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In a pay-to-play world, social media advertising is a must for most brands and businesses. Organic reach is down across most of the major social media networks, and the days of you being able to simply post something on social and expect all your followers to see it are well and truly over.

That mindset has been gone for a few years. Now, it’s all about how you target your audience, build customer journeys and get people to your site to make a purchase. Paid social media strategies help with exactly that.

When deciding whether social media advertising is the right for your business, these points will help when you’re debating the pros and cons.

Creating specific social media target audiences

Most social media platforms allow you to target people as broadly or as granularly as you need to, depending on your budget of course. It allows you to craft the right message for the right consumer for your business, at the right stage of the customer journey.

Connecting with people who need your service or product

Simply put, the first step to making a sale for any business is brand awareness. Social advertising optimized for reach allows you to get targeted consumer eyes on your business, campaign or brand. It allows you to remind consumers of their ‘unmet need’ and how you as a business or brand can fulfill that need, and quickly. Be it the latest sports shoes, loungewear at home or new homeware products, everyone has a secret desire and adverts are a great way of enticing a broader audience in.

Numerous formats on numerous platforms

One of the great things about social media is there is something for everyone, and that is no different when considering social media advertising. You can break your audience down by demographic, content consumption, location, device or interests. If you are looking to attract an older consumer you might consider investing in Facebook, and if your content relies on more visual aesthetics then you might choose to utilize Instagram or Pinterest. For a more corporate audience, then your obvious choice is LinkedIn. Whatever your goals, there is likely to be a social media outlet to support them.

Increase lead generation

What matters most to your business – if we’re being totally honest – is revenue. Social media advertising campaigns can help turn engagement into sales for your business. A successful sales channel for many businesses, social media advertising allows you to go to the consumer instead of relying on the consumer to come to you.

Complex and custom retargeting options are available on platforms, allowing you to re-engage audiences who have previously only been top-of-funnel, driving them through to purchase and conversion. A retargeting strategy that is combined with the right copy and creative, supplemented with active community management will be what gets you the most efficient spend of your budget.

ROI for social media advertisement is almost unbeatable

The advertising tools available on platforms provide a level of targeting and personalized creative that can drive a far clearer ROI than that of a traditional media campaign, leading to instant results. Associated costs are also far lower, making driving traffic and purchases quick, easy and affordable for most businesses.

Insights, data and more information

Using social media advertising, you can find audiences you didn’t even know you needed. Some of the most valuable data for your business can come from social media advertising, with many platforms providing demographical data, giving real insight into how your adverts are performing and how they resonate with your target audience.

To find out more about our social media advertising services speak to a member of our team today.

Should I invest in paid social media advertising?

Coronavirus has completely thrown modern life’s corporate routines out the window. The threat of the virus has brought both the best and worst out of humankind, but we want to highlight the positive ways in which brands have shown their softer side and given back to their consumers during this difficult time.

Let’s kick off with Pret’s discount to all NHS staff. Large coffee shop chains often receive heavy criticism for dominating the high street and overcharging, so it is nice to see Pret making a small ‘thank you’ gesture to our hardworking medical staff.

Chelsea FC have taken an even bigger stand to thank our NHS staff, by opening up their hotel at Stanford Bridge. NHS staff are able to stay at the Millennium hotel for free with costs being covered by Roman Abramovich. This will be welcomed by those NHS staff who struggle to get back home after late night shifts and for those who have family members with Coronavirus symptoms, as they can now continue their vital work.

Supermarkets have been heavily documented during this crisis, as social media users have posted their outrage at the empty shelves. There has been a growing concern for the elderly who often cannot afford to bulk buy and shopping trips can be a very much needed social outlet for them. In response, Iceland stores have been dedicating 8-9am exclusively to elderly customers to help them beat the rush. Sainsbury’s have also announced they are offering the first hour of their trading day to the elderly and disabled, with Tesco’s following suit.

As more and more of us have been adjusting to working from home and with the prospect of lockdown looming, our physical health has been a point of conversation. To help, Reebok have offered to tailor a workout for users depending on the home equipment they use. This has involved a lot of community management for Reebok’s social media team and they have done a brilliant job – especially within the 280-character limit! We are all likely to up our screen time during this isolating period and this demonstrates how brands can interact with their consumers directly.

Our mental health is equally important during isolation and we’ve all heard the benefits of music for our mental wellbeing. As many stars have had to cancel tours and appearances, Coldplay’s Chris Martin and John Legend have both held live social media performances using the hashtag #TogetherAtHome, to show music will always be there to raise our spirits.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Chris played a mini gig at home earlier today on IG Live. @glblctzn @WHO @JohnLegend #TogetherAtHome

A post shared by Coldplay🌙☀️ (@coldplay) on

Instagram Live sessions give users the chance to comment live and interact with the stars, creating a sense of community. Furthermore, seeing stars take social distancing seriously is likely to influence a lot of their fans to do the same.

The future is uncertain, and brands are having to adapt and be creative to raise morale. It’s a stressful time for us all as the world adjusts to this pandemic but it is wonderful to see brands and celebrities banding together with their fans and consumers to create something positive.

The social media posts that brightened our week

Actions against the coronavirus pandemic have quite rightly been increased as the virus begins circulating around the world. There’s been a ban on virtually all sports around the globe, commuters have been asked to stay at home and work where possible, and some are having to self-isolate for a minimum of 14 days to protect our nation.

Almost a week has passed since we last saw 22 players chase after a football and for some that feels like a very long time. But as it’s a Friday and we’re all in need of some cheer, here are five of our favourite memes and social media clips from the world of football as it reacts to the postponement.

James Milner

Mr. Dependable, for almost the last two decades Milner has plied his trade in the Premier League, if you want a consistent and versatile performer, James Milner is top of your target list.

Unfortunately for James though, because of a Twitter parody account titled ‘Boring James Milner’, he’ll always be thought of as a dour Yorkshireman.  To his credit the real James has been more than happy to play up to the stereotype in the past.

Here he is rationing his Yorkshire Tea bags for the week ahead…

Alex Oxlade Chamberlain

What else is there to do when your self-isolating with your pop star girlfriend? The Liverpool playmaker and the Little Mix star; Perrie Edwards decided to keep themselves entertained with some amazing dance moves amid the disease epidemic.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Precautionary self isolation can be fun❗️

A post shared by Perrie Edwards ✌️🌻 (@perrieedwards) on

Southampton FC

Last Saturday was a weird day, no 3pm kick offs to look forward to, no goal notifications from BBC Sport pinging my phone and no Fantasy Football points to be won. But the Saints certainly took all three points for their reactive idea to continue to ‘live’ tweet the game as if it had gone ahead anyway.

Leyton Orient

Ah. The power of social media…The League Two club have showed off some real promotion form during the season hiatus. Reacting to Southampton FC’s idea, the O’s decided to create an online knock-out FIFA tournament with 63 other teams. To enter all a team needed to do was to reply to the original tweet (below). It’s proved to be a brilliant initiative from Leyton Orient and all the spots have been filled.

Stayed tuned to see who gets crowned the winner! #UltimateQuaranTeam

Clive Tyldesley

Clive has been ITV’s senior football commentator since 1998, what we don’t know about football probably isn’t worth knowing. But how does a high-profile commentator keep fresh and prepared for match days when there’s no games on?

By commentating from the kitchen of course!

We hope we’ve made you have a few laughs with the clips we’ve chosen, please stay safe and if you would like to learn more about our social media services then get in touch with us.

Coronavirus and the beautiful game

TikTok now has over one billion users and is available in over 150 countries with 8.7% of UK smartphone owners using TikTok; a huge increase from 1.8% in 2017.

But how can the Chinese app be applied to British trends and culture and effectively support your brand aims? Below are my three favourite UK brands who have jumped head-first into the video-sharing platform.

Superdrug

Whilst Superdrug’s Instagram feed is more stylised, their TikTok account shares behind-the-scenes of events and ‘how-to’s’ of products, which don’t appear on their other networks.

Their core content strand is sharing close-ups of new products. Unlike other social platforms, there are clear and drastic differences between their everyday posts (garnering thousands of views) and the ones which resonate well (garnering tens of thousands of views), such as their close-up of a Winky Lux lip tint which includes a real flower.

This stark change offers a clear insight into the interests of their audience, which can be used to influence their marketing strategy as a whole, more directly and clearly. What makes this particularly interesting, is that the post is not complex, or time-consuming to create, highlighting that this is not a requisite to have a successful TikTok channel.

@superdrugThis Winky Lux lip tint contains a REAL FLOWER 🌺😍 ##fyp ##lookofthedecade ##foryoupage ##tiktokuk♬ I’l Bring You Flowers – Prisoners Of Base

Alex Scott

Branding an individual on TikTok can be a more difficult task, as you have no products to constantly discuss. One key feature of TikTok which can be used as the basis of your strategy, however, is Soundtracks. These are short audio clips which anyone can upload, such as songs, or cultural moments from movies. Users then film visuals on top, with all clips being grouped together to easily watch in one go.

The audio which becomes popular is unpredictable, depending on the algorithm and the creativity of the user base. Kesha this month has released a lyric video for her song Cannibal (12 years after its release) due to the sudden interest of the track on TikTok.

Broadcaster Alex Scott recreated one humorous and iconic scene with EastEnders star Emma Barton from Pretty Woman, which is a popular soundtrack on the app. By following trends instead of trying to force one to start inorganically, Alex is seen as fun, and likeable.

Movember

Traditionally, social networks do not like users sharing their time on other platforms, and so they will limit sharing functionalities. When Instagram was bought by Facebook for example, Instagram removed the function for their images to be posted on Twitter. However, TikTok is unique in that it makes sharing incredibly easy, with a download function within the app, allowing for viral sharing across platforms.

Movember recently teamed up with TikTok, so the platform will donate £1 for every moustache themed TikTok using #Movember. As sharing videos is such an easy task, this message can have a drastically higher reach compared to posting on just one channel alone, especially when viral TikTok’s are regularly reshared on Twitter and Instagram Stories.

As a relatively new channel, TikTok can feel out of place in your existing social strategy. However, it’s not going anywhere anytime soon, and so now is the time to experiment, explore and consider.

Contact our Social team today to discuss how TikTok can become part of your online strategy.

The potential of TikTok for your UK brand

Tell us about your experience to date and your background

I’ve been in web development for over six years now and although it’s relatively plain sailing, it didn’t start out like that! I initially studied Environmental Sustainability at Leeds University but when I graduated, I realised it wasn’t an area I wanted a career in. After a few months of temping and job searching, I ended up quitting my temp job and telling my family and friends I was going to teach myself web development.

The initial reception wasn’t the best, but I knew there was a career in it and it was something I enjoyed. I worked hard to learn what I needed and after a while things started to happen thanks to a few friends putting me in touch with my first clients, those of whom I now owe a lot too.

The first couple of websites included a lot of learning on the job but the clients were happy, and the end product was good. From there, I was given more freelance work at a web development agency based in Leatherhead who after a few months with them, offered me a full-time job. It was here that I learnt most of what I know today thanks to some fantastic (and patient!) mentors. I then moved to The PHA Group, where I’ve been for the past three years. During my time here I’ve had the pleasure of building numerous client websites some of which you can see here – and also working on internal projects such as the website you’re viewing at the moment. After six years in web development, I’m still eager to continue learning, developing my skill set and helping The PHA Group’s clients bring their ideas to life.

What role did you play in The PHA Group rebrand?

During The PHA Group rebrand I worked on building the website you’re on at the moment! This included working closely with the design team to ensure that it behaved and looked exactly as required. It is an ever-evolving website and new features and design changes are often proposed to which the design team will mockup for sign off, and I can begin its development. Recently this has included integrating the ‘Careers’ section (https://thephagroup.com/careers) into our third party HR software which helped remove some of the manual labour for the HR team.

If you had to choose two of your favourite projects you’ve worked on during your time at PHA, which would you choose?

All the websites I’ve worked on have provided unique challenges and been fun to work on in their own way. As such, it’s hard to pick just two, but a few projects that stick out, include; www.nomochoc.com who’s unique header design took a lot of planning but the end product was great. Another fun site was https://patientory.com/ which I enjoyed building because of its sleek, modern design. More recently, I’ve been working on a site which showcases films and videos for talent within the film industry, and so it involves working with a lot of fantastic video content which is always fun to work on.

You take on a variety of different projects from clients, what would be your one piece of advice to an aspiring developer?

I would say the best way to learn web development would be to ‘persevere with your learning’. There are definitely times when you’ll want to give up on it after a day of trying to get CSS to do what you’d expect, but if you really want it then to keep plugging away and things will eventually start to stick. I would say that also it’s important to focus on one technology at a time, otherwise you’ll be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of learning resources available. A good order to learn front end development would be to learn HTML, CSS, JS and then move into a CMS such as WordPress. (That was more than one bit of advice… Sue me!)

Finally, what website trends do you expect to see playing a major role in 2020?

In regard to design there is definitely a growing trend in a certain retro aesthetic that I’m personally not fond of, but generally involves large text, bold simple colour schemes and animations as you scroll. A few websites that I’ve found on the first page of a site aggregator (www.siteinspire.com) that are good examples include https://blackfuturism2019.xyz/, https://www.festivalcontours.fr/, https://hallobasis.com/. This style of website often rely heavily on JavaScript libraries such as three.js which accommodate complex animations for example – https://stuuudio.co/. I can imagine the retro trend in web design will eventually disappear, but animations are here to stay.

From a development perspective, headless CMS’s are growing in popularity which is essentially where you decouple the front and back end of your website which generally allows for improved speed, performance and scalability of a website. This includes using a frontend framework such as React or Vue and then a CMS system such as https://wordpress.org/ or https://www.netlify.com/.

 

If you would like to find out about our design services then please get in touch with us today.

Meet our people; Tom Hoadley

For business owners, saving money is always a priority. But sometimes it’s best not to cut corners in certain aspects of your business, especially when it comes to your logo.

A logo is one of the most important things about your branding. This will help your customers to recognise you and communicate your message with just one image. A logo should be much more than a simple image to fill space on your business card or website. Ideally, it is a visual representation of what your company stands for and its values.

Below are a few examples of why DYI logos might not be the best idea for your business.

Not so simple after all

Your logo is the face of your brand. This is the first thing people see when they go to your website or search for you on social media and ideally, you’d like people to recognise it at first sight. An efficient logo design not only has the power to communicate what you stand for, but also makes an impactful first impression and helps you stand out from the competition.

Some logos might look simple to you but in fact required years of work. Let’s take the McDonald’s logo as an example. You would recognise this logo anywhere, not just on top of one of their restaurants, but in an advert, merchandising etc. To you, this might just be a simple “M” but to them, it’s more than that. The McDonald’s logo is symbolic of the arches that were the substance of the newly constructed architecture of the first franchised restaurant in 1952. The Golden colour represents the famous arches of its first franchised restaurant, while the red colour represents the food industry of this company.

With this example, it becomes clear that what looks simple to the eye is almost certainly crafted to make the best use of white space, with carefully chosen fonts, complementary colourings. A professional graphic designer will know about your industry, what colour represents it and what would catch their attention so it’s always good to listen to what they have to say.

Versatility

In graphic design, versatility is key. How will your logo look on a business card or on your Twitter feed? How will it look if you do a large version on a billboard or on TV advert? A professional graphic designer will make sure you can use your logo everywhere, from your website, to a billboard or print. Every medium requires a different format which some DYI platforms don’t allow you to do. A graphic designer will also create different variations of your logo so you can use it on social media, or on your website or embed with new business presentations. It only takes them a few hours when it could take you a few days to recreate all your variations. Graphic designers use tools such as Photoshop and Illustrator to create logos which are bespoke to you and your business.

We worked with Lifestyle brand AudreyStyle to create their logo and branding. The goal was to create something for their website and social media channels that could also be adapted for their production line as well. Audreystle wanted to ensure the new branding represented the boutique businesses tone and audience. The team created a monogram and logotype that incorporated the values and quality Audreystyle liked to reflect. Read all about our work here.

What do you stand for?

As we said earlier, a simple look is important to make your logo stand out but it is also equally important that it relates to what your business or organisation actually does and stands for. Therefore, having someone detached from the business can be helpful as they will look at your organisation with a different perspective. If you’re the owner, you’ll know all about your company, but you might not know what people internally and externally think. A professional could help you understand your brand and show you the best way to present that through imagery.

We worked with a start-up gym called Body Society where we were tasked to look at their branding. Starting from scratch we looked at how this brand could be positioned within a flooded market; how we could make this gym bespoke from its competitors and how we could make it more appealing to gym goers. Working on concepts and theme ideas to begin with, we started to shape the personality for the band by working out the unique selling points and positioning they had within the market. This then slowly created a channel of vision in which multiple ideas for logo and identity were explored. Read more about our work with Body Society here.

Colours, design, everything is as important in a logo but don’t forget the font. A professional will be able to find the best font for your business, when you think of businesses like Coca Cola their typeface is so iconic it has become its own branding. It is also easy to read and legible on various formats. When choosing what font best represents you and your business think about how you will be using it as it can differ from device, platform and outlet!

To learn more about how we can help you and your business get your brand on point, get in touch today.

Why you shouldn’t DIY it when it comes to your brand’s logo

In January, Instagram Stories reached 500 million daily active users (Statista), and we can see why! The platform’s features allow consumers to connect with friends and brands creatively but we were surprised to see that the launch of the new Quiz Sticker saw very few accounts taking the plunge. In time, we feel this Sticker could have several benefits for brands, helping to further their online goals.

The Instagram Quiz Sticker is simple to grasp. Users write a question (or Instagram can offer you random inspiration), alongside 2-4 answers. This is placed on top of an existing image, or a block colour. Viewers of this Sticker then click their answer, and instantly see whether they were correct. Whilst we do encourage your brand to play around with this feature to see what is effective for you, there are universal ideas to consider.

Instagram poll stories

Reinforcing core brand values – what will your quiz answers be?

Every brand will have key messages they want fans to recall. A tagline, statistic, USP. The Quiz Sticker will reveal if your customers are retaining these messages. We recommend making your quiz answers hard – customers will then feel rewarded when they answer correctly, or curious, resulting in them wanting to know more about your brand. We really enjoyed seeing influencer Luke Christian asking his followers to guess his celebrity icon – not only will this reveal audience perceptions of him, but also opens up a conversation around why viewers chose the answers they did.

Luke Christian - Influencer Instagram polls

Reveal new aspects of your business

Instagram Stories last for 24 hours, and thus offer a more informal tone for more casual topics. Not every post online should be a direct sell to your product. For example, how do you want your consumers to feel about you? Whether this is funny, warm or premium, Stories offer a platform to utilise other aspects not suitable for a main feed. Whilst Save The Student’s main Instagram feed is (rightly) full of top tips and memes, on their Stories, followers were asked how old the office dog is. This simple question reveals that this is not just a business, but a group of people who have their own lives. How could personal quiz questions such as this change perceptions of your brand?

In summary, Instagram Stickers allow a certain amount of vulnerability for brands. They can reveal what consumers like and do not like but there is minimal value in your quiz answers being obvious – what value will ‘Yes!’ and ‘YESSSS!’, offer you or your customers? This new Sticker, used correctly, will reveal new insights about your audience – and could be the most beneficial part of your Instagram strategy.

Looking to up your Stories game? Get in touch with PHA Social with your aims and we can create examples that best match your brand’s personality.

Our predictions for the Instagram Quiz Sticker

After months of back and forth with your CEO and persuading them it’s time to bring your outdated website into the 21st century, the project has finally been signed off. You’re eager to get going, so you spend some time clarifying what you want and then send out your brief to a list of potential web development teams. You get a stack of proposals back but are left scratching your head how to decide who would be the best fit for your project.

Below is a list of what to look out for when choosing a reliable, high-end web development team and be confident that they will create you a website to be proud of.

A stickler for detail

During the research, design and build stages the devil is in the detail. As such, a team with great communication is necessary. Find someone who asks questions and strives to understand your vision and what you are trying to achieve as the better their understanding is, the smoother the project will be.

For our most recent build, our client Morgan Dairy required some complicated functionality, namely a delivery postcode checker and a product ordering form. We had to ensure that each of these were working exactly as expected which we achieved by sending prototypes for them to test and confirm it was what they envisioned.

Astute

Before choosing a development team, try to establish how astute they are. Do they show an ability to accurately assess situations and projects? Are they saying no to everything you are suggesting? Or maybe they say yes to everything? The truth is, it’s not possible to create an all singing all dancing website, within record speed timing and at an insanely low price. Anyone who says it is, likely doesn’t understand the project or is just trying to get their hands on your hard-earned money. As such, it’s always worth using your own common sense to think whether they will be able to deliver on exactly what they’ve promised. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

One such client that we were keen to help was Helen and Douglas charity whom we created two bespoke stages for their project timeline. The first being a website with events booking, custom campaign pages, a blog and more. The second being the website with donation functionality. This helped to ensure that realistic expectations were set at the start of the project and that a polished, quality product was delivered.

An eye for design

A crucial element when deciding between web development teams is to ensure they have a keen eye for design. The best way to ensure this is to go through their previous design work with a fine-toothed comb. If they can demonstrate skill and provide insight into the type of work you can expect from them, you’re off to a good start.

One such project where we were keen to ensure that the latest in design patterns were utilized was with our client Patientory. We implemented a clean, modern design with appropriately placed user interactions for an added element of fun ensuring to stay on brand and engage the potential clients.

Coding skills

As a client, these ones can be slightly harder to foresee but you can generally get an idea by looking at the existing portfolio. Alternatively, you could ask them about the technology stack they’ll be using and why they use it. You could even get in touch with some of their previous clients to help form your opinion on this.  Generally, if their portfolio examples websites work as you would expect them to, you should be in good hands

Willingness to learn

Does the web development team show a willingness to learn and try new things? Are they suggesting adding exciting features to your site, or maybe that it would be a great time to implement new cutting-edge technology? If so, it’s likely you have a team of passionate web developers on your hands who will strive to create you a website to be proud of.

If you would like to talk to our Studio team about website design or build, then please get in touch with a member of our award-winning team today. We’d love to start bringing your idea to life.

Website development – what to look out for

April Fool’s Day is an exciting time for marketers. Many brands cleverly tweak their tone of voice online to great effect. Acting in a slightly goofier fashion can reveal the human side of a brand, making them more relatable and personable. This day can inspire all, including those who do not have the budget for traditional stunts – simple yet effective visuals can spark the imagination of your customer base and make them remember you.

Below are PHA Social’s favourite April Fool’s day gags from 2019, as well as our 3 top tips on how to make your audience giggle next year!

  1. Being directly funny isn’t the only option

A lot of brands seemed to default to the traditional gag of releasing fake products, however, this doesn’t have to be the only way to cut through the April Fool’s noise. This day is about being light-hearted – what would you like your customers to know about your brand that you may have difficulty saying normally?

Whilst we might have expected The Muppets to tell a joke, we felt their simple acknowledgement of the day was light-hearted and warm – it reminded us of how the Muppets make us feel.  Could you use April Fool’s for a similar effect with your workplace or employees, reminding customers of the friendly faces behind the brand?

  1. Respond to ongoing conversation surrounding your brand

Some conversations/feelings around your brand will not be appropriate to respond to when they appear casually throughout the year. However, April Fool’s day is an opportunity to engage in this conversation, due to the relaxed environment social media supports. Duolingo is iconic for its repetitive notifications. Their video announcing Duolingo Push was able to merge all the conversations surrounding this feature into a light-hearted piece that shows they not only listen to their audience, but they also acknowledge a comical part of their business.

Introducing Duolingo Push

The moment you've all been d̶r̶e̶a̶d̶i̶n̶g̶ waiting for…Introducing Duolingo Push! We're taking notifications out of your phone and into the real world. That's right: Duo the Owl will literally show up to remind you to practice so you never miss a day of language learning again.Try it today: https://push.duolingo.com

Posted by Duolingo on Monday, April 1, 2019

On the flip side, some online pranks will spark new conversation surrounding your brand, revealing gaps in your product catalogue. Love Hearts Sour Hearts feels like a perfect anti-product to us, which many could relate too!

  1. Do not admit you know it’s April Fool’s Day

For many, April 1st is a normal day, and so there are plenty of genuine articles and content posted online. The art of this holiday is to blend your jokes so that they appear (largely) natural and authentic. If you have someone in your comments saying, ‘this has to be an April fool’s, surely!’, then you have succeeded in creating a mystery – and your engagement will grow from this confusion. Caffé Nero was able to successfully maintain their sophisticated style whilst establishing this illusion by utilising Instagram stories. They ‘announced’ that ‘due to a manufacturing issue’, their chocolate cups had to be recalled.

#AprilFools

Due to a manufacturing issue we have had to recall our chocolate cups. Sorry for any inconvenience caused. #AprilFools

Posted by Caffè Nero on Friday, March 29, 2019

April Fool’s day should not be seen as a difficult part of your marketing calendar. Listen to your audience, be bold, try something different and monitor the results so learnings can be applied to the next campaign. Just remember that important, genuine posts should be avoided on this day or you could encounter the same response that Theresa May’s announcement of a higher living wage had on Monday.

If you would you like to capitalise on national days such as April Fool’s Day in the future, get in touch with PHA Social to discuss how we can help people discover your brand in a fun and creative way.

How to maximise your April Fools’ online content

Whether you’re a developer who has been writing code or a designer who’s worked on putting together a dazzling design, launching a new website is always an exciting time. Seeing the fruits of your labour is something you’ve been eagerly waiting for and equally desperate to share.

But before you rush into pushing it live, have you double checked the details? Does all your imagery have alt text? Do the meta-descriptions accurately describe your content?

As Senior Web Developer here at The PHA Group, I’ve worked on numerous websites such as the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation or the health IT company, Patientory. Here are my five top things to check before launching a website.

Mobile responsiveness

Based off of 2 Trillion site visits in the US in 2017 from 2016 the percentage of visits from mobile devices grew from 57% to 63% comprehensively beating desktop which made up the difference (37%). Mobile also saw a significant drop in bounce rate from 52% to 47%, whilst the time people spent on a site on mobile grew from 40% to 49%. If you didn’t know it by now, mobile is on the rise. Make sure your site is fully functioning on it and performs just as well as on desktop. Accelerated mobile landing pages should appear on your to-do list.

Testing in multiple browsers

Remember not everyone who visits your site will be using the same browser. From Chrome to Firefox to Internet Explorer, you need to ensure your site is consistent. For us at PHA that involves testing it in all modern browsers including Internet Explorer 9. In recent years, we have stopped catering for Internet Explorer 8 and below since Microsoft ended its support for them.

Have you added in analytics?

Without analytics, you’ll lose out on valuable data on your site. You won’t be able to track how many visitors you have on your site, what content they’ve been engaging in, how long did they spend on your site, did they make an enquiry through the website, and so much more. Trust us on this one, get it in before launch and you’ll save yourself a headache later. Analytics is also a really insightful tool for your communication and marketing teams. They can use this to understand your customer base and help make your targeting and decisions more informed.

Search engines

Have you allowed your site to be indexed by search engines? If you launch your website and it’s still blocking indexing, you may be left scratching your head as to where all your visitors are. It’s simple they can’t find you! On WordPress, it’s important to ensure you’ve unticked the ‘Search Engine Visibility’ tick box in the admin panel. Once you’ve ensured there’s nothing blocking them, to speed up the process you should always submit your site URL to search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo.

Is the client happy?

Arguably the most important thing on this list. Before going live, make sure to take your client through every page of the site and straightened out any issues before it’s noticed by their customers. Once the clients happy and you’ve dotted the i’s and crossed the t’s you will be able to share you and your team’s hard work with the world!

If you would like to talk to our Studio team about a website design or build, then please get in touch with a member of our award-winning team today. We’d love to bring your ideas to life.

5 things to check before a website launch