Imagine: you click on an ad banner. You’re taken to the page below. Now what should you do?
If your response is “I am going to click on every page until I figure out what I am supposed to do”, congratulations, you are Nokia’s target customer!
If you answered, “I do not know" or "I would exit the page / hit back in my browser”, you probably understand that there is something wrong here.
A big issue we’ll tackle today is funneling users to do specific actions, and optimizing each step to maximize results. In Nokia’s campaign with Zing, they want users to:
- Click on an advertisement banner (Promotion)
- Download the Zing MP3 Symbian application from Nokia’s Ovi Store (Initiate Trial Use)
- Write a review about their app experience (Real Consumer Product Testimonials)
- Promote Awareness of that Review (Enabling Social Media / Viral Sharing)
In more general terms, Nokia and Zing want mobile users to try the application, share their experience about it, and get these testimonials viewed by many people. This then influences others to understand that the app is great, to also download it, and on a more subtle point, understand that it is one of many great apps available when you buy a Nokia phone.
The concept behind the campaign is simple to understand. It’s also good - it’s the execution that is lacking. Let’s discuss optimizing the execution, in terms of:
- Maximizing the number of users who participate (using the application)
- The numbers of people influenced by the participants (make it easy for friends to tell other friends about the app)
- The power of that influence (reviews are persuasive enough to generate additional new conversions)
(Side Note: I won’t talk about the terrible usability of the Ovi Store as I don’t think Nokia’s Marketing Department has any control over it. We will focus on the non-Ovi Store components instead.)
Step 1: Click on an advertisement banner (Promotion)
I’ve seen this banner appear both at the bottom and the top of various Zing pages. The banner is not terrible, but it’s not great. I would suggest taking more advantage of the space, making the text message larger so it’s easier to read and stands out. The current text of “Listen to hot music, receive great prizes” is generic and doesn’t really present personal value of why I should click it, particularly because if I’m on Zing MP3, I’m already listening to hot music. Clicking on an ad to do more of the same seems like an extra hassle.
I suggest something like, “listen to all your favorite music on your phone for free, win great prizes!”. This text is more related to the actual campaign, but more importantly, creates a better value proposition for the user in the sense of “I can listen to music on my phone for free? Normally, I have have to pay for ringtones or I have to manually upload music from my computer, which can be tiresome. This seems interesting. I’ll click.”
If you want to increase visibility for a specific phone in the banner, show a larger version of the phone that’s clear to see instead of 4 smaller versions that get blended in with the music symbols and color.
While the banner is important, where the user is taken after he clicks on it is equally as important. If you lose him after the banner click, there is no success. Ideally, the landing page is something attractive that continues the message of the banner so the user doesn’t get lost. If you’re reading this, you already know that the below is not it:
This page should be introducing the application, getting people excited about listening to music on their mobile phones as well as the ability to win prizes. Instead, the user sees a long text page (even the links in the text are not colored and not clickable) of rules and regulations. Very boring and confusing.
Thus, we’re now at:
Step 2. Download the Zing MP3 Symbian application from Nokia’s Ovi Store (Convert Trial Use)
If you go to the main page of the promotion, it is certainly more visually attractive than the Rules page, but this isn’t the right fit either. When you see below, your natural instinct is “I need to type something”.
However, Nokia and Zing want users to use the app before using this page. You have to actually click on “Tai ung dung” to see your first clear reference to the application:
On this page, we finally have a link to the application, but the user doesn’t quite know what’s so great about this app other than there might be prizes if he uses it. I would like to think there is at least some benefit to using the app other than winning prizes.
When you look at the other two menu links, a user will get even more confused. “Gui Feedback” means to send feedback, but when you go to that page, you can only read feedback. “Ovi Store” takes you out of the site completely, and when you do that, you’re basically telling the user to go away and get lost when you want the user to focus on downloading the app and writing the review instead.
My suggestion here is to create a promotion page that summarizes both the quality of the app and explains what someone should do to qualify for the contest. This page will be the landing page the user sees when he clicks on the banner. Here’s my mockup:
Here are the changes applied:
- We promote the mobile application, so that you’re not just installing the application to win prizes, you also know that it’s a great app for listening to music. You should want to use it even if there isn’t a prize attached to it!
- Explain very simply what the promotion is and how to join, step by step. The user doesn’t have to go to any other pages to get started, all the information and links he needs are right on the page.
ZING MP3 for Mobile: Music on the Go
Music lovers, you can now listen to all your favorite music on your mobile phone, free, with the new Zing MP3 application!
To celebrate, we’re going to give away Nokia X3-02 Touch and Type phones every two weeks to our fans. Here’s how to join this contest in 3 easy steps:
Click on the “download” button to the right to go to the Ovi Store and download Zing MP3 (Note: You may need to register for a free Ovi Store account)
Listen to music on your mobile – at home, work, everywhere!
Let your friends know how much you enjoy Zing MP3 by writing a review.
In the original design, the design emphasizes other user reviews / testimonials. In this mockup, I have elected not to include those in order to keep focus on the user doing Steps 1-3. A natural way to reference those reviews is in Step 3. You can change the text to:
Let your friends know how much you enjoy Zing MP3 by writing a review (You can read what other users think of Zing MP3 by clicking here)
As I mentioned earlier, we want to funnel users to do specific actions. Show them reviews if they need to see them in order to agree to download the app, but you do not want to distract them unnecessarily.
Old User Flow: Banner -> Rules -> Main Page -> App Page
New User Flow: Banner -> Promotion Page.
Step 3: Write a review about their app experience (Real Consumer Product Testimonials)
Previously, we simplified the user flow to maximize conversion for both downloading the app and making it simple to write reviews afterwards.
Let’s now examine the way reviews are presented on the current site and maximize their persuasiveness.
If someone is looking at a review, a couple of questions will enter his mind:
- What is the person saying about the product? (is it good or bad)
- Can I trust this person? (is he real)
When you look at the screenshot below, imagine this is the first feedback you have seen of the application.
This is a review from “netgalaxy006”. Instead of seeing his face, we see an envelope next to him. No real name. Who is this guy? How do we know we can trust his opinion? Since Zing does have user profiles with avatars and user information, they missed out on creating that trust. Below is something that Zing could have done:
Which one looks more trustworthy, the one on the left (Zing) or the one on the right (my mockup)? In the mockup idea, users would click on Thanh Phuong’s avatar to visit her profile on Zing to learn more about her and verify she is a real person.
When showing user reviews, Nokia should feature (choose) the best positive, well written reviews from real people. Those types of reviews will maximize the persuasiveness of the campaign. Otherwise, users may doubt the truthfulness in the reviews, and by extension, the quality of the Zing MP3 App.
Step 4: Promote Awareness of that Review (Enabling Social Media / Viral Sharing)
This campaign tries to maximize the reach of the reviews (the number of people who see and are influenced by them) by encouraging users to generate “likes” on their feedback. The idea is that if a lot of people see your review and like it, this increases exposure to the product. Good idea.
When you write a review on the site, however, you cannot share a link to that review with your friends – no link exists. You won’t get a reminder over sms or email to confirm you have entered the contest nor a reminder to ask friends to check out your review. If you want your friends to help you, you will have to go tell them to look by hand.
With over 15,000 total reviews, though, this could be a bit tough.
While writing this blog, I went through the most recent 325 reviews spanning 13 hours and did not find a single review that had been given a thumbs-up “like”. What I did see were a few users like NetGalaxy006 who had written well over 100 consecutive reviews.
Users have no reason to read and vote for the best reviews because there is no motivation (benefit) to do so. Users who may be motivated by friendship cannot do so because it is very difficult. Thus, there has been limited voter participation in the site, and little user promotion of the campaign.
After finishing this blog post, I later found that you can search reviews by someone’s username. Based on the voting results I have observed and as there is nothing on the website telling users to tell their friends to find them this way, I do not think many users are aware of the search function.
Zing again loses an opportunity on this campaign, this time to maximize reach. When a user participates, ZingMe should post news of this action on his wall so that all his friends would automatically know he wrote a review, could read and vote for it, and participate (download the app) in the activity themselves.
After originally finishing this review, a friend told me that Zing does have this mechanism (I did not see it when I participated). I went back and wrote 10 more test reviews through multiple accounts. The wall posting option prompt appeared only twice while submitting those 10 reviews, and I never saw either of those appear in my wall. Thus, I cannot confirm if this mechanism really works.
For easy reference, a good example of working viral mechanism is on Yamaha’s Cute Vietnam Project campaign (www.cuxi.com.vn), a promotion for the CUXI Motorbike.
Yamaha is currently encouraging users to vote for their favorite CUXI girl, one of 100 girls in Vietnam previously selected to represent the CUXI brand. Each girl competes against each other by uploading great content (blogs, photos) to attract visitors and asking her friend network to support her.
Users vote because they can qualify to win weekly prizes. When users participate in the activity, a status update is automatically shared with their friends to let them know more about the activity. Friends can then click and participate in the activity directly (which in turn, creates additional status updates advertising the activity and the CUXI brand). Here’s a screenshot of what it looks like in a friend’s activity feed:
Since the discussion of Step 4 was a bit long, I’ll summarize the optimizations for quick reference:
- Give users a unique link of their reviews to share with friends
- Automatically post the activity participation in the user’s Zing Me activity feed - better yet, allow that person to also post that news on other social sites such as Facebook, Cyworld, etc. (Maximize each user’s influence on his friend network)
- Give friends a reason why they should vote (maybe you can only vote once, and if the review they vote for wins, both the reviewer and his supporters win a small prize)
Thanks for reading. I would love to hear your thoughts on how you would improve this Nokia / Zing campaign, please write a comment!