How to stand out from the rest

That’s the topic we’ve caught in the Made in Britain Twitter net: 5 August 2021. Photo by Mabel Amber.

EVERY Thursday at 1pm Made in Britain hosts #MadeinBritainHour on Twitter. During that hour Made in Britain asks questions of its 21,000 followers and the results are fascinating. Previously this information was enjoyed by the audience at the time and then left to drift away in the Twittersphere, rarely read again. So, we have decided to capture some of the best comments and re-present them for a new audience and easy reference. Some of the responses have been edited but most have been left in their casual Twitter style.

This week we discuss how to stand out from the rest.

Question one: Which of the following is the key factor to make social media campaigns stand out from the rest? Creative, memorable, entertaining, unique, interactive.

Response: There is one missing from the list. Conversational. Start the conversation so you can build rapport with your followers and the wider social media population. I have seen some very effective campaigns on coffee and biscuit choices from manufacturers

Made in Britain: Is conversational part of interactive? Interestingly I misread your tweet first and read it as 'controversial' - some people do try that?

Response: There are many that try the controversial approach but this can backfire spectacularly. Stick to fun and interesting subjects that are relatable by your audience

Response: some do to get a reaction.

Made in Britain: yes and is it the right type of reaction?

Response: I would strongly suggest to stay away from this type of engagement. it is an easy way to lose followers, have total disengagement and may even get barred from the platform if it gets to that level

Response: Not my strongest topic so will resort to my default response. Depends on the audience and goal in mind. Personally I love to be informed and entertained but that might not be for everyone

Response: There is a time and place for all of the above, but ideally you strive for interactive engagement with your followers in our opinion 

Made in Britain: Do we need to pin down the term "engagement"? I've also heard the term "make them stop scrolling"

Response: A picture of a cat or puppy usually does this. Make sure it is relevant to your post and business objectives. 

Response: Ideally the term engagement would be clearly defined - but, ironically, despite engagement being incredibly important, it’s also incredibly difficult to measure!

Response: All of the above really. However, if I had to sum it up in one word I would use engaging. If I don't react, then it isn't standing out. It can even be text only and still be engaging, although as we saw, posts with visuals and videos work best.

Response: I’d say memorable. Ultimately the goal of social media is to grab and keep the attention of prospective customers. If a campaign is memorable you stay in people’s minds - which is where you want to be when they’re in the decision-making stage!

Made in Britain: Is 'memorable' perhaps the toughest of the factors to pull off?

Response: Very much so - but definitely the most rewarding and effective factor if it can be achieved!

Response: Definitely agree! That first impression is what's going to make all the difference.

Made in Britain: What is memorable for one........ its about knowing the audience and customer/prospect base?

Response: Yes, admittedly one size may not fit all so to speak. Exactly, it’s about social listening - find out what your customer wants and work towards making your brand and message resonate with them to cement your brand in the minds of prospective customers.

Made in Britain: Do you think many businesses are as clued up on social listening as they should be?

Response: Definitely not. In fairness, it is something which many have only recently started to consider the value of, but - if they haven’t already - it’s certainly something which businesses should add to their marketing campaigns. It’s absolutely vital to know what you’re up against!

Response: Unfortunately I would say not. it depends a lot on resources dedicated to social media.

Made in Britain: I completely agree - it tends to serve as a learning opportunity too. Wonder when they'll introduce social listening into the job description of digital marketing? (is that where it sits?)

Response: It is and yes I agree with you

Response: It's a constantly evolving-clue Eg: Instagram's for sharing images, I learnt how to 'listen' to them. Instagram's announced they're no longer a sharing-images platform. It's a 'Reels' (video) platform. Can anyone be 'clued-up' in such an environment?

Response: All of the above, if it's creative it should be memorable

Made in Britain: Different, unique - BUT related to the business. That makes it even more difficult?

Response: The challenge of Marketing for a business!

Response: I do interactive. I want to hear what our products have helped people do in real life.

Made in Britain: How do you make it interactive?

Response: I use @twitter and then reply to people and they reply to me. About as simple as it gets.

Response: If anyone REALLY knew the answer we'd all know their name. If it was one of us, that person would be too busy to be chatting with us here, today. Best to experiment with all of 'those' & discover which mix works best for your business.

Made in Britain: "Works best" is a discussion for another day? What makes you stop scrolling at take note of particular posts 

Response: well now you've asked, I only (stop) look at posts that were not 'posted by me' if they're shown to me because of the keywords I've told the platform I'm interested in. I review that list each month. Otherwise I find I'm a sucker for those rabbit holes

Response: I would say memorable followed by interactive. A memorable campaign can lead to prospects following up for quite a while afterward, whilst interactive can result in current interactions during the campaign.

Response: Tough one... don't think there's any right answer but, 'Creative' perhaps? Also, could add 'Useful/Educational' to the list.

Response: Study your Customer and understand them. Think about what will engage them and at what time and with what media

Made in Britain: Useful/educational is a good one. Perhaps different campaigns can focus primarily on one of them and that one varies with campaign?

Response: Have a range of campaigns for different times of the day to different audiences. Not everyone is on at the same time. Try to relate to the customers schedules

Response: And different times. Know your customer personas. Be there to respond and keep the conversation going. 

Response: interaction, engagement, stop them scrolling ... does it matter what we each call it as long as we know what 'we' mean by it and have a clear objective to achieve with an understanding of what success will look-like to 'us' ... my view is call it what you like

Made in Britain: That's the key factor isn't it - what success looks like to 'us'. Are businesses clear in that do you think? its not just sales numbers is it?

Response: In the end, until we change global economics to the donut or budhist economic models ... yes it all comes down to money in the end. It's sad and it will one day change ... but for now, Shareholder-Value wins.

Response: Agree with @Addmaster you still need to produce content that resonates with your own particular audience to achieve interactive engagment.  No matter how entertaining if it doesn't connect with your audience they aren't going to follow or subscribe to your channels.

Response: I find all of these help something stand out, but for me all of them have to come with authenticity. It has to 'feel' right and not be forced or another case of bandwagon-jumping.

Made in Britain: Authenticity - maybe that is something we should have added to the list. Ironically we're talking non-manufactured content for manufacturers?

Response: Yes - to draw the manufacturing parallel it's probably producing content that has a clear purpose and high quality, rather than just churning out what someone else is making because it seems popular.

Response: It is really important that any campaign is truly authentic and reflects the true underlying values of the organisation.

Response: Here at SMP, we've recently done a brand refresh to ensure that our content is memorable and interactive. We wanted to focus on consistency, brand identity and ensure that our feed on all channels has suitable tone of voice. What SM channels performs best for your business?

Made in Britain: Does that mean the same tone of voice on each channel? or a slight modification?

Response: Slight modification always! Our audience differs on different channels.

Response: Awen CEO Daniel says: "Our belief is that mission and values come first, which then leads to the holistic idea of brand. From brand we then decide what kind of campaigns we create - whether they are creative, memorable, entertaining, unique, or interactive. Oh, but never robotic"

Made in Britain: I like the term "never robotic"

Response: I agree with most of what has already been said (late to the party again!) there isn't really a magic key factor, I feel that they all play a part, just some more than others depending on audience & subject matter. If anything is key then yes i think it's engagement.

Made in Britain: How do you drive engagement?

Response: Asking a question around your content/post, getting people to voice their opinions and then make sure that you reply to them individually.

Made in Britain: Do you find that many try this and end up with no comments?

Response: Oh hell yes I have seen some posts that fall flat on their face and you can almost hear the breeze blowing the tumbleweeds across the screen!

Made in Britain: would you delete a post like that after a period of time?

Response: I’ve found on both business and personal social media, the sillier the question the more response you receive - frustratingly! With the obvious exception of things like #mibhour and #ManufacturingHour, trivial questions garner much more response for some reason!

Made in Britain: Maybe because it is "social" media at the end of the day - thats something @Phil_Pond keeps reminding us (and quite rightly too)

Response: I suppose so. Although, personally, I still prefer my socialising to be somewhat meaningful!

Response: Depending on your manufacturing sector yes, absolutely all of the above you have suggested, but social media campaigns need to be relevant, engaging & personable to the audience you are targeting

Made in Britain: Relevant is an important term. Personable is so key as at the end of the day it is people reading these posts.

Question two: What makes for an effective subject line in an email marketing campaign? Any examples of good and bad ones? 

Response: Keep it short, relevant and personalised.

Response: Totally agree, especially regards the personalisation. It is so important to catch our receivers attention and make sure that they don't feel like they are receiving some generic email.

Response: Personalisation - as in name in the subject line?

Response: yes and also in the content. It must be relevant and can be personalised according to the customer personas and CRM data you have on the client.

Response: Nano-text and micro-text. Front loaded to get the attention of the viewer. Make a promise and fulfil that promise in the body of the email or post.

Response: Please explain nano/micro text - not phrases I've come across for some reason.

Response: These are the first 2 and 4 words in the title or post. People scan read and pick up on the first few words. If they do not interest the reader, they will scroll past/delete before getting to the crux of the message. I have a training module on it

Made in Britain: That's an excellent point about fulfilling the promise. Wonder how many actually do?

Response: Not many! I have been training this for many years. Every letter counts so make them relevant when making a promise in your titles.

Response: It depends on the segment, needs to be eye-catching with a call to action

Response: We suggest testing subject lines and headers with your particular target group...what attracts one segment won't necessarily work with the other.

Made in Britain: If you send email campaigns out very regularly do businesses have the time/resource to do this?

Response: yes as you can create two lots with A/B testing techniques and edit the headers based on the immediate feedback in terms of opening, clicking etc.

Response: It can be as simple as changing the order of the contents. I worked with one client that was speaking to three distinct personas. they segmented their email list and changed the order of the content to put the interest of the target first.

Response: Oooh, now you're asking! I'm going to start with a trick I absolutely HATE. Anything that starts with a "Re:" it's a semantic trick designed to deceive. Don't start a conversation with me based on a lie

Response: As few words as possible. Editing skills. Re-editing skills. Words expressing something from your targets viewpoint. Words of interest to your target. Words that have nothing to do with what 'you' want and everything to do with what your target wants.

Made in Britain: Should these 'few words' be similar across multiple emails or varied? take monthly newsletters - same subject line, different one?

Response: If you can't personalise things with today's array of technology, then give the job role/task to someone who can.

Response: 100%. It's a debate I have with many tech cos producing "productivity tools." Yes, you can do things en mass but it means nothing if it's not effective. There's too much emphasis on the former and not latter.

Response: Agree with @MarketAccents, keep it short, snappy & relevant, there is nothing worse than opening what you think you'll be interested in to find the body of the message is irrelevant (as @NigelTPacker mentions). I find it SO annoying, I usually don't bother opening future 1's

Response: Subject lines that tend to grab the readers attention are urgency, offers, relevancy and plain old curiosity! Make them personalised and give your audience a reason to want to open your email. A/B testing is a good way to test your subject line.

Response: The clichés of News last opportunity and other pressure techniques have been used too often. people are aware of them and so are the spam filters. best avoided. 

Response: One rule of thumb is 7 words as that is the length it would appear in most peoples inboxes

Question three: What techniques can help drive traffic to your exhibition stand at in-person events and shows? 

Response: Offers to all visitors via email campaign, or google ads prior to the event. Collaboration with other complimentary suppliers at the exhibition

Made in Britain: The second point is interesting - what sort of things can you do in collaboration?

Response: For example at #PackagingInnovation2019 we collaborated with @RecyclingAssoc and had an advert / poster on their stand

Response: What was the response like?

Response: It was useful to have our branding on their stand and obviously we could promote their brand on our stand highlighting our relationship with them

Response: Involve your supply chain and get them there on your stand

Response: The good old goody bag!! Post on social media etc weeks/days beforehand to say that anyone visiting your stand will get a goody bag and watch them fall over themselves for that 'awesome' freebie!

Made in Britain: Whats the best thing to put in the goody bag?

Response: One of your products. If the visitor is not interested in your products then they will not buy in the future. 

Response: once again relevant give-aways, and bear in mind sustainability, environmentally friendly and need we say it - made in britain products.

Response: Oooh now that's a tough one, depends on event, customer, service you provide etc. I've found useful items such as tea/coffee mugs, coasters, desk tidies, things that will 'stay around' on a desk. We sent out custom coasters coated with our MicroGuadr™ Anti-microbial coating.

Made in Britain: I've always liked the ones that hang around on a desk. I've always worried when the attendees say 'i'll take that home for my kids' - is that a bad choice of giveaway?

Response: Yeah I know what you mean, but seeing said item at home in the hands of their child can still have the same effect..... or said child can drive them to despair with the giveaway & they never want to see it (not the child!)/you again.... yes that is the voice of experience!

Response: Great visuals, customer interaction and outreach beforehand. We've had a great response in the past where we had free merchandise and once we even gave away free beer and that went down a treat

Made in Britain: Free drinks at 4.30pm does bring in many people to the stands. The beforehand aspects are so important PROVIDING you can get to the people attending?

Response: Eye-catching stand, unique, high-quality stand and images

Made in Britain: The unique stand really can make a big difference. Do you have a creative one?

Response: Engage with attendees before the event if attendee information is available. I've heard facebook geo targeting can also be quite effective.

Made in Britain: thats the key challenge, being able get to the attendees before the event. BE VERY CAREFUL of anyone trying to sell attendee lists.......there are plenty around

Response: remember GDPR....

Response: Have an open plan stand avoid barriers. Get everyone trained. Be happy, alert, and active. No sitting / slouching. Walk into the concourse, watch for interest of those passing, offer coffee at the stand. A busy stand is social proof creating interest. 

Made in Britain: Get everyone trained - absolutely vital. How many times do you see inviting stands with stand personnel not as inviting?

Response: I have sold a few training courses to MD's when attending exhibitions. I couldn't help myself. The people on the stand were sitting reading a paper and not paying attention to the people passing

Response: In addition to training it's also about keeping energy levels up too! Plenty of breaks, hydration & nutrition is required to ensure good presence. As we know, expos can be incredibly tiring.

Response: Having enough people on stand to allow for breaks is important. It is hard work.

Response: Absolutely. Also having enough people there to allow individuals to go wondering and do some competitive intel is quite a good use of time and resources.

Response: To steal a phrase from Nigel - generating a conversational, affable vibe. I go to stands where there is bustling activity, where breaking the ice is easy, where presenters can relay value to me quickly & where the business has something I am interested in.

Made in Britain: Busy stands get busier. My reasoning is that people who want to 'browse' can do so without necessarily being pounced on by the rep. As the reps are busy talking to others. That is often something that businesses don't get, some people just want to look.

Response: We've found that personalised invites & flexible meeting times with clients/potential clients to discuss their requirements, in which we can showcase & explain our product portfolio on a personal basis by our Sales & Marketing team are fundamental.

Response: A professional eye catching stand which is branded. Inviting & approachable staff.

Question four: How useful is it to support national campaigns and national/international days? 

Response: It’s a great way of humanising a brand - supporting for relatable events. From a corporate angle, it’s worth commenting on trending topics to stay relevant and reach a wider audience. But careful not to stray too far from your industry - it’s best to stay relevant to your work

Response: They are excellent opportunities to gain extra exposure as they will be very visible. Relevance is still important otherwise you just look like you have jumped on the bandwagon.

Made in Britain: similar to what @JB_SpringsLtd said "bandwagoning" is so easy to do but needs to be avoided. Who decides what you support and what you don't?

Response: I think it should be up to someone who you trust has a firm understanding of your brand’s voice, messaging and positioning

Response: Marketing Director or Owner/Stakeholder - these can have very different views?

Response: True, I would say Marketing Director - provided they have been sufficiently briefed on the how the business wishes to come across and be portrayed online/on social media

Response: I'd agree, there also needs to be some consideration about investors too. many stories of overseas investors with 'different values' to others who get very upset at some support that is given.

Response: Ideally you have decided that in your strategy and the team in implementing it. What you support should be aligned to it.

Response: As long as it fits with the nature of your business then it can be very useful, if not then avoid. Doing something for doing somethings sake is futile & disingenuous

Response: It's useful & important for the success of many great causes, movements & action groups .... on a personal level. It's useful on a business level if the company has a genuine connection to the campaign/day. If it doesn't as @NigelTPacker said: don't do it.

Response: Must be relevant to the company and its potential customers. there is a list on the UN website for some international days.

Response: There is also the potential of creating your own national day to further the goals of your industry. Get others involved and make a big fuss about it. It is a long term project. August 16, 2021 is Elvis Presley Day!

Response: Where possible we do  - building relevant content/campaigns round these with our clients  The hashtag then brings up posts in the conversation #madeinbritain increasing exposure ideally

Response: We do this occasionally, as long as it is relevant and it has useful information, otherwise it gets lost in all the other messages on the day

Response: Make sure you choose days that directly relate to your business or the industry you’re in and avoid those that don't align with your business's personality or views.

Response: Agree on a part about humanisation. We do think that you need to support mainly relevant national days and campaigns!

Response: Again I agree with what has already been said. I also think that in the right circumstances it can help personalise your brand and say a lot about a companies belief system/ethos. But yeah don't jump on the bandwagon to help sales, people see through that and it's negative.

We tend not to edit the contributor's Twitter-speak text so if anybody would like to understand this better, email and I will try to get a clearer explanation.

Join Made in Britain on Twitter at 1pm every Thursday for #MadeinBritainHour. We engage with everybody, members and non-members alike (some of whom become members as a result). Hopefully, see you there.

This page has links to all the previous Twitter conversations we have 'caught in the net': CLICK HERE.

By Made in Britain 5 months ago | Made in Britain news

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