t be afraid to be silly on camera or show off your sense of humor — consumers love influencers because they’re more relatable and “real” than celebrities or companies.
8. Engage with your audience.
When your followers leave a question or comment on your posts, take the time to acknowledge and respond to them. That can make them feel valued and that you sincerely want to help them. It will also help you develop a relationship with them.
Of course, not all of the comments and questions will be positive. As an influencer, expect that you’ll have your fair share of negative comments and criticisms. Make it a point to keep your cool and address them professionally.
9. Network with other influencers.
Collaborate with other influencers in your niche to expand your audience and grow your network. You can find potential collaborators through social media, online communities, or by attending conventions and vents.
Having business cards to pass to potential collaborators also doesn’t hurt.
10. Create a media kit and pitch yourself to brands.
A media kit is an influencer version of a resume or portfolio. An influencer media kit contains information about your work, successes, audience size, and why brands should work with you.
Every influencer should have a media kit to email to marketing professionals, brand representatives, and agencies to find work.
The kit’s design is just as important as its content because you’ll want a design showcasing your personality because personality is key.
Media kits also make you look more professional. Many people step into influencing and content creation as a hobby. Having a media kit shows companies you are not a hobbyist and are serious about your work.
Your kit should include the following:
- Your photo
- A short bio
- Your social media channels, along with your follower count on each platform
- Engagement rate
- Audience demographics
- Website link
- Information about past work and collaborations
You can design a media kit using Canva or purchase media kit templates from Etsy. You can also download media kit templates from HubSpot by clicking here.
11. Be consistent.
Your followers need to be able to consistently count on you to deliver quality content. If you don’t, they’ll eventually stop following you or at least paying attention to you.
Scheduling your posts using a social automation tool like eClincher or HubSpot’s social publishing tools can help ensure you stay consistent with your posts.
Instead of manually publishing on each of your social media profiles, these tools allow you to create, upload, and schedule posts in batches.
12. Track your progress.
This step is crucial, especially if you’re looking to collaborate with brands for their influencer marketing campaigns, since this is one of the things brands look for in an influencer to partner with.
Most social media channels give you insights and analytics to monitor your progress — things like demographics, reach, and engagement rate that will show how quickly (or slowly) you’re building your audience.
It will also shed light on which content formats get the highest engagement rates so that you can create more.
How to Become an Influencer on Social Media
The steps above are all applicable to becoming a social media influencer. Some additional tips to keep in mind are:
1. Build an online community around your content.
Building trust with your audience is critical to your success as an influencer. One way to build trust is to build a community around your content.
Create a space where your audience can ask questions, engage with your content, and find others who enjoy your work or niche.
Some influencers start communities on Discord, Reddit, or other platforms to speak candidly with their followers. You can also host live Q&As or start your own hashtag for your followers to use to connect.
2. Repurpose content as necessary.
Fresh and interesting content should always be the priority when influencing, but sometimes it helps to repurpose content.
Repurposing content is especially helpful when you’re pressed for time, lacking fresh ideas, or just need to post something to keep on schedule.
You can also repurpose content to give your posts a second life on other platforms. If you have an Instagram Reel that performed well but could use more eyes on it — repost it to TikTok or YouTube Shorts.
For more ways to repurpose content, click here.
3. Always be willing to learn and be open to new platforms.
As I mentioned earlier, social media platforms often fall in and out of favor with audiences, so always be ready to pivot when a platform is losing steam.
Keep an eye out for up-and-coming social channels, and always keep a pulse on where your audience is tuning in.
Ultimately, to be a successful influencers you need to be authentic, organized, flexible, and willing to adjust to evolving trends.
And of course, you need to create quality content that shows brands and your followers that you are serious about your work. Now that you know the steps you need to take, you’re ready to dive into the influencer market.
YouTube SEO: How to Optimize Videos for YouTube Search
How does YouTube SEO work? What are the steps to optimize your YouTube videos for search? The answers to these questions are simpler than you might think.
While it might seem difficult to get any exposure on YouTube, you can implement certain strategies to ensure that the YouTube algorithm favors you in the search results.
In this post, we’ll go over proven YouTube SEO tips that have worked for HubSpot’s YouTube channel and that will work for you, regardless of your channel size. Let’s get started.
How to Rank Videos on YouTube
To get videos to rank on YouTube, we must first understand the YouTube algorithm and YouTube’s ranking factors.
Just like any search engine, YouTube wants to deliver content that answers the searcher’s specific query. For instance, if someone searches for “how to tie a tie,” YouTube won’t deliver a video titled “how to tie your shoelaces.” Instead, it will serve search results that answer that specific query.
So, as you try your hand at YouTube SEO, think about how you can incorporate terms and phrases that are used by your target audience.
You’ll also need to think about YouTube analytics and engagement. When it ranks videos, YouTube cares about a metric called “watch time” — in other words, how long viewers stay on your video. A long watch time means that you’re delivering valuable content; a short watch time means that your content should likely not rank.
If you want your videos to rank, try to create content that’s optimized for longer watch times. You can, for instance, prompt users to stay until the end of the video by promising a surprise or a giveaway.
Is it worth optimizing videos on YouTube?
Trying to rank videos on YouTube might seem like a lost effort. Only the most well-known influencers and content creators seem to have any luck on the platform.
However, that’s not the case. As a business, you can enjoy views, comments, and likes on your videos — so long as you find the right audience for your content. In fact, finding and targeting the right audience is even more important than creating a “beautiful” video. If you’re actively solving your prospective customers’ problems with your YouTube videos, then you’ve done 90% of the YouTube optimization work.
In addition, ranking videos on YouTube is a key element of your inbound marketing strategy, even if it might not seem that way. As recently as a decade ago, inbound video marketing was a brand new idea. Marketers were learning that they couldn’t just publish a high volume of content — it also had to be high-quality and optimized in ways that made it as discoverable as possible through search engines.
That content was once largely limited to the written word. Today, that’s no longer the case. Instead, a comprehensive content strategy includes written work like blogs and ebooks, as well as media like podcasts, visual assets, and videos. And with the rise of other content formats comes the need to optimize them for search. One increasingly important place to do that is on YouTube.
If you’re feeling lost, don’t worry. We cover the most important YouTube SEO tips and strategy below so you can effectively optimize your content for YouTube search.
YouTube SEO combines basic SEO practices with YouTube-specific optimization techniques. If you’re new to search engine optimization, check out this complete SEO guide.
To be successful on YouTube, you’ll need a clear strategy. This strategy has two parts. First, you need to understand how YouTube SEO works. Then, you’ll want to use that knowledge as you choose a target audience, develop a plan for your channel, and set goals for growth.
How YouTube SEO Works
YouTube is part of Google and it uses similar search algorithms to show users the videos that best match their search queries.
This algorithm uses different elements in each video post to decide how that video will rank for specific search terms. These elements include:
- Video title
- Video description
- Number of views, comments, and likes
- Watch time
The algorithm also considers the past activity of the person who is searching. This helps search results feel more personalized to that user.
When combined, these signals tell the algorithm how relevant, popular, or engaging your video post is for a user’s query.
Choose a Target Audience
For many content creators, audience growth starts with picking a topic, then optimizing YouTube videos. But with growth comes competition. It was once simple to create a YouTube channel for a broad topic like product reviews or tech, but today new YouTube channels need a more specific focus.
As you narrow your target audience, think about who you want to engage with your channel and why. Ask yourself:
- How much do you know about your target audience?
- Why do they spend time on YouTube?
- What other social media platforms does your audience prefer?
- What inspires their interest and loyalty?
- Are there other YouTube channels or creators that you should partner with to connect with this audience?
Develop a Plan
Creating a content plan can seem simple if your YouTube channel centers on a topic you love. But most of the time, the challenge isn’t in coming up with ideas, it’s about making them happen.
If you want to optimize YouTube for SEO, content planning isn’t just about what videos you’re making and when to post them. It’s a process to figure out what resources you need to improve traffic, conversion, and engagement with your video content.
For example, you may have a great idea for a video about surfing, but where are you getting your footage? If you’re not recording yourself or your local community, it may be tough to find high-quality source material for your videos.
Building professional skills or a team with expertise in editing, sound, and animation can also boost the quality of your videos. But if those resources aren’t readily available to you, you may need a plan to create great videos without them.
Competitive analysis can also help with planning, whether you’re figuring out the right video length or where to promote your videos on other social platforms.
This free content planning template can help you create a solid plan for your YouTube strategy.
Featured Resource: Content Planning Templates
Set Goals for Growth
YouTube offers many helpful metrics that can help you assess whether your team is meeting your strategic goals. Broad metrics can be helpful to track consistency and big shifts in performance, like algorithm changes.
But it’s also a good idea to choose focused metrics that align with your goals. For example, if you want to increase your audience, track your subscriber count, impressions, and audience retention. If engagement is your goal, look at likes, comments, shares, and watch time. Driving web traffic? Add links to your video descriptions and annotations, then track those sources on your website.
Tracking the metrics that align with your goals will help you learn how you’re growing your audience. You can use that knowledge to create more effective videos for your users and SEO. And that effort will help you keep growing your YouTube channel.
1. Rename your video file using a target keyword.
Just like you would when optimizing written content, you’ll use an SEO tool to first identify keywords you’d like your video to focus on (you can browse popular YouTube SEO tools later in this post, or just click this link).
With a keyword identified, the first place to put it is your video file — before you even upload it to YouTube. Why? YouTube can’t actually “watch” your video to see how relevant it is to your target keyword, and as you’ll learn in the tips below, there are only so many places you can safely insert this keyword on your video’s viewing page once it’s published. But, YouTube can read your video’s file name and all the code that comes with it when it’s uploaded.
With that in mind, replace the “business_ad_003FINAL.mov” file name (don’t be embarrassed — we’ve all been there during post-production) with your desired keyword. If your keyword is “house painting tips,” for example, your video’s file name should be “house-painting-tips” followed by your preferred video file type (MOV, MP4, and WMV are some of the most common that are compatible with YouTube).
2. Insert your keyword naturally in the video title.
When you search for videos, one of the first things that your eyes are drawn to is the title. That’s often what decides whether you’ll click to watch your video, so the title should not only be compelling, but also clear and concise.
Although your keyword plays a big part in your video title, it also helps if the title closely matches what the viewer is searching for.
It’s a good idea to optimize your title for keywords so long as the keyword fits naturally into a title that tells viewers exactly what they’re about to see.
Lastly, make sure to keep your title fairly short — HubSpot campaigns manager Alicia Collins recommends limiting it to 60 characters to help keep it from getting cut off in results pages.
3. Optimize your video description.
First things first: According to Google, the official character limit for YouTube video descriptions is 1,000 characters. And while it’s okay to use all that space, remember that your viewer most likely came here to watch a video, not to read an essay.
If you do choose to write a longer description, keep in mind that YouTube only displays the first two or three lines of text — that amounts to about 100 characters. After that point, viewers have to click “show more” to see the full description. That’s why we suggest front-loading the description with the most important information, like CTAs or crucial links.
As for optimizing the video itself, it’s smart to add a transcript of the video, especially for those who have to watch it without volume.
An optimized description can also help you show up in the suggested videos sidebar, which can be a great source of views.
If you need a high-performing video description, try one of these proven YouTube description templates.
Download These Templates for Free
4. Tag your video with popular keywords that relate to your topic.
YouTube suggests using tags to let viewers know what your video is about. But you’re not just informing your viewers — you’re also informing YouTube itself. YouTube uses tags to understand the content and context of your video.
That way, YouTube figures out how to associate your video with similar videos, which can broaden your content’s reach. But choose your tags wisely. Don’t use an irrelevant tag because you think it’ll get you more views — in fact, Google might penalize you for that. And like your description, lead with the most important keywords, including a good mix of those that are common and more long-tail (as in, those that answer a question like “how do I?”).
Use these simple instructions to add and make the most of tags in your YouTube videos.
5. Categorize your video.
Once you upload a video, you can categorize it under “Advanced settings.” Choosing a category is another way to group your video with similar content on YouTube so it winds up in different playlists and gains exposure to more viewers who identify with your audience.
It might not be as simple as it looks. In fact, it’s important to go through a comprehensive process to find which category each video belongs in. Answer questions like:
- Who are the top creators within the category? What are they known for and what do they do well?
- Are there any patterns between the audiences of similar channels within a given category?
- Do the videos within a similar category share qualities like production value, length, or format?
6. Upload a custom thumbnail image for your video’s result link.
Your video thumbnail is the main image viewers see when scrolling through a list of video results. Along with the video’s title, that thumbnail sends a signal to the viewer about the video’s content, so it can impact the number of clicks and views your video receives.
While you can always pick one of the thumbnail options auto-generated by YouTube, we highly recommend uploading a custom thumbnail. YouTube recommends using images that are 1280×720 pixels — representing a 16:9 ratio — that are saved as 2MB or smaller .jpg, .gif, .bmp, or .png files. If you follow those parameters, it can help to confirm that your thumbnail appears with equally high quality across multiple viewing platforms.
It’s important to note that your YouTube account has to be verified to upload a custom thumbnail image. To do that, visit youtube.com/verify and follow the instructions listed there.
7. Use an SRT File to add subtitles & closed captions.
Like much of the other text we’ve discussed here, subtitles and closed captions can boost YouTube search optimization by highlighting important keywords.
To add subtitles or closed captions to your video, you’ll have to upload a supported text transcript or timed subtitles file. For the former, you can also directly enter transcript text for a video so that it auto-syncs with the video.
Adding subtitles follows a similar process, but you can limit the amount of text you want displayed. For either, head to your video manager then click on “Videos” under “Video Manager.” Find the video you want to add subtitles or closed captioning to, and click the drop-down arrow next to the edit button. Then, choose “Subtitles/CC.” You can then choose how you’d like to add subtitles or closed captioning.
Find out how to add closed captions to your YouTube video in the video below.
8. Add Cards and End Screens to increase your YouTube channel’s viewership.
When you’re watching a video, have you ever seen a small white, circular icon with an “i” in the center appear in the corner, or a translucent bar of text asking you to subscribe? Those are Cards, which YouTube describes as “preformatted notifications that appear on desktop and mobile which you can set up to promote your brand and other videos on your channel.”
You can add up to five cards to a single video, and there are six types:
- Channel cards that direct viewers to another channel.
- Donation cards to encourage fundraising on behalf of U.S. nonprofit organizations.
- Fan funding to ask your viewers to help support the creation of your video content.
- Link cards, which direct viewers to an external site, approved crowdfunding platform, or an approved merchandise selling platform.
- Poll cards, which pose a question to viewers and allow them to vote for a response.
- Video or playlist cards, which link to other YouTube content of this kind.
For detailed steps on adding a card to your video, follow these official steps from Google, or check out the video below.
End screens display similar information as cards, but as you may have guessed, they don’t display until a video is over and are a bit more visually detailed in nature. A good example is the overlay with a book image and a visual link to view more on the video below:
There are a number of detailed instructions for adding end screens depending on what kind of platform you want to design them for, as well as different types of content allowed for them by YouTube. Google outlines the details for how to optimize for those considerations here.
It’s important to note that YouTube is always testing end screens to try to optimize the viewer experience, so there are times when “your end screen, as designated by you, may not appear.” Take these factors into account as you decide between using either cards or end screens.
These factors may seem a bit complicated and time-consuming, but remember: The time people spend watching YouTube on their TV has more than doubled year over year. There’s an audience to be discovered there, and when you optimize for YouTube, your chances of being discovered increase.
9. Add hashtags to increase reach.
Hashtags are a part of the YouTube user interface that allow you to add related terms to your content, just as you would on LinkedIn or Instagram. Hashtags show up right above your video title for easy clicking and discoverability. You can use your company name, as HubSpot does below, or include related keywords.
We also recommend using hashtags in your YouTube description, but don’t go overboard; the YouTube algorithm constantly checks for spam. Overly hashtagging may get you inadvertently flagged. Instead of using every hashtag you can think of, choose 2-3 that you feel most accurately describe your video.
10. Create a playlist about your video’s general topic.
As you add more and more videos to your content library, group them in keyword-optimized playlists. This won’t only signal to YouTube what your videos are about, but it will also keep viewers clicking from video to video, increasing your view count and, by extension, your rankings.
For example, Yoga with Kassandra grouped all of its short yoga classes in a playlist titled “5-15 min Yoga Classes.” Not only is the title short and descriptive, but the playlist description includes related keywords such as “10 minute yoga classes,” “10 minute morning yoga stretches,” and “bedtime yoga classes.”
11. Experiment with video length.
The more time viewers spend watching videos on your channel, the better it is for your SEO. But not every person on YouTube will stick around for 10 minutes or more.
For example, over 70% of watch time on YouTube happens on mobile devices. While some people can watch an hour-long video on a small screen, this figure shows how important it is to know your audience.
To find the right watch time for your audience, try creating videos of varying lengths. Then, do a quick analysis of the watch time, average view duration, and audience retention for each video and adjust your strategy.
12. Use YouTube’s autocomplete feature.
This feature makes it simple to find the most popular search terms for your video topic. Just start typing a keyword phrase and see what other keywords and phrases come up. Then, add the most relevant terms to your title, descriptions, and tags.
You can also use this tool to discover top YouTube trends or to figure out which keywords your competitors are targeting. These insights can help you pivot your YouTube SEO strategy for better results.
Check out this post for more useful YouTube features.
13. Try timestamps.
Timestamps mark different sections of your videos. They make it easy for your audience to find the content they’re looking for within each video.
Adding a timestamp can improve retention and user experience because it sets expectations. Timestamps give watchers an easy way to jump to what they want to see in a video or a reason to wait for that section to appear on-screen.
Timestamps also improve SEO because they make it easier for YouTube’s algorithm to understand your video content. This helps your video appear for search terms within your video, not just the overall theme of your video.
For example, if your video is about baking a cake, your video might include sections on baking equipment or cake trends like geode cakes. If you add timestamps to mark these sections, a user might not find your video when searching for “how to make a cake” because of competition for this keyword, but they could find it searching for “how to make a geode cake.”
You can manually add a timestamp or add and edit automatic video chapters with YouTube Studio.
14. Add a call-to-action (CTA) in your video and video description.
Calls-to-action are a powerful way to foster engagement. A CTA that offers value not only encourages likes, subscribes, and shares, it can also improve viewer engagement metrics. This can boost your video’s visibility in search results and suggested video features.
For maximum effectiveness, vary your CTAs. On one video you might do a verbal CTA asking viewers to like, subscribe, or share. For another video, ask your audience to bookmark your video or click shared links in your description.
You’ll also want to ask your viewers to share comments and feedback. These actions aren’t just valuable for user experience. They also give signals to YouTube that your video is engaging and offering value to your viewers. Check out these call-to-action examples for inspiration.
15. Review YouTube search analytics.
While analytics are useful for tracking progress toward your goals, you can also actively use this data to improve your YouTube SEO.
Say you’re trying to figure out why traffic suddenly jumped up for one of your videos. It might be that your video is ranking for a popular keyword. Or a popular website recently added your video.
You can dig into the video-specific data and see why that jump happened. Then you can figure out how to optimize other videos with the same tactics.
YouTube analytics can also help you anticipate keywords that are increasing in popularity. Optimizing your videos for those keywords early on gives you a better chance of ranking higher in those search results.
Finally, your analytics can help you better understand your audience. It’s not unusual to start a YouTube channel with an intended audience and then see those demographics shift over time. Analyzing the age, location, and interests of your real-time audience can help you make smart changes.
16. Optional: Leave a pinned comment on your own video.
Leaving a comment on your video might seem over the top, but it’s a smart strategy. Not only do more comments improve your video’s rankability, but they can generate high levels of audience engagement. A pinned comment may result in hundreds of replies, like it did for Matt D’Avelia below:
Be sure to leave an engaging comment that furthers the conversation or offers more value for readers. Here at HubSpot, for example, we leave a resource pinned so that viewers can further their knowledge on the topic. Check out this post for more on YouTube comment management.
1. Choose a target keyword for your video. This can be a topic, a question, or a highly specific query. If you’re not sure of the right target keyword, use a keyword research tool, or simply explore YouTube’s existing content library for inspiration.
2. Include the target keyword in the file name. Don’t use spaces between each word, but rather dashes (-) or underscores (_).
3. Include the target keyword in the title. Next up, work the target keyword into the title of your video, but be creative, and be sure to do it naturally. You don’t want the title to simply be “[keyword].” The title is the first thing users will see, so try to create intrigue and interest while promising to help the viewer in some way.
4. Include the keyword, as well as keyword variations, in the video description. The video description is the lifeblood of your YouTube SEO strategy. Write a natural description with 1-2 mentions of your target keyword, as well as variations of this keyword.
5. Add related tags to your video. While most users don’t use tags to find videos, they can help the YouTube algorithm categorize your video and serve it to the appropriate audience. Add around 5-8 industry tags, being sure to not overdo it so that you’re not flagged as spam.
6. Add your video category. While not as specific as tags, categories help users find your video and help the YouTube algorithm understand what your video is about. Categories come into play on the home page, the explore page, and the sidebar menu.
7. Upload a custom video thumbnail. Create a thumbnail that includes either a variation of your keyword or a short phrase that could generate clicks (like “1,000 organic followers, fast!”). As mentioned, you’ll need to verify your YouTube channel to get access to custom thumbnail uploads.
8. Add subtitles and closed captions. Subtitles and closed captions are a much-needed accessibility component of your videos. They also indirectly help you optimize for YouTube search by giving YouTube a text version of your video content.
9. Add cards and end screens that tie into the topic of your video. Cards are equivalent to internal and external linking, and end screens allow you to engage viewers during those critical last few seconds when a viewer might be tempted to click to another piece of content.
10. Add hashtags to your video. Hashtags are different from tags. They show up above your video title and help you increase reach and authority by further signaling what your video is about.
11. Create a playlist about your overarching topic. One of the best ways to optimize YouTube videos is to create playlists. Finding a few related videos and putting them in a playlist will not only attract more viewers, but it will also help the YouTube algorithm understand how your video relates to others in your upload library.
12. Optional: Leave a pinned comment to generate engagement or provide more value. As a brand, you can and should comment on your own videos — not only for replies to your commenters, but to offer more value to readers.
Now, most of the SEO tips above rely on you finding a keyword and promoting your video correctly. And not all of those tips can be carried out through YouTube alone. To get the most bang for your videography buck, consider some of the tools below to optimize your video for search.
1. HubSpot SEO Marketing Software
Our SEO marketing software, developed here at HubSpot, allows you to find popular keywords for creating content and organizing keywords into groupings — what we call “topic clusters.” By sorting your content into topic clusters, you can oversee which pieces of content are related to one another, which types of content you have planned, and what you’ve already created.
While the keywords you discover in HubSpot reflect their popularity in a standard Google search, many of these topics will also produce videos on Google’s search engine results pages. In those cases, you can create topic clusters that have both blog and YouTube content belonging to them.
Clustering your content — and linking from videos to blog posts, and vice-versa — can give you more authority in the eyes of Google and YouTube, while giving you more ways to capture traffic from the people searching your topic.
Pro tip: HubSpot integrates with YouTube for useful dashboards and performance tracking.
2. Ahrefs Keywords Explorer
Ahrefs is a comprehensive SEO platform that allows you to monitor a website’s ranking, estimate the organic traffic you’d get from each keyword, and research keywords for which you might want to create new content.
One popular feature of Ahrefs is Keywords Explorer, which allows you to look up details related to a keyword you’re interested in. And as you can see in the screenshot above, you can filter your keyword results by search engine — including YouTube.
Ahrefs Keywords Explorer gives you a keyword’s monthly search volume, how many clicks for videos ranking for that keyword, related keywords, and more.
You might know Canva as a design template for creating all kinds of cards, photos, logos, and more. It just so happens this popular product has a Thumbnail Creator just for YouTube videos.
As stated in the tips above, thumbnail images are critical to promoting your content in YouTube search results and enticing users to click on your video. Using Canva’s Thumbnail Creator, you can create the perfect preview image for your video in 1280 x 720 pixels — the thumbnail dimensions YouTube requires.
4. vidIQ Vision
This is a Chrome extension, available through Chrome’s web store in the link above, that helps you analyze how and why certain YouTube videos perform so well. This includes the tags a video has been optimized for, its average watch time, and even how quickly that video might be gaining traffic.
The vidIQ tool then gives an SEO “score” you can use to create content that performs (or outperforms) the results you already see on YouTube.
TubeBuddy is an all-in-one video platform that helps you manage the production, optimization, and promotion of your YouTube content. Its features include an automatic language translator (which helps you rank for non-English keywords), a keyword explorer, tag suggestions, a rank tracker for your published videos, and more.
Cyfe is a large software suite that offers, among other things, a YouTube analytics platform. On this platform, you can track performance on YouTube and on your site.
In addition to traffic analytics, Cyfe can show you which keywords you’re ranking for and which ones are most popular across various search engines. Sounds a lot like Google Analytics or Moz, right? That’s because Cyfe has data from both of those tools, and more, built into it.
Start Optimizing YouTube Videos
Video marketing is crucial for businesses and creators. No matter what SEO tip or tool you start with, a successful YouTube channel begins with good content. Make sure your viewers have something high-quality and relevant to watch when they find you.
Optimizing your YouTube videos can help attract more views and build community — and lead to more conversions and sales. So, start today and watch your YouTube channel grow.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in March 2013 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
50 Ideas for Your 2023 Small Business Marketing Strategy
Whether you’re launching a new business or already have one, having a small business marketing strategy that includes a strong online presence for your brand is essential.
Consumers learn about local businesses online more than anywhere else, with Statista predicting the number of ecommerce users to grow to nearly 290 million by 2027.
If you’re a small business owner with little experience in online marketing, creating a strategy to boost your online presence may feel overwhelming. Have no fear — we’ve got you covered.
In this post, we’ll help you build and optimize your small business marketing strategy using inbound marketing, setting you up to attract new clients and ultimately grow your business.
Small Business Marketing
Marketing is meant to raise brand awareness and build a pipeline of qualified leads that turn into sales. With a small business, getting the word out can be challenging due to less visibility and lack of resources (like budget or time).
However, there are key strategies that can help you scale your small business’s marketing efforts.
Whether you’re struggling with a limited budget, the time restraints caused by a smaller team, or even a lack of direction, a marketing plan appropriate for your business can guide you as you scale.
These strategies are fundamental as you generate awareness and revenue for your organization:
1. Know your audience.
A key mistake is thinking that “anyone” is your buyer. Larger companies may be able to appeal to a wide market, but they say “the riches are in the niches” for a reason.
You’ll have the most leverage as a small business in a niche. And to develop a niche and appeal to buyers within it, you must understand their pains, problems, triggering events, and priorities.
What is pushing them to make a purchasing decision? What does it look like if they succeed? Knowing these things will help you craft messaging that resonates and makes a compelling case for your solution.
Start by thinking about your existing customers and who you’d like to work with. Then, create a buyer persona to get into your ideal client’s head.
Download Free Buyer Persona Templates
2. Emphasize your value proposition.
If there’s no difference between you and your competition, there’s no reason why a buyer would be compelled to work with you.
Your value proposition is what will differentiate you from others in your space and make up your prospects’ minds that you’re the provider to go with.
What do you do better than anyone in the industry? Conveying this makes a compelling argument.
3. Stay focused on singular goals and objectives.
If you’re exploring the world of marketing, you may have noticed that there are a gazillion directions you can go in. It’s tempting to do it all at once and craft a complicated machine in hopes that you covered all your bases.
However, this strategy makes it easy to take on too much.
Instead, identify where the biggest impact will be. Where is the biggest blind spot in your marketing prohibiting your growth?
Set a performance goal around that one key area and focus your resources on the activities and tactics that will achieve that one performance goal.
You can expand your efforts or pivot to other initiatives when you’ve made more progress toward that singular goal.
4. Capitalize on short-term plays.
Start scrappy. As you scale, it’s critical to see ROI sooner. This will give you the momentum and cash flow to put toward larger projects, long-term plays, and more sustainable growth models.
Tactics that take time to build (such as SEO) are poor fits for your primary initiatives because you won’t see a return soon enough for your liking. If you have enough resources to start there, great. However, don’t put all your eggs in that basket.
If you have evidence that people are taking to Google with purchasing intent for your particular solution, you may find that paid ads will give you that short-term ROI.
5. Double down on what works.
Once you have your initiatives running and you’ve experimented with a few things, pay attention to the data. This can inform you of what’s working. As you scale, it’s a good idea to double down on proven methods of generating revenue.
6. Understand the power of existing customers.
On average, acquiring a new customer costs five times more than closing an existing one. This means you shouldn’t stop marketing once they’ve made a purchase.
Identify your opportunities for repeat purchasing, upselling, and cross-selling. Because your existing customers have already made a purchase, they already know, like, and trust you.
If you’ve provided a good experience, you’ve given them a reason to do business with you again should the need ever arise.
Even if the need doesn’t arise (in cases where it’s a one-and-done purchase with no upsell opportunities), you should still delight your customers. Word of mouth is a powerful (and free) promotional tool.
7. Use free promotional tools.
Speaking of free promotional tools, it’s important to note that since you’ve committed to a limited goal and scope, there’s no need to inflate your overhead with gadgets.
Use free promotional tools where possible, and only commit to paid tools if you know they will drastically improve existing operations or performance. Here’s a helpful list of marketing tools (some free, some paid).
8. Create a website to own your online presence.
A professional-looking website is one of the most important assets you will create for your small business. This is where you will show who you are, what you offer, where you are, and how a potential customer can contact you.
It is a channel you will always own, and it has the capability of generating organic traffic in addition to being a place to send traffic from advertising and other marketing initiatives.
Your website isn’t just a simple brochure, either. You can turn it into a 24/7 salesperson by understanding how to convert traffic and turn them into leads (more on that later).
For one of the best website tools, check out HubSpot’s CMS.
9. Consider blogging to attract prospects for your website.
Blogging is a great way to generate organic traffic, particularly for those prospects who have not reached a purchasing decision yet. In addition, it can establish credibility in your space and position you as a thought leader.
To start a blog, you can use an inexpensive or free website tool to make a free site and use one of their templates.
Even if you only publish once a week, it will improve your website’s visibility online and help educate your potential customers on why they should trust your company.
If you plan to write your posts yourself, check out this beginner’s guide to writing.
Once you start writing, you can add a call-to-action (CTAs) on your posts for visitors to subscribe to your blog and receive emails.
This is a great way to start collecting leads and offering potential customers a way to get information if they aren’t ready to buy anything from you yet.
Download Free Blog Post Templates
10. Promote yourself on social media.
With billions of potential customers using various platforms daily, social media is a powerful business tool. Social media marketing can help you engage with potential customers, build brand awareness, and promote your products.
Why wouldn’t you want to be seen where your potential customers spend their time?
Download the Free Social Media Content Calendar Template
11. Collaborate with influencers to create brand awareness.
Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook are top of the list when it comes to social media platforms. But, if your small business is not yet well known on these outlets, consider collaborating with well-established influencers in your niche.
Influencer marketing is currently the top marketing trend. Collaborating with influencers is a surefire way to get your business in front of the eyes of your audience. Influencers understand their (and your!) niche.
Not only do they understand the niche, but influencers have a knack for storytelling — meaning, they’ll be able to effectively tell your business’s story and sell your brand to the appropriate audience.
Consider reaching out to influencers in your niche to add to your small business marketing strategy.
12. Create short-form video content.
Marketers know that a good marketing strategy for your small business should include more than just written content. In fact, in 2022, 44% of social media marketers focused their efforts on creating video content for TikTok.
Adding short-form video content to your marketing strategy is a great idea, as platforms like YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook make connecting and engaging with your audience convenient.
Short-form video content is easily shared, meaning you can quickly get your product or service in front of the right audience — and their friends.
13. Stick to a social media posting schedule.
You shouldn’t just post to your social media platforms hoping that something will become a viral post. Instead, you must focus on intentional content creation and posting.
After you find the social media platform that works best for your business, create a social media content calendar and stick to a regular posting schedule.
But, don’t just post every day for the sake of posting. 83% of social media marketers say it’s better to post at a lower frequency with high-quality content than daily posting.
You’ll likely post irrelevant, low-quality content when you post daily.
Take the time to create engaging, thoughtful content and schedule it for the appropriate times to stand out from the competition.
14. Invest in ads.
Organic traffic takes a while to build, and as a small business, you want to invest in short-term plays. Pay-to-play tactics that target buyers with high intent are great for short-term wins to jump-start other objectives.
80% of brands use some form of paid advertisement. Google Ads are perfect if you know that your target audience is searching the web for your product or solution. If they aren’t, you might consider social media ads instead.
Individuals on social media have less buying intent, but with highly targeted ads and enough impressions, you’ll gain the interest of your audience.
Download the Free Advertising Planning Kit
15. Make sure you’re capturing web prospects’ information.
We’ve been talking a lot about visibility and traffic but haven’t really covered how these will help drive revenue yet. One simple way to start generating leads or customers from your website is to implement a conversion tool.
A simple, free option is HubSpot Marketing Free. By using this tool to add a pop-up widget to your website, you can start collecting the email addresses of potential customers.
From there, you can send out promotions and offers and convert them into paying customers. You can also implement any of these 24 conversion tools to help you optimize your website and use it to drive leads.
16. Use email marketing to nurture leads.
Just because you’ve converted website traffic into leads doesn’t mean those leads are ready to buy yet. It’s important to stay top of mind and move them closer to a purchasing decision.
Email marketing is a critical part of your marketing toolkit, and it is the most effective method of marketing. In fact, 73% of millennials prefer communications from businesses to come via email.
This strategy is an easy, free, and scalable way to communicate with both new and existing customers.
Once you have an email marketing tool in place (many are inexpensive or even free), experiment with emailing out newsletters (with your sleek new blog posts) and other promotions to your database.
We know small business owners don’t have tons of free time to devote to digital marketing, so consider using marketing automation to make this process even easier for yourself.
To get started planning your email marketing strategy, check out this guide and template from HubSpot.
17. Manage relationships with a CRM.
Email marketing works best when you’re sending personalized, targeted emails. This begins with a customer database or customer relationship management (CRM) system.
Your CRM stores information about your leads, prospects, and customers so that you can keep track of customer interactions and identify sales opportunities more effectively.
HubSpot has one of the best CRMs (and, best of all, it’s totally free).
18. Lean into word of mouth as a promotion channel.
As mentioned previously, delighting customers can have a big impact on your business, primarily in repeat purchases and word of mouth.
If you provide a great experience, your customers will be more inclined to leave reviews, give testimonials, and tell their friends about you.
That’s why measuring customer satisfaction and encouraging customers to spread the word is a good idea.
19. Connect with other local businesses.
Take your business to the local community and connect with other local business owners in your area. Consider partnering with local businesses to create discounts, deals, or coupons for customers.
Start a live stream with local business owners during a promotional event or coordinate a giveaway.
Connecting with other small businesses is both great for word of mouth and collaboration. If you collaborate with other local businesses, advertise the promotion or sale on your social media outlets.
Online Marketing Tips for Small Businesses
Now that we’ve covered the basics, here are tips for improving whichever marketing strategies you choose.
1. Determine your brand’s identity.
A consistent brand identity to promote your business will make you look more professional and help you attract new customers. According to a 2020 study, nearly 9 out of 10 people are brand loyal.
Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, has described a company’s branding as “what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.”
In other words, your brand is people’s feelings and emotions when hearing your company name. It combines your brand name, logo, aesthetic, and the design of all your assets, plus the values you support, which is becoming more important to consumers.
2. Identify your buyer persona.
When you imagine a customer searching for your product or service, what are they like? What are their pain points? What is their job? Creating a buyer persona that tells the story of your ideal customer can help you optimize a website for them.
By learning more about your target customer through creating a buyer persona, you can better figure out what types of things they may be searching for so you can include those terms on your website.
3. Design a logo and other assets.
To start getting the creative juices flowing, consider your color scheme and peruse palettes with Adobe Color or Coolors. You can create your own or look through pre-made or customized color palettes.
To create a logo, I’d recommend checking out Upwork or Freelancer.
There are free and less expensive options for designing your own logo online, although using a freelancer or agency can give you a higher quality product and connect you with a designer who can change and update your brand assets as your company grows.
4. Build your website with a CMS template.
If you’re a tech-savvy small business owner, you’ll probably want to build your own website. A content management system (CMS) makes the process simple.
Most CMSs offer customizable templates for your site that you can get for free or for a small fee. There are templates for various skill levels — from beginner all the way to advanced.
Once you’ve created your website, most CMS platforms offer plugins to help you optimize your content for search (look for SEO plugins). This will help you rank better in Google — which we’ll discuss more in-depth in a bit.
5. Draw up a go-to-market strategy.
Once you’ve activated all the tools you need to promote your product or service, you’ll need to create a promotional plan that aligns with the customer journey.
Consider which content will attract, engage, and delight your prospects and how you will convert them into a customer.
To help you plan out this process, use this template.
6. Hire a freelancer to help you scale your content.
If you need help creating regular blogs or promotional content, consider hiring a freelancer over investing in a full-timer. Try Upwork for a freelance blogger, videographer, or photographer.
You could also consider hiring a marketing agency for a larger project.
7. Consult agencies or freelancers for web design help.
If you aren’t technical and want a website built for your small business, you can use a freelancer or a marketing agency specializing in web design.
This is a great option for businesses with an existing website that needs to be updated and revamped for SEO to help improve your Google ranking.
To find a freelancer or marketing consultant in your area, you can use Upwork (filtering by design/creative), Codeable (for WordPress experts), or Freelancer.
8. Track your site with analytics tools.
If you’ve never made a website and aren’t entirely comfortable with the technical elements, many free tools and services can help you get started.
When you create your website, implement Google Analytics or HubSpot Marketing Free (both of which are free products) so you can easily track who’s looking at your site.
9. Boost your Google ranking with SEO.
If you already have a business, have you ever searched for yourself or your product/service online? If so, did you think, “Why isn’t my website showing up on Google?”
If so, you probably thought, “How do I rank on Google?” or “How can I improve my Google ranking?”
There are a lot of factors that play into why a certain site or page appears in the top spots on the Google (or another search engine) search engine results page (SERP).
Backlinko reports some of Google’s top factors, which include having relevant keywords (and their placement on your site), the length of your content, having high-quality content, how fast your page loads, how often you post content, and more.
When it all boils down, Google tries to find the best content to present to the person searching.
For example, if I’m searching for the best salon in Newport, Rhode Island, it wouldn’t be helpful for me to find a web page of a salon that has closed down and is located in Newport, Kentucky.
It would, however, be helpful for me to find a salon in my area with great Yelp reviews, an easy-to-navigate website, and contact information readily available.
Google always wants to surface the most relevant, highest-quality piece of content.
To rank higher on Google, you can leverage the power of SEO. To start learning everything there is to know about this powerhouse marketing tactic, check out The Ultimate Guide to SEO.
HubSpot explains SEO as “techniques that help your website rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).
This makes your website more visible to people looking for solutions that your brand, product, or service can provide via search engines like Google, Yahoo!, and Bing.”
In other words, it’s the basic concept of structuring your website and blog posts to be in the best shape for appearing first on search engines.
SEO strategy usually consists of a few things. These include buyer persona research, keyword research, and on-page SEO research.
These three areas can help you learn how your target market is searching online and position your business to get discovered by the right people.
10. Research keywords opportunities.
Keyword research is an extension of buyer persona research. You can use the personas you’ve created to search for the best keywords for your brand, then use a tool like KW Finder to find related keywords for your target audience.
Then, you can do some on-page SEO research and optimization. This is where you put those keywords in the correct places on your website — like in the meta description, page titles, and H1 tags.
11. Optimize your website for mobile devices.
Most Google searches are done on mobile devices, so it’s important to have a site that looks clean and is easy to navigate when someone enters it on their smartphone.
A mobile site can also be beneficial for SEO, with search engines like Google, which reward you with a higher ranking if you have a mobile site.
You don’t have to be a tech expert to build a site that looks good on mobile. In fact, most CMS platforms like HubSpot already offer mobile-optimized templates.
12. Write optimized blog posts.
Content and blogging are extremely important for your search engine ranking. The more often your desired keywords appear in your high-quality and helpful content, the more likely you are to appear in search results.
A great way to become an authority on your topic, product, or service is to blog.
Make sure you’re writing with SEO in mind — use these SEO tips for bloggers or leverage a WordPress plugin like Yoast.
13. Experiment with photo and video content.
According to HubSpot Research, more than 50% of consumers want to see videos from brands. Additionally, most social media apps, like Facebook and Instagram, are embracing more visual layouts.
To keep up with these trends, it’s a good idea to make a few marketing videos. If you use these tips, producing a few can be quite inexpensive.
14. Launch business pages on Facebook and Yelp.
If your business is focused on a local area, the most important accounts for you are Facebook, Yelp, and Google’s business feature.
Having high Yelp reviews improves your authority online and helps your search ranking. You can claim your business on Yelp for free, customize your profile, add pictures, and ask for reviews.
The same thing goes for registering your Google business page. You can register your business with Google (for free) and add pictures.
If you’ve ever searched for your business in Google Maps and been disappointed not to see it, it’s because you haven’t claimed it yet!
On Facebook, you can create a Facebook business page so that people can find your location and hours.
For any business, having up-to-date social media accounts will help you be found and engage with prospects.
Create a Twitter account, Facebook page, learn how to use Instagram, create a Pinterest page (if relevant), and use them to discover new clients.
15. Build out your social media strategy.
While Facebook and Yelp will be great tools for local searches and reviews, platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter will offer you even more opportunities to share your posts, content, and promotions.
If your customers can purchase your products or services online, these platforms will also give them another way to find you.
Be sure not to spread yourself too thin by joining too many platforms at once. To make strategizing easier, here’s a guide to the five types of social media platforms and the pros and cons of each.
16. Use social media for customer service.
Once you’re on your chosen platforms, be sure to answer customer or follower questions when they ask them through post comments or direct messages. This will make your company look responsive and credible.
Here are some great examples of how brands have used Twitter for customer service.
If you have the means, consider hiring a social media manager with community management experience.
On top of posting content on a regular schedule, community managers are charged with responding to questions or concerns of followers.
Interested? We published a guide on what it takes to be a great social media community manager.
17. Build interesting landing pages.
A landing page offers your potential customers a free resource in exchange for filling out a short contact information form.
When they receive the resource, they might be even more pleased by your company and more interested in buying the full product.
Because landing pages raise your chances of customer conversion, you want yours to look enticing. To get started, read this landing page guide to learn more about what makes this strategy successful.
Then check out these free and professionally designed templates.
18. Plan an email marketing strategy.
Once you start creating regular content and building out landing pages, you’ll want to share them with the prospects who seem most interested in learning more about your product.
For this reason, we suggest building an email marketing strategy.
While you want to be careful not to bombard those who sign up for your email list with too many emails, you want to send just enough to keep your prospects informed and engaged.
Here’s how our metrics improved when we streamlined our email marketing strategy.
If you’ve never sent regular newsletters before, you can use HubSpot or a number of other affordable tools to create and send an email with a professionally designed template.
Many email tools also offer basic analytics that allow you to track open and click rates.
19. Offer coupons in newsletters or on landing pages.
Placing a coupon in your marketing emails can engage and delight your audience. After buying a product or service at a discounted rate, they might also be more willing to pay full price.
If you have a subscription service, offering prospects a code for a free trial can also be helpful so they can test it out.
20. Share your distribution channels on your website.
Once you have a few social media accounts and a newsletter, connect them to your website so your visitors can follow you.
One way companies do this is to display all of their linked social icons and a newsletter sign-up CTA on all pages of your website. A good place to include these is on the top right corner or the footer of each page.
This way, they’re visible but aren’t distracting from any content.
21. Offer a free webinar.
A webinar allows potential customers to sign up for a short online course hosted by you. These courses are usually between 30 minutes to an hour and allow you to give tips and answer questions related to a topic your brand is familiar with.
While this strategy can help you boost your credibility in your field, it can also offer you potential leads and sales opportunities.
22. Try co-marketing.
Is there a local business in your area that isn’t a direct competitor but offers a product or service to a similar target audience?
Consider working with them on a cobranded campaign where you promote each other on social media, via email, or in your blog.
While you’ll give your partnering company added promotion, it will also allow their fanbase to learn more about you.
23. Encourage happy customers to share their experiences.
When a happy customer talks about how great your company is on social media or a review site, your product or service looks like a good investment.
Even on social media, word of mouth is still a huge factor in someone’s purchasing decision.
If a prospect sees a friend raving about your business on Facebook or if they post a photo of a meal from your restaurant on Instagram, they might be more likely to go.
After all, 71% of consumers are more likely to purchase based on social media referrals.
If customers tell you they love your product, encourage them to share the experience on Yelp, Google, or social.
If you have a physical business, you should place signs up with your account handles so customers know who to tag if they post a picture of your product.
24. Try out marketing experiments.
If you’re interested in a new social platform or a new marketing trend, don’t be afraid to experiment. If an experiment goes well, you could be ahead of the game, and it never hurts to be a thought leader in your industry.
When you experiment with a new marketing strategy, have a solid hypothesis or question in mind. This will keep you focused on the end goal and reduce the desire to chase the next big thing as it comes along.
Also, prepare for your next steps if you get good or bad results. Here’s a quick guide to leading a successful marketing experiment.
Small Business Advertising Ideas
Now that we’ve covered some marketing strategy basics, let’s look into how you can put your advertising dollars to work. Below are some ways to tackle advertising for small businesses.
1. Set up Google My Business.
Creating a free Google My Business profile is a simple first step to helping potential customers find your business. It only takes a few minutes to add your business contact information, business hours, photos, and a list of your services.
Another perk of having a Google business profile is that you don’t need a storefront to create one. Your profile also comes with analytics that can help you better understand how customers are connecting with your business.
Additionally, you can check out and respond to customer reviews and learn what keywords brought them to your business page.
2. Consider PPC ads with Google & Bing.
Using pay-per-click (PPC) ad programs like Google Adwords or Microsoft Advertising can also help drive customers to your business. If you’re working hard on SEO, but are still looking for an extra boost, consider PPC advertising.
With this search engine marketing technique, you use Google AdWords or Microsoft Ads to show up as an advertised listing in search results.
Before you dive into PPC, you’ll want to make sure your landing page is as optimized as possible. If you are paying by the click and those who click on the page don’t convert, you will lose advertising dollars.
To help you get started, read this Ultimate Guide to PPC. Then, use this PPC planning template to create an optimized campaign. You can also use a few handy tools and software to edit, track, and report on your campaigns.
3. Run social media ads.
Most major social media platforms offer affordable advertising options that can help you target your posts to a specific audience.
While many small businesses have been advertising on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn for years, Instagram now allows brands to advertise through its Shoppable tool.
Pinterest is also an excellent option for small businesses to advertise. In fact, Pinterest users say the platform has more influence on their purchasing journey than other platforms.
Shopping ads on Pinterst drive three times the conversion of other competing platforms.
4. Sponsor products on Etsy & Amazon.
If you’ve already set up shop on Amazon, you can boost your products by participating in their sponsored products program.
This cost-per-click ad program generates ads from your product listings and automatically targets your ads, making it a great option if you’ve never created a campaign before.
If you’re a maker and sell your wares on Etsy, consider using Etsy Ads to advertise your products. Similar to Amazon, this is a cost-per-click model with a default minimum daily budget of one dollar.
With Etsy Ads, your products will stand out in Etsy Search, category pages, and marketing pages.
5. Leverage user-generated content.
Some of the best advertising you can get is from existing customers. Happy customers can vouch for your brand and add social proof to your marketing campaigns.
Ask your customers to leave reviews, or if they’ve already created content on social media involving your brand, ask permission to share it.
6. Develop a referral program.
Speaking of enlisting the help of your existing customers, you can incentivize them by using a referral program. Offer a discount, free gift, or other perk in exchange for them bringing in new customers.
Referred customers are 18% more loyal than those who aren’t and spend 13% more on purchases. Since these new customers will have been referred to you by someone they know, they’re more likely to have a positive customer experience.
7. Advertise with your local chamber of commerce.
If you have a storefront, advertise with your local chamber of commerce.
Each city is different, but you can typically be featured on their website, promoted on their social media channels, and included in their email newsletter for an annual fee.
It’s a great way to get your brand out there and an excellent opportunity to network with fellow small business owners.
Start Marketing Your Business Today
Small business owners looking for a way to track ROI and brand awareness need digital marketing.
Not only is digital marketing a must-have for promoting your products or services, but optimizing your online assets is also critical to your business’ overall success.
You may have a long road ahead to build your online presence, but any steps you can make will have a huge impact on your business.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in September 2020 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
UTM Codes: How to Create UTM Tracking URLs on Google Analytics
How do you know if Facebook is a worthy investment, or if you’re getting enough traffic from your recent promotional campaign? The answer: UTM tracking links.
UTM codes help you track where traffic is coming from, allowing you to properly measure each campaign’s, platform’s, or medium’s ROI.
In this blog post, you’ll learn what UTM codes are, how to use them, and how to build them in both Google Analytics and HubSpot.
UTM codes are also known as UTM parameters — or tracking tags — because they help you “track” website traffic from its origin. Marketers customize this text to match the webpage the tagged URL is linked on, in order to attribute the success of that campaign to specific pieces of content.
Now, you might be thinking, “Ginny, I have HubSpot, so I already know if my website traffic is coming from Google, email, social media, and similar marketing channels. What does a UTM code tell me that I don’t already know?”
HubSpot Marketing Hub provides you with these high-level sources of traffic, but UTM also helps you drill down into specific pages and posts within these traffic sources. If you’re promoting a campaign on social media, for example, you’ll know how much traffic came from social media. Building a UTM code, however, can tell you how much of that traffic came from Facebook or even a particular post on Facebook.
UTM Code Example
UTM codes can be overwhelming at first, so let’s take a look at an example. Here’s a URL with its own UTM code:
Let’s break this link down.
- https://ift.tt/bDi2Ftw: This is the base URL of the page.
- ?: This signals to your analytics software that a string of UTM parameters will follow.
- utm_campaign=blog_post: This is the first UTM parameter, specifically for the campaign the visitor engaged with (in this case, a blog post campaign).
- &: This denotes that another UTM parameter will follow.
- utm_medium=social: This is the second parameter, specifically for the channel the visitor came from (in this case, social).
- &: This denotes that another UTM parameter will follow.
- utm_source=facebook: This is the last parameter, specifically for the specific website the visitor came from (in this case, Facebook).
In the example above, you’re saying that once traffic comes in from people who click this link, the traffic should be attributed to Facebook. The “medium” is social media, while the “source” is Facebook.
Adding these snippets of code after the question mark above doesn’t affect anything on the page — it just lets your analytics program know that someone arrived through a certain source inside an overall marketing channel, as part of a specific campaign.
UTM Code Benefits
As we’ve already covered, UTM codes are small snippets of code that you can add to the end of a URL to track where website traffic is coming from. They may seem small, but they bring big benefits to marketers. Here are just a few:
- Better tracking: UTM codes allow you to track exactly where your website traffic is coming from, so you can see which marketing tactics are actually driving results. With UTM codes, you can see which sources, mediums, and campaigns are bringing in the most traffic, leads, and sales.
- More accurate attribution: UTM codes also allow you to give credit where credit is due. For example, if a visitor first finds your website through a Google search, then comes back later through a Facebook ad, you can see the entire customer journey and attribute the sale or conversion to both channels.
In summary, UTM codes are a simple but powerful way to get more insight into your website traffic and marketing campaigns. They allow you to track sources and mediums more accurately, and give you a clear picture of which channels are driving the most value for your business. By using UTM codes consistently, you’ll be able to make smarter marketing decisions and optimize your campaigns for better results.
With that, let’s dive more deeply into the ways UTM code links help marketers accurately attribute lead sources.
How do UTM links help marketers?
Crucial aspects of being a great marketer are being able to measure your success and measure your impact. No matter which metrics you use, you want to prove to your boss (and the company) that you’re worth your salt.
You deserve your budget — and maybe need more of it — and you deserve to dedicate time to the marketing activities that work. Building UTM codes that track your campaigns’ success is the best way to prove it.
Relying on your analytics tool’s source and medium breakdown isn’t enough to prove whether a certain strategy is working. UTM links provide more granular data that allow you to drill down to the specific source of the traffic. You can use the following UTM parameters, which we’ll cover in more detail later:
With that in mind, UTM tracking codes can help you determine:
1. Where the traffic is coming from (Source).
First up, you’ll be able to tell the specific website the traffic is coming from. Examples include:
- Social websites (Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, LinkedIn, etc)
- Search engines (Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc)
- Paid posts and sponsored listings (paid ads, sponsored posts, etc)
- Other websites (your own site, competitor’s sites, publisher’s sites)
2. Which general channel the traffic came from (Medium).
It’s also important to know the general categorization of the source. That way, you can determine whether social media in general is a worthwhile investment, as an example. Organic search, social, CPC, and email are a few mediums you can use.
3. What type of content people clicked on (Content).
What gets the most clicks? An image, a sidebar link, or a menu link? You can tell this information with the content UTM parameter. This is essential for determining whether you need to add more images, for instance, or improve your sidebar link structure if no clicks are coming through that content.
4. Which term they used to access the page (Term).
UTM links can also help you see which terms are driving traffic to a specific page. By using the term parameter, you can determine which keywords are driving the most traffic to you, and which need more love.
Putting it all together, here’s what a UTM-tracked URL can look like:
Now, let’s take a closer look at the definition of UTM tracking and the UTM parameters you can use.
UTM Parameter Examples
UTM codes can track a medium and a source within that medium. Where it gets more flexible is in the language you use to describe that source. Maybe you want to attribute website traffic to a social network, a type of content, or even the exact name of an advertisement on the web.
Here are the five things you can track with UTM codes and why you might track them:
Campaign-based tracking tags group all of the content from one campaign in your analytics. The example UTM code below would help you attribute website traffic to links that were placed as a part of a 20% discount promotion you’re hosting.
A source-based URL parameter can tell you which website is sending you traffic. You could add the example code below to every link you post to your Facebook page, helping you to track all traffic that comes from Facebook.
This type of tracking tag informs you of the medium that your tracked link is featured in. You can use the example UTM code below to track all traffic that comes from social media (as opposed to other mediums, like email).
4. Piece of Content
This type of UTM code is used to track the specific types of content that point to the same destination from a common source and medium.
It’s often used in pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns or with two identical links on the same page, as shown in the sample UTM code below.
Example: utm_content=sidebar_link or utm_content=header_link
A term- or keyword-based tracking code identifies the keywords you’ve paid for in a PPC ad. If you pay for a Google Ads campaign to rank under the keyword, “marketing software,” you might add the following UTM code to the end of the link you submit to Google to run this ad.
The best part about UTM parameters is that you can make any combination you like of these codes — use the bare minimum (campaign, source, and medium) to track all of your links, or use all of them to get super specific about your tracking.
Okay, so you’re on board with UTM codes … but how the heck do you set them up? It’s easy.
Below are instructions for setting up and measuring UTM parameters in Google Analytics and HubSpot.
How to Build UTM Codes in Google Analytics
Here are the steps involved in building UTM codes in Google Analytics.
1. Open Google’s Campaign URL Builder.
There are three different types of tracking tags you can create in Google, two of which help you track traffic to new apps on app marketplaces. You’ll be using the Google Analytics Campaign URL Builder — the third option on this list.
2. Fill in each link attribute in the following form.
Visit the page linked above and click the link to see this URL builder. Then, you’ll see the UTM builder shown below. Add the URL, Campaign, Source, and Medium information into their respective boxes.
3. Use the link in your marketing campaign.
If you’d like to shorten it, you’ll need a tool like bit.ly … or just use HubSpot’s URL Builder if you’re a HubSpot customer.
4. Measure your success.
If you already have Google Analytics set up for your site, Google will automatically track incoming campaigns. Like in HubSpot, you can access them under “Audience,” then “Sources,” then “Campaigns.” Click on each campaign to view the source and medium.
And that’s it — you’ll have custom tracking codes set up and running in no time! In a few weeks, you’ll be able to make a case for what you need because you’ll have the right metrics available.
How to Build UTM Codes in HubSpot
Here’s how you’d go about building UTM codes in HubSpot.
1. Navigate to your Analytics Tools.
In your Marketing Hub dashboard, select “Reports” on the top navigation bar. Then select “Analytics Tools” in the dropdown, as shown below.
2. Open the Tracking URL Builder.
In the menu of analytics tools that appears, look to the very bottom-righthand corner. You’ll see the option, “Tracking URL Builder.” Click this option at the bottom of the page, as shown in the red box below.
3. Open the Tracking URL form to create a new UTM code.
Whenever you create a web campaign that includes at least one UTM code, you’ll see this campaign listed on the page shown below.
This page outlines a tracking tag’s source, medium, term, content, and creation date, which you can see along the bottom of the screenshot below. Click “Create Tracking URL” in the top-righthand corner.
4. Fill in each attribute of your UTM code and click “Create.”
In the form that appears, fill in the URL, Campaign, Source, and Medium fields. If you’d like to add Content and Term, you can do so in the bottom two fields of this form. When you’re done, you’ll see an orange “Create” button become available at the bottom.
Click it, and HubSpot will log your UTM code as a new campaign, and this link will be ready to include on any webpage from which you want to track the traffic.
5. Use the shortened link in your marketing campaign.
6. Measure your success.
You can track your UTM parameters in your Traffic Analytics dashboard under “Other Campaigns,” as shown below. Click on the individual campaign to break down the source and medium.
As you can see in the second image, below, the name of the campaign appears to the left — based on the text in the UTM code you created — with the traffic from people who used each URL to arrive at your campaign’s main webpage.
Now that you know how to set up UTM links, how do you use them? Let’s take a look.
How to Use UTM Links for Your Campaigns
You can use a combination of UTM codes and parameters in a lot of ways. Here’s how you can use them in your day-to-day as a marketer.
1. Track the success of a promotional campaign.
Dropping product prices or launching a new product can be daunting, because if there’s no measurable ROI, it’ll be wasted effort. Luckily, you can tell whether users are effectively arriving to your site from your promotional efforts using UTM codes.
Here’s one example for a product launch:
Or, if you’re running a discount campaign through Instagram influencers, here’s what a UTM link can look like:
2. See how well your social channels promote your content versus when your followers promote your content.
How do your organic social efforts stack up against your followers’ promotional efforts? You can create two UTM campaigns to find out.
For your own posts, you can share a link as follows:
Then, prompt your followers to share the word about you, but let them share the following link:
3. Measure the effectiveness of guest posting referral traffic.
If you’re guest posting on several industry websites, it’s essential to know whether those posts are driving traffic to your site. Guest posting can be a time-consuming, costly endeavor, especially if you’re paying a freelance writer or for a spot on the publication.
Whenever you create a guest post for another publisher, ensure all the links pointing to your website on that post have UTM parameters that tell you where the traffic came from. Here’s one example:
4. Track the same piece of content across multiple marketing channels.
This is probably one of the most useful ways to use UTM tracking codes: Creating different ones for the same piece of content, and using it across different platforms. You can drop the campaign parameter for this use case, and simply track the medium, source, and content.
Let’s say you want to track referral traffic from a video you posted on LinkedIn, YouTube, and Facebook. Here are the three different links you could use:
5. See where most people click on your internal links in a blog post.
Is your internal linking strategy working as intended? You can track where your content gets the most clicks by adding UTM parameters. Here are three examples:
Above the Fold: mywebsite.com/my-content?utm_source=blog&utm_content=above_the_fold
Bottom of the Post:mywebsite.com/my-content?utm_source=blog&utm_content=bottom
Note: Use this strategy with caution, as using too many UTM parameters in internal links can cause confusion to Google. You should use it on a small batch of internal links, collect the clicking patterns, delete the UTM links, and then act on those results for your future internal linking efforts.
As always, ensure that you’ve set a canonical URL for each link to minimize confusion and prevent duplicate indexing.
UTM Tracking Best Practices
UTM tracking URLs are a powerful marketing tool, but to get the most out of them, it’s important to follow some best practices. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:
1. Create consistent UTM tracking codes.
Make sure your URLs and links are consistent, clean, and easy to read. I’d even recommend creating a standard for link tagging, or a UTM parameter guide (kind of like a brand style guide) to ensure consistency across platforms and campaigns.
For example, for monthly newsletters, you might choose to always input the “utm_medium=email” in the medium parameter and use the “utm_campaign=monthly_newsletters” in the campaign parameter.
Then, for all Facebook posts, you would always use “utm_medium=social” in the medium parameter and “utm_source=facebook” in the source parameter. Same for paid ads: You would always opt for “utm_medium=cpc” in the medium parameter and “utm_source=google” in the source parameter.
By using the same UTM parameters for similar campaigns, you can ensure that all data is accurate and easy to analyze when it’s time to calculate your ROI and put together marketing reports. This allows you to make data-driven decisions about which campaigns are most effective.
2. Capitalize your UTM codes carefully, or not at all.
UTM codes are case-sensitive, so stick with either all lowercase or uppercase. Lower case is easier to remember, because that way you don’t have to wonder whether only the first letter or the whole parameter is capitalized.
It’s not just beneficial for remembering your UTM tags easily. Having a standardized way of tagging your links makes it much easier to review and analyze your overall marketing efforts.
Plus, you’ll avoid annoying discrepancies in your website analytics. Inconsistent capitalization can create duplicate entries or split data across different channels, making your data difficult to analyze.
With consistent capitalization, you can more accurately monitor and analyze the performance of your UTM-tagged links, improving reporting across all campaigns and channels.
3. Keep names short but descriptive.
When creating UTM parameters, make the names short but descriptive. That way, your UTM codes are easier to read and remember. They also take up less space in blog posts and social media updates, ultimately making the links look clean, attractive, and professional.
But the most important benefit is that you can avoid any confusion or mix-ups between campaigns with similar names. Clear and concise UTM codes can make it easier to differentiate between similar campaigns, which is especially critical if your team runs a large volume. You really want to be specific with your parameters so your tags clearly state what you’re tracking and where.
For instance, let’s say you’re launching a new ebook as part of an email marketing campaign. A short but descriptive UTM code for this campaign might look like this:
In this example, we have used short, but meaningful names as UTM parameters. You can’t possibly get confused — unless you’re launching two ebooks at the same time. (In which case, you might differentiate your UTM parameters with each book’s name!)
4. Keep a running list of your UTM links in an accessible location.
Creating yet another spreadsheet may make you cringe, but hunting down a wide variety of UTM-tracked links is what’s sure to give you a headache. Keep a list of your UTM links so everyone on your team knows which tagged links currently exist.
I recommend maintaining your list on a cloud-based platform such as Google Sheets (as opposed to keeping it in a local Excel file), then splitting the links by campaign or platform. That way, it’s easier to see all of your links depending on your preferred categorization.
Having a running list will also prevent your team from creating duplicate UTM codes for the same campaign, which can skew your analytics data and create unnecessary confusion. With a running list, everyone on your team will have an easy reference point to ensure they are using correct UTM codes for new campaigns.
You’ll also be able to manage and maintain the codes themselves, which is critical when campaigns are changed or discontinued. In your spreadsheet, you can easily update, modify, or delete UTM tracking codes as needed.
5. Connect UTM tracking codes to your CRM or marketing tool.
Adding your UTM tracking URLs to your CRM or marketing tool is essential. (If you’re not sure of what that can look like, here’s an example of how to do it in HubSpot.) By doing so, you’ll be able to better understand the customer journey, accurately attribute sales and conversions, and make decisions based on data.
Taking this step may feel unnecessary, but linking your UTM codes to your CRM will allow you to better track the customer journey from first-touch to conversion. By tracking which campaigns and channels drive the most website traffic, you gain a better understanding of which of your marketing efforts effectively reach and engage your audience.
As a result, you’ll be able to identify trends, assess performance over time, and make informed decisions based on the success of past campaigns.
Start Creating UTM Tracking URLs
Use the steps, best practices, and tools above to start creating and using UTM tracking URLs so you’re able to track the performance of your marketing campaigns and content. That way, you can reliably boost your metrics and improve the ROI of your digital marketing strategy.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in September 2013 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
The Social Media Content Calendar Template Every Marketer Needs [Free Template]
Have you been on a time crunch to create social media content?
Most of us have and it’s a stressful position to be in. Creating content in the moment it needs to be published is less than ideal for more reasons than you may realize. Not only is your content less likely to meet the needs of your audience, but you’ll also miss out on the creative social topics and events that can be planned for in advance.
In this guide, you’ll get the best social media content calendar template and a step-by-step guide explaining how to use it.
Use the Above Template to Plan Out Your Social Media Posts
Why do I need a social media calendar?
A social media content calendar allows you to keep track of deadlines, better manage your content creation team, and create transparency with stakeholders who rely on your social media publishing schedule.
Creating a great content calendar isn’t as simple as adding a few Instagram post ideas to your Google calendar. Let’s take at the benefits of having a social media calendar.
1. Better Organization
Having a content calendar keeps you and your team organized, which is essential when managing multiple social media channels.
Rather than coming up with content ideas on the fly, you can plan your content around your organization’s needs. It can also provide more time for creating content about trending topics and upcoming holidays and events. For instance, if your company has a big event coming up, a content calendar will help you strategize how to promote it in advance.
Best of all, a social media calendar keeps everyone on your team informed on when content is being published. This will help avoid potential miscommunication and confusion down the road.
2. Easier Scalability
Another benefit to having a social media calendar is that it can help you scale your content production without overwhelming your marketing team.
You can pace the production around your team’s bandwidth and other duties your department is responsible for by planning the content in advance.
As you scale, make sure you track post analytics to see how your content is performing. While there’s no magic number for when or how often you should post on social media, keeping an eye on performance will help you and your team determine what content engages your audience the most.
3. Higher Quality Content
Lastly, using a social media calendar ensures that your team has plenty of time to do their best work.
Planning your posts in advance allows time to double check your work and ensure there are no typos or mistakes. It also enables your team to create a cohesive and consistent brand image because you have more time to strategize and work on valuable campaigns.
Perfecting your social media content calendar doesn’t have to be a chore. With these essential components, you’ll have a foundation to organize your social media strategy at a tactical level.
As you noticed in earlier sections, your stakeholders will appreciate having an easy-to-read key that they can use to understand the information in the calendar.
As long as your key is clear, just about anyone in your organization can view your social media content calendar and understand exactly what’s happening on all platforms.
URLs and UTM Parameters
URLs and UTM parameters are similar, but they’re not one and the same. URLs are the links you’ll want to share from your website (or even another website if you are curating content) on your social media platforms.
On the other hand, a UTM parameter is an extension of your URL. It’s a string of tracking code that’s appended to the end of the URL and it helps social media marketers track how well their posts are driving traffic to their website. By tracking and analyzing UTM parameters, you’ll be able to see what content is meeting your conversion goals and what content is better for engagement on social media platforms.
Date and Time
If you have stakeholders or other teams that rely on your social media content, you’ll quickly see the benefit of including dates and times in your social media calendar.
When teammates can view the calendar and identify exactly when a post was or will be scheduled, they’ll be able to quickly proceed with their workflow which is beneficial for you, too. That means you won’t be interrupted to give status updates about every Tweet on the docket for the day.
Transparency and context are invaluable when it comes to social media content calendars. Giving a brief synopsis of the message or even sharing the caption for a post can go a long way in helping others within and outside your team understand what the intent of the post will be.
Pro tip: If you’re adding a video to your social media content calendar that isn’t finished, consider adding a short Loom video that gives an overview of what the video will be about.
When it comes to tracking, it’s too late to start when the campaign is over. Start tracking your social media campaigns in your content calendar. You can make this prescriptive by having a dropdown list of predetermined campaign names, or if your campaigns are few and far between, simply copy and paste the names next to the corresponding content.
Pro tip: Align your campaign name with the campaign section of your UTM parameter for seamless tracking.
Your social media content calendar will become just another spreadsheet without some imagery. Since much of your social media content will probably be visual, add a thumbnail-sized version of the image that will be included in the published post. Coupled with the message, stakeholders who view the calendar images will have a pretty good idea of what will be shared and when.
To make editing your images for each platform easier, check out this cheat sheet for ideal image dimensions on each platform.
Before creating your social media content calendar, it’s essential to take a step back, look at the big picture, and plan. Here’s how.
Step 1: Identify your goals.
The first step you want to take to build your social media content calendar is to identify your goals. These will determine how often you post, who should be involved in the content creation process, and which channels you’ll want to use.
If you’re not sure where to start with setting up your social media goals, we cover that here.
Step 2: Align your team.
With your goals etched in stone, it’s time to align your team toward these goals. Social media content creation is a tall order, especially for lean marketing teams, so don’t short yourself on resources — especially talent.
One thing we know to be true today is that video content is taking over just about every major social platform. That means you’ll want to have on-camera talent dedicated to producing video content to meet the needs of your social media calendar.
If you can, find a content creator who is well-versed in short-form written content, video content, and audio content to keep your content production moving quickly and prevent bottlenecks.
Step 3: Consider diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging.
Diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging are topics to consider when developing your social calendar. You’ll want to make sure your content reflects and respects the values and experiences of your audience. Moreover, the faces, voices, and stories you share on social networks should be representative of your audience and the larger community where your business operates.
This isn’t something that can happen by accident, so you’ll want to plan for diversity and inclusion as you develop your content calendar. If you’d like some guidance on creating diverse and inclusive content, check out our original research on the topic.
Step 4: Set up UTM tracking.
One of the most important parts of a social media calendar is actually the part you don’t see — analytics and tracking. The easiest way to track how your social media content is performing is to use UTM parameters to track it. “UTM” sounds like a scary acronym, but they’re simple to set up and use.
Once you’ve got them in place for each link on your social media posts, you can review the metrics of your social media content.
Step 5: Create an analysis tracker in your calendar.
For stakeholders who want to stay abreast of how well your social media content is, create a tab that shows clicks, views, engagements, and other metrics you plan to track to deem your content a success. Tracking analytics can be as simple or detailed as your team prefers.
For a full list of metrics to track and tools to do it, take a look at this year’s Ultimate Guide to Social Media Analytics.
To expedite the process of creating a social media content calendar, download this free template that’s ready for you to fill out.
1. Complete a social media audit across all platforms.
The first step before creating a social media content calendar is to complete a social media audit. Which social media platforms are you on? Which platforms are you not on, but your competitors are? Which platforms get the most versus least engagement? Which content formats do you use most often and least often? Which types of posts get the most versus least engagement?
Spend some time perusing your social media analytics to answer these questions. It’s essential to back your conclusions with data and not found them entirely on your gut instinct. We recommend using a social media report template to help you keep track of your findings.
Featured Resource: Social Media Report Template
Doing an audit of your social media presence will allow you to determine how to move forward as you create your social media content calendar. For instance, you may be on TikTok now, but it turns out that’s the platform where you get the least engagement and very few leads. That may mean it’s time to remove TikTok from your lineup and invest more time on a better-fitting platform.
- How to Conduct A Social Media Audit
- How to Conduct a Twitter Audit of Your Account
- The Ultimate Guide to Social Media Analytics
2. Pick the top 3-5 social media platforms you’ll use.
Believe it or not, you don’t need to be on all the social media platforms to get a high social media ROI. In fact, you should choose only the best ones in order to increase your ROI — not only because this will save your team effort and time, but because it will result in a much more manageable social media content calendar.
Every social channel is different and the content you post on each one should appeal to the layout of the platform and the users who use it. Imagine having to post on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok, Pinterest, Tumblr — that is… a lot. Instead, choose the top three to five platforms that, based on your social media audit, yield the highest ROI.
As you choose your platforms, you might also want to pay attention to trends and growing channels. Even if you’re a marketer at a small B2B business, it won’t hurt to test out a platform before all your competitors do.
Featured Resource: Social Media Trends Report
If you’re a seasoned marketer or have a large team, you may find that using all of the popular channels and even experimenting with a new one could be beneficial to the goals you set in step one. However, if you’re a team of one, or your team is already stretched thin, it’s OK to start with a few social channels and work your way up to more.
- The 5 Types of Social Media and Pros & Cons of Each
- Which Social Media Channels See the Most ROI?
- Social Media Platforms Marketers Should Watch
- The Fastest Growing Social Media Platforms
3. Choose your social media content formats and post types.
You’re now armed with the social media platforms you’d like to pursue. But which social media content types will you post? Will you post mainly videos, images, or text-based updates? Will you post informative, relatable, or funny content?
As always, we recommend choosing a mixture of content types to maximize your ROI. Plus, it will ensure that you’re serving content that addresses different segments of your audience while increasing your level of reach.
As you decide on your post types, take into account your team’s resources. If you have dedicated social media managers who can create content in-house, then you can be more ample with your choices. But if you only have a generalist marketer on staff (or if you’re that generalist marketer!), consider what is most realistic in terms of content creation, or ask for a budget to hire a freelance content creator.
4. Create social media content templates, lazy hashtags, and lazy copy.
As you build out your content calendar (hopefully after downloading a free social media content calendar template!), remember that the purpose of your calendar is to make posting as easy and painless as possible. In pursuit of that, take some time to create content templates, list out the hashtags you’ll use most often, and even create “lazy” copy for either you or your coworkers to use.
We recommend storing your templates in an online bank, such as Google Drive or a tool such as Canva, where people can quickly edit a template and adjust it to create a new post. Generally, you want to have various customizable image templates.
Featured Resource: 150+ Content Creation Templates
Don’t forget to keep your most-used hashtags easily accessible for easy copying and pasting, as well as lazy copy that only needs to be customized from post-to-post. As you draft your templates, be sure to keep your brand voice in mind. Whether you’re serious and corporate, or open and friendly, you want every post to embody your company’s branding.
- 150+ Content Creation Templates
- Instagram Templates for Business
- YouTube Templates for Business
- Pinterest Templates for Business
5. Fill in your social media holidays, events, and campaigns.
What is a social media content calendar that doesn’t show your forethought and planning? Well, it’s still a content calendar — just not a very useful one! As you build out your social media content calendar, identify the holidays and events you’ll be participating in, and note any campaigns you may have planned for the future.
If you’re attending an event or a conference, you should plan to broadcast that in your social media channels. Or if you’re doing a virtual event such as a webinar, you should plan a series of posts around that, too. Or if you’d like to create a holiday post or a paid social campaign — the possibilities are endless. You should plan for each upcoming event with at least a month’s advance notice.
Creating all of your other posts is already stressful enough. There’s no need to get stressed about upcoming dates and events that you’re already aware of. And remember: You don’t need to create a campaign for every single holiday.
- Social Media Holidays for Your Content Calendar
- Top Marketing Holidays of the Year, According to Marketer Data
- The Ultimate Guide to Social Media Marketing Campaigns
- Social Media Campaign Ideas to Try
6. Determine a social media posting schedule.
It’s time to get into the most useful part of your content calendar: Determining your posting schedule. Your calendar should have a “Time” column that will allow you to proactively keep track of this information.
Different social media platforms require various posting times. By first creating different tabs for each platform, or color coding posts for different channels, you’ll be able to easily fill in the times you’d like to publish the posts. Consider also syncing publishing times to your calendar so you can get a timely reminder.
Here’s a quick of overview of the best times to post on each platform:
- Instagram: 6 PM – 9 PM, 12 PM – 3 PM, and 3 PM – 6 PM
- Facebook: 6 and 9 PM and 12 PM – 3 PM
- Twitter: 9 AM – 12 PM
- LinkedIn: 9 – 12 PM, 12 – 3 PM, or 3 – 6 PM
- YouTube: 6 PM and 9 PM
- TikTok: 6 to 9 PM, 3 to 6 PM, and 12 to 3 PM
Keep in mind that it’s not uncommon for brands to post daily on platforms like Twitter while posting once a week on LinkedIn may be more than enough to keep that audience engaged.
Take a look at the research for each social media platform you plan to use to get a sense of the posting cadence best practices. Then, compare that to the bandwidth on your team and the goals you want to achieve. Remember: the goal of a social media calendar is to create and publish a sustainable stream of content to your audience — it’s a marathon, not a race.
- The Best Times to Post on Social Media
- How Often to Publish on Social Media for Business
- When Is the Best Time to Post on Instagram?
- Best Times to Post on YouTube
- Best Time to Post on LinkedIn
- When to Post on TikTok
7. Schedule posts using a social media tool.
If you’re publishing updates on a variety of platforms, with different campaigns and holidays, at different times and days, that can quickly get overwhelming. We recommend integrating your social media calendar template with a social media management tool.
That will allow you to schedule posts well in advance of publication, limiting manual work. Paired with the social media templates you’ve already created, you’ll enjoy a much more expedited publishing process, which is especially useful if you’re a generalist or are the sole social media manager in your team.
Try HubSpot’s social media management software for free.
Many tools allow you to cross-post across different social media channels. This can be useful to an extent, but we recommend proceeding with caution: What might work on LinkedIn might not work on Facebook, and vice versa. Since each platform serves a specific audience segment, you want to ensure your posts are personalized for each one.
8. Monitor your social media posts’ success metrics.
Once your social media posting schedule has matured and you have a backlog of posts to analyze, it’s time to delve deeply into your social media metrics and learn what worked, what didn’t work, and what you should change moving forward.
Hopping from platform to platform and looking at their individual analytics dashboards can be a good place to start. But as you continue scaling your marketing efforts, you should consider investing in social media analytics software to compile all of your engagement data for you.Try HubSpot’s social media analytics software for free.
As you analyze your success, try to link it to your company’s bottom line. How many leads did you earn? How many of those leads turned into sales? How much money did you spend on paid social media versus how much revenue did you generate? Here’s a guide on measuring social media marketing ROI to help you answer these questions.
- The Ultimate Guide to Social Media Analytics
- Best Social Media Analytics Tools for Marketers
- How to Create a Social Media Report
Social Media Content Calendar
If you don’t have time to create your social media content calendar from scratch, start with HubSpot’s free social media content calendar template.
The calendar has everything you need to plan your social media content, coordinate campaigns, grow reach and engagement, scale posting schedule, and boost productivity. Download it now, and follow along with the steps below.
Featured Resource: Social Media Content Calendar Template
Our template includes everything you need to scale your social media marketing efforts. You’ll gain access to:
- Social Media Content Schedule: See each of your individual posts and draft individual messages and images for each one.
- Monthly Planning Calendar: See your upcoming social posts for the month in a user-friendly, big-picture format.
- Content Repository: List out all of the content you’ll be sharing with your followers, from blog posts to offers to website pages.
- Platform-Specific Tabs: Plan out your updates for each specific platform, including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and more.
Below, we dive more deeply on how to use the template.
Social Media Content Calendar Template Tutorial
The following subsections will show you how to fill out each of the tabs you see in this template — Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Step 1: Review the Monthly Planning Calendar tab.
The tab Monthly Planning Calendar provides an overall snapshot of your monthly social media campaigns. It’ll help you coordinate with other stakeholders and keep all the moving parts in order. Here’s what it looks like:
There are three sections to take note of when you edit this template. First, the color-coding key. Each color represents a type of content or campaign you might coordinate, like ebooks, webinars, blog posts, product launches, and so on. Though only some of these might be relevant to you, they’re just the beginning of what you may want to include here — so be sure to add and remove categories that align with your own types of content.
The other two sections you’ll need to edit are the Month and Year at the top of the calendar, as well as the cells below each day of the week. In those cells, you should enter the type of content you’ll be promoting that day and color-code it to align with the campaign it’s supporting.
Instead of deleting all the content in this spreadsheet each month, I recommend copying this worksheet twelve times over and creating a separate sheet for each month. (If that gets to be too overwhelming, you can always save those tabs as a separate workbook.)
Step 2: Populate your first social channel in the calendar.
Alright, now let’s get to the social media content part of the calendar. For the sake of this blog post, we’ll use Twitter as an example, but these steps will work for each social channel tab in the template.
Let’s say you want to add some tweets to your scheduling template. Scroll over to the Twitter Updates tab in the content calendar spreadsheet, where you’ll see this:
Day, Date & Time
The first four columns, Day, Date, Time, and Date & Time are there for your convenience, and if you choose to use a third-party app for pre-scheduling your tweets (like HubSpot’s Social Media Management Software), then these columns will be useful. For now, just fill in the date for when you’ll publish updates to Twitter, and the time at which you’d like them to go out. The Date & Time column will automatically change based on what you type in the previous two columns.
Now, let’s move over to the Message column. Here, input the copy you’d like to appear in your tweet, bearing in mind you should cap it at 217 characters to allow enough room for a link. (Read this blog post for a full character count guide.) This spreadsheet will auto-calculate the number of characters you’ve entered to keep you on point, turning yellow and eventually red as you approach 240 characters.
After you’ve composed your tweet, paste the URL you’d like to include in your tweet in the Link column. Be sure to include UTM parameters so you’ll know whether these tweets are driving traffic, leads, and customers. This is an important step to remember if you’d like to demonstrate ROI from social media. You can also use the Campaign column to add an associated campaign which helps with more detailed tracking and reporting.
Finally, in the Image column, attach the tweet’s image (if you have one). For Twitter, we recommend images that are 1200 x 670 pixels.
(Click here for a full cheat sheet of social media image sizes.)
If you’re having trouble attaching your image to the spreadsheet, follow these steps:
Step 1: Click on the cell where you’d like to place your image.
Step 2: Click Insert in the top row, then click the Image button, and finally, click Image in cell to choose your image.
Step 3: In the Insert image window, choose the option your photo will come from. In this example, we uploaded an image from our computer.
Step 4: You’ll now see the image appear in the cell.
Pro Tip: This process is just for organizational purposes. If you decide to upload the spreadsheet to your social media publishing software, it will not attach — you’ll have to do that manually. If you’re a HubSpot customer, details for how to bulk upload your Twitter content to the HubSpot Social Publishing Tool can be found within the downloaded template.
Don’t Forget to Interact With Your Followers
Whether you use this spreadsheet to plan your content or upload it to a third-party app, you’ll still need to supplement these updates with on-the-fly content. Breaking news hits? Whip up a quick update to share it with your network. Did someone in your network tweet something interesting? Give it a retweet with some commentary. Got a fascinating comment on one of your updates? Respond with a “thank you” for their interaction.
Coming up with and scheduling your social media content in advance is a huge time-saver, but it should go without saying that you still need to monitor and add to your social presence throughout the day.
Finally, we encourage you to experiment with your social media publishing. This template provides publishing dates and times for each social network, but you may find those are way too many updates for you to fill, or perhaps too infrequent for your booming social presence. If this is the case, you should adjust your social media publishing frequency as needed.
Now that you’ve got the ins and outs of a social media content calendar, download the one below for free and start planning your content.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in January 2020 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
How to Ask for a Promotion [Expert Tips]
If you’re reading this, you likely want to ask for a promotion but are unsure how to approach the topic. It makes sense because asking for a promotion can be nerve-wracking, but it’s necessary for career growth.
If you want to know how to ask for a promotion, you’ve come to the right blog. Here’s how you can prepare for the conversation beforehand and how to discuss it with your superiors.
How to Ask for a Promotion at Work
When to Ask for a Promotion
Before asking your superiors about a promotion, ask yourself if now is the time. Below are a few cases where it’s most likely time to ask for a promotion.
Your work has positively impacted the business.
All your work in your current position is necessary for pushing the business forward. Still, if you notice your work is making a measurable difference — you could have an excellent case for a promotion.
Keep a log of all your accomplishments, such as revenue-boosting projects or highly successful campaigns. Furthermore, ask your manager if you have any other opportunities to impact the business more.
You’ve taken on more responsibilities.
Look at your job description and assess whether your current responsibilities go beyond the initial scope of your job.
It’s normal for a job’s duties to evolve, but if you notice your position is growing into more of a leadership or management role — it could be time for a promotion.
Discuss with your manager the expectations for your current position and how they can fit into a higher role.
You’re ready to grow within the company.
If you’ve been in your current role for at least a year or two, you may feel ready to move and apply the experience you’ve acquired to a more significant role. It’s common for companies to hire internally to save time and resources.
So, if you notice a position in your company is open and think you’d be a great fit, speak to your manager about the opportunity.
You may have a greater advantage than other candidates due to your experience and familiarity with the company.
How to Ask for a Promotion at Work
Before asking for a promotion, research the skills necessary for the role you wish to assume and try to have early conversations with your manager about your career trajectory.
Once you feel like you’re ready to take your career to the next level with a promotion, keep the following tips in mind:
Consider your relationship with your manager.
If you’re on good terms then you can likely have a candid talk with you manager about your career trajectory.
The best managers are the ones who know how to create or find opportunities that combine your skills, interests, and challenges, so these are some things to outline before the conversation.
However, if your relationship with your boss isn’t so splendid, or they are not in a decision-making position, look higher. Figure out who the best person is to speak with, even if they work in a different department.
Be aware of the promotion process.
Before you can ask, you must check to see if there is a formal process you and your manager must follow when handling promotions. Do you have to be at the company for a specific time?
Is there a particular way you need to communicate about promotions?
If you need to figure out your company’s formal procedure regarding promotion, or if it has one at all, then you need to ask your manager.
If you’re nervous about asking your manager about the formal process before discussing a promotion, career strategist Jennifer Brick says to remember one thing:
“If you’re not having an open and candid conversation with your boss about your career ambition and the fact that you want to get a promotion, you’re not putting them into a position where they’re going to be able to help you get it.”
Brick says your manager will be best poised to give you the support and guidance you need to advance within the company.
“[Having that discussion] will make your life so much easier,” she says. “And it’s going to increase your likelihood of getting the promotion and a pay increase, whether you have a formal process or don’t.”
Approach a promotion as an investment.
“In essence, you are asking the company to invest in you,” says Patrick Barr, owner and managing partner of Barr Performance Coaching.
“Therefore, we need to see it as an investment decision, and therefore we need to think about it as a business case,” he says.
Barr says that while job promotions impact the individual, taking the “personal” and emotions out of the question and approaching the topic from a strictly business stance is essential.
“The first thing you need to think about is your impact on the company,” explains Barr. “What is it that you deliver? What is it that you bring in terms of value to the organization that makes it appropriate for the organization to pay you more?”
Barr also suggests making the decision easy for your boss because your boss still has to make a case to their superiors for why you should get a pay raise or promotion.
“The best way to do that is to write out, very clearly, the improvements you have made over the last 12 months in your role and the improvement you plan to drive in the future,” he said.
Align your promotion with the company’s success.
Career Coach Brittany Hayles of Hayles Consulting agrees with keeping a highlight reel of your progress and achievement within your role to present to your manager when you’re ready for a promotion.
Hayles also suggests highlighting how a promotion benefits the company and your team.
“In addition to talking about those career highlights and how amazing you are, now align it to say, ‘Because I’ve done all these amazing things when I get promoted, it’s going to give me more autonomy to do even more amazing things.”
Hayles says to focus on autonomy.
“A promotion is supposed to lead to more autonomy,” she says. “It’s supposed to lead to the opportunity to have more control over leadership — whether you’re leading more people or leading more processes.”
So, emphasize moments where you took the initiative alone without being told what to do. This will show that you can be trusted to be more autonomous in your next role.
Essentially, you want to keep your manager in the loop of your career aspirations, and you’ll need to pitch your promotion as something that will benefit the company and not just yourself.
To do this, start keeping track of your progress and achievement as soon as possible, so you can make your case that a promotion will bring the company closer to its goals.
And no matter what — be confident! If you want the company to believe in your promotion, you must first believe in yourself.
The 5 Types of Social Media and Pros & Cons of Each (Research)
Marketers commonly use social media to increase brand awareness, generate leads, and improve traffic.
If you’re tasked with starting a social media strategy for your company, you might be wondering which type of platforms you should be on. Your platform choice will likely change based on your audience.
The list of social media platforms is growing, and well-known platforms like Facebook are always evolving and adding new features.
With a greater and greater need for a social presence and an overwhelming amount of platform choices, it can be hard to pick which social channels to use.
You might not want to spread yourself too thin by managing a channel on every imaginable platform, but you also don’t want to miss great brand-awareness opportunities.
To help you make informed decisions about which platforms to use, this post will guide you through some of the core types of social media, examples of platforms within each category, and the pros and cons that each type might present.
By the end, you should have a much clearer idea of what kind of social media strategy will work for your business.
Examples of Major Platforms
- Facebook: 2.9 billion monthly active users
- Twitter: 368 million monthly active users
- LinkedIn: 900.2 million members worldwide
Social networking is possibly the most traditional form of social media.
Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are often called “networking” platforms because they allow user accounts to interact with each other in a variety of different ways.
If you’re a small business, like a restaurant, a platform like Facebook could be a great place to start your social strategy. With Facebook, you can build a business profile that includes links to your website and details about your menu.
Once your profile is all set up, you can post regular updates about your business, “like” other pages, and answer customer post comments or messages. Business profiles also allow other Facebook users to give you reviews.
You can also leverage Facebook’s community feature and set up a community page for customers to ask questions or rave about your products and services.
In fact, we found that businesses that leverage social media communities will see excellent results in the marketing strategy.
According to our State of Social Media Survey, 90% of marketers say building an active online community is crucial to a successful social media strategy in 2023.
This makes sense, considering our Consumer Trends survey found 20% of social media users joined an online community in the past three months, and 22% actively participated in one.
For companies looking to offer a professional service, B2B or publishing companies, LinkedIn is another great way to grow your following. LinkedIn emphasizes career-related networking.
Brands looking to build an audience of professionals from a certain industry can create a business profile there, categorize it with an industry type, and then use posts and messaging to publish updates.
They can also use messaging and comment features to interact with their audiences, or users who comment on their posts.
A Twitter account could be helpful to companies in a wide spectrum of industries, from entertainment to e-commerce. This platform similarly allows you to create a profile where you can list and link company information.
You can then use Twitter to post about company updates, tag companies or customers in posts, retweet positive customer tweets, and respond to customer questions via tweet or direct messages.
Like Facebook, you can also post content like photos or videos.
On all three networks, users can easily communicate with others through simple actions like tagging, hashtagging, commenting, private messaging, reacting to posts, and re-sharing content.
Aside from social interaction, newsfeeds on common social networking platforms are designed to show off a mix of text and visuals, rather than one primary content type.
This flexibility makes social networking platforms easy to begin a social strategy on because you can experiment with different forms of content before branching out to platforms that require more specific content types.
Here’s an example of Facebook’s newsfeed:
For those who want to dabble in video or graphics, these platforms could be a great place to test this new content.
With the growth of video marketing, many have begun to launch more advanced features like Facebook Stories and Twitter’s live streams.
Platforms like Facebook and Twitter have also started to encourage native video and photo uploads more heavily.
Recently, Facebook even adjusted its algorithms to favor live video and image uploads. This has caused these types of native content to gain greater user engagement.
If you’re still not sure where to get started, check out our beginner’s guides for Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Pros and Cons
- Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are some of the most prominently used forms of social media
- Social networking sites often integrate with scheduling tools like HubSpot, Hootsuite, and TweetDeck software
- All platforms have capabilities for photo and video.
- Those interested in just posting links may have a harder time getting engagement than those uploading photo and video.
- Some platforms, like Facebook, put individual user posts higher than business posts in newsfeeds.
Example of Major Platforms
- Pinterest: 450 million monthly active users
One of the biggest platforms that specialize in photo sharing is Pinterest. Pinterest describes itself as a “visual discovery engine” for users looking for cooking, style, home decor, and general visual inspiration.
If you’re wondering why Instagram isn’t mentioned here — don’t worry! We’ll have more on that when we get to the video platforms.
Like the social networking platforms above, Pinterest users on most photo-sharing platforms can interact with others through tags, likes, comments, or direct messages.
Photo-sharing platforms would be helpful to companies like restaurants or stores that want to take photographs, display content, and update followers about their food, goods, or products in a crisp, clean way.
Pinterest is well-suited for ecommerce companies, such as those who sell home goods, and businesses that would like a place to share crisp standalone product images with links.
It similarly offers a photo-based feed with posts that can include a photo and short description. The platform also allows all users to link directly to websites or product landing pages in posts.
One interesting aspect of the platform is that users can heart posts from others, or assign them to a themed “board.” For example, users might make boards centered around topics like “Inspirational Quotes” or “Bedroom products.”
Once a board is created, other users can also follow it. A business could potentially make a board with their own product posts, or find their products on another user’s board.
Here’s an example of what a board looks like:
Before getting started on a platform like Pinterest, you’ll want to determine whether your goal is to gain brand awareness or link-based traffic.
When choosing a platform, you may want to consider your content-related bandwidth. Both require visual imagery, but you might also need to include video creation within your strategy.
Pros and Cons
- These kinds of platforms help with brand awareness. Approximately 80% of Pinterest users say they’ve learned about products or services on the app.
- Pinterest provides an outlet for showing off visual content or product shots.
- Upkeep on these platforms might require a photo budget or dedicated production time.
- Some platforms, require you to post from a mobile app.
Examples of Major Platforms
- YouTube: Over 2.6 billion monthly active users
- Vimeo: 240 million viewers
Roughly 88% of marketers say video gives them a strong ROI and 90% feel the level of video competition has increased.
Adding a video platform to your social strategy could make your brand look relevant and keep you up to speed with your competitors.
Video can be helpful to a wide range of industries. While a restaurant could have a vlog with cooking tips, a technology company might focus its video strategy around product demos.
To help you pin down a strategy that’s right for your industry and service, check out our video marketing guide.
When it comes to long-form video, YouTube is one of the leading platforms.
While YouTube has the bigger audience base and better SEO capabilities, Vimeo’s smaller platform is very community driven.
YouTube also seems to have better opportunities for advertisers and monetization, while Vimeo offers viewers the perk of no pre-roll ads.
For a longer list of similarities and differences, check out this head-to-head piece where we compare the business capabilities of Vimeo and YouTube.
Along with YouTube and Vimeo, the more traditional social networking platforms have also begun to embrace video marketing more aggressively.
In the last few years, Facebook launched Facebook Stories and Facebook Live, and added a tab on their mobile app dedicated to video. Meanwhile, Twitter has allowed users to launch live video streams which are powered by its Periscope software.
Another top contender for video platforms is Instagram. You’re probably thinking, “But isn’t Instagram a photo-sharing app like Pinterest?”
However, to compete with apps like TikTok, Instagram has shifted away from being a photo-sharing app.
In fact, Head of Instagram Adam Mosseri clarified in 2021, “We’re no longer a photo-sharing app or a square photo-sharing app.”
While users can still post photos to Instagram, the platform mainly promotes Reels and video stories. It’s also worth mentioning that Instagram video posts are more than twice as likely to generate engagement than image posts.
Pros and Cons
- Videos can be longer than on other social platforms.
- Both platforms have website linking capabilities.
- Platforms like YouTube and Vimeo often offer analytics.
- Both YouTube and Vimeo have search optimization features.
- Content might take more time and money to create.
- These platforms require more backend tasks like SEO.
Examples of Major Platforms
- Snapchat: 229 daily active users
- TikTok: 100 million monthly active users in the U.S. alone
Apps like Snapchat and TikTok allow users to share photos and videos, they also have a variety of unique interactive and highly experimental features.
These two apps include AR/VR filters, musical overlays, and interactive games. Their audience bases are also prominently Gen-Z.
Because mainly large companies are just starting to experiment with these new applications, marketers who are just beginning a social strategy don’t need to prioritize these interactive apps before traditional social networking platforms.
The large companies on these platforms tend to produce high production-level content. Brands with large followings might also publish Snapchat Stories, or videos that are curated from fans.
Without a high-budget or giant online following, these strategies might be difficult for a company that’s just starting out on social.
Brands and influencers on these apps tend to cater their content to the platforms’ younger audiences. For example, on Snapchat, you might see stories that present beauty tutorials, wellness tips, news, or trendy new products.
If you’re really interested in interactive media, there are still a few viable ways you could get involved with Snapchat or TikTok.
While major brands, like VICE and BuzzFeed have become Snapchat Discover partners, the average business can still create a Snapchat business account that can be searched and friended by users.
This account allows you to send publish temporary stories, just like individual accounts can. However, those with a business account can also purchase ad space.
Here’s a comprehensive video that explains how to use Snapchat:
If you’ve set up an account, check out this guide to getting started on Snapchat.
TikTok, an app based around short, repetitive clips offers five types of advertising options for businesses. While large businesses may find value in all five, smaller businesses may lean more towards “In-Feed Ads.”
These ads are 9-15 second clips that can be skipped by the user.
Guess is one notable brand that has used its account to create trending campaigns with trendy hashtags. Universal Pictures has also had influencers create posts to promote its films.
If you do test out these platforms, you might want to make sure your industry and content fits in with the young age demographic.
You should also try to properly estimate the time and money that might go into keeping these accounts up-to-date and relevant.
If you’re unsure of how short video ads can benefit your business, remember short-form videos have the highest ROI when compared to other video formats.
Furthermore, 54% of social media marketers report using short-form videos like TiKTok videos and IG Reels in their strategy.
Pros and Cons
- These platforms are very creative and experimental.
- They have young audiences, which can help brands better target Gen-Z.
- Stories can be used to give your following a behind-the-scenes look at your brand.
- Producing regular content could be expensive and time-consuming.
- Business accounts aren’t promoted up-front on the Snapchat interface. You may want to promote your channel on your website or other social channels because users will need to search for you with your Snapcode or username.
- Snapchat and TikTok are limited to mobile and aren’t as easy to use.
Examples of Major Platforms
Tumblr and Reddit both allow users to post about interesting niche topics, like memes, events, politics, and pop-culture.
When users publish a post, these platforms allow other users to share them or add to the conversation with their own commentary.
Both blogging and community building platforms could be helpful to those who want to encourage discussion around very niche industries or topics.
For example, on these platforms, you might see discussion about anything from alternative health to machine learning.
By blogging, you can write posts about topics in your company’s industry and link them to your product or site.
While many people have a blog on their website, platforms like Tumblr might be great to use if you haven’t set this feature up — or just want to see what others in your industry are blogging about.
With a discussion site like Reddit, you could share a link or a post about a specific topic on a discussion board related to your industry and see how users respond.
You could also start your own board if a topic you’re looking to encourage discussion on doesn’t have one yet.
These two platforms specifically encourage web chatter and post shares from users that care about the same topics.
Both also allow users to follow you or subscribe to your blogs or Reddit boards so your content could show up on their feeds. Here’s an example of what Reddit’s feed looks like.
When someone publishes something on Reddit, other users can up-vote or down-vote it. Up-voting makes a post show up higher in Reddit feeds while down-voting does the opposite.
On Tumblr, the feeds are organized by time. However, a post can show up higher when it is re-shared by other users. When a user shares or interacts with your Tumblr content, they give it a note.
When they reshare, they have the option to post a comment with the post that gets added to a thread.
Here’s an example of how notes and threads can be used to encourage discussion:
Pros and Cons
- Both platforms allow you to share text posts, photos, and videos about your business, brand, or individual thoughts.
- These platforms enable you to start conversations about a topic.
- Both platforms allow linking to outside websites.
- Longer blog posts might take time to craft or write.
- Getting downvoted on Reddit or no reaction from Tumblr users means your posts may go unseen.
- Your audience might be too niche or limited to just those on the specific platform you use.
A Few Things to Consider
Before you start logging in and setting up your accounts on a bunch of platforms, be sure to consider these factors:
- How much time do you have to devote to strategizing around a social platform?
- Do you have resources for creating graphics or videos?
- Do your goals involve boosting brand awareness, or traffic and revenue?
- Will you need an additional staff member to run this platform, or will it be easy to maintain?
Once you’re on a platform or two, be sure to stay in the know of how it’s changing and what marketers are doing. For a current outlook, check out our Ultimate Guide to Social Media Marketing.
9 Types of Organizational Structure Every Company Should Consider
Choosing the best organizational structure for your company, division, or team is a lot like picking out a new car.
At the most basic level, you’re always looking for something road-worthy — something that can take you (and your passengers) from point A to point B without a hitch.
But beyond that, there are a lot of options to consider. Automatic or manual? Four-wheel drive or two? Built-in GPS? Leather interior? Flux capacitor? (Only if you’re going back in time, of course.)
In the world of organizational structures, the options you have to choose from include things like chain of command (long or short?), span of control (wide or narrow?), and centralization (centralized or decentralized decision-making?), just to name a few.
Organizational structures can use functions, markets, products, geographies, or processes as their guide, and cater to businesses of specific sizes and industries.
What’s the point of an organizational structure? As a business leader, do you even need one? As your company gets bigger, an organizational structure can also be helpful for new employees as they learn who manages what processes at your company.
Then, if you need to pivot or shift your leadership, you can visualize how the workflows would work by adjusting your organizational structure diagrams.
To put it simply, an organizational structure is like a map that simply explains how your company works and how its roles are organized.
Four Basic Elements of Organizational Structure
An organizational structure typically has four essential elements; you can add more building blocks or components, depending on your business needs.
No matter what, ensure you include the following basic elements:
Chain of Command
Your chain of command is how tasks are delegated and work is approved. An org structure allows you to define how many “rungs of the ladder” a particular department or business line should have. In other words, who tells whom to do what? And how are issues, requests, and proposals communicated up and down that ladder?
Departmentation is one of the most important elements of your organizational structure. It clusters your teams by similar roles and responsibilities and allows you to understand how each department connects to one another.
Span of Control
Your span of control can represent two things: who falls under a manager’s, well, management … and which tasks fall under a department’s responsibility. Having a defined span of control not only avoids double-work from your different teams, but helps you identify gaps in your structure.
Centralization describes where decisions are ultimately made. Once you’ve established your chain of command, you’ll need to consider which people and departments have a say in each decision. A business can lean toward centralized, where final decisions are made by just one or two entities; or decentralized, where final decisions are made within the team or department in charge of carrying out that decision.
You might not need an org structure right away, but the more products you develop and people you hire, the harder it’ll be to lead your company without this crucial diagram.
Below, we’ll explore how you can combine those components to form different types of organizational structures. We’ll also highlight the benefits and drawbacks of different structure types so you can evaluate which is the best option for your company, division, or team. Let’s dive in.
Mechanistic vs. Organic Organizational Structures
Organizational structures fall on a spectrum, with “mechanistic” at one end and
“organic” at the other.
Take a look at the diagram below. As you’ll probably be able to tell, the mechanistic structure represents the traditional, top-down approach to organizational structure, whereas the organic structure represents a more collaborative, flexible approach.
Here’s a breakdown of both ends of the structural spectrum, their advantages and disadvantages, and which types of businesses are suited for them.
Mechanistic structures, also called bureaucratic structures, are known for having narrow spans of control, as well as high centralization, specialization, and formalization. They’re also quite rigid in what specific departments are designed and permitted to do for the company.
This organizational structure is much more formal than organic structure, using specific standards and practices to govern every decision the business makes. And while this model does hold staff more accountable for their work, it can become a hindrance to the creativity and agility the organization needs to keep up with random changes in its market.
As daunting and inflexible as mechanistic structure sounds, the chain of command, whether long or short, is always clear under this model. As a company grows, it needs to make sure everyone (and every team) knows what’s expected of them. Teams collaborating with other teams as needed might help get a business off the ground in its early stages, but sustaining that growth — with more people and projects to keep track of — will eventually require some policymaking. In other words, keep mechanistic structure in your back pocket … you never know when you’ll need it.
Organic structures (also known as “flat” structures) are known for their wide spans of control, decentralization, low specialization, and loose departmentalization. What’s that all mean? This model might have multiple teams answering to one person and taking on projects based on their importance and what the team is capable of — rather than what the team is designed to do.
As you can probably tell, this organizational structure is much less formal than mechanistic, and takes a bit of an ad-hoc approach to business needs. This can sometimes make the chain of command, whether long or short, difficult to decipher. And as a result, leaders might give certain projects the green light more quickly but cause confusion in a project’s division of labor.
Nonetheless, the flexibility that an organic structure allows for can be extremely helpful to a business that’s navigating a fast-moving industry, or simply trying to stabilize itself after a rough quarter. It also empowers employees to try new things and develop as professionals, making the organization’s workforce more powerful in the long run. Bottom line? Startups are often perfect for organic structure, since they’re simply trying to gain brand recognition and get their wheels off the ground.
Now, let’s uncover more specific types of organizational structures, most of which fall on the more traditional, mechanistic side of the spectrum.
Depending on the size of a business and its goals, the organizational structure of the team will vary. Each type has its advantages and disadvantages; however, there is a universal benefit to establishing a clear organizational structure. It helps employees understand their role within a company, which enables them to manage expectations and goals.
A business needs to have an organizational structure in place to be successful. There are several types of organizational structures commonly used by companies, nine of which we expand upon below.
1. Functional Organizational Structure
One of the most common types of organizational structures, the functional structure departmentalizes an organization based on common job functions.
An organization with a functional org structure, for instance, would group all of the marketers together in one department, group all of the salespeople together in a separate department, and group all of the customer service people together in a third department.
The functional structure allows for a high degree of specialization for employees, and is easily scalable should the organization grow. Also this structure is mechanistic in nature — which has the potential to inhibit an employee’s growth — putting staff in skill-based departments can still allow them to delve deep into their field and find out what they’re good at.
- Functional structure has the potential to create barriers between different functions — and it can be inefficient if the organization has a variety of different products or target markets.
- The barriers created between departments can also limit peoples’ knowledge of and communication with other departments, especially those that depend on other departments to succeed.
- Functional organization increases efficiency, provides stability, and boosts accountability.
- It also allows departments — with employees who share similar skills and knowledge — to focus on their specialized tasks within their respective fields.
- Because the roles and responsibilities of this organizational structure example rarely change, department employees can consistently work on similar assignments and hone their skills.
The fixed structure of functional organization also operates through management. It provides employees with a chain of command. It guides communication between the team and keeps the team accountable.
2. Product-Based Divisional Structure
A divisional organizational structure is comprised of multiple, smaller functional structures (i.e. each division within a divisional structure can have its own marketing team, its own sales team, and so on). In this case — a product-based divisional structure — each division within the organization is dedicated to a particular product line.
This type of structure is ideal for organizations with multiple products and can help shorten product development cycles. This allows small businesses to go to market with new offerings fast.
- It can be difficult to scale under a product-based divisional structure.
- The organization could end up with duplicate resources as different divisions strive to develop new offerings.
- Companies and their employees can experience the benefits of the product-based divisional structure.
- If one division performs poorly, this does not automatically translate across the organization.
- Because of their separation, divisions may flourish (or fail) concurrently. This system allows companies to mitigate risk.
3. Market-Based Divisional Structure
Another variety of the divisional organizational structure is the market-based structure, wherein the divisions of an organization are based around markets, industries, or customer types.
The market-based structure is ideal for an organization that has products or services that are unique to specific market segments, and is particularly effective if that organization has advanced knowledge of those segments. This organizational structure also keeps the business constantly aware of demand changes among its different audience segments.
- Too much autonomy within each market-based team can lead to divisions developing systems that are incompatible with one another.
- Divisions might also end up inadvertently duplicating activities that other divisions are already handling.
- Because this organizational structure focuses on specific market segments, it provides each division with autonomy.
- The divisions work separately, which allows employees to work independently and enables them to focus on the needs of their particular industry.
4. Geographical Divisional Structure
The geographical organizational structure establishes its divisions based on — you guessed it — geography. More specifically, the divisions of a geographical structure can include territories, regions, or districts.
This type of structure is best-suited to organizations that need to be near sources of supply and/or customers (e.g. for deliveries or for on-site support). It also brings together many forms of business expertise, allowing each geographical division to make decisions from more diverse points of view.
- It can be easy for decision- making to become decentralized, as geographic divisions (which can be hundreds, if not thousands of miles away from corporate headquarters) often have a great deal of autonomy.
- When you have more than one marketing department — one for each region — you run the risk of creating campaigns that compete with (and weaken) other divisions across your digital channels.
- Geographical divisions allow companies the advantage of catering to a specific customer. Based on the differences in language, culture, and customs one would find across the world, companies cannot necessarily expect the same operations to work in different locations.
- Not only does it allow organizations to tailor their approach based on geography, but it allows the division to react quickly and efficiently to any geographical market changes.
5. Process-Based Structure
Process-based organizational structures are designed around the end-to-end flow of different processes, such as “Research & Development,” “Customer Acquisition,” and “Order Fulfillment.” Unlike a strictly functional structure, a process-based structure considers not only the activities employees perform, but also how those different activities interact with one another.
In order to fully understand the diagram below, you need to look at it from left to right: The customer acquisition process can’t start until you have a fully developed product to sell. By the same token, the order fulfillment process can’t start until customers have been acquired and there are product orders to fill.
Process-based organizational structure is ideal for improving the speed and efficiency of a business, and is best-suited for those in rapidly changing industries, as it is easily adaptable.
- Similar to a few other structures on this list, process-based structure can erect barriers between the different process groups.
- It may lead to problems communicating and handing off work to other teams and employees.
- As mentioned, one of the most significant benefits of the process-based structure is that it increases efficiency and speed. If Department B cannot start its processes until Department A finishes, this compels Department A to work promptly and proficiently.
- This organizational model also promotes intradepartmental (within the department) and interdepartmental (across multiple departments) teamwork.
6. Matrix Structure
Unlike the other structures we’ve looked at so far, a matrix organizational structure doesn’t follow the traditional, hierarchical model. Instead, all employees (represented by the green boxes) have dual reporting relationships. Typically, there is a functional reporting line (shown in blue) as well as a product- based reporting line (shown in yellow).
When looking at a matrix structure org chart, solid lines represent strong, direct-reporting relationships, whereas dotted lines indicate that the relationship is secondary, or not as strong. In our example below, it’s clear that functional reporting takes precedence over product-based reporting.
The main appeal of the matrix structure is that it can provide both flexibility and more balanced decision-making (as there are two chains of command instead of just one). Having a single project overseen by more than one business line also creates opportunities for these business lines to share resources and communicate more openly with each other — things they might not otherwise be able to do regularly.
- The primary pitfall of the matrix organizational structure? Complexity. The more layers of approval employees have to go through, the more confused they can be about who they’re supposed to answer to.
- This confusion can ultimately cause frustration over who has authority over which decisions and products — and who’s responsible for those decisions when things go wrong.
- An advantage of a matrix structure is that it promotes collaboration and communication.
- This open line of communication ultimately allows businesses to share resources and allows employees to develop new skills from working with different departments.
7. Circular Structure
While it might appear drastically different from the other organizational structures highlighted in this section, the circular structure still relies on hierarchy, with higher-level employees occupying the inner rings of the circle and lower-level employees occupying the outer rings.
That being said, the leaders or executives in a circular organization aren’t seen as sitting atop the organization, sending directives down the chain of command. Instead, they’re at the center of the organization, spreading their vision outward.
From an ideological perspective, a circular structure is meant to promote communication and the free flow of information between different parts of the organization. Whereas a traditional structure shows different departments or divisions as occupying individual, semi-autonomous branches, the circular structure depicts all divisions as being part of the same whole.
- From a practical perspective, the circular structure can be confusing, especially for new employees.
- Unlike with a more traditional, top-down structure, a circular structure can make it difficult for employees to figure out who they report to and how they’re meant to fit into the organization.
- Most examples of organizational structure have a top-down hierarchy. Alternatively, this type of structure follows an outward flow and contributes to information flowing freely across the business.
- Its benefits include keeping all employees aligned with the processes and goals of the company and encouraging employees to collaborate between departments.
8. Flat Structure
While a more traditional organizational structure might look more like a pyramid — with multiple tiers of supervisors, managers and directors between staff and leadership, the flat structure limits the levels of management so all staff are only a few steps away from leadership. It also might not always take the form or a pyramid, or any shape for that matter. As we mentioned earlier, It’s also a form of the “Organic Structure” we noted above.
This structure is probably one of the most detailed, It’s also thought that employees can be more productive in an environment where there’s less hierarchy-related pressures. This structure might also make staff feel like the managers they do have are more like equals or team members rather than intimidating superiors.
- If there’s a time when teams in a flat organization disagree on something, such as a project, it can be hard to get aligned and back on track without executive decisions from a leader or manager.
- Because of how complicated the structure’s design is, it can be tricky to determine which manager an employee should go to if they need approval or an executive decision for something.
- If you do choose to have a flat organization, you should have a clearly marked tier of management or path that employers can refer to when they run into these scenarios.
- The elimination of middle management employees defines the flat structure type. Its advantages are instantaneous. First, it reduces the expenses of the company.
- Second, it allows staff to build direct relationships with upper management.
- Lastly, it shortens the decision-making process.
9. Network Structure
A network structure is often created when one company works with another to share resources — or if your company has multiple locations with different functions and leadership. You might also use this structure to explain your company workflows if much of your staffing or services is outsourced to freelancers or multiple other businesses.
The structure looks nearly the same as the Divisional Structure, shown above. However, instead of offices, it might list outsourced services or satellite locations outside of the office.
If your company doesn’t do everything under one roof, this is a great way to show employees or stakeholders how outsourcing of off-site processes work. For example, if an employee needs help from a web developer for a blogging project and the company’s web developers are outsourced, the could look at this type of chart and know which office or which person to contact outside of their own work location.
- The shape of the chart can vary based on how many companies or locations you’re working with. If it’s not kept simple and clear, there may be a lot of confusion if multiple offices or freelancers do similar things.
- If you do outsource or have multiple office locations, make sure your org chart clearly states where each specific role and job function lies so someone can easily understand your basic company processes.
- The outsourcing nature of the network structure provides companies with the advantages of lower costs, more focus, and increased flexibility.
- Outsourcing allows organizations to save money, as they don’t have to bear the expense of setting up a department for the same purpose.
- It also gives companies the flexibility to change their processes and the ability to focus on their core functions.
Organizational Structure Examples
Organizational structure can both refer to your company’s structure at large, or your individual teams. No matter what, you usually want to have a different structure for each department, due to the distinct needs and functions of each one.
We’ll start with organizational structure examples for both companies and nonprofits, then delve into team-specific charts.
1. Company Organizational Structure Example: Matrix Type
This matrix organizational structure example for an imaginary engineering company starts with the CEO at the helm. However, instead of including a C-suite (such as a chief marketing officer, a chief finance officer, a chief technology officer, and so on), it includes vice presidents who then oversee individual contributors.
Each contributor works cross-collaboratively with members of others teams on a specific customer project. This is a good example to follow if you run a small-to-medium company in a project-based or region-based firm.
2. Nonprofit Organizational Structure Example: Flat Type
Nonprofits are structured differently than a company, and are usually much smaller and scrappier. In this nonprofit organizational structure example, we see a flat-type of structure, where every employee is only just a few steps away from the director. There are no internal movement opportunities, which works well at most nonprofits. Instead, the focus is on steering the organization to meet its program goals.
Notice that the leader is not the director, but rather the board, who interfaces directly with the director to relay organizational decisions.
3. Marketing Organizational Structure Example: Functional Type
A marketing team’s organizational structure will vary depending on the size of a company. In this example, we see a functional structure type, where the teams are split based on job function. Here, the marketing team is headed by a chief marketing officer (CMO), who overlooks smaller departments divided into six functions: Social media, content, product, SEO, website, and acquisition.
Your marketing team, however, can also adopt a matrix organizational structure if you laterally divide your individual contributors and managers based on region, country, project, or another factor.
4. Sales Organizational Structure Example: Functional Type
In many sales organizations, organizational structures are deeply hierarchical, where a vice president of sales overlooks a director of sales, and then the director of sales overlooks a team of sales managers, and the sales managers overlook a team of sales representatives, and so on.
In this example of a sales organizational structure, roles are not as hierarchically structured, and instead divided based on function. The VP of sales overlooks a varied team, which includes a director of sales, a sales development manager, a director of revenue operations, a sales enablement manager, and an account enablement manager.
While these are each at different stages of their careers, they are all at the same level and are responsible for a specific function within the team.
5. IT Organizational Structure Example: Functional Type
This is another functional org chart example, but this time, it’s for IT. In this example from the University of Michigan, the IT department is divided based on function. Overseen by a Chief Technology Officer, three directors supervise security, infrastructure, and operations; applications; and institutional research and effectiveness.
Within each team is a specialization. For instance, the director of applications oversees both the application team and the CRM team. If you run an IT org, you can take a similar approach, or divide your leadership based on specific processes, such as system maintenance or IT services.
6. Product Organizational Structure Example: Divisional Type
For product organizations, the most common organizational structure is divisional, where teams are divided based on the product they’re working on. Within each product team, there’s typically a product manager, an engineer, a marketer, and even a customer support manager. Depending on how big or small your company is, you may have multiple product managers for one product.
Conversely, if there’s only one product, then the entire company may be a product organization. This time, the organization would be structured based on process, like the example below.
In the above example, the company is divided by processes such as product management, sales and marketing, product development, service and support, and operations. This is a good example to follow if your company is small.
7. HR Organizational Structure Example: Matrix Type
This HR organizational chart is an excellent example of the matrix structure type. Here, the VP of HR oversees three different regions, all of which have an HRBP, two recruiters, and one trainer. Horizontally, the HRBPs, recruiters, and trainers are all aligned.
This is an excellent example to follow if your company is a large enterprise with hiring operations in different regions. It’s especially useful if there are different hiring laws in each region where you operate.
Organizational Structure: Things to Know
What is an organizational structure chart?
An organizational structure chart is a diagram that shows your departments, starting from C-Suite leaders to individual contributors, as well as your company’s order of command and decision-making flow.
Why is having an organizational structure important?
Imagine a business that has no organizational structure. Instantly, questions arise about the systems and processes. Who makes the decisions? How are employees held accountable? What are the company’s goals? These questions are practically impossible to answer without a functional organizational structure.
Organizational structure is necessary for running a successful business because it improves workflow and efficiency, promotes communication, identifies company needs, and aligns employees with company goals. It directly affects how a business operates daily. When a company establishes a structure that works, the combined efforts of its employees, in conjunction with its systems and processes, allow the company to make better decisions for its future.
What is the best organizational structure?
The best organizational structure varies from business to business and largely depends on your team size, company type, and product offerings. That said, a functional organizational structure (also named “traditional line organizational structure” or “hierarchical structure”) is an excellent place to start if you’re not sure which org structure is right for you.
What are the four basic forms of organizational structure?
The four basic forms of organizational structure are functional, divisional, matrix, and flat structures.
Functional organizational structures divide your company teams based on job functions and responsibilities.
Divisional organizational structures groups your teams based on products, markets, or regions, with smaller organizational structures for each division of your business.
Matrix organizational structures divide your company teams in a grid-based fashion, where every team has dual reporting relationships with the C-Suite and another team.
A flat organizational structure keeps hierarchy to a minimum by eliminating middle management and keeping individual contributors as close as possible to leadership.
How do businesses determine organizational structure?
Businesses determine organizational structure by taking stock of their current workforce and teams, then carefully aligning their company strategy, employee feedback, and leadership goals with a specific structure.
Some companies may have naturally fallen into a functional org structure, in which case it’s only a matter of creating an org diagram. Others may be in the process of creating one. Here are the steps to determine an org structure from scratch:
- Audit your organization’s teams and roles. First, it’s essential to understand which teams and roles already exist within your business. If your business is new, create a list of planned teams and hires.
- Draft a company strategy. Your org structure should support your strategy, not detract from it. If your strategy is to launch X new products in the market, then a product-based divisional structure might work well for you.
- Gather feedback from existing employees. Your existing employees are a gold mine of information when creating an organizational structure. Some employees might want to be closer to leadership; others might want advancement opportunities. For the first, a flat structure would fit, and for the second, a functional structure would be best.
- Gather feedback from other leaders. Just as employees’ voices matter, so, too, do leaders’ voices matter. Understand their key goals and the support they need to do their best work at your firm.
- Align your company strategy, employee feedback, and leadership feedback with an org structure. Take a look at organizational structure types and try to align them with the data and observations you’ve collected. Sometimes, the decision will be clear; other times, you’ll need to continue interviewing and gathering data to find the best structure for you.
- Create an org chart. Now that you’ve chosen the right org structure, it’s time to create a visual chart that shows your company’s chain of command, departmentation, span of control, and centralization at a minimum. Share this chart over email and be sure to keep it in an easy place for all employees to access.
Navigating Organizational Structures
Organizational structures are central to a successful team. Employees can move comfortably, confidently, and efficiently when given a clear definition of their role within an organization.
Structure types will vary from business to business, so it’s important to remember that these structures are not one size fits all. Every type may not suit your organization, but chances are, one of them will. Use this post to determine which organizational structure works for you, and then it’s time for the real work to begin.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in December 2014 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
1 In 3 Marketers Say the Recession Will Surpass COVID’s Marketing Impacts: 3 Data Points to Know
The COVID-19 era was notoriously a rollercoaster for marketers, who had to pivot their strategies constantly as the world changed.
As if one unprecedented event wasn’t enough, marketers are now faced with a looming recession that’s already having major impacts on their industry.
Will the recession shake things up as much as COVID-19 did?
While we can’t truly predict the future, one-third of marketers think a recession will have an even bigger impact on their marketing activities than the pandemic, while another 33% say it will be about the same.
While you should still take the data above with a grain of salt as it is just one of many studies and the economy is always quickly evolving, here are three things you need to know to prepare for whatever the coming months bring:
1. Most Marketer Say the Recession Is Here
While the world debates whether the recession is looming or arrived months ago, 78% of marketers say we’re already living in it.
Marketers are already seeing budget cuts, hiring freezes, and other unpleasant effects. At the same time, their plans and goals for 2023 are constantly being adjusted as the economic situation progresses.
For a deeper dive into the macroeconomic reasons marketers are being hit so hard, check out our blog post on how the recession is already impacting marketers.
2. 67% of marketers expect an economic slowdown for more than six months:
Not only is it already here, but our survey shows that marketers aren’t expecting the recession to end anytime soon. As one marketer put it:
“Between COVID-19 uncertainty, high prices due to inflation, supply chain and venue availability issues, people are hesitant to plan large events for the next 12 months. I expect that will continue at least for another year or until there is some sense of stability in the market.”
3. Some marketing channels are losing effectiveness, requiring more spend.
Being expected to make a huge impact with a small budget is nothing new for marketers. But what happens when your usual marketing channels aren’t as effective as they used to be?
According to a marketer in our survey, “we’re needing to spend more to get similar results from 6 months ago.” Meanwhile, 37% of marketers have already seen budget cuts.
We asked industry leaders for the most effective marketing strategies to cut costs in their marketing budgets. These made the top of the list:
At #1, tapping into earned media is a great (and free) opportunity to expand your reach and cut your budget. Also tied for first is leveraging automation and AI.
Thirdly, finding new or emerging marketing opportunities can also be huge. For example, embracing BeReal, a new social media platform popular among Gen Z, is completely free. Being among the first brands to hop on the trend presents a massive opportunity.
For more insights on how marketing leaders are planning to navigate these times, see our full report here.
We plan on surveying marketers throughout 2023 to keep tabs on how the recession is impacting them as responsive as possible.
Whether the recession ends up milder than expected or continues to cause challenges, we’ll keep you posted and give you the tips you need to succeed in difficult times.
To learn more about the overarching opportunities, challenges, and trends in marketing today, check out our free State of Marketing Report below.
650+ Best Instagram Captions for 2023: Good, Cool, Funny, & Cute
Finding a good Instagram caption is a challenge, especially if you run the Instagram profile of a business. Why? Because if you want to build a consistent brand on Instagram, it’s important to maintain a distinctive voice on every post, video, or reel. That’s harder than it sounds.
If you’re tired of writing captions from scratch, there’s no need to keep searching. We’ve compiled the best Instagram captions for every type of brand and for every type of post.
Whether you want to sound cool, make a funny quip, or come across as cute, you can incorporate many of these captions into an Instagram business strategy. Just make sure your audience would find your caption funny, clever, or the right amount of sassy.
Click one of the following links to jump through some of our best IG captions:
Next time you’re contemplating a witty line of text to go with your Instagram photo, take a look at our complete list of captions that suit any mood or occasion you’ll be sharing with the world. You can also customize these captions to make them perfect for your feed. First, we recommend saving some time by downloading our kit of additional IG caption examples, which you can use to inspire your caption creation process.
Instagram Captions for Business
Your Instagram business account is one of the best places to showcase your brand personality while still delivering business updates in an engaging way. You can use the captions below for most social media content ideas, but feel free to customize them depending on your specific post.
Skip to the list of Instagram captions you’re most interested in:
- Business Instagram Captions
- Small Business Captions
- Coming Soon Captions for Instagram
- Catchy Instagram Captions for Business
- Business Meeting Captions for Instagram
- Quote Instagram Captions
Business Instagram Captions
If you’re running a business account, you should use your captioning to humanize your business more than your average paid ad.
Your business Instagram captions are an opportunity to give your brand some personality while getting the word out about your product or service offering. Here are some of our go-to captions that prospects and customers will love.
Good evening, [city]! We’re in town for [event] at Booth [#]. Stop by and say hi!
“If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat. Just get on.” -Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook
Our [#]-person squad completed the [road race name]! And we did it all for the post-run sneaker selfie. 👟
We got product in the pipeline … check back for an exciting announcement on [date]!
Diversity isn’t a recruitment metric — it’s an ingredient for success. At [company], we thrive on the unique backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives of our people.
Spot the CEO. 😉
At [company name], our best asset is our people.
We had a great time with our customers at [meeting/event]! @[client/partner], you guys rock.
Thrilled to have [customer] at our office today! Come back any time. 😊
[Company name] is off for [holiday]! We hope you all have a safe long weekend.
Big things have small beginnings. [Company]’s HQ began right here.
“It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.” –Herman Melville
How many [company name] employees does it take to spell “TEAM”?
Want to work with these awesome people, working on a lot of awesome things? We’re hiring! Click the link in our bio to see our current openings.
Check, check, one, two … is this thing on? [Company name] is now on Instagram! Follow us to learn about our culture, product, and (awesome) people.
Tired of [customer pain point]? We’ve got good news. Click the link in our bio to learn about [product]’s latest feature.
[Company] presents our latest product — made with love just for you. ❤️ Link in bio to learn more.
Stop wasting time with [customer pain point]. Our [product] will help you achieve [X] more efficiently — just ask our current customers. Check out our latest case study here: [Link]
Handmade in [location] and delivered to your door. That’s the [Company] promise.
When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade. When [company name] gives you [type of product], you make money.
Small Business Captions
Running a small business? You can use a friendlier, more personable tone in your Instagram posts, emphasizing your products’ better quality and advertising the benefits of purchasing from local or small businesses. We love the captions below for businesses that focus on handmade or locally sourced products.
“Made with love and care in [city]. Order yours online.”
“Every order and customer means the world to us — thank you for your support!”
“The best things start small and simple. Learn about our process at the link in bio.”
“We put our heart and soul into every product we create, and we hope you can taste the difference.”
“Join our revolution — we promise it’s worth the buzz.”
“Shop small, save big.”
“Passion fuels our business, creativity drives our journey.”
“Small business, big heart.”
“From our small business to your doorstep, delivered with ♥.”
“Shop small, support your local economy.”
“Shop local, feel good.”
“Quality > quantity.”
“Treat yourself with a [product/service] made just for you.”
“Create connections and spread joy. Come in today to experience the [business name] difference.”
Coming Soon Captions for Instagram
If you have something new coming down the line, why not generate some buzz with a series of Instagram posts? Here are some captions to get the conversation going and increase anticipation for new products, releases, or business expansions.
“Mark your calendars. Something amazing is coming your way on [date].”
“The countdown is on.”
“Stay tuned for something special.”
“Join us on our mission to make a difference starting from [date].”
“You won’t want to miss this. We partnered with [company] to bring you the latest in [industry].”
“Get ready to meet our latest creation.”
“The wait is almost over. Launching on [date].”
“We’ve got something incredible in the works, and we can’t wait to share more with you.”
“No need for binoculars. Something big is on the horizon.”
10.”We’re brewing up something exciting, and we can’t wait for you to be a part of it.”
“Something special is in the works — can you guess what it is?”
“We’ve been keeping a little secret from you… Stay tuned.”
“A new adventure is about to begin. New [city] location opening on [date].”
“Keep your eyes peeled for our big announcement on [date].”
“Can’t wait to share our latest project with you. Sign up on our website for updates.”
Catchy Instagram Captions for Business
Showcase your brand personality a little more with a catchy caption or saying. A catchy caption can convey your brand ethos, your entrepreneurial spirit, or your company values. The below options can effectively be used for business updates or news.
“We’re here to make a difference, not just a profit.”
“No matter how small, every success counts.”
“Good things come to those who hustle.”
“Expect the unexpected.”
“Small business, big heart.”
“Keeping it simple with our latest launch.”
“Service is not just a transaction, it’s an experience.”
“It’s never too late to start — just do it.”
“Believe in your dreams, and the rest will fall into place.”
“Make waves in your business, or get lost in the sea of competition.”
“Whatever you do, do it with all your heart.”
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it’s the courage to continue that counts.”
“Creating experiences, one [product] at a time.”
“Small things can make a big difference in a business.”
“Find your happy place here.”
Business Meeting Captions for Instagram
Feel like a business meeting isn’t Instagram-worthy? Think again. Not only can posting about your meeting show your company culture, but it can also show your followers that you’re hard at work trying to make better products and services for them. Here are a few of our favorite business meeting captions that you can customize.
“Generating our next big idea with the brightest minds we know. P.S. We’re hiring!”
“When we come together, we achieve great things.”
“Collaboration is the key to success.”
“The only way to do great work is to love what you do.”
“Meetings that matter, for a purpose that counts.”
“In the right company, your ideas will flourish.”
“Everything is possible when you have the right people in the room.”
“There’s no substitute for hard work and determination.”
“When passion meets purpose, great things happen.”
“We believe there are no bad ideas. We love facing challenges head-on.”
“The best ideas come to life in a room full of great minds.”
“Surround yourself with positive people who lift you higher.”
“We may have different perspectives, but we’re working towards a common goal.”
“Even a ten-minute business meeting can be the key to unlocking limitless possibilities.”
“We work hard, we play hard, and we achieve great things together.”
Quote Instagram Captions
If you can’t find the words yourself, there’s a quote out there to help you convey that idea.
Using quotes for your Instagram caption is a great way to evoke and share your emotions. Quotes can propel people to think more open-mindedly, and optimistically — or even motivate them to do something great. Below is a list of some of our favorites.
“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” –Nelson Mandela
“Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else.” -Margaret Mead
“You change the world by being yourself.” -Yoko Ono
“In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” -Abraham Lincoln
“What I know for sure is that speaking your truth is the most powerful tool we all have.” – Oprah Winfrey
“The purpose of our lives is to be happy.” -Dalai Lama
“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.” -Mae West
“Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson
“I would rather die of passion than of boredom.” -Vincent van Gogh
“Success isn’t about the end result, it’s about what you learn along the way.” -Vera Wang
“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” -Confucius
“Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.” -George Addair
“You become what you believe.” -Oprah Winfrey
“Believe you can and you’re halfway there.” -Theodore Roosevelt
“The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” -Walt Disney
“Love the life you live. Live the life you love.” -Bob Marley
“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.” -Maya Angelou
“Embrace what makes you unique, even if it makes others uncomfortable.” – Janelle Monae
“Success is a collection of problems solved.” – I.M. Pei
“To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself.” -Thich Nhat Hanh
“In a gentle way, you can shake the world.” -Gandhi
“I dream. Sometimes I think that’s the only right thing to do.” -Haruki Murakami
“We become what we think about.” -Earl Nightingale
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” –Winston Churchill
“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” -C.S. Lewis
“If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.” -Lao Tzu
“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.” -Albert Einstein
“If you are working on something that you really care about, you don’t have to be pushed. The vision pulls you.” -Steve Jobs
“Security is mostly a superstition. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” – Helen Keller
“Stay true to yourself and never let what somebody else says distract you from your goals.” -Michelle Obama
Personal Captions for Instagram
If you’re looking for Instagram captions for your personal Instagram profile, we’ve got you covered. The good news? The captions below are also a great option for businesses with a more casual or personable brand voice.
Skip to the Instagram captions you’re most interested in:
- Short Instagram Captions
- Funny Instagram Captions
- Clever Instagram Captions
- Cute Instagram Captions
- Wedding Instagram Captions
- Couple Instagram Captions
- Friends Instagram Captions
- Sassy Instagram Captions
- Song Lyrics for Instagram Captions
- Holiday Instagram Captions
- Seasonal Instagram Captions
- Selfie Instagram Captions
- Baddie Instagram Captions
- Travel & Vacation Instagram Captions
- Beach Instagram Captions
- Birthday Instagram Captions
- Prom Instagram Captions
- Graduation Instagram Captions
- Food Instagram Captions
- Pet & Dog Instagram Captions
Short Instagram Captions
A picture is already worth a thousand words — there’s no need to go on and on in your captions. Let the photo or video speak for itself and keep it brief. Take the captions below and change them to suit your exact post. It may be enough to tag someone who’s in the photo, give credit if you’re reposting, or prompt people to check out your bio.
This week’s photo dump.
Photo dump sacrifice for the algorithm god.
More info in bio.
Link in bio.
Sneak peek →
[Product] in production at our factories.
@[account] x @[account]. Coming soon.
[The most dominant color in your post, ie “Red,” “Blue,” etc]
[Hashtag relevant to your post]
[Emoji relevant to your post]
[Relevant word 1] + [Relevant word 2]
Happy [weekday]! [hashtag]
Happy [holiday of the day]! [hashtag]
You can find me at [place you most often frequent].
In [place where the photo was taken].
An ode to [item in the image or video].
Thinking about [relevant word].
2:38 pm. [Or time when the photo was taken]
From the archives.
Couldn’t pick one.
That’s all for now.
I can’t. I simply cannot. [Emoji]
My favorite hour.
Taking it slow.
Once upon a time…
We/I/You/@[account] know(s) what’s up.
The only thing stopping you is you.
Good food, good mood.
And the boredom award goes to…
My life, my rules. At least 62% of the time.
We’re all still healing.
Be the type of person you want to meet.
It starts with you.
Call it what you want.
I’ve never been a fan of change, but I’d follow you anywhere.
Funny Instagram Captions
We don’t always have to take social media so seriously, so explore some funny Instagram captions for your upcoming posts.
Instagram can be a tool to convey aesthetic picture taking or stoic model shoots, it can also be a fun place to share a laugh or lighthearted content, too. Sharing a funny caption can boost your page’s personality, and potentially brighten someone else’s day. We hope the following captions make you crack a smile.
Glitch in the matrix.
My favorite exercise is a cross between a lunge and a crunch … I call it lunch.
I need a six-month holiday, twice a year.
We tried to be normal once. Worst two minutes of our lives!
There are 16-year-olds competing at the Olympics and some of us (me) still push on “pull” doors.
That awkward moment when you’re wearing Nike’s and you can’t do it.
I’m just a girl, standing in front of a salad, asking it to be a cupcake.
What if we told you … you can eat without posting it on Instagram?
I know the voices in my head aren’t real, but sometimes their ideas are just too good to ignore.
We don’t know what’s tighter: Our jeans or our company culture.
Friday … Our second-favorite F word.
We don’t care what people think of us. Unless they’re our customers. We definitely care what customers think of us.
All you need is love … and investors. All you need is love and investors.
Hi, we’re [company name]. We build amazing apps and eat amazing apps.
They say “Do what you love and money will come to you.” Let’s see what happens, I just ordered tamales.
My favorite subject in school was recess.
No thoughts brain empty just tacos and cats.
[Food item] so good it’s got me weak in the knees.
The best part about waking up is going to sleep eighteen hours later.
For legal reasons, this is not a joke.
The older you get, the better you get, unless you’re a banana.
Bring the alcohol! Because no great story started with someone eating a salad.
Don’t worry if plan A fails. There are 25 more letters in the alphabet.
If you’re not supposed to eat at night, why is there a light bulb in the refrigerator?
First rule of Sundays: If you can’t reach it from your couch, you don’t need it.
If you fall, I will be there. Signed, Floor.
The first thing I do after coming to work is logging off.
I used to think I was indecisive, but now I am not so sure.
Friends buy you lunch. Best friends eat your lunch.
Darn it, just accidentally had another thought again.
My goal this weekend is to move… just enough so people don’t think I’m dead.
You think nothing is impossible? Try getting me out of bed before 12 PM.
Looking at these pictures won’t fix all your problems, but it’s a good start.
My sauce is too hot that’s why you’ll never ketchup.
Google Maps said it’s MY TURN.
I got my haters seasick, they see me and get sick.
If there would be an award for being lazy, I would send someone to pick it up for me.
Clever Instagram Captions
Trying to come up with some clever IG captions on your own can be a lot of work, so we’ve done it for you. Below we’ve compiled a list of our favorite clever Instagram captions for all your witty caption needs.
Patience — what you have when there are too many witnesses.
Maybe she’s born with it, maybe it’s the Clarendon filter.
“Life is short.” False — it’s the longest thing you do.
Happy Sunday! There may be no excuse for laziness, but I’m still looking.
Rejection is just redirection.
Better an “oops” than a “what if.”
Anyone looking for a heart? Selling mine for $2. (Used, good condition)
The world is changed by your example, not your opinion.
Seven billion smiles and these are my favorite.
Stop working hard and start working smart.
I found your nose. It was in my business.
Imposter complex is just a byproduct of success.
Life is simple. It’s just not easy.
There’s a big difference between being alive and living.
The best times begin at the end of your comfort zone. So you can catch me on the opposite end of the end of my comfort zone.
When nothing goes right, go left.
“Success is making those who believed in you look brilliant.” -Dharmesh Shah
“If you can’t convince them, confuse them.” -Harry Truman
The world changes by your example, not your opinion. So get acting right.
It’s always a good idea to be on the right side of history.
When you learn, teach. When you get, give.
Don’t quit your daydream.
Legend has it that if you look hard enough you’ll see the weekend approaching!
It’s time to make new memories. But first, five tequila shots.
I’m on a seafood diet. I see food, I eat it.
Sorry I didn’t get back to your text. I was too busy converting oxygen into CO2.
Living on Earth is expensive, but it does include a free trip around the sun.
“Arguing with a fool proves there are two.” -Doris M. Smith
Well, enough about me. Let’s talk about you. What do you think about me?
We’re all one more minute closer to dying. What’s one more shot going to do?
There’s a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. If you find it, let me know so I can get some.
Cute Instagram Captions
If there’s one thing people on the internet love to see — it’s anything and everything that falls into the category of cute. Whether you’re posting your adorable pet, your significant other, or a picnic by the park, we’ve got all the cute Instagram captions that you need to complement them.
Through all seasons and through all time.
Don’t give up on your dreams. Keep sleeping.
My fave sound is you snoring next to me.
Here’s to a hundred more years with you.
Happiness is watching you do what you love 💗 Hopefully that’s me.
I like you more than [food]. And I looove [food].
Wearing a onesie to bed just in case my SO steals the covers again.
Cuddle time with the pup 💞
Just showing off my [item] a little. Be jealous.
Always wear cute pajamas to bed; you never know who you’ll meet in your dreams.
You got me like 🥴️
I’d move to [state] for you. And I hate [state].
I have no idea what I was doing before you came around. Sleeping, probably.
No one can touch my books or my tacos 😤
Not me standing there like🧍
Don’t mind me while I drink my tea 🍵
Did someone say [something you like]? 🏃💨
They say elephants have a perfect memory. So do I when it comes to you.
My pup is the salsa to my whole enchilada.
I hate it when I’m singing a song and the artist gets the words wrong.
Being an adult is like folding a fitted sheet. No one really knows how.
Here’s a🥇for being the cutest human to walk this earth.
Me before you:🌱 Me after you: 🌻
Just got that Friday feeling.
Are you a timekeeper? ‘Cause time slows down when I’m with you.
I can’t see heaven being much better than this.
I’m not lazy, I’m on energy-saving mode.
My pillow is my best friend (sorry, [best friend’s name])
A day doing [activity] is a day well-spent.
I don’t know who’s cuter, me or my reflection?
Being a full-time angel is so exhausting.
With you, everything is twice the fun and half the trouble.
Sweeter than a cupcake.
Put me on your wishlist.
Wedding Instagram Captions
If you’re getting married, congratulations! Now, it’s time to post your gorgeous wedding photos, but what do you put in the caption? Here are a few ideas to help you get started.
“The start of forever.”
“Worth the wait.”
“Finally found my happily ever after.”
“You’re my best friend — here’s to many, many more years.”
“I never want to stop making memories with you.”
“I promise to love, honor, and cherish you forever.”
“I never knew true happiness until I met you.”
“Forever and always, I choose you.”
“Life is an adventure, and I can’t wait to embark on this one with you.”
“And so the adventure begins…”
“Together is a wonderful place to be.”
“Today I marry my soulmate, my partner in life, and my best friend.”
“From this moment on, everything changes.”
“All I need is you (and some cake). Here’s to forever.”
Couple Instagram Captions
If you’ve yet to tie the knot with your partner, you should still share all the love. Here are some of our favorite couple Instagram captions to pair with the perfect picture.
“Forever and always.”
“Together we make the perfect team.”
“Two hearts. One tray of tacos.”
“I never want to stop making memories with you.”
“You stole my heart, but I’ll let you keep it.”
“You’re my favorite notification.”
“The good things in life are even better with you.”
“Billions of humans and you’re my favorite.”
“Some things just get better with age. Like us.”
“It’s not about finding the person you can live with, it’s about finding the person you can’t live without.”
“The exception to every rule.”
“After all these years, it’s still you.”
“I don’t need a filter when I’m with you.”
“Tried and true.”
Friends Instagram Captions
Posting a photo or reel with friends? Pair it with the perfect caption to express your love for your closest confidantes.
“Good friends, great memories.”
“Friends who laugh together, stay together.”
“Friendship isn’t a big thing, it’s a million little things.”
“In the cookie of life, friends are the chocolate chips.”
“My sunshine on a rainy day.”
“Friends are the family we choose for ourselves.”
“Laughter is the sound of friendship.”
“Together we can conquer anything.”
“The three musketeers.”
“Sun? What sun? You guys make every day a little brighter.”
“You bring out the best in me. 💞”
“Making life a little sweeter with my girls.”
“Like we were never apart.”
Sassy Instagram Captions
Your Instagram posts are your way to express yourself, so if you’re bold, sassy, and not afraid to show it — let your caption do the talking.
For those that want to give their Instagram posts some more pizzazz, try throwing in one of these sassy captions.
Alexa, let them know I don’t give a —
What’s a queen without her king? Historically speaking, more powerful.
Be a little more you, and a lot less them.
We’re an acquired taste. If you don’t like us, acquire some taste.
Well-behaved people don’t make it into history books.
Be sunshine mixed with a little hurricane.
We got 99 problems, but an awesome marketing team ain’t one.
Sometimes you just need to do a thing called “what you want.”
You can’t do epic stuff with bad people. And we got the best in the biz.
It’s not called being bossy, it’s called having leadership skills.
You did not wake up today to be mediocre.
You’re italic, I’m in bold.
A bad attitude is like a flat tire. You can’t go anywhere until you change it.
We’re entrepreneurs. They call us dreamers, but we’re the ones who never sleep.
All of us have the capacity to light up a room. Some when they enter, others when they leave it.
Brains are awesome. I wish everybody would have one.
Common sense is like deodorant. The people who need it most never use it.
You see that? That’s my patience leaving.
I’ll have you know, I’ve completed plenty of marathons. [Show 1], [Show 2], and [Show 3], to name a few.
Everyone has that one annoying friend. If you don’t have one, then it’s probably you.
Above: A photo of me pretending to be listening.
Oh, you sent me an email? Expect a response in approximately never.
Everyone is entitled to be stupid, but some abuse the privilege.
If you like me, raise your hand. If not, then raise your standard.
If you don’t succeed the first time, then burn all the evidence you tried.
Underestimate me. That’ll be fun.
I like my coffee how I like myself: Dark, bitter and too hot for you.
We move regardless.
People say I act like I don’t care. It’s not an act.
They say good things take time … that’s why I’m always late.
Focused. Intelligent. Motivated. Oh, and cute.
“The question isn’t who is going to let me: it’s who is going to stop me.” -Ayn Rand
It’s okay if you don’t like me. Not everyone has good taste.
I’m a work of art, showing you the art or working.
I only show up wearing my best and you shouldn’t expect less.
You couldn’t even outshine my shadow.
Please don’t call me, I’m out of your range.
If you’re sleeping on me I hope you’re tossing and turning.
Song Lyrics for Instagram Captions
People of all different backgrounds can relate to music. Beyond the different chords and melodies are lyrics that tell a story, echo a feeling, or inspire others.
To convey the message or emotion you want in your Instagram caption, use one of these iconic song lyrics.
“I’m gonna live like tomorrow doesn’t exist.” — Sia, “Chandelier”
“I live for the nights that I can’t remember, with the people that I won’t forget.” — Drake, “Show Me a Good Time”
“I hope you never lose your sense of wonder.” — Lee Ann Womack, “I Hope You Dance”
“You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one.” — John Lennon, “Imagine”
“If you give, you begin to live.” — Dave Matthews Band, “You Might Die Trying”
“Outlining my findings, using life as a stencil.” — Kero One, “In All the Wrong Places”
“Feeling good living better.” — Drake, “Over My Dead Body”
“Say oh, got this feeling that you can’t fight, like this city is on fire tonight.” — OneRepublic, “Good Life”
“Time makes you bolder.” — Fleetwood Mac, “Landslide”
“If I fail, if I succeed, at least I’ll live as I believe.” — Whitney Houston, “The Greatest Love of All”
“The rest of the world was in black and white, but we were in screaming color.” — Taylor Swift, “Out of the Woods”
“Lightning strikes every time she moves.” — Calvin Harris, “This Is What You Came For”
“We aren’t ever getting older.” — Chainsmokers, “Closer”
“Sing with me, sing for the years, sing for the laughter, sing for the tears.” — Aerosmith, “Dream On”
“Life is good.” — Future & Drake, “Life is Good”
“Life without dreaming is a life without meaning.” – Wale, “Aston Martin Music”
“But like the sun, know you know I find my way back ‘round.” — J. Cole, “Crooked Smile”
“I will overcome any hurdle or obstacle that’s in my path.” — OutKast, “Knowing”
“I’m way up, I feel blessed.” — Drake, “Blessings”
“Eat, sleep, and breathe it. Rehearse and repeat it.” — Dua Lipa, “New Rules”
“I’d rather be dry but at least I’m alive. Rain on me.” — Lady Gaga, “Rain On Me”
“And I know that I gotta be above it now. And I know that I can’t let them bring me down.” — Tame Impala, “Be Above It”
“I’m on the pursuit of happiness and I know everything that shine ain’t always gonna be gold, hey, I’ll be fine once I get it, yeah, I’ll be good.” — Kid Cudi, “Pursuit of Happiness (Nightmare)”
“There’s much more to life than dyin’ over your past mistakes and people who threw dirt on your name.” — Lil Nas X, “Sun Goes Down”
“They say the loudest in the room is weak, that’s what they assume, but I disagree.” — Tyler the Creator, “911/Mr. Lonely”
“You don’t have to be like everybody else, you don’t have to fit into the norm, you are not here to conform.” — Marina, “Ancient Dreams in a Modern Land”
“Throw me in the fire, baby, I’ll survive.” — BROCKHAMPTON, “RENTAL”
“When you being real, you ain’t worried ’bout who fake.” —Megan Thee Stallion, “Money Good”
“We’re so young, boy, we ain’t got nothin’ to lose.” -Doja Cat, “Kiss Me More”
“If someone talked to you the way you do to you, I’d put their teeth through. Love Yourself!” -IDLES, “Television”
Holiday Instagram Captions
Around the holidays, you want to post and share the memories you’ve made throughout the years. For whichever one you’re celebrating, take some inspiration from our favorite Instagram captions and spread some holiday cheer.
New Year’s Instagram Captions
“Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other.” — Abraham Lincoln
Didn’t make it to midnight.
Resolutions are made to be broken.
Ringing in the new year — like a bell.
“Tomorrow is the first blank page of a 365-page book. Write a good one.” — Brad Paisley
New year, same me.
Time to show off my bubbly personality.
Any excuse to wear glitter.
Starting off the year on the right foot.
There are 12 months ahead of us to make a difference.
Day 1 of 365
Sip, sip, hooray!
All you need is a fresh start.
Save water, drink champagne.
The best has yet to come.
Valentine’s Day Instagram Captions
Roses are red. Violets are blue. Consider this post my Valentine to you.
Don’t tell me you love me. Tell me you’re outside with pizza.
All I need is you. (And maybe wine + chocolate too.)
Cupid called, he wants his arrow back.
99% of my socks are single, and you don’t see them crying about it.
I will do anything for love. Except that. And that. Or that. Or…
I followed my heart and it led me to the fridge.
Look at us. Hey. Look at us. Who woulda thought? Not me!
In love with my best friend.
I’m better when I’m with you.
Halloween Instagram Captions
Creepin’ it real.
I brake for Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.
Oh my gourd, Becky, look at her bat.
You’re just my (blood) type.
How to eat candy corn: don’t.
Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn and cauldron bubble.
Driving me batty.
“Scary hours.” — Drake
Resting Witch Face
I’m wearing my elastic pants.
“For those of you who cannot be with family this Thanksgiving, please resist the urge to brag.” — Andy Borowitz
On a veggie diet this Thanksgiving: Carrot cake and pumpkin pie.
“Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.” — Oprah Winfrey
I think, therefore I cran.
Bad day to be a turkey.
Need fuel for Black Friday.
“Okay, guys. I have exactly 28 minutes before I have to baste again.” — Monica
Grateful. Thankful. Blessed.
Who made the potato salad?
There’s always something to be thankful for.
To-do list: eat, drink, nap.
I only have pies for you.
Gobble ’til you wobble.
Love at first bite.
Christmas & Hannukah Instagram Captions
You sleigh me.
Fa la la la llama.
“O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree, your ornaments are history.” — The Cat
“It’s not what’s under the Christmas tree that matters. It’s who’s around it.” — Charles M. Schulz
Dear Santa, let’s not talk about this.
Rebel Without a Claus
Doesn’t Santa have anything better to do than watch us while we’re sleeping?
All I want for Christmas is you (and wine would be nice).
Say it ain’t snow.
Drop it like a top.
Wishing you a latke love this Hanukkah.
I want to eat 8 latkes for the calories of one.
One little candle can light up an entire room.
Keep calm and spin that dreidel.
Deck the halls with matzo balls!
It’s Christmas time and I’m the gift.
The best gift is to be present with the ones you love.
Baby, it’s cold outside.
Merry everything and happy always.
Treat yo elf.
Seasonal Instagram Captions
As the seasons come and go, why not share your joy for the next one on your Instagram? Whether you love the sunshine in the Summer, or snowfall in the winter, you can share that excitement with others.
Ring in the new season with some of these witty, seasonal captions.
Spring Instagram Captions
“And I think to myself, what a wonderful world.” — Louis Armstrong
April showers bring May flowers.
I think I just experienced all the seasons in a single day.
I love allergy season, said no one ever.
Currently soaking up the sun and smelling the roses. Please leave a message after the beep.
I owe a lot to the inventor of flip-flops.
“Here comes the sun, and I say… It’s all right.” — The Beatles
“Warm winds in the springtime.” — SZA, “Warm Winds”
Springing into the new season.
Summer Instagram Captions
“Live in the sunshine. Swim in the sea. Drink in the wild air.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
Life’s a beach.
School’s out, sun’s out, guns out.
“A little bit of summer is what the whole year is all about.” — John Mayer
90% happy, 10% burnt.
Girls just want to have sun.
“Summer lovin’ had me a blast, summer lovin’ happened so fast.” — Grease
Happiness is a cold popsicle.
Life is better by the pool.
“Summertime and the livin’ is easy.” — Ella Fitzgerald, “Summertime”
“Here comes the sun, and I say… It’s all right.” — The Beatles, “Here Comes the Sun”
Tans, tans, tans across the board.
Fall Instagram Captions
My favorite color is October.
“Wild is the music of autumnal winds amongst the faded woods.” — William Wordsworth
My favorite kind of weather.
It’s never too early for pumpkin spice.
Meet me in the corn maze.
Crisp air. Apple cider. Flaming foliage.
Pumpkin spice and everything nice.
“Anyone who thinks fallen leaves are dead has never watched them dancing on a windy day.” — Shira Tamir
Leaves are falling, and autumn is calling.
“Days in the sun and nights in the rain. Summer is over, simple and plain.” — Drake & Majid Jordan, “Summer’s Over”
Falling never felt so good.
Painted in the colors of fall.
Even the leaves fall for you.
Channel the flannel.
Winter Instagram Captions
“In the depths of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.” — Albert Camus
If it’s snowing, I’m not going.
Cozy nights. Good books. Hot chocolate.
Do you want to build a snowman?
Running on caffeine and holiday cheer.
“Winter is not a season; it’s a celebration.” — Anamika Mishra
Merry and brrrrrrright.
Having snow much fun.
‘Tis the season to be freezin’.
“Timb’ laces get tighter and parka hoods flip up.” — Drake, “Come Winter”
Selfie Instagram Captions
Selfies are a celebration of something unique, beautiful, and full of life — you! So when you share your next selfie, complement it with one of our favorite selfie Instagram captions.
Me, myself, and I.
Be yourself, there’s no one better.
It’s the happiness for me.
Smile! The happiness is right under your nose.
My favorite filter is reality.
Conquer the world one smile at a time.
It’s a great day to have a great day.
The greatest gift you can give someone is a smile.
Self-love is the best love.
The only rose that blooms in winter.
“But she looked powerful. She wore the sun like a shiny pin on the side of her hair.” –Lilian Li
I don’t need a hairstylist. My pillow gives me a new hairstyle every morning.
Morning hair, don’t care.
Anything but basic.
Hard to be down to earth when you look out of this world.
Looking like I don’t know how to lose.
Beautiful from halo to toe.
I’m ready for my close-up.
Baddie Instagram Captions
That OOTD or travel photo with the beautiful lighting, impeccable attire, and je ne se quois makes a great addition to your Instagram feed. Here are some captions to convey “baddie” energy.
“She who dares, wins.”
“Don’t let anyone dim your shine.”
“Stay focused, stay fierce.”
“I’m not bossy, I’m the boss.”
“I’m not always right, but I’m never wrong.”
“Chasing my dreams in Chanel.”
“Not afraid to break the rules.”
“Be the girl that decided to go for it.”
“I refuse to be anything less.”
“Confidence isn’t walking into a room thinking you’re better than anyone, it’s just walking in and not having to compare yourself to anyone at all.”
“A perfect work-in-progress.”
“Improvement is a journey.”
“My standards are high because I know my worth.”
“Some girls are just born with glitter in their veins.”
“I am not a one in a million kind of girl. I am a once in a lifetime kind of woman.”
Travel & Vacation Instagram Captions
When you want to treat yourself, a vacation is always a great reward.
It’s a chance to experience different cultures, food, music and scenery. When you’re out exploring the world, share some of your favorite travel moments with these awesome Instagram captions.
Majestic moments in [place].
A chance to get away from the everyday.
Work. Save. Travel. Repeat.
Collect the moments, not the materials.
Another destination off the bucket list.
An adventure to fill the soul.
The scenic route is always better.
I need a six-month vacation, twice a year.
Be back never.
Catch flights, not feelings.
Always take the scenic route.
I’ve never met a vacation I didn’t like.
An adventure a day keeps the doctor away.
Travel is an investment in yourself.
Some call it vacation, I call it heaven.
“I hate traveling.” said no traveler ever.
If you need me, call me on my shell phone.
I can sea clearly now.
Happiness comes in waves.
A change in latitude helps my attitude.
Beach Instagram Captions
“Enjoying the waves.”
“Sandy toes, sun-kissed nose.”
“Pure, sunburned happiness.”
“Life’s a 🏖️.”
“No worries. No thoughts.”
“There’s nothing more healing than the sound of the ocean.”
“My happy place.”
“Time at the beach is never wasted.”
“Live in the sunshine, swim in the sea, drink in the wild air.”
“See ya when I’m back on earth. ✌️”
“The beach is always a good idea.”
“Agenda today: Do nothing. Get sunburnt.”
“The beach: where doing absolutely nothing, is doing everything.”
“Life is too short, go on that beach vacation.”
Birthday Instagram Captions
“Another year wiser.”
“A whole year older and still young at heart.”
“Celebrating another spin around the sun.”
“A new year of life, a new chapter to write.”
“Growing old is mandatory, but growing up is optional.”
“Here’s to one more year of blessings and adventures.”
“Happy day of emergence to me.”
“Here’s to another year of making memories together.”
“Age is just a number, it’s the memories that count.”
“Another year to shine bright.”
“Celebrating a day filled with love, laughter, and of course, cake!”
“[Previous age], you were good to me. Now it’s time for another year of shenanigans.”
“Cheers to one more year on this planet called Earth.”
“Another year more grateful.”
Prom Instagram Captions
“A night to remember.”
“Dancing the night away with my favorite people.”
“Memories to last a lifetime.”
“Tonight, we’re young.”
“Ready to have the time of our lives.”
“Prom photo dump.”
“Prom [current year].”
“Let prom night begin!”
“The night is young and so are we.”
“Feeling like a prince/princess tonight.”
“Started from the bottom, now we’re all fancy and stuff.”
“Here’s to a night of memories we’ll cherish forever.”
“Who needs a limo?”
“Let the party begin!”
Graduation Instagram Captions
“The tassel was worth the hassle.”
“The beginning of a new adventure.”
“Today is the first day of the rest of our lives.”
“I feel like I was in ninth grade JUST yesterday?”
“Keeping it on 💯”
“Onward and upward.”
“Class of [year], can’t believe we did it!”
“It’s not the end, it’s just the beginning.”
“[Class year] is the best class, no 🧢”
“Cheers to new beginnings, and to ending what we started.”
“The future belongs to those who believe.”
“The best is yet to come.”
“Ready to seize the world.”
“Look back on your accomplishments with pride, and look forward to the future with excitement.”
“We did it — it’s time to celebrate!”
Food Instagram Captions
“Good food, good life.”
“Eating may be a necessity, but cooking is an art.”
“Life is short, eat dessert first.”
“Food is not just fuel, it’s information. It talks to your DNA and tells it what to do. So… you’d better bet I’m gonna eat.”
“Food is love made visible.”
“Good food with even better people.”
“Eating my favorite with my favorites.”
“The only thing better than talking about food is eating it.”
“A night of [food item]: the ultimate stress reliever.”
“Nothing more romantic than eating [food item] and [food item] in sweatpants with crumbs on our chests.”
“My favorite hole-in-the wall place.”
“Good food equals good mood.”
“A party without cake is just a meeting.”
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food. Anyway, who wants fries?”
Pet & Dog Instagram Captions
“My heart is full of paw prints.”
“Who needs a therapist when you have a dog?”
“Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.”
“Life is too short to not have a dog.”
“#1 family member (sorry, mom).”
“I woof you more than words can express.”
“Every day is an adventure with my four-legged buddy.”
“The best kind of love.”
“Adopt, don’t shop.”
“Everything’s better with your little paws by my side.”
“My [pet] is the king/queen of my heart.”
“The only thing better than coming home after a long day is being greeted by you.”
“My dog is smarter than most politicians.”
“The best things in life are furry and have four legs.”
“I didn’t choose the dog life, the dog life chose me.”
Features of Good Instagram Captions
Want to write a caption from scratch? I totally get it. If you’re anything like me, you take about four minutes choosing a filter for your Instagram photo, and about four hours deciding on a caption.
Worst of all, after much creative effort and advice from friends, I’m usually barely able to write a caption that goes beyond, “Had a fun day with friends!” And I’m a writer — go figure.
The point is, writing a good caption is hard. Whether you create one from scratch or choose a pre-written one, it should fulfill a few requirements.
1. Your caption is on-brand.
Whether your Instagram page is personal or for your business, your captions should be on-brand, or reflective of your brand identity.
This encapsulates the nature of your Instagram’s branding and tone of voice. For example, if your page is based on self-love, you should use captions that are friendly in tone, and use inclusive language to make people feel good when they scroll through your Instagram profile.
2. Your caption is simple.
Instagram captions can fit up to 2,200 characters, but you don’t have to use all of them for your caption to be considered a good one. You ideally want to keep your captions clear, short, and simple for easy readability. You also want to keep your audience’s attention enough to read it to finish.
The exception to this is if you’re making posts that champion storytelling or other lengthy formats. Ultimately, it comes down to what your audience is looking for.
3. Your caption is memorable.
While your Instagram caption doesn’t have to be a profound piece of literature, you can make it memorable in a number of ways. Depending on the type of post you’re sharing, you can make it hilarious, thought-provoking, inspiring, or anything you want it to be.
Want more inspiration? Check out our Instagram page to see how we incorporate fun, witty, and engaging captions into our social media content. The captions often complement the post itself and prompt engagement from users. Instagram Insights metrics such as comments, likes, and saves show you how well you’re engaging users and whether your captions are effective in prompting likes and comments.
Here’s one example from HubSpot with the caption “You can’t spell ‘CRM’ without ‘R’”:
Don’t underestimate the power of a good caption. They can help you generate more engagement and turn your followers into customers.
How to Make Engaging IG Captions
Instagram captions can actually be used strategically, and in many cases help personal or business pages to increase engagement on the platform — and here’s how.
1. Ask your followers questions.
If you’re looking to entice your followers to interact or like your posts more, you could ask them for their opinion, recommendations, or even personal stories to make your page more interactive.
For example, if you’re running an Instagram page for fashion, ask your followers to comment under your newest post about their favorite designers, collections, or trends buzzing in the industry.
Or if you’re promoting a product or service, ask your followers to chime in on what they’d like to see, a problem they need solved, or even ask for a product review or testimonial on how your business has positively impacted them.
2. Add a CTA.
If you advertise your business, product, or free resource, add a clear and enticing call to action.
It doesn’t have to be the entire IG caption, but including it on the tail end of your post’s description can lead your followers from simply liking your post to visiting your online storefront or website.
3. Incorporate relevant hashtags.
You can use up to a maximum of 30 hashtags on a typical Instagram post, these give you a lot of possibilities to attract viewers based on your topic, location, industry, product, or service. Though, you shouldn’t feel pressured to use that many, just choose the ones you find essential, or even come up with your own personally branded one.
Capture the Feeling with an Instagram Caption
Even though an image is worth 1,000 words, a well-written caption couldn’t hurt. These days, the caption can make just as much of a statement as the image! For all of the occasions that are worthy of a post to your feed, use one of the quotes from this list and customize it to make it your own.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in June 2020 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
The 17 Best Marketing Automation Tools Available to You
A majority of businesses use marketing automation tools nowadays — in fact, studies cite around 56% of businesses currently use the technology, and that number continues to grow.
While marketing automation software can help companies increase efficiency by streamlining their workflows, there are so many options to choose from, full of different solutions with various features and use cases.
In this article, we’ll cover:
- What are marketing automation tools?
- How to Choose the Best Marketing Automation Software
- Marketing Automation Software Options to Consider
What are marketing automation tools?
Marketing automation tools use software to automate repetitive marketing tasks. Some platforms only offer email actions, drip sequences, and CRM updates. Others may help with lead scoring, sales lead rotation, SMS, and more.
Automating your marketing tasks can benefit your business by increasing overall efficiency and allowing you more time to work on high-level projects. For example, you can use marketing automation tools to collect valuable data that can be used to create more personalized marketing campaigns and increase conversion rates.
How to Choose the Best Marketing Automation Software
A more niche marketing automation product may be better for SMB and B2C environments, but B2B and enterprise companies may need a platform with wider capability. Here are some key areas to consider as you evaluate marketing automation software products to choose the one that’s right for you:
1. Determine Your Budget and Business Needs
If automation’s benefit can be summed up with one statement, it’s this: It will make you more efficient so you can focus on the tasks you enjoy and that have the highest return. With that in mind, you’ll want to evaluate price as you consider capability.
For SMBs and B2C organizations focusing primarily on email, a scaled-down system might be sufficient. However, with more advanced needs, enterprise (and thus higher ticket) software is more cost-efficient in the long run.
Be sure to choose a provider that’s reasonably priced but can also grow with you as your needs change. After all, reducing bloated operations is critical to scaling effectively.
2. Evaluate the Software’s Ease of Use
Automation isn’t a simple thing to implement, so make sure the interface of the software will work with you, not against you. See if you can find screenshots of the UX so you can determine if it looks simple and easy to navigate.
Automation can be technical, so look for providers that have robust knowledge bases, tutorials, and other customer support options.
3. Explore Analytics and Reporting Options
You’ll want to be able to measure the success of any drip campaigns you have running, so make sure your automation software will keep track of the metrics that matter most to you.
In B2B and enterprise environments with many stakeholders, you may also need advanced reporting abilities such as personalized dashboards or automatic reporting via email.
4. Research Integrations
How well does the marketing automation software play with your existing stack? Integrations allow you to manage data and get more from your tools.
Pro-tip: You can find our essential apps for marketers in HubSpot’s App Marketplace.
5. Consider Potential Limitations
Some automation software platforms may limit the number of actions in a month or the database size you’re allowed.
Going into any evaluation, know how many contacts you have, how many emails you send on average, and what you want the software to accomplish. This will prevent you from underestimating the cost of your automation software.
6. Request a Demo
Before making a final decision, consider reaching out to each provider’s sales team to request a demo or sign up for free trial offers. Trying out a marketing automation tool before you buy it can help you determine which features best serve your needs.
Here, we’ve cultivated a list of marketing automation tools examples to help you sort through your options and feel confident choosing the best solution for you and your team.
1. HubSpot Marketing Automation
HubSpot’s marketing automation functionality is one of the most powerful tools on this list in terms of features. It’s also one of the most popular in terms of customer sentiment, according to the G2 Grid for Marketing Automation.
Of course, HubSpot has a full growth suite that includes sales software, marketing software, and support software, which all integrate automatically with HubSpot’s CRM.
The combined effect of having all of your data and growth activity in one place can unleash tons of creative automation possibilities that would be difficult or impossible if you use separate tools.
As a standalone, HubSpot’s marketing automation functionality includes an easy-to-use visual board where you can craft simple or highly sophisticated conditional workflows.
It can take time to master the tool (you’ll scale up more quickly with the help of HubSpot Academy), but once you get a grasp on it, the creative possibilities are endless.
You can set up simple email list autoresponders, or build a smart and complex network of rules designed to target specific users with the exact right email, live chat, website experience, and more.
Basically, HubSpot’s automation tools go far beyond email, so you can scale your growth and spend less time on repetitive tasks.
Price: HubSpot’s email and form marketing automation tools are free. Increased access and features are available in paid versions of Marketing Hub, which start at $45 per month.
Marketing automation isn’t just about email. Imagine automating some of the most repetitive conversations you have with customers on other platforms. ManyChat functions as a chatbot that can do just that on Facebook Messenger, Instagram Direct Messages, WhatsApp, and SMS.
A bot can be built in minutes with ManyChat’s templates and easy-to-use interface. In addition, the information you learn about your users can be synced to your CRM and other tools.
Price: ManyChat offers a free monthly plan that allows engagement with up to 1,000 contacts via Instagram Direct Messages, Facebook Messenger, and WhatsApp. Additional access and features are available through ManyChat’s paid plans, which start at $15 per month.
Having started out as an email marketing service, SendPulse gradually evolved into a full-scale marketing automation platform with a variety of channels to reach existing and potential customers.
Established brands and small businesses alike can build highly personalized message flows that combine emails, chatbots, and SMS notifications. The visual chatbot builder itself is very versatile as it allows users to create chatbots for Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Telegram, and Viber. It also supports ChatGPT integration, which will make the chatbot even more human-like.
Price: SendPulse provides a monthly free plan. Paid plans start at around $10 per month.
Moosend is an email marketing automation platform that caters to various industries, including ecommerce and SaaS.
The automation feature uses advanced website tracking and triggers that allow you to send the right email campaign to those in your contacts who are interested in a specific product or service. For example, you can set up a cart abandonment series to target potential customers who left their shopping carts without making a purchase.
Collecting and managing customer data can also come in handy as you can use them to craft product recommendation campaigns based on product views. This data also allows you to create detailed reports of the campaign’s progress and the users’ activity so you can optimize the effectiveness of your promotional messages
Price: Moosend offers a 30-day free trial so you can try before you buy. After that, Pro plans start at $9 per month.
Snov.io is a must-have for businesses and sales teams looking to streamline their lead generation and cold outreach efforts. It’s an all-in-one toolset designed for small businesses and solopreneurs to find, verify, and reach out to leads, with a range of features, including Email Finder, Email Verifier, Email Warm-Up, free CRM, and more.
One of the standout features of Snov.io is its email automation tool, Email Drip Campaigns. You can create highly personalized email campaigns to engage your audience. It also comes with a robust reporting and analytics suite, enabling you to track the performance of your campaigns and optimize your outreach efforts for maximum impact.
Price: Snov.io offers both forever-free and premium plans. The premium plans start at $39 per month.
Omnisend is an omnichannel marketing automation platform built for ecommerce. Offering powerful automation workflows, you can get started quickly with pre-built templates that keep online merchants in mind.
With Omnisend, you can add several channels within the same automation workflow: email, SMS, Facebook Messenger, push notifications, and more. Omnisend also uses a user-friendly visual builder and templates which make creating workflows, forms, landing pages, pop ups, and emails quick and easy.
Price: Omnisend offers a free plan with basic email marketing automation that is best suited for small businesses just starting out. Medium to larger-sized businesses will most likely benefit from Omnisend’s paid plans, which start at $16 per month.
EngageBay is another marketing automation platform designed specifically for small to medium-sized businesses.
This software comes with a wide range of features including email marketing, social media management, and website chat.
Other commendable features include drag-and-drop builders for landing pages and emails, A/B testing, SMS marketing, push notifications, abandoned cart retrieval and reminders, autoresponders, canned responses, and more.
Price: EngageBay offers a free plan for small businesses, as well as three advanced paid plans that scale with your business needs, starting at $10.39 per user per month.
Unlike other marketing automation tools, Ontraport is a business automation software specifically designed for entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, and small businesses.
While it has a CRM and marketing automation functionality, it also has several other features to run and grow a small business, including but not limited to email marketing, landing pages, reporting, and ecommerce.
One of the most valuable things Ontraport offers is its focus on reporting and insights. While some tools can be a bit of a black box, Ontraport gives you a clear look at the performance of your campaigns.
Price: Though Ontraport does not have a free plan, it does offer a free 14-day trial with each of its four paid plans. Pricing for Ontraport’s basic plan starts at $29 per month, which includes unlimited email sending and drag-and-drop marketing automation.
SendinBlue is a digital marketing platform that features well-liked automation software suited for both beginner and advanced marketers.
With SendinBlue, you can design mobile-friendly email campaigns either from scratch or through customizable templates. You can also run SMS campaigns from SendInBlue. Advanced features include reporting and lead scoring.
Price: SendinBlue offers a pretty impressive free plan, which includes basic marketing automation functionality, unlimited contacts, and up to 300 emails per day. Paid plans start at $25 per month.
ActiveCampaign is an integrated email marketing, marketing automation, and small business CRM.
The strongest point of ActiveCampaign is its powerful and flexible marketing automation functionality. It’s one of the most comprehensive solutions on the market. Its deliverability is rated as one of the best in the market, as well.
This probably isn’t a good tool for beginners or those with low technical capabilities. It takes a bit more time and effort to learn — but when you do learn the platform, it’s pretty powerful.
Price: Though ActiveCampaign does not have a free plan or trial, it does offer a variety of paid plans that can be suited for B2B, B2C, or ecommerce businesses starting at $29 per month.
11. Salesforce Marketing Cloud Account Engagement
Formerly known as Pardot, Salesforce Marketing Cloud Account Engagement is a cloud automation solution that mostly serves enterprise clients that have the technical resources and time to learn the platform.
It has a ton of features that automate communication to existing contacts, from CRM integration to email marketing, lead nurturing, and an ROI reporting functionality to make sure your campaigns are working.
You can track all interactions on your website and build predictive lead scoring based on the parameters you set. All of this helps improve marketing efficiency and remove wasted time and effort from your sales team.
It’s important to note that while it is incredibly powerful, this software may not be as accessible or affordable for smaller businesses or entrepreneurs as there is not a free plan or trial.
Price: Plans for Marketing Cloud Account Engagement start at $1,250 per month.
Keap (formerly known as Infusionsoft) has been around since 2001 and has helped thousands of marketers deliver on leads, revenue, and customer acquisition targets.
Keap really flourishes in the small business and solopreneur crowd, and in my experience, I’ve noticed it has a pretty sophisticated user base.
You can set up relatively complex decision trees depending on which lead magnet someone signs up for, how many (and which) emails they open and click, or other contact property data.
As Keap’s features continue to evolve, long-time customers may prefer Keap’s Max Classic plan since it is most similar to Infusionsoft’s original platform.
Price: Keap offers a free 14-day trial and three different paid plans based on customer needs, starting as low as $129 per month.
Originally known as Autopilot, Ortto is one of the most visually appealing marketing automation solutions on the market.
Ortto’s automation software allows you to create emails with its easy-to-use, visual campaign builder. Other features include audience segmentation, comprehensive data analytics, and activity tracking.
Of course, this platform is typically used for more sophisticated messaging and targeting, but you can also create a simple autoresponder based on a time sequence.
Price: Ortto offers a free plan for those who are new to marketing automation. It also offers free 14-day trials for all of its paid plans, which start at $29 per month.
Marketo was founded in 2006 as a marketing automation software company. It was later acquired by Adobe and incorporated into its enterprise marketing cloud.
The Adobe integration means that, if you use Adobe Analytics for data measurement and Adobe Target for experimentation and personalization, you’ll have a powerful enterprise marketing automation and optimization suite.
The tool is typically geared toward enterprise customers — it’s a bit out of range for most small business owners.
Price: Adobe does not offer a free trial or plan for Marketo. Since Marketo’s plan prices are determined by your database size, you will need to reach out to the sales department for a quote.
GetResponse is a marketing automation software that has many different layers and features. Its affordable Email Marketing plan includes basic autoresponders, templates, and a list size of 1,000 contacts.
GetReponse’s more premium plans include powerful features like drip campaigns, contact scoring, event-based automation, ecommerce tracking, and more.
In general, this software is easy-to-use. You’ll typically find good results from the tool, although it works best with the simpler features, like email newsletters. It can become trickier to work with the platform if you plan on implementing complicated conditional logic and marketing automation.
Price: GetResponse offers a free plan that’s great for sending out newsletters. However, GetResponse’s marketing automation features are only included in its paid plans, which start at $13.30 per month.
Drip is one of the few marketing automation tools in this list that is primarily focused on ecommerce marketing automation. It provides one of the more “open” platforms, claiming that it plays well with “pretty much any marketing strategy you want to put in motion.”
Additionally, email is one of its strengths. Some email marketing and automation features include unlimited email sends, pre-built workflows, and multi-channel marketing.
It also excels in personalization and analytics. Overall, Drip is a powerful tool for ecommerce marketing automation.
Price: Though Drip does not have a free plan, it does offer a free 14-day trial. Paid plans are based on your number of email contacts and start at $39 per month.
Mautic is the only open-source marketing automation platform on this list. It’s also a relatively new player, only founded in 2014. Mautic has grown quickly, though, and is seemingly picking up steam with high-tech companies.
Currently, over 200,000 organizations use Mautic and it is available in over 35 languages.
Getting Started with Marketing Automation
There are tons of options for marketing automation software. It’s all about choosing the right one for your business purposes, budget, and technical expertise.
Want something incredibly powerful and limitless? It may end up costing more and taking time and effort to learn. The cheaper options, by comparison, might have too limited a scale. Ultimately, it’s a trade-off.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in April 2019 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
The Ultimate Guide to Google Ads [Examples]
Given Google’s expansive reach, with somewhere with over 8.5 billion searches per day, chances are you’ve seen (and probably clicked on) a Google ad, and so have your potential customers.
And if you’ve landed on this blog post, you’re probably looking to get in on the Google Ads action for your own business. You’re in luck!
In this guide, we give you the nitty gritty about how to start advertising on Google. We’ll even cover features specific to the platform and teach you how to optimize your campaigns to achieve the best results with your ads.
What is Google Ads?
Google Ads is a pay-per-click (PPC) advertising platform, where advertisers pay per click (or impression) on an ad.
Google Ads is an effective way to drive qualified traffic, or good-fit customers, to your business because they’re searching for products and services like the ones you offer. With Google Ads, you can boost your website traffic, receive more inquiries, and increase in-store visits.
Over time, Google Ads will also help you analyze and optimize those ads to reach more people.
Discover how HubSpot can help you better manage your Google Ads.
Why advertise on Google?
- Google is the most used search engine, receiving billions of searches per day made by millions of users. Not to mention, the Google Ads platform has been around for nearly two decades, giving it some seniority and authority in paid advertising.
- Your competitors are using Google Ads (and they might even be bidding on your branded terms). Hundreds of thousands of companies use Google Ads to promote their businesses, which means that even if you’re ranking organically for a search term, your results are being pushed down the page beneath your competitors.
1. Ad Extensions
Ad Extensions allow you to supplement your ad with additional information at no extra cost. These extensions fall under one of five categories: Sitelink, Call, Location, Offer, or App.
Your AdRank determines your ad placement. The higher the value, the better you’ll rank, the more eyes will fall on your ad, and the higher the probability of users clicking your ad. Your AdRank is determined by your maximum bid multiplied by your Quality Score.
Google Ads is based on a bidding system, where you, as the advertiser, select a maximum bid amount you’re willing to pay for a click on your ad. The higher your bid, the better your placement. You have three options for bidding: CPC, CPM, or CPE.
- CPC, or cost-per-click, is the amount you pay for each click on your ad.
- CPM, or cost per mille, is the amount you pay for one thousand ad impressions; that is when your ad is shown to a thousand people.
- CPE, or cost per engagement, is the amount you pay when someone takes a predetermined action with your ad.
And, yes, we’ll review bidding strategies below.
4. Campaign Type
Before you begin a paid campaign on Google Ads, you’ll select between seven campaign types: search, display, video, shopping, app, smart, or performance max.
- Search ads are text ads that are displayed among search results on a Google results page.
- Display ads are typically image-based and are shown on web pages within the Google Display Network.
- Video ads are between six and 15 seconds and appear on YouTube.
- Shopping campaigns appear on search results and the Google shopping tab.
- App campaigns use information from your app to optimize ads across websites.
- Smart campaigns have Google finding the best targeting to get you the most bang for your buck.
- Performance Max is a new campaign type that lets advertisers access all Google Ads inventory from a single campaign.
5. Click-Through Rate (CTR)
Your CTR is the number of clicks you get on your ad as a proportion of the number of impressions your ad gets. A higher CTR indicates a quality ad matching search intent and targeting relevant keywords.
6. Conversion Rate (CVR)
CVR is a measure of form submissions as a proportion of total visits to your landing page. Simplistically speaking, a high CVR means that your landing page presents a seamless user experience that matches the ad’s promise.
7. Display Network
Google ads can be displayed on either search results pages or a web page within Google’s Display Network (GDN). GDN is a network of websites that allow space on their web pages for Google Ads — these ads can be text- or image-based and are displayed alongside content relevant to your target keywords. The most popular Display Ad options are Google Shopping and app campaigns.
Every Time your ad is shown on the SERP, it receives an impression. Some advertisers and marketers like to refer to this informally as “eyeballs” on the ad.
Impressions make up one half of the CTR equation we mentioned above.
You can use this insight from impressions to understand how many people who see your ad are clicking through to your landing page and optimize your ad to get a higher CTR.
Keep in mind that it’s virtually impossible to have all impressions convert to clicks and achieve a 100% CTR. People may click off the SERP (zero click search), click on a competitor’s ad, or even click on an organic search result instead of clicking your ad.
When a Google user types a query into the search field, Google returns a range of results that match the searcher’s intent. Keywords are words or phrases that align with what a searcher wants and will satisfy their query. You select keywords based on which queries you want to display your ad alongside. For example, a searcher that types “how to clean gum off shoes” will see results for advertisers that targeted keywords like “gum on shoes” and “clean shoes.”
Negative keywords are a list of keyword terms that you do not want to rank for. Google will pull you from the bid on these keywords. Typically, these are semi-related to your intended search terms but fall outside of the realm of what you offer or want to rank for.
Pay-per-click, or PPC, is a type of advertising where the advertiser pays per click on an ad. PPC is not specific to Google Ads, but it is the most common type of paid campaign. It’s important to understand the ins and outs of PPC before launching your first Google Ads campaign.
11. Quality Score (QS)
Your Quality Score measures the quality of your ad by your click-through rate (CTR), the relevance of your keywords, the quality of your landing page, and your past performance on the SERPs. QS is a determining factor in your AdRank.
How does Google Ads work?
There are three players in the Google Ads process: the searcher, the advertiser, and the Google Ads platform. Each one has a role to play in making Google Ads work so that advertisers and businesses can make money and customers see (and potentially buy) products and services that meet their needs.
Here’s a breakdown of what happens behind the scenes with Google Ads:
1. Advertisers bid on keywords in Google ads.
Bidding on keywords is how advertisers let Google know which keywords they want their ads to show up for on the SERPs. Keyword bids can range from a few bucks to hundreds of dollars per keyword. Advertisers typically set a daily budget which is used to fund the individual keyword bids.
Additionally, no matter the size of your business or your available resources, you can tailor your ads to suit your budget. The Google Ads tool allows you to stay within your monthly cap and even pause or stop your ad spending at any point in time.
2. The potential customer searches for a keyword in Google.
Next, the potential customer searches for a keyword that an advertiser has bid on. On the SERP, they’ll see ads for products or services that closely align with the intent of their query. The order of the ads they see largely depends on ad rank.
3. Google shows ads for that keyword based on ad rank.
Between the time it takes for the user to type their search into Google’s search bar and the moment the SERP for that keyword appears, Google is working quickly in the background to perform a process called ad rank.
Within seconds, Google ranks advertisers in positions one through the total number of ad spaces available on the SERP. They use keyword quality score and the amount the advertisers have bid on the keyword to determine who gets the number one spot, number two, three, and so on.
4. The potential customer clicks through to one of the websites listed on the SERP.
Once the customer sees the ads for the keyword they searched, they may decide to click through on one that they believe best matches the intent of their search.
From there, they may decide to make a purchase, or click back to the SERP and choose another ad or an organic SERP result to click on. They may also choose to end the search without a click or a purchase.
Factors That Influence Google Ads
Many factors impact your ability to create effective and high-performing Google Ads. Let’s cover them below.
AdRank determines the placement of your ads. It’s determined by a formula that takes into account Quality Score and the amount you bid on a keyword.
Quality score is based on the quality and relevance of your ad, and Google measures that by how many people click on your ad when it’s displayed — i.e., your CTR. Your CTR depends on how well your ad matches searcher intent, which you can deduce from three areas:
- How relevant your keywords are
- Whether your ad copy and CTA meet the searcher’s intent
- The user experience of your landing page
Your quality score is where you should focus most of your attention when you first set up your Google Ad campaign — even before you increase your bid amount. The higher your QS, the lower your acquisition costs will be and the better placement you’ll get without having to pay more money.
When you first set up your Google ad, you’ll select a geographical area where your ad will be shown. If you have a storefront, this should be within a reasonable radius around your physical location. If you have an ecommerce store and a physical product, your location should be set in the places where you ship. If you provide a service or product that is accessible worldwide, then the sky’s the limit.
Your location settings will play a role in placement. For instance, if you own a yoga studio in San Francisco, someone in New York that enters “yoga studio” will not see your result, no matter your AdRank. That’s because Google’s main objective is to display the most relevant results to searchers.
Keyword research is just as important for paid ads as it is for organic search. Your keywords need to match searcher intent as much as possible. That’s because Google matches your ad with search queries based on the keywords you selected.
Each ad group that you create within your campaign will target a small set of keywords (one to five keywords is optimal), and Google will display your ad based on those selections.
Match Types give you a little wiggle room when it comes to your keyword selections — they tell Google whether you want to match a search query exactly or if your ad should be shown to anyone with a search query that’s semi-related. There are four match types to choose from:
- Broad Match is the default setting that uses any word within your keyword phrase in any order. For example, “goat yoga in Oakland” will match “goat yoga” or “yoga Oakland.”
- Modified Broad Match allows you to lock in certain words within a keyword phrase by denoting them with a “+” sign. Your matches will include that locked-in word at the very least. For example, “+goats yoga in Oakland” could yield “goats,” “goats like food,” or “goats and yoga.”
- Phrase Match will match with queries that include your keyword phrase in the exact order but may include additional words before or after it. For example, “goat yoga” can yield “spotted goat yoga” or “goat yoga with puppies.”
- Exact Match maintains your keyword phrase as it is written in the exact order. For example, “goat yoga” will not show up if someone types “goats yoga” or “goat yoga class.”
If you’re just starting out and don’t know precisely how your persona will be searching, move from a broad match to a more narrow approach so you can test which queries yield the best results. However, since your ad will be ranking for many queries (some unrelated), you should keep a close eye on your ads and modify them as you can gain new information.
Headline and Description
Your ad copy can be the difference between a click on your ad and a click on your competitor’s ad. Therefore, it’s important that your ad copy matches the searcher’s intent, is aligned with your target keywords, and addresses the persona’s pain point with a clear solution.
To illustrate what we mean, let’s review an example.
A search for “baby swim lessons” yielded this result. The copy is concise and uses limited space wisely to convey its message and connect with its target audience.
The Swim Revolution knew to put the keyword in their headline, so we instantly know that this ad matches what we’re looking for. Furthermore, the description tells us why this is the best option for swim lessons because it addresses the concerns of their persona — a parent looking to enroll their baby in a swim class.
They use words like “skills,” “fun,” “confidence,” and “comfort in the water” to ease our nerves about putting a baby in a pool and to prove to us that we will get what we want out of this class — an infant that can swim.
This kind of ad copy will get you clicks, but conversions will result from carrying this level of intention into your landing page copy.
If you’re running Google Ads, you should be using Ad Extensions for two reasons: they’re free, and they give users additional information and another reason to interact with your ad. These extensions fall within one of these five categories:
- Sitelink Extensions extend your ad — helping you stand out — and provide additional links to your site that offer users more enticing reasons to click.
- Call Extensions allow you to incorporate your phone number in your ad, so users have an additional (and instant) way to reach out to you. If you have a customer service team that is ready to engage and convert your audience, then include your phone number.
- Location Extensions include your location and phone number within your ad so Google can offer searchers a map to find you easily. This option is great for businesses with a storefront, and it works well for the search query “…near me.”
- Offer Extensions work if you’re running a current promotion. It can entice users to click your ad over others if they see that your options are discounted compared to your competitors.
- App Extensions provide a link to an app download for mobile users. This reduces the friction of performing a new search to find and download the app in an AppStore.
Google Ads Retargeting
Retargeting (or remarketing) in Google Ads is a way to advertise to users who have previously interacted with you online but have not yet converted. Tracking cookies will follow users around the web and target these users with your ads. Remarketing is effective since most prospects need to see your marketing multiple times before becoming a customer.
How to Use Google Ads
Convinced that you should start using Google Ads? Good. Getting started is simple, but requires a few steps. Here’s a step-by-step guide for setting up your first campaign on Google Ads.
1. Use a Google Ads planning template.
You don’t have to start from scratch when using Google Ads. Using a Google Ads PPC Kit takes the guesswork out of the platform and gives you a running start on the competition.
Featured Resource: The Ultimate Google Ads PPC Kit
Whether you’re using a template or going for it on your own, follow the remaining steps to start your Google Ads campaign.
2. Set up your Google Ads account.
First, go to the Google Ads homepage. On the top right-hand corner, click on ‘Start Now.’
You’ll be directed to sign in with a Google account or set up a new one.
3. Choose your business name and website.
After signing in, you’ll be taken to a page where you’ll provide your business name and website. The domain you provide is where anyone who clicks on your ad will be taken.
4. Select your advertising goal.
Next, select your main advertising goal. You have four options: Get more calls, get more website sales or sign-ups, get more visits to your physical location, and get more views and engagement on YouTube.
5. Craft your ad.
The next step is to create your ad. This requires creativity and can be a bit challenging.
Thankfully, Google gives you tips on what to write. But, of course, the most important thing is to write an ad that’ll attract and convert your audience.
6. Add keyword themes.
On the next page, you can choose keywords that match your brand. Google will suggest a few for you; if you’re not familiar with keyword research, we suggest selecting the ones Google has suggested to start. After selecting the right keywords, click ‘Next.’
7. Set your ad location.
The next page lets you choose the location or locations where you want your ad to appear. It can be near your physical address or anywhere else.
8. Set your budget.
Here, you’ll either use the budget options offered by Google or enter a specific budget.
9. Confirm payment.
Lastly, provide your billing information.
And that’s how easy it is to create your first Google ad!
As you can see, setting up your paid campaigns on Google is relatively easy (and quick), mostly because the platform takes you through the setup and provides helpful hints along the way. If you have your ad copy and/or images created, the setup should take you no more than 10 minutes.
What may be less obvious are all the additional things you need to do to make sure your ads are optimally set up and easily trackable. Let’s cover these next. These are the steps you’ll take once your ads are submitted for review.
10. Link your Google Analytics account.
You likely have Google Analytics set up on your website (if not, here’s how to do it on WordPress) so you can track traffic, conversions, goals, and any unique metrics. You also need to link your Analytics account to Google Ads. Linking these accounts will make tracking, analyzing, and reporting between channels and campaigns much easier because you can view these events in one place.
11. Add UTM codes.
Urchin Tracking Module (UTM) codes are used by Google to track any activity associated with a specific link. You’ve probably seen them before — it’s the part of a URL that follows a question mark (“?”). UTM codes will tell you which offer or ad led to a conversion so you can track the most effective parts of your campaign. UTM codes make it easier to optimize your Google Ads since you know exactly what’s working.
The trick, though, is to add your UTM codes at the campaign level when you set up your Google Ads, so you don’t have to do so manually for each ad URL. Otherwise, you can add them manually with Google’s UTM builder.
12. Set up conversion tracking.
Conversion tracking tells you exactly how many customers or leads you’ve acquired from your ad campaigns. It’s not mandatory to set up, but, without it, you’ll be guessing the ROI of your ads. Conversion tracking allows you to track sales (or other activities) on your website, app installs, or calls from your ads.
Manage and organize your ads with our free Google Ads Kit and Templates.
13. Integrate your Google Ads with your CRM.
There is something to be said about keeping all of your data in one place where you can track, analyze, and report on it. You already use your CRM to track contact data and lead flows. Integrating Google Ads with your CRM gives you the ability to track which ad campaigns are working for your audience so you can continue marketing to them with offers that are relevant.
Click to get our free guide on how to use Google Ads.
You can select from one of five campaign types on Google Ads. Let’s cover the optimal uses for each and why you might choose one over the other.
1. Search Ad Campaigns
Search ads are text ads that are displayed on Google results pages. As an example, a search for “pocket squares” returns sponsored results:
The benefit of search ads is that you’re displaying your ad in the place where most searchers look for information first — on Google. And Google shows your ad in the same format as other results (except for denoting it as an “Ad”), so users are accustomed to seeing and clicking on results.
Responsive Search Ads
Responsive search ads allow you to enter multiple versions of headlines and ad copy (15 and four variations, respectively) for Google to select the best performers to display to users. With traditional ads, you create one static version of your ad, using the same headline and description each time.
Responsive ads allow for a dynamic ad that is auto-tested until you arrive at the version that is best suited for your target audience — for Google, that means until you get the most clicks.
2. Display Ad Campaigns
Google has a network of websites in various industries and with an array of audiences that opt in to display Google Ads, known as the Google Display Network. The benefit to the website owner is that they’re paid per click or impression on the ads. The benefit to advertisers is that they can get their content in front of audiences that are aligned with their personas.
These are typically image ads that draw users’ attention away from the content on the webpage:
3. Video Ad Campaigns
videos. Remember, YouTube is a search engine, too. So the right keywords will place you in front of a video, disrupting the user’s behavior just enough to grab their attention.
Here’s a video advertisement that pops up in the middle of another video on how to tie a tie:
4. App Ad Campaigns
Google App Campaigns promote your mobile application through an ad displayed on Google Search Network, YouTube, Google Play, Google Display Network, and more.
You can run ads that encourage your audience to install your app or, if they already use it, to take a certain action within your app.
Unlike other ad types, you don’t design an App ad campaign. Instead, provide Google with your app’s information and audience, and place a bid. Google does the rest to get your app in front of the right eyes:
5. Shopping Ad Campaigns
Another type of Google Ad is Google Shopping Ad Campaigns. Shopping campaigns, like these other types of ads, are displayed on SERPs and include detailed product information such as price and product imagery. You can run a Shopping campaign through Google Merchant Center, where you input specific product information that Google pulls from to create your shopping ads.
Instead of marketing your brand as a whole, Shopping Ads allow you to promote specific products and product lines. That’s why, when you search for a particular product on Google, you’ll see ads for different brands pop up along the top and/or side. This is what I see when I search for “running shoes.” The ads at the top are Google Search ads, but the specific products advertised on the side are Shopping ads optimized for the keyword “running shoes”:
Google Ads Bidding Strategies
Once you’ve set up your ad campaigns and have tracking in place, it’s time to start bidding. Remember, your ability to rank in Google Ads depends on how you bid. While your bid amount will depend on your budget and goals, there are a few strategies and bid settings you should be aware of when launching your paid campaign.
1. Automated vs. Manual Bidding
You have two options when it comes to bidding on your keywords — automated and manual. Here’s how they work:
- Automated Bidding puts Google in the driver’s seat and allows the platform to adjust your bid based on your competitors. You can still set a maximum budget, and Google will work within a range to give you the best chance at winning the bid within those constraints.
- Manual Bidding lets you set the bid amounts for your ad groups and keywords, giving you the chance to reduce spending on low-performing ads.
2. Bidding on Branded Search Terms
Branded terms are those with your company or unique product name in them, like “HubSpot CRM.” There is much debate on whether to bid on your branded terms or not. On one side of the debate, bidding on terms that will likely yield organic results could be seen as a waste of money.
On the other side, bidding on these terms gives you domain over these search results pages and helps you convert prospects that are further along the flywheel. For instance, if I’ve been researching live chat tools and am heavily considering HubSpot’s Live Chat, then a simple search for “HubSpot live chat software” will yield precisely the result I’m looking for without the effort of scrolling.
The other argument in favor of bidding on your branded terms is that competitors may bid on them if you don’t, thereby taking up valuable real estate that should belong to you.
3. Cost Per Acquisition (CPA)
If the idea of spending money to convert prospects into leads makes you uneasy, then you can set a CPA instead and only pay when a user converts into a customer. While this bidding strategy could cost more, you can take comfort in knowing that you only pay when you acquire a paying customer. This strategy makes it easy to track and justify your ad spend.
Google Ads Best Practices
If you’ve tried unsuccessfully to advertise on Google, don’t give up. There are many reasons why your Google Ads could be underperforming. But, first, let’s cover some standard Google Ads best practices.
1. Use a PPC planning template.
Download this Template for Free
Using a planner keeps your PPC projects organized. With Google and HubSpot’s PPC Planning Template, you can view how your ads will appear online, see your character counts, and manage your campaigns all in one place.
2. Avoid broad keyword terms.
You really need to nail it for your keywords, which is why testing and tweaking should be a part of your strategy. If your keywords are too broad, Google will be placing your ad in front of the wrong audience, which means fewer clicks and a higher ad spend.
Review what’s working (i.e., which keywords generate clicks) and adjust them to best match your ads with your target audience. You likely won’t get the mix right the first time, but you should keep adding, removing, and tweaking keywords until you do.
Tip: Review the keyword strategies that we cover below.
3. Don’t run irrelevant ads.
If your ad doesn’t match the searcher’s intent, you won’t get enough clicks to justify your ad spend. Your headline and ad copy need to match the keywords you’re bidding on, and the solution your ad is marketing needs to solve whatever pain point that searcher is experiencing.
It’s a combination that will yield the results you’re looking for, and it may just be a few tweaks away. You have the option to create multiple ads per campaign — use this feature to split test which ads work best. Or, better yet, use Google’s Responsive Search Ads feature.
Tip: Read our best practices for ad copy.
4. Improve your Quality Score (QS).
Your Quality Score (QS) is how Google determines how your ad should rank.
The higher your QS, the better your rank and placements on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). If your quality score is low, you’ll have fewer eyeballs on your ad and fewer chances to convert.
Although Google lets you know your Quality Score, it’s your responsibility to improve it.
Tip: Keep reading to learn how to improve your QS.
5. Optimize your ad landing page.
Your efforts shouldn’t stop with your ad — the user experience after a click is equally essential.
What does your user see once they click your ad? Is your landing page optimized for conversions? Does the page solve your user’s pain point or answer their question? Your user should experience a seamless transition through the conversion process.
Tip: Review landing page best practices and implement them to increase your conversion rate.
Google Ads Tips
Now that you know how to use and set up a Google Ad campaign, here are a few short tips or best practices to follow to help you create successful campaigns.
We’ve covered these at length throughout this post, but their importance can’t be overstated. Use this as a checklist you can refer to again and again.
1. Have a clear goal.
It’s vital to define your objectives before you create your ad, instead of creating an ad first and then tweaking it to fit your objectives. Sit down with your marketing team to prepare an advertising plan and create SMART goals for your Google Ads campaigns.
2. Create a relevant landing page.
When prompted to add your URL when creating your ad, ensure that the URL you provide leads to a relevant landing page. If your ad is interesting enough to get clicked, you could undo all that great work if it directs them to a poor landing page.
Therefore, optimize your landing pages so that your ad will help convert a curious visitor into a paying customer. Check out our landing page guide so you know exactly how to create great landing pages.
3. Use the right keywords.
Keywords are super important, so it’s only right that you choose the best ones for your ad.
Long-tail keywords are some of the best types of keywords because they are very specific and can target one business.
For example, say you run a cat clinic. A generic keyword like ‘cat clinic’ won’t target people in your area, but something like ‘cat clinic in belvedere’ is more likely to attract the right audience.
4. Automate the process.
You can maximize conversions by optimizing the bidding process. Tools like Smart Bidding can increase or reduce bids for you, depending on the chance of success.
Therefore, you’ll spend money only when there’s a higher chance of success.
5. Use Ad Extensions.
Extensions can take your ad performance up a notch. These extensions allow you to specify your locations, services, goods, or sales promotions.
For example, you could include a telephone number in your ad so people can call you to inquire about your services right away.
6. Use negative keywords.
Google Ads allows you to include negative keywords. Using these keywords indicates what your product or service is not, thus preventing you from showing up in irrelevant SERPs.
Using the cat clinic example, you might only cater to cats and not dogs or other pets. In this case, you can exclude terms like ‘dogs’ and other qualifiers.
7. Measure and improve upon your strategy.
When you integrate your ads with Google Analytics, you can track important metrics like page popularity, the keywords that drive the most traffic, and more.
Collecting and analyzing these and other metrics will help you improve the quality of your ads, boost your conversions, and increase revenue over time.
Additional Resources to Optimize Your Google Ads
Your ad copy and headline is not the only component that will make your paid campaign successful. Getting a user to click is only the beginning … they should arrive on a landing page that’s optimized for conversion and then be taken to a Thank You page that tells them what to do next.
If you want your Google Ads to produce qualified leads and customers, then check out these additional resources and use them as guidelines as you set up your Google Ads campaign.
- Landing Page Best Practices will teach you how to set up a landing page that’s prime for conversions so you don’t waste those precious clicks.
- Optimized “Thank You” Pages shows you what to do with your new lead post-conversion, how to keep them on your site, and ways to maintain their attention.
- Tips for Mobile Google Ads teaches you the key differences between desktop and mobile ads and how to optimize both.
- Optimizing Google Ads Costs will show you how we, at HubSpot, maximize our Google Ads spend to get the best ROI.
- Quality Google Ads Examples That Convert shares examples of Google advertising campaigns that got it right.
Start Your Google Ads Campaign
Given its reach and authority, Google Ads should be a part of your paid strategy. Use the tips we covered to get started, and remember to refine and iterate as you go.
There’s no such thing as a Google Ads campaign that doesn’t work — there are only ones that need a bit more work. Using the strategy and information provided above, you have what you need to create a successful Google Ad campaign that drives clicks and converts leads.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in November 2015 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
Parts of a URL: A Short Guide
If your website is structured like a house, then your website’s URL is like that house’s address. It defines where your website lives online, similar to how your home address determines where you live in a neighborhood, helping your visitors easily find your site. URLs also help Google understand what your website’s pages are about.
There are several URL parts, and they’re discreetly important for optimizing your site’s user experience (UX) and SEO. To help you develop a concrete understanding of every part of a URL, let’s explore each of them in detail.
Below is an illustration of the basic parts of a URL. A URL will always have a scheme or protocol, a domain name, and path.
However, URLs may contain more attributes than the basic components listed above. Let’s take a comprehensive look at URL structure below.
The scheme (also called protocol) tells web servers which protocol to use when it accesses a page on your website.
Nowadays, HTTPS — which stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure — is the most common scheme. It tells your web browser to encrypt any information you enter onto the page, like your passwords or credit card information, so cybercriminals can’t access it. This security protocol protects your website visitors and implementing it will help your site rank better on Google. That’s why implementing SSL is a must-do on any technical SEO guide.
Other schemes you might see are mailto://, which can open your computer’s default email service provider to help you draft an email to the email address you entered in the URL, and ftp://, which is a standard protocol for transferring computer files between a client and server on a computer network.
If your website is like a house, your subdomains are like specific rooms in that house. A subdomain in a URL indicates which particular page of your website the web browser should serve up. For instance, subdomains like “blog” or “offers” will provide your website’s blog page or offers page.
Subdomains also bucket your website into its main content categories and shows Google and your visitors that there’s more information on your site than just a homepage.
3. Second-level Domain
Your second-level domain (SLD) is the name of your website. It helps people know they’re visiting a certain brand’s site. For instance, people who visit “mlb.com” know they’re on Major League Baseball’s website, without needing any more information.
4. Top-level Domain
The top-level domain (TLD) specifies what type of entity your organization registers as on the internet.
For example, “.com” is intended for commercial entities in the United States, so a lot of American businesses register with a top-level domain of “.com”. Similarly “.edu” is intended for academic institutions in the United States, so a lot of American colleges and universities register with a top-level domain of “.edu”.
A subdirectory — also known as a subfolder — helps people as well as web crawlers understand which particular section of a webpage they’re on.
For instance, if you own an online store that sells t-shirts, hats, and mugs, one of your website’s URLs could look like “https://shop.yourstore.com/hats”. Notice that the subdomain is “shop” and the subdirectory is “hats.” That means this URL would serve up the “Hats” page, which is a subfolder of the “Shop” page. T-shirts and mugs would be other subfolders of this page.
The port is a number used to specify a connection endpoint and to direct data to a specific service. Different servers will use different port numbers. This number is always associated with a host network address, like an IP address. For example an HTTP server is identified using 80, while an HTTPS server uses 443 as its port number.
The path specifies the location of the file or resource that the user wants to access. In the example below, the specified path would be the article “parth-url.”
Ever noticed a question mark displayed in some URLs when Google displays your search results? That question mark says that a specific query is being performed and is used to precede a query string. A query string specifies the parameters of the data being asked from a website’s database. We’ll dig into parameters next.
Parameters are the values being queried during a search. The parameter can be a number, encrypted value, search term or other data that can be found on the website. URL parameters contain a key and value, separated by an equal sign (=). A URL can contain multiple parameters, which are then each separated with an ampersand (&).
Written out, the structure would look like this:
UTM parameters are used to track your marketing or promotional efforts. Added to the ends of URLs these parameters can track how visitors are coming to your site and if they’re interacting with an associated marketing campaign.
Fragments are an optional component of URLs that are typically placed at the end with a hash (#). They indicate a specific location on the webpage like an ID or name attribute, but can also direct to other resources like a footer, or sidebar.
URL Structure: Subtle Yet Essential
Even though URLs might seem simple and arbitrary, they’re actually important for your website’s UX and SEO. And now that you understand each of the URL parts, check out the blog posts below to learn more about technical SEO.
Editor’s note: This article was originally published in October 2021 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
10 AI Tools to Streamline Your Social Media Strategy
As algorithms and trends evolve, managing social platforms effectively has become one of the biggest challenges for marketers.
Fortunately, social media AI tools have emerged as powerful solutions that can streamline the process and enhance overall performance.
In this blog post, we’ll introduce you to 10 cutting-edge social media AI tools that can help you optimize your social media strategy, boost productivity, and drive positive ROI.
From social listening and analysis tools to AI-powered content creation platforms, these tools can help you gain deeper insights into your audience.
So, let’s dive in and discover how these innovative AI tools can transform your social media strategy.
3 Ways to Implement AI in Your Social Media Strategy
The 10 Best Social Media AI Tools
3 Ways to Implement AI in Your Social Media Strategy
As a social media marketer, you wear many hats. You’re a content creator, analytics expert, and advertiser. Luckily, AI can help with each of these roles. Below we’ll explore how AI can augment your work and free up your time.
1. Use AI software to create basic post content.
Are you stuck writing filler posts instead of filming viral videos and creating detailed Instagram stories? Creating the right captions and tweets uses brainpower that can be better spent elsewhere.
Many marketers are using generative AI like ChatGPT to write full blog posts. However, there are specialized AI tools that can help social media marketers create the content they share online.
So how can AI craft and suggest a tweet for you? One subset of AI is called natural language generation (NLG). It can be trained to create written narratives out of data, like simple reports or fact sheets.
So let’s say your department produced a huge, data-driven report, and you want to create a few high-impact social shares from it. You can put your copy into AI platforms, like Copy.ai, and make sort posts with your critical data.
2. Monitor and analyze your social media channels with AI.
Writing content and responses is only half the battle of social media management. A huge portion of social media marketing is managing and monitoring social channels.
Luckily, AI can shoulder data-heavy tasks and help you make better marketing decisions. That’s because AI tools can collect information from millions of posts at scale and use that data to make predictions.
“Managing” a channel is a loaded term. A few of those tasks, like discovering high-impact influencers, can be handled by tools like Emplifi.
3. Create, optimize, and manage paid social media advertising.
As mentioned above, AI is capable of developing social media posts. The same can be said for ad copy that resonates with different audiences. AI can help you write ads optimized for clicks and conversions using predictive technology.
The 10 Best Social Media AI Tools
Lately makes generating posts easy. This tool can recognize context from a larger piece of content and create social media posts for promotion.
Within the Lately dashboard, you can use a simple form to generate a number of tweets at once related to a URL, document, or information posted in a text box.
You can also include campaign information and hashtags that you’d like to work into your social posts.
When you click “Generate Content,” the tool will create tweets related to it. Once your content is created, you can schedule your work and manage your projects.
Lately also analyzes the historical metrics of your pages to recommend the best posting times for maximum impact.
Best for: Creating post content.
What we like: Lately offers a standout AI feature that lets you quickly and easily generate social media by repurposing any long-form content.
Pricing: Lately offers three different plans. The Startly plan costs $29 per month. The Litely plan costs $49 per month, and you can opt for the Professional plan for $129 per month, which includes additional features.
Erica Mitchell, the Director of Marketing at Supporting Strategies, has successfully used Lately’s dashboard to enhance the company’s online presence.
Initially, she faced the challenge of managing over 179 social media channels for her company, which provides outsourced bookkeeping services with over 90 locations in the United States.
To simplify her workflow while ensuring compliant messaging at scale, Erica implemented Lately.
By using 35 Lately dashboards linked to all 179 social media channels, Erica was able to amplify Supporting Strategies’ organic social content.
This effort yielded impressive results, with the company experiencing a remarkable 2x increase in web traffic within just one year.
2. Sprout Social
If you use your social platforms for community management, Sprout Social’s automated technology can help you reply to fans, customers, or followers.
You can see and respond to posts directed at your company all through the Sprout Social dashboard. Sprout admins also have the power to manage direct messages through the platform.
In both the dashboard and direct message view, Sprout can analyze the wording and sentiment of a message and suggest an auto-response that you can use or tweak.
Although AI is not having a full conversation with all of your followers, automation makes the process faster.
Best for: Managing messages from customers.
What we like: Sprout Social’s Social Listening solution is a great feature that leverages the power of global conversations using AI-driven technology.
You can extract valuable insights from thousands of unfiltered thoughts, opinions, and feedback to enhance your strategy.
Pricing: Sprout Social’s Standard plan starts at $249 per month. The Professional plan is priced at $399 per month, and the Advanced plan is priced at $499 per month.
Goally, a company that offers a skill-building app and electronic devices for kids, has experienced success with Sprout Social’s Smart Inbox.
By leveraging the personalized customer care and engagement features of Smart Inbox, Goally has been able to maintain a 100% action rate on TikTok content, ensuring a high level of responsiveness and satisfaction among their target audience.
We can’t ignore HubSpot, either: HubSpot’s social media software is designed to simplify your social media content creation and posting process with the help of AI.
The software automatically creates engaging social media posts by analyzing the provided link’s metadata.
Anyone subscribed to HubSpot’s Marketing Hub or higher can use the tool, which can be found in the platform’s Social section.
Click “Create Post” and choose a social channel. Once the text box opens, attach a URL from your own site or another location.
Once you insert post attachments, like the URL, you’ll either see a short headline or a meta description of the page along with its link and a photo.
After the post copy is pulled and generated into the text box, you can tweak the copy to fit your social voice or add more depth or comprehensiveness to the overall post.
Best for: Creating post content.
What we like: HubSpot’s social media management tool facilitates seamless content publishing across LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Moreover, the software enables you to connect your social media accounts to your blog, automatically sharing content as it’s published.
Pricing: HubSpot’s pricing varies depending on how many users you have and whether you want to purchase just the Marketing or other Hubs.
However, HubSpot’s Starter pack begins at $50 per month and includes Marketing Hub functions plus the free features of HubSpot’s CRM.
Aermec North America is a leading brand that offers innovative HVAC solutions in the North American market. However, despite their high-quality products, they struggled with low social media engagement and few followers.
The company’s marketing team leveraged HubSpot Marketing to enhance its social efforts to address this issue.
Over one year, the company saw a remarkable 44% increase in its collective followers across all social media and a significant 60% surge in social media shares.
Writing the perfect copy, with the right word count for each platform, can take hours of your day. Copy.ai helps automate the process. All you need to do is follow these three steps.
- Specify what platform the copy will be for, including Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook.
- Give the AI context for your post. That could be a command related to the topic of your post or a larger portion of text, like a section of a blog post.
- Choose from multiple options and make the tweaks you see fit.
Best for: Creating post content.
What we like: If you need to write multiple posts for the same campaign, Copy.ai gives you multiple options that you can choose from — or you can schedule them all.
Pricing: Pro plans start at $36 per month.
Copy.ai can help you feature keywords that generate traffic and help your users find your posts.
Lucy Werner, PR and branding expert at The Wern Agency, is a frequent user of Copy.ai. She uses the rewrite with keyword function to help optimize her content for search.
“It will pop them in for you with a rejig at the click of a button,” she writes.
Emplifi, previously known as Socialbakers, is an AI-driven social media management platform that provides advanced audience insights.
The platform includes a unified content feed, an analytics dashboard, and smart scheduling tools.
If you’ve found that it takes too much time and resources to find, vet, track, and keep up relationships with influencers, Emplifis’ AI-driven influencer dashboard will streamline the processes.
When you click into the influencer dashboard, you can toggle between different social media platforms and categories, like “Food” or “Health.”
You can then see influencers that match the most with your audience, which Emplifi continuously analyzes.
Best for: Finding influencers to work with.
What we like: Emplifi Social Marketing Cloud offers top-of-the-line analytics and insights capabilities. The software allows you to generate custom reports to uncover actionable insights that drive real business results.
Pricing: Emplifi Social Marketing Cloud costs $200 per month, billed annually with a 10-profile limit. If you’d like to run 20 platforms, you can subscribe to Essential’s second tier for $400 per month, billed annually.
The Complete Social Marketing Cloud plan, which offers influencer tools, is available upon request.
Organix, the UK’s premier baby and toddler finger food brand, collaborated with influencers for their WonderDen campaign. The goal was to establish authentic and trustworthy connections between the brand and its community.
To manage the campaign, Organix leveraged the powerful Emplifi Social Marketing Cloud.
The software allowed the brand to track content performance across all social media touchpoints, including both influencer and brand-generated content.
As a result, Organix achieved a remarkable 34x engagement efficiency.
When it comes to sharing content, you can use Cortex to receive recommendations on when and how often to post based on historical metrics. Cortex can also generate detailed analyses of your competitors.
Cortex has a dashboard that shows off your posts and your social schedule. When you create a post, Cortext uses data to suggest posting times.
If you upload one or more photos, the software will also note colors that are most engaging for your audience to help you pick the best image for the post.
Best for: Analyzing your social media performance.
What we like: Cortex’s ability to monitor content trends and identify emerging keywords and layouts can help you stay ahead of the curve.
Additionally, you can leverage their advanced analytics and insights to better understand your audience.
Pricing: Prices are available upon request.
St. Regis, a luxury hospitality brand with a strong visual focus, recognized the need to improve their images to better connect with both existing and potential future guests.
By leveraging the advanced insights provided by Cortex, St. Regis saw an astounding 72x increase in engagement on Facebook. Their Instagram page also saw a significant 61% increase in followers on Instagram.
7. Linkfluence Radarly
You can also use something like Linkfluence‘s Radarly software to assess the mountains of data social media audiences produce daily.
That means measuring your brand impact, detecting trends, and pulling specific insights on your most important target audience.
With Radarly, you’re able to log on and see a dashboard that connects data from all of your accounts. In the first column, you can see a live feed of posts and tweets that acknowledge your brand name or handle in some way.
Then in the next columns, you can see scoring that explains how negatively or positively people are talking about you on social.
You’ll also view which platforms people are discussing you most on and data about your audiences, such as interests, languages, or hashtags they’re using.
Best for: Analyzing your social media performance.
What we like: The social listening platform analyzes live streams of social data to give you a better understanding of your customers, including their behavior and sentiment.
Pricing: Prices are available upon request.
Pernod Ricard, one of the world’s largest spirits brands, wanted to leverage social data and consumer insights to drive business decisions.
With the help of Linkfluence’s advanced social listening and contextual analysis platform, Pernod Ricard gained a comprehensive understanding of its target audience.
This enabled the company to tailor its products and marketing efforts accordingly. This customer-centric approach drove Pernod Ricard’s annual sales to a staggering €8,987 Million in 2018.
Phrasee pulls data from past marketing assets, including emails, social media copy, and other online posts, to determine the most and least effective.
From there, Phrasee can show you the weak or strong copy-related aspects of past ads. You can then draft prospective copy and test its effectiveness within the software. You can also use ad copy that the software suggests for you.
Best for: Optimizing social media advertising.
What we like: Phrasee’s AI-powered technology allows you to generate, optimize, automate, and analyze marketing messages in real time.
Pricing: Prices are available upon request.
Wowcher, a prominent ecommerce brand in the UK, partnered with Phrasee to enhance its social media marketing.
Wowcher used Phrasee’s AI-driven content creation software to optimize its Facebook and Instagram ad campaigns. Within a few campaigns, the company achieved a remarkable 31.2% decrease in cost per lead (CPL).
AI can tackle some of the nitty-gritty ad management tasks, like optimizing bids, divvying up a budget, and recommending channels to help your ad perform.
Pattern89 is an AI marketing tool that provides recommendations on almost every aspect of your ads, including recommendations for adjusting your spend and audience targeting to massively increase performance.
When you log into the tool, you’ll see a screen filled with alerts and suggestions related to improving your ad’s effectiveness. If you’d like to follow the platform’s suggestions, you can click “Show me how” to learn how to make ad adjustments.
If the platform shows you a “Do this automatically” button next to a suggestion, you can click that to have the platform make the adjustment.
Aside from allowing you to monitor live and completed ads, the tool also offers a Creative Ads Manager. This allows you to search and analyze past ads with filters including ad set, campaign objective, audience, and other ad targets.
Best for: Optimizing social media advertising.
What we like: Pattern89 is a top pick if you want to conduct in-depth analyses of customer behaviors on social media, particularly on platforms like Facebook and Instagram.
Pricing: Prices are available upon request.
SnapShyft is a marketplace that offers flexible staffing solutions for the food service and hospitality industries. The company partnered with Pattern89 to enhance its marketing efforts and increase conversions.
Using Pattern89’s marketing AI, SnapShyft was able to analyze ad creative and audience engagement in real time, optimizing its in-flight campaigns for maximum impact.
In just four months, Pattern89 drove 75% of new add-to-carts and 96% of new checkout for SnapShyft.
LocaliQ, previously known as Wordstream, is an innovative social media marketing tool designed to help you reach potential customers through social ads.
With LocaliQ, you can collaborate with their team to create a tailored social ad strategy that aligns with your unique objectives.
The LocaliQ platform provides a unified lead dashboard, allowing you to monitor and analyze your campaign’s performance.
Additionally, you can use the platform to generate leads, connect with prospects, access reports, and automate your marketing initiatives with ease.
Best for: Optimizing social media advertising.
What we like: Using LocaliQ’s XMO technology, you can allocate one budget for your business objectives and automatically adjust spending across multiple channels based on real-time performance data.
Pricing: Pricing is available upon request.
Aubuchon Homes is a leading luxury home design company based in Southwest Florida. Despite its reputation for exceptional design, the company faced challenges in generating new leads.
To address this issue, Aubuchon Homes sought the expertise of LocaliQ.
Leveraging LocaliQ’s Smart Social ads tools, Aubuchon Homes drove remarkable results quickly. The targeted advertising campaigns drove a 300% increase in leads, with the new leads being of higher quality.
As a result, the company saw a 42% increase in the average home sale price, leading to greater revenue and profitability.
AI for Every Social Media Marketer
If artificial intelligence still seems like an overwhelming topic, you’re not the only one who might be intimidated by it. After all, we’re marketers, not data scientists.
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5 Challenges Marketers Face in Understanding Audiences [New Data + Market Researcher Tips]
As customer behavior constantly changes, marketers face an ongoing challenge to keep up with their audiences. Personalization and need fulfillment are essential to the success of any marketing campaign, and failing to understand what your customers want could result in lost revenue for your business.
Marketers must stay in touch with evolving customer behavior and preferences to ensure their campaigns resonate with their customers. In this blog post, we’ll highlight the top challenges marketers face in understanding audiences from HubSpot’s very own 2023 State of Marketing Report to provide data-driven tips for overcoming them.
Challenges Marketers Face in Understanding Audiences
1. Identifying the target audience.
Surveyed marketers reported that their biggest social media challenges are consistently creating engaging content (22%), gaining and keeping followers (22%), and reaching their target audience (21%).
The special thing about these challenges is that the first two are contingent on the third.
Creating engaging content that grows your following is nearly impossible without understanding the target audience. Knowing exactly who you’re making content for is a foundational understanding marketers need.
Marketers can conduct more thorough market research to gather data on their target audience to gain a more concise understanding. They can use this data to create buyer personas and plan content for your ideal customer. These personas should be based on recent data and insights from trustworthy surveys, interviews, and other research methods.
2. Understanding customer behavior.
Another challenge that marketers face is understanding their customers’ behaviors. Understanding where they spend their time online, what they like, and what they don’t like is essential to creating effective marketing campaigns. You want to see how they prefer to view your content, the frequency with which they do it, and what will keep them returning to your business.
To overcome this challenge, marketers can use tools like Google Analytics or heat maps to gather data on customer behavior. They can use this data to analyze their customers’ website actions, track engagement, and identify areas for improvement. Marketers can also use social listening tools like Hootsuite to monitor conversations around their brand on social media.
3. Creating content that resonates with the audience.
Creating content that resonates with the audience is a significant challenge for many marketers. They may struggle to find topics their target audience is interested in or may not know how to write content that speaks to them.
For example, many customers in recent years have been looking for brands that share content that reflects corporate social responsibility on topics like social justice, sustainability, or ethical workplace practices. Current-day consumers, especially Millennials and Gen Z, want to buy from companies that display values and a purpose that resonates with them.
There’s proven potential in sharing values-based content with customers. According to HubSpot’s State of Marketing Report, 16% of marketers plan to get their company talking about values this year for the first time, and 89% of those who already do plan to increase or maintain their investment in this approach.
Marketers can use the data gathered on their target audience to better connect with the customer to create content that speaks to their interests and values. And to make things easier, they can also leverage tools like surveys or customer feedback to see what they want from your marketing content. Once you’ve identified topics your target audience is interested in, create high-quality content such as blog posts, videos, infographics, or ebooks based on the responses.
4. Measuring the success of marketing campaigns.
Measuring the success of marketing campaigns is another challenge faced by marketers. Without tracking the performance of their campaigns, it is impossible to know if they are effectively targeted towards their audience.
Marketers can set specific, measurable, and achievable campaign goals. They can use tools like HubSpot’s Marketing Analytics to track the performance of their campaigns and adjust them as necessary to achieve their goals. By monitoring key performance indicators (KPIs) like website traffic, lead conversions, click-through rates, and social media engagement, marketers can measure the success of their campaigns and optimize their strategies accordingly.
5. Keeping up with the latest marketing trends
Finally, keeping up with the latest marketing trends can be tedious for marketers. Digital marketing innovation and news is constantly changing, and marketers must keep up to ensure their campaigns are relevant and useful to the audience they’re trying to reach.
To keep up with these trends, marketers can follow industry blogs and social media accounts to stay informed of the latest developments in their niche. By keeping up-to-date on the latest marketing trends and implementing best practices, marketers can stay ahead of the competition.
Understanding your audience helps you cater to them.
Understanding the audience is critical to the success of any marketing campaign. By overcoming these roadblocks, marketers can create campaigns that resonate with their target audience and potentially drive engagement and conversions. Remember to conduct market research, monitor customer behavior, and stay up-to-date on the latest marketing trends. Marketers can overcome these challenges by following these best practices and achieving marketing success.