Weekly Roundup #64 – Difficult Customers, Google Store Visits & Email Templates

Last week we spoke about Google and its biased information, Facebook desperately copying Snapchat, and discussed whether or not virtual reality is even relevant to us marketers yet. Get all the gossip here.

Otherwise, if you’re all up to date here’s what we have for you this week:

  • – How to deal with difficult customers on social media. Because every marketer gets a flashback from that one tragic public display of rage they had to deal with and had no idea how to deal with it. 
  • – 3 important marketing stats you need to know this week in a one minute quick fire round.
  • – Google has now tracked 4 billion store visits using online ad data. You can find out how they did it below. 
  • – Learn how to push your branding through free trials but weed out all the opportunists who are in it for a meal ticket. 
  • – We answer the question on the email marketers mind: “Where tf can I get new email templates now that I’ve exhausted my usual one?”

Let’s go!


How to Deal With Difficult Customers on Social Media

customer complaints social media


Social media is like a public complaints department where everyone is watching and waiting for your response. The way you deal with difficult customers on social media platforms says a lot about who you are as a business and every witness will make the assumption they will be treated the same – so it’s best that you get it right. Here are some tips on how to deal with difficult customers on social media:

Stay Aware

In order to deal with a difficult customer you have to first know that they’re being difficult. There are a few tools we can recommend to keep you in the know if your business is being littered with bad reviews. For example, you can set up a Google Alert of your brand name to keep track of when people are mentioning you (this is a free tool and a good place to start).

The next tool you can use is Mention. This keeps you aware of every time you’re mentioned across the web. It enables you to monitor in real time any keywords or hashtags people are using across the net. Review sites can take a lot of time to sift through, but every now and then you should search yourself on them and keep an eye out for any unsavoury content. Better yet, if you’re aware of the kinds of forums your customers potentially use, check those every now and then to see who’s talking about you.

Don’t Be a Robot

When you do find this complaint, whatever you do – be a human. No one likes a cookie cutter response to a complaint as it makes them feel unimportant. As marketers begin to focus more on metrics than engagement, if there’s ever a time to take that branding away, it’s now. Be genuine and empathetic. The only thing worse than completely ignoring a complaint is giving them an identical response that you give to everyone else. It’s recommended to introduce yourself as a member of the business, for example, “Hi there, this is Phillip, from Spot Studio…” It will immediately calm the situation as the person knows they aren’t dealing with a machine, but another person.

Making It Right

Sometimes there comes a point where, if it’s not just a simple misunderstanding, you just need to apologise. Own up to your mistake. Don’t ever try to blame a customer. You can alert them to a possible miscommunication down the line they might have missed, but if they haven’t then you must just take responsibility. A simple, meaningful apology can go a long way. And if an apology isn’t good enough for your critic, if it’s possible to offer an exchange or refund, then that should silence them pretty quickly. You can’t argue with a full refund. Do whatever it takes to make it right, but at the same time, know when to take the flack and know when you do have the power to make it right regardless.



Pushing Your Brand Through Free Trials

graze free box

Source: Graze


A common way to get interested customers hooked on your service is through a free trial. Everyone seems to be doing it these days, from music services to healthy sweet providers – everyone is trying it out. Humans are creatures of habit, and once they’re used to using your service and better yet, enjoying it – it’s hard for them to give it up. It seems like a win win for both parties, but there’s always a price to pay when using this tactic. The Money Advice Service reported that four in ten Brits continue to pay for a subscription they’re not using, costing us collectively £338m a month. It might not seem like an issue, but it isn’t building long term loyal customers and your brand might end up a source of stress to the customer.

Let’s take a look at some key examples of people doing it right:


The healthy snack subscription service has managed to use free trials whilst keeping opportunists at bay, stopping customers from ordering one box then cancelling swiftly. They do this by offering both the first and the fifth boxes of snacks for free. From a consumer behaviour point of view, it’s successful because of the perceived instant gratification from receiving both immediate free stuff and then tangible free stuff in the future as a reward. It establishes a long enough period of time for Graze to become a regular part of the customer’s life, reinforcing habit.


spotify free trial


Spotify is a pretty iconic example of how a free trial can work really well. They work on value through sudden deprivation. They have been instrumental in driving the music industry away from physical ownership and into instant access of music. They have over 100m active users and now 50m of those are paying for the privilege of the Spotify perks (downloading to listen offline, being able to skip tracks, no ads). Their free 30 day trial of its premium service works pretty well by offering all the good stuff for an amount of time where the user is suddenly denied all of these privileges and once they know the difference between paid and unpaid – most just want to pay. It makes you miss them.


eve mattress


Eve is so damn sure of its mattress quality it’s willing to place a bet that you won’t return the mattress after sleeping on it 100 times. This only really works best with physical products more than a trial and purchase digital sort of deal, but it’s a concept that could be applicable to you. It’s an effective trial for physical products because once a customer is accustomed to an everyday product such as a mattress, not many are willing to go through the hassle and risk of not only returning, but buying a new mattress.

The tactic of free trials is a tricky one to master since you have to stay away from opportunists looking for a free deal, but also ensure your new customers become loyal ones. Keeping your new customers past the free trial period is done by using and tapping into their behaviours to your own benefit.




3 Marketing Stats You Need to Know This Week

You know we love a good quick fire round here at Spot Studio, so here are some marketing stats we rounded up and thought you should know about – all of which you can learn in a minute. Nice.

Mobile customers are more intolerant of bad user experiences. A report by Fetch suggests that brands should consider shifting their mobile advertising to focus on emerging markets as levels of engagement rapidly increase. 31% of users in emerging markets define themselves as ‘mobile first’ compared to the 15% in Europe and 18% in North America. Similarly 66% of European customers claim to access social media every hour and this is set to rise to 72% in the emerging markets. But most importantly those mobile-first consumers in emerging markets are more intolerant of bad mobile web experiences with 84% of them saying they’d leave a mobile site if it moved slowly compared to the 69% in Europe and 75% in North America.

62% of consumers will stick to premium if prices rise post-Brexit. The Centre for Retail Research and Rakuten Marketing suggest that consumers have differing views of how the referendum result will affect prices in the UK. A survey of 1,000 consumers found that in the UK over the next 6 months, 37% of people believe they’ll be better off and 40% think they’ll be worse off. Regardless of this the survey found that people will not stop purchasing premium products if prices rise as a result of Brexit. Only 6% of people wouldn’t continue to buy if prices went up. Interesting.

YouTube is the best for consumer positivity. Trinity McQueen has released a new study and according to it, YouTube tops the list of media brands that people feel most positively about. In the survey of ‘unbound consumers’ (people who reject scheduled media for on-demand services), 21% cited that they feel positively about YouTube, followed by BBC at 20% and Netflix at 16%. New content is the brand’s key factor in popularity with 46% of respondents most likely to believe YouTube always has new content.




Google Has Tracked 4 Billion Store Visits from Ads


The company has claimed that thousands more advertisers will gain access to store visit data as a result of their improved measurement techniques and machine-learning modelling. Google has been raping efforts to tie clicks on ads to store traffic. And recently it claimed it had captured over 4 billion store visits after users had clicked on an add, up from 4 billion less than a year ago. And they’re set to rapidly expand this number.

In September Google extended the now two-year old store visits measurement program to ads on the Display Network and said it had statistically significant visibility into visits to 200 million stores globally. It is now positioned to make store visits data available to thousands more advertisers due to its advancements in several components of the measurement process, it claims.

It bases store visits on aggregated anonymised data from users who opt into Location History tracking on their phones, Google Surveys and mapping technology. In the past month the company says it has shifted to using deep learning models that can train on larger data sets to increase accuracy in prioritising location signals. Kishore Kanakamedala, the director of product management for online-to-offline solutions wrote in a blog post,


“This allows us to reliably measure more store visits in contexts that are typically tricky, such as in multi-story malls and dense geographies where many business locations are situated close to each other.”


Recent improvements include a refresh of Google Street View and Google Earth view images to get up-to-date views of where buildings begin and end, as well as a global effort to scan WiFi strength in more buildings to determine business boundaries. Google does survey some users to verify the locations they’v visited, and reconciles that feedback against its predictions to continue training the models. It also claims it now has teams that conduct in-person audits and site visits to provide more data.



Places to Get Awesome Email Templates

email tempaltes


You could either be new to email marketing, or you could just be looking for inspiration on how to spruce up your existing ones. Either way we’ve got a list of places online where you can get email newsletter templates:


litmus email templates


These guys have a free email template collection ranging from newsletter templates to account management templates. The marketing-specific theme ‘Pook’ is sleek and modern yet still kinda fun. All of the templates have already been tested with Litmus and you can easily check how they’ll appear in different email clients. It’s also free.

Visit Litmus


99designs email


This is a growing online community and a collaboration platform for small businesses and designers. To celebrate the launch of their Email Design category, the company ran a contest asking designers to create three email templates – a promotional template, email notifications template and a newsletter template using a set colour scheme for people to download. The peeps at 99design then chose their 12 favourites and made them downloadable for free. And the best part is that they’re compatible with all major email clients.

Visit 99designs


themeforest email

This is the place to go if you want to be extra about it and have a budget to spend on your email templates. They have over 460 newsletter templates in different styles, colours and themes and they’re using a 4 star rating system so you can filter by rating, recency, price and popularity. There are so many to choose from it’s like the eBay of email templates. The benefit of a paid template is that chances are your email is much more likely to stand out from the rest as marketers will always opt for a cheaper solution – but hey, if you’ve got the dolla make it rain.

Visit ThemeForest

Do you have a resource for email templates you want to share with us? Then tell us about it and we’ll feature you on our blog.



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Sebastian Paszek

Marketing manager

Controlling the chaos of the digital landscape, Sebastian is a multiplatform executive, project manager and photographer.