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Methods of developing sustainable growth

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Methods of developing sustainable growth | The Thaiger
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PHUKET: In six months, Thanyapura has doubled web traffic and engagement with our audience. But how did we do this? Is it possible for anyone to do so? These are all questions we were asking several months ago when we turned a corner in our marketing efforts and began to look at different strategies to make sure we saw growth, even in low season.

Understanding the needs of our customers, both online and offline, was essential to our level of growth in the past six months.

In the past, our focus was purely on promoting what we were doing, which was good for keeping our audience, but it didn’t help us develop sustainable growth.

We began making these changes at the beginning of May when we saw an average of 2,869 weekly sessions. Today, we are averaging 7,802 weekly sessions.

Thanyapura used these four methods to help double web traffic in six months:

BUILDING A BETTER EXPERIENCE ONLINE

It is important that potential customers not only find you online, but can also easily navigate through your website. This is why one of Thanyapura’s main priorities was running a full audit on the website.

We addressed this by: Removing 404 errors – Nothing can result in a more frustrating user experience than to navigate through a site only to arrive at a dead end. As a site matures, it is natural to restructure. It is key to redirect this traffic.

Interlinking – Connecting users to related content is important. It also works as a useful Search Engine Optimization (SEO) tool and can be rewarded in your overall score with search engines such as Google.

Being Mobile Friendly – Google recently updated their search algorithm to favor sites that are mobile friendly. If you haven’t done this yet, it’s a must, especially with over 50 per cent of our audience now accessing us and most sites via mobile devices.

CREATING QUALITY CONTENT

Thanyapura is a sports facility with an emphasis on triathlon, swimming and cycling. However, when we began to broaden our content to include fitness, wellness and weight loss we saw an overwhelming response.

This was the content our users really felt engaged with. It became important for us to reach out to our audience with the content they found desirable. It was content they could use in their lives and therefore, became a valuable asset to them.

BECOMING MORE SOCIAL

At Thanyapura, our main focus was to capture audiences across a range of social media platforms, which included YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Stumbleupon, Pinterest, Facebook, and Google+. In doing this, we had to focus on our storytelling skills and create unique and relatable content for each platform.

By building a following and loyal fan base, we became increasingly accessible to new customers as well as managing to retain our existing audience who have become ambassadors for our brand. They do this by freely sharing, commenting and liking pictures and stories we publish on our platforms, which builds our audience even more.

Social media is a wonderful tool to connect B2C and we expect this to grow over the next few months.

GEOTARGETING FOR LOCAL SUCCESS

It is very easy to target a broad audience when building a content marketing strategy and neglect your local target market. The very first thing we did to address this issue was to search for Thanyapura on a local level.

We made sure that Thanyapura could be found when someone was searching for Asia, Southeast Asia or Phuket for all of the things we offer. This did not happen overnight. It meant editing a range of content we already had and including alt tags on images, H2 headers, keyword placement and other tricks of the SEO trade.

By geo-targeting our primary pages for services offered in the local area, we were able to build awareness in the local community.

Additional reporting by Aaron Franklin and Isaac Congdon.

— Lauren Wafer-Kiddle

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Governments & old media versus social media – who will win? | VIDEO

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Governments & old media versus social media – who will win? | VIDEO | The Thaiger

We look at the recent changes made by the Australian and Indian governments to except control over the world’s biggest social media platforms. India has issued strict new rules for Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms just weeks after the Indian government attempted to pressure Twitter to take down social media accounts it deemed, well, anti social. There is now an open battle between the rise of social media platforms and the governments and ‘old’ media that have been able to maintain a certain level of control over the ‘message’ for the last century. Who will win?

The rules require any social media company to create three roles within India… a “compliance officer” who ensures they follow local laws; a “grievance officer” who addresses complaints from Indian social media users; and a “contact person” who can actually be contacted by lawyers and other aggrieved Indian parties… 24/7.

The democratisation of the news model, with social media as its catalyst, will continue to baffle traditional media and governments who used to enjoy a level of control over what stories get told. The battles of Google and Facebook, with the governments of India and Australia will be followed in plenty of other countries as well.

At the root of all discussions will be the difference between what governments THINK social media is all about and the reality about how quickly the media landscape has changed. You’ll get to read about it first, on a social media platform… probably on the screen you’re watching this news story right now.

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The social media giants in battle with ‘old’ media and world governments | VIDEO

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The social media giants in battle with ‘old’ media and world governments | VIDEO | The Thaiger

“The rules signal greater willingness by countries around the world to rein in big tech firms such as Google, Facebook and Twitter that the governments fear have become too powerful with little accountability.”

India has issued strict new rules for Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms just weeks after the Indian government attempted to pressure Twitter to take down social media accounts it deemed, well, anti social.

The rules require any social media company to create three roles within India… a “compliance officer” who ensures they follow local laws; a “grievance officer” who addresses complaints from Indian social media users; and a “contact person” who can actually be contacted by lawyers and other aggrieved Indian parties… 24/7.

The companies are also being made to publish a compliance report each month with details about how many complaints they’ve received and the action they took.

They’ll also be required to remove ‘some’ types of content including “full or partial nudity,” any “sexual act” or “impersonations including morphed images”

The democratisation of the news model, with social media as its catalyst, will continue to baffle traditional media and governments who used to enjoy a level of control over what stories get told.

The battles of Google and Facebook, with the governments of India and Australia will be followed in plenty of other countries as well.

At the root of all discussions will be the difference between what governments THINK social media is all about and the reality about how quickly the media landscape has changed. You’ll get to read about it first, on a social media platform… probably on the screen you’re watching this news story right now.

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Never miss out on future posts by following The Thaiger.

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Turbulence ahead for Thailand’s aviation industry | VIDEO

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Turbulence ahead for Thailand’s aviation industry | VIDEO | The Thaiger

When the airlines, in particular, were asking the government to put their hands in their pockets for some relief funding in August last year, it was genuinely thought that international tourists would be coming back for the high season in December and January. At the very least local tourists and expats would head back to the skies over the traditional holiday break. And surely the Chinese would be back for Chinese New Year?

As we know now, none of that happened. A resurge in cases started just south of Bangkok on December 20 last year, just before Christmas, kicking off another round of restrictions, pretty much killing off any possibility of a high season ‘bump’ for the tourist industry. Airlines slashed flights from their schedule, and hotels, which had dusted off their reception desks for the surge of tourists, shut their doors again.

Domestically, the hotel business saw 6 million room nights in the government’s latest stimulus campaign fully redeemed. But the air ticket quota of 2 million seats still has over 1.3 million seats unused. Local tourists mostly skipped flights and opted for destinations within driving distance of their homes.

As for international tourism… well that still seems months or years away, even now.

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