Why Creating a Buyer Persona is Crucial

What’s a buyer persona?

Buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal customer based on market data and research about your existing customers. If used to its full potential, a buyer persona can help you get right to the core of your customers’ values—attracting the most valuable leads and visitors to your business.

How can a buyer persona benefit my business?

  1. It brings your target demographic into focus.

When you go through the exercise of defining a buyer persona, you write their story. By doing so, you are uncovering their hopes, concerns, behaviors, activities and needs. When you have a full picture of your target rather than just the basic demographics, you are better able to tailor your message to those consumers and reveal unique opportunities for establishing connections.

  1. If it’s inaccurate or underdeveloped, it can alienate your target market…

“As a rheumatoid arthritis patient and as a healthcare marketer, I cringe every time I see the TV commercial for a Humira. It doesn’t connect with me and, even worse, it perpetuates the false myth that people suffering from RA can take an injection and then run off to build a playground during a rainstorm. Only 20 percent of patients achieve full remission,” said Shannon O’Connell. This is a prime example of a brand that could benefit from a more accurate buyer persona. While healthcare marketers want to communicate the message that good care will allow patients to get back to their lives and daily activities, they need to ask serious questions about patient outcomes before making that promise. Knowing your target market—and not just basing your advertising on a stereotype or caricature—can be the key to avoiding disconnects and unfulfilled brand promises like this one.

  1. …but if it’s accurate, it can help you improve your brand experience.

The process of wiping the slate clean and thinking about things from the customer’s perspective will often uncover valuable wish list items that could make all the difference in getting word-of-mouth referrals or higher ratings in online reviews.

Steps for developing a buyer persona:

  1. Research to find basic information such as gender, age range, education levels, household income and geographic areas.
  2. Survey to discover their activities, priorities, how they source information, social media usage and any other lifestyle preferences that could be relevant to your business.
  3. Define their needs and expectations as well as any struggles or issues they may have.
  4. Define how others influence their buying decisions.
  5. Survey to discover your company’s strengths and what makes you stand out from competitors.
  6. Use this information to group similar consumers together.
  7. Develop an anecdotal story about a fictitious person who represents each type of group.

Additional tips and tricks:

  • The more detailed your buyer persona is, the better!
  • You may find it helpful to search for a stock photo that fits your persona.
  • Be careful to avoid making up answers to the questions in the above steps; make sure your responses are backed up by research or customer statements. Otherwise, your buyer persona may end up being more self-serving than enlightening.
  • Once you are able to identify real customers who fit your buyer persona, you can tailor your communications to fit their needs. Be conscious of this in your business interactions.

###
AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising 
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street
Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

Marketing to Generation Z

As Millennials move into adulthood, another generation is racking advertisers’ brains—one that is just as difficult to pin down.

The general consensus amongst demographers and researchers is that Generation Z (Gen Z) is composed of young people born during the late 90s and early 2000s. While Millennials witnessed the beginning of the digital age and grew up with VCR tapes and CD players, Gen Z was raised on YouTube and Twitter.

Given this inclination, one might assume that social media and other digital avenues are the key to connecting with Gen Z. That’s not necessarily the case. Much like Millennials before them, members of Gen Z are incredibly selective about their media consumption. And, surprisingly, they don’t always vibe well with digital advertising.

Advertising and branding agency Kantar Millward Brown recently conducted a study on the online marketing preferences of Generation X, Millennials and Generation Z. They established online forums in the U.S., China and Germany, tested 31 ads in ten countries and interviewed a total of 24,000 participants from 39 countries.

Of all three demographics, Gen Z was the least receptive to mobile video ads—only 27 percent of respondents reacted favorably to this format. When confronted with ads they didn’t like, they began to multi-task and pay less attention.

However, this changed drastically when viewers were offered a reward—58 percent reacted favorably.

Gen Z’s are often irritated by online ads and will do their best to avoid them. 43 percent said that they prefer skippable pre-roll ads (typical of YouTube, Vimeo and Hulu) to any other form of online advertising. Additionally, these tech-savvy teens are familiar with ad blockers and they’re not afraid to use them.

Interestingly, the study found that Gen Z prefer some forms of traditional advertising due to the perceived artistic effort dedicated to producing print ads and commercials.

Gen Z also reacts well to native advertisements and celebrity endorsements—but probably not the celebrities you’re thinking of. An AdWeek study revealed that an overwhelming majority (95 percent) of Gen Z use YouTube. Today’s teens couldn’t care less what Katy Perry has to say in a CoverGirl commercial, but they pay attention when their favorite beauty YouTuber recommends a new Glossier moisturizer.

With all this in mind, how can your brand best reach this up-and-coming demographic?

Pre-roll ads are an option, but be aware that if given the opportunity to skip an ad, Gen Z will use it (on average, they’ll skip three seconds faster than Gen X).

Brands looking to catch this demographic could benefit from brand ambassador programs or partnerships with Internet celebrities. It’s a good idea to do some quick research and see not what, but who the kids are watching these days.

If you’re looking to attract Gen Z, you should keep in mind that this is a generation raised on the digital age—which means they’re a little bit jaded by it. Brands should avoid invasive ads, non-skippable mobile ads and homepage pop-ups in favor of a more organic approach: native advertising, celebrity partnerships or brand ambassadors, and carefully crafted, traditional advertising.

Don’t underestimate today’s teens. The best way to lure them is with an eye for art and a healthy respect for their uncanny ability to determine which brands are “authentic” and which ones aren’t.

 

Check out the Kantar Millward Brown study:

http://www.millwardbrown.com/adreaction/genxyz/

And click here to see AdWeek’s infographic on Gen Z’s online habits:

http://www.adweek.com/digital/infographic-50-of-gen-z-cant-live-without-youtube-and-other-stats-that-will-make-you-feel-old/

###
AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street
Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

Facebook Rolls Out Mid-Roll Ads

Facebook_Mid-roll_adFacebook has unveiled a new strategy for its advertisers—mid-roll ads.
The social media giant began testing mid-roll ads in late February.

They now offer the opportunity for advertisers to deliver these five- to 15-second video ads, called in-stream video, within live and non-live videos posted to Facebook.

In-stream video uses audience-based targeting, meaning that viewers of the same video may see different mid-roll ads depending on their interests. Advertisers can choose to exclude their ads from certain categories of videos (such as tragedy and conflict, debatable social issues, mature, etc.) in order to avoid any awkward clashes between video and ad content.

Mid-roll ads aren’t a new concept, but Facebook’s are notable in that they can begin as early as 20 seconds into a video. To qualify to display in-stream video ads, a video must be at least 90 seconds long and ads must be at least two minutes apart within a video.

Live videos have slightly different requirements—the video must be rolling for at least four minutes before an ad can begin, and the streamer must have at least 2,000 followers.

There are a lot of pros to this ad format. CEO Mark Zuckerberg has allowed publishers to make money from branded content in the past, but has always been opposed to pre-roll videos, which are more standard in the industry (think YouTube). Mid-roll ads provide a fresh strategy and an opportunity for advertisers to monetize, which was often difficult with Facebook’s old parameters. The revenue split is 55 percent to the publisher and 45 percent to Facebook. Targeted viewing allows advertisers to reach their exact intended audience. It also makes it easy to A/B test creative concepts and view detailed results using Facebook analytics.

On the other hand, the mid-roll format poses some risks. While many viewers have learned to expect pre-roll ads, mid-roll ads are rare and can be a jarring interruption. Advertisers have to somehow produce creative that doesn’t cause people to get annoyed and abandon the video entirely—a hefty challenge considering consumers’ finicky viewing habits and ever-shrinking attention spans. YouTube, one of Facebook’s biggest competitors, doesn’t even allow mid-roll ads in videos shorter than 10 minutes for this exact reason.

What do you think? Are mid-roll ads an obnoxious fad or an inventive approach to boost engagement? Let us know in the comments.

###
AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street
Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

Ant Q&A: Bryan Cooper

Bryan Cooper
Associate Creative Director

How would you describe your job?
When you break my job down to its basics, I’m taking a thought from one human and translating it into something visually compelling enough to get the attention of another human.

What inspires you?
Evel Knievel, vintage photography, Cracker Jack toys and working with people who know how to turn work into fun.

What creative projects do you pursue outside of agency work?
My favorite medium is clay. There’s something primal about working with clay that you can’t quite get with other mediums. One of the reasons I love it is because there are no tools: just you, your hands and the clay, and it gets messy.

What other creative talents do you have?
I also love photography. If I’m not shooting photos of family or friends, I’m shooting small clay figures that I create. You can check it out at BCillustography.com.

Why did you get into advertising?
I was in a band and needed a secondary job that would allow me to keep my long hair. Advertising fit the bill. It turns out that my favorite part of being in a band was designing our T-shirts and CD covers. So, I quit my band, cut my hair and joined the advertising world. But I still think about growing my hair back out.

###
AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street
Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

A Nurse’s Guide to Twitter

I recently came across an in-depth article by Paul McNamara discussing why nurses should be on Twitter and many great tips for nurses to get the most out of Twitter. It was one of the most practical articles that I’ve read and felt it was worth sharing.

“To borrow a quote from Jane Caro (you’ll find her on Twitter too), social media allows nurses and midwNurse's Guide to  Twitter headerives unmediated access to public conversations for the first time in history. Empowering stuff.” This quote from the article sums it up nicely.

But, in case you prefer bullets with what’s included in the article:

  • Twitter at events; the best way to catch everything at a conference
  • Twitter discussions; scheduled chats about a specific topic
  • Twitter tips; LOTS of tips about using twitter and setting up your twitter profile
  • Twitterisms; how to speak the language of Twitter
  • Suggestions for nurses to follow

If you are a nurse and want to share information and interact with other individuals that have the same interests, then take a few minutes to learn why Twitter may be an ideal conversation platform for you.

Read the article here: http://www.ausmed.com.au/twitter-for-nurses/

Thank you to Paul McNamara for this great content.

Quoted and shared with permission.

How to Use Snapchat Geofilters

AcrobatAnt Office SnapchatSnapchat reaches 150 million daily active users worldwide—and this number only continues to grow—it’s about time everyone understands how to use geofilters. Geofilters are fun overlays that users can add to their snaps when sending to friends and adding to their stories in the Snapchat app.

There are two types of geofilters: community geofilters and on-demand geofilters. Community geofilters are free to submit and they share a location, such as a city, university or local landmark. On-demand geofilters are purchased by businesses and individuals to be used for events, businesses or specific locations. On-demand geofilters can be used in a wide variety of situations, including weddings, festivals and retail locations.

Before using a geofilter, you will need to make sure the feature is turned on in Snapchat.

  1. Open Snapchat and go to settings by tapping the ghost at the top of the screen and then the gear icon in the upper right corner of the next screen.
  2. Once in settings, you will need to navigate to “Manage Preferences” and switch the “Filters” toggle on.
  3. You will then need to ensure that you have given Snapchat permission to access your location. This is also located in “Manage Preferences” under “Permissions.” Hit “Edit Permissions” at the bottom of the screen and give Snapchat permission to access your location.

Once this is set up, accessing geofilters is fun and easy. After you take a snap, simply swipe left or right on the screen to add a filter. You will see a mixture of color filters, the current time, local weather, speed overlays and various geofilters that you can add to your picture or video. You can even add multiple filters by adding the initial filter of your choice and then pressing and holding down on the screen and swiping to the second filter of your choice.

Next time you’re out and about, look to see what fun filters are available in the area to send to your friends, now that you know how to use geofilters. Happy snapping!

 

Content Remains King

shutterstock_248890441Content. The little seven letter word that everyone is talking about. And you should be, too. In this age of marketing, content is paramount. What is content? Content is anything you put out that people engage with. Articles, blogs, social posts, radio, TV, online advertising, anything and everything.

When you begin to think about a new campaign, you have to think about the new campaign as an ecosystem. This ecosystem contains all the ways you plan to reach potential customers or clients. As the marketer, you must have a strong content ecosystem.

Today’s content ecosystems look vastly different than content ecosystems even just a few years ago. Today’s content ecosystems are filled with social media, blogs, sponsored posts, advertorials, print, broadcast and pretty much any other way you can put your advertising in front of people.

While content is important, it’s imperative to produce content that connects to your audience. This is how you secure your customers. It’s not always about creating content yourself, but curating the best content available.

With traditional advertising mediums like broadcast, print, etc., once you distribute the content, there’s nothing left to do but count impressions. With digital, there is a constant flow of content. If there is an article or blog written about your industry, leverage that and share it with your followers. If someone produced a fancy video of your product, leverage it. If someone wrote a great review, share it. Content curation will save you many hours of producing your own content and help you keep the cycle moving forward.

In this day, content is critical to driving brand awareness and giving your customers a reason for sticking with you. And at AcrobatAnt, we believe in great content. We are here to help your marketing department create and curate the best content that delivers results you can take to the CEO.

The Ant Farm Has a Fresh Coat of Paint and Then Some

Phase One of our office redesign and renovation is complete, and the Ants are excited and inspired by the sleeker, cleaner look.

12795092_10153233700616580_6393585176893601879_o

The earth tones have been replaced with a fresh and modern color palette that reflects a creative environment. And desks have been rearranged and positioned to create more interaction between employees and also to help with the workflow. 10548111_10153233700776580_7044311393898893702_o

The blue table is now black, the brown carpet is now multicolored and the office overall feels happier and brighter to AcrobatAnt. There’s now seating under our staircase and a big, steel desk at the front–featuring a very prominent letter A–welcoming guests. 12495923_10153233700631580_7514008136984586002_o

When asked which aspect of the redesign was his favorite, Danny Sadler, creative director, had this to say, “We wanted our office to be a place for when clients or guests come through the door, they get a sense of what we are about.” 12819168_10153233700706580_8233534876064799325_o

Another big focal point of the redesign was accentuating the texture and character of the historic building. The majority of the exterior walls were kept white so the exposed brick would stand out. The exposed brick helps bring some added warmth to the office and reminds us all what the Lincoln Plaza once was, a giant school on the corner of 15th and Peoria.

Keep your eye out for more changes in Phase Two of our redesign.

blog

How to Personally Connect With Your Patients Through Mobile Marketing

AccrobatAnt Healthcare Marketing would like to introduce our second guest blog post. ‘How to Personally Connect With Your Patients Through Mobile Marketing’ was written by Sophorn Chhay from Trumpia.com. Sophorn is the Imbound Marketing Specialist at Trumpia.com. AcrobatAnt does not endorse any third party companies, but seeks to provide useful information to our readers. shutterstock_388310743

Since the dawn of the Internet, everything has gotten a little less personal and since the birth of texting, the art of service, mainly customer service, has gotten less personal as well. And all this technology has led to a change in the doctor-patient relationship. So how should you go about using the modern technology your patient’s expect while communicating with them in a way that doesn’t come across as cold and impersonal? Well, it’s really not all that hard, once you understand the many ways in which it can be done. And today, I am going to give you a variety of ideas you can use to connect with patients on a more personal level. Or at least as personal as possible when communicating digitally.

Out With the Old and In With the New

The first thing you have to do is to stop feeling like you have to deal with each of your patients personally. What I mean by this is that you don’t have to feel obligated to pick up the phone and individually call each of your patients every time you need to communicate with them.

Many healthcare providers carry the old mindset that this is what they have to do in order to deliver a personal experience to each of their patients, but that simply is not true. The fact of the matter is that your patients are busy too, and the majority of them would much rather receive a text or an email from you rather than have to take the time to answer the phone or return your phone call. Additionally, corresponding digitally makes it much easier for your patients to respond. It’s just quicker and much more convenient. And this will provide you with written records of each contact and what was said as well, without having to take the time to write everything down by hand.

It’s Time to Hone Your Digital Personality 

In order to communicate with your patient’s digitally, but still keep it personal, you will have to work on honing your digital personality by learning ways that will keep your doctor-patient relationship personal. Here are some quick tips to get you started:

  • Always use a personal identifier by using your patients name anytime you send them any type of digital message.
  • Provide your patients with a way to personally communicate with you through a contact form or some other means of digital communication such as a text message, email, etc.
  • Send your patients a birthday wish to their mobile numbers.
  • Provide your patients with a digital monthly newsletter full of health tips, healthy recipes, exercise advice, supplement recommendations, etc. Or you could just send them a funny trending health-related viral video with a note saying, “I thought you might enjoy this.” It’s been said that laughter is the best medicine, right? But really, you could send anything to show them you care about them as a person.

Other Ways to Connect With Your Patients Using Mobile Marketing 

There are so many different ways you can use mobile marketing to personalize your doctor-patient relationships. And by doing so, you will show them that you respect their time by communicating with them digitally.

Scheduling and Appointments – Allowing your patients to schedule their appointments online and sending them courtesy appointment reminders is a great way to stay digitally connected to patients. You can also take it one step further by providing them with their test results via their online patient portal so they don’t have to wait, nor do they have to schedule an appointment and take time off work for a consultation. Of course, there are times when a consultation is appropriate; however, you have complete control over the process so you can implement what information you do and don’t allow to be delivered digitally.

Medication Reminders – Digital medication refill reminders are another great way to enhance the doctor-patient relationship. People are busy and will appreciate the reminder as one less thing they have to think about.

Online payments – You can provide an option for patients to make online payments via their mobile device. This will help reduce your collection efforts and make it easier for patients to pay you quickly and easily when it is convenient for them.

Social Engagement – Engaging with your patients through social media is another way to make them want to retain you as their permanent healthcare provider. Create a Facebook page and Pinterest account to get involved with your patients on a more personal level. This will help patients get to know you better while engaging in something fun and interesting, and do not always when it has to do with a medical issue. As you know, most people don’t like going to the doctor, no matter the reason, so it helps to engage with them for other reasons periodically.

The Bottom Line

Being a healthcare provider means addressing the whole person and doing it in a way that takes away the stigma of traditional doctor-patient relationships. Relating effectively can be personal without being in person. Most of your patients will appreciate how easy you have made it for them to communicate with you. Additionally, this is a great way to show them you really do care, without spending significant amounts of time doing so.

What’s Next?

What do you think of what I’ve covered so far? Will you start using mobile marketing to build a more personal relationship with your patients? I would love to read your comments below.

Top Three Instagram Marketing Options for Healthcare Marketers

shutterstock_292931069AccrobatAnt Healthcare Marketing would like to introduce our first guest blog post. ‘Top Three Instagram Marketing Options for Healthcare Marketers’ was written by Nancy Grace from iDigic.net. Nancy is a social media writer at iDigic.net who also contributes for hundreds of other blogs. Her articles predominantly focus on Instagram marketing and are widely followed by readers from all over the world. AcrobatAnt does not endorse any third party companies, but seeks to provide useful information to our readers. 

Last year, Instagram caught the attention of healthcare marketers from around the world when it surpassed Twitter and became the second biggest social network on the Internet.

Are you promoting your healthcare or hospital services on Instagram? If not, then the following tips are just for you. Even if you already have an Instagram account for your healthcare organization, chances are that you haven’t started using the following techniques to advertise your services.

Advertising options for healthcare marketers 

For over a year, Instagram was allowing only a selective list of native brands to post sponsored ads on the network. But late last year, it opened its door to businesses of all size and scope to post premium ads. Below is a list of ad options you could try for your brand promotion.

1. Carousel ads One of the best ways to improve your ad performance is to use the carousel format. These are ads that consist of 3-5 images with captions, URLs and clickable CTAs. Users can easily swipe through the images one by one, which is much easier than scrolling down the page.

How to apply this technique in your healthcare marketing campaign: Create a series of photos of your services and put them in a carousel format showing your followers the various steps involved in the making (from step 1 to step 5). This technique would apply well for short ads but if you want to post something a bit longer, then video ads would be a great option.

2. Direct response ads – Direct response ad format works best when you are looking to get an immediate response from your followers. Most businesses use it to drive more traffic to their website. You could include CTAs like “Learn More” to encourage visitors to explore your services and “Sign Up” to increase your newsletter subscriber base.

How to apply this technique in your healthcare marketing campaign: Post images of fun-filled cooking activities in your cookery classes and include a CTA button in the post. If you are endorsing a fundraising campaign, let your visitors know how they can contribute.

Always remember, capturing the attention of your audience is what matters the most; getting them to follow you or interact is next.

3. Targeted ads – Most businesses prefer targeted ads because they put you right in front of your potential buyers. By using this ad format, you can customize your advertising content for people’s interest, gender and location.

How to apply this technique in your healthcare marketing campaign: If you are offering a product or service for women users in your area, put your ads in front of relevant people. To boost the success of your ad, come up with custom ideas for your end users like creating images with women in the picture.

By the way, before implementing these techniques for your business promotions, see to that you already have a loyal following. If you don’t people aren’t going to pay much attention. Accounts with more followers, even on Facebook and Twitter, are the ones that steal the limelight. If you wish to jazz up your profile with 10,000 real followers in just 48 hours, get in touch with iDigic.

A quick tip to boost your website traffic: The high-quality images that you have created specifically for Instagram marketing can also be shared on other popular content sharing platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and Tumblr. Even better, you can just copy the URL of your shared image on Instagram and use it on any online marketing platform for better visibility.