AspenCore Announces 'Mind of the Engineer' Study

AspenCore has announced that its 'Mind of the Engineer' study will once again be taking place, inviting engineers to participate via surveys that will be going out into the field in June.

As a study that takes place every two years, AspenCore has spoken with tens of thousands of hardware, software, and test engineers, as well as students, field-support employees, and engineering managers worldwide over the last 30 years. The 'Mind of the Engineer' survey not only provides insights into the current electronics engineering landscape but also helps predict how engineering jobs are evolving, and where technology is taking the profession.

Engineers also share the challenges they face, the resources they need, and how they spend their time.

As we emerge from the pandemic, the results of this study are sure to be interesting for the industry, as we gain insight into several areas of the electronics engineering landscape. Luckily, we don't have to wait too long, as the results will be available around November for electronica 2022.

A Napier Webinar: How to Crush Your First Paid LinkedIn Campaign

Paid LinkedIn campaigns can offer a great RoI, are low cost and quick to set up. However, the success of these campaigns relies on the finer details when setting up, and there are a few things marketers need to consider to be successful.

Napier recently held a webinar 'How to Crush Your First Paid LinkedIn Campaign', sharing insights into how B2B marketers can crush their first paid LinkedIn campaign, by exploring:

  • How to define the best audience for your campaign
  • Recommendations to improve performance
  • Why demographics are so important
  • Ad format options
  • Bidding tips

Register to view our webinar on demand by clicking here, and why not get in touch to let us know if our insights helped you.

Napier Webinar: ‘How to Crush Your First Paid LinkedIn Campaign' Transcript

Speakers: Mike Maynard

Okay, good afternoon, everyone. Thank you for attending the latest Napier webinar. Today, we're going to talk about LinkedIn. And so our webinar is going to tell you how to crush your first LinkedIn campaign. Now, obviously, LinkedIn is a platform that people use for a lot of different things. But in our case, what we're going to talk about today is we're going to talk about how to use LinkedIn, for Account Based Marketing, in particular, so it's really understanding how to do very targeted campaigns on LinkedIn. So really, what we're going to try and do today comes down to help you understand what works for paid LinkedIn campaigns. So we're looking to help you crush your paid LinkedIn campaigns, typically paid LinkedIn campaigns have some element of Account Based Marketing. And we'll talk a little bit about why that is, as we go through. So what are we going to crush today? Well, the first thing we're going to crush is audiences, we're going to look at how to get the right audience, and how to make sure you target the right people on LinkedIn. We're going to talk about using multiple campaigns. And we're going to help you understand why maybe just running a single campaign is not always the best idea. We're going to talk about demographics. And in particular, how LinkedIn can give you the demographics of the people who are interacting with your campaigns, which is super important, something that a lot of other platforms are completely unable to do. So you can't just target based on demographics. But you can also understand the traffic demographics as well. So for example, not only who you're showing the ad to who you're targeting, but who actually sees it, and then also who actually engages with that ad. We're going to look at advert formats, which obviously is very important. LinkedIn offers a large number of advert formats. And finally, we're going to talk about bidding. So we're going to help you find out how to bid for LinkedIn ads, and what's the best strategies are.

Now obviously, LinkedIn is quite a complex platform. So we're not going to go into a huge amount of detail in any of these sections. But what we're going to do is give you the key things, the top tips that are going to make sure that your campaign that you run on LinkedIn is successful, there will be some additional things you can do that will optimise and improve the campaign. But if you follow these rules, you can pretty much guarantee that your first campaign is going to go out of the box, being successful working generating the results you want. So it's going to help you avoid all the pitfalls and also take advantage of some of the tools and techniques we've developed here at Napier. So LinkedIn advertising, firstly, is good and bad. And I think most people understand the reason why it's good. LinkedIn has almost uniquely demographic and thermographic targeting. So you can target people based upon you know, information about themselves. But you can also target them based upon information about the companies that they work for, indeed, companies they've worked for in the past. So this is incredibly powerful.

And particularly when you're looking at running a Account Based Marketing Campaign, it's obviously vitally important to have that firmographic information, because you want to target people in particular companies or particular industry sectors. And so LinkedIn is quite often the first place that people go for Account Based Marketing, and very often also is the place that they will stay because it is incredibly effective. There is of course, a downside to LinkedIn. And LinkedIn primary downside is cost. If you look at costs, whether that's measured in terms of cost per 1000, for impressions, cost per click, typically LinkedIn is very, very expensive. So if you look at for example, some of the Account Based Marketing platforms like enrich would be one, one example or demand base, then these platforms will offer much, much lower cost of 1000s and cost per clicks. The important thing to say though, is because we've got this demographic and firmographic targeting, LinkedIn gives you very high quality traffic. And if you get it right although you're paying more to show the Agile paying more For each click, you can actually end up with a much lower cost per action. So whether that's generating a lead or a sale or or an inquiry, quite often LinkedIn can actually be cost effective when you get to the end of that customer journey, because the quality is so high and the targeting so good. So, you know, the first thing to say is clearly with a high cost, you don't want to make mistakes. And this is why you need to understand where things go wrong, and how you can avoid the pitfalls. But also LinkedIn absolutely has the potential to be one of your best value advertising channels, if not the best value. Now, before we start, obviously, there's a number of alternatives to LinkedIn. So you know, you can advertise in trade media, you can use ABM platforms, you want to conduct ABM campaigns, you can use other social media platforms.

So you know, whether that be something like Facebook, which certainly some b2b tech companies use successfully, Google searches and other way to advertise Google Display ads retargeting email, non advertising options. And, you know, indeed, if you go, you know, completely to the extreme, then, you know, banners at Piccadilly Circus would be another way to advertise to potential audience. So, why would people use LinkedIn, it really comes back to this targeting, the fact that LinkedIn brings with it information about who people work for, and what they do in their role, is really the most valuable thing that LinkedIn can can deliver to you. And that can be very important. If you know that your product is something that is bought by CFOs, within large, fast moving consumer goods companies, then you can target those people precisely on LinkedIn, you avoid wasting money on people who are not going to be decision makers. And that therefore means that LinkedIn can be incredibly effective. Of course, you have to be careful about you know, being too precise in your targeting. One of the fundamental concepts of b2b marketing is the concept of a decision making unit, or a buying committee if you're American. And these basically are groups of people who get together to make decisions about buying. So typically, you see not only people who make decisions, but people who influence the decision people are gatekeepers, etc.

So it's really important when you're looking at LinkedIn is not focus only on decision making. But make sure you also have ways to reach the other influences. But assuming we've got a campaign, we're looking at what to do. And we know that we've got some very specific targets based upon company and job title. If we look at that, LinkedIn makes an excellent choice. So let's assume we've picked LinkedIn, you know, what's the first step? Where do we go? Well, as you build a campaign in LinkedIn, the very first thing you'll do is you'll actually create audiences. Now, audiences are obviously the people that you're showing the ad to. And this is an area where it's really important to get it right. Because these people we're trying to reach, we need to get them into focus, we need to make sure we get exactly the people we're trying to target. And LinkedIn is there to help you. But before we start, I think there's an important warning that we need to make before we kick off with actually looking in detail about the audiences. And this is really simple. LinkedIn, would love you to spend as much money as possible on the platform. This is no different from any other advertising platform. If you look at Google Search, Google display, or indeed trade media or anywhere else, everyone wants you to spend as much money as possible with them. But of course, with LinkedIn, this basically means that LinkedIn is continually pushing you to get larger and larger audiences. Now, sometimes that makes sense. And sometimes it doesn't. So we might be looking to target you know, a very broad range of people who are involved in a purchasing decision amongst a very wide range of different audience members. Alternatively, we might want to be very specific and pick out one or two very specific people in very specific organisations. And so that might be for example, that your product is only bought by a very specific person or very specific job role, or it might be only applicable to a very small number of companies. I mean, if you look at Napier, for example, and Napier, we can onboard maybe two new clients a month tops that would that would be the most we could onboard.

And so what we don't want to do is to help drive masses and masses of inquiries, because we're not going to be able to service them we're going to disappoint them. And we have other clients who are very very specific as well. I mean freaks example, one of my favourite clients that we have built baggage handling systems for airports, you can only sell a baggage handling system if somebody is building or completely refurbishing an airport terminal. And actually, that's a very small number of potential buyers every year. So when LinkedIn says, Oh, you've only got 1000, people maybe should have 100,000, you know, yes, that would help LinkedIn, you might get people engaged in the airport industry, but you're not going to get people who are going to buy, because they're literally aren't that many people ready to buy an in market at that time. So actually, quite often, when we work with clients, and particularly some of the clients who are selling the high value, lower volume products, what we find is that they've got very, very specific people they want to reach. And so this means you quite often end up targeting groups or audiences that are close to the minimum size. And we've actually run Account Based Marketing campaigns where we have literally run to audiences that are smaller than the minimum LinkedIn audience. And the only way to do that, then is to add another group of people on. So we've done all sorts of things from adding related customers who aren't really the core audience, but might be there all the way through to where we literally wanted to count specific campaigns, we've added the Napier team on to make up the numbers to allow the campaign to run under LinkedIn to hit that minimum number. So we can run a very specific campaign with ads that are specifically about a particular target customer, and not show those to companies that are not relevant. So quite often dealing with how you get that minimum audience. And as I say, particularly if your product has high value, low volume, is a really interesting challenge.

So what we're looking for really is precision, we're looking for really precise targeting. And you know, the really interesting thing is precision costs money. So LinkedIn basically, will charge you more than more precisely targeted your audiences. So if you increase the number of filters you use, that will increase your cost per click. So if you start off and just have company and job title, and then you want to look at things like seniority, or something like that, adding those extra filters on will add extra cost. And basically, everything you do is going to cost you more, so the more you target down, the more it will cost. For example, job function generally will have a smaller impact on the cost per click, than job title, job title is clearly more precise, job function is more broad, it's a really simple indication of how LinkedIn prices in a cost around precision. And it's easy to look at that and start seeing your cost per click going up and start getting stressed. But the most important thing, I think, if you're running a campaign, is to remember that almost always, if you're targeting for a reason, extra precision will be worth the extra cost. And it's that's important as long as you thought through who you really want to reach. So again, for example, we talked about the issue of decision making unit, you know, maybe you want to target the influencers, as well as the decision makers to help get that decision made better. So it's always worth thinking through and making sure you've really understood what you're trying to do, and making sure that the extra precision makes sense. But in general, I would always say go and try and target your ideal audience, rather than open up the campaign and target. Too many people that are irrelevant, because in general, you'll find that doing that will produce poor results. Just one thing to say on precision, though, if you're looking to target the C suite, it's going to cost you money. So typically, a CFO CEO, anybody like that is actually very expensive to target. The reason is, is that lots of people lazily target them, they have a product, they think their product is so important. The CEO is the only person you know who's going to get involved, he's going to demand to drive the decision. And so the CEOs, the person they target or the CFO, is the person targeted because they are going to be the person who makes the decision. Quite often. That's not true. Quite often people who are lower in the organisation actually are really influential, often tend to be the decision makers. So my advice is, the only exception on precision is when it comes to the C suite. And when it comes to the C suite, I would only target the C suite, if they really are your ideal audience. If they're not your ideal audience, then have a rethink and target people are going to give you better value for your campaign.

Okay, so how do you target Well, this isn't gonna be a lecture or a webinar. Now that goes through how to operate LinkedIn, if anybody's interested, you know, feel free to message me. And I'd be really happy to set up a session where we run through how to use LinkedIn and build audiences. But what we're going to do is we're going to start giving you some targeting tips. And these are the things that we found really make a difference. So the first thing is to look at using permanent location. And in general, for most of our clients, we find across all programmatic platforms, that actually, when you want to target someone, you want to target them, because that's where they're permanently based, not necessarily because they've got an interest or they've visited there and in recent times, so we always recommend targeting permanent location, rather than opening it up to a location where they've been to recently. And this is particularly true of business, to business advertising, because people tend to travel I know, they haven't travelled very much in the last two years. But as business travel comes back, I think you'll find that, you know, if it's not there at their permanent location, then it's becoming less and less precise. If you're not targeting a specific list of company names, which quite often happens, and Account Based Marketing, you're targeting a sector, I would always recommend using company size as a filter. And this is because there's disproportionately large number of small companies, to big companies.

And so if you're targeting enterprises, you really want to rule out the SMEs, because that would massively skew your activities. But also, if you have a fairly general job title, you might want to rule out the enterprise as if your sweet spot is SME. Because actually, the enterprises might have a large number of people with a particular job title. So company size is very important if you're not entering specific company names to target. However, if you can always target specific companies, we spend a lot of time at Napier, building target company lists. And almost without exception, we find that building a list of specific companies and targeting them by name, rather than targeting an industry sector produces far better results. And our clients actually get far better return on investment for paying us to do the research, and then running fewer ads, but making them much more targeted than just targeting an industry sector. So I would always say look at using specific companies, it is worth the time and effort to do the research if you can do that. I mentioned job titles and job functions. Again, when we're looking at precision, more precision is generally better. Job Titles are almost always better than job functions. job functions are much broader, they can be much less accurate, you get much more of a percentage of spurious matches. So you're showing ads to people who don't really make the decision. Job Titles are difficult, because obviously, people doing the same job can actually be called different things in different organisations. And particularly if you're looking to target multiple industries or markets, their job titles can become very difficult to actually manage and get right. But again, generally, it's worth putting in the effort to get a list a complete list of job titles, rather than taking a shortcut and just putting in job functions. And then we've got two very specific tips. When you're starting a campaign, I would always say do not enable audience expansion, and do not enable the LinkedIn network. So audience expansion will target people who are like the audience you've defined, but not within that audience specification.

And the LinkedIn network will target people on other platforms outside of the call LinkedIn platform. When you start off, both of these can actually be bad, for two reasons. One, they they tend to be less effective, they tend to reduce the performance of your campaign. And secondly, they're actually blurring the data, what you really want to do is look at, you know, what your targeting is actually delivering. And so particularly audience expansion, can be a really bad thing to choose, because then you're actually not necessarily showing your ad to the people you think you're showing. And you can't make great decisions. Now, having said that, it doesn't mean to say you shouldn't target and includes either the LinkedIn network audience expansion later on in the campaign. And that's always something that you can look at. So for example, if your campaign is incredibly successful, but you don't know how to expand out the audience to make it bigger, you've got more budget, you want more leads, then certainly adding audience expansion can be very effective there. So I think it's always worth looking at once the campaign is running. But I would never target through audience expansion or using the LinkedIn network.

First time, it's much easier to manage just on one platform. And with the precise targeting you've defined So those are our our targeting tips. I mean, generally very simple. And actually, you know, interestingly, primarily based around companies and job titles, which is really the core of most of the campaigns that we see running successfully on LinkedIn, it's about finding the people in the right roles in the right companies. And that is what LinkedIn gives you this firmographic and demographic targeting. So the next thing to look at is setting up campaigns and how many campaigns you set up. So my wonderful father used to have this saying that he taught us from, I think, when I was a baby onwards, that there's only one thing better than one ice cream. And that's to ice creams. And so there's only thing one thing better than a LinkedIn campaign is two campaigns. And so the issue is, when you run a campaign in LinkedIn, there's no option to have differentiated messaging and language for different parts of the audience. So if you want to run ads in different languages, you need to split into multiple campaigns equally, if you're targeting, for example, two different job roles, you need to split into two different campaigns to have different messaging. Now, obviously, if you're right down at the minimum audience size, you may not be able to split into two campaigns. But wherever you can, you almost always get the opportunity to tweak the campaign and make it more relevant and more personalised for the audience. So I would always try and split into multiple campaigns to allow differentiated messaging to different audience segments, whether that be by location, language, job role, etc. The other thing to say about segmentation, and this is super important is it lets you understand more about what works and what doesn't work. So once you've segmented multiple campaigns, you can get reporting based on different segments much more easily. So as an example, let's say, we were looking at targeting people who were in the automotive industry. And we're looking at two sectors. One was electronics engineers, one was test engineers, we could bundle them all together, they probably would have, you know, if we're selling test equipment, they probably have, you know, very similar ads, the messaging wouldn't be hugely different. But once we start running that campaign, we then don't know whether it's the electronics engineers or the test engineers, that are really driving the response. There are ways to do this. But it's harder to get that segmenting into two campaigns removes any questions around which group is performing better. And it allows you to better understand what works and what doesn't work in your campaign. And it also allows you to optimise more as well. So for example, let's say the test engineers, the campaign was working really well, the design engineers, it was not, you might want to tweak the messaging for the design engineers to see if you can improve that performance. So always look to split into multiple campaigns. The good news is, is if you don't split into multiple campaigns, there is a solution that is incredibly helpful. And I call it the magic demographics button.

So when you're looking in LinkedIn ads campaign results, there's a magic button called demographics. And it lets you split down the results, it will tell you how many impressions and how many clicks, for example, if it's sponsored content, you're getting a particular categories. And it's actually very detailed, it follows the LinkedIn category. So you can look at who's who's seeing the ad and who's responding by job function, by job title, by company, by company, industry, by seniority, by company size, by location, by country or region. And even by county if you're running in the UK. So it's incredibly powerful to let you dig in and find out what's working and what's not. And it's powerful for two reasons. One is clearly you can see where you're getting the best results, but you can also see if you're failing to target a particular group. So let's say for example, we'll go back to the campaign where we're trying to target design engineers and test engineers, you might think that those two audiences are roughly the same size, you might expect the impressions to be split fairly evenly. But when you look at demographics, you might find that it's really, you know, 90% of the impressions are going to design engineers, and only 10% to test engineers. So this demographics button is super helpful to help you understand whether you're actually reaching the people you think you're targeting. And there's also always interesting results where you look at some of the demographics and you think that's not who I'm targeting. And like any of these programmatic systems, LinkedIn within its algorithm, you know, sometimes seems to do some strange things.

So it's always worth checking to make sure that you're not hitting an audience that you really don't want to hit as well. So, the magic demographics button is really important. And you know, it's very important when you're looking at audiences. Obviously, you can't actually click that button until you have some results. So to get some results, you've got to run some ads. So the next question is, what do we do in terms of ad format. There's lots of different LinkedIn ad formats that are available. So there's sponsored content, which can be image ads, carousel ads, video ads, event ads, they're sponsored messages, which are conversation ads and message ads, those lead generation ads that link straight to a lead generation form. And there's also a couple of other categories. So text ads, spotlight, ads, and follower ads. And what we're gonna do is we're going to look at, you know, some of the most important formats, and talk about how to use them, and why you should use them. So the first format to look at is the single image sponsored content ad, it is the standard LinkedIn thing you see, it's a bit of text, an image and a link to a landing page. Typically, this is great, it's fairly simple. It's something that, you know, people understand they're very used to seeing on LinkedIn. And if I'm, to be honest, it really does look quite like an organic post. I mean, it's always marked as being promoted. And you can see, for example, underneath the company name, fixed x, it says, How many followers and then promoted. So we can see that the ad is being promoted here. So it's an ad, not an organic post, but it still looks like an organic post. So people are very receptive to that. It's obviously not very striking, it doesn't really stand out, though.

So the next option is carousel ads. And the carousel ads are basically very similar to the the standard single image ads, they just rotate around multiple images. And these can be very effective, particularly at walking people through a sequence of things. And you can see here, this example, which is from LinkedIn, actually is a logical sequence of things, rather than just being, you know, random related images. So really thinking about the images you use, and the carousel ads are important. You'll also notice that here with this LinkedIn demo, we've actually got text on the image. So we're rotating text by placing text on the image, you can't rotate text as pure text, you just need to put it on the image. So carousel ads are great. And typically, if you've got multiple images you can use particularly they can tell a story, then carousel ads tend to be a much better option than the standard single image sponsored content ads. You can also run things like video, video is very similar to a standard sponsored content with a single image, you just replace the image with video.

Of course, the important thing to remember is that video can be very much more engaging. Now, one thing to mention about video is that video tends to perform very well as organic posts. So video actually causes people to stop and look, as you stop. And look, LinkedIn detects that you've not scrolled past that particular post. And so you build up dwell time. And dwell time is a key part of the LinkedIn algorithm for deciding how many impressions your particular post gets organically. So video can perform extremely well, if you're thinking about running a spa, UNsponsored. So organic posts, when it comes to sponsorship, you're paying for that ad to be shown. So there is a benefit in stopping people. But sometimes you can have a video ad, or video post that performs extremely well organically, and perhaps is a bit disappointing when you pay for it. And that's because we're getting much more reach with the organic posts than we'd normally get. But we're getting no more reach with the paid posts. Because the reach we get is defined by how much we pay, not how interested people are in the actual post.

Now, one of my favourites is conversation, ads, conversation, ads are amazing. It's almost real engagement. So what it allows you to do is it allows you to set up effectively a conversation in messages. So you can send a message and into somebody's inbox, they then have options to click to respond to your initial message. So it's not truly AI looking at someone typing back messages. There's a limited decision tree based upon having certain options, you can click, but it is almost real engagement. And that's exciting. And where we've tested conversation ads with clients and run them. They tend to be incredibly engaging, and they tend to work really well. But there is one sad thing and that is unfortunately, you can't run conversation ads in the EU. And this is the message you get from LinkedIn. Talking about the fact that we can't actually legally put ads into inboxes of individuals in the US so if you're targeting America conversation as a really good option. But unfortunately not available over here. Lead Gen ads are really interesting. So lead gen ads let you generate leads directly from LinkedIn. So you create an ad and you also create a form. And that form is hosted on LinkedIn, when people click on the ad, they see the form from LinkedIn. And even better, the form is automatically filled with with the details that you've asked for. So the user can see which details you've asked for, they see what they're submitting. But it means they don't have to type in you know, their company and their job title, etc, etc. So for b2b, this is absolutely amazing in terms of gathering more information without causing friction, from the leads point of view. So lead gen forms a really good and you know, typically they're built around content offers, like most content marketing lead gen. And generally speaking, it's actually better to send people to a lead gen form, than it is to send people to a landing page using sponsored content. And that's measuring cost per lead. However, it's not always the case. So I would always recommend if you're doing a lead gen campaign, to benchmark both running a sponsored content routing, reaching to a landing page, and also a lead gen campaign to find out what delivers you the lowest cost per lead, because we do sometimes find and obviously, LinkedIn effectively charges a premium.

For those lead gen ads, we do sometimes find that it's actually more effective to route people to a landing page. And that's dependent on a lot of factors, your audience the amount of information you want, and also particularly the content offer. And this is something I think that maybe people perhaps don't think through enough. So if we're looking to use LinkedIn to generate leads, whether that's, you know, through content or for an event or anything else, the offer is much more important than the format. So where we see a difference between sponsored content to a landing page, and a native lead gen ad, that impact is much, much smaller than it will be around the content you're offering. So you know, here's an example of, I think, some pretty compelling content, so Cognizant offering after the virus. So a really compelling sounding piece of content. And this content is also incredibly important, because a lot of people want to know, what's going to happen after COVID, you know, doesn't go away, but becomes less of a problem. So people really need to know this information. So the offer is more important than the format. So I'd always say, you know, yes, it's important to experiment, but don't get hung up on it, the offer is more important. But most importantly, it's not the offer itself. It's actually the title of the content piece that really matters. It's not what you're giving people it's not what's in the content. It's the title.

And again, sometimes, you know, people forget that if I'm a prospect, and I'm filling in a lead gen form, the only thing I really know, is the title of the content. I'm asking for, I don't know what's inside and it whether it's good quality, bad quality, I don't know what the layouts like, I don't know what's written in there, whether it's, you know, lots of text, or it's very short. All I know is the title, because that's all I've seen until I've completed the registration form. And by then it's too late for me to decide to opt out, I'm already a lead. So always remember, titles are important. And I feel that sometimes with content marketing, people are not spending enough time A B testing different titles for the same piece of content to see which one works best. That's a great tip to improve your lead generation, whether you're doing it on LinkedIn, or actually doing it on your website, marketing automation system or any other platform. So okay, so we've developed some ads, we've got the right content, we've understood the audience. I mean, pretty much now the next thing is to look at how we bid on LinkedIn. And generally speaking, just automating the bid is generally the best option. So we automate for maximum delivery. Here we see the postman hopefully, getting maximum delivery, running around at full speed, being encouraged by somebody's dog. And generally speaking, automation is the best route. Sometimes however, people want to come in and manually bid and generally speaking, that's where you're trying to reduce the cost per impression or cost per click. And my advice is, if you want to bid manually always bid low. And in fact, generally speaking, our standard tactic with with a manual bid is to go in and bid the minimum bid that LinkedIn will let you do. Now it's interesting, LinkedIn won't tell you the minimum bid straightaway. The way to do that is to bid a pound or $1. And then LinkedIn will very kindly tell you how much you've got to increase the bid to get to the minimum. So LinkedIn is trying to hide this minimum bid, they're trying to encourage you to bid more. Generally speaking, at the start of the campaign, the lowest bids are the best options, they might mean that you can do your experimentation at lowest cost. And then once you know the campaign is effective, so your content offers working the ad formats, right, the messaging is right in the ad, the audiences right, then maybe you want to try and look to bid higher to get perhaps some of the more difficult to reach recipients. But initially, our advice would always be bid the minimum. And generally speaking, we don't see a huge impact. In bidding the minimum versus bidding higher in terms of quality. You will, however, get typically more impressions and more clicks if you increase your bid. So it can make your campaign run faster. But it won't generate more results.

And it will make it more expensive. So that's really a summary of of you know, most of the top tips that we've developed for LinkedIn. This has built through a number of presentations we've had to clients and discussions. And I think there's a couple of things I'd like to leave you with. You know, the first thing is whatever the challenge is willing to in particular around high cost per click, good campaigns on LinkedIn typically deliver amazing ROI. So the ability to target really works well on LinkedIn. And this firmographic and demographic data is super important for most campaigns. However, if you get it wrong, you don't, you know, listen to our tips, and you start doing things that targeting the wrong people, or using the wrong message or having the wrong format. Actually, LinkedIn can get very expensive very quickly. So you know, I think it's important to balance this. It also is important to say that actually to do good LinkedIn campaigns requires a lot of work, it requires work, building that audience, particularly with our clients, you know, building an audience of specific companies and very specific job titles. To get that targeting right. It requires time to split into multiple campaigns, so that you're sending the right message to each audience. And it takes time to analyse and optimise going forward to make sure you continue to improve those campaigns. So whilst LinkedIn is great, it's not always the quickest and easiest platform to generate great campaigns on you need to put the work in. But if you do, you will get the return on investment.

So thank you very much for listening. If anyone has any questions, if you'd like to type them into the chat, I'd be really happy to answer those questions. So if anyone's got anything they'd like to ask please type it into the chat, and I'll be more than happy to answer them. I'll just give you a second or two to type them in. Okay, I've got one question that that's actually come in. And it's asking about retargeting. And the question is, should you use LinkedIn? With retargeting now, actually, this is really interesting, because one of the things I haven't talked about, is you can actually retarget people on LinkedIn. So you can build retargeting audiences on LinkedIn. So that is certainly very effective. You might want to target people who you know, for example, bins or certain areas of your website. You can also obviously retarget people who you've driven to the website through LinkedIn ads using something like Google. Now, the interesting thing is LinkedIn is very expensive in terms of cost per click. So generally speaking, I would always recommend that if you're doing retargeting, you typically drive people to the website using LinkedIn. That creates a very high quality audience so that traffic is going to be great quality. And then you use something that's much lower cost like Google to serve retargeting ads, whether that's retargeting through display or search or both. So I would always recommend tying Google retargeting into LinkedIn, that generally is the best way to do it. Okay, so I really appreciate your time. All of you listening. If anyone has any questions, please feel free to email me. My email is on the slide Mike at Napier b2b dot com. And, you know, I'd love to talk to you about your LinkedIn campaigns and how we can help you optimise them. And if not, you know go out there Have fun put the work in and hopefully your crush your next LinkedIn campaign Thank you very much.

A Napier Podcast: Interview with Tim Langley - CANDDi

In this podcast episode, we interview Tim Langley, CEO and Founder at CANDDi, a digital intelligence tracking platform.

Tim shares his journey to founding CANDDi, and how the platform can help B2B marketers be more proactive by gathering data which allows them to engage with leads both at the top and bottom of the sales funnel.

Listen to the podcast now via the links below:

Transcript: Interview with Tim Langley - CANDDi

Speakers: Mike Maynard, Tim Langley

Mike: Thanks for listening to marketing b2b Tech, the podcast from Napier, where you can find out what really works in b2b marketing today. Welcome to the latest episode of marketing b2b technology from Napier. Today, I've got Tim Langley, who's described himself as the founder, the CEO and chief dogsbody at CANDDi. Welcome to the podcast, Tim.

Tim: Thanks, Mike. Thanks for having me.

Mike: So, Tim, I mean, I mean, the first thing is, you know, how do you get a career that lets you end up with Chief dogs by the CANDDi? Yeah. How did you get to this point?

Tim: Oh, you know, I think that's, I think that's a very easy question to answer. So I grew up and studied maths at university, did a year working for a for a startup, and then decided, You know what, I think it'd be fun to be running my own business. That was nearly 20 years ago. And how'd you get how'd you get a title like, Chief dog's body? Like anything? Isn't it? The joy of running a business is you keep every title until someone else wants it. And in 20 years, no one's wants to take that one from me yet.

Mike: Yeah, I must admit, last week, I found out how many employees it took to change a light bulb. And the answer was only one they asked me and then I do the light bulb changing. So I totally understand.

Tim: It's like the classic computer science joke, isn't it? How many? How many software engineers to take change a light bulb? Not it's a hardware problem. They don't, they don't they don't get any better. I'm afraid.

Mike: I was gonna say I think you now qualify as having the best software engineer joke on the podcast. So congratulations for that. I'm, I'm interested. I mean, you mentioned having to do a lot of CANDDi but you're actually also involved in a couple of other companies. Can you tell us a bit about that as well?

Tim: Yeah, all sorts of CANDDi now is is 13 years old. And we have we've always prided ourselves as kind of being like the innovators in the space so we're 20 strong person business 50 Universal we're developers. So very very thin on the ground for sales marketing business, very much innovation development building things.

And first business I've got involved first spin out business and all of them all of these are spin out businesses from CANDDi but two and a half years ago, I met a chap called Adam Herbert who was very experienced within the data industry we started a business together called go live data go is the it's the UK is best source of b2b marketing lists marketing data we start from UK companies house and then find the online profiles and all the all the thermographic data around the around the organisation so so that's that's that's go and then I also started a business called comply and comply is very similar to go but with a financial crimes lash and anti money laundering hat on so comply has been very very busy over the last four and a half months while a number of our larger customers have started to ask us Can you guarantee there's no Russians involved in our customer base so yes, life is exciting with with those two strands but but no cat candies always been my baby so And fortunately, fortunately should be some fun things to talk about the CANDDi as well.

And everything around data which I think is really interesting

it's all it's all around data that's been it's been my passion for say for 20 odd years now has been data and then specifically people and marketing data.

Mike: Cool. So CANDDi is spelt ca n DD I guess the the most important questions is why CANDDi is it a lot of sweets?

Tim: We get all things really in fact, we have a we have a number of American customers and they struggle with the word CANDDi we often get is that see and die it's actually got a funny little story really. So just before starting CANDDi I've had, as I mentioned, I've been been running businesses 20 years, I had a couple of businesses that went well. I had a couple of businesses that didn't go so well.

Just before starting CANDDi, I was consulting for a actually a digital agency in Manchester as was at the time, which is a company called and digital and, and started pitching to and basically looking at the stuff they were doing and they had an awful lot of trying to pull together different data sets very manually, and so started pitching to them around. I reckon if we did a bit of less than a bit of this and a bit of this, we could build a product out of this. And they went Tim That sounds amazing. We'd love to be your first investors. I wasn't even looking for investors but sounds amazing. They said there's one criteria though. The company name has to include the words and digital. It's just kind of one of the things they did.

So the real name of a company is campaign and digital intelligence limited. But that's such a mouthful, but we then went okay, what can we really call it? But But do you know what? I love the name CANDDi, I wouldn't change it for the world. But if I had to do it again, I wouldn't call it CANDDi. The number of iterations of the name I own ca n C A N N ca n d i. serwotka. It's like an SEO nightmare trying to trying to get the word. The word CANDDi.

Mike: Okay, so a memorable but rather hard to spell name? By the sounds of it. So I mean, can you tell us what problem CANDDi solves.

Tim: So the core of CANDDi, we want to be putting a name and a face against an otherwise anonymous website visitor. So when I first started, and actually when we demoed the software to people, we start with this slide that's got this big black hole in the middle, and all kinds of different marketing channels around the edge. So be it SEO bit PPC, the email marketing vs. Social. But the fact of the matter is, there's a billion different ways to get people to come onto your website, which is great. And within reason, they all work. And you then have traditional, I call them traditional, but traditional tools such as Google Analytics, which can give you like the aggregate numbers.

So yesterday, you had 100 visitors onto your website, 20 of them came from SEO, and 30 of them came from an email campaign you run. And you know what, that's for a lot of art for a lot of our b2b customers. That's not a bad kind of scenario. The problem is, and this is a bit and this is a bit misses of if you like the hypothesis statement that started the business, but the problem is, you can see what's getting people to the website. But then the thing we hear time and time again, they land on the website, it's like this black hole, you know, people are there. But it's like having a shop window and just you can see people walking by. But unless you can reach out unless you can engage with them unless you ultimately unless you know who they are. It's very, very little you can do from a sales perspective, you just have to hope and pray they fill in a form on the website.

And in many instances for b2b, especially especially growing and sales focused b2b businesses, they want to be a bit more proactive, but just wait and hope somebody comes and fills the form. And so so what we do, we integrate him with all of our digital marketing channels via SEO via email marketing, we integrate him with them, we use those to pick up signals, and then either identify the company, or potentially identify danger, the actual named individual, and be able to say, it's not just a random visitor, this is Mike Maynard, from Napier, he's a really high prospect.

Mike: That's fascinating. So I mean, particularly, what you're trying to do is catch people between arriving at the website and filling in the form, which is where a lot of people disappear. So that that makes a lot of sense.

Tim: There's two bits really so.

So there's one bit which is, and if you look through the whole aid or awareness, model, awareness, interest decision action, crikey, I nearly forgot it. So one piece, one piece, which is a piece you just alluded to there, Mike is the very top of the funnel, capturing people went between arriving on the website and filling the form, when they're still in that kind of role.

Do I know who you are? Am I interested enough. And we in that gives that gives, that gives our customers that gives our people use our software, the opportunity to try and get involved with people who might otherwise disappear.

The second piece though, which is actually equally as valuable, often we'll find that that prospects will come to the website, they'll fill in a form to download a lead magnet or to get a piece of content, etc. But they're not yet ready to buy. They've expressed interest, but they're not ready for the decision or the action phase. And so so then what happens is they'll then come back to a website or number and actually sorry, just to jump in, but but if if you jump down their throat too fast when they're just at the interest phase, you ended up turning them off rather than turning them on because well I'm not I'm not ready yet. Just give me a break.

So so the second bit were canned is really useless because we're tracking computers because we're watching the activity that people do on the website. We can say look, this person, they filled in a form, but probably not quite ready for a really a really full on conversation. Drop them an email back, don't bother making a phone call to them yet. What then happens is they come And back to your website a month, a week, six months, a year later, they don't necessarily fill in a form again. But CANDDi goes, that's interesting. I've seen this person, I've seen this computer. And so we can then give this much richer picture for the people who've already filled in forms and give you an indication of when the right time to engage might be. So kind of hits both sides, both the very top of the funnel, but also the people who are getting hotter starting to get closer towards being able to make that decision and take action.

Mike: That's interesting. So that that towards the bottom of the funnel, I think you're acting quite like a marketing automation platform might do in terms of tracking people, and understanding where they're visiting and potentially, you know, driving actions from that. Would that be right?

Tim: Yes, so, so can the marketing automation is always been an interesting space for us. And it's not something we have yet. I use that carefully. But it's not something we've yet wandered into, we integrate with. So when we when we look at when we look at the whole space of people in a similar position to CANDDi bars, there are a number of organisations a number of competitors who do company level IP tracking, we can talk about that in the future. But that's, that's really about identifying the company based on the IP address that someone's coming from.

There's also a number of organisations which which you mentioned the HubSpot bit eloquent bit my calf, so the the full service marketing automation plays, who do everything for you. And one of the things we've always said they are great pieces technology, if you're going to put everything into their stack. It's interesting, but a number of our larger customers, one of the things they get out of CANDDi, they use marketing automation platforms, for the automation, as it says, but they they actually what you discover is they use multiple different platforms. And each platform tracks and identifies its people. But they don't have that holistic view goes okay. And especially when people are using third parties as well. So they might use a third party to do their data send. And then they use their own platform to do their nurturing. And then the salespeople send their own emails and, and they end up with all these little pots of data. One of the pieces can do those as pull all of that together to give this slightly more holistic, almost a customer data platform or CDP. So yeah, marketing automation is a really unlock much automation has been a very interestingly growth space over the last 13 years, as a CANDDi, we've we've kind of cut this interesting place that goes on one hand, providing the providing a lightweight marketing type platform, and the other hand providing stdp and provide the actual the data the pulling it all together for for the larger organisations.

Mike: That's interesting. I mean, the other thing as well is when I use CANDDi, and just so people know, we actually are a CANDDi customer at Napier. So we are CANDDi users. When I use it, it feels much more sales focused than any kind of marketing automation platform. I know clients when they've tried to get sales teams to use the marketing automation platforms. It's it's fraught with difficulty. It's not what sales teams like it's hard enough to get them to use the CRM. So I mean, is that another benefit that it's a more sales friendly presenting activity?

Tim: You took You took the words right out of my mouth? We you're absolutely right. Once one time we used to we used to describe it the keys in the name, isn't it? It's marketing automation. And with a joke, you almost don't want your sales team to be going into it because you want them focused on what do I need to do today. And then one of the pieces we have in CANDDi is very focused lists off here are people that were on your website yesterday, here are people are taking action today. So from a sales side, it's very great. I need to tick these boxes versus let me go and wander around and have a look at all of the all of the reasons why not to be making not not to be making sales or not to be making the contact or calls. Yes, CANDDi came from a very sales focused background rather than rather than this more generic marketing piece.

Mike: Definitely, no, I think it's really helpful to sales teams. I want to step back, you briefly mentioned the identification of anonymous visitors. So working out which company people are from, can you explain a little bit more about what CANDDi does to work out which company people are from?

Tim: Yeah, absolutely. So let's start by talking about how the industry does it and then then I'll talk about some of the additional pieces which CANDDi does. So the core the core of company identification has always been IP tracking and using IP addresses. So as I'm as I'm sure majority of your listeners know, Mike, when anytime you connect to the internet, your computer gets given an IP address and that's how Have a server knows how to communicate with your computer and your computer to communicate the server. And servers or technology like CANDDi can capture these IP addresses and go, Okay, here's an IP address 81 point 27.1 to four point 17, etc, etc, etc.

Now every every IP address is registered to an organisation. Most IP addresses are registered to internet service providers, so Virgin Media, British Telecom, etc. But for medium and larger businesses, they generally have their own, what would be called a static IP address. So this would be an IP address registered in the name of that company. And if a visitor comes from behind that company's IP address, you can say somebody from Napier was on your website yesterday. And that can be useful. There's a number of problems with just relying on IP addresses. So one problem is that when when all you have is IP addresses, you've got no way to know whether it was one person coming 10 times, or 10 people coming once. If you if you imagine an office full of people, you also don't know who it was that was coming from from behind the IP address. Sometimes Sometimes that can be okay. So with as an organisation, you're very, very focused in who you who you market to who you sell to, you can go general, on balance of probability, the only person who's going to be coming on our website is going to be the CFO, or is going to be the facilities manager, etc. But actually, it might just as well be, but it was one of them, it was one of their managers, or even it was the office intern who was tasked with doing the research.

The second the second problem, if you like with with IPS is, and again, go back to when CANDDi started 13 years ago, everybody browse the internet or predominantly browse the internet from behind their work desktop computer. These days, I don't know about you and me but it's the iPad, it's the phone, it's the coffee shop, it's the whilst whilst commuting to and from London, etc, etc, etc. Those are the times I'm more often do my awareness interest. And in those instances, very rarely will someone show up as coming from behind a static IP address. Generally, they'll be on a on a mobile connection or on a home broadband. So that's the IP tracking piece. Now we do a few bits deeper than that in CANDDi. So CANDDi, CANDDi uses cookies to track rather than IPs. So we drop the first we can talk about cookies, I'm sure privacy will come up in a second, but we drop a first party cookie on the device. So that means we can track when that computer comes back to that specific website. We don't follow you around the internet, we only track you on that single single company's properties. But because we do this, we can pick up when a visitor comes from behind multiple IPs. So if you use the computer in work, at home, on the train, on the coffee shop, we would see that as the same computer across multiple different IP addresses. And then we can plug into other types of data to go, who's this person likely to be?

Mike: So what you're doing is you're you're almost looking to see when this cookie gets associated with the company. And then you know, that person obviously works for that company because they're behind the firewall.

Tim: Yes, number one is we look for when that cookie gets associated with the company. And then number two, if we're really lucky when that cookie gets associated with a named individual. So if Eva fill a form and click an email, connect through LinkedIn, in that instance, we go up. And now it's not just about the company, it's about the actual person after company.

Mike: Perfect. Okay, so how do people use this data? I'm interested, particularly in the anonymous data, you refer to the fact of there could be a challenge and knowing who from the company visited the site? You know, do you find people who have value, you know, suddenly seeing a particular customer increase activity? Or how else do people use this data?

Tim: So we spoke earlier about the difference between or some of the differences between sales and marketing. And we very definitely have two different types of users. So for the Sales User, even the company level data can be useful. We've built over over the last period of time, we've built a number of plugins to try to help identify otherwise anonymous people. So we have we have the ability to see who the key employees at the company are. So you see somebody from Napier communications, we go okay, that's kind of intro and then we got kind of interesting here of a key people that work at that organisation.

So you can go we have Have a plugin for Outlook and a plug in for Gmail. So if you actually know somebody's applicant or know people at the company, you can send them a one to one individually email. And obviously, as I'm sure you know, one to one emails have far higher open rates far higher click through far higher engagement, we have a plug in for LinkedIn so often are so often our Sales Users that they'll go okay, somebody from this company, let's go on to LinkedIn, let's see who's at that company? Who am I already connected to? Who could I connect with, make the connections? And then when people are when their connections start to engage, we can then identify them on the website. That's kind of a sales side. With the marketing side, it's much more around, is our message going out to the right kind of people? If we're building a message aimed at UK businesses? Do we tend to see UK businesses coming onto the site? Or actually, is it American businesses or Canadian businesses or, or so we've our marketing teams, we give them that bit more of a generic, but actually drilled down to the company in the thermographic details. I don't know you're aiming for large businesses, but it seems most of the stuffs being read by smaller businesses, okay, maybe allows you to rethink where rethink the type of content and rethink the information you're putting out there.

Mike: That's really interesting. And presumably, if, if I'm running an Account Based Marketing Campaign, I can actually measure the impact on traffic from the accounts I'm targeting, in CANDDi to see to see the move.

Tim: Do you know what Account Based Marketing campaigns marketing has probably been one of the biggest buzzwords over the last few years?

Mike: It's certainly one of our biggest certainly our fastest growing service, actually, it's definitely working. And I think one of the things we found is, of course, when you start an Account Based Marketing Campaign, you don't necessarily run it as a lead gen campaign. And so it's quite hard to get those results. And certainly seeing the data in CANDDi definitely helps.

Tim: It often gives that tangible are slightly more tangible. We know we're doing the right thing, whilst it might take a number of months to actually see the the lead numbers actually tick through. So yes,

Mike: Definitely. So I mean, Kenny is obviously pulling in a lot of data, both personal and also firmographic. You mentioned before, I mean, there's always the GDPR question, what's the privacy implications on what you do? What are marketers need to be aware of?

Tim: You know, what is? The $64,000 question, isn't it about privacy these days, and it's also changing and evolving so much both. It's both a legal perspective, but also a technical perspective, and everything that's going on under the covers, so, so few pieces, and let's let's go through and try and get some these time. But please feel free to ask about any of the any bits that go through. So piece number one, obviously, is the GDPR. Ankle, so let's just talk about that.

So CANDDi only captures data from people coming on to our customers sites, but that's where we build our datasets from. So we rely on the fact that our customers have a legal basis for holding that data. And CANDDi, simply a data processor of the data our customers control.

What I mean, say there's, we don't own any of the data from your site. It's your data, you get to choose or you get to make requests as to what you want to do with that. Now, for most of our customers, they rely on legitimate interests as their as their legal basis. And in a b2b world, that makes a lot of sense, I would not use CANDDi, I would not use technology like CANDDi in any in any form of high risk data or very, very, very, very personal data. So if you're doing anything with children, or if you're doing anything with medical records, this wouldn't be the right type of tool to be using. But if you're a b2b business, if you're if you're selling to other other b2b companies, or other other b2b organisations, then the legitimate interests, the ability to say, look, we saw someone came onto our website, they are a genuine prospect for us. That's why we're tracking them. That's why we're that's why we're doing this. The second side, which which I touched on the beginning, is about cookies, and about first party but versus third party. So this is this is whereas GDPR was the buzzword of of 2018 2019. That buzz word of 2020 2223. Almost certainly is going to be the fact that if you read all the articles, cookies are dying, they're going away. No one's ever going to accept cookies anymore, etc, etc, etc. And the truth of matter is, in the same way that GDPR made us think carefully about what we were doing with marketing data. But it didn't stop marketing. Unit didn't destroy the industry and all of the above, the same is going to be true with with the first party versus third party cookies.

So third party cookies effectively are cookies that follow you around the internet. This is where you go and look at a dishwasher. And then you go and read a news article and it says buy this dishwasher. Now that's driven off of third party cookie, first party cookies, or just a bite, they only collect data on that one website on that one company's on that one company's property. So that much more about, and we've said this for years, and candidates are technology. And the best way to use this technology is to help. We help companies build relationships with people and organisations who want to have relationships with them. If if you think about it from sales perspective, at the end of the day, even if I come onto your website, if I don't want to have a relationship with your business, it's pointless trying to force me to because nobody wins. Or what happens is you waste marketing money, you waste sales time. Whereas if it's just that I do, but I just don't quite know how to get started. Well, that's a great prospect for you. I feel like I'm getting it does any of this make sense? Certainly, I can talk about privacy till the cows come home. So

Mike: I think it's very important that the differential you made about first party and third party cookies, and that's quite technical. But you know, it really is at the heart of the new regulations are impacting third party.

Tim: Correct. We in fact, actually going back a number of years, we coined a we coined that Scripture, we call it the pub landlord conversation, if you've got a couple of minutes, but so the public landlord conversation says, and by the way, candies were based in Manchester, we're in the centre of it, we're in fact, within the Northern Quarter, if anyone knows those Manchester well, but so for the last five years, I've been going on a Friday night finish work, obviously, COVID notwithstanding both, so I would go to the same pub on a Friday night with a team in CANDDi, and we'd sit down, we'd have a beer, just let off steam at the end of the for long week. And, and obviously over time, I'd start to build a relationship with the pub landlord. And, and so I'd go in there once in one day. And he goes, and it must have been a really bad week, because you could read on my face as a bad place. And he says, Timmy says some, you look like you've had a tough week, why don't you sit down, there's a pint of Guinness, he knows I drink Guinness, there's a pint of Guinness, just it's on the house, have a few minutes, just get get stress off. And then when you're ready, we'll have a proper conversation. And I went, you know what, that's really, really good. But the landlord recognised who I was he new or like drinking Guinness, he saw us in a bad mood. That's a great relationship, and the fact that I want to have a relationship with him. So I go, brilliant, that's great customer service. That's a good analogy, if you like have a first party tracking, where we want to have a relationship.

Now the counter to that is maybe I jump on a train to London and I walk into work into a bar in the middle of Shoreditch. And the landlord goes, You're Tim Langley, I've seen you on the internet. I'm going to run a mile party. Obviously, everybody has their own definitions of what they feel comfortable sharing and what they view as, as personal and private. And except for but that to me is the distinction between the two, I get to choose and I get to I get to choose who I want to have a relationship with. And on the assumption they want to have a relationship with me. We have a beautiful, beautiful situation. The one where they pull together data, but I'm not necessarily aware of. That's uncomfortable. That's not something that's not something that's good for me as an individual. It's not something that's good for a business either.

Mike: I love that explanation. That's That's fantastic, really clear differentiation there. And absolutely, I think everyone would run a mile to finally have a stalker, it's, it's scary.

Tim: It's a very English analogy, though it doesn't translate so well across the pond.

Mike: So, I mean, I'm mindful of the time here. I mean, just looking at installing can do it. Obviously, there's quite a lot is it does that mean it's complicated to instal and manage?

Tim: It's super well. It's super simple to instal and manage. It's literally put one line of code on your website, we take care of everything else, where, where it can be more complex, maybe complex as the wrong word. But where it can be more more challenging is sometimes it involves sales teams and sales people starting to change their behaviours and think a bit more about how they actually want to engage and how they actually have a go about contacting for days. I think it's fair to say the days of cold calling, picking up the phone and just go Hey Mike, you want to speak You now are probably passed, it's definitely a much more subtle approach. And so we, when we start working with clients, we have a very strong customer success team. And they work very closely with people trialling CANDDi, and very closely with our customers to help them think about how to best use this within their business. So technically, it's simple, but, but sometimes, sometimes we dive a lot deeper with customers to really help them get the best out of it.

Mike: That's really interesting.

Tim: So I mean, presumably people, they look at the data, and they might go back and see if somebody already care about somebody or you know, suddenly, it's an instant, this is perfect, I can understand, oh, when they look at these products, I didn't know this customer is interested these products, that that must be a great feeling. But sometimes it requires a bit more time and effort to dig deep to find that the information that matters.

And sometimes it requires a bit of, as you said, then a bit more lateral thinking. So we've had times we've had times when we've had people say, Well, I know these people already, why do I need to know they're on our website. And actually, they'll then spread it out to the wider team. And maybe it's the account manager who goes, you might already know those people, Mr. salesperson, but my goodness, I really want to know, another one. Another one we find is sometimes we'll see people go. And they'll see customers looking at their terms and conditions or their contract terms. And you go, Whoa, that's a red flag, you might want to know about that. If your best customer is looking at terms and conditions, that's a good indication, it might be time to start touching base and say, Hi, how are you again? So yes, that's kind of the wider picture thinking. But when people are thinking very linearly, sometimes they don't always doesn't always jump out as immediate benefits.

Mike: No, absolutely. I mean, we have, you know, in marketing, running a marketing agency, if people look at the client's page, or they look at the People page, or they look at both, it's a real indication that they're interested. So I totally understand that.

Tim: Exactly. Yeah. So if somebody wanted to try CANDDi, I mean, it's a line of code on the website. That sounds simple.

Mike: But is it easy to get a trial? How do you how do you, you know, let people test the product?

Tim: Yeah, so we, as with many SAS businesses, we are a free trial first business Or just go to WWE did we And there's plenty of ways to to register from there. When we work with people, we do a 30 day free trial to get started. And during that free trial, our customer success team are regularly reaching out touching base, just trying to make sure that we can give you the best possible experience of software to hand. So very, very, very simple, very, very easy to get started. We We love having new people on board.

Mike: Brilliant, so So just go to CANDDi ca n, or one of the other versions you've got. And and try it out. That's a great message. I mean, it's been really great talking to you, if people are, are interested in finding out more or maybe have a question, is there a way they can get ahold of you on the internet?

Tim: There's 100 ways to get ahold of me on the internet. But so or reach out to me, Tim Langley on LinkedIn. I, in fact, it is it's the joy of growing, building a growing businesses is there are more and more people in the team to work to take over stuff. But actually, I really enjoy when people reach out and ask me questions. And it's sometimes it's just really nice to actually touch base and understand the kinds of things people are actually interested in asking about. So we're more than happy to answer any questions.

Mike: Perfect. And I mean, that's brilliant. You know, if people are interested in a software product, they've got the email address to the CEO. That's, that's a pretty compelling.

Tim: I told you, we were kind of different in that space, but

Mike: awesome. Well, I really appreciate this. It's been such a good conversation not just about CANDDi, but about cookies, about privacy, about all sorts of things. Thank you so much for being on the podcast him.

Tim: Thanks very much for having me, Mike.

Mike: Thanks very much. Thanks so much for listening to marketing b2b Tech. We hope you enjoyed the episode. And if you did, please make sure you subscribe on iTunes, or on your favourite podcast application. If you'd like to know more, please visit our website at Napier b2b dot com or contact me directly on LinkedIn.

Entries Now Open for Elektra Awards 2022

Entries are now open for the Elektra Awards 2022, which will be taking place on Wednesday 30th November at the Grosvenor House, Park Lane, London.

With 17 awards up for grabs, this year marks the 20th year anniversary of the Elektra Awards, which welcomes entries from manufacturers, distributors, designers, individuals, research groups and start-ups from across all areas of the electronics industry.

Entries close on Thursday 14th July, with the shortlist due to be announced in October 2022.

With the Elektras taking place virtually in 2022 and as a hybrid event in 2021, it's great to see the awards ceremony return fully as a face to face event, and for the industry to come together once again to celebrate its achievements.

For more information on the categories, and how to enter, please click here. 


Electronic Specifier Looking For Research Project Participants

Tess Weller, Marketing Director at Electronic Specifier, is looking for individuals involved in the supplier selection process for electronics components to take part in a research project as part of Tess's International Marketing MSc at King's College.

Taking place throughout May and June, the purpose of the research is to explore how the organisational purchase decisions of supplier selection have been impacted in the last few years due to the lack of trade fairs and the development of communication technologies. The research will also aim to provide a wider insight into any critical changes in the electronics industry.

Participants will be required to conduct a series of interviews throughout May and June, either in-person or virtually. Questions will focus on topics such as how experiences have changed with regard to supplier selection, and whether they were affected by problems with the supply chain.

For more information on how to take part in the project please click here, or contact Tess at or via LinkedIn. 

AspenCore Optimizes

AspenCore recently launched some changes to optimize their publication site 

Improvements included adding multi-size functionality, a new mobile billboard ad size, with more space for text and call to action buttons, as well as moving the leaderboard ad above the fold for high viewability.

The restructuring of the site has already achieved significant results in the first month of being live, with a 20x increase in CTR on desktop, and mobile ad size; and for in-network viewability, Aspencore has seen, on average, an increase of 30%.

With plans to add more 'high impact' ad units for more site sponsorship opportunities, it's clear to see that AspenCore is taking the performance of their sites seriously, and looking for ways to improve results for advertisers, as well as optimize the site for visitors.

Aspencore will also be exhibiting at PCIM Europe 2022, at Hall 6, booth 400, with sales, editorial and a full video team on-site.

A Napier Podcast: Interview with Sarah Bond - Lucky Orange

In this podcast episode, we interview Sarah Bond, Vice President of Marketing at Lucky Orange, a website conversion optimization tool.

Sarah shares her career journey on how she got into marketing, and how Lucky Orange helps B2B marketers understand website visitor behaviour. She explains the different tools available such as heat maps, session recordings, and live chat; and how these tools help understand visitors' behaviours in aggregate but also at an individual user level.

Listen to the podcast now via the links below:

Transcript: Interview with Sarah Bond - Lucky Orange

Speakers: Mike Maynard, Sarah Bond

Mike: Thanks for listening to marketing b2b Tech, the podcast from Napier, where you can find out what really works in b2b marketing today. Welcome to the latest episode of marketing b2b technology, the podcast from Napier. Today I'm joined by Sarah bond. Sarah is the Vice President of Marketing at Lucky Orange. Welcome to the podcast, Sarah.

Sarah: Thanks, Mike. Excited to be here with you today.

Mike: It's great to have you here. So, I mean, the way we normally start is asking a little bit about career history. So can you tell us a little bit about your career and how you've ended up at Lucky Orange?

Sarah: Absolutely. So I actually have a little bit of a secret. Although I'm vice president of marketing. Now, I'm actually not a marketer, by background or education. My career has led me into marketing. But I actually got my start in graduated from college with a degree in public relations and advertising. And as soon as I graduated from college, I, my first job was serving as a leadership consultant. And from there, I jumped into actually doing journalism, and was writing for a weekly newspaper for a while, you know, I love writing, it's one of my passion areas. So I did that. And then after I got done doing writing, I said, you know, I really, really want to get into public relations. And so my next job was doing agency side public relations, and did that for a while and then moved over into the corporate world, doing PR for a fortune 500 healthcare technology company. And it was while I was doing PR that my manager at the time came to me with an interesting opportunity to move over to the marketing side doing digital marketing. And it was real leap of faith. For me, I think at the time, I knew what HTML stood for. But I had no idea what online marketing was what paid search was, I didn't know anything about websites other than publishing news releases to websites, and my role is PR. But I kind of made that leap of faith. And I learned that I really enjoyed the digital marketing side of things. And from there, just kind of use that as a jumping off point to do a variety of different marketing and comms tasks and have led internal communications teams, I've led brand strategy and brand identity, as well as in house creative services team. So graphic designers, video production, and all sorts of different marketing, ranging from Product Marketing focused on go to marketing strategies, and just really the gamut of anything and everything marketing, to even doing some civic engagement strategies. And all of that kind of broad marketing career led me to Lucky Orange a great opportunity to get in with a smaller company than where I was at when I left the company that I had previously been at. It was about 22,000 people. And so I made the jump to a company of less than 20 people and absolutely love it, and couldn't be happier than where I'm at, at Lucky Orange where I get to do a little bit of anything and everything marketing and communications related.

Mike: That's, that's great. That sounds like a fascinating career, and probably not something you had like this 1020 year career plan. It sounds like it was very dynamic.

Sarah: It definitely was, it was one of those, say yes to the opportunity when it arises, type of strategies. And if you had asked me when I first got started my career, I would have told you, I'm going to be doing public relations for my whole career and would continue on with that. But really, when the different opportunities presented themselves, I jumped at it because I love learning new skills and new tasks. And it is what really keeps me energised and excited about my career and being able to dive in and get my hands dirty and marketing. I just really I love that opportunity and have been fortunate to have a career that's given me a lot of opportunities to continue to grow and stretch my skills.

Mike; Oh, that. That's awesome. That sounds great. Right? So before we dive into the company and what you do, I've got to ask what you must get asked all the time. Why the name Lucky Orange.

Sarah: It's an interesting name, isn't it? It's definitely not one that you can infer what we do just based on the name. But that's a little bit by design. When our founders were coming up with the name for the company. They wanted something that was interesting and differentiated in the market space and that would allow them to grab people's attention and they really landed on Lucky Orange and we've kind of embraced it from there and incorporate it in everything that we do.

Mike: That's great. So I mean, it's certainly memorable. I guess that you know, the things that have asked that is, so you're Lucky Orange, I've got no idea from the name, what you do, can you tell us what you do?

Sarah: Absolutely, really at the core of what we do is we help people who have a website, understand what people are doing on their site, so that they can improve their conversions on that site, whether it's an E commerce site that's looking to grow sales, or a b2b site that's looking to generate more leads. And we offer a suite of tools that help people understand website visitor behaviour. So from heat maps and session recordings that let you see the most popular parts of your site to drilling down into what a very individual user is doing to surveys and live chat that allow you to engage directly with a person who's on your site to ask them firsthand what they're struggling with, or what they're interested in, to really get that into in the understanding of the customer so that when you understand them better, you can create better experiences, you know, if you're a user experience designer using Lucky Orange tools, you can not only create a really beautiful website experience, but one that's also highly functional. And that converts to someone who's a solo entrepreneur who's trying to understand why they're getting all this traffic, but why it's not converting and turning into sales or leads.

Mike: Right sounds like there's a lot of things there. So I mean, you're packaging different tools up, I mean, maybe we can just go and explore some of those products kind of unpack the the tools first. So I think the first thing you talked about was understanding recording user sessions. So, you know, this is a technology where you're watching what people do on the website. I mean, can you give me some examples of what marketers might do with that data? How they might use it?

Sarah: Sure. And like you said, Mike, it, it is for those who are unfamiliar with what a session recording does, it really is like watching a playback of what someone did on your website. So with a session recording, you can see the pages that they navigated to, you can see where they clicked on those pages, where they scroll down a page, maybe where they hesitated where they move their mouse. So it really is a helpful tool to let you see what they're doing. And, you know, we as a marketing team, at Lucky Orange, use our own tools on our website to understand what people are doing. And there are several different ways you as a marketer might use them. Let's say you just launched a paid advertising campaign, and you want to see what people from that campaign are doing? Well, you can filter by source, you can filter by any UTM parameter. And you can see, okay, my people coming on my Google PPC ads that are coming to my site from those ads, I want to watch and see if they're going through my page and scrolling through my page. And one of the things that we found very helpful, particularly when we have landing pages created for a specific campaign is to see just how much of the content people are consuming. And one of the things that we found after we launched our new website is that we have a very large video block on some of our pages, and that some people just scroll right past that.

So we've used that information to try and recreate the hierarchy of information to put other information that we think is more compelling on those landing pages to the top so that we can optimise that page to increase the odds that people will hit that call to action. So it can be very helpful in that regard as a marketer to do that. And also, if you're very content heavy site in our content marketing team likes to use our session recordings to see just how far down the page somebody's reading into their content. You know, there's, you can look at Google Analytics and see time on page, but you don't know if they just opened up that browser and they're sitting there. But with a session recording, you can actually see, okay, someone is actively reading my content and making it all the way down to the bottom of the page. And there's another tool that when we we switch to talk about heat maps, that can be really helpful from that perspective, too. But it's really great to let you see kind of the the guts behind what you might surface up in Google Analytics of highly traffic pages, high time on site, but what are they really doing when they're on that page? That's what a session recording can help you understand?

Mike: And with those session recordings, you're effectively looking at individual users. Is that right? That's right. Yep. So you're playing through individual users now. You just mentioned heatmap. So explain that. To me, that sounds like what you're doing is aggregating those individual users to try and give an indication of what's interesting. Is that is that as a good understanding of what it does,

Sarah: yeah, we should have you on the marketing team. Yeah, I mean, you explained it very well. A where session recording allows you to see what an individual person on your site is doing. A heatmap gives you the aggregate view of what people are doing on your site. So it lets you get a feel for those areas of your site that are getting a lot of engagement, or conversely, no engagement, which can be really, really helpful. Because in my past life as a digital marketer, for a very big company working on website redesigns, you kind of get into this design by committee process where every single line of business is going to tell you they need to be in the top navigation of the website, because they are the most important thing. And they are absolutely what's drawing people into your site, because everyone's looking for their content. Well, a heat map can actually prove or disprove some of those internal stakeholders, because it can show you well actually, on our main navigation, we get the most clicks on these lines of business, or these subjects or these topics. And we're not getting a lot of clicks here. So as a marketer, you can use that to refine what you're actually showing, and hopefully get people to the content that's most meaningful to them, so that they stay longer on their site. And there are some other ways that you can use heat maps to there's a version of a heat map that's called a scroll heat map, that instead of showing you chunks of the site, you know, clip clickable elements where people might be clicking on this will show you how far down the page a person, the majority of people scrolled.

And on a scroll heatmap, you have what's called the effective fold, which, you know, if you're thinking of it in terms like a newspaper, it's that point where 50% of the people are falling off. So it's effectively where the fold is that on your website. And when you're thinking about something like blog content, or even a product page, where you're maybe listing out a lot of features, a scroll heatmap will show you how far down the page most people are making it. So if people are stopping reading before they're getting to your calls to action, or if you're looking at it as a content marketer and saying, Man, I put all this time and energy and hours of work into creating these long form blog posts, but nobody's reading them. What a gift is that to be able to go back and say, I don't need to waste my time on these long posts anymore. Maybe I can write shorter, concise content that gets people there quickly and gets consumed all the way through. So they're really great analytics tools for marketers to be able to have to understand visitor behaviour on your site in aggregate, but also at the individual user level when you want to dive in deeper.

Mike: Awesome. I mean, in terms of making these recordings, so you're not watching people's eyes? Are you tracking the mouse? How do you understand what people are focusing on?

Sarah: Right? So a heat map is capturing where people, there are several different types. So it clicks heat map will capture where a user is clicking, so wherever they click their mouse, and you can see some interesting behaviour from that if you dive in and start studying heat maps, because, of course, you expect to see people clicking on things that are clickable, but a lot of people will also click as they move down the screen where you might see clicks in random areas. Or you might uncover issues on your site where people are clicking things that they think aren't that should be clickable that actually aren't. So that's something great that you can pass on to your user experience or development teams. But there are also moves heat maps that allow you to see where someone moves their mouse across the screen. So it's not capturing the click, but it's actually following that mouse movement. And there are some common things that you'll see user experience designers are familiar with an F shaped pattern, when it comes to consuming content on a website. And you'll see a lot of users will move their mouse as they read that content. And so if you're trying to kind of break out of some of those I hate here, people consuming this an F shaped patterns, you can study one of those mouse movement heat maps to really understand that. So that's, that's really what we're tracking is the movement of the mouse across the page. And you know, some things that we also capture. Lucky Orange allows you to see events within the system that happen like when someone highlights text will trigger an event that shows you someone as actually paying really close attention to this text. They found it very interesting. You know, I I like to think of it kind of how if you read on a Kindle, where when you have those popular areas that people read that kind of shows up in your Kindle text is underlined. It's sort of like that, where you can see people found this text really interesting enough so that they highlighted it. So we do capture things like that. And also things like rage clicks when someone clicks on an element quickly and repeatedly. We surface that up so that you can quickly find some of these pain points that people are experiencing on your site without having to sit and watch through a lot of recordings individually.

Mike: As fascinating. I'm interested because a couple of years ago this recording of user sessions got a quite a lot of bad publicity but To clean I think Europe around confidentiality, privacy and GDPR. I mean, what's the situation now? What do you do to ensure privacy?

Sarah: Absolutely. And I think that's a great and very important question. And it's one we take very seriously because our tools are designed to help people who have websites create better experiences on behalf of the user. And that's really our goal. And with the user, the end user in mind, whether it's a b2b customer, or it's an E commerce shopper, which is the reason why we are GDPR and CCPA compliant. But we also take steps to ensure that we're really focused on the behaviour on the site and not the information that's being entered into the site. So we automatically block the recording of any keystrokes. So when a visitor to a website is typing information and on a site, you won't actually be able to see in that recording, if they're typing in their username or their password, instead, you just see Asterix reflected in the recording, because we really do value that privacy of the person visiting the website, we also have tools where we allow our customers to surface up to their website visitors, here's the information that we're recording on you, here's how to manage that. And here's how you can opt out of that if you don't want that information recorded. Because it really should be a diagnostics and an understanding tool. It's not about gaining the visitors information. So we really do take that seriously. And we also offer a layer of protection above that where people who are managing their websites can say, I don't want this information to come through. So I want to scramble the text. So instead of saying, You seeing on our website recording where it says click here, you can actually choose to have that text randomly scrambled so that you can still do all of the diagnostics, things that you would be able to do. But you're not capturing that in a recording, which financial institutions, for example, find very helpful because they may have someone who's coming in and helping audit the site or do some troubleshooting. And they don't necessarily want the person watching the recording to see that information. So they can use tech scrambling features so that you can still understand if there's an issue on a site where maybe there was a button error, you can still see that without seeing the actual information. And you can designate parts of the site as sensitive data collection. So if it's something that wouldn't normally be flagged, you can go above and beyond by designating CSS classes as sensitive and we won't capture that information.

Mike: That's really cool to know that you've got that protection. I think, particularly for users, it's important to know that protective protection exists for sure. So I'd like to move on and talk about some of the other features in Lucky Orange. We've talked about, you know, recording user sessions. And we've talked about heat maps, you know, to quite technical web design things. You know, the next thing I've seen on your website is live chat, which is just completely different. So explain how that fits into a, you know, a package of products. That includes a very technical products. Why Why did you go to live chat?

Sarah: Absolutely. So I think a lot of people do look at that, especially when they compare Lucky Orange to our competitors who don't have live chat and you say, why is live chat tucked in there? Well, at the end of the day, when our founders created Lucky Orange, what they were really trying to do is create software that allowed them to better understand people who are coming to their website, and recordings and heat maps and form analytics are great tools to allow you to retro actively go in and study that. But when you couple our Live View tool, which lets you see what people are doing on your site, right now, with something like live chat, you have the opportunity to see people who are struggling on your site and reach out to them and say, Hey, how can I help you? Is there something you're looking for. Or if you see a technical issue happen when you're using that live view to cobrowse with a customer, you can go in and chat with them and resolve it so that you're not only trying to optimise for conversions, but you're really saving the sale are saving the lead before you lose that lead, which we think is really critical.

And there have been studies that have shown when you couple live chat with live view that people have an close to 90% higher satisfaction rate than they did on sites where they don't have that opportunity to chat and to cobrowse with a support agent. And we just feel like it's a really great opportunity to not only help customers when and where they need it. But when you pair it with a tool like surveys where you can proactively reach out to people where you think maybe they're having an issue or maybe you've watched session recordings and you think I see a lot of people getting hung up on my shipping and return policies page. I wonder if there's a problem there. Well You can trigger a live chat to engage people when they land on that shipping policies page. Or you could have a survey, which we offer within Lucky Orange to ask people, do you have any questions? Do you need more information that we're not providing and get some of that firsthand feedback so that it's not just one directional, but you really to understand that customer experience, have the opportunity to study what they did, but also to engage with them while they're on your site, which we feel like is a really important part of that sort of closed loop ability to understand customers better.

Mike: And that makes a lot of sense. I mean, you mentioned something, I think it'll be quite interesting to our b2b audience, which is form analytics. I mean, a lot of b2b websites, it's all about generating leads, capturing leads, I'm really interested, you have some examples of how people have used those form analytics to improve conversion rates?

Sarah: Yeah, I certainly do. And I can tell you, as a b2b marketer, myself, when I came to Lucky Orange, this was one of the tools that, you know, my jaw kind of hit the floor, because as a marketer, in a b2b organisation, you really want to generate those leads. And that's what you're handing off to your sales team. And that's, you know, how you get business done at the end of the day. And when I learned that there was a tool that allow you to see which fields people were abandoning, I just couldn't believe that this wasn't more used throughout the industry, because it is really powerful. I mean, if you've got a form, and a lot of times, you know, when marketing's working with sales, they're like, Okay, what is all of the information, we need to populate every single form in our CRM, so you get these really long fields. And this is where form analytics can come in. And be very handy because it helps you understand where people are dropping off. And one of the examples that we've seen is that when people are filling out a form on a website, they don't want to talk to a person on the phone. So when you ask for that phone number, a lot of people will abandon the form at that field, because they don't want to give their phone number. So that is one really great piece of insight that we've seen for b2b marketers is, if you don't need that phone number, if you can build the relationship first with them via email, do that. And then once you've gained their trust, once they show further signs of engagement, then you can ask for that phone number down the line. Another thing to look for on forum analytics is fields that get repeated because this is often a sign that your field may be confusing, or it may need some more instruction. So if you can do some of that inline description within your form fields, you know, we've all seen that in forms where it asks for a phone number, but it has very specific expectations. Or if it asks for an address, if you're trying to get that information, and it wants it in a very specific format that people if you don't explain what that format is, then people will have to continue to repeat that field. And oftentimes, they'll abandon because they just get frustrated with the form fields.

Mike: That's, that's fascinating. So you can actually see in those analytics, where people are submitting the form, getting an error and then having to reenter it. So you get to see those and always live those problems with users. That's awesome. So you've got all these tools? I mean, one of the things one of the other features you've got is conversion funnels, which I guess is, you know, is ultimately what we're trying to do, you're trying to make the website more effective at converting visitors to become customers or leads. There's lots of different conversion funnel tools from you know, Google Analytics all the way up. Can you tell me a little bit about what Lucky Orange does and how you differ from some of the other suppliers?

Sarah: Sure. So you can look at a conversion funnel and other tools like Google Analytics. And for those who aren't familiar with conversion funnels, it's essentially a predefined set of steps that walks you through the pages that you expect someone to visit on their way to conversion. And a conversion funnel will show you as they go from page to page or step to step on your website, where they're dropping off. And we're lucky orange is different than a tool like Google Analytics is that let's say you've got a four step conversion funnel. And you see that when people get to that third step, they drop off. Well, you can dial into that third step, and you can watch a session recording from there to see and understand exactly why someone's dropping off. And you simply can't do that in a tool like Google Analytics, because they don't have that capability. And so you not only know where people are dropping off, but you have the opportunity to watch some of those recordings and see, is it a technical issue that they're encountering? Maybe that's preventing them from getting to the next step? Or is there something that you can infer from while everybody's looking at this stuff? Shouldn't when I look at this page and I study these session recordings, it seems like everyone's hovering over the price or hovering over this piece of information.

And then they're abandoning. So that could be an indicator to you there. And you can take that information, if you know that people are abandoning on that third step on that third page, right before they convert, you can set up a survey, or you can trigger a live chat so that when people get there, you can ask them for more information, is there anything I can help you with today? So you can take that hypothesis that you formulated by watching those session recordings, and then do some first person research with those people who are coming to your website to, you know, either do a survey that you can have running when you're not available, or use that live chat when you are available to trigger on that specific page to try and get a better understanding of why people aren't converting?

Mike: Oh, that's awesome. I mean, there's other features as well, we haven't had time to cover. I mean, one of the things I have to admit is I do this podcast for selfish reasons, I want to learn things. So I'm gonna take advantage of the opportunity. You know, there's so many different tools you've got there for optimising websites. If I was looking to optimise a Napier website, I mean, where would I start? How would I begin?

Sarah: Yeah, that is a great question. And it's one that we get a lot from people. And I would say the best place to start is really going in and looking at those pages where you have a high conversion probability. And starting there and study those and figure out look at some session recordings on the pages that you know, are critical to conversions and see if you can uncover why people aren't converting there. And then as a marketer, I would go in and analyse those campaigns where I'm spending the most money to get people to my site and see what I can glean from those.

Mike: That's great. And you've got all these tools available for when you actually need to use them once you've done some investigation. I mean, perhaps, you know, one of the things we need to talk about is price, it sounds like this should be a very expensive package having all these different tools together. I mean, is it inexpensive product.

Sarah: It you know, for us Lucky Orange is a tool that we created as something to help us solve problems for our own small businesses that we had. And that's something that we keep in mind from a pricing standpoint is that we certainly know there are a lot of our competitors out there who charge enterprise prices, and you won't find those enterprise prices on their website. And that's something that we keep in mind, when we're pricing our products is that we do want to help small businesses, because that is how we got our start. And we certainly scale up to enterprise customers, we have fortune 500 companies who use our products and international businesses, Shopify Plus customers, big household name brands, who would recognise but we also have a lot of customers who are in that Shopify piece of the market, or who are just getting started, who desperately need analytical tools like this. And so that is something that that we do think about, and that we do factor in and we want to be affordable to those companies who, you know, are core to why we started Lucky Orange in the first place who, you know, we really want to help them succeed and thrive. And we don't want Lucky Orange to be a tool that a small business owner can't afford, because we really do believe these tools have the potential to help them grow and unlock their business.

Mike: That's perfect and really good to hear. So, I mean, we're coming to the, to the end of our time now. So I'm interested in anything we should have covered. Are there any secret features we've missed out or anything else that you feel you should tell us?

Sarah: Yeah, you know, I think the key to conversion rate optimization, which is what you use lucky, orange tools to do as a marketer is you have to be programmatic about it, you have to constantly go in and study the data, and that the insights that you gain and learn about your site on one day and the changes that you make that may be working, maybe need may need to be revisited in you know, a month or two months or three months and that it's not a let me do it once and then I'm done with it. As behaviour changes on the on the internet as people's consumption patterns change as what they are interested in, you know, popularity trends and fads changes. Conversion Rate Optimization is an ongoing process. And it's something that if you are looking to do more of or to get started with I encourage you to think about the time that you'll have to commit to it on a weekly basis and block out some time because it is something you know, studying data, anyone who dives in on the analytics, you know, you have to make time for it. And it is something the more programmatic you can be about it the more that you can dedicate time and resources, the better results that you'll have because you've committed to going in and learning and under See any more about your visitors so you can make those more impactful experiences with your website?

Mike: That's great advice. Thank you. So I'm sure you know, everyone's excited and interested. I mean, everyone wants to increase conversion rates on websites. So if people have questions, or maybe they want to try the product, how can people go about, you know, either getting hold of you or testing the product for themselves?

Sarah: Sure, the easiest way to do that is just to go to Lucky You can sign up for a free trial, you get seven days to test out the tool. And there are also free plans available. So if you try it out for seven days, and you want to keep going with it and want to play around with it a little longer than you can trial, a free plan on Lucky Orange. And that's really the easiest and the best way to go in and learn more about it. And from our website. If you have more questions. Our support team is always available through our website, or via an email at support at Lucky Orange. And they're an awesome group of people who love helping our customers. And it doesn't matter if you're on a free trial, or a free plan or a paid plan. We help all of our customers and support them equally.

Mike: Oh, that's perfect. I'm sure people listening to podcasts will want to try it. I mean, Sarah has been really interesting talking to you about the tools and about how people can improve conversion rates. I really appreciate it. Thank you for being on the podcast.

Sarah: Absolutely. Thanks for having me, Mike. Thank you.

Mike: Thanks so much for listening to marketing b2b Tech. We hope you enjoyed the episode. And if you did, please make sure you subscribe on iTunes, or on your favourite podcast application. If you'd like to know more, please visit our website at Napier b2b dot com or contact me directly on LinkedIn.

Bodo's Power Systems Panel Discussion Returns for PCIM Europe 2022

There's no denying that face to face shows are making a comeback, with several industry events due to take place this year, including PCIM Europe. 

So we were delighted to hear that Bodo's Power Systems panel discussions will be returning to PCIM Europe as part of the industry forum, split into three sessions. The first session will take place on Wednesday 11th May from 1.10pm-2.10pm CEST focusing on SiC, followed by a session from 2.15pm-3.15pm CEST with a focus on GaN, with the final session on SiC taking place on Thursday 12th May from 1.45pm-2.45pm CEST.

Bodo's Power Systems will also be exhibiting at the show in Hall 6, Booth 246.


WEKA FACHMEDIEN Reveals New Interactive Magazine Format

WEKA FACHMEDIEN has unveiled its new interactive magazine format, with a special edition of Computer & Automation. 

Technical articles, interviews, user reports and news within the magazine are displayed with interactive elements, embedding content such as videos, picture galleries, GIFS and websites.

Readers are also able to express their opinions and views directly via embedded surveys throughout the online issue.

We've seen a trend in publishers move towards digital tactics, and it's exciting to see WEKA fully embrace digital elements to provide readers with a new and engaging format. It will be interesting to see if other publishers follow suit and whether this interactive version of magazines becomes the standard for online editions.

To view the online version of Computer & Automation, please click here. 


Napier Wins 'Agency of the Future' Award at the B2B Marketing Expo California

The Napier team recently exhibited at the B2B Marketing Expo California in LA, and we are delighted to share that we were named the winners of the 'Agency of the Future' award.

Faced with tough competition, the award reflects the hard-working team at Napier, with Mike Maynard, Managing Director commenting, "Taking home the agency of the future award was a great end to the B2B Marketing Expo. As the show marked our expansion in the USA with the launch of our San Fransico office, we are truly looking towards the future, and I'm extremely proud of the Napier team and grateful to our amazing clients".


For an overview of what the team got up to at the show, why not check out the video below...

IEEE SOCC 2022 Opens Call for Papers

The IEEE International System-on-Chip Conference (SOCC) has launched its call for papers, inviting professionals to submit content which addresses new and previously unpublished results in all areas related to SoC, including topics such as:

  • Devices and platforms for accelerated AI/ML computing
  • Emerging and disruptive technologies
  • Design for secure and reliable systems
  • Heterogeneous and mang-core SoC architectures
  • Circuits and systems
  • Low Power Design
  • Design Methodologies and development flaws

The IEEE SOCC is a leading forum for sharing the latest advancements in SoC architecture, systems, logic and circuit design, process technology, test, design tools, and applications. 2022 marks the 35th year of the conference and will take place from 5th-8th September in the Belfast’s Titanic Quarter, Northern Ireland.

The event features a three-day technical programme which includes speeches, presentations and hot-topic panel sessions, as well as networking opportunities.

Here at Napier, we are delighted to see the IEEE SOCC reach a milestone of 35 years, and we look forward to receiving what we are sure will be positive feedback from the event.

Papers are due by May 16th 2022, and more information about submissions can be found by clicking here. 


Leading European Tech Marketing Agency, Napier, Opens First Office in USA

Dedicated local team in SF Bay Area on a mission to support rapidly growing demand for UK’s leading independent B2B Tech Integrated Public Relations and Marketing Agency.

From the show floor of B2B Marketing Expo 2022, Napier, one of Europe’s leading independently-owned B2B technology marketing and PR firms, today announced its expansion into the USA with the opening of its first office in Alameda, CA. The move to the SF Bay Area comes on the heels of significant demand from American and European clients to access the best-in-class service that they have come to expect from Napier’s European operations throughout the US.

The team at Napier has a proven track record of delivering award-winning campaigns for a robust list of global technology clients and has been at the heart of marketing technology in Europe since 1984. The agency combines strategic planning, content generation and content distribution using channels such as PR, marketing automation and new media to deliver cohesive, global and regional campaigns which accelerate the speed of prospect through its clients’ marketing funnels. By designing campaigns to meet clients’ business goals, the team helps our leading technology companies turn objectives into achievements.

“I am incredibly excited to be opening our first office in the US. It reflects our commitment to our present and future clients, helping them achieve even greater measurable success with innovative digital marketing, engaging content creation and quality public relations campaigns that have defined Napier over the last 38 years.” said Mike Maynard, CEO and Managing Director of Napier. “My team can’t wait to dive into the limitless opportunities to drive awareness and growth for US firms continuing to build their presence in Europe and globally, while our European clients are ready to make waves in the US. We aim to be the awareness to opportunity integrated marketing agency that bridges the two continents.”

Pass the Secret Sauce Podcast: Build and Track Your Customer’s Journey

Mike Maynard, Managing Director at Napier featured on the Pass the Secret Sauce Podcast, to share his thoughts on how B2B marketers can build and track their customer journey, and tactics to reach their target audiences effectively.

Listen to the full interview here, or via your favourite podcast app, and don’t hesitate to get in touch and let us know your thoughts.

Editorial Changes at WEKA FACHMEDIEN

Markus Haller, Editor at WEKA FACHMEDIEN, has left the publishing house for a new role as part of the marketing team at Rohde & Schwarz.

Markus was previously Editor of, Elektronik and Markt & Technik, and in his absence, Nicole Woerner will be taking over his responsibilities for these publications.

We wish Markus the best of luck in his new role and look forward to continuing to work closely with Nicole.



A Napier Webinar: Don't Get Left Behind: Next-Generation B2B Content Tools

Content marketing is continuously evolving, and the format of content is no exception. New B2B content tools are now available offering marketers an interactive, and engaging format to break away from traditional PDFs, and have access to in-depth analytics on the performance of each content piece.

Napier recently held a webinar 'Don't Get Left Behind: Next Generation B2B Content Tools' and explored:

  • The importance of content marketing
  • Why today's solutions don't work
  • Why PDFs suck
  • The route to success with engaging formats and great analytics
  • Introduction to Turtl

Register to view our webinar on demand by clicking here, and why not get in touch to let us know if our insights helped you.

Napier Webinar: ‘Don't Get Left Behind: Next Generation B2B Content Tools’ Transcript

Speakers: Mike Maynard

Hi, everyone, and thank you for joining the latest Napier webinar. This is quite exciting, this webinar is going to be talking about next generation content tools. So it combines two things I really care about. One is content for marketing purposes. And the other is technology. So I mean, for me, this is a really exciting webinar. Because there's a lot we can do from this, that's going to be actionable. And I'm going to present the webinar and then we'll obviously invite any questions you have after the webinar. So if you do have anything you'd like to ask, feel free to put it into the chat. And I'll try and cover any questions we get at the end.

So to start with, this is all about not getting left behind. It's about the next generation of content tools that are really starting to have an impact on b2b marketing. And when we look at content, what do we want to do? Well, we want to have tools that are great for creating content, tools that engage the audience. And we also need tools that actually gather data that's actionable, that lets you feed back into your next steps either to optimise your campaigns generally, or alternatively, to optimise your campaigns on a personal basis with personalization. So this is what we're looking for. But what do we have today? Well, today, pretty much a lot of our content goes out as PDF. And I don't really want to skew the debate, but I hate PDFs. Let's be honest, when PDFs came out, they were pretty amazing. But this was 25 years ago, maybe 30 years ago. And PDFs are fundamentally based on the print publishing model. You create something and then you distribute it to a lot of people. I mean, this model is 400 years old, why are we still creating PDFs, that are based upon a really old model and using that for most of our content? You know, PDFs? Yes, they do ensure things look consistent. And that was a big deal. At the time they first came out, but they're rigid. They're very hard to personalise. And they tell me nothing about what the person who received the PDF found interesting. In fact, they don't even tell me if the person who received the PDF, actually open the document. And so PDFs really have had their day. And I'm looking for an opportunity to find content generation tools and content platforms that are going to provide a much better experience both for me as a marketer, and also for the audience's I'm trying to reach.

So how do we get here, I mean, I referenced the introduction of PDFs, I think it's important to know where we are now and the expectations of the audience's that we're trying to target in b2b technology in terms of the content they want. So back in the 1990s, it was really the offline era, it's when PDFs came in and started to really be very common. And what was happening was, typically, we weren't emailing either PDFs or PowerPoints or Word documents. So we were sending content, but it was relatively low tech, it certainly wasn't in any way engaged. And at the turn of the century, we moved into a broadcast area. So we started having things like content management systems, and also customer relationship management systems, and email tools that actually made it easier to broadcast content. So we started being able to get content more easily out to people, rather than just simply, you know, emailing on a one to one basis, a PDF or a PowerPoint. We move forward 10 years to 2010s. And that became the customer that this was really the decade of people understanding the importance of personas. And so here, in the last 10 years, we've really been focused on creating content that's optimised around a group of people or a persona. It creates much better engagement, and is a really effective way to improve our content. But it's still fundamentally a broadcast approach. However, now in the 2020s, I think the world has changed. And we're now in what Accenture called in the Harvard Business Review the relationship era. And we're now at a point where really to be effective in marketing, you have to be able to create one to one relationships digitally. And that means you have to personalise on a one to one on an individual basis. And this is certainly something where the PDF really can't go any further. I'm creating Seeing you know, personalised PDFs is very difficult. distributing them is also difficult. And so we need a new and better solution. But the important thing is, we're all busy.

So we need to look at what the trade off is between effectiveness and efforts. And here's a really simple graph, comparing the effectiveness of content to the amount of effort required to create it. So if we look on the left hand side, we've got things like Word documents, PowerPoints, PDFs, static kind of content, it's not personalised, it's not customised. It's generally less effective. But it's super easy to create. We all love creating PowerPoints, you know, and probably we all create too many. So I think, you know, it's easy, but less effective. And we move beyond the document format to the middle of the screen, and we start looking at, you know, marketing tools, which could be things like content management systems on your website. It could be interactive content, maybe in some email tools. And they certainly are more effective because they become more personalised. And they're also more engaging, people have more of an opportunity to pick the content they like. But they are becoming quite hard to create. And then today, if we look at marketing automation, marketing automation platforms can be very, very effective, you can create highly personalised, highly engaged content through marketing automation. But it's fundamentally a specialist job to create that content. And so marketing automation tools are typically hard to use, it's hard to create that content.

What we really want is we want the best of both worlds, we want something that's designed to create very engaging, effective content. But it's also easy to use and doesn't require specialist knowledge or training. And what we're going to talk about today is a product called turtle turtle is a content automation platform. So it's been designed specifically to create content that is used in marketing campaigns. And what we're going to talk about is why a content automation platform is different from a standard document or marketing tools, or even marketing automation platforms, and what the benefits are, and why you should be looking to use content automation platforms in the future, rather than relying on some of the legacy tools that frankly, have kind of, you know, run out of steam with the demands for more and more personalization. So, content automation platforms, they're the alternative to PDFs, the thing we need to do clearly, is we need to look at the impact of a content automation tool, versus using a standard PDF.

And there's been some research that's been done. And here's some research produced by turtle, where they found that when you send a document using turtle rather than a PDF, people spend 1,000%, or 10 times more time engaging with the content on turtle versus using a marketing brochure as a PDF. It's slightly less of an impact on mobile, but it's still over seven times the amount of time. So just imagine getting your target audience to increase the time they spend looking at content by a factor of seven. That's incredible. That's a huge change. And so just changing the format can give you a real benefit in terms of engagement from your audience. And the other thing is that when readers were asked about their perception of brands, and readers receiving the turtle document, were actually five times more likely to perceive a brand in a positive light than just receiving a PDF. I mean, the truth is our audiences, they also don't like PDFs, PDFs are old. They're antiquated. They're inflexible, they don't make it easy for people to pick out the content that's relevant. And so actually, we're doing our readers a favour by sending them a more effective format. And if you want to summarise this, basically, you lose 90% of the engagement on desktop, when you're sending a PDF, as opposed to using a more modern format. That is a huge impact and something I think that we all want to try and avoid. Now, I mentioned this earlier, but it's not just content and turtles been designed. And we'll talk a little bit about the turtle platform specifically, and some of its features in a minute. It's been designed to provide content that is in gauging that gap grabs the reader's attention. But to me, that's not really the most exciting thing, the most exciting thing is the data you get. You know, we're all in marketing, we all understand the importance of data. And the tracking and analytics provided by turtle are incredible. And the value they provide can actually transform how you approach marketing campaigns.

So turtle offers you the capability to actually keep track of almost every interaction from an individual user. So if we look at what's happening there and your user, we know, when they turn a page, that means we know how long they spend looking at a page. We know when they look at the contents menu, we know when they fill in a form, we know when they watch a video, we know when they listen to audio. And we can map this all down. And we can map this on both an individual and also on a general aggregate level. So we can understand what individuals are doing. And we can also optimise the content to appeal to the majority of the audience. This is something we can't even begin to do when we look at PDF, because we have none of this data. And so we can personalise and personalization is really important. I mean, I think, you know, we all understand that personalization is key. Hopefully the Accenture report I presented earlier gives you an idea of the importance of personalization. Research says that 74% of people are frustrated when they get generic content. It's not personalised and not relevant. And we know this, we know three quarters of our audience want personalised content, because actually, when you ask marketers 98% of marketers say that they believe customers expect personalised experiences. And that really matters. And it matters in terms of the bottom line as well.

So some research by McKinsey actually found that personalization of content ultimately drives an increase in sales. And McKinsey found that by personalising content, you can increase sales revenue by five to 15%. That's a big jump in the number of sales you get, just by doing marketing in a more personalised way by using modern marketing tools. So to create personalization, and to make use of the data, we need platforms that can actually process the data. And obviously, one of the key areas we're going to process marketing data is in our marketing automation platforms. So a typical marketing automation platform has maybe five elements to it. So companies that are using marketing automation, they want to have better targeting. They obviously want automation to save time. They want analytics. They need scalability, and they want to create engagement. Now initially, you might say, well, turtle, it's a content automation platform that's staying in the engagement sector. But that's not true. If we look at modern content platforms, they can help you across the whole range of areas, that market automation adds value, from the ability to provide data over what your audience is looking at, and therefore what they're interested in. And therefore how you can target them all the way through to offering a scalable platform that can generate personalised content for large number of people without needing a lot of manual efforts. And so, having a content automation platform is really key as part of a marketing automation strategy. A turtle, they've run some tests, they use HubSpot as their marketing automation. And they've seen almost a 60% increase in opening rate of content. And over a doubling in terms of click throughs. When using marketing that is based upon a content automation platform, so a much more modern format. So what we can do is we can add to total personalization to any marketing stack. So any marketing technology stack. And turtle is really interesting because it offers a number of ways to drive that personalization engine. And this is great because it means there's not one size fits all. So sometimes you're going to want self service personalization. So as an example, someone comes they watch, they find a turtle document, they select a few things within a form inside the turtle document and that will then serve them slightly different content based upon what they say their interests are. So self service personalization. batch file personalization is very simple. That's up loading of a spreadsheet to create a large number of versions of a document each one personalised to the individual. Or if you're using the marking automation tool, you can actually do that all automatically through the API. And finally, Turtle also offers functionality that will allow people to personalise the document before they enter it. So answer a couple of questions. And they will then receive a personalised virtual document. And it's important to say with turtle is, we're not looking at personalization in the way of just putting a company name or a logo, or an individual's name on a document. I mean, yes, absolutely. The technology exists to do that. But the personalization goes way beyond that. It's all about what content you include. And it's whether you add or remove certain topics. And indeed, which order you want to serve those topics up. So you can have complete flexibility in how that documents built, again, something that's incredibly difficult to do if you're building content as a PDF. So how does this all impact our workflow? We've we've got this ability to create content, we've got this ability to personalise content. But what does it mean in terms of our campaigns? Well, this is what we're going to talk about next. And typically, we see something like this as a workflow.

So what will happen is we've got a Contact Relationship Management System CRM, we've got a bunch of contacts, or it could be a marketing automation system, we want to run a campaign to them, we already know a little bit about that individual, you know, not least, we probably know their name, we probably know their company name. But we might also know job titles, or, you know, other demographic information, very simple stuff, that's going to point us to the kind of topics that a particular person will be interested in. So as an example, I might be running a campaign for a technology product. And I might be tight trying to target an engineering department, and also the C suite, those two audiences would need very different content. But I can do is I can pull the data from CRM, I can personalise the document, using the turtle personalization engine, and that can either be automatic through the API, or by uploading a spreadsheet. And so you can have things like the company name for sure. But also you can show, you know, for example, financial information to the C suite. Whereas for the engineers, you might want to show technical information, we then run a campaign, the campaign goes out to our audience, and the audience interacts with the document. And we already know from the research, the audience is going to interact more than they would do with a PDF. But we will know from the analytics, which pages they looked at who looked at which page, how long they spent, and so we start getting more information about our contacts. So we might find, for example, that we have, you know, a group of engineering managers who actually look at financial information more than they look at technical. And then perhaps the lower level engineers are more focused on technical features, rather than financial. So we start pulling that in. And that's amazing, because we take that data, and we can do two things. One is we can actually learn from that and build better campaigns next time.

But also, we can feed the information about what interests each individual back into our CRM or our marketing automation system, so that our next campaign is going to be even more personalised. And he you see an overview in the table of some of the things you can do, from you know, segmenting the contacts in the CRM, all the way through to applying personalised emails based upon what people did when they interacted with the turkey documents. So what does this mean? Well, what it means is that if we are creating a campaign, and we're using a modern document format, we're actually creating a much more effective campaign, integrating it with our marketing technology stack, we'll be able to understand who's engaged who's in market Who's ready for outreach, this is the ultimate and lead qualification today, if you look at marketing automation, a lot of lead qualification is done on either email clicks or form fills. And they're both very, very crude metrics. I mean, they're absolutely better than not having anything. But what we can sell is we can sell not only who spends time looking at a document looking at content using a modern platform, but we can also look at whether people are looking at information that is more top of the funnel, or more towards the bottom of the funnel, where for whereby they're in market ready to buy, and they're the people we need to talk to. It's much easier to do that, sending them a document and then analysing their engagement with a document than it is to try and do a sequence of emails, each one targeting a different stage of the funnel and then trying to To judge engagement from that. So it makes it very simple to understand where people are in the customer journey. I've mentioned about gathering data. And this is absolutely important not only at the personal level, but also the general level. So we can actually gain insight that's going to let us understand what's the best channel and the best messaging that resonates with our audience. For every campaign, we go forward. So every time we run campaigns like this, our marketing gets more intelligent and more effective. And finally, by understanding the customer journey more and getting more actionable data on who's ready to buy, and who's merely looking, and probably some way off, we can actually help not only integrate marketing and sales, but make that whole process more predictable. And that will also help in terms of identifying outcomes, or identifying who's at the bottom of the funnel, it's going to make it much easier for us to assess the likely return on investment, as we move that campaign, from the initial outreach with content through to trying to close with the sales team.

So I'm just going to talk a little bit about turtle now. I mean, obviously, we've talked about content. And there are a number of content automation platforms available. We personally believe that turtle is a long way ahead of the others. And that's why Napier has signed up with a partnership. So hopefully, you'll excuse the promotion of turtle, although a lot of the features are available on some of the other systems. So turtle basically has four elements. And these are the four elements you need in the Content Automation system, you need something that provides a great format for reading and engaging with content, you need a tool that makes it easy to create that content. So the content production needs to be easy. We've talked about personalization, personalization is really hard. And if a tool is not designed to personalise at scale, then it's not going to work. And so a rapid personalization engine is crucial. And lastly, you need the insight from the behaviour. So you need to better understand the behaviour of everybody on the different documents, and then gain insight from what they've done. So we'll look at each of these in turn, the reading format has, you know, three key elements. It's highly visual. It's explorative. So the reader actually chooses their own journey. And it's interactive.

All three of these things are based on psychological research, that not only determines what's going to cause the greatest engagement, but also what's going to cause the highest level of recall. So by creating something that's visual that people can choose their journey through. And that involves some degree of clicking and engagement, you're going to get generate content that is much more effective than simply sending a PDF and having a passive reading experience. So the reading format has been designed specifically to optimise the results. content production has been designed to simplify the process. So perhaps most important is the control of the brand. Like many content systems, Turtle actually basically gives you training wheels, so you're creating content, but turtle is guiding you to make sure that everything is on brand, whether that be fonts or colours, or layout or anything else. So it makes it very easy to design stuff on brand. And the contents modular, we can pull modules in from one document to another, which is incredibly useful. Because quite often there are typically pages that we want to reuse in different documents makes it very quick to generate new content. And turtles always up to date. I mean, one of the challenges with PDF is it tends to be something that is sent to a reader. And then they may hang on to it, whether that's an email or whether they've downloaded it. And any updates we make subsequently will not impact the PDF that's on any of our audiences PCs.

However, Turtle by being natively online will always be up to date. And that's not only in terms of what you're having in the content, but also in terms of the brand and you can actually automate brand updates through circle. So all documents get updated without needing any kind of manual intervention. And it removes that really painful process when a brand is changed or logos modified. And you have to go through and recreate all those PDFs. And ultimately, turtles research has found that content production costs can drop by up to 90%. And content is produced 80% faster. So huge benefits in terms of generating content. I've talked a lot about personalization and personalization really, really matters. And so we can do one to one personalization either forms within the document, or forms prior to opening the document that allow people to select, you know, anything. And this form can be completely flexible. So it could be based upon the industry or in the location you are, or something that's purely individual. And that will allow the document to be customised. And as I say, it could be anything from company name, all the way through to the actual content of the document and the order of the pages appear. We can actually create large outbound campaigns by creating customised content at scale from a spreadsheet, or we can actually automate that completely by integrating our marketing stack or a marketing automation platform with turtle to automatically send out customised documents. So customization becomes very, very easy and very quick. And then the insights and this, to me is the most valuable part of turtle is understanding what parts of your content have actually generated a response from your audience.

And what parts frankly, they're bored with. So you can do this on different levels. So you can look at individuals, and you can actually follow an individual through a reading journey you could look at, you know which pages they looked at, and how long they spent looking at the pages. You can see the sections and the interest readers as well as the content they skip. And you can pull this all together. So you can actually plan future campaigns or future messaging. Because you know, what it resonates with your audience, you know, what they care about, you know, what they spend time reading. And so it gives you far more intelligence to create better campaigns in the future. And the structure of turtle and you'll probably have noticed this is a turtle document is that you have the main page called a surf page, which highlights a topic. And then you have pages they call immerse pages, where you go into details, this is obviously a most page. So you can look at who clicks through from the surf page to the immerse pages to find more information. And you can look at who looks at a topic title, and just skip through it because it is relevant. So it gives you data at a really granular level. And what this does is it changes the way we generate content. And so when you first use a new content automation platform, you're initially going to have benefits of a more engaging format. PDF is not engaging, it's very functional. And certainly there's lots of engineers that are still going to be reading PDF data sheets in 10 years time, I've got no doubt. But for marketing content, PDF is not very effective, and tends to be fairly unengaging. And so your your benefit on day one is more engaging content. But what happens is, is that data that you get takes you through different stages. And we work with clients to go from this, you know, initial stage of more engagement through to being able to generate strategies based on data. And then personalised content, and then actually trying to converge and looking at what content is driving the results. So we start doing a data driven approach toward content. And ultimately, you can even have a fully automated system, where your marketing automation is driving the creation of highly customised and highly personalised content based upon a library of pages.

And so you can move from a situation where you start with just a more engaging format, and you end up delivering content, that is exactly what the reader wants. And he knows exactly what the reader wants, because you've driven that content through data and analysis, and not through, you know, marketing guesswork. So, in summary, I would say there's a huge opportunity for people, you know, but what we need to do is we all need to think about a better way to do things. PDF, yes, it's probably still gonna stay for things like technical data sheets. But in terms of marketing, let's make content better. And let's actually make our readers enjoy reading our marketing content more than they do at the moment. It's getting them more engaged, and ultimately, let's generate better results. So that's an overview of turtle and where we see content going.

If anyone's got any questions, I'd be really happy to ask them. So feel free to put questions into the chat. Okay, I think I've only got one question at the moment, which is regarding the cost of turtle. And the answer to that is it's actually quite a complex answer. So turtles starts off, literally at a low hundreds of pounds a month as a content automation platform, but then there's more and more features that are available. And as you scale up, turtle will then become, you know, more expensive, particularly as you use more enterprise level features. But at the low level, the introductory level, and you can create 10s of concept of turtle documents, you can use those widely. And you also get things like the data and some personalization features. So, Turtle actually is not an expensive tool to start off with. And it's really only when you want highly complex API integrations, that you're going to start seeing it taking a significant part of your marketing budget. So thank you for that question. I don't think there are any more questions in the chat. If anybody has any questions, please, please feel free to contact me. And I think most people know, my email is Mike at Napier b2b dot com. Send me an email with a question or if you'd like to see circle, inaction and how it can help you obviously we'd be more than happy to do that. Thanks very much for your time. I really appreciate it and I look forward to seeing your questions.

Marketing Agency Leadership Podcast: Marketing Long-Cycle B2B Tech

Rob Kischuk, the host of the Marketing Agency Leadership podcast, sat down with Mike, Managing Director at Napier, to discuss how to use marketing successfully with long-cycle B2B technology clients. He shares how Napier uses the customer journey to keep the product long-term on the minds of “future” customers by helping them stay apprised of industry trends and leading-edge developments.

Listen to the full interview here, or via your favourite podcast app, and don’t hesitate to get in touch and let us know your thoughts.

Entries Open for The Electronics Industry Awards 2022

The Electronics Industry Awards (EIA) 2022 is now open for entries, with the award ceremony due to take place on Thursday 20th October 2022 at the Tower Hotel in London.

Now in its fifth year, the Electronics Industry Awards has established itself as one of the leading award ceremonies in the electronics sector; and is unique in the way it provides professionals with the opportunity to vote for the people, products and companies that they feel deserve to be recognised for their contributions to the industry.

This year, the award ceremony will be taking place alongside the brand-new Instrumentation Excellence Awards. A joint champagne reception for both events will take place, ahead of separate award ceremonies, and then they will come together at the end of the night for further networking opportunities.

With a total of 19 awards up for grabs, this year, the EIA has introduced three new categories, including: Medical Product of the year, Semiconductor Product of the year, and Rising Star. Entries will close on 20th June 2022, and a shortlist of five nominees per category will be announced once the industry voting and judging has taken place.

We wish the best of luck to everyone entering the awards and look forward to attending the event in October.

Hardware Pioneers Max Announces Date for 2022

Hardware Pioneers Max, the annual gathering of IoT Innovators, has announced that it will be going ahead on 25th October 2022, at the Business Design Centre in London.

The event provides a place for engineers, as well as technical and business leaders whose companies are developing B2B and B2C IoT device systems to meet and network with a community of leading experts and suppliers in the IoT space.

Visitors will have the opportunity to attend seminars by industry experts, and the event will also feature an exhibition hall that will showcase the latest hardware and software technologies available for IoT devices.

At Napier, we think it's great to see the events sector back in full swing and be able to provide the industry with these opportunities to come together as a community.

Further information on exhibitors and speakers will be released soon, and pre-registration is now open on the Hardware Pioneers website. 



Aspencore Announces PowerUP Conference 2022

Aspencore will be hosting a three-day virtual conference and exhibition focusing on power electronics, taking place from 28th-30th June 2022.

The PowerUP Expo will host a technical conference, which will feature topic-specific sessions of keynotes, panel discussions, technical presentations, and tutorials about major technical trends. Alongside the conference, an exhibition hall will be available, featuring virtual booths from leading power electronics companies, as well as a live chat tool enabling visitors to directly connect with booth personnel.

The event will focus on several key topics such as wide-bandgap (WBG) semiconductors, motion control, smart and renewable energies, and wireless power transfer.

Call for papers is currently open, with submissions due by 30th March 2022.

Over the last couple of years, it's been clear to see how successful virtual events can be, and Aspencore continues to make an investment in the future of digital, as they welcomed Kai Hsing as its new General Manager and Publisher last month. Kai joins the team with a career in the digital media and advertising industry, with a focus on building and scaling audiences for specialised verticals.

We look forward to hearing what we are sure will be great feedback from the event, and seeing the direction Aspencore takes in the future.

A Napier Podcast: Interview with Carolin Bink - 1plusX

In this podcast episode, we interview Carolin Bink, VP of Customer Success at 1plusX, an AI-driven data management platform.

Carolin shares what makes 1plusX different to other data management platforms, how their AI-first approach helps both publishers and marketers to utilize data, and what the impact is for marketers with third party cookies going away.

Listen to the podcast now via the links below:

Transcript: Interview with Carolin Bink - 1plusX

Speakers: Mike Maynard, Carolin Bink

Mike: Thanks for listening to marketing b2b Tech, the podcast from Napier, where you can find out what really works in b2b marketing today. Welcome to the latest episode of marketing b2b technology that podcast from Napier. Today I'm joined by Carolin Bink, who's the VP of Customer Success at one plus x. Welcome to the podcast, Carolin.

Carolin: Hi, nice to meet you. And happy to be here.

Mike: It's great to have you on now. I mean, I've been really keen about this interview, because I looked at your LinkedIn profile. And it seems to me that you were a customer of one plus x and then joined the company. I mean, was it really a case of joining a company that you were using and love so much, you felt you had to work for that?

Carolin: Yeah, basically, it was pretty much like that, to be honest. So I was searching in 2016, DMP back when for the publisher in the sales house. But I worked at Axel Springer holes owns a lot of classified. So I also got into contact with a lot of markets classified data. And yeah, basically, I found this Swiss exotic looking startup that didn't do any marketing and just had engineers as employees and started working with them. And then yeah, really enjoyed it. And yeah, then I got this opportunity to, to do what I what I love the most full time consulting publishers and marketers worldwide about data strategies, and that's why I moved to work with the technic technology, I introduced this.

Mike: Well, and a big change in terms of company size from Axel Springer, which is huge. To a start up.

Carolin: Yeah, yeah, indeed. But I had the lack of Axel Springer to be kind of in start up environment like data strategy was always Yeah, it was an innovation hub. So yes, it's a change. But it was mainly changed in terms of people engineers knowledge. And also, for me a really high learning curve to learn more about AI. And really what's going on in the backend? Yes.

Mike: Awesome. So, I mean, one plus x is a data management platform. I mean, there are no end of data management platforms to help publishers and marketers. So can you just explain a little bit about what you do? And what makes you different in this market?

Carolin: Yeah, so I think what makes us different is that we always had this AI first approach. And this was something that I felt also extremely attractive when I chose one plus excessive DMP back then. Because, yeah, frankly, we had another technology before. And there were so many high expectations on using this technology. And I just remember, like a really concrete case of classifieds page that was offering a price comparison. And then people were so excited, yeah, we can finally use, people are searching for washing machines and directly sell them to washing machine providers. And yeah, obviously, the washing machine providers were quite excited about those news. And then in the end turned out like, there may be five kg of people interested in Germany in buying a washing machine, visiting a price comparison site. And still, the media currency was CPM. So basically, there was a lot of back and forth a lot of emails, a lot of high expectations.

And in the end, the marketer couldn't spend budget because there was simply no reach and the cost and the publisher was obviously also frustrated, because there was also no money coming in. And so, this is the this was the setup that I was used to when I was searching for companies that have this AI first approach like how can we utilise the data that is coming in and predict on top of the seat said users that make sense to Target and I think that made us a little bit different because this was the approach for us from day one on and for the customers that are marketers particularly, we prepare to cleanroom product that is mixing both best of both worlds where you can upload as a marketer your data set set and then you can use the publishers embedded spaced like a publisher database, obviously, privacy compliant to do expansion based on your own seat set. So we have this best of two worlds approach, which I would say is also different towards other cleanroom solution, which I personally fear or going back towards the situation that I faced in 2016. When I tried to sell Yeah, a washing machine intend to campaign to washing machine marketers to be honest.

Mike: That's true. The interesting I mean, you've used a couple of technical terms that might be be worth just explaining to people listening. So you talk about a cleanroom. What What do you mean by that? When, when you're referring to advertising?

Carolin: Sure. So yeah, obviously, right now, because of GDPR, because of CCPA. It's not easy to match data, right. So you can't just, you know, use the third party cookie that you used to use like couple of years ago, and match your users in your publishers database. So if you would like to use your CRM data, or any kind of data source that you own your first party data, and you would like to find those users into an in the publisher audience, you need a cleanroom, which is making sure that you're doing this matching privacy compliant.

Mike: Okay. So the cleanroom is, is making sure that you're meeting those requirements from GDPR. And the other regulations around the world. Yep. And obviously, that's hugely important. Because if you're not doing that, then then clearly any products are not going to be able to be sold. So it's an interesting term there. So what you're trying to do is use AI to understand how people are thinking, so whether they're considering it, in your example, buying washing machines or not, what is the benefit of AI? For the marketers who want to use that data as compared to using something simple? Is it just reach as you talked about? Or are there other benefits?

Carolin: I think, obviously, reach is part of it. So if you aren't just referring or if you're just using this technology that you always use, you will be always fishing in the same pond, more or less, especially as the internet goes blind, your opponent is drying out a little bit. So there will be less and less fish to target. And obviously, yeah, kind of it's kind of getting harder and harder for you to find your right audience or retarget your audience. So AI is helping marketers significantly to keep reach up, and also reach, let's say qualified leads, right instead of just random audiences. And yeah, I think that's also a concept that is highly known, right? If you are uploading your email addresses to go or Facebook, or you're uploading your audiences based on device IDs, and then you click on Generate look alike, audience. So I think this approach now is just getting more wider, wide. So we're also trying to have similar strategies for the open web. So I think one clear benefit for the marketer is to use AI, to increase a, let's say, qualified audience group. It's, yeah, hopefully, also, or should be also still precise, right. So it's not about just reach. But obviously, it's about this holy grail of meeting that say, the sweet spot between reach and quality. And if the internet goes blind, if the third party cookie goes away, it's also the only way I think, to at least try to have this more or less transparent customer journey tracking, maybe need to call it this way. Because, yeah, obviously, it's getting harder and harder for you to know, with whom you were already in contact on which platform platforms are fragmented. So I think these are really big benefits also, for marketers to step into the game.

Mike: I love your use of the term, the internet going blind. And maybe it's worth you just explaining that a little bit about what the the impact of the third party cookie going away means for marketers, and why that that means the internet then appears a bit blind to marketers.

Carolin: Okay, so yeah, basically, data is, I would say, also still really dominated by the demand side, if it's not by the marketers directly than it is by the agency world. I just remember a world where, you know, group had a pixel and each and every publisher page worldwide to retarget, to user they were in contact with. So they knew like I users, they have seen, I think programmatic media buying is only based on audiences that you know, already, right, you don't buy unknown traffic. But this is all based on third party cookies. And if the third party cookie is going away, because Google decided to restrict it as well and Firefox, it's already blocked on safari, it's already blogged, then it's getting harder and harder for you to identify the user in front of the page. And this is what I mean when I say the internet goes blind. So the measurability and the matching of users is what is missing, but it's still a basic concept on how programmatic works

Mike: That's, that's such a good, good explanation of what's happening. And so what you're doing is you're bringing more intelligence, presumably so that publishers can understand, you know, or predict who's likely to buy without having to track people all the way across the internet. So, so how are these publishers using this AI to generate products that they can then sell to marketers?

Carolin: Yeah, I really like this question, because that's really where I put a lot of, you know, brain power in in the last couple of years. So I think that publishers have an amazing database. So I think, if you would like to understand this, this concept of marketing with AI, you need to have both, you need to have a really good database that you can use for predictions. And you could, you also need a seed set that this really high quality that you can use as a seed for your prediction. And I think the publishers are really good and having we call this the embedded space. But what is an abandoned space embedded space is basically your database. And on the publisher page, publishers see, or it's the publishers I work with, they see the users nearly daily on two pages. So they know exactly what the user is interested in. And the users have a lot of different interest, right. So you can also check Google knows where a user is what he's intending to buy, Facebook knows exactly the relationship starters. And where what the people do in their private life, by publishers really know what people are interested in, right, and what they're frequently reading, and which sports club they support.

And if it's more about celebrity news, if it's about local politicians, if it's about global economics, so they really know what users are interested in. And they have this tonnes of data points that they can use to build up really, let's say, differentiated models, and that they can then use to, yeah, predict how these users who would I don't know, squat towards a specific seat audiences if they have likelihood to be interested in this specific product or not. And that's, this is the superpower that publishers to have that they can now use for marketers. And that's obviously what they do already now. So with their classified data, with their looking data from the subscribers, that they use the seed set, and then they're expanding those users towards a specific likelihood. The second thing that the publishers can also do is that they can use this data and enrich their assets. So the publishers basically have two superpowers, they have, on the one hand, the users, but they also have the assets. So what does this mean? It basically means that you can say I have a likelihood of 85%, this user is male. But I think I can say at the same time, I have a likelihood that this article is read by 85% male audience. And then even without knowing exactly that the person in front of the camera, or in front of the page is is male, you have this likelihood per asset that you can use to identify, which could be the right audience, even on the first impression, and that's the second superpower that publishers have.

Mike: Fantastic. I love the idea of having two superpowers. And publishers cleaner clearly have a lot to add. I mean, if we look at the first superpower, I mean, what you're doing is you're actually saying that publishers have the ability to look at a group of people your seed set, as you say, understand what they're interested in. And then what you're doing is pulling in people with similar interests. Is that right?

Carolin: Yeah, definitely based on this, this behavioural data and all the data that you can collect from the publisher. Exactly. That's what we do. We predict the likelihood for somebody to be in a specific segment based on all of this data interactions that we can collect.

Mike: And that's great. But that is a little bit as you said, like the Google audience tools where you can have look alike audiences. The other superpower you said was was really interesting, which was around knowing who reads each page or who looks at the assets. See, can you talk to me a little bit about how you help the publishers understand, you know, who's being targeted by each particular story on their website, so that they can then deliver ads that are even more relevant.

Carolin: Yes, sure. So, basically, again, you can do two things like you can crawl the the content, you can use the semantic understanding, you can identify interest out of the article itself. But you can also use the audience that you are that you are allowed to use. For example, you can use your subscribers and check them out and see how their interact with a specific article or video. And then you can make, again, a prediction and then you can use both information sources just to make a really complete prediction on the user itself, and then use this again, for users that you see for the first time that you're not able to track anything about just to personalise your, the feeling of the user, this can be an ad, but this could also be, for example, personalise the page itself.

Mike: And presumably, also, there's a benefit for publishers in terms of personalising the page because they can recommend content that the visitors more likely to read next. That's, that's great. So I'm really interested, you know, how do marketers approach publishers about this? Because that, you know, one of the things I see is a lot of the time it feels like publishers want to work with only their very biggest customers on the exciting stuff. And some of the smaller advertisers maybe don't seem to get as much attention is, do you think there's a way that more marketers can work more effectively with publishers and help them sell better services?

Carolin: Clearly, so I think, first, there is, I think, right now, there's a huge demand for trying out this new partnerships, as Google postpone the decline of the third party cookies. So everybody's still working in the old environment. But now, they really talk about alliances, Id alliances, for example, they talk about cleanroom setups. So I think, for smaller advertisers, there's also always this possibility, I mean, obviously, you need to have an automated version of the solution. So I think, especially for smaller advertisers, if publishers need to do a lot of things manually, then it's getting unattractive for them. But this needs to be the goal for the cleanroom providers to have like a 100% optimised data onboarding setup, that is allowing the publishers just to do this with a lot of advertisers, and not waste time on this 101 data transfers that are indeed unattractive for smaller advertisers. So I think, right now, the whole tech ecosystem is heavily investing in automating all of these setups. And obviously, we do as well. But I think in the future, this is exactly how it's going to work. So publishers, will this just have plugged into their system, and then advertisers can use it for matching, and then for expansion purposes without the need to go to the publisher, and, you know, do something by hand on their side.

Mike: And certainly, I think that's, that's a really good point, reflecting a lot of marketing, if you can't automate it, it's very difficult and very expensive. When you've got a tool that can automate the process, it becomes much more accessible to you know, pretty much everybody. So yeah, I love that idea. I mean, one of the challenges I see, particularly with with your solution at one plus x is it's obviously very heavily reliant on artificial intelligence and machine learning. And realistically, none of the marketers or the publishers are experts in this technology. So how do you have a conversation with your publisher or a marketer about this technology, when you don't have a deep understanding of how it works?

Carolin: I think you don't necessarily need to have a good understanding on how it works in the backend. I also honestly didn't happen before I joined one plus six. So you just need to trust us that we are really experienced and exactly that. And besides that, the rest is only onboarding, which is quite lean, and not so complicated to do. I think in I think, in general, it's just important to be open and open minded, because I also see in the industry, some people are just afraid whenever there's AI on something, they're like, Okay, I'm not going to understand it anyway. So I'm not going to try it out. And obviously there are also the people that are still really focused on their gut feeling. Because that's something I need to admit right if you would like to. If you would like to use AI, you need to trust the AI. You need to say this is my seat set. And now I find the right users for me, if you keep saying but they need to be male, they need to be between 35 and 45. And they need to have high interest in in buying cars, but only convertibles then it's not really needed us, then you can still use the standard segmentation that is offered somewhere, right? So I think this openness is something even if you don't need to understand how it works, but you need to trust this algorithm and you need to be open to tested. And that's something that I face quite often that there's still this personas going around that the market research institutes created, that the media agencies can only try to rebuild based on data. And it can be first party data, second party data. But yeah, if you really would like to try out this cleanroom approach, you need to be open, that you don't know exactly before you run the campaign, how other people look like that you're targeting, because whom you were targeted, is not defined by your gut feeling, or your research is defined by AI.

Mike: I love that. And I think that's, that's such a good indication of how marketing is changing. You know, previously, people used to create an ad, for example, an ad everybody decided they loved it, they ran it in printed publications, nobody really knew whether it was effective. But if everybody liked it, that was great. And we're moving to the situation where, you know, Google on Google ads will tell you which headlines work and which headlines don't. And it doesn't matter what you think you'll know which ones work and which don't. And, you know, it's very humbling to be wrong. And I've certainly been wrong on that. But, you know, with with products, like one plus x, you're actually helping the market or defining for the market or a lot of the audience. And that is another, you know, step for a marketer to trust technology to deliver the audience rather than to define it themselves. That's, that's fascinating. I mean, I think, you know, there isn't obvious questions. Well, there's been quite a lot of products that have hyped their use of AI, both in marketing and other areas, that actually have been very disappointing when people have tried them. So I mean, why do you think some of these AI products have failed, particularly in marketing? And what are you doing at one plus x to make sure that it's not just applying technology, but it's generating a real benefit for marketers and publishers?

Carolin: I need to say the real differentiator is the consulting, I can give you a really concrete example where I failed, to be honest. And maybe that's also something that not companies talk so open about, but I will just do because I think it's important. So I had a customer, it was a really nice customer, and they had a portal where you could buy tickets, and they had a lot of amazing ground truth data, they had like 3 million Lockton users. But the problem was that the specific tickets you could buy, obviously, it was a transportation provider. So there are differences if you're travelling with kids, if you're travelling business related. But in the end, everybody is booking a ticket the same way. So even if you have a lot of data, all data sets look the same. And we started to try out the algorithm, like our algorithms and their database, and then the machine learning expert came to my place. And he said, you know, what the seed set is shit. And I was like, No, this can't be the case. I'm 100% sure the seed set is amazing. It's locked in users, they are verified, so no way. And then I started digging deeper.

And then what we found out is it was simply not working for this particular marketer, because he had a lot of data. But the data was so similar that you could not predict any patterns that made sense. And this was the moment it's already like quite some time ago, when we thought, okay, we need to pivot. You know, we need to, we need to bring those two worlds together. Because publishers are really suffering from, let's say, seats, it's a lot of people are anomalous, a lot of people will never buy a subscription, especially in specific age groups, right? It's a, it's really a bummer. But it's the status quo. And the marketers, sometimes they have a lot of data. But if it's a platform that is not a, I would say, an online store, or if it's not a classifieds side, where you can really see differentiation, and it's going to be hard to use AI. And even the best trend algorithm is not able to do anything that makes sense with this data set. So I think a lot of products failed also because of this missing consultant and dismissing reality check. And that's also why we came up with this connect idea to connect the the strength of two sides to build something new on top of that. And I think that's one of the reasons why consulting is really the differentiator like not just accepting what the AI is telling you, like the data set is shipped but really go there and understand why is this the outcome and what can we do to change it and then be open to pivot and yeah, just go completely change your system towards a new architecture in case it's needed.

Mike: That that's amazing. Because I think, you know, sometimes people think, well, there's some technology, we just apply it, it's gonna work. And, you know, it's great to see that, actually, you do need good data, that's gonna work and you've made the point with, with audiences, the audiences need to look different. If they look the same, then there's nothing to say. So I think that's great. So it's about understanding the data, and that needs experts that needs people to come and provide that consultancy. So I love that as an explanation. That's fantastic. So, I guess if people are excited, they believe that AI absolutely can help them. I mean, how do they get started? You know, is it best to rush in? Should they be talking to a provider? Like you? I mean, how should people start adding AI to their marketing? Do you have any advice for them?

Carolin: Yeah, I think screen what's in the market? Like maybe do some basic checks, like I just told you, like, do you have enough data? Do you how many data sources do you have? How big is your data? Silo right now? Do you think that you alone with your own data will be able to have prediction that makes sense? And if yes, then try out some some some tools. If not, then search for solutions that will help you, for example, that are allowing you to run your own train your algorithms in I don't know better environments for more precise outcomes. Obviously, a cleanroom, I think has a, like the solution like that one that I just explained where publishers and advertisers meet, there's a relatively low entry, because you just need to find one publisher who is open to do it with you, you need to try it out, you will have like one test campaign, you can a B test, do it now, now that you still have a third party cookie just to check if it works, right. Because now you can really do a B testing in terms of performance. Don't shy away the first moment the first campaign might not have the results you were desiring because they're always you need to add optimization, you need to add some more brainpower. But I think it's not so complicated to start, if you are searching for tools that might help you to overcome your personal challenges. And this doesn't, I think that the biggest problem a lot of companies in enterprise have that they think, Oh, I'm building this all on my own. I'm I have such a great tech team, I have such a great Data Silo, I would just build everything in house and then it simply takes too long. So I think here we have again, this, tried to find like an MVP, tried to pivot your ideas and fail but fail fast. I would say this.

Mike: Yeah, I love that. Just give it a go and see what happens. And don't be worried if it doesn't work first time. That's, that's great advice. I mean, obviously, you know, with your product, it's particularly around serving ads and marketing content that way, but how do people really understand that the system is working? So do you integrate with other parts of the marketing technology stack to help people measure performance? Or is it very much an independent product?

Carolin: No, like obviously, you use your data audiences in your in your activation channels, like whatever activation channels you have from obviously from from media buying to email marketing everywhere where you you can utilise that. Furthermore, a lot of our publishers particularly are challenging our machine learning algorithm again, market research panels, and as the third party cookies to their so we're getting challenged a lot against nears and for example. So we are really used to getting this external feedback, and are really proud of us there because, yeah, this is really our bread and butter business. But in general, yes, we are completely integrated in this in this edtech system. We are also completely I think one of the biggest or I say one of the biggest advisors or most important things for tech providers is not to be a standalone solution, right. But to fit in perfectly as a puzzle piece and most of the mahr tech stacks that companies use. And we hopefully we are with our API's and raw data access and all this touristry provide hope that we are fitting seamlessly in most of the martec ecosystems and stacks that the customers are choosing.

Mike: Awesome as that sounds great. That sounds like you've really thought that one through. And this has been fascinating. It's been really interesting. I've actually feel I've learned a lot about AI as well which is great or a lot about what you need to think about when you're using is AI? Is there anything else you think we should have covered in this discussion?

Carolin: Yeah, no, I think we covered it quite well, I think trying it out now, while the third party cookie is still there, to have this ability to see, the potential new world in the still existing world is like, I would say, this is a luxury, we will not have in a couple of months. So I think for the marketers, the, you should now urgently move towards this kind of directions, because you will learn so much, right now. As soon as the third party cookie is gone, we will rely on all those cleanroom solutions matching partners. And that's just maybe too late, right, because you would like to see the before and after effect yourself and your own data. This is one thing. And the second thing is obviously it cleanroom is also dependent on identifiers. And you should invest in ID alliances or check where you can join alliances in general, which IDs you can provide. Because if you have the best data set in the world, if it's not matchable, with anything else, then you will not be able to find your audience even in the most sophisticated publisher embedded space you will find. So that's maybe my second advice, I would say for marketers. Yeah, and then obviously stay open and let the AI do the magic without trying to influence the algorithm with overfitting.

Mike: Trust the technology. This has been brilliant. I mean, I'm sure people would be interested to know more about one plus x and what would be the best way for people to find out more about the product and also contact you if they've got any questions they'd like to to ask you.

Carolin: Yeah, so I think the website is a good starting point, you can always click on book a demo. And depending on what you would like to see, we can do a bit of consulting, or we will show you the platform. So just get I don't know, your our neutral view and things may be in in a little session together with us. If you have specific question to me, you can also find me obviously on LinkedIn. You could also reach us on LinkedIn as a company.

Mike: Awesome. This has been great. I really appreciate it. Carolyn, thank you so much for your time and for being on the podcast. Thanks so much for listening to marketing b2b Tech. We hope you enjoyed the episode. And if you did, please make sure you subscribe on iTunes, or on your favourite podcast application. If you'd like to know more, please visit our website at Napier b2b dot com or contact me directly on LinkedIn.

There's No Excuse For Not Understanding What Your Audience Wants

The Content Amplification Podcast, hosted by Blue Cow Marketing, invited Mike, Managing Director to share his insights on why there's no excuse for not understanding what your audience wants, and how marketers can ensure they are getting it right.

Listen to the full interview here, or via your favourite podcast app, and don’t hesitate to get in touch and let us know your thoughts.

New Conference Introduced for the Embedded Market

Hitex UK has announced the launch of UKEmbedded, a new conference and exhibition for the embedded engineering sector.

Taking place on 12th May 2022 at The Windmill Village Best Western Plus in Coventry, the UKEmbedded event brings together a community of embedded professionals in one place, to explore new ideas and share innovative, technological advances from across the UK.

Working closely with companies such as The Institution of Engineering and Technology, and publications such as new electronics, the show aims to provide a one-day medium-sized technical conference for engineers at all levels of experience.

With the event free to attend (although a charge will incur for attending the workshops), the event will focus on providing a strong conference agenda, supported with an exhibition, workshops and training. Current exhibitors include companies such as Arm, Infineon Technologies, RBV Elektronik and Anglia, whilst speakers include Markt Dunnett from embeddedpro, Helena Dunne from QA Systems and Joseph Yiu from Arm, to name a few.

Mike Beach, MD at Hitex UK, commented "This is a fantastic addition to our smaller, user-group events which Hitex has become well-known for hosting. There are a few large “expo” style events and many smaller one-day technical conferences. The gap between these micro-events and the larger-sized events is wide and has created an opportunity to plug a gap, which I believe we will achieve with this event.”

Hitex UK has clearly taken a specific approach with the development of the UKEmbedded show, choosing to partner with other suppliers, to provide a truly informative and valuable event, which will bring the embedded community together.

For further information about the show, and the full list of exhibitors and speakers, please click here. 

A Napier Podcast: Interview with Alun Lucas - Zuko Analytics

In this podcast episode, we interview Alun Lucas, Managing Director of Zuko Analytics, a powerful form analytics platform.

Alun shares how Zuko helps businesses understand the analytics behind forms, and the why, when and where behind users not converting. He also explains how Zuko works with A/B testing tools to allow businesses to A/B test on a granular level.

Listen to the podcast now via the links below:

Transcript: Interview with Alun Lucas - Zuko Analytics

Speakers: Mike Maynard, Alun Lucas

Mike: Thanks for listening to marketing b2b Tech, the podcast from Napier, where you can find out what really works in b2b marketing today. Welcome to the latest episode of marketing b2b technology, the podcast from Napier. today. I've got Adam Lucas from Zuko analytics. Welcome to the podcast, Alun.

Alun: Hi, Mike. Yes, thanks. Thanks for having me. It's a pleasure and a privilege.

Mike: Great to have you on. So, I mean, before we start, I'd like to know a little bit about your career, you know, looking at your LinkedIn, you've done everything from working in venture capital to you know, a long time ago teaching English. So how did you end up at a company that does form analytics?

Alun: Well, it's an interesting one, because I like to see it at least kind of bringing all the strands of my previous experience together, because I worked for many years in, in advertising, marketing media, and in both London and Manchester, and then I kind of decided to transition from that as you do when you get into your mid to late 30s. So via an MBA and a little stint at Google, I moved into venture capital, investing in digital and creative companies around the northwest of England. From there a car kind of decided that I wanted to get my teeth into something a little bit more. So I moved into tech companies in the Manchester area. So I was working for a couple of those. And then the opportunity came up to run Zuko, which obviously with it, being a Mar tech company, suited me so it brought together the tech, the investment and the marketing piece that I'd done before. So it was kind of perfect for me at the right time as well. So it made sense to hop in and and give it a go.

Mike: It seems like Manchester has got quite a lot of marketing and marketing technology. Businesses sort of popping up is that is that the case?

Alun: Yes, definitely the case Tech Tech is booming here. Obviously text big in London. But in Manchester, we've got a lot of university. So there's a lot of talent that comes out. And a lot of company bigger companies are basing here because obviously some of the costs are much cheaper than than London. I mean, this is pre pandemic. Now obviously a lot of people working remotely anyway, so it doesn't matter quite so much. But But yeah, certainly there's a thriving tech scene here

Mike: It’s cool. It's good to hear there's there's a lot going on outside of London indeed. So you joined Zuko, but previously the company was called for mismo. So why the rebrand from a moment kind of said a little bit about what you did to something was more abstract.

Alun: It's a it's kind of a funny one. And then a lot of this is kind of predates myself but but in terms of the story, obviously we were founded as for Massimo to you know we we look and optimise forms on websites. So for me sumo kind of does what it says on the tin. We created a second generation product, which was aimed at the enterprise market. And so we were running the form smo products and the second product, which we christened Zuko Zico by for mizzima. But then I think he quickly became apparent that Zuko is so superior in every way than the original product. So why are we limiting it just enterprise clients. So Zuko then became available to all our clients. And we slowly deprecated the for mismo platform. So it kind of came partially by accident, partially by design, I think there were issues around with the name in terms of spelling pronunciation. People not finding it when they were searching for it. So there's issues there. So the team decided to go for something short, simple, memorable, Zuko it's it's hard to miss miss Christmas mispronounce Now obviously, there's a debate to be had to know is that the best way to represent our brand in terms of you know, what does the code do? Also, there's a there's an anime character called Zico, which kind of messes with our SEO as well. But we kind of are where we are at the moment not going to we, the company still is formisano to HMRC and to the accountants and to the lawyers, but we decided okay, rather than try and say Zico by for mismo, let's just be Zucco to our customers, just keep it simple. And so that convoluted story is kind of what we are where we are, as many companies kind of find themselves

Mike: it's certainly easier to spell I'll say that and it's great to hear it's great to hear a story of you know, you build a second product and he was actually so good at killed the first one and for a company to have the confidence to let that happen, I think is really good.

Alun: Yeah, yeah, no, I think that's kind of the The way it evolved, I guess it didn't start that way. But you know, rather than having two sets of tax support, and you know, two sets of instructions, stick with one.

Mike: Awesome. So, I mean, let's get into it. So you do analytics about forms? What does that mean? What does that actually do for people?

Alun: So sort of our goal, essentially, is to make the web less frustrating, one for one for my time. And so, for me, Sumo was founded because of frustration with online forms, I think we've all been to web forms and had a horrible experience, you know, you know, error messages, crashes, unclear instructions, particularly when you're using mobile phones. So there's a lot of potential to get it wrong. So sukkos say mission was based on that? How can we make things better for businesses for consumers? ourselves, so So the form analytics platform was built, obviously, for Missamma, which became Zuko just to make it easy for businesses to to identify the when the where and the why their users are dropping off. And so these are people who want to buy from you, but because of a crappy form, they're not buying. So actually, if you can, if you can solve that it's better for businesses, it's better for consumers, it's better for everyone. So that's kind of where we're at. So the analytics piece is, is the data around that. So as I said, the when the where, and the why, okay, identifying where the problems are, what the problems might be, and then providing potential solutions to fix it.

Mike: It's interesting, I mean, sounds very broad. But you mentioned that, you know, mobile is a particular problem. Is there an industry that suffers most from the problem of people dropping off halfway through a form fail? Or, you know, what pulls together the companies that have the biggest issues?

Alun: Well, I mean, I suppose it's, it's any, any company in any sector can have an issue, because obviously can have a bad fall. But in terms of ourselves, you know, there's, there's kind of three factors that drive the whether people can get value out of Zucco. One is the complexity of the form. So if you just got a contact form with three fields, well, you can still mess that up. But it's probably pretty easy to diagnose. And whereas if you've got a long complicated form, with 40 questions, over three or four pages, well, there's more opportunity to mess things up. So obviously, the more questions the more complex the questions, the more likely you are to need a product like Zuko the next two around the economics. So firstly, that the cost of customer acquisition, how, how expensive is it for you to acquire a customer, and also the customer lifetime value? You know, how valuable are they, because obviously, that determines if you invest time, in optimising your forms, you're going to get a much better return on investment. So obviously, if you if you're selling Ferraris, whatever they go for now, say 100 grand, you obviously, you your potential lifetime value is, is higher than the smaller product. And so they tend to be our clients tend to fall, have a combination of those, those three factors, ideally, all three. And so it's probably no surprise to know that basically, our biggest customer sector, by a reasonable chalk is financial services. You know, they credit cards, banks, insurance, foreign exchange, they're asking, you know, complex questions sometimes because they have to, because of regulations sometimes because they just do when they shouldn't, and so that they're messing things up, but obviously, they've also got a high customer lifetime value. So to say that they're our biggest sector, we also have, you know, every sector to be honest, but you know, other big clusters are around ecommerce, you know, the checkout getting that, right? And education, surprisingly, but, actually, is because they have complex forms, they ask lots of questions. So a lot of universities across the world users. And then online gaming, which is one that you might be surprised on, because actually a lot of their forms are relatively simple, unless there's a regulatory aspect to it. But they tend to be sort of really up on returns because they, you know, they know how valuable each player is. So they'll invest in getting it right, cuz, you know, even a half percent improvement can mean a lot of money to some of these guys.

Mike: But that's really interesting. So, I mean, the thing the thing everyone's taught, you know, when they first do online forums is the shorter, the better. And you mentioned that, obviously, some industries have to ask more questions, but some industries choose to, is it actually true, the shorter the better or can sometimes a longer form work better? Well,

Alun: yes and no, I guess The question depends what you got to think about is the motivation. So I'll give you an example. So we have an It's on our website, we benchmark across a number of number of sectors. And I think the best performing conversion rates for any sector is local government. But they have the largest number of fields on their forms. See, like, what's going on there. But actually, it's more than motivation, because they are. They have a monopoly on their services. So people slog through these forms and complete it, and they have really high completion rates. So it's kind of it's not an absolute rule, you shouldn't really be unser asking things that you don't necessarily need at this stage. But it's not. It's not always the killer that you think it might be. And you've just got, you've got to be careful. So just, you know, typically we advise, okay, what what do you need? Now, don't be afraid to ask him because sometimes, and again, it varies by sector and form purpose, some some forms, if you don't ask a question, then actually people get nervous. You know, particularly in financing, he might, he may, you may have to have to ask qualifying questions. But if it's just too simple the form then people like, well, hang on, you know, you know, are you serious? But in general, just in general, yes. strip out any fields you don't need. But it's not an absolute.

Mike: I mean, that's interesting. So what causes people to stop filling out a form? I mean, it's obviously not just boredom and the number of fields. I mean, there are some things that you can make mistakes on, that are relatively easy to fix.

Alun: Well, yeah, I mean, there's there's a lower level things which we might get into talking about, but there's probably sort of three high level areas where people go wrong, or businesses go wrong, and mess things up. The first one, probably the most common and the most visible, the most frustrating is user issues, or user experience issues. And this is frustration with the form itself. So you may have bad validation. The classic example is phone number, you put a phone number field in there, do I put the zero? Do I put the plus four four? Do I spaces dashes? No, what happens? And you know, you're causing issues for that you don't need to cause that's, that's the classic example. But there's, there's hundreds of different ways of doing it, you know, bad error messages, taking people all over the thing. So that's the form design itself. So that's area one, the second area is around is around the questions. So not so much in terms of the length that we talked about previously, but actually asking things people don't want to answer at this stage.

So an example being if you're looking for an insurance quote, so you're doing you're shopping around for insurance. What you find is if and this is an exception to the normal rules with forms where you do easy questions first and bring in slowly get people into the form. Well, if you're if you've got an insurance form, you don't want to be asking for their personal details up front, you want to go in take the broad details, you know what type of car you know what type of home insurance you want, so they can get the quotes. And they don't want to give you the personal details. If he asked for the personal details early, you'll see a big abandonment rate, which isn't the case in other types of forms. Because people have started on the journey, so it's questions they don't want to answer. And then that's the class just the classic example. Sometimes you're asking for the other example I always give for this is ecommerce. Ecommerce sites often ask for a phone number, why you asked him for my phone number, you know, you have my address, you have all my credit card details, you've got my email, if there's a problem, I'm not going to give you my phone number. You see people drop off that all the time. So but that that falls within their category, and then kind of the third areas around the area of expectation, money management. So which is about the form taking too long? Someone thinks it's a short form. And before you know it, there's no progress bar, and then how long or long is this going to take and they drop out? Or you're asking for things? They don't have to hand a driver's licence a passport, we never told me I needed this. So you know, if you're not managing expectations up front, that's one of the broader reasons why white people drop out, if that makes sense.

Mike: I mean, that's interesting. I guess from a cynical point of view, I could say, well, can people find this out simply by AV testing forms? Isn't it a fairly simple thing? Because a lot of these things, if you like negotiable or their order things, you know, they're fairly easy to test. What Why don't people do that through conventional form tools?

Alun: Well, I think there's a broader question there about experimentation and AV testing. I think the issue often with with businesses and forms is you think it should be simple, so therefore simple, they spend a lot of time around the broad the sexiest You know, the website, you know, the marketing to get people to the website. And then you know, when it comes to the shop, and they don't spend nearly as much time money resource attention, it's just like, well, how difficult is it to fill out a form. And as I say, typically, that's not the you know, the guys in the marketing department, that's not particularly sexy for them. Often, you know, the the main, the main not even be a single individual who's responsible for the form, you might fall in between the web guys and it guys, marketing digital, depending on how the company is structured. So that that's kind of often why people don't do it. But you know, to go back to your question, a B testing, absolutely, that's something you can and should do in the way we tend to advise clients is the first thing is find out the big issues.

So look at the data, see the things just fix it, you know, there's a, there's a massive drop off in this field, you know, why it's broken? You can you can change that. Or maybe you can a be tested if if you want to as well. But once you fix all the big things, it's okay, Where's, where's the next 1% coming from? And that's where you do your A B test and refine maybe if we change the error message or the validation a particular field or drop a question or change the order. That's where you can do that. And Zuko integrates with, with a lot of AV testing tools like Google optimise Optimizely converts, to allow you to do that on a granular level. So rather than it just being a black box, so knowing how many people reach a form, and how many people drop out the bottom, which is what a lot of companies now it's actually what is happening in the form, how are people flowing through your form? Where are they struggling, where they having to go back to make corrections, that sort of thing. And you can you can get the data and also push it pull your AB test variants into a tool such as ICA.

Mike: That's really interesting. I'm presuming you're giving. You're giving marketers, you know, extra information, like how long it takes to fill out each field? Is that the kind of information that they're using and working out? What slow someone down? Yeah, exactly.

Alun: So yeah, that's where people go back to correct it, whether they drop off at a particular piece, what happens after the submit button? You know, because that's often one piece of advice that we often give is, okay, what happens? Your low hanging fruit, other people who've spent a lot of time filling out your form, and then they click Submit, and they've still not successfully completed what's happened there. Most likely, there'll be one body with red light of error messages. And I'm running away from this. So you can find out exactly what's going on, which are the problem fields, those sort of things that you fix it so they don't have that issue.

Mike: Interesting. That's really cool. So I mean, I think the thing everyone wants to know is, if you use a tool, like Zuko, and you really optimise your form, what sort of improvement do people see typically?

Alun: Well, at the risk of doing the old, it depends answer. It does depend on how bad your form is in the first place. And so, you know, we have doubled conversion rates in some cases, from 30 to 60%. But typically, we aim for a 10 to 20% uplift in the volume of conversions at the same traffic levels. And that's what we will typically aim for as a as a, you know, a reasonable case scenario, sometimes the form is really good, and it might be a little lower. Sometimes it's, you know, there's some obvious issues that you can fix and get a better return. So but we say between 10 and 20%, that's kind of where we pitch in where our goal tends to be when we when a new client comes on board.

Mike: So that's a significant impact on overall campaign performance. I mean, adding 10% more visitors can be quite expensive.

Alun: Yeah, exactly. And it's, you know, something you've got control over. You can do it relatively easily when you fall, you know, having to go out and do a marketing message to convince them.

Mike: So, I mean, it sounds it sounds like a very easy sell. I mean, how many forms do people use Zuko typically have they typically uses a large number of forms, they try and optimise or they focus around one that really matters.

Alun: We have a broad gamut. So we have clients such as Capital One or credit card form, and they've gotten dozens of them. We've also got people who've just got the one form isn't ecommerce checkout, that's that the be all end all. So I'd probably say it's a roughly 5050 between people who are one, maybe two forms, and then we've got portfolio forms that they want to do, but often people will try it on water and then roll it out across other forms.

Mike: Interesting, and typically, what are people using to generate this form? So you're having to integrate to other marketing technology tools, or is it more custom coded applications had had had your customers normally work?

Alun: Most of the time they build the form themselves with HTML using standard form elements. That's the majority there are some that have off the shelf pieces like WordPress or HubSpot, or you know we have direct integrations with with suppliers jot form. Because if you take the form and put it in an iframe, then we need to have an integration. But most of the time you work straight out of the box, you just put a couple of pieces of code on your, on your form using a contact manager or whatever. And Zuko does the rest.

Mike: It sounds it sounds pretty straightforward. You mentioned earlier though, there were some more in depth technical issues, rather than the form structure issues that can cause problems. Do you want to talk a little bit about, you know, what are maybe some of those second level gotchas.

Alun: So then we will ask kind of the details, as it were the devils in the details, and I suppose a slight plug a we do have a lot of content on our website, and a full eBook Guide, which breaks down loads and loads of those. So, you know, there's lots of things about how do you optimise an email field or Name field or, or, you know, the common stuff, which we can go there. But I suppose in terms of actually, I suppose I'll flip it slightly, I'll talk about what we see as having the biggest impact, typically. Because that doesn't, there's lots of lots of potential issues. And you can you can see that in our ebook, but in terms of what we see is the biggest inputs, there's probably two things. One thing which I mentioned earlier, so I won't dwell too much is focusing around the submit button, looking at the data around what happens to these guys who just want to buy and they can't. So you know, we have specific reports that show you, okay, they're clicking Submit, and then they migrating immediately to this field.

And so actually, if you, if you look at that, that's where you get your quickest insights, and you find your your problem fields quickest. So that's sort of one, one area where then I suppose the second area is around validation. So when I say validation, that's when someone enters an input, and then you check whether it's an error message on to generate an error message, or if it's okay, or what have you. The biggest uplift we consistently see on forms is when they implement what's called inline validation. And what that essentially is, when you type in your answer to a form, you get the answer whether the input is correct, as soon as you move to the next field, though you put in your email address, and you miss out the act, tells you straightaway, doesn't wait to the click Submit, and then you get 10 or 20 error messages across the whole form. You know, that's, that's a big cortisol stress driver, and causes people to drop out. So yeah, if we see no 20, you know, there's a famous study that showed about 22% uplift from implementing inline validation on average. And we kind of see that as well, when we see it. It's such a big thing, if you think about when you fill out a form, so much less stressful. If you type it out. You obviously don't want to generate the error messages too soon. If you do too early people, you know, gets frustrating, because you just started typing, you get an error message someone, but when you move on to the next field, okay, you've you've done that. And then you get you either get told in a helpful way, helpful error message, okay, you know, you've missed out the app, you probably want to add that in, or you get a nice green tick. Yeah, that's, that's the thing more than any, any other that consistently delivers gains across all types of forms.

Mike: That's such great advice. And I think everybody's, you know, filled in a form and then got an error message, you know, half a page or a couple of scrolls back up. There's an obvious error and obvious typos. It's so frustrating that goes back to the top, find out where the error is, and then scroll down and submit again, so I can understand why that makes such a difference. Yeah, absolutely. So um, one of the things you've talked about earlier was the fact that Zuko initially started out as being a product design for enterprise and now as your effect for your your main product. So I'm just intrigued to know, you know, how expensive is it to get this kind of technology that's, that's watching people filling in forms and actually analyse is where they, they have issues.

Alun: Yeah. So we say we've structured it, so it's accessible or price points. And so the way we charge is around the number of form sessions trapped. So that's an individual going into a form, how long they spend on the form. And so it's based on that so it's based on how much traffic you essentially get to your form. So our lowest level packages is 100 pounds a month to track 10,000 form sessions, and all our subscription packages, you can turn off and on and on a monthly basis. So you have full flexibility of when you do we obviously we do have Enterprise packages still which you know, have a longer commitment, but obviously have a much lower unit price for each session track. Because in return for the volume commitment, but it's a it's it's flexible and it's affordable for, for businesses of any size, at least that's what it's designed to be.

Mike: Yeah, and you obviously don't need a huge lifetime customer value to, you know, have attempted increase in formfields. If you're, you're only paying 100 pounds for 10,000 form sessions, or sounds like that could be easy, positive ROI. Yeah,

Alun: that's definitely the main, the main thing is always is the will internal will to do something with the data. That's always the tricky bit with any with any analytics product is like, you find what's wrong, then you've got to fix it. And then you've got to prove that you've had an impact. And so it's not it's not difficult. But as we know, with companies often, you've got to get your request into whoever's looking after the form technically, and change it and spend a little bit of time analysing the data. But we do have a customer success team as well who know all I do is look at forms. So they see the common common strains of issues and can kind of get to the answer. Quickly.

Mike: You said something really quite interesting early on that there doesn't tend to be someone who's responsible for forms. And yet forms are typically the conversion point, the moment of truth is when you capture a customer or prospect. I mean, why do you think forms? I think, as you put it, where were unsexy compared to other elements of marketing?

Alun: Well, I think it's partially, you know, it is partially legacy of the offline world, you know, who likes forms. We know old days, when you got a piece of paper, I think we're both old enough to remember you got a piece of paper to fill out in triplicate and photocopy and you have to fill out I mean, it's just horrible, isn't it? And that's kind of translated, that approach has translated to the online world, and no one really wants it Okay, as it's just, you know, because in theory should be easy, you're filling out a piece of paper with your details. So I think, you know, there's, there's not many of us who are really getting into forms, and you know, that people in conversion rate optimization and experimentation of kind of love forms, or they, you know, they use it as part of their broader portfolio sale. But generally, if you're, you know, if you go to all the marketing courses in the universities, or were online or wherever, no one talks about forms, in it's a very direct response type piece, you know, again, some people but he to get me, at the higher levels of any company, getting marketing at the top table is often difficult, let alone a Nishat marketing, even though it affects your bottom line, you know, hugely so I think it's kind of it's kind of just not he's never, never managed to get it put his head above the parapet as a nice, interesting, sexy thing for people to go into. No one comes out of university. So I wanted to, I just want to do forms.

Mike: Although maybe they should, if they can make such an impact on the bottom line. That really should be the future. I remember doing an MBA and our finance lecturer said, he said, You all want to go into management, consulting and things. He said, Don't do that. There's so many people are smarter than your management consulting, you'll be average at best said, open a laundrette you'll be really smart as a laundrette over, and I think it's the same with forms, you know, do something around forms, you could be really smart, and in an area that can make a huge difference. Yeah, exactly.

Alun: And that's our goal, because they ZICO is the only specialist form analytics player out there, there are sort of brought it UX software suites out there that use forms as a bolt on, but because that's all we do, we specialise in having the most in depth reports, and obviously, the most knowledgeable team in the area. So you know, that's, that's the way we position ourselves.

Mike: I mean, that's been fascinating. Is there anything else, you know, we should be talking about in terms of forms or Zuko?

Alun: I know really covered a lot of it. I mean, we, as well as being a SaaS provider. Suppose we also offer consultancy, and we have our customer success team, which means we help all our clients out with the forms, but some, some of them like well just tell us the answer. You know, we want a written report, we want to tell us what to do. So we also kind of we do offer that as well, because it kind of is a natural extension of the service for people who have less time to sort of get to the answer. But, you know, that's not not that's not necessary, because we say we have a customer success team that can help you out. So that's probably the only thing we're not covered to say. I would recommend to go on the website. There's lots of lots of content in the blog, there's white paper, we've just launched on financial forms, but we've got a big guy with general advice for all forms as well. So even if you just look at those, you'll probably improve your forms just by reading it. And even without using Zico, so yeah, that's probably all I've got to add to that really

Mike: great. So people want to You know, get the data. I mean, can you just confirm the website address? And maybe if somebody wanted to get in contact with you, what would be the best way to ask you a question about forms?

Alun: Yeah, so And if you want to contact me, you can get me on LinkedIn is Alan al un Lucas. We can email me ln at Z Coda IO. Or you can just email And one of the team will pick it up if you've got a general question as well. So more than happy to take questions for anyone who is interested in improving forms as much as we are.

Mike: That sounds great. And it does sound like some people do come out of university and want to be world experts in forms. But it sounds like Zuko is probably snapped them all up already. So anyway, thank you so much for being on the podcast. Alan, I really appreciate it. It's been fascinating. And hopefully people go away, you know, download the eBook from and maybe try using some analytics on their forms and see if they can improve the conversion rate.

Alun: Yeah, no, that would be great.

Mike: Thanks very much.

Alun: Thank you very much. It's been a pleasure.

Mike: Thanks so much for listening to marketing b2b Tech. We hope you enjoyed the episode. And if you did, please make sure you subscribe on iTunes, or on your favourite podcast application. If you'd like to know more, please visit our website at Napier b2b dot com or contact me directly on LinkedIn.

Vehicle Electronics Celebrates its 100th Issue

Congratulations to Vehicle Electronics which will celebrate its 100th issue in April.

Vehicle Electronics released its pilot issue on the 20th of December 2013, and quickly became a well-known name within the industry, providing a free copy of its magazine monthly to automotive electronics engineers.

Congratulations to the whole Vehicle Electronics team.

B2B Digital Marketing Strategy: Impact of Privacy Laws and a Remote Workforce

Mike, Managing Director at Napier, sat down with Camela Thompson, host of the CaliberMind podcast. Mike discusses his insights on the right digital marketing strategies, the benefits of direct mail, and what marketers need to consider about GDPR.

Listen to the full interview here, or via your favourite podcast app, and don’t hesitate to get in touch and let us know your thoughts.