All posts by Dave Chaffey

Dave is CEO and co-founder of Smart Insights. He is editor of the 100 templates, ebooks and courses in the digital marketing resource library created by our team of 25+ Digital Marketing experts. Our resources used by our Expert members in more than 80 countries to Map, Plan and Manage their digital marketing. For my full profile, or to connect on LinkedIn or other social networks, see the About Dave Chaffey profile page on Smart Insights. Dave is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Emarketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. In 2004 he was recognised by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing.

Please complete our survey on Content Marketing in Europe and receive a free copy of the research report

In recent years, Content Marketing has been rated my marketers as one of the most effective marketing techniques. Indeed, our informal poll of Smart Insights readers asking about current digital marketing trends has shown that in 2013, 2014 and 2015 it was rated as THE most important marketing technique in terms of generating incremental online leads or sales in the year ahead. So clearly, it's worthwhile to try to understand that works and what doesn't work in Content Marketing, so it would be really appreciated if you and your business are involved in Marketing in Europe that you to take part in our survey and anonymously share your view of effective Content Marketing techniques.  Take the Managing Content Marketing in 2016…

Our look at the latest trends in digital media and technology and how they will impact marketing this year

At the start of each year, there is always a lot of interest in predictions for the year ahead and the latest marketing trends."What's Hot?" and "What's Next?" are always the most common questions when I give webinars and talks! As we near the end of the first month of 2016, and people look to the year ahead, the interest increases. Since it's that time again, in this post and a series of others looking at customer lifecycle tactics, I'll look at what I see as the latest trends in marketing which look set to continue into the rest of 2016. [si_guide_block id="66150" title="Download Expert Member resource – Marketing Forecasting Techniques guide" description="In this guide we review the techniques which are most relevant to creating forecasts given the impact of digital disruption. This…

Facebook reactions to roll-out worldwide after testing

Importance: [rating=4] Recommended link: Bloomberg article announcing roll-out and explaining the approval process

What's the change??

You may remember that this change was first mooted back in the early Autumn - Marie Page covered the new alternative Facebook Reactions in her Smart Insights post where she showed how Facebook were testing these different Emojis to supplement Likes. Facebook had tested a 'dislike' button but it was thought that this would generate too much negativity. So, after testing, Facebook Reactions has now been fixed as a Like button alternative that comes in the form of six emoji with the following sentiments: Angry, Sad, Wow, Haha, Yay and Love. This change will have a HUGE impact in terms of the number of online consumer interactions each day, and it will affect Facebook…

We've structured our 140 resources into 15 interactive toolkits to help Basic and Expert members discover the exact tools you need

As Smart Insights has grown and we've developed more and more resources, the range and quality of the resources has increased so that we now cover the full customer lifecycle of marketing activities across our RACE Planning framework. However, as we have developed our library of advice we have suffered a challenge that all libraries, online and offline face - it becomes more difficult to find the most relevant guide. That changes today as we launch a new members area in response to feedback from our customer research that we completed in the autumn. To help with the findability of our resources and to add extra guidance on developing digital strategies, we've developed a series of interactive toolkits which group our resources around the key areas of digital marketing, or present…

The thinking behind our new summary of the latest, most critical developments in digital marketing

You'll know that Digital marketing develops fast. Really fast. So, it can be really difficult keeping up-to-date on the latest developments from the marketing platforms like Google and the social networks. Businesses and marketers who are agile can take advantage of testing the latest tools, techniques and insights to get an edge on their more laggardly competitors. Given the rate of change, when we launched Smart Insights, one of our key aims was to help advise marketers on the digital marketing techniques that are most relevant to their personal and business success or, if you prefer, to help prevent you drowning in content. Some updates are critical and will massively affect marketing outcomes, others are interesting to know but unlikely to greatly affect your…

An introduction to best practices for using buyer personas to create more customer-centric websites

Creating personas of website visitors is a powerful technique for helping increase the usability and customer centricity of a web site as part of a user-centred design (UCD) process. I've been a big fan of using personas since around 2003 I was introduced to it by Matt Dooley, a customer experience manager in the HSBC Global Ebusiness team.  At the time, they were following reports by Forrester on creating personas. This shows that they're certainly not new, indeed their equivalent of using customer thumbnails for customer segmentation or ad campaigns has existed for decades.  However, I find they're still not so widely-used when giving examples on training courses.

What is a website design persona for marketing?

A simple definition of a web persona is: "a summary of the characteristics, needs, motivations and environment of a key type of web site…

What do you think is the best, i.e. most useful marketing model? Download our two free guides on marketing models to learn how to apply them

You may have noticed we're fans of using practical models as tools to support marketing strategy development? We believe a clear, simple model gives us a framework to assess how we're doing things now compared to our competitors and plan growth strategies for the future. They're also great for communicating the purpose and reason behind a strategy you are pursuing. I think most would agree that models are useful "Mind Tools" to structure thinking and communicate a strategy, but there's a problem. Over the years,  many models have been developed and some are academic rather than of practical application in the "real world". So many marketing models have been developed over the years, that it can be overwhelming to know what to use and when... A…

Should you just live “in-the-moment” or should you plan ahead using different planning horizons?

At Smart Insights we believe that businesses with a more strategic planning approach to their marketing and digital marketing are more likely to succeed in the long-term, despite the fact that many businesses don’t have a long-term digital or marketing plan. We’re not saying that those with a more ad hoc approach aren’t capable of doing great marketing that can get results, they certainly are. Rather, we’re saying that we’ve seen that they may miss out on core “always-on” digital marketing techniques that need to be prioritised and resourced over ongoing campaign activities which become all consuming and still often get the lion’s share of attention. In our research into how businesses manage online marketing, we were interested to see how marketers plan. We saw that short-term non-strategic planning was most common among businesses who answered. …

Our recommendations on the top 10 free sources for Global, European, UK, US, Asia and Latin America digital marketing statistics

Online marketers love statistics about digital marketing. They allow us to review customer adoption of the latest digital platforms, make business cases for investment in marketing and allow us to benchmark our performance against competitors. To help readers of our blog keep 'up-to-speed' with the most significant, best sources of stats we have regular posts each week in our digital marketing statistics post category and flag them as #DigitalInsights on social media and in our enewsletter. For Expert members, we compile a regularly updated set of usage statistics to use in presentations - it's updated each quarter so all the latest stats are categorised in a single place for including in presentations. …

5 types of online audience surveying tools to help create a more customer-centred website and brand

Web analytics tools such as Google Analytics are used by nearly every company since they provide valuable quantitative data on site visitor behaviour. No surprise there. But web analytics systems don't give direct qualitative feedback from site visitors and customers and the surprise to me, is that relatively few companies use these, although their popularity is increasing rapidly. We believe that qualitative website feedback tools are also essential to take the pulse of your website, but surprisingly they are less widely used despite paid services such as Opinion Labs being available for many years and some incredible free tools such as the much lauded 4Q Survey.

January 2016 update to tools

Thanks for your suggestions in the comments - I have included UserSnap and GetResponse as more cost-effective alternatives to existing tools. Other comments of the latest tools you…

Free Content marketing strategy template

Solve your Content marketing strategy challenges with our FREE Content marketing strategy template

Need help with your Content marketing management?

Get more from your digital marketing with in-company or remote training and consultancy from Smart Insights

Free Content marketing strategy template

Solve your Content marketing strategy challenges with our FREE Content marketing strategy template