Google Ads: How To Reduce Wasted Spend & Improve Performance

Focus on conversions, not clicks Whilst for brand awareness purposes clicks and impressions can be good metrics to measure performance, they should not be your priority focus. Instead, we recommend focusing your Google Ads reporting around four key metrics that will help you gather a greater understanding of how you can reduce wasted ad spend from your Google Ad campaigns: Conversions – the number of tracked enquiries, whether that be from calls, form submissions or purchases Conversion rate – the percentage of people that convert after clicking on your ads. Cost per conversion – the cost it takes to generate one enquiry / purchase. Return on Ad Spend (ROAS) – this will be dictated by how much an enquiry / purchase is worth for your business. For example, if an enquiry as an avg. value of £3, and your ad spend was £1, you ROAS would be 3:1. Focusing on these four metrics will transform not only how your measure the success of your Google Ads campaigns, but also how you build campaigns moving forward. For example; if a particular keyword has only generated one enquiry from over 500 clicks, we could assume one of two things in this scenario: The search term you are targeting is not relevant to what you are offering visitors and should be paused. Your website’s landing page is not satisfying the needs of the searcher. Assuming a cost per click of £1.50, simply pausing this keyword could save your business around £750 without any detrimental impact on your conversions. This highlights the importance of closely monitoring your keywords to ensure that they are performing to achieve your business objectives.   Optimise your landing pages As we’ve mentioned previously, your website’s landing page may not be satisfying the needs of your visitors. Ensuring the quality of your landing page is not only vital to improving the effectiveness of your Google Ads targeting, but also to the conversion process. For example, if a customer was looking for a red bike, but your landing page was only offering blue ones, they are unlikely to convert – covering your bases and ensuring an online experience that delights your potential customers will go a long way towards achieving Google Ads success. When it comes to optimising your landing pages, it’s incredibly important to have a firm understanding of how your visitors are interacting with your content. This is where heat mapping tools such as Crazy Egg and Hotjar come in. Heat map platforms allow you to monitor exactly how your customers interact with a given page; where they click, where they don’t click, and how far they scroll are all tracked, and can provide you with valuable insight in to how to improve the performance of your landing pages. For example, if you find visitors are not scrolling far enough to reach the information you need them to interact with, you could consider pushing this further up the page, or make it more accessible for visitors to quickly navigate to the content they are looking for with anchor links. When creating landing pages for Google Ads, there are a number of best practices we recommend your business follows: Ensure the title of the page links to the headline of your advertising – this will not only help your advertising’s quality scores, but create a point of connection that keeps your visitors on your site for longer. Use calls to action – some customers may not know what the next step should be in continuing their journey on your landing page, make it as clear as possible through calls to action. Create dedicated landing pages for each ad group – ensure your landing pages are as relevant as possible by creating dedicated pages for each keyword grouping. In a realistic world this won’t always be possible, so make sure to have a specific landing pager per campaign at a minimum. Keep the page clean and easy to read – don’t overload your visitors with information. Keep it short and sweet and give them exactly what they are looking for. Give your customers options in how they convert – not all of your customers will want to fill in a form to get in touch with your business, ensure that an email address and phone number are available on your landing pages to make it as easy as possible for customers to contact your business. Be mobile friendly – whilst not as prevalent for every industry, being more mobile-first will make a huge difference in your Google Ads’ conversion rates. Nearly 60% of searches conducted within a year are done so via a mobile device, if you are not tailoring your content to this audience, you could be potentially losing out on thousands in missed opportunity. To learn more about designing landing pages that convert – have a chat with our expert team. Get your match type right Keyword match types allow your business to control when your advertising shows for a particular search term. There are four keyword match types that can be used to either broaden or tighten your campaign’s targeting, each has its own strengths and weaknesses. Here’s what each one means: Broad match – the default match type. A keyword that has been set to broad match will show if the keywords are used in the search, regardless of the order. Whilst this can be useful for building brand awareness, broad match keywords can lead to quickly exhausted budgets as your keywords are seen more frequently, and not always for relevant searches. Broad match modifier – similar to broad match, except that the broad match modifier option only shows ads in searches including the words you have designated with a + sign or close variations of them. For example, you could choose a broad match modifier such as ‘marketing +agency’ to ensure every search term your ad shows for includes the word ‘agency’. Phrase match – shows for searches that match a phrase, or are close variations of that phrase. This leads to stronger targeting, and provides more control that may be afforded from solely using broad match. To add a phrase match keyword, simply add “ ” to either side of your keyword. Exact match – shows your ad on searches that match the exact term or are close variations of that exact term. This leads to even stronger targeting, however, you may see a drop in the number of clicks and impressions your Google Ads campaign receives. To add an exact match keyword, add [ ] to either side of your keyword. In our experience, we recommend utilising phrase and exact match for the majority of your keyword targeting, especially if your target search terms could have multiple interpretations for different industries. Ensure you are tracking EVERYTHING How can you be sure on the success of your Google Ads performance if you are not accurately tracking how visitors interact with your website once they’ve clicked on your ad? This is a common initial issue for a number of businesses we support, and making one or two small changes to your website tracking can have massive impacts on how you judge the performance of your campaigns. Google Tag Manager Google Tag Manager is an all-in-one platform to store all of your website tracking in one easy to use place. Within Google Tag Manager you can easily create Google Ads tracking to monitor all types of enquiries, including form submissions, content downloads and product purchases. Learn more about Google Tag Manager Google Analytics Goals Goals allow your business to measure how well your website achieves its target objectives, recording the performance of your traffic channels in achieving them. To ensure that you are accurately measuring the performance of your campaigns, you can directly import your goals in to Google Ads to ensure comprehensive tracking. Learn more about Google Analytics goals   Trial Google’s automated bid strategies To better achieve your marketing objectives in Google Ads, the platform now provides a number of automated bid strategies which can help your business to better utilise its ad budget. Google offers six different automated bid strategies to achieve your goals: Maximise Clicks – automatically sets your bids to help get as many clicks as possible within your budget. Target Impression Share – automatically sets bids with the goal of showing your ad on the absolute top of the page, on the top of the page or anywhere on the page of Google search results. Target CPA – automatically sets bids to help get as many conversions as possible at the target cost per action (CPA) that you set. Target ROAS – automatically sets bids to help to get as much conversion value as possible at the target return on ad spend (ROAS) that you set. Maximise Conversions – automatically sets bids to help you get the most conversions for your campaign while spending your budget. Maximise Conversion Value – automatically sets bids to help you get the most conversion value for your campaign while spending your budget. With the aim of optimising your budgets and improving enquiries, we would advocate that your business uses the Maximise Conversions bid strategy. However, you will first need to ensure that your website is currently setup to track conversions, whether that be through Google Tag Manager or Google Analytics. Learn more about how Maximise Conversions works. Free Google Ads audit To help your business reduce its wasted ad spend and improve the conversions of your campaigns, we are offering a free Google Ads audit. Our UK Search Awards shortlisted experts are hand to provide you with valuable insights to help your business get more from Google Ads. Learn more

Share of Voice – The Argument For Not Cutting Your Marketing Budgets

Share of Voice Share of Voice (SoV) is a measure of the market your brand owns compared to your competitors, and could be your secret weapon for growth in the coming months and years. With all things being equal, a business that has a Share of Voice greater than its Share of Market (SoM) is likely to gain a higher market share in the long run. Why is this? Well, because over time, as you continue your marketing activities, your brand recognition and equity will only grow, affording you a greater market share. In every market, there will be an equilibrium between your SoV and SoM, which will dictate your position. Gradually as you continue to overspend your Share of Voice, your business will eventually move closer towards the equilibrium, naturally increasing your market share.   Excess Share of Voice Excess Share of Voice (ESoV) is calculated as Share of Voice – Share of Market. On average, research company Nielson have found that a 10 point difference between Share of Voice and Share of Market leads to 0.5% of extra market share growth. So, a brand with a market share of 20.5% with an Excess Share of Voice of 10 points would grow to 21% market share over a year. Of course a number of other factors such as the size of the competition and quality of your campaigns will contribute to your overall success, but the premise remains sound. For those that are looking to grow, you will need to outspend your competition; and there’s no better time to do it. As your competition looks to review their spending, one of the first expected cuts will likely be to marketing – with many businesses either reducing or pausing their marketing activities. With a reduced Share of Voice, your competition is naturally likely to see their Share of Market also reduce, as it follows in line with the market equilibrium. This represents a huge opportunity for your business to increase its share of the market, without needing to increase spend to do so. Simply staying the course, and perhaps even increasing your marketing spend could see your business’ market share improve in the long-term. Long-Term Growth This is an opinion held by marketing experts Les Binet & Peter Field, who believe that Excess Share of Voice matters now more than ever when looking to achieve marketing effectiveness. Binet and Field’s core principles of B2B growth are to build a strong brand, expand the customer base, maximise mental availability, harness the power of emotion, budget for growth, and balance the budget between brand building and activation. Just like in B2C. Binet has gone on to say: “Advertising does work in B2B… Share of Voice is a relevant metric. How fast a brand grows to a very large extent depends on its share of voice and in particular whether its share of voice is above or below its share of market.” Increasing your Share of Voice and creating a brand for your business will be one of your key drivers for long-term growth and success. But, that doesn’t mean that you should ignore short-term tactics completely. Whilst brand building activities will go on to create brand equity and influence future sales, your business will still require a tightly targeted, short-term sales activation strategy that will exploit the brand equity that you have built. According to Binet & Field’s research, the best approach to take is a 60:40 split between long-term brand building and short-term sales activation. Combining these two factors, and ensuring a strong marketing budget, will not only help you in the coming months, but also put your business in a strong position to navigate the coming years as well. Example: Lidl A fantastic example of the benefits of working on your brand, and increasing your Share of Voice comes from German FMCG giant; Lidl. Despite being in the UK since 1994, Lidl had previously struggled to gain a foothold in the British market, with larger brands such as Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Asda taking the majority of the Share of Market. As Marketing Week columnist Mark Ritson explains in the below Effy case study – Lidl struggled to grow its market share any higher than 3% by solely focusing on the low pricing of its products. In fact, the business’ low-price offering lead consumers to assume it was low in quality too. Launching a major advertising campaign in 2014, outspending its Share of Voice led to dramatic changes in the company’s fortunes – increase Share of Voice from 5% to 19%, deliver £2.7bn in incremental sales! How to improve your Share of Voice To improve your Share of Voice, we recommend the following tips: Go broad – this may go against your first instincts, but using a blanket approach to your brand-building will help to ensure that your business covers all bases. Of course, this does not mean that your business should target its advertising to the entire nation, but rather not get caught up in the slight differences between certain core groups and industries. Be concise – when building your brand, you need to communicate your core purpose simply and effectively. A great example of this in action is Morrisons’ ‘Feed the Nation’ campaign, providing all the context you need as to what Morrisons aims to deliver and to who in the current climate. Advertise – The main way to quickly and effectively grow your Share of Voice is to advertise. Go big, and go broad. For years now, digital marketing has extolled the virtues of targeted, ROI-focused campaigns as the only way to be effective online, however, this is not the case. Due to current events, the majority of the UK has been thrust into an online environment, providing your business with a bigger audience than ever before to improve your brand awareness and recognition, without needing to break the bank. Social media advertising offers a whole raft of opportunities to build closer relationships with your audience and prospects for a low cost – especially channels such as Facebook and Twitter. LinkedIn can provide organisations within the B2B sector with an opportunity to communicate broadly to potential customers; something that is not always possible in an offline environment. As well as Social advertising, the Google Display Network provides you with the opportunity to showcase your business on millions of websites across the web, with a host of targeting options to ensure that your brand is communicating effectively with your target audience. To learn more about how your business can advertise effectively online, and grow your organisation’s Share of Voice, speak to one of our expert marketing consultants today.
coronavirus, covid-19

How To Adapt & Evolve Your 2020 Marketing Strategy For COVID-19

During this period, there will be brands that take advantage of the situation, and those who are looking to scale back their marketing activities. Whilst understandable, we do not recommend those in the latter category to scale back their marketing completely. With digital adoption reaching new heights, online marketing is now more important than ever, and it’s a good time to put yourselves in a stronger position long-term and increase your share of voice against your competitors. Intelligent brands will be effectively communicating and continue to be authentic in their messaging. Focusing on messaging for your brand purpose and implementing an focused marketing strategy will provide you with a strong return on investment and growth in the long term. Brands with strong brand awareness and relationships with their customers will recover the quickest. A global survey of more than 35,000 consumers completed by Kantar found that: ONLY 8% of consumers believe brands should stop advertising due to the Coronavirus outbreak. With more people working from home (and being online), it is certain that consumers will use e-commerce sites more frequently. With this change, we are beginning to see a trend in brands now increasingly leveraging their online presence and raising their advertising spend on digital channels such as social media and Google Ads. “Brand health becomes vulnerable when companies stop advertising,” says Kantar Insights global head of media, Jane Ostler. “If they do this for longer than six months it destroys both short- and long-term health.” Do not use the outside influence of the Coronavirus to exploit consumer behaviour through marketing messaging. Remember to lead the way, be innovative but mindful of tone and ask yourself “How would you respond to this tone of messaging?” As brands continue to increase their online presence, users are now becoming increasingly aware of businesses that are taking an ethical, empathetic approach to their marketing communications, a strategy in the long run which can be beneficial to your brand and business. With communities and businesses needing to come together more than ever, you should really look at what your values are as a company: How are you supporting your current customers/ employees? How are you planning for the future? Once this has been understood, your next mission is to understand how you can effectively market your brand purpose to your consumers. Often, we see big brands focusing on new customers, offering free delivery or incentives. However, we can see a major shift in marketing with the focus on current customers pushing the message ‘existing customers come first!’ This is an excellent approach for long-term growth. It costs far less to keep an existing customer than it does to acquire a new one, and showing you value your current customers can help encourage them remain a customer for life. If you can connect with your existing customers in an authentic way, creating an emotional resonance, your business will be in a better position than your competitors during this time. A good example of this is Ocado:     It’s also essential to let customers know what you are doing to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and how you can help them during this unpredicted time. Last week we saw, TV subscription giant, Sky reveal a number of extra services that will be made available to their existing customers for free. “Our first priority is ensuring our customers continue to get the very best service we can provide. We’d love more people to experience Sky, but for the time being we’re focusing our attention and resources on making sure we do our very best for our existing customers.” Although the offer available is marketed towards current customers; new consumers will sub-consciously remember the brand and its actions during this time; ultimately providing Sky with future opportunities. So, what should brands be doing? Turn this situation into an opportunity to do something new! Look at your budgets and how these can be spent most effectively. Ask yourself which platforms will your customers be utilising the most, and how can you appropriately communicate with them on these platforms? Start by evaluating your brand’s media, messaging and touchpoints. How can you take your existing services or solutions and provide them in an online environment? For example, if your marketing objective is to grow your online following, perhaps activities such as thought leadership videos could increase engagement and brand awareness. It has been reported in China that Luxury brands are now embracing live streaming, not only with product demonstrations, but also entertainment – led by influencers presenting live. The priority for these brands is not to make immediate sales, but to stay relevant in an evolving situation, delighting potential customers – improving their share of voice and recognition. Live streaming is a great technology to allow brands to communicate with their customers at a more personal level, creating a community. Whether you are live streaming for educational purposes, promoting a product or showing a before and after transformation, live streaming is an inexpensive way to increase your business and customer bond. With various event organisers cancelling or postponing everything from industry gatherings to music festivals the demand for virtual events will increase. 41% of more than 1,000 mid-level and senior marketers considered live events to be the most crucial marketing channel in a survey conducted by survey conducted by event software Bizzabo. Rather than lose out on the channel completely, hosting webinars, live streaming and daily videos are a fantastic way to ensure that you brand continues to communicate and engage with your target audience in a face to face environment. There is a lot of opportunity for events companies to evolve the services they offer, and push forward with their digital transformation. Key takeaways for marketing in the age of COVID-19. Adapt and Evolve Embrace digital transformation Lead the way but be mindful of tone Pay attention to the changes of consumer behaviour and lifestyles Don’t stop marketing! Marketing Investment will pay for itself in the long term Our Final Message While the current situation continues, we will continue to see marketing focus turn towards variables that can be controlled, such as customer care. When planning your next marketing strategy remember to stay true to your brand’s roots, deliver lasting impressions that focus on your customer’s wellbeing. To learn more about how your business should market during COVID-19, make sure to follow us on social. We will soon also be launching a webinar series for businesses to learn How To Do More With Your Budget. Our marketing gurus are going to share some of our best tips for Google Ads, Content Creation and Social Media to ensure that your business continues to see results during the coming months!

Oro Inc. announces Generate UK as first UK OroCommerce Solution Partner

Joe Baily, Founder and Managing Director of Generate UK commented “In the UK, the B2B E-Commerce industry has truly exploded, companies are continually trying to find ways to reduce the cost whilst trying to build value for loyal multichannel B2B customers. To be the first UK Partner of OROInc, industry leaders in open-source business application with a fully loaded enterprise level ecommerce system represents a huge opportunity for Generate UK. It enables us to support our clients to build solutions and services to help them meet their customers’ demands whilst growing their market share. In times of uncertainty more people are looking to futureproof their organisations and look for new ways to achieve their objectives, the solutions that OroCommerce can provide support this. Whether you are looking for a new platform or to replatform, OroCommerce can drive positive change with their E-Commerce solutions. This new partnership with OroCommerce stands to be a fantastic answer for some of our current clients but also for many new ones out there. We are excited to get started!” Generate UK is a multi-award-winning marketing agency based in the heart of the Thames Valley, United Kingdom. They design and develop highly creative and technical assets and executive strategic marketing activities for their clients. This new partnership means Generate UK can support customers achieve their online sales objectives with the latest developments in B2B and ERP technology. Both organisations are delighted with this partnership and look forward to further developing this market together. For more information, visit: or contact Generate UK via email  
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A Guide to Purpose Led (Re)Branding & How We Created Our Own

This blog outlines the key steps to purpose-led (re)branding success. We’ll also talk through how we’ve used this process for our own recent brand update. Some might call this a brand refresh and others a rebrand; either way it’s evolution rather than a revolution. Step 1: Understanding Who You Are Brand purpose has become a bit of a buzz phrase over the last couple of years. Companies have started looking for new ways to differentiate themselves from the competition (other than price, product quality and customer service) and consumers have become more conscious of the products that they are buying and the brands that they are buying from. So, if purpose is the foundation of what makes a brand relevant and necessary, you need to understand the audience that you are selling to and ensure your values align. This is not a new concept. There is a famous video of Steve Jobs in 1997 exploring the core value of Apple in a presentation. In it, he makes it clear that Apple aren’t a company that make computers – obviously they do – but they are in fact a company that “believes people with passion can change the world for the better”, and Apple helps them do that.     According to Simon Sinek, the author of the book “Start with Why”, this is the approach taken by the world’s most successful and pioneering business leaders. By evaluating these leaders, he created the concept of the Golden Circle: Why, How, What. His Ted Talk with over 48 million views is well worth a watch, and in it he outlines that people don’t buy what you do, but why you do it.     There are pitfalls which companies can and have fallen into when using this method, as outlined in this blog on UX Planet and this one on Campaign. As such brand purpose doesn’t have to be about changing the world or doing good for society, but about answering customer needs. That’s why understanding who you are, what you stand for and why you are in business, along with what your customers are really looking for is vital to the branding process. Without going through this exercise, you run the risk of being just another brand.   TIP: Keep asking yourself “why” and “so what”? – you’ll eventually get to the real reason!   Our Journey In 2020, we’ll be launching our own purpose-led rebrand. Here, we outline what we did at each stage of the process. In our own rebranding process, we re-explored why the business was established in the first place. When our Managing Director, Joe Baily, created the business, the core value was to help clients better leverage marketing to drive growth within their own businesses. This continues to be the key driver behind our ethos today, and therefore it sits at the centre of our brand. As a result, this is a simplified version of our golden circle: Why? Brand Purpose: We generate business growth through marketing How? We spend time focusing on our clients’ business objectives and set up, allowing us to advise, create and deliver marketing and development solutions at any stage of a marketing process – from strategy development, design and marketing through to supporting your technology platforms. What? Ultimately, our services are the same as a lot of full service digitally focused marketing agencies. Through projects or retainers, we provide a range of marketing and communication, website design, development and support services. As you can see, it’s not what we do that makes us different, or the how, but why! Step 2: Research So, you think you understand who you are and what the purpose of the brand is, but have you actually done anything to validate this? At the end of the day most brands can only exist by driving revenue, and for that you need a market to operate in and customers to buy from you. Research is vital to this validation process and ensuring that your brand purpose differentiates you from the competition. Firstly, it is important to carry out market research. While this should in theory be a detailed and tailored research piece, surveying your key audience (this guide is helpful to understand what brand market research is and why you should be doing it properly), we’re well aware that it isn’t always possible. By taking time to talk to your customers or people you want to be your customers, as well as the people that interact with them on a regular basis, you can obtain objective, insight-based ideas and recommendations. These can then be used to make confident and informed judgements on your brand positioning. Secondly, it’s important to review how your competitors are positioning themselves. If every business has the same messaging, how do you differentiate yourself? With purpose. If your competition has the same purpose, work out why you are different and include this in your positioning. Our Journey By talking to our customers, exploring their needs and objectives, and analysing where we make the biggest impact for our most successful customers, we have been able to understand that our target audience wants business growth, and a partner to support them in achieving that growth. When reviewing our competitors locally, regionally and nationally, we believe that our purpose is the thing that differentiates us from most agencies that look to provide similar support with campaign or project specific objectives. As a result, we know that our brand purpose is right for us, and that we can develop messaging around understanding our customers’ business and their specific objectives. Step 3: Creating & Developing Concepts So, you’ve understood who you are, what your customers want and checked that you really do differentiate yourself from the competition. This has probably given you a good idea of how to position your brand. So now it’s time to get creative and design the different brand elements that will support this purpose. There is of course the one thing that most people instantly think of when it comes to branding, the logo. But, as we know, branding is much more than that. Articulating your brand purpose should be presented both visually (logo, font type, colour palette, imagery etc) and through messaging (both the words you use and the tone of voice you use around them).  While it is important that your logo reflects your brand purpose, it’s actually more important to focus on your messaging.   TIP: Start articulating the messaging first and then use this in your design brief – it’ll make sure your visual brand reflects your purpose.   When it does come to the visuals, remember that the process is a journey of exploration and evolution. It’s very unlikely that the first concept created is going to be what you choose. Be patient and allow time to create the right identity, and effectively reflect the brand purpose, and the messaging that communicates this. Our Journey Fortunately for us, because our brand purpose has remained the broadly the same, our rebrand has been relatively straightforward in terms of positioning our messaging and developing a visual identity. But this doesn’t mean this it’s always been like this for us! Here’s some examples of how we created some concepts for different elements of the new brand: We created a strapline based on “Generating growth through marketing” and then looked to support this through messaging to cover our different types of services: We Create. We Market. We Support   We created numerous concepts and logo designs based on the idea of generating growth                   We introduced some depth to the colour palette to replicate the warmth of being a strategic partner. The Result: Final Brand At some point you’ll realise that you are happy with one of the ideas, or you’ll have a few contenders to choose from. Either way you’ll have to decide: Does it reflect that purpose with a set of elements that are clearly identifiable as your brand? Are you happy/do you like it enough for it to be your brand for a significant amount of time? For your brand to work, you’ll have to create a clear set of brand guidelines covering both the messaging and visual identity. Often seen by some as stifling and annoying, they are vital in ensuring your brand is represented consistently, and therefore becomes identifiable. If you’ve invested the time to create this new brand, don’t fall into the trap of thinking that’s it. Take time to train your staff on your brand, sharing the purpose and core elements that you want them to use when advocating the brand. It’s the only way to achieve full adoption.   TIP: This blog outlines 6 Tips for Better Brand Guidelines   Our Journey Wait and see…

Introducing The Generate UK Marketing Academy To Newbury College Students

Through our conversations with both teachers and students, we were able to better understand the academic landscape and provide recommendations on what could benefit students in terms of knowledge and skills. At Generate UK we want to enable students who have a passion for digital marketing, design or web development to explore their skills and kickstart their career by working with us. We are looking to work with students that are keen to learn and are excited to start their professional journey. The Newbury College Careers event gave us this opportunity as it meant we could speak to passionate students who showcased their work and their achievements. We took the opportunity to introduce the newly launched Generate UK Marketing Academy, allowing students to work with us on a flexible basis as part of their study or as a work placement. We believe that the Generate UK Academy is the perfect way for students to increase their knowledge and grow from a business perspective. What would a student gain from getting involved? Work experience with Generate UK enables students to test out the marketing, design and development career, but there are more benefits to gain from spending time with us. Here are just a few of them: An opportunity to try out what you are learning in the real world Developing skills that will expand your learning Build confidence Improve soft skills – communication, organisation, professionalism, time management and many more Network with professionals in the field Experience on your CV All in all, we believe the Newbury College Careers Event was a great success and we hope to see this grow and evolve next year. If you’re a student or know of a student looking to gain real insight into working with a successful digital marketing agency and want to know more about the Generate UK Marketing Academy, then we’d love to hear from you. Email and one of our team will be delighted to contact you to provide all of the information you need.

Google To Phase Out Third-Party Cookies – All You Need to Know

What are cookies? Website cookies are small-packets of information that your computer stores within a web browser (such as Google Chrome or Internet Explorer), and is used to help a website keep track of your visits and activity. Websites could require this information for a whole manner of reasons. For example; an eCommerce business would want to use cookies to ensure that your shopping cart doesn’t reset every time you leave, or a social media network can help make your sign-in experience easier by remembering your log in details for you. If you were to reset your website cookies, you would essentially be starting again online, browsing the web as if it was the first time you had ever done so. Whilst this can be very freeing, it’s not the most efficient online experience. It’s not particularly these cookies that Google, and other browsers, are wanting to move away from however. Third –party tracking cookies, often utilised data platforms, may be used to create long-term records of your internet history, collecting a deep profile of you and your online history. Unlike their first-party counterparts, third-party tracking cookies are accessed on websites that didn’t create them. This allows the cookie’s creator to collect and receive user browsing data from an array of different sources and websites.   Why do companies track your browsing history? Quite simply; to make money. The advertising industry is worth a staggering $565 billion, and information sits at the heart of it. The more information you have, the better you can target your potential customers and increase sales. However, as the industry grows the information collected and sold by providers utilising third-party cookies has become more invasive. For example, dating apps such as Grindr, OkCupid and Tinder have recently been accused of potentially breaking European privacy laws with their decision to collect and sell user invasive information such as their dating choices and precise locations. In a post-GDPR world, browsers have begun to realise that this is, quite frankly, an unacceptable practice and they need to do more to protect their users online.   How will this affect my business? If you are a business that relies heavily on its digital marketing activities this decision could have a significant impact on how your organisation targets and communicates with potential customers online. Depending on how Google Chrome (and other browsers) decide to move forward, we could begin to see the end for third-party data platforms and multi-touch attribution providers. How marketers and advertisers collect, manage and track their campaigns will rely more heavily on first-party data solutions, which could lead to a data monopoly for companies such as Google, Apple and Microsoft. This is likely the main reason for browsers to move away from third-party cookies, however we can dream that they have their user’s interests solely at the heart of their decision.   Why is this a good thing? Moving forward, it’s unclear at this stage what the data landscape will look like in 2022, but you can rest easy that this isn’t the end of your data strategy, just a re-alignment. Reliance will of course become heavier on first-party cookies, but the fundamentals of your digital advertising approach will be largely unaffected – unless you are acquiring personal identifiable information (if you are, stop that!). How we use the internet has evolved a lot over the past 25 years, but website cookies have remained largely unchanged in all that time. This is far from the ‘cookie-pocalpse’ that is being portrayed online, but an opportunity for a fresh start for the whole digital industry. With Google’s decision to phase out third-party cookies by 2022, the media industry has been offered a period of transition to establish better practices and an environment for innovation. We may even see a renaissance for more traditional marketing and advertising practices has we move away from invasion and towards inspiration.   To discuss how your business can improve its digital marketing activities and get your data strategy ready for 2022, speak to one of our expert marketing consultants today!
Social Media Strategies

Top 5 Social Media Trends For 2020

1. Balance Between Public and Private Social Platforms The key to progress is to choose the best journey for your company. In 2019, successful brands tended to utilise both private and public social strategies to achieve an appropriate balance between awareness and personalised service: Public channels, such as Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram, are very useful to generate buzz and increase awareness and engagement. All organisations should be immersed in these channels as it’s essential to build external trust. From private social media channels, such as WhatsApp, companies can build deeper relationships with their clients and offer a personalised service. Users prefer a personalised service and it’s important to use one-on-one communication to provide value to your customers. However, you have to know how to combine both social media strategies. Here are 3 steps to obtain the best social media results in 2020: Create a seamless journey between public and private Depending on your industry, one of both options will be a better option. E-commerce and B2C companies are more suitable to integrate public and private channels to deliver the best customer service. Automate easy messages Considering that time is money, automation tools are great for companies that want to save both valuable sources. However, customers want to communicate with people, so they can handle more difficult conversations.Saving time through automation can sometimes lead to negative customer experiences, so it’s important to not automate all the social actions. Respect the function and nuances of private channels Normally, private channels are used as a friendly tool to speak with your loved ones. In this case, the context is extremely important. Marketers have to make sure they don’t use an inappropriate advertising language and chase their audiences in private tools. These social channels are commonly used in a friendly context and it’s important to keep this atmosphere. 2. Build External Trust Through Your Employees Another trend for 2020 is using social media as a platform to show the role that employees have in their company. This will become a part of corporate strategies for organisations. 75% of people surveyed in Hootsuite analysis, affirmed that they trust employees. In this way, Hootsuite predicts that organisations are going to amplify their company purpose with employee advocacy and building strong employee culture. For 2020, the social media management dashboard, Hootsuite, estimates that the internal culture of trust, the employer benefits and growth should be shared in companies’ social platforms to build an external trust and reputation. 3. TikTok  TikTok was the most downloaded app in the world for the first quarter of 2019, and is a platform with over 800 million monthly active users. The audience of TikTok are people from the ages of 16 to 23 and the majority reside in China. For this reason, unless your target audience is part of that sector, organisations shouldn’t invest in this platform, as the demographics are very niche. However, all marketers should consider keeping an eye on TikTok, as it can be a great tool to monitor trends and content which could be applicable to your channels. 4. Give Campaigns Time There isn’t a successful formula for social media. Everything depends on the industry, your audience and the types of content you’re creating. The best way to measure the success of your a social media marketing performance is to create multi-funnel social ad campaigns and give them time to perform. 5. Attribution One of the most important things about marketing is analysing and measuring the performance of your strategy. This will be the only way for marketers to see the ROI that they are getting back from their actions. According to Hootsuite, 70% of social marketers aren’t using an attribution model. To accurately measure the performance of social, it is essential to have a holistic view by using multiple analytics sources, omni-channel integrations, and not reinventing the wheel.

Helen & Douglas House Christmas Appeal

Helen & Douglas House helps local families cope with the challenges of looking after a terminally ill baby or child who will die prematurely. It is a home from home for local terminally ill children and their families – providing round-the-clock care in a warm, loving environment. We asked for, and were provided with, a bespoke list of Christmas presents and items to donate for a Christmas party for the children and their families on Thursday 19th December. “This is a season of giving, and we felt it was incredibly important to give back to the local community, and especially an important charity such as Helen and Douglas House,” says Joe Baily, “it has been a rewarding experience to provide joy to the children that call Helen and Douglas House their home, especially during the Christmas period.” Presents supplied by Generate UK for Helen and Douglas House included: Toys and games Arts and crafts equipment such as paints, colouring books and pens. Experiential items such as night lights and bubble kits. “It was great to meet Adele, Stephanie and Joe and show them around our hospice. From all of us at Helen & Douglas House, thank you very much to Generate UK for your kind generosity and fantastic support this Christmas.” – Helen & Douglas House Merry Christmas from everyone at Generate UK!  

Top Web Design trends of 2019

1) Simplistic Minimalism Minimalism isn’t a recent form of web design although it has become more popular in recent years with some brands adopting the style in a range of different ways. However, it is generally agreed that where minimalism is concerned, you may potentially force a user to perform in a particular way that they either don’t understand or recognise. However, when simplistic works well and users are guided through a simple and easy to understand journey, minimalism can work great for improving click through rates and conversions.   2) Serif fontfaces Most working in the design and creative industry will be aware of the often-unfollowed opinion that serif fonts are for print and sans serif font faces are for screen. However, recent design trends see serif fonts taking up more screens with some big brands breaking the rule in an unconventional, yet trendy move. Sans fonts are great for readability which is why most websites adopting this new trend are still utilising sans for smaller text but using big, bold serif for heading and titles.   3) Natural, smooth shapes Web design typically consists of the use grids and solid lines, however, recently the web design industry has seen the use of softer, more natural shapes and lines across websites.   4) Monochromatic and absence of colour Modern websites typically use a wide range of different colours and styles however, recent web design trends have seen the use of monochromatic themes and limited colour pallets take the forefront. This trend can sometimes be limiting but when it’s done right, it can help to solidify brand identity whilst being very memorable.   5) Overlapping design elements The use of overlapping design elements looks similar to the use of broken grid layouts. It takes a lot of careful consideration to get this trend to work great because of the complexity that comes with it’s style. Both in terms of it visual aesthetic and the design of the style. In order achieve a great result it important to consider important areas of the site and how the journey of the user is incorporated into it.   6) Large experimental menus and navigation Large and experimental website navigations aren’t typically used on corporate and professional websites for a couple of reasons- mainly because they’re experimental and most client’s don’t want to risk users becoming confused or lost on their website. However, the use of experimental and large navigation menus are cropping up around the web nonetheless. 7) Vibrant colour The use of vibrant colour pallets as another great way to grab user attention and solidify brand identity. Use of high contrast gradient backgrounds to bright image overlays and animations have dotted the internet since its earliest conception and most feel as tough the trend will only become more appealing as more and more brands attempt to ‘fit in’ with the latest web design trends. 8) Abstract design The use of abstract design elements is an interesting way to grab user attention and deeply embed branding into the core of your website. Abstract web design also helps you to really stand out amongst your competitors as being unique. This is further amplified by the use of exciting colours, shapes, styles and themes. 9) Single Page Single page web design is a great way to guide your users through a story, not just a marketing journey. Most web design then features the use of single page design needs to be inclusive of important visual elements that are easily recognisable such as anchor menus and buttons. When done correctly single page sites can also encompass brand continuity and style. 10) Gradients The use of gradients has become highly popular within the web design industry and is basically a multipurpose design trend that helps to add modern style to a website. Use of gradients in web design is a fantastic way to incorporate colour and pattern into almost any style, but are most commonly used on projects that are ‘art poor’ or have little artistic design elements.