How You Can Use Social Listening to Improve Your Business

Building brand awareness and connecting to customers online requires a holistic approach. Practicing social listening is just as important as creating meaningful content. In this blog post, we will introduce you to this topic and give you some tips on how you can get started on improving your brand through social listening.

What is Social Listening?

According to HootSuite, “Social listening is the practice of monitoring social media channels for mentions of your brand, competitor brands, and related keywords.” You can track any mentions online about your brand or business, which can give you insights into how people are reacting. It can also help you to quickly identify a crisis and react accordingly.

Social listening can help you:

  • Understand how your customers feel about your brand/business
  • Figure out what you can improve if there are complaints or other negative comments
  • Find out what competitors’ customers are talking about and discover trending topics
  • Complete all of this in real-time, so you can act fast if needed

Is Social Listening the Same as Social Monitoring?

Social monitoring, or brand monitoring, is when you get notified when your brand or business is mentioned online. This is useful for responding quickly when needed, but it doesn’t give you a whole picture of your brand or the industry you’re focused on.

Social listening is more expansive in that it gives you mentions about not only your brand but also conversations about your competitors, the industry and similar products. This is a more complete picture instead of just snippets related to your brand or business.

Through social listening, you can make better decisions about how to structure your marketing or social media strategy, since you have a clearer picture of all that surrounds your business.

Why You Should Use Social Listening for Your Business

1. Know your audience

By listening to what is being said about your brand or business online, you can better understand what customers want and how you can improve your offering/services. 

2. Respond to crisis 

If something goes terribly wrong in relation to your brand, you want to find out right away and respond quickly.

3. Build customer relationships

Social media can be a great way to talk to current or potential customers, but your goal doesn’t always have to be about selling something. Build relationships and respond to customers instead of just offering a product or service every time. Share useful information that piques interest instead of strictly pushing what you have to offer.

4. Learn more about your competitors

Social listening can keep you in the loop about what your competitors are doing and give you updates about the latest trends in your industry. This can inspire you to create new products or services.

5. Improve your social media strategy

Listening to your customers, competitors and your industry as a whole can help you create tailored content. You’ll be able to learn more about what your customers want and what content seems to resonate with them. Need help creating meaningful content for your customers? Take a look at our Content Strategies for Different Stages of the Buyer Journey article.

Tips on How You Can Start Social Listening

1. Use the right social listening tools

Depending on what you want to track, make sure to use the right tools. There are various social listening apps that can help you monitor your social channels. Make sure to do your research to choose the right one for your needs.

Buffer, Hootsuite, Google Analytics, Facebook Insights and Twitter Analytics are just a few that are worth looking into. 

2. Create a Social Listening Strategy

You should structure your social listening and treat it as a project. Aside from monitoring tags or direct messages, monitor variations of your brand or business name, and the founder or other public figures associated with your brand.

3. Monitor your competitors

And not just the happy customers from your competitors, but keep an eye out for unhappy customers. What are they saying? How can you cater to them? You could find solutions to their problems.

We hope this introduction to social listening was helpful for you and that you can get started using these tips right away. There are so many opportunities to connect to your  existing and potential customers by using social media and the various social listening tools available.


Want to connect with your audience, and get paid for it? Make sure to read more in our article Facebook & Instagram Subscriptions Feature: How to Make the Most of It.


Introducing GoViral in 90: How to Expand Your Network and Grow Your Business

Are you looking for new ways to build your business? Do you need more clients but hate reaching out for sales calls? Introducing GoViral in 90, a free resource and accountability check to help you connect with 90 people in 90 days and supercharge your professional life.

After nearly two decades of living in Europe, GoViral Managing Director Belinda Filippelli embarked on a journey to generate more business. The question? What could you achieve if you committed to having 90 meetings in 90 days?

After connecting with 90 people, what inspiration could you find? How would you refine your brand vision and what could you modify, cut, or add to your marketing strategy?

How much could your sales grow? 

Read on to see why GoViral in 90 works, what we’ve learned, and how the challenge could help change the game for you, too.

Why 90 Meetings in 90 Days?

The business world is large and competition can be fierce. How do you stand out in the crowd and find the people your brand can truly help? We believe an old-fashioned face-to-face meeting (in person or virtually) can work wonders for your confidence, clarity of vision, and relationships.

Whether you’re an entrepreneur, solopreneur, or freelancer, chances are you want more clients and business opportunities. Perhaps you’ve lost more customers than you’ve gained in recent years. Or maybe you’re spinning your wheels–-maintaining business as usual, but not moving forward.

In a word, you’re stuck.

We created GoViral in 90 to help you break free of stagnancy by reconnecting with yourself and others and clarifying your understanding of what your business seeks to do, and why.

Why does it work? Because sales is about relationships.

Committing to 90 meetings in 90 days seems like a tall order, but don’t panic! It’s not about reaching 90 exactly, or about making a sale during each meeting.

This is about sharing your passion.

When you share your passion, you show people what motivates you and why you’re in business. 

Belinda’s industry knowledge bears this out. Over more than ten years, her agency GoViral Digital has focused on an inbound, brand-love marketing approach that sees customers as people and leads as an opportunity to build a relationship.

Here’s what Belinda had to say about her own 90-day journey: “It’s a big challenge to do 90 meetings in 90 days, and there were many times I wanted to give up. But the fact that I committed myself to the process, to my own business, and to my own beliefs made it much more than a business development exercise. It really became a personal development exercise.”

We’re not here to sugarcoat the GoViral in 90 process, but we are here to give you the tools and motivation needed to take on the challenge.

Even if you know your buyer personas by heart, meeting with real people can help you refine them further, identify blind spots, and connect the dots between their needs and your offerings.

Join us on the journey!

We’re not selling anything. GoViral in 90 is a 100% free accountability-check challenge to level-up your brand and your professional skills.

Some of the benefits of completing this challenge:

  • Expand Your Network: engage with people and communities you normally wouldn’t
  • Improve Your Pitch: learn to pitch to different audiences, and feel confident while doing it
  • Grow Your Business: turn connections into ongoing conversions
  • Better Yourself: commit to yourself and your business and gain the confidence to achieve new heights

When you sign up, we’ll send you weekly emails for six weeks with step-by-step instructions and helpful tips. By the end, you’ll be ready to start your own 90 Meetings in 90 Days journey.

What are you waiting for? Get started today!


Interested in monthly marketing tips and updates to keep you on top of the latest trends? Sign up below for the GoViral newsletter.


Web3: What Is It and Why Should You Care?

You may or may not have heard the terms Web1, Web2 or Web3. Don’t worry if you haven’t. With so much technological change underway, it’s hard to keep up. In this article, we will cover the basic history of the World Wide Web and how Web3 will affect how marketers do business.

What is Web3?

Web3, or Web 3.0, is the third generation of the World Wide Web that is built, operated and owned by its users. New technologies are used to make a decentralized infrastructure of the internet, all while protecting personal privacy. Our GoViral Managing Director also talked a little about Web3 in the Takeaways from a Blockchain Convention blog. But before we dive deeper into Web3, here’s a little background information about how we got here.

Web1: 2001 to 2004

Web1 was the first iteration of the internet where you could view “read-only” content on static pages. Most of the users were consumers who didn’t produce any of the content. In this era the internet was decentralized, and there weren’t many protocols to govern what was posted.

Web2: 2004 to Today

In the Web2 era, the internet became a platform where you could create content, publish to forums, post on social media, create blogs, or buy and sell in marketplaces. This is the “read-write” second iteration of the net, where we currently stand today. Websites and social channels are centralized and governed by a few large tech companies. 

Large companies use the internet to market to target audiences by collecting data from individuals. In a few short years, our personal data has become a valuable commodity and a debatable topic in terms of privacy concerns.

Web3: Progressing Toward the Future

In 2014, co-founder of the cryptocurrency Ethereum Gavin Wood was the first to term Web3 as a “decentralized online ecosystem based on blockchain.” Web3 uses blockchain and decentralized technologies to create a more democratic and fair online environment. The idea is that users would own the material they post and create, and even get compensated for it. The use of personal data would be transparent, both in how it is used and by whom.

Web3 would be the “read-write-own” internet where large tech companies don’t own pools of data in centralized points. Instead, data would be stored across multiple servers and not owned by one entity or group.

Gavin Wood also founded the Web3 Foundation, which is building the blockchain infrastructure of this next era. The Web3 Foundation believes in an internet where:

  • Users own their own data, not corporations
  • Global digital transactions are secure
  • Online exchanges of information and value are decentralized

There are many other companies that are also working on similar projects to make Web3 a reality.

Why should you care about Web3?

We all get unwanted ads online. With Web3 and increased personal privacy regulations, marketers will have more difficulty accessing third-party data that is collected to run targeted campaigns. Marketers will have to find new ways to get customers to grant access to their personal data.

Web3 is still developing, but it’s good to stay informed and ahead to understand how these changes can affect your business. Here are some marketing tips that will help you grow your brand and customer loyalty in the next era of the internet:

  • Community and Relationship Building – this might seem obvious, but brands will have to genuinely build trust with their customers in order to access them and their data and to stay connected.
  • Better Products and Service Quality – over baseless ads and promises. Brands and businesses will have to live up to their promises to gain customer trust.
  • Non-Fungible Token (NFT) Limited-Items – brands have already been starting to play around with using NFTs to reach their customers, like Nike selling 600 NFT sneakers. You can read more in our Intro to NFTs for Marketing article to find out how you can apply this to your business.

  • New Loyalty Reward Systems – we all love loyalty reward systems and customers will want to be rewarded for sharing their personal information with other businesses. Digital tokens or other forms of reward systems will appeal to customers in the new Web3 era.

The Future of Web3: Is it Certain?

As we said before, Web3 is still in progress and there isn’t a complete Web3 infrastructure created as of yet. Some even are speculating that it’s a fad that won’t be developed, and questions of sustainability and scalability are at play.


What is certain is that as Web3 continues to develop, it’s best to stay informed and to prepare yourself for the possible changes in your marketing strategy. Need some help growing your blockchain business? Make sure to contact us below and we will be sure to reply!


Facebook & Instagram Subscriptions Feature: How to Make the Most of It

In 2020, Facebook released the Subscriptions feature, which helps individuals and brands better connect and engage with their followers. Instagram followed a year later based on the same model, but so far, it’s being tested only in the United States. It’s only a matter of time until Instagram releases the feature in other countries, so learn about it now and be ready when you gain access.

In this blog post, you’ll learn more about the Subscriptions feature, and how it can help you earn a recurring monthly income from loyal followers.

Make sure to read our blog Into the Metaverse: Understanding Facebook and Instagram in the Age of Meta, to learn more about these important social platforms.

What Is the Subscriptions Feature?

By subscribing to a profile on Facebook or Instagram and paying a monthly fee, followers can access exclusive content. The content for subscribers includes stories, lives, reels, posts, group chats. Additionally, a subscriber-only purple crown badge appears when subscribed followers comment on a creator’s post or send them a direct message.

Instagram Subscriptions Features

  • Subscriber Lives: Exclusive Lives allow for greater engagement with followers.
  • Subscriber Stories: Subscribers can access exclusive stories, and can use interactive story stickers with their most engaged followers. 
  • Subscriber Badges: A special badge is present next to subscribers, so they’re easily identifiable for further engagement.
  • Subscriber Chats: Subscribers can access exclusive chats to interact with a creator (up to 30 subscribers per chat).

Additional Facebook Subscriptions Features

  • Subscriber Email Access: Subscriptions creators can download emails of new subscribers (who have agreed to share their email addresses) so they can maintain a relationship off of Facebook.
  • Creators can now use a personalized link to promote their Subscriptions to reach a wider audience and direct them to the platform.

What are the major benefits of using the Subscriptions feature as a creator?

You can build a stronger connection with your followers by earning a monthly subscription fee. Who doesn’t want that? By engaging with loyal subscribers, you can also build even stronger relationships that support your business and goals.

What’s even better is that you as a creator earn 100% of the profit from the Subscription fee, excluding taxes. But this might change. Meta noted that no fees will be collected for Facebook (and Instagram) Subscriptions until 2023 at the earliest. 

Not sure how to make your content meaningful? Make sure to read our blogs Content Strategies for Different Stages of the Buyer Journey or What You Need to Know to Personalize Your Marketing Content for a number of different tips and tricks.


Sign up for our monthly GoViral newsletter below for more info on how to grow your business and create rich content for your target audience.


Intro to NFTs for Marketing

What’s the deal with NFTs? You may have heard “non-fungible tokens” defined as digital artwork, but the applications of NFTs are so much greater. Here we explain what NFTs are, and how you can include them in your marketing strategy.

What is an NFT?

NFT stands for non-fungible token. No, it doesn’t have anything to do with fungi. Non-fungible means the token is unique and can’t be replaced or duplicated. 

And what’s a token? A token is a cryptographic asset that lives on the blockchain and acts as a certificate of ownership.

In short, an NFT is a unique certificate of ownership. 

NFTs are not synonymous with digital art. An NFT can represent art, either digital or physical, but it can also represent music, images, or clothing. Almost anything can be tokenized.

Why should I care about NFTs?

The movement from Web2 to Web3 promises to empower individuals by giving them ownership over their content and data. This includes decentralizing control—from a few large companies to individuals—through technology such as blockchain.

NFTs, which use blockchain for ownership verification, have become a symbol of the greater transition to Web3. An enthusiastic market for NFTs exists, waiting for brands to embrace decentralization and the shift in ownership from the few to the many.

Reasons to Use NFTs for Marketing Purposes

First things first, NFTs are relatively new, and the NFT market can be volatile. Think carefully before you use NFTs for marketing, and keep in mind there isn’t a long history to draw on to define best practices. That said, let’s take a look at how you can use NFTs for marketing to build your brand awareness, increase customer loyalty, and create new sources of income.

1. Increase Brand Awareness

You can use NFTs to build awareness around your brand. Awareness can be difficult to measure, but it’s essential to your success. If you create and sell NFTs in conjunction with a new product or service, you can gain attention while also communicating your brand’s values.

More and more, customers care about your values, and investing time and energy in NFTs can show that you’re committed to decentralization and individual ownership of content and data. In short, that you believe in the democratization of the internet.

Norwegian Cruise Line recently minted six NFTs to mark the launch of a new class of cruise ships. The initiative created buzz and attention for the brand, and communicated Norwegian’s commitment to freedom, flexibility, and cutting-edge technology.

2. Convert Customers Into Evangelists for Your Brand

When you’ve engaged a lead enough to become your customer, it’s time to delight them. One way to do this: create NFTs out of the building blocks of your brand. For example, you can mint a series of unique versions of your logo, or the original hand-drawn concept for your brand’s visual identity.

Think of this as pulling back the curtain for your loyal customers to more deeply connect with your brand. Giving them the opportunity to own a piece of your creation story will demonstrate your openness and transparency.

3. Raise Money by Monetizing Exclusive Content and Experiences

Once you have a group of loyal customers who evangelize your brand, consider using NFTs to monetize exclusive content. Evangelists may be willing to pay for videos, how-to articles, or other content they wouldn’t otherwise have access to.

Exclusive content can make your evangelists feel appreciated. You could set up an NFT that unlocks this content, much like a one-time charge for premium membership. You can also hold in-person events in which ownership of an NFT acts as a ticket for admission.

Take Anheuser-Busch’s recent event, NFT Beerfest, which gave Budweiser NFT owners a chance to tour their flagship brewery, participate in giveaways, and enjoy live performances.


Interested in using NFTs for marketing but not sure how to get started? Share your ideas with our GoViral Blockchain team, and we’ll be in touch!


How to Use Keywords for SEO

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has played a valued role in marketing strategy since the dawn of digital marketing. Best practices have changed a lot over the years, but one element has remained essential: keywords. Here we explain what keywords for SEO are, and how you should use them.

What are keywords for SEO?

Keywords for SEO are words and phrases that lead people to your content through search engines.

For example, if you sell bananas at an outdoor market, people might find you by searching “bananas for sale in [geographic location]” or “produce found at [name of market].” A search for “bananas” will give too many options, and we can’t be as certain that a person searching this word is actually looking to purchase bananas, let alone to purchase from you in your geographic location.

Marketers often divide keywords into two categories. 

Short-tail keywords contain 1-3 words and are general in nature: e.g. “bananas for sale.” 

Long-tail keywords usually contain 3 or more words and are more specific: e.g. “bananas for sale at an outdoor market near me.” They usually have a much lower search volume than short-tail keywords. The tradeoff is, long-tail keywords give more information about the user’s intent, making these users more valuable for your business. That is, as long as the long-tail keyword matches your offering.

Stage 1: Define content pillars for your marketing strategy

As always, we at GoViral recommend defining your buyer personas before creating your marketing strategy. Buyer personas help you define the people you are trying to reach.

After you’ve defined your buyer personas, it’s time to map the buyer journey. Consider how your content meets the needs of your personas at different stages of their journey. The ultimate goal is to lead them to a conversion (for example, a purchase on your website).

With defined personas and a mapped journey, you can now create content pillars. Think of content pillars as topic areas. The key to creating successful content pillars is to make sure they match what your buyer personas are looking for. For the banana stand example, content pillars could be Buying Local, Nutritional Benefits of Fruit, and Banana Recipes.

We recommend taking your time defining buyer personas, the buyer journey, and your content pillars. The better your work here, the easier it will be to implement keywords for SEO.

Remember that what you define in this stage can change over time. As you gain more information about your customers and/or introduce new products or services, don’t be afraid to update your strategy.

Stage 2: Research keywords related to your content

Keyword research means finding and analyzing possible keywords for your digital content.

You can start by making a master list of keywords related to each of your content pillars. Think of this list as a starting point. You will likely add to it as your research progresses.

Once you have your list, use a free tool such as Google’s Keyword Planner to start your research. Consider three metrics to evaluate how useful keywords are for your purposes: Relevance, Authority, and Volume.

Relevance

The days of stuffing your content with keywords to increase your Google ranking are over. Search engines these days take into account whether your content meets the needs of the searcher. In other words, user intent matters.

How do you make sure your keywords are relevant to the user’s intent? The quickest way: type your keyword into Google search and see what kind of results you get. Are the results similar to your content? If so, the keyword might be relevant for you.

Authority

Google rankings give weight to authority, primarily meaning the authority of your website. Does your website have helpful content that others have linked to on social media or on other authoritative websites? Then you have higher authority in Google’s eyes, and your search ranking will reflect that.

You can’t earn authority overnight, so make sure your long-term content strategy takes this into account. If you are just starting out, you probably don’t want to invest much in keywords that have heavy competition from well-known global brands.

Volume

How often do people type your keyword into Google search? Tools like Keyword Planner will give you this information.

Remember that higher volume does not necessarily mean “better” keywords. Some short-tail keywords will have incredibly high search volume, but are less likely to bring you visitors whose needs you can meet.

Alternatively, long-tail keywords may have lower volume but less competition from websites seen as authoritative, and more relevance to your content based on user intent.

Stage 3: Implement keywords for SEO

So you’ve settled on keywords that fit your content and the intent of your audience. Where do you put them?

First things first, use keywords in a natural way that adds value for your audience. Throwing in as many keywords as possible, willy-nilly, won’t work.

As much as you can, make sure to include keywords in the body of your content. If you’re writing a blog and focusing on one primary keyword, try to include it once every 200 words.

Also consider Meta Descriptions, Meta Title Tags, and the page URL. Use your primary keyword in all three places to boost your search results.

Finally, make sure to monitor your SEO results over time. Is your page still ranking for the primary keyword you chose? If not, consider changing it. Alternatively, create new content that better fits the search behavior of your potential customers.

Keywords for SEO form an important part of any inbound marketing strategy. Just remember you are writing for people, not for algorithms. Yes, knowing how the algorithm works can help. But high search ranking or not, searchers are looking for content written with their needs in mind.


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5 Tips for Marketing to Gen Z

Gen Z is entering adulthood, and their buying power will soon become the largest of any generation. But Gen Z’s habits, and especially their relationship to technology, diverge widely from Millenials, Gen X, and Boomers. What do you need to know to market to this group successfully?

Generation Z was born in the late 1990s to the early 2010s (exact years vary depending on who you ask), and is rapidly coming of age. By 2023, Gen Z will number 74 million people in the United States alone.

Ready to learn how to market to Gen Z and convert them into customers?

Follow Fundamental Best Practices First

First things first, there’s no magic formula. Not all members of Gen Z think and act the same, and pretending they do won’t help much. With inbound marketing, there’s no substitute for defining buyer personas based on your business’s target market.

When strategizing about marketing to Gen Z, create at least one buyer persona in this age group. Remember, your Gen Z persona does not represent an entire generation. They represent the interests, problems, and desires of one type of person who could become your customer. 

Also, always consider your perspective and goals as a business. If your product or service appeals primarily to retirees, for example, you may not need a Gen Z buyer persona. On the other hand, if your brand aims to solve problems for people entering adulthood, you may need several. 

Now that you’ve considered buyer personas, let’s talk strategy. We know Gen Z is diverse and has varied interests, but what collectively sets them apart from previous generations? Our top 5 tips will help get you started.

1. Strive to Entertain

Members of Gen Z are the first digital natives,” people born and raised with technology at their fingertips. In part because of this, they tend not to distinguish as much between different types of content. Consider that years ago, video advertising used to come only during scheduled commercial breaks. Gen Z’s reality is much different.

They have been bombarded with content their entire lives, with marketing messages taking many different forms. It’s necessary to stand out to get their attention. One surefire way to do this? Entertain them.

Content that grabs the viewer’s attention within the first few seconds is best. Consider video tutorials for social media, behind-the-scenes content giving an honest look into your brand, and helpful resources framed with a sense of humor.

2. Use Short-Form Video

Gen Z consumes more videos than their older counterparts, particularly short-form. Given their high usage rates of YouTube and TikTok, they often expect short videos with features such as music, visual effects, and text overlays.

Include video marketing in your strategy from the start, and keep your videos to 15 seconds or less for best results. Instagram Reels and TikTok work well for your polished videos, while Instagram stories can help create a more personal connection with your audience.

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3. Highlight Your Brand’s Values and Beliefs

On average Gen Z cares more than older generations about what businesses stand for, and how they contribute to the greater good. Before marketing to Gen Z, consider your brand’s values and vision, and think about how to communicate them to your audience. 

If you haven’t already, make the mission of your business publicly available. Better yet, incorporate your beliefs into your content strategy so viewers start to associate your brand with those values. 

As a side benefit, the more you care about the content you create, the more authentic it becomes. Gen Z views brands skeptically, looking for proof of their values in what they do, not only what they say. So stick to your mission and spread the word about how you’re trying to make positive change.

4. Create Community

Brands often fall into the trap of marketing on auto-pilot. But especially with social media marketing, don’t forget communication goes both ways. Gen Z expects to interact more than previous generations.

Consider interactive options such as polls, quizzes, and Q&A sessions. Solicit feedback and monitor comment sections for opportunities to start conversations.

Other ways to jumpstart community include influencer marketing, which can help your audience see themselves in your brand, and user-generated content, which gives your audience a stake and a feeling of belonging.

In the near future, Gen Z might help accelerate a more fundamental change in social media. Research shows they are more comfortable with community-based platforms such as Discord and Twitch over more traditional social media.

5. Consider TikTok

When it comes to which social media platforms to focus on, the old rules no longer apply. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram can still give you results, but don’t stop there. 

One of the top social networks for Gen Z? TikTok. Fully 60% of TikTok’s users are in Gen Z. Known for less formal and more spontaneous content, TikTok can help your business connect with customers on a human level.

Joining a new social platform can also help refresh your brand image. Given TikTok’s emphasis on short-form video and humorous content, it’s a great place to experiment with tips 1-4 on this list.


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Takeaways from a Blockchain Convention

Our Managing Director Belinda Filippelli recently attended the European Blockchain Convention (EBC) in Barcelona. As Europe’s premier blockchain event, EBC brought together more than 1,500 attendees from around the world to discuss the current state of blockchain and its promise for the future.

Keep reading for a Q&A with Belinda on her impressions of the event, thoughts on marketing for blockchain, and key takeaways for the GoViral Blockchain team.

Q: What was your overall feeling after attending EBC?

A: What was interesting to me about going to the European Blockchain Convention was that a lot of the excitement and passion around the event was very similar to what I experienced when I started working in the digital world in 1999. I was working in Switzerland for a nonprofit association for languages, localization and globalization. And during that time people were saying “Wow so if I have a website in another language then I can sell in different countries” and everybody was really excited about all of the opportunities that was going to bring. 

But also during that time there wasn’t a lot of regulation. This industry was really young. A lot of the talk was very idealized, but you could see that it was going to take a while for the rest of the world to catch up because technology runs so much faster

And now 25 years later, sitting in an event about blockchain and Web3 had the same kind of feeling. It was exciting once again to see this is an internet revolution that’s coming. But it’s going to be a very crowded marketplace, and it’s going to take a while before industries and legislation come together to make solutions more seamless for the user.

So my overall feeling was excitement. People are working on solutions for the future but my overall impression is that we’re still very far behind. The industry is still very immature.

Q: In terms of end users, what do you expect to come first? What would end users potentially notice first in the future?

A: One of the things that was really interesting was that one of the speakers, Benjamin Bilski from Nagax, showed statistics that in 1998 there were 200 million people who were using the internet and now in 2022 there are 200 million people who are using blockchain. So the idea is that we’re basically at the same place with Web3 as we were with the internet in 1998.

If you put yourself back in that place, what were people doing internet-wise? In 1998 there were 200 million users but people didn’t have it in their homes. They didn’t have it in their hands. They didn’t necessarily need it to work or so on. But it was something that was out there being used. And some people were saying “oh it’s just a trend, you know, it’s nothing.”

And then by 2006 smartphones were really starting to penetrate the market. So if you look at those eight years, you can see that we went from nobody really knowing what the internet was to people having the internet in their homes, starting to have to use it for their jobs, to actually having smartphones and internet in their hands at all times. And I think we’re looking at the same thing with blockchain. 

What exactly will enter the market I can’t say for sure, but I know specifically that with GoViral we’re working in the healthcare industry with the first industry backed movement to implement blockchain, the PharmaLedger project. You can see why they have the ability to do this because already these companies have implemented or taken on the technology they need to move to the blockchain. And that’s going to be handed to the user through different use cases, like eLeaflets that help you to see all the information about your medication. 

So what I see for end users is that it’s going to come from big providers, probably in the supply chain space. Definitely blockchain is not going to infiltrate the US by people getting on OpenSea and doing NFTs or trading cryptocurrency. That’s not going to be the mass way. It’s going to be just like in 1998 when people were on the internet to develop and create things, and then it started to come to users through their telephone providers, through their home TV providers and so on. That’s how I believe it’s gonna come.

Q: You’ve mentioned Web3 a few times. What does Web3 mean?

A: Basically Web1 was the first iteration of the internet where you could only read it. It was information that was up there for us to read. 

Web2 is what all of us know now. It’s what GoViral is built on. In Web2 you can publish and you can create: blogging, people being able to make off-the-shelf websites, social media. We suddenly had all this power to say “oh I have a voice now within the internet. I can talk back to my company, I can complain about a situation.” And that was awesome. 

That’s what I built GoViral on 11 years ago was empowering users and customers and teaching companies that they now needed to listen. And that meant a lot to me. But over a decade of me running this company, people are feeling less and less empowered by this voice they have on the internet because they have no control over their data, they have no control over where their data is sold and they have no governance within these platforms. So Web3 is going to be a shift like blockchain to decentralized content, where I as the publisher own my material, it’s transparent how my data is being used, and I can take part in governance.

One of the projects at EBC I particularly found interesting was Distrikt. I actually learned about them first in Dubai at the blockchain summit in October 2021. Distrikt is the first ever community-owned professional social network completely on the blockchain. So it’s definitely something that people can try right now. Right now they have 20,000 registered users. I just love the idea behind it. It’s a great way to show what I was talking about before, which is the idea that with Web2 users had a voice, but now they don’t feel so empowered and Web3 is going to give that empowerment again with ownership, transparency, and governance.

Q: From the marketing side, for Web3 and blockchain-enabled projects, it seems like one of the challenges would be to communicate what you were just talking about: the problems that this technology solves. What other challenges do you see in marketing for blockchain?

A: One of the questions on the marketing side is that there are so many barriers to people adopting new technology because they have so many years of mistrust. And there needs to be a real shift in the idea of what it means for our data, our digital data, to be centralized or decentralized. We also have to be able to explain in a simple way the importance of the shift from centralized to decentralized. 

But there are still going to be barriers. The most important thing is to show people how the technology is going to make their life better. And that’s not going to happen through a marketer like me, but through an industry coming and creating a solution.

I’m also working in pharma, and there’s a big mistrust of pharma. So it will be interesting to see how people accept this kind of information. But again, it’s technology that’s being offered to users that is not owned by someone, it’s not owned by these companies in pharma, they can’t use the data in any way. So I feel excited about it, but we’ll have to deal with a lot of negativity as well. Quite frankly in the 11 years of GoViral we’ve dealt with negativity because there are a lot of people who still hate social media and hate online marketing in general.

We just strive to make sure we’re doing work within the digital field that really matters to us, that isn’t taking advantage of users in order to gain money for companies, but really creating a nice community where companies are reaching the people that are most likely to want and need and appreciate what they’re offering. And without taking advantage of those users. At GoViral our way of creating inbound marketing and digital we’ve been really successful at that, and that’s the approach we take with blockchain solutions as well.

Q: What is your perspective on the vocabulary of blockchain and Web3? How do you address that as a marketer when, for example, people think of blockchain as synonymous with cryptocurrency?

A: When it comes to vocabulary and understanding, it just takes time. We can joke about having a family member that still calls it the world wide web, you know? Even in my own company we still will have conversations with clients where they’re describing their profile as a page or vice versa, so as a communicator words are important. 

This technology is going to give us a whole new language that nobody really understands. I think blockchain, NFTs, the metaverse – it’s all going to be kind of interchangeable and there’s not going to be a lot of understanding around it. And that is always the challenge.

But I find the most important thing is to always tell real-life case studies. It’s not so important to explain to the user “oh but this is ledger technology. We’re using crypto but it’s a blockchain-based, etc.” it’s more important that they just understand that now you don’t have to pay fees on transactions at your bank, you’re gonna see the money come up automatically, or you don’t have to go to a mortgage broker or use a lawyer to manage your money, or to refinance your home, or to create a will and testament in the future. 

All these things are going to empower us to be able to do things on the blockchain that we weren’t able to do before, but the most important thing is to show people that they now don’t need third-party intermediaries and that they’re going to save money. And that’s going to speak to them and make them adopt way more than even transparency, trust, and governance. Which is the blockchain line right now. I think the future will be: “Cheaper, Easier, and You Don’t Need to Talk to All These Other People.” That will be enough for people.


Are you working on a blockchain-related project? We want to hear about it! Share your ideas with us and we’ll be in touch.


How Not to Annoy Your Customers on the Buyer Journey

At GoViral our marketing work is built on a solid foundation: the buyer journey. Website tools like cookies, pop-ups and widgets can help you meet your buyers where they are, but too many websites today do too much.

Fortunately, there’s a way to stop annoying your customers. Keep the buyer journey front and center when planning your website strategy. This will help you meet your buyers where they are, rather than simply throwing everything and the kitchen sink at them when they walk through the door.

What Is the Buyer Journey?

Simply put, the Buyer Journey is a buyer’s path to purchase. Customers don’t just spontaneously appear. They move through a process of research and consideration before deciding to purchase.

There are five stages to a buyer journey. First comes Awareness that a problem exists. Second, Research to try to solve the problem. Third, Consideration of one or more options. Fourth, Purchase of a product or service that solves the problem. The final stage is Post-Purchase, when a buyer reflects on their purchase and has the potential to become a loyal customer.

To map out the most accurate buyer journey, you’ll need to identify your buyer personas. Head over to our Buyer Persona Guide to learn how. Creating buyer personas can be a helpful reminder that your potential customers are people, not numbers.

Now that we know how to start building our strategy, let’s take a look at the different types of pop-ups you might put on your website.

Make Cookie Notices Compliant and Unintrusive

Let’s talk cookies. Cookies are text files that collect information about website visitors, usually in an attempt to improve the user experience. Most websites that use cookies (hint: if you use Google Analytics, you use cookies) are required to notify visitors and explain how their information is used. In some areas, including Europe, website owners are required to get consent in order to use optional cookies (cookies not necessary for the functioning of your site).

When required, cookie notices must be displayed to every first-time visitor. This means you can’t segment your visitors based on where they are in the buyer journey. You might think first-time visitors are all in the Research phase, but some may have interacted with your brand through a different channel. Some even may have made a purchase already. Perhaps they purchased in person but never visited your website, or perhaps they cleared all the cookies in their browser and are starting from scratch.

The point is, the cookie notice is a pop-up that can’t be reliably mapped to the buyer journey. So instead, focus on 1) fulfilling regulatory requirements and 2) choosing a pop-up that covers as little of the page as possible. Consult your legal team to ensure you’re following regulations, and opt for a banner-style pop-up, preferably placed in the footer. A pop-up that covers your entire page obscures important information and is more likely to annoy your visitors.

Add Help Widgets Only Where Necessary

If you want to install a help widget on your website, consider which pages will attract visitors looking for help. Leave the widget off all other pages. 

Of course, consider your brand. If the entire purpose of your website is to provide live help, and this is clear to visitors, you’re probably an exception to the rule.

Place your help widget at the bottom of the page. Visitors typically read a page top down and left to right. By placing the widget at the bottom, you give your audience a chance to find the information they need first. Only after scanning the page will they reach help, which they can bypass if they no longer need it.

As far as the look of your help widget, make sure it fits your branding without blending into the page. Use contrasting colors to make sure the widget stands out for those who need it, as well as for those who just need to find the close button.

Target Newsletter Pop-Ups to Visitors in the Later Stages of the Buyer Journey

Are you trying to get more subscribers to your newsletter or other regularly published content? Newsletter pop-ups rarely make sense on the homepage of your website. 

Exceptions: maybe your website is a sub-site intended for loyal customers. Or maybe you’re able to display the pop-up only for visitors who have been to your site multiple times (or based on different parameters you set). Some Content Management Systems such as Hubspot allow you to target pop-ups in this way, which you should use to your advantage. 

Many marketers value newsletter sign-ups highly because you are collecting email addresses of people interested in your brand. Considering email marketing is still one of the most effective ways to reach buyers, you should treat the people behind those emails as respected, valuable contacts. Make sure to include a clear Call to Action on your newsletter sign-up, and enough clarifying information that visitors understand what they’re signing up for.

CASE STUDY: PharmaLedger

In February 2021 our client PharmaLedger came to us with a request. A consortium exploring blockchain technology’s application to real-world health care challenges, they like many brands were struggling to gain subscribers to their monthly newsletter.

They didn’t want to annoy their visitors with an intrusive pop-up, but we came up with a solution: a pop-up from the footer that appears only when visitors leave the site.

The chart below shows total newsletter subscribers, with a sharp increase after we made the pop-up live in February 2021.

Use Video Auto-Plays Sparingly

Do you have embedded videos on your website? Unless the primary purpose of your page is to play video, you should probably opt-out of auto-play. 

The key, once again, is to put yourself in the buyer’s shoes. Why are they visiting the page in question? If it’s a landing page only accessible from a link that makes it clear they’re clicking to watch a video, auto-play is a great option! If your page serves different functions for different visitors (like most pages), leave it to the visitor to decide whether to play the video.

Video auto-plays can doubly annoy visitors with images and sound, so tread lightly. Remember, your website may allow you to track click percentages or how many seconds a video is played. This information is impossible to gather if the video auto-plays.


Want expert guidance on leading your customers through the buyer journey? Contact us to request a proposal.


10 Graphic Design Best Practices for Beginners

Humans are visual creatures, and the look and feel of your marketing content is critical to its success. Here we outline our top 10 best practices for graphic design.

What Is Graphic Design?

Graphic design is the use of artistic elements such as images and text to communicate ideas visually. Successful graphic design connects with the viewer, clearly communicates ideas, and looks visually appealing.

In marketing, graphic design may be used for presentations and proposals, brand logos, email headers, social media posts, and much more.

Whether you are a one-person show and graphic design is a small part of your job, or you have a large team with multiple graphic designers, it’s valuable for everyone working in marketing to know the basics. Below we’ve collected our best practices for graphic design. Bookmark this page to refer to our top 10 tips when designing for yourself or for clients.

Top 10 Best Practices for Graphic Design

1. Know Your Audience

The number one concern at GoViral is our audience. Think about your buyer personas when creating graphics. What are their expectations for the look and feel of marketing content? What elements might make them feel positively toward your product? How can you communicate your message without confusing them or turning them off?

2. Let Color Theory Be Your Guide

Color is one of the first elements the human brain registers when looking at a piece of design. Colors create an emotional response in the viewer and can be strongly associated with memory. We know you can’t read your buyers’ minds, but brushing up on the basics of color theory can help guide you in your color choices.

3. Choose a Font That Fits Your Voice

Fonts communicate much more than just the words you type. Like all elements of graphic design, your font can create an emotional response in the viewer. Broadly speaking, serif fonts such as Times New Roman have “tails” on the ends of letters, making them more suitable for traditional or formal communication. Sans serif fonts such as Helvetica have no tails, giving them a cleaner look often described as modern or less formal.

Also consider the spacing, both between lines and between characters (kerning). Is your text easy to read? Are the spacing and size of your font consistent?

4. Make Layout Decisions Thoughtfully

When designing graphics, think carefully about where you decide to place visual elements such as images and text. Consider the overall balance of your design. Are the elements distributed in a visually appealing way? Do the alignment and size of the elements help the balance or seem to make it unbalanced?

Also think about order and organization. Is a viewer likely to read your text in the order you intend?

5. Use a Grid for Precision in Spacing and Alignment

Graphic design software such as Photoshop and InDesign usually includes an option to overlay a grid on your workspace. This can help you maintain consistent alignment and spacing throughout your design. No more guessing whether the borders of two elements line up, or whether the space between lines of text is consistent.

Grids can also help give you direction as you design. A blank page can give you too much choice: the option to place your elements virtually anywhere. A grid will give you a manageable number of defined options, all of which will promote balance and order in your design.

6. Use Visual Hierarchy to Guide the Viewer

Similar to how layout and grids can help increase understanding, the visual hierarchy of your design guides your viewer and communicates the relationships among your ideas. Visual hierarchy refers to the order of importance of your design elements. Broadly speaking, the most important element should be the largest in your design, and size should decrease with importance.

For example, if you’re designing for a company that recently rebranded, the new logo may be the most important element. This may be followed by the tagline and finally by the disclaimer or copyright (usually tiny font size).

7. Use Negative Space to Your Advantage

Negative space, also called white space, is necessary in graphic design. Without white space in text, we wouldn’t be able to distinguish individual letters and words from the background. Design is not a challenge to cover every pixel of your digital canvas.

White space lets your design breathe and gives your viewer a fighting chance to receive your message. It also supports visual hierarchy (see #6) and reads as more sophisticated and refined.

8. Use Contrast

In a similar way to white space, contrast can help you direct the viewer’s attention to the most important design elements. Contrasting colors enhance the visual beauty of your design and naturally attract attention.

Consider using contrast to communicate opposing ideas as well, such as empty and full, positive and negative, and simple and complex. As with all of our tips, don’t use contrast just for the sake of it. Make sure it’s serving your design and your messaging.

9. Personalize Your Design

Personalizing your marketing content can help you reach your audience more effectively. There are different levels of personalization, but the best place to start is to put yourself in your customer’s shoes. Consider at least tailoring your content to your buyer personas, or take it one step further and change your copy depending on where the viewer is in the buyer journey.

Personalization helps you connect to your viewers and speak to their specific needs. Learn as much as you can about your audience so you can make an informed decision about the level of personalization that’s right for them.

10. Take a Break

Working too hard for too long can leave you exhausted and ineffective. Remember you’re a human, not a machine. Stepping away from your computer for a few minutes or switching to another task temporarily can help you recharge and regroup. Sometimes the best ideas come when you stop trying to force them.

Taking a break can also give you the opportunity to share your work in progress with a trusted colleague. Get a second set of eyes to test whether your design is accomplishing what you want it to.


With more than ten years’ experience in inbound, brand-love marketing, the GoViral team is always ready to share what we’ve learned. Sign up for our newsletter below for monthly updates and marketing tips to help you win over customers and grow your business.