Believe it or not, we are just a few short weeks away from the start of the 2014 holiday shopping season.
If you’re like a lot of small business owners, you may already be thinking about how you can bring more people into your store or office, and make the most of this valuable time of year.
To set yourself up for success, you’ll need to make sure you have a plan to connect with potential customers in all the places that matter to them.
Find out why mobile will be more important than ever during the 2014 shopping season, and get caught up on the other stories you might have missed, in this week’s marketing news roundup.
According to a new report from Deloitte this week, mobile is expected to have a major influence on holiday purchases, both on and offline, during the upcoming holiday season.
The report projects that mobile will influence 50 percent of brick and mortar sales.
Overall, 84 percent of shoppers are expected to use some digital tools — including smartphones, tablets, and smartphones — when planning their holiday shopping.
Bottom Line: The influence of mobile will likely come in many forms for your small business this holiday season.
When it comes to your email marketing, you’ll need to keep in mind that more than half of all emails are read on a mobile device. If you plan to use email to get the word out about a special offer or a holiday event, you should keep these mobile best practices in mind.
Mobile will also play a role in your social media marketing. Many consumers will use sites like Facebook and Twitter to contact your business directly. Remember to monitor your social media activity, and look for opportunities to connect with fans and followers when they’re on-the-go.
It’s likely that many of your potential customers will also use their devices to search for your business as well. These searches can result in immediate action, which could mean more people visiting your store throughout the holiday season.
Pinterest confirmed plans for a new advertising platform this week, which will include new targeting and tracking features for advertisers.
One of the biggest additions is the ability to target people in your existing user base on Pinterest. Similar to Facebook’s Custom Audiences feature, the new feature would allow advertisers to use their existing email list to create an audience to target on Pinterest.
In addition to targeting, Pinterest has also confirmed that it will be rolling out new tools for tracking the results of your ad. This will include the ability to add a pixel to your website, to enable Pinterest to easily track when people are clicking through from Pinterest to make a purchase.
Bottom Line: Pinterest has already proven to be a powerful platform for helping brands connect with their audience and to drive business results.
Since launching Promoted Pins last October, the social network has been learning a lot about how advertising can be used to boost marketing results, without disrupting the experience it offers its users.
If Pinterest is already a major part of your social media strategy, you’ll definitely want to keep an eye out for the new advertising features.
Facebook added a new feature for page administrators this week, which will make it easier to keep track of your Page’s activity while using the site.
With the new update, Facebook will add a new module in the upper-right hand corner of admins’ timelines, which will show a snapshot of your page’s activity — including weekly figures for new page likes and average post reach.
The module will also display recent posts, and include data about the number of users that saw and engaged with each post.
Bottom Line: As a busy small business owner, it can be hard to find the time to keep up with all of your different social media responsibilities. This includes finding time to post, but also involves finding time to track your results to see what’s working, what’s not, and what you could be doing differently.
One of your best resources for measuring results on Facebook will be your Facebook Insights. Here, you can see valuable details about your audience, the content you share, and even find out the best time to post.
The new module will provide a snapshot of your page’s performance, but you should also make sure to review your Insights and use this information to improve your posting strategy over time.
What top stories caught your attention this week? Let us know in the comments below.