We Are Museums is becoming better year by year

“From museum professionals, cultural venues, heritage owners, startups and businesses, we make worlds collide and collaborate.” – WAM

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Created in 2013, We are Museums is meant to bring the two different worlds of innovation and culture on a common ground. The purpose is to help professionals from both industries find solutions to re-define the field of museums and culture through cutting edge technology.

It is the second year in a row when Oveit is taking part at Tech Loves Culture within WAM and we may say that we are really excited to see visible progress within the number and diversity of the participants.

Finding solutions to re-define the field of museums and culture through cutting edge technology

The technologies available in this year’s representation did cover a large spectrum in the triangle formed by: Culture & Art – Visitors – Technology.

Some of the most interesting and innovative technology present at WAM were:

Artlokator  a platform that connects all major art market places in one: art platforms, online & traditional auction houses, galleries, art dealers and private collectors. The website provides free valuations and knowledge about art pieces, a data library to search for items and art market trends. As well as an online gallery where you can get inspired and can share your works of art with the global art lovers community.

Overly is the first and only agency in the Baltic States that focuses on the development of augmented reality solutions and other interactive technologies that can be used within museum with the purpose of offering a more interactive experience and an easier way to assimilate and learn new information.

Vastari is dedicated to museums around the world that organise many exhibitions a year. The interface and networking tools offered by Vatsari makes it easier for these museums to communicate with the private sector directly, to tour exhibitions globally and share information for exhibitions worldwide.

Mash Machine players combine bass, drum, melody and vocal samples by placing and moving blocks on the surface. The algorithm and the custom content ensure the resulting music is always in key and on time. With no possibility to make a mistake, newly born DJs relax and experiment with music styles ranging from rock and hip hop to deep electronic techno.

Catchbox is the world’s first soft, wireless microphone that you can throw into the audience to kickstart a discussion. Catchbox improves lectures, conferences, and group work by encouraging audiences and groups to share ideas and discuss problems. The colorful box is intuitive to use, and having it thrown around engages audience members while breaking the ice. The Catchbox is a combination of innovative product design and state of the art audio technology. With a microphone element suitable for professionals the innovative AutoMute technology, Catchbox sets new standards for the audience microphone. In addition, the unique locking mechanism means that the cover is easy to replace and change. Catchbox Custom Cover is an entirely new visual medium to communicate your own brand effectively. Whether it’s your own logo, crucial event information, or a spot for sponsors, the Custom Cover is guaranteed to give you the extra exposure boost.

The list continues with many other innovative technology and products which will definitely change the whole experience offered by museums in the near future.

Museums are investing in technology with the purpose of reshaping the traditional museum into a conjuring experience. They are not only acknowledging the new services as Facebook, YouTube or Snapchat but they are actually trying to find ways of fitting in alongside them.

Read more about how to engage visitors emotionally on our blog.

 

How do you prepare for a cashless payment system?

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Last week was a full one for us here at Oveit; on Wednesday we visited the lovely city of Riga to participate at We are Museums event WAM 2017 – Tech loves Culture, where we met many museums professionals eager to use #tech to offer their customers a better experience; Thursday and Friday were reserved for ICEEfest, Interactive Central & Eastern Europe, one of the biggest  tech-related events in Central & Eastern Europe. At ICEEfest we were in charge with the registration process and also implemented the cashless payment system, offering attendees the possibility to pay using their wristbands. Everything went as smooth as it can so we thought that would be nice to share some insights that can help you to implement this cashless payment method for your next event.

 

Here are some hints for a better workflow:

Use the right tool, so you don’t have to use 2 of 3 different software products for one event (our friends used Oveit to sell tickets, check in attendees, print badges and set up the cashless payment system). We used our software “as a hole” and made it really easy to associate the NFC wristbands to an attendee and credit his/her account.

Test your hardware. For this event, we used 24 laptops, 10 NFC readers, and 6 thermal printers. It all worked well but you can be sure that we didn’t wait for the first guests to arrive before we (individually) tested every piece of hardware that we were going to use for the big event. We checked and double checked so when the guests started to arrive we knew that everything is in place and any malfunction that may occur can be easily fixed.

Make sure you have enough power supplies and a strong internet connection (it is strongly recommended to use a private network for your apps, different from the one used by your guests).

You will need to host 2 different training sessions for people operating the software: one with the cashiers (that will credit your attendees’ accounts) and one with the vendors. It’s incredibly easy to use the NFC cashless payment system (at least ours is) but you must make sure that everyone knows how to use it (don’t assume that they don’t need to test it first).

Have a crew on site that knows how to use the software and can be of help if needed. If you have access credentials for each selling point it would be best if the “guys on sight” have the ability to reset them (they are there as a backup, to fix any problem that may occur). If someone has trouble remembering how to log in (or what’s the correct password) – they will have someone to ask for help. You use NFC to improve the general experience so make sure that you have someone on site for this sort of problems.

Using cashless payments was a bliss; there were attendees from all over the world at ICEEfest, so you understand why using cash would’ve been a problem. First, not everyone had the time to stop by an ATM and withdraw cash; second, the queues would’ve been huge with hundreds of people trying to figure out which bills to use. This system allowed everyone to use their credit/debit card to top-up their accounts and a simple tap for pay at all the 8 stores available on site. The result?

 

A payment system that was very easy to use and no more queueing.

 

If you still have doubts about the NFC technology and how it can help you offer a better experience for your attendees I encourage you to read this article, where you will find (almost) all the right reasons :).

How to make your event visible using Search Engine Marketing

“Google only loves you when everyone else loves you first.” – Wendy Piersall

do you

We hear on a daily basis about Search Marketing, Search Engine Marketing (SEM) and Search Engine Optimization(SEO). But what does it really mean? Is Search Marketing the same with Search Engine Marketing? – the answer is no.

Search Marketing is the umbrella under which fells Search Engine Marketing and Search Engine Optimization

Search Marketing is the process of gaining website traffic both organic (SEO) and paid(SEM) advertising.

SEO is the process of improving your website and content so that it’s visible to search engines. The process is organic and requires a lot of patience.

SEM is paid advertising with the help of search engines. Advertisers pay and bid on specific keywords to be shown when searched for.

Search Marketing = SEO + SEM

Since both SEM and SEO are two broad and confusing topics, in this article I am going to speak about SEM, what is it, how to use it and what practices are best in order to maximize your event’s exposure.

When somebody is searching for an event the results displayed at the top of the search engine’s page represent the search ads. And obviously that’s the place you want your ad to be displayed in order to make your future attendees find you fast and easy.

Google has 78% Market Share in the Search Network Market

The Search Network Market is shared within a limited number of players and by far the leader is Google with a 78% Market Share followed by Bing and Baidu with 8% each. NetMarketShare, May 2017

The most popular among search ads are Google Search Network which handles more than 40,000 search queries every second and a total of more than 1.2 trillion web searches every single year.

Google Search Network as explained above, are the ads which help you find new customers and if used right your ads will be displayed within the top searches.

One of the major misconceptions is that whomever has the largest advertising budget wins – False!

On top of the money, what Google stands for is delivering the most appropriate content to it’s users. For this to be possible all ads have to pass through a process which is know as ad auction and only the ads with the highest Ad Rank will be placed in the top searches. Yes, a larger advertising budget can help you, especially when bidding for competitive keywords, but another important factor which can help you spend less money is the Quality Score.

AdRank = Maximum Bid * Quality Score

Maximum Bid is the maximum amount of money you you are willing to pay for a click.

Quality Score is calculated considering the overall quality of the advertisement. The factors constituting the quality score, are:

  • Relevance of each keyword to its ad group
  • The click-through rate
  • Relevance of your ad-text
  • Landing page quality and relevance
  • Your historical AdWords account performance

The one characteristic which “weights” the most from the above mentioned is the click-through rate (CTR). It tells Google how many people saw your ad and actually clicked on it. This allows Google to understand that your ad is relevant and helpful and will increase your quality rank through a high CTR.

Keyword selection is one of the most important aspect of SEM’s success

Keyword selection is one of the most important aspect of SEM’s success and beside them there are a few more practices which should be considered:

Relevant keywords it is important to identify from the beginning the keywords which are relevant to your event and customers;

-use WordStream’s Free Keyword Tool, which provides a range of valuable information, such as search volume for each individual keyword in Google and its general competitiveness.

-to find out how well your account is doing, try WordStream’s free AdWords Performance Grader.

Group of keywords – create group of keywords and market them separately and on different occasions. It is easier to monitor which ones are successful or not. It is easier to remove the ones which don’t generate any ROI and be cost effective.

Niche keywords and long tail keywords rather than general ones since the consumers who are searching an event with the intention of attending will be more specific in their searches and keyword selection rather than searching for general keywords.

Keep pace with the competition – It is important to be updated with what your competitors are doing too, what keywords or promotions are using. Try being creative and keep up the pace with them.

Bidding strategy – you should not be focused on the general keywords and how much your maximum bid can be. You should permanently monitor the campaigns, check which keywords are converting or not and practice the AB testing within keywords and campaigns.

The advantage of Search Engine Marketing is that you can monitor and track your consumer’s journey and behavior

Once a new user lands on a page, a profile is going to be created and with which it’s whole journey is going to be monitored. From that moment every marketing link clicked on, every page viewed, and every ticket bought, is captured in the profile where it can be analyzed and understood.

SEM can be a significant tool for your event. It is the tool that helps your attendees find you and in order to do that successfully you need to make sure it is used adequately. Not only Search Engine Marketing but the whole process has to be used in the right way. SEO, SEM and of course the paid ads.

SEM Terminology

  • PPC (pay-per-click)
  • CPC (cost-per-click)
  • CPM (cost-per-thousand impressions)
  • Creative/ Adtext – Heading and description of search ad
  • SERP – Search Engine Result Page
  • CTR% – Click through Rate (as a percentage) – a metric that measures the number of clicks advertisers receive on their ads per number of impressions.
  • Impressions – The no of times your ad is shown
  • Google Content Network – Display banner ads outside of Google
  • Rank/ Position – The position your ad is shown when a keyword is searched (a through 8 page 1)
  • DKI – Dynamic Keyword Insertion
  • ROAS – return on advertising spend
  • PLA – product listing ads (shopping ads)
  • Quality Score – A ranking Google gives your ad based on its CTR

Use long tail keywords to promote your events

Did you know that almost half of the world’s population (and over 75% of the population from Europe and North America) has internet access? And that on a daily basis Google and Bing gather more than 5 billion online queries? If so many people use online searches for information (and to actually buy products/services) what can we do to get a slice of this big pie. The short answer would be Search Engine Marketing; SEM has different areas to focus on but today i would like to tell you more about long tail keywords and how they could lift up your business.

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What is Search Engine Marketing? 

 

SEM is the form of internet marketing that has the purpose of increasing a site’s visibility in search engines results pages.

The two main components of SEM are Search Engine Optimization  and Pay Per Click, both of which i’m sure you have heard of, so i’ll just mention how each works (as a short reminder):

 

Search Engine Optimization- the process of increasing your site’s visibility in the search engine machines by:

  • Selecting  good keywords and focusing on them
  • Creating good and unique content
  • Creating a good structure for your website
  • Building links (internal and external)
  • Including the selected keywords in your site’s title, pages, articles, meta Tag Title, meta description etc
  • Providing best possible user experience (speed, cross-device compatibility etc.);
  • and more.

 

Pay Per Click : or cost-per-click (such as Google AdWords or Bing Ads), paid search advertising where you select the keywords for which you want to be listed (when someone searches for them) and pay when someone clicks your ad. For the search engine to determine which ad appears where the process includes an auction (you select how much you’re willing to pay for every click) and a quality score (how useful is your ad for the user: relevance, landing page etc.).

 

What are keywords? We use the term keywords for words or phrases that people search for online, through search engines. So what you type in the text box when you use Google, Bing or other search engines falls into this category.

 

The generic term keywords has 2  categories:

 

Head (or short tail) keywords:

Keywords that are most frequently searched for (usually the “head” has 1 or 2 words)

and

Long tail keywords:

more specific keyword phrases (usually the long tail phrase has more than 3 words)

 

But if head keywords have hundreds of thousands (or even millions) of searches each month why would anyone concentrate on anything else, right? Well, here are some advantages for using long-tail keywords, especially if you have a smaller event planning business.

 

 

75% of the search queries use long tail keywords 

 

This means that there are some keywords that can be found in hundreds of thousands of searches each month but most of the searches contain more specific, long-tail keywords. So while the main focus is on one quarter of the pie, there are still 3 quarters left for us to work with. There are tens of variations of a long tail keyword and each of them can bring you tens or hundreds of visitors that are further along in the buying cycle.

 

 

Search Engine Marketing is a very competitive field 

 

SEM is a process that takes time and involves a lot of work if you want to make it in the “big league”. If you construct your keyword strategy based on a very popular head keyword you will be in direct competition with all the big event planners all over the world, even if they are not your direct business competitors.

SEO – bigger companies have more resources to invest in their websites and it is easier for them to generate more content (and search engines love sites that have more pages). 

PPC – an important part of PPC is the auction for keywords and a very popular one can become extremely expensive.

If i search for “event planner” there are 28,700,000 relevant results on Google…it is hard to compete with all of them.

Let’s say that you organize leadership conferences and work in the UK. And you want people to find more about what you do, when is your next event and other useful information. If you focus on “event planner” as keywords you will enter a ferocious competition with companies all over the world for a keyword that surely is more relevant for others than for you.

 

 

Long tail keywords have a better conversion rate 

 

Using the same example as above think that someone uses “event planner” for an online search. That person may look for information on how to become an event planner, or he/she may look for someone to plan a wedding in Japan, a business summit in India or an Indie concert in Kansas City.  It’s true, there are tons of searches for “event planner” each month, but this is because “event planner” can mean different things in online search terms. On the other hand, if someone uses  “leadership conference in England” or “leadership summit 2017 Merseyside” for a search he has a real interest in your type of event.

 

Using long-tail keywords you can focus on what really makes you stand out from the crowd. For example we, at Oveit, know that our feature that allows you to use cashless payments at your events represents our advantage; so we tend to use it more than the classic “online tickets”. Use your strengths when you communicate your message and you will have the perfect match with your customers.

Best practices when advertising your event online

“Online advertising doesn’t have to be a “wild west.” – Benjamin Edelman

Camping

The two cornerstones of an online advertising mix are search ads and display ads. Even if you are promoting your business, a product or an event, these two should always be used together.

Search ads help you find new customers with the aid of search engines. When somebody is searching for an answer or product those displayed at the top of the search engine’s page represent the search ads.

The most popular among search ads is Google Search Network which handles more than 40,000 search queries every second, a total of more than 1.2 trillion web searches every single year.

The most popular among search ads is Google Search Network

When it comes to display ads,  these are the ads which appear alongside the original content on a website, social media channels, youtube, etc.

The leader is Facebook with more than 1.55 BILLION monthly display ads; however the true strength of Facebook’s immense audience stands in the potential granularity with which advertisers can target Facebook’s users.

But which one is best or more appropriate to advertise an event?

Many are arguing one practice against each other, but the truth is that both are good advertising tools and they outshine at their best when used together, since the two have different attributes; Search ads helps you find new customers and Display ads helps new customers find you.

We are going to talk about the most used paid advertising channels which are Google and Facebook and how you can maximize their use  in order to promote your event.

Managing these advertising campaigns is not that easy as it might seem, especially when having to use bidding techniques.

Google Advertising

The advertisement on Google is made through Google AdWords which is divided in two major categories: Google Search Network and Google Display Network.

Google Search Network, as explained above, are the ads which help you find new customers and if used in the right way, your ads will be displayed within the top searches.

One of the major misconceptions is that whomever has the largest advertising budget wins – False!

On top of the money, what Google stands for is delivering the most appropriate content to it’s users. For this to be possible all ads have to pass through a process which is know as ad auction and only the ads with the highest Ad Rank will be placed in the top searches. Yes, a larger advertising budget can help you, especially when bidding for competitive keywords, but another important factor which can help you spend less money is the Quality Score.

AdRank = Maximum Bid * Quality Score

Maximum Bid is the maximum amount of money you are willing to pay for a click.

Quality Score is calculated considering the overall quality of the advertisement and the factors that are constituting the quality score, are:

  • Relevance of each keyword to its ad group
  • The click-through rate
  • Relevance of your ad-text
  • Landing page quality and relevance
  • Your historical AdWords account performance

The one characteristic which “weights” the most from the above mentioned is the click-through rate (CTR). It tells Google how many people saw your ad and actually clicked on it. This allows Google to understand that your ad is relevant and helpful and will increase your quality rank through a high CTR.

Google Display Network

Through Google Display Network you will be able to show your ads on specific targeted sites and to the desired audience, based on your prefered keywords and targeting factors, with the main purpose of helping new customers find you.

The GDN spans over two million websites that reach over 90% of people on the Internet and can help you reach people while they’re browsing websites, watching YouTube videos, checking their Gmail, or using mobile sites and apps.

The Google Display Network will comprise all of the sites where advertisers can buy ads through Google, including the over one million AdSense and DoubleClick Ad Exchange partners as well as YouTube and Google properties such as Google Finance, Gmail, Google Maps, and Blogger.”

The display ads can be shown in different formats: Text Ads, Picture Ads, Video Ads or Rich Media Ads; and they can be personalized in different sizes, shapes and customized to be displayed on different devices.

Facebook Advertising

Facebook Advertising also known as paid social, has mostly the same use as Google Display Network. Its main purpose helping new customers find your business.

The Facebook ads are divided in two categories: Promoted Posts and Boosted Posts

Promoted Posts are the ones which look the same as the ones from your newsfeed posts only that they  will be displayed in the targeted audience newsfeed only, showing “sponsored” underneath. The main purpose of these ads is to promote your brand to new and potential leads.

Promoted Posts are used to bring awareness of your brand to new potential leads

Boosted Post are the ones that you post on your newsfeed and by boosting them your campaign will try to reach as many people as possible from your existing followers.

Boosted Posts are used to reach as many followers as possible

Before advertising on Facebook you have to set up a few goals, such as your objective;

Do you want to bring more visitors on your website, receive likes on your Facebook page or perhaps get app downloads; It is important to know what result you are aiming for in order to know how to promote it best, since the promote and boost post deliver different results.

Another handy function is that under each Facebook campaign there can be created different ad sets (through which you can create separate audience based on different targeting characteristics) and under those different ads you can create different images and copy.

As an advertiser with this special feature you get the opportunity to target different categories of audience under the same campaign.

Remarketing is the tool which revolutionized online advertising

Remarketing is done by allowing the advertiser to deposit a cookie of their website on the visitor’s computer. Afterwards Google will continue to display ads to those people whenever they will be visiting sites from the Google Display Network. The same practice is used on other channels as Facebook, YouTube, Mobile Apps, etc.

Through traditional advertising your event will receive awareness and acknowledgment within a limited amount of people. Digital advertising increases substantially the span of advertising through not only a bigger crowd of possible leads but as well allows the event to be discovered for those who are seeking it. The mix of both search and display ads is essential in order to cover a higher surface of possible leads.