Archive for Russell Morling

Could the UK see a record-breaking Halloween in 2014?

Posted by Russell Morling on October 28th, 2014 at 3:05 am

Halloween sales in the UK have increased by a staggering 261% since 2005, growing from £90m to £325m last year. The average spend per head also increased by 262.67% during the same period.
The popularity of Halloween has grown dramatically over the past eight years with over three-quarters (77%) of 18-24-year-olds in the UK celebrating Halloween in 2013.
Last year alone, 6.5 million UK homes welcomed around 7 million trick-or-treaters to their door, illustrating just how popular the culture of Halloween has become.
Halloween is also big business for online retailers, with 1.8 million searches on for ‘Halloween costumes’ in October 2013 alone. One business that has experienced firsthand the growth of Halloween is popular fancy dress retailer, who is anticipating an even bigger year in 2014
The online retailer undertook a survey of 2000 UK residents aged 18 and over between 25th and 28th September 2014 and found that 2 in 5 (40.6%) plan to spend money celebrating Halloween this year. The survey also revealed the spending power Halloween has, identifying that one in five of 18-34 year olds plan to spend between £26 and £100 compared to only one in ten of 35-54 year olds.

Of respondents that have the... Read more

5 ways your small business can benefit from a toll-free phone number

Posted by Russell Morling on December 4th, 2013 at 9:13 am

As a digital marketer, targeting is one of the core skills that I have to use on a daily basis. Whether it's targeting the correct keywords to the correct sections of a website I'm working on, or whether it's targeting PPC ads at different geographic areas, I live and die by making sure all my efforts are targeted correctly.
So how do you apply this offline? One of the ways to target your customers offline is to ensure that you have the correct telephone number and that you're tracking the effectiveness of your offline and online activity using unique, tracking phone numbers.

I recently spoke to a telephone number and call tracking provider, TTNC, about what benefit there was to having a toll-free number for your business.
There are quite a few options for a small business when it comes to getting a telephone number. One of those options is to get a virtual number, as these allow you to be more independent and give you options with where you’re receiving calls. But even with virtual numbers you’ve got quite a few options as to the type of number you could get. Here are 5 benefits of choosing an 0800 number:
1 - Customers... Read more

Why we should care what happens to our online order once we’ve placed it.

Posted by Russell Morling on November 25th, 2013 at 8:28 am

As a former trade union member and also having worked previously in a distribution company, I was absolutely shocked to read a BBC investigation about how workers in a very well-known online retailer’s warehouse face an ‘increased risk of mental illness’.
The BBC’s undercover investigation into the warehouse was shown to one of the UK’s leading experts on stress at work, Professor Michael Marmot, who described the conditions are “all the bad stuff at once”
Without having seen the resulting programme, being screened on the BBC’s Panorama programme tonight (Monday, November 25, 20:30 GMT), I really don’t want to pass too much comment. However, with the continual technological advances in warehouse management systems and wholesale & distribution software, I find it incredible that staff are being subjected to this kind of working environment.
I’m an avid online shopper, and can completely understand the need for ever-cheaper, ever more efficient online sales systems and delivery, but surely advances in technology at the front end of online shopping should at least be matched with systems that make the picking and packing of my online order more effective and not to the detriment of the people working in the not-often-seen warehouse environments.
One of the companies I... Read more

Report – Patent Box: How UK Government Is Incentivising Innovation

Posted by Russell Morling on October 9th, 2013 at 4:19 am

Being a part of the digital marketing community, I’m always on the look out for innovation and entrepreneurship within UK businesses. In particular, the patenting of new ideas by SMEs is something I keep a very close eye on.
It’s really interesting to see the number of UK businesses that have innovative ideas and inventions that never see the light of day, so I was really pleased to find a report on the Cambridge Design Partnership website about how the UK government’s Patent Box Initiative is aiming to incentivise innovation with a reduction in Corporation Tax for small business.
The report was compiled by CDP and international patent and trade mark attorney firm Marks & Clerk. The report, ‘Patent Box: An industry report on incentivising UK innovation’, which explores the Patent Box scheme and its impact on UK innovation, has revealed that the initiative is likely to encourage big business to remain in the UK, but that the Government should do more to help SMEs with incentives to encourage innovation.
The report contains in depth interviews with managing directors and heads of R&D of SMEs, as well as R&D experts, IP managers and tax directors in senior roles at techMark firms and MNEs.
Having... Read more

Sharing Your Digital Marketing Strategy With A Wider Audience

Posted by Russell Morling on March 28th, 2013 at 2:50 am

As a digital marketer in a vibrant digital agency, I’ve always considered one of the most important things to be the transparency and visibility of the work I’m undertaking for my clients.
I try to maintain day-to-day contact with my clients and encourage two-way interaction in terms of ideas, strategies and tactics. Keeping my clients up-to-date with the latest developments in the digital world, together with showing them what our strategies have achieved to date and how we intend to grow their businesses further, is a key part of my client relationship-building.
However, managing relationships with clients, usually marketing managers, communications managers and the like, is just part of what a good agency should be doing for its clients.
I recently wrote a post on the Coast Digital Blog, about how marketing teams can achieve greater buy-in and understanding from others within their business about what digital means to them.
If you’re a marketing manager/director within a large company and you work with a digital agency, why not get your agency to showcase your activity, results and innovations to key stakeholders within your organisation?
Giving others in your company the opportunity to ask questions, see the results for themselves and understand why digital is important... Read more