Trending February 2024 # Customers Growing More Frustrated At Inability To Get Answers From Brands # Suggested March 2024 # Top 6 Popular

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Chart of the Week: 34% of customers are frustrated at not being able to find answers to simple questions. Could updated customer service channels help?

As it becomes easier to find information and make purchases, customers are becoming increasingly impatient. Brands need to ensure they are reducing this frustration by offering the highest possible level of service.

However, now that there are so many channels that customers can interact with you, this is more difficult than ever. Brands need to ensure they are making the purchase journey simple and engaging, providing all the relevant information in an easy-to-find way and communicating with customers across all the channels their audience uses.

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Failing on any one of these fronts can mean you lose customers, develop a poor reputation and see your profit margins shrink. This is why it’s vital to understand exactly where your customers’ frustrations lie and put strategies in place to address them.

Customer frustrations are growing

According to the 2023 State of Conversational Marketing report from Drift and Survey Monkey, there are now a lot of frustrations to deal with, as between 2023 and 2023, customers grew increasingly annoyed at not being able to get the answers they needed and not having access to 24/7 service.

While other frustrations have become less frequent, 30% of survey respondents still say that they have experienced hard-to-navigate sites. Although this is down from 34% in 2023, it shows that a lot still needs to be done to make sites easier to use, especially in terms of providing information.

Other frustrations regularly experienced by customers include business basic details being hard to find (25%), poorly designed smartphone apps (23%), search options on a brand’s website not being useful (21%), services not being accessible on mobile devices (19%) and services that feel impersonal (17%).

Email is still top for customer communications

 One likely cause for frustration when customers are contacting companies is likely due to the fact that email communications can take 24 to 48 hours to get a response, with 65% of survey respondents saying they have communicated with organizations via email in the last 12 months, it goes to show that email customer service is still an important resource.

This suggests that brands can still benefit from reducing the wait time for responses to email queries or complaints in order to reduce customer frustration. The same can be said for phone communications, as 55% of consumers have contacted companies via telephone in the last year.

While these two more traditional contact methods are still popular, customers are increasingly turning to other avenues in order to contact organizations. For example, the third most popular option was a website (42%), which is likely why the inability to find the required information via a business website causes so many problems.

However, online chat is also being used, with a third (33%) of respondents saying they have used it in the last 12 months to contact a company. In fact, those under the age of 55 have, on average, used online chat more in the last 12 months, with those aged between 25 and 34 seeing the biggest increase in usage.

Social media is also being used by 28% of consumers, showing that companies need to incorporate customer service into their social media strategies, as social media channels are no longer just about raising brand awareness.

Online chat is the most convenient contact method

Online chat can be seen as an easier option to email and a quicker, more convenient channel compared to the telephone. Customers can chat on the go or while completing other tasks, with chatbots enabling chats to take place out of office hours. 

This is likely why half (50%) of respondents said that convenience is a benefit they strongly associate with online chat. It also scored highly when it came to ease of communication and a good customer experience, beaten only by telephone when it came to the expectation of receiving these benefits.

Over 30% of respondents also said that there is an expectation of receiving 24-hour service via chatbots, which is the only benefit that it largely outscored telephone on. This is likely due to the fact that many people are unaware that they may be speaking to chatbots when using online chat out of business hours.

It is also worth noting that while well over 40% of respondents said that email was a convenient method of communication, just over 20% said it offered a good customer service and under 20% said that it allowed them to get quick answers to simple questions. This reiterates the fact that companies need to look at how they are dealing with customer emails.

Chatbots and customer service

Despite the fact that chatbots can deliver around the clock service, they are seen as being less convenient than online chat with a human (42% versus 50%). Coupled with the fact that only 25% of respondents associate ease of communication with chatbots (compared to 40% when it comes to online chat), this suggests that there is still some work to do on the implementation of chatbots as a form of customer service.

Online chat with a human still largely outscores chatbots in terms of perceived benefits, with only 24-hour service receiving a higher score. Despite this, people expect to receive nearly identical response times from a chatbot as they do with a face-to-face conversation, showing that consumers have high expectations.

Some 42% of consumers expect an immediate chatbot response, while 36% expect a response within five minutes or less. When you compare this to web forms, which are responded to via email, and email, the difference is huge. Just 11% expect immediate responses from web forms and 7% via email.

When you factor in the expectations of 24-hour service and fast response, it does leave you to wonder why 79% of Cloud 100 companies are using online forms as a contact method rather than chatbots. Never mind the fact that only 14% of people say they’d rather fill out an online form than use a chatbot.

On top of this, people are becoming more comfortable with communicating with a chatbot rather than a person. While 43% of respondents in 2023 said they would prefer to interact with a human, this dropped to 38% this year. 

Final thoughts

While it is impossible to keep every customer happy 100% of the time, there is plenty that brands can do to reduce issues as much as possible. Addressing common areas of frustration is a good place to start and can ultimately lead to a better customer experience.

Ensuring your website is suitable for those consumers who prefer a self-serve approach is one step you should take. Looking at what information is missing from your website, how you can present it in an easy-to-follow format and the journey a customer needs to take to find the information will ensure that it is simpler for people to get answers to their questions quickly.

You should also consider the customer service channels you use and how you can optimize response times. Is email the only contact option you offer? Take a look at incorporating online chat and chatbots in order to make customer service more convenient.

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Brand Strategy Marketing Training To Win More Customers

A successful brand strategy means your business’ channels, digital experiences, and tone of voice need to home in on what your key customers want.

We’ve got marketing training to strengthen your branded consumer goods company’s relationships with your target audiences.

In order to build a loyal fan base, your brand strategy and style need to reflect your overall vision for the business. Having a brand strategy that jars with your product/service will put customers off and confuse them about who are and what you offer.

However, integrating your marketing strategy can be hard, especially today in the age of digital disruption where every customer has an omnichannel experience. That’s why our complete marketing training covers all the key elements you need to build a strong brand strategy.

The RACE Framework for consumer branded goods

Our popular RACE Framework is a simple, actionable planning structure for marketing leaders looking to streamline their omnichannel marketing strategies and tactics, in a data-driven, customer-centric approach to strategic marketing.

With the RACE Framework, consumer branded goods marketers can plan, manage and optimize their marketing activities across the customer journey touchpoints of reach, act, convert and engage.

Since all our marketing training is integrated across the RACE Framework, Smart Insights members and their teams can confidently apply marketing tools and templates to optimize their key channels and platforms to optimize their customers’ journeys.

Set goals and objectives

Setting clear marketing goals and objectives for your brand strategy will help you get buy-in from colleagues and brief agencies better.

It will also give you and them more confidence that you can achieve your targets by putting in place the right marketing activities to deliver them.

You can use marketing goals and objectives for both specific campaigns and longer-term ‘always-on’ digital marketing activities like organic or paid search marketing that are run continuously.

Why does a brand strategy need clear marketing objectives?

In this interview from Think With Google on ‘why clarity on marketing objectives is critical’, Google’s Global VP of Ads Marketing Marie Gulin-Merle talks to Jason Spero, VP of Global Performance Solutions at Google, about the challenges faced by brands today.

They discuss how marketers can navigate increasing complexity with a clear focus on their brand’s objectives.



Within digital marketing, there is often a focus on the volume of response but not the quality, value, and cost of response.

For meaningful use of data to inform your brand strategy, it’s essential to go beyond volume measures to understand the quality of traffic on the site and whether visitors have engaged.

Brand strategy objectives example

Our VQVC template, from our ‘set goals and objectives’ module in the RACE Practical Digital Strategy Learning Path, defines four types of measures that you should define when goal setting for your brand:

Volume

Quality

Value

Cost

Can your branded consumer goods business compete online?

With so much competition, you need to stand out

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Persona definition

Personas offer brands of all sizes an opportunity to create more effective, customer-centric communications. Our brief definition of a persona, coined by Dr. Dave Chaffey is:

“A summary of the characteristics, needs, motivations, environment and behavior of typical distinct audience types”.

Foviance/EY Seren define a persona as:

“A fictional character that communicates the primary characteristics of a group of users, identified and selected as a key target through use of segmentation data, across the company in a usable and effective manner.”

The key thing to remember when defining personas for consumer branded goods, is these personas need to sit at the center of every decision you make about the brand strategy going forward.

We recommend using between two and six main personas, which are carefully researched and representative, to provide the best balance and focus for your brand strategy.

Beyond just simple demographics, the templates we have created for Smart Insights members enables you to consider:

Motivations/goals

Buying decision behaviors

Platform usage

Customer journey mapping

Can your branded consumer goods business compete online?

With so much competition, you need to stand out

Get started now

Persona example

Our practical, editable marketing templates support brand marketers and managers through the step-by-step process of researching and creating personas to support your brand strategy. Here’s the beginning of one of our example personas, young Jordan Clarke the ‘trendster’!

Why does a brand strategy need personas?

If you’re still not convinced, here are 4 reasons why your brand strategy will benefit from persona implementation:

Objective rather than subjective direction

Increase conversion of key audience

Optimize site and experience to meet customer needs

Encourages more targeted media spend and integration

We’ve got marketing training to support you and your team in developing and implementing market research to inform your brand strategy. Not just personas, we have resources for SWOT analysis, competitor benchmarking, segmenting, targeting and positioning, and more.

Can your branded consumer goods business compete online?

With so much competition, you need to stand out

Get started now

Planning acquisition and budget

No matter how marketing techniques change over time, every company must remain focused on this simple fact: customers are the lifeblood of business.

Creating and growing demand for your brand requires a constant focus on the fundamentals – finding the best marketing mix to effectively communicate value and target the right audiences in the right way in the right place at the right time.

Your budget for customer acquisition will include a mix of paid, earned, and owned media, sometimes including offline experiences as well as digital. It’s crucial for brand strategists to consider the customer journey when planning marketing channels and managing landing pages to optimize website journeys.

Customer acquisition plan

The map below, from our ‘define acquisition plan and budget’ module in the RACE Practical Digital Strategy Learning Path, demonstrates the average monthly customer flow for loan products by channel.

In this case, both online and offline touchpoints are crucial in the customer journey. This means multichannel journey tracking has implications for acquisition budgeting too.

Customer acquisition budget

Our tried-and-tested 4 stage acquisition budget helps brand managers plan and forecast their ROI. Briefly, each stage consists of the following:

Enter revenue targets and calculate traffic and conversion targets

Apportion your marketing channels’ contributions to targets

Allocate financial (and staff) resources to support the above activities

Map customer acquisition and tweak your plan and budget if needs be

Brand strategy planning framework

Finally, it goes without saying that without a dedicated brand strategy planning framework, it will be very difficult to effectively manage your brand’s acquisition strategy. That’s where the RACE Framework comes in.

Our 16 Best Home Services Marketing Tips To Get New Customers

For home services professionals, competition can be stiff. There are a lot of providers out there, and it can be hard to figure out the best way to stand out. Plus, the way homeowners think about and search for home repair and home remodeling solutions has changed over the last decade, so it’s important that home services companies, like plumbers, roofers, general contractors, home cleaners, and more learn how to capture the attention of today’s modern consumers.

That means that in order to market your home services business effectively, there are many different factors (and marketing channels!) to consider.

That’s a lot of places people are looking for businesses like yours!

16 best home services marketing tips

Let’s walk through each home services marketing tip in detail:

1. Invest in local SEO

Internet searches are the top way homeowners are finding a home services provider, according to our national home improvement consumer study. And, when searching for home service professionals on search engines, consumers are usually taking a local approach.

Searches with phrases like “electrician near me” are a regular occurrence. After all, an electrician five states over is not going to do you any good! That’s why it’s critical for home services professionals to have a presence in local search results.

This means that your home services marketing must include a local SEO, or search engine optimization, strategy that helps you get found in search results when potential customers are looking for your services in your area.

These businesses show in organic search results for “roof repair oklahoma city.”

Local SEO is just SEO that optimizes your website and online presence for local searches. This includes adding location-specific keywords to your website, optimizing your web content for the right keywords for your services, and managing your offsite local listings (which we’ll talk about more in a bit!).

Related: Get the steps for how to do local keyword research.

4. Use video to up your game

There’s no question that video marketing delivers messages more effectively in a shorter amount of time.

Consider these stats:

Video watchers retain 95% of a message compared to 10% for those who read text.

These stats illustrate why adding video to your home services marketing mix can help you reach and convert more consumers.

Related: Get YouTube video ideas that will work for your business.

5. Boost your home services business with better reviews

Getting your business found is only half the battle. According to our home services study, 70% of homeowners rely on recommendations from family or at least one review site. Plus, research has found that nearly 90% of consumers trust online reviews.

In other words, once a potential customer knows about you, you then need to convince them that your company is better than the competition–or you won’t be on their shortlist of who to call. As a home services business, your job goes beyond promoting your business to new customers, it’s also about getting existing or former customers to publicly sing their praises about your company.

You can encourage happy customers to leave reviews for your home services business on relevant review sites like Google Business, Yelp, and Angi. And, make sure you’re responding to reviews so happy (and potentially unhappy) customers know you’re reading and considering their feedback.

6. Build a user-friendly website

See more of the best plumbing website examples here.

You also want to make sure your site is clearly laid out and that your contact information is front and center. You’d be surprised by the number of home services businesses that hide their address and phone number away on their site. Instead, make sure that your contact details are in the header or footer of every page, so someone who’s looking for home services help in a rush doesn’t have any trouble getting in touch!

7. Add live chat to your website

One way to take your website to the next level is to add live chat. Live chat can help you quickly answer questions, provide details, and collect lead information so you’re able to provide a positive user experience for potential and existing clients on your website.

People prefer to use chat and messaging rather than calling a business, so if you provide live chat as an opportunity for them to reach out, you have a higher chance of converting them into a customer.

Source

8. Manage your business listings

For home services businesses, business listings are extremely important. Not only do they help you get seen on search engines and help your local SEO, but they also provide an additional place to collect and manage your reviews.

Start by claiming your Google Business Profile so that you appear in Maps results and have a shot at getting featured in organic search results as well as the Google 3-pack. Business listings can be tricky for home services providers–especially when you don’t have a specific business address. So it’s important to include the most accurate service area for your business to increase your chances of showing up on Google for local searches.

Sites like Yelp, Angi, and others are places where consumers turn for assistance in finding local home services providers, so you want to make sure your business is listed in these places as well.

It’s also important that your home services business information is listed accurately and consistently in local listings to provide a positive customer experience and because consistency is an important ranking factor for your local SEO. Google looks at your business information across the web to determine the trustworthiness of the information they can find about you–the more sites have consistent information, the more credible Google finds said information, which, in turn, can give you a boost in search results.

9. Don’t underestimate the power of referrals

Referrals are a great asset for any business but can be especially powerful in the home services industry. Customers are looking for a business they can trust that they know will perform the work correctly, so many turn to friends and family for suggestions. We shared this stat earlier, but it’s worth repeating here: 70% of homeowners rely on recommendations from family.

You want to be that recommendation. This means that you need to incorporate asking for referrals into your home services marketing.

We detailed how to ask for referrals here.

10. Encourage Nextdoor recommendations

Nextdoor is a website (with an app) where people can connect with their neighbors, share items for sale (like Facebook Marketplace), and, lucky for you, ask for recommendations for home services professionals. This is a great way for people to discover your business from clients who have been happy with your work in the past.

First, you’ll first want to claim your business page on the app. Anyone can mention your business regardless of if you’ve claimed your business page, but this will give you more control over what people see about your business.

Then, you’ll want to ask your happy clients to mention you on Nextdoor and make sure you’re always providing the best possible service to increase your chances of getting mentioned!

For most homeowners looking for help from home services professionals, time is of the essence. You’re generally calling a plumber with an emergency need, not something that can wait a few weeks. In fact, our home services study found that 93% of homeowners get a fix in less than one week. No wonder research shows that 50% of consumers will do business with the company that responds to them first.

12. Focus on delivering great customer service

Once you’ve gotten noticed and made contact with your prospects, you want to be sure you follow through and deliver stellar customer service. From arriving on time to the job site to speedy and seamless invoicing, being on top of your game every step of the way helps you impress customers and develop a long-term, loyal relationship.

Great customer service can help you get repeat customers and good online reviews–plus it can encourage referrals, which are all key components for a great home services marketing strategy.

When you run a home service business, beating out the competition is all about getting seen first and staying in close communication throughout the customer journey. If you can do that, you can set yourself apart from other businesses that struggle to manage their communications.

This moving company sends a regular newsletter called “Smooth Moves” filled with content that would be relevant to its audience.

14. Engage your audience on social media

If your home services business hasn’t jumped on the social media bandwagon, now is the time. Not only is social media a great place for people to connect directly with businesses, but it’s also a place they’re spending a significant amount of time.

The average user spends 142 minutes on social media each day. That’s more than two hours every day!

If your home service business is absent from social media, you’re missing the opportunity to engage with this highly engaged audience.

You can use your social media pages to share:

Updates about your business

Positive feedback or testimonials

Helpful videos you create

Educational content you write or curate

Local events or causes

Your social media posts don’t have to be fancy–they just have to be consistent and engaging.

Related: Get social media post ideas for each month of the year by checking out our free marketing calendar template!

15. Grow your audience with a social media contest or giveaway

If you’re looking for another way to use social media for your home services marketing, a contest or giveaway is always a great option.

Facebook giveaways or Instagram contests can help you grow your audience, engage with your existing fans and followers, and promote your business.

To run a giveaway for your home services business, simply identify a prize your audience would like (perhaps a discounted or free service), create your contest post including your timeline and how to enter, set the post live, and choose a winner when it’s time!

We walk through these steps in detail here.

16. Add your branding everywhere

If your home services business doesn’t already have your branding wherever you can get it, now’s the time. Home services lends itself well to branding on vehicles, uniforms, equipment bags, and more.

Make sure that your branding includes a link to your website and your phone number so it’s easy for people to find more information about your business when they see your brand out and about.

Home services marketing made easy

With the right marketing plan in place, your home services marketing can be a breeze. Focus on building an online presence and delivering an amazing customer experience to get new business for your home services company. And, don’t be afraid to try new marketing channels and tactics to help you stand out and reach a new audience.

Here’s a recap of the top home services marketing tips:

Invest in local SEO

Use video marketing

Improve your online reputation

Update your website

Deploy live chat

Manage your business listings

Get referrals

Encourage recommendations on Nextdoor

Respond to prospective customers quickly

Deliver great customer service

Stay top of mind with email marketing

Engage your audience on social media

Run a social media contest

Get your branding everywhere

Stephanie Heitman

Stephanie is the Associate Director of Content for LocaliQ and WordStream. She has over 10 years of experience in content and social media marketing and loves writing about all things digital marketing. When she’s not researching the latest and greatest marketing news and updates, she’s probably watching reality TV with her husband, reading, or playing with her two pups.

Other posts by Stephanie Heitman

7 Brands That Will Inspire You To Create More Awesome Content

Before I showcase seven brands that will inspire you to create more awesome content, let me explain why you should be creating more awesome content that will inspire your target audience.

There is a lot of research that shows an emotional response is important in driving further cognitive or behavioral responses.

If you want to read some original research on this topic from more than two years of work, five different data sets, around 1,000 videos, and nine individual studies by a large team of researchers from the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science, then I recommend reading Viral Marketing: The Science of Sharing by Dr. Karen Nelson-Field, which is published by Oxford University Press.

You need to create exceptionally awesome content these days to generate an intense emotional response.

Even above average content just won’t do.

Why?

According to Tubular Labs data, 24.9 million videos were published by 3.6 million accounts over the last 30 days on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter.

But, only 547,000 of these 24.9 million videos (2.2%) were uploaded by brands.

That means that brands not only have to compete with their competitors’ videos, they also need to compete with about 45 times more content created by influencers and media and entertainment companies in their industry, who are generally much better at generating an intense emotional response from the same target audience.

So, what do most brands do?

They try to be funny – because they believe that “hilarity” is a “sure-fire” creative device. Well, they’re partly right.

Hilarity is one of the ways to generate an emotional response – if you are laughing-out-loud funny.

But, it’s really hard to create branded content or a video ad that is laughing-out-loud funny, especially if it needs to be approved by a committee of risk-averse humans ahead of time.

Ironically, there is an alternative way to generate an intense emotional response: Inspiration.

Dr. Nelson-Field says in her book:

“The most successful creative approach appears to be to feature personal triumph. When a video included a creative story of personal triumph, it was shared more than other creative devices.”

However, despite the research that shows “inspiration” represents the best way to ensure that a video goes viral, Dr. Fields observes:

“Content creators rarely use personal triumph as a creative device.”

But, when brands do use personal triumph, their inspiring stories of courage and bravery change hearts, minds, and actions.

This why I want to highlight seven brands that can inspire you to create more of this type of awesome content.

1. Google Search

Google Search: Reunion was published on November 13, 2013, and is 3:33 long. It currently has 15.1 million views and 117,000 engagements. Its description says:

“The India-Pakistan partition in 1947 separated many friends and families overnight. A granddaughter in India decides to surprise her grandfather on his birthday by reuniting him with his childhood friend (who is now in Pakistan) after over 6 decades of separation, with a little help from Google Search.”

2. Thai Life Insurance

“Unsung Hero” [ภาพยนตร์โฆษณา ปี พ.ศ.2557 ] [Official TVC 2014: Thai Life Insurance] was published on April 23, 2014, and is 3:06 long. It currently has 52.8 million views and 408,000 engagements.

Translated into English, its description says:

“Ever wondered? What do we need? Why do some people have so much money … Still not happy? This clip is not the answer, but it may be the beginning.”

3. Sainsbury’s

Its description says:

“Inspired by real events from 100 years ago, this year’s Christmas ad from Sainsbury’s – Christmas is for sharing – was made in partnership with The Royal British Legion. It commemorates the extraordinary events of Christmas Day, 1914, when the guns fell silent and two armies met in no-man’s land, sharing gifts – and even playing football together. The chocolate bar featured in the ad is on sale now at Sainsbury’s. All profits (50p per bar) will go to The Royal British Legion and will benefit our armed forces and their families, past and present.”

4. Samsung India

Samsung India Service (SVC) – We’ll take care of you, wherever you are was published December 30, 2024, and is 4:01 long. It currently has 211 million views and 197,000 engagements.

Its description says:

“This video shows a story of how a young Samsung Engineer undaunted by rough terrain, attends to a customer complaint in a remote hilly area. His efforts help bring up smiles on the faces of a group of children, for whom their Samsung Television is the medium to celebrate their special moment.”

5. LG

LG Innovation Story – Brand Film 21 Years Celebrations was published on May 16, 2023, and is 4:40 long. It currently has 195 million views and 106,000 engagements.

Its description says:

“LG celebrates 21 years in India with a special treat for its customers with its latest brand TVC – LG Innovation Story, a delightful message that touches the heart of billions.”

6. Hyundai

Its description says:

7. Southeastern Guide Dogs

Its description says:

“‘Pip’ animated short film presented by Southeastern Guide Dogs. A heartwarming tale for underdogs everywhere, Pip is the story of a small dog with a big dream—to become a Southeastern Guide Dog. Does she have what it takes?”

Takeaway

The fact that so many different brands have been successful using personal triumph indicates that inspiring your target audience isn’t as hard as getting them to laugh out loud.

And getting a committee of risk-averse humans to approve an inspiring story has got to be infinitely easier than getting them to okay a funny video that might offend some segment of your target audience.

So, why aren’t there more inspiring stories of personal triumph being created – especially in the United States, where the “rags to riches” stories that Horatio Alger Jr. wrote in the late 19th century helped the population believe the myth that anyone could work hard and become rich?

Well, maybe that myth has gone out of fashion in the early 21st century. But, I have another theory.

Note that the videos showcased above range in length from 3:06 to 4:46. Maybe too many of the best storytellers in the United States – especially ones who work at big ad agencies – focused their talents on making 15- great 30-second television commercials.

This gives you enough time to tell a funny story, but not enough time to tell an inspiring story that:

Starts high.

Includes subtle branding clues.

Has unexpected shifts.

Features multiple peaks.

Tells viewers there’s more to the story for those that want it.

This emerging story arc maintains and builds interest over several minutes, which lends itself to social video, where you aren’t charged extra for longer-form content.

I hope the seven brands that I’ve just showcased will inspire you to create more awesome branded content that will inspire your target audience.

The alternative is to keep making videos that look like repurposed TV commercials. Hopefully, they are as funny as the content being created by late-night comedians.

I’m not saying this is impossible to do. I’m just saying that it’s harder to do well.

More Resources:

10 Tips To Get More Followers On Pinterest

What if I told you there’s a way to build an online empire through posting photos you love?

And what if I told you those photos don’t even have to be your own?

You’d shake your head. Impossible.

But what if I told you someone actually went and did it?

In fact, many people did it. One of them is Joy Cho.

Joy Cho started her creative design blog in 2005. As a way to grow her brand, she joined Pinterest as a beta user before it became public.

Since then, Cho has never stopped using Pinterest to grow her business. The result?

A gigantic creative empire and 12 million Pinterest followers.

And you can grow your brand through Pinterest, too. All you need is the right strategy.

Pinterest: A Treasure Trove for the Online Marketer

Pinterest is all about fantastic photos, unique interests, and creative ideas. It’s about sharing what you love with other people who love it.

But it’s not only that. It’s also a huge platform where you can market your brand and expect outstanding success. Take a look at these facts:

Pinterest has 322 million active monthly users.

90% of weekly Pinterest users log in to make buying decisions.

A survey conducted by Pinterest concluded that 73% of pinners welcome content from brands.

So how can you stand out on Pinterest and gain millions of followers, cement your brand, and invite tons of traffic to your website?

Here are 10 proven strategies that will get you noticed on Pinterest.

1. Be Selective of Your Boards

Pinterest is a little different from other social media platforms.

It’s not about the person posting the content, but the content itself and how people relate to it.

For instance, let’s go back to the example of Joy Cho. She has 77 different boards on Pinterest.

Her most popular one? The board on hairstyles.

Joy Cho’s Hair board has over six million followers. And while girls with long hair might not follow Joy Cho herself, they’ll follow her Hair board.

What this says to you is don’t waste time promoting all your boards.

Choose the ones that are the most successful and pour all your energy into promoting them.

Tip: As you can see from the above example, the board with the most pins might not be your most popular board. Joy’s For the Home board has 3,587 pins and four million followers, while her Hair board has only 351 pins but six million followers.

2. Pick the Best Time for Pinning

When you pin is as important as what you pin.

No matter how fascinating your pins are, they won’t do you good if no one sees them.

So when is the best time to pin?

According to Buffer, you should pin around the afternoons and evenings. On weekdays, the Buffer team clusters posts between 2-4 p.m. and 9-11 p.m. Eastern.

Tip: You can also research at what time your target market is most active, and pin then.

3. Take Advantage of Red Letter Days

Unlike with Facebook, users on Pinterest don’t log in to their accounts to keep tabs on their ex or find out which new tourist spots their friends have visited.

Pinterest is action-driven. Pinners log in to find inspiration for a birthday party, learn new ways to style their hair, or try out a mouthwatering recipe.

So if it’s Christmastime, Thanksgiving, or Halloween? It’s the perfect time for you to pin content related to the holiday.

Here’s an example.

If it’s almost Christmas and you’re wondering how to wrap your presents, you’d be the first to save this pin and follow the board.

Tip: It’s a good idea to pin holiday-themed content a little earlier than the holiday itself. For example, pinning Christmas ideas in November is a good practice.

4. Spark Engagement with Contests

When you give away something awesome through a contest, you get immediate attention.

For instance, take a look at this contest.

Users notice it because who wouldn’t want six free nights in Hawaii enjoying wellness treatments, sumptuous organic meals, and culture classes?

Tip: Go all out with your contests, but avoid these spammy tactics:

Running contests too often.

Requiring Pinners to endorse your website or blog.

5. Keep an Eye Out for Popular Boards

On Pinterest, there are boards that allow multiple Pinners to share their content.

Here’s an example of one.

As you can see, the board on the left features a small circle at the bottom that shows more than one profile photo. This means the board has multiple contributors.

The best thing about joining a group board is you’ll get exposure to new followers. Post something that stands out on the board, and they’ll surely be curious about you.

Tip: Don’t join boards with only a few followers. To make your time and talent worthwhile, look for those with over a thousand followers.

6. Don’t Be Afraid to Curate

As Pablo Picasso once said, “art is theft.”

But on Pinterest, you don’t have to worry about “stealing” beautiful photos. In fact, that’s what Pinterest is all about!

On Pinterest, you’re like a museum curator. You select the most fascinating works of art, organize them, and then display them for the public to enjoy.

So don’t be afraid if you only have a few of your own photos. Pinning content from other users will make you popular just the same.

For inspiration, here’s a look at Maryann Rizzo’s board, Everything.

Most of the photos pinned to the board aren’t Maryann’s own. They’re photos she genuinely cared about and saved to her board.

The result?

Four million followers.

Tip: Be selective about the photos you pin to your boards. They should fit your niche and catch attention at the same time.

7. Make the Necessary Connections

Your Pinterest account shouldn’t stand on its own.

That’s why you should connect it to your website, social media accounts, or online shop.

When you do this, Pins from these accounts get attributed to you.

You can also get analytics on your Pinterest content.

8. Be Consistent

To gain millions of followers, don’t just pin when inspiration strikes you.

Pin every single day!

The more high-quality pins you have, the more followers you’ll get. It’s that simple.

For instance, take a look at Poppytalk’s board At the Lake – Interiors.

This board has more than 1,000 pins and 3 million followers!

Tip: No matter how busy you get, make it a rule to pin at least one photo every single day.

9. Follow Other Pinners

Following other Pinners gives you two benefits:

It brings beautiful content to your Pinterest home screen.

Many of those you follow will follow you back.

Tip: It’s a good idea to follow Pinners within your niche. When you do, the content you get will be relevant to re-pin to your boards.

10. Stand Out

It goes without saying that when you do something different, people will notice.

So be creative. Be yourself. Take risks.

Here’s a lovely board to inspire you. If pink makes you smile, that is.

Are You Ready to Go Viral on Pinterest?

So, are you utilizing Pinterest as a huge marketing platform that’ll grab attention, establish your brand, and drive tons of traffic to your site?

If not, you should start right now.

Stand out on Pinterest.

Create and curate fascinating photos.

Engage with other users.

Who knows? With a little time and persistent effort, you can gain your own 12 million followers.

More Resources:

Image Credits

All screenshots taken by author, November 2023

Best Blender: Jug And Immersion Blenders From Top Brands

But which blender is right for you depends on what you’re most likely to use it for. Some blenders are optimised for crushing ice, making smoothies and cocktails. Others can be used to turn cashews into butter and whizz fibrous leaves like kale into smooth sauces, dressings and dips.

There are also different types of blender, the key ones being jug (or stand) blenders and immersion (also called stick or hand) blenders.

It’s useful to have an immersion blender in a cupboard for quickly blending sauces and soups while they’re in their cooking pots. It’s easy to use and easy to clean. You can also get more use from it if you buy one with different swappable attachments, like a whisk and mini chopper.

But a jug blender is likely to be much more powerful. Some come with additional blending cups, which you can blend a smoothie straight into and then take out with you, saving time, hassle and washing up.

Bear in mind that not all jug blenders can be used for both hot and cold ingredients, so check before you buy. Our reviews will let you know about that, as well as all of the key features and pros and cons of each appliance.

Where power consumption is concerned, a blender is the one appliance where more is better. As you use it for such short periods of time, it’s not a power-hungry device and a higher wattage usually indicates a more powerful motor. It will handle more and produce better results.

Read on to browse the best we’ve tested.

Best blenders

1. Zwilling Efinigy table blender – Best luxury buy

Pros

Gorgeous design

Crushes ice

Blends hot and cold

Cons

Pricey

Weighs 4 kilos

Lid requires firm close

Best Prices Today:

This beautiful blender mixes modern and retro design to impressive, minimalist effect. A 1.4 litre jug made from ribbed TBAA-Tritan stands on a 1,200W silver-toned motor base with non-slip feet.

Switch it on and the control panel illuminates: it’s a series of function icons around a central dial. Just turn it to the setting of your choice and press. There are five pre-set programmes: clean, ice, cocktails, smoothies, and pulse. You can blend either hot or cold ingredients, although you can only blend a litre of hot liquid.

The Zwilling Efinigy table blender’s dedicated ice crushing setting can be used without liquid, so you can crush 150g of ice or frozen berries at once. 

There’s a neat safety feature as well: you can’t run the blender without having the lid securely fixed on, so there’s no danger of getting a surprise kitchen redecoration if you forget the lid. 

Plus, if you’re after inspiration, you can download the free Zwilling app, which has a database of recipe ideas. 

Read our full

2. Nutribullet blender – Best value

Pros

Large capacity

Hot and cold usage

Effective on nuts and fibrous veg

Cons

Can’t be used without liquid as an ice crusher

Best Prices Today:

Nutribullet is best known for its personal smoothie blenders. This, however, is not a supersized version of one of those. It’s a multi-purpose blender you can use with both hot and cold ingredients. It can crush ice if it’s mixed with a liquid but that’s not its forte.

A large appliance, it’s also heavy, so you’ll want to find a dedicated spot on your counter for it. It has a 1,200/1,000 watt motor (depending on your location) and three blending settings. Unusually, it’s not retro-style, nor is it a generic and squared-off jug-on-a-box. Instead, it’s modern with a distinctive, curved control panel.  

It has a large capacity, of 64oz in the US and 1.65l, with a liquid capacity of 1.4l in Europe. As with all blenders, you need to be careful when blending hot foods, and it has a two-part venting lid to make this easier.

It’s dishwasher safe but easiest to clean with a couple of drops of washing up liquid and a quick spin. 

Use it for creamy soups, sauces and dips. It can blend nuts into butters and handle fibrous fruit and vegetables. We found it to be powerful, versatile and easy to use.

Read our full

3. Smeg 1.5 litre jug blender – Classic Smeg design

Pros

Attractive

Easy to use

Dishwasher safe

Cons

Lack of pre-sets

Not the toughest blender around

Can’t use with hot ingredients

Best Prices Today:

Like most Smeg appliances, its jug blender is a thing of beauty. It comes in a range of colours, so you can choose to match it to a Smeg toaster, kettle or coffee machine, if you want. If not, it’ll look good on your countertop, whatever your kitchen style.

It’s a sturdy, durable blender, with a 1.5 litre jug made of BPA-free Tritan. It has a two-part lid but you should let hot ingredients cool before blending or risk damaging the jug.

It has four speeds and two pre-sets and can crush ice. Still, although it has an 800 watt motor, which is decent, it’s not the most powerful blender around and we’d suggest using it with care.

This is a good blender but you’re paying a premium for the beautiful Smeg design rather than opting for the most versatile or high-wattage appliance. Still, not everyone minds that. If you want a general-use appliance to make smoothies or sauces and look good in your kitchen, you can’t go wrong with it.

Read our full

4. KitchenAid stand blender (K150) – Budget-friendly KitchenAid

Pros

Attractive

Well-made

Easy to use

Cons

650W motor

Plastic base

Just 3 speed settings

It’s also got a less powerful 650 watt motor. It can still crush ice – and in fact has a dedicated setting for doing so, but it fared less well with nuts and fibrous vegetables. In our tests, it performed better making drinks and smoothies than soups and sauces.

It’s available in a range of colours, although the options may vary depending on which region you’re in. There’s a big price difference in the UK and the US as well, with US buyers getting the better deal by some margin.

Read our full

5. Breville Blend Active – Best budget buy

Pros

Compact

Versatile

Dishwasher safe

Cons

Small volume capacity

Bright green trim

No pre-sets

The Breville Blend Active is a blender and food processor in one. But as it’s lower-capacity than many of the other blenders we’ve reviewed, with a 450ml food processor bowl, it’s better for smaller households. Its tiny footprint means you should easily be able to find a spot for it on your counter.

It also comes with a 600ml blending bottle and sports lid, so you can blend yourself a smoothie or shake and head straight out with it. And, as it crushes ice, you can use it for cold sports drinks – but you need to add liquid to the ice. Unlike the Zwilling, you can’t use it on ice alone.

It’s versatile and hardy, useful for chopping herbs, making breadcrumbs, pureeing baby food, making dips, cake batter and salad dressings. But you won’t be able to use it for large volumes of soup or sauce as it just doesn’t have the capacity.

It’s not the quietest appliance and its green trim won’t be to everyone’s taste either. 

Read our full

6. Smeg hand blender – Best immersion blender

Pros

Powerful

Beautifully made

Robust

Cons

Expensive

Best Prices Today:

An immersion blender is ideal to use on hot ingredients during cooking. Just plug it in, stick it in the saucepan and blend away. It’s also great for smoothies and sauces and it can handle smaller volumes better than a jug blender.

Smeg’s hand blender does everything you’d want. It’s powerful, with a 700 watt motor and a blending wand of stainless steel, with scratch-resistant blades. The handle is in Smeg’s classic, retro design and it comes in four colours: black, cream, red and pastel blue. 

It’s not the cheapest option but it feels sturdy and durable. To get more use from it, you can buy it with an accessories kit that includes a 1.7 litre jug, a whisk, a masher and a sealed chopper for vegetables, as well as the standard blending head.

It’s much better value to buy the whole kit at once, so give it some thought before you purchase.

Keep in mind that it’s not a cordless blender: you’ll need to use it plugged in.

Read our full

7. Russell Hobbs Desire 3-in-1 blender – Best budget hand blender

Pros

Cheap

Comes with accessories

Cons

Less powerful

Less durable

The Desire 3-in-1 is a solid, budget option. Not only do you get a 500 watt hand blender and blending head, it also comes with a blending cup, whisk attachment and sealed mini-chopper. It has two speed settings.

It’s versatile and it’ll perform most blending and chopping functions around the kitchen. It’s dishwasher-safe as well.

The downside is that it isn’t as sturdy as other blenders we’ve tested. We wouldn’t recommend trying to crush ice with it and we do suggest you treat it carefully to get the most use from it: use the pulse function on tougher ingredients and ensure that accessories are properly attached before blending or you could damage it.

Read our full

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