The Snap IPO is Overrated

Snap Inc, the parent company to Snapchat, debuted on the NYSE on March 2, 2017 to a lot hype and fanfare. The Snap IPO’d at $17 USD a share and quickly jumped to $28. It settled back down this week at $22 a share. The excitement around the stock links to the popularity of Snapchat. It has captured the attention of the elusive 18-24 year old demographic, coveted by advertisers and brands. Snap had $400 million in revenue last year and is projected to have more than a $1 billion dollars in revenue this year which also makes it attractive. Although Snap’s accomplishments are impressive, Snap has some fundamental flaws.

Snap Inc’s business model could be in trouble. That means that the stock prices could be too.

Facebook Duplicated Snapchat’s Differentiators

Snapchat has attractive features: disappearing messages, filters, status updates (a.k.a. Stories), and augmented reality lenses.

Facebook launched stories and filters on Instagram and Facebook Messenger. Disappearing messages also launched on on Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp recently. Bye-bye differentiators.

Image courtesy of Techcrunch


User growth is key to Snapchat’s future success. While Snapchat has a loyal user base, right now there isn’t a compelling reason for new users to join Snapchat. What’s the point when Facebook Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp have similar features?

Snap’s Spectacles May Not Take Off

Snap launched Spectacles at the end of last year to diversify its revenue. While the initial reaction to Spectacles was favourable, the recent interest in the hardware has declined.

Snap Spectacles

In general, the wearables market has proven to be difficult to compete and win in. We’ve seen successful wearable tech companies like Fitbit and GoPro struggle. Snap may be in for a similar uphill battle in the wearable hardware business.

You Can Get More Views on Instagram

In social media, engagement matters just as much as follower growth. When someone posts something to social media they want to see their views, likes, and shares maximized.

A recent Techcrunch article revealed that the average view per snap has been on the steep decline. Content producers have been posting less on Snapchat since the launch of Instagram stories.

Declining users Snap

Declining engagement and slowing user growth is a bad combination for Snapchat as it stands right now.

It seems that Snap is genuinely trying to innovate and build a viable business. I love that. But it’s important not to get caught up in the hype of the Snap IPO. The company still has a lot of work to do. They need to develop a competitive advantage that can’t be duplicated and “sticky” products that keep users engaged.

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Download on Digital Marketing: February 2017

What’s new in digital marketing? The answer is always “everything”. In a world that is constantly changing, we’re making it easy to stay on top of the latest updates.

This Month in Digital Marketing…

Giphy launched library of more than 2,000 GIFs to teach sign language
GIFs can do more than add a sassy quip to the end of your tweet. Now, they can even help you learn a new language.

WhatsApp was the latest Facebook product to clone Snapchat stories
WhatsApp has cloned Snapchat’s popular stories format and is using it to replace its old text-based status messages.

Instagram launched photo albums
The app formally introduced a new feature that allows users to attach up to 10 photos and videos to a single post.

PlayStation VR blasted past sales expectations
It’s a good sign for the adoption of VR, but we still have a ways to go.

VR headsets may get a facelift
Google has been experimenting with adding your face to the outside of a VR headset. This could make the technology more ‘human’.

Facebook is reportedly working on a new app for streaming show
In a bid to increase its earnings from advertising, Facebook is gearing up to put itself against streaming services like Netflix and AppleTV.

Hootsuite acquired AdEspresso to move into paid content and social ads
Hootsuite made a big stride towards paid ads by acquiring AdEspresso, a company that has built a set of tools to create, A-B test, and post advertisements on Facebook and Instagram.

Snap begins selling Spectacles online
You can be the proud owner of Snap’s video-recording sunglasses for $129.99 USD.

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Download on Digital Marketing: January 2017

What’s new in digital marketing? The answer is always “everything”. In a world that is constantly changing, we’re making it easy to stay on top of the latest updates.

This Month in Digital Marketing…

Google refused to give up on Google+
The search giant announced a handful of changes for the service, including hiding “low-quality” comments, adding zoom functionality, bringing back its events feature, and killing the classic design.

Facebook launched the Journalism Project
The project will create deeper relationships with publishers, including giving early access to new tools and features.

Snapchat launched universal search to simplify navigation
Snapchat just made it much easier to find friends, groups, and brands with a universal search bar that’s always accessible at the top of the app.

Google Voice got its first big update in five years, adds new UI and features
Google Voice – their call and text app for the US – got a modern UI, Direct Reply support, and MMS photo support.

Instagram turned up the heat on Snapchat with video ads in ‘stories’
Instagram rolled out full-screen, auto-playing video ads to the stories feature. Brands are excited.

Snapchat’s cracked down on content
Snapchat doubled down on its efforts as a media platform by cracking down on clickbait and banning explicit images. Facebook did it. Will Twitter follow?

Google introduced search data into its YouTube targeting model
Google announced big changes to its targeting model, allowing advertisers to target YouTube ads based on people’s search histories.

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Manage up with Digital Analytics

At Stryve, the minions live by the term “managing up.” What do we mean by it? Managing up means stretching yourself. It means going beyond your job description. It means helping those above you kick-ass at their job.

A big part of managing up is putting yourself and your ideas out there to better the business you work for. So for all the data junkies out there – step outside your comfort zone, step back from your computer, and manage up with these data-driven insights the C-suite will love.

Determine up-and-coming markets for your company

Option 1: Use the locations report

We’re sure that in your regular analytics reports you take a gander at where traffic is coming from. Take it one step further and see where new traffic is coming from. By determining where new users are coming from, you can pitch marketing in geographic areas that are beginning to take notice of your company. Even if your company doesn’t do business internationally, don’t fret. You can gather location data based on country, region (i.e. province or state), city or metro area.

To access the locations report click on the “audience” tab in the Google Analytics toolbar.  Then click on the “sessions” tab in the dashboard and sort based on the percentage of new sessions (found in the site usage tab). From there you can change the primary dimension in the data table to sort based on country, region, city or metro area.

Option 2: Goal conversions by location

This option kicks it up a notch. In this option, we add an extra step that ties location to action. To do so, sort the data table by conversion rate.

Kick it up even further by sorting data based on the percentage of new sessions to get a clear picture of new markets that convert. To add this extra step, click on the sessions tab above the map in your locations dashboard. From there, select the tab “percent of new sessions.”  Next, sort by conversion rate in the data table. Presto! You’ve got a wealth of actionable data.

Pro Tip: Don’t let insignificant data skew your results. Exclude insignificant data (e.g. 1-25 visits) by filtering out visits less than 25. To do so, click  “advanced” in the search tab in the analytics toolbar. Then filter data by only including sessions greater than 25.


Sell mobile

As digital marketers, it’s easy to assume that all businesses have a mobile website or use mobile-focused marketing tactics. However, a recent Adobe study found that 80% of companies still don’t have a mobile marketing strategy. Don’t fall into that statistic! Use mobile data from Google Analytics to shift the mindset of even the most mobile-phobic CEO.

Start by determining your percentage of mobile traffic. You can do this by selecting “audience” in the Google Analytics toolbar, then click the “mobile tab.” From there you can view data based on type of device category (desktop, mobile and tablet), device (i.e. iPhone), and even operating system.

If the numbers show promise, pitch a marketing plan that puts mobile in the mix and puts your “managing up” talents front and centre.

Find out what marketing activities lead to action

Multi-channel attribution reports are the bee’s knees. Why? Because by default, Google Analytics uses a last-click attribution model. Last-click attribution means that the marketing activity that was “last-clicked” is given credit for the conversion. For example, if Chandler sees a Facebook post, a Twitter ad, and an AdWords ad before purchasing, the AdWords ad is given credit for the sale.

The problem with this model is that it’s black and white. Last-click attribution doesn’t account for the relationship building marketing tactics that helped lead to the sale. Multi-channel attribution reports allow us to see what activities “assisted” the conversion. This type of information is extremely useful when determining which marketing tactics to continue to invest in. It also puts a spotlight on often overlooked tactics like lead nurture and content marketing. It also helps prove and quantify softer marketing tactics such as brand awareness.

To access the multi-channel attribution report, click on the “conversions” tab in the Google Analytics toolbar, then “multi-channel funnels”, and finally “assisted conversions.” From there, it’s all you!



Sketchy Digital Marketers are Ruining our Industry

I believe a majority of digital marketing companies are sketchy. That’s right, I said it. Our industry is full of underqualified and self-proclaimed experts. Be weary of anyone that calls themselves a social media expert, AdWords guru or content evangelist. How do we know this? Because our company Stryve has to clean up the remnants of their bad client engagements. Oh we’ve seen it all. AdWords campaigns that were never run. Google analytics accounts that were never set up. Campaigns without tracking codes. Blogs with duplicate or stolen content. Websites that were set up on an obscure, proprietary CMS. Change requests for simple content updates that take weeks and cost thousands of dollars.

We don’t just see the mess, we get the emails from these agencies promising to get us leads or SEO our website for bargain basement prices. It’s not possible to deliver the results they promise at that price in that time frame.

I’ve grown tired of the hucksters, the quacks, and the pretenders. I’m tired of the slick “marketing guy” speaking in clichés about social media strategies or content marketing. He’s probably never run a successful campaign before. I’m tired of all the talk about tactics before objectives. “Let’s do a video.” “You should be on Instagram.”

Here’s the thing. You need a team focused on solving a problem or an objective first. Tactics will follow. But what you need the most is solid thinking.

The Sketch Test

Here’s a sketch test: ask an agency, “Does my company need to be on social media?” If the immediate answer is yes, proceed to karate chop them in the mouth. Make sure you land one right on the kisser.

Our answer to that question is NO – a big fat no. Your company can thrive without being on social. But, if you’re going to do it, do it really well and strategically choose which platforms to invest your time in. Don’t half-ass it. Aim to be the best in your industry at it. Our belief is to do less, but do it better. That’s the answer you should hear.

Same with blogging. We love blogging, but it doesn’t align with every company’s objectives. If you’re looking to amp up SEO and drive thought leadership, go for it. But consider the opportunity cost of your time, if all you’re doing is writing useless blogs no one will ever read.

We Need to Clean Up Our Industry

It’s time to clean up our industry. I don’t have the solution yet, but I’m thinking the technical and creative nature of this industry requires a level of certification. Something that is akin to project management certification. Something that requires continuing education certification. That might not be the perfect situation, but Google Partner certifications just don’t cut it. We need a way to filter out the pretenders and bring a level of professional standards to our industry. If we don’t, we’ll continue to be labelled as hucksters. And that’s not good for anyone.

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Download on Digital Marketing: December 2016

What’s new in digital marketing? The answer is always “everything”. In a world that is constantly changing, we’re making it easy to stay on top of the latest updates.

This Month in Digital Marketing…

Snapchat rolls out Groups, letting you chat with up to 16 friends at once
With this new rollout, it’s safe to say Snapchat is making a play against Facebook’s suite of apps including Messenger and WhatsApp.

Nintendo learns a multi-billion dollar lesson that Mario is no guarantee for success
Despite hitting the top of the Apple iOS top grossing charts, Super Mario Run, was extremely frustrating for customers.

Top VR players collaborate to form the Global Virtual Reality Association
Facebook, Google, HTC, Sony and Samsung, amongst others, are set to collaborate as part of the newly formed Global Virtual Reality Association (GVRA).

Facebook introduces 360-degree live video
Facebook Live and Facebook 360-degree video used to be separate mediums. Now though, the two can be integrated for an immersive user experience.

Apple adds hundreds of new emojis
Whether you love them or hate them, there’s now more emojis than ever before.

Amazon makes first commercial drone delivery
Amazon is one step closer to achieving its goal of using drones to deliver packages around the world.

Top Stories hit the Google engine results page
Google’s news results were shaken up once again with the launch of “Top Stories”, a card-style set of featured stories.

Twitter launches live video
Twitter users will now be able to broadcast live video directly from their mobile apps, thanks to tighter integration with live streaming service Periscope,

Facebook Messenger launches Instant Games
Using HTML5, the games load quickly in your message thread and are designed to be played competitively with friends.

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Creating a Digital Marketing Strategy

In 2017, your biggest marketing expense will be on digital ads. eMarketer indicates that digital ad spend will surpass all other media spend, including television.

If you haven’t already done so, now is the time to set or refine your digital marketing strategy.

This presentation is for you if you’re facing the following tasks:

  • Designing a digital marketing strategy from beginning to end
  • Improving on a digital marketing strategy that currently exist
  • Judging whether a digital marketing agency is capable of taking your company’s digital marketing to the next level

Key Takeaways

The stages of creating a digital marketing strategy follows these 6 steps

  1. Establishing unique messaging
  2. Launching or relaunching a website
  3. Building a content creation and amplification plan
  4. Launching or relaunching social media profiles
  5. Producing and distributing content
  6. Monitoring performance, plus iterating and optimizing your strategy
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Download on Digital Marketing: November 2016

What’s new in digital marketing? The answer is always “everything”. In a world that is constantly changing, we’re making it easy to stay on top of the latest updates.

This Month in Digital Marketing…

Mobile and tablet internet usage surpassed desktop for the first time ever
The new worldwide study reports that mobile devices have finally taken over. You better make your site responsive real soon.

Microsoft launched its Slack competitor, Teams
Right after Facebook Workplace? The battle of the office-communication tools is raging!

Instagram has tested ways to tag products in photos & looked at live streaming
We’ll see more tools for brands and influencers to push messages out to their followers, which should boost engagement even further.

Elon Musk said that governments need to start planning for the robot takeover
With all of the jobs that AI will replace, he suggests that governments will need to provide a basic living income to all citizens.

Facebook started testing a job posting feature
This is a great thing for brands, but what will LinkedIn do? Like Workplace, this feature shows that Facebook wants to take over the business market.

Macbook Pros lost their SD card slots
Say goodbye to yet another port on your laptops. We’ve seen disc drives and ethernet ports fall away. Now it’s the card reader’s turn.

Google launched its mobile VR headset
These lower-cost (sorta) virtual reality experiences should get the market rolling. More proof that you really can’t ignore it.

Trump may try to take away net neutrality and privacy protection
As a way of deregulating industries, this could allow Internet companies to regulate speeds and release personal browsing data.

Facebook found errors in the data it shows marketers
Video views were exaggerated and some click and engagement data was also found to be flawed. Expect fixes and apologies.

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Close up portrait of a young woman blowing dandelion flower outdoors, Freedom, Dandelion, Women, Nature, Sunlight,  Blowing, Allergy, Only Women, Aspirations

Breathe Life into Trade Shows with Digital

Trade shows are the bread and butter of B2B. And for good reason, nothing can compete with the face-to-face networking opportunities created on the trade show floor. They are one of the best ways to get in front of your target market, and when done right, trade shows offer amazing lead generation potential.

Too often, we see B2B brands leaving ROI on the table. They use the same trade show techniques over-and-over. Exhibit. Rinse. Repeat.

We’re not saying booths, marketing collateral, and trade show sponsorships aren’t important for success at tradeshows. But we think it’s time for brands to breathe some life into their trade shows with simple digital marketing tactics.

Social Media

Social media is the low-hanging fruit when it comes to your digital trade show presence. First things first, find out the official hashtag for the trade show – write it down, monitor it, and add it to every trade show relevant post you share. If the trade show has social media accounts of their own, follow them A.S.A.P. These preliminary steps will help you stay informed about the event and may gain you some followers of your own.

When it comes to spreading your message on social, let your followers know you’ll be exhibiting early and often. During the show, let people know that you are attending and share your experience from the trade show floor (don’t forget that hashtag!).

Keep the trade show momentum going after the show by sharing a few final posts to thank those who stopped by your booth and to reach out to those who you weren’t able to connect with.

If you’re planning on running a promoted social campaign during the event there are many ways that you can reach attendees. One of the simplest ways to reach your audience is to target based on the location & topic of the show. For a micro-targeted approach on Twitter, targeting based on the hashtag for the trade show is a surefire way to get in front of your audience.

P.S. You can learn more about targeting in our e-book: Planning a Digital Marketing Campaign

Email Marketing Campaign

If email is part of your marketing mix, consider launching an email campaign surrounding your trade show presence. If you don’t have a list of attendees, send an email well in advance of the show to let prospects know where they can find you. If you are sponsoring any events, such lectures or lunch and learns, be sure to give your audience the heads up. On each email you send, make your contact information readily available. We’d also suggest giving prospects the option to book meetings with your team in advance.

Post-trade show follow-up is equally as important. While sales focuses on following up with leads from the show, marketing should line up a “sorry we missed you” email campaign to connect with prospects you missed. Encourage them to reach out and let them know where you’ll be next!

Pro Tip: Keep time zones in mind when sending emails!

Content Exclusives for Attendees

It’s no secret. We love great content. A well-timed content campaign though? Now you’re making us blush. If you are working on a great piece of digital content, why not time its release with a key industry event?

You have a few options here to make it a success:

  • Use a tablet as part of your trade show display and encourage visitors to download the content piece while at your booth.
  • Create a unique URL for your content and promote it on postcards at the show.
  • Remember that social and email campaign? Encourage people to stop by your booth so they can get their hands on your exclusive piece of content.
  • Arm your sales team with printed copies that they can give out to leads.

Next Steps

The tactics above are a great start for any marketing team looking to breathe life into stale trade show marketing. With 2017 right around the corner, kick off your next trade show by adding some of the tactics above. Before you know it digital will be a key component of each trade show.


Influencer Marketing isn’t just for B2C Companies

Think influencer marketing only applies to B2C companies? Think again.

Influencer marketing combines the best of two worlds. It has the personality of word-of-mouth advertisement combined with all the power of social media marketing. It’s about identifying individuals who have influence over potential buyers, and optimizing marketing activities around those influencers.

In short, credible influencers with a dedicated and connected audience can reinvigorate your sales funnel.

In the past, we lived by the notion that influencer marketing is only for B2C companies. But as Eric Lam, CEO of Revfluence points out, the power of influencers might be too great to overlook,

“Influencer marketing is incredibly powerful because it empowers brands to go directly to those authentic, trusted voices that buyers have already been turning to. Better yet, influencers can help boost the ROI across your entire organization.”

Still not convinced that influencer marketing can impact B2B? Here are some stats.

  • Forrester Research report showed that 85% of B2B decision-makers rely on trusted online communities when researching business technologies
  • DemandGen study that shows 72% of B2B buyers use social media to research a purchase and 53% rely on trusted recommendations to make a purchase
  • McKinsey & Company study that cites word-of-mouth as the primary factor behind 20% – 50% of ALL purchasing decisions

Influencer marketing is growing and digital marketing is crowded

B2B companies that put off influencer marketing in favour of more traditional techniques risk sacrificing access to a rapidly growing channel.  The below graphic demonstrates that marketers rated influencer marketing as the fastest growing channel over organic search and other methods.


A reason influencer marketing is growing so fast is our hyper-connected world. More than ever, people are able to find other people that share common interests. Reddit communities, Facebook groups, and Twitter feeds all connect people based on the content they are posting and consuming.

In addition, the digital marketing ecosystem is getting crowded. Ads are lost among the sea of competition or being blocked all together. According to eMarketer, 69.8 million Americans use an ad blocker. Next year, that number is expected to jump to 86.6 million people. Influencers allow you to fly under the radar, and provide credibility to your brand without coming off as an ad.

Influencer marketing is cost-effective and provides high ROI

Pictured in the graphic below, influencer marketing is tied with email marketing for the most cost-effective customer acquisition channel.


In addition, influencer marketing provides the highest returns on investment (ROI). On average, businesses generate $6.50 in revenue per each $1 invested in influencer marketing. Pictured below, most businesses receive results from influencer marketing, with only the bottom 18% seeing no returns.


We tend to forget companies are made up of people…

We’re always looking to separate the B2C and the B2B space. But we tend to forget that companies are made up of people. You sway organizations to make decisions, by convincing the people that work there to see your side of the story. Influencer marketing works for B2B companies in the same way it works for B2C companies.

For example, lets use an example of a B2B company that sells enterprise software to large corporations. They can integrate influencer marketing into their campaign by interviewing clients and collecting testimonials. Clients are closely connected with your value proposition and branding. They can be some of the best influencers for quick growth.

In turn, with current clients posting curated content, prospective clients will be able to see the value your company provides hands-on with testimonials credible influencers.  After all, B2B marketing is more than connecting with relevant influencers, it’s about becoming one as well.

The numbers don’t lie.

We’ve seen the stats and all the data. Influencer marketing is cost effective, provides high ROI, and is growing fast.

So why wouldn’t B2B companies look to capitalize on such a lucrative channel? Odds are, you’re probably already doing some form of influencer marketing. If you’re not…

Partnering with influencers in your industry will grow your brand expertise and recognition. This will help attract quality leads and the attention of other thought leaders. It can give you access to new markets and new ideas.

As a B2B company, you need to reclaim your brand authority. Start today with a dedicated influencer marketing strategy.