Tuesday, July 30, 2013

This week's Wednesday Webinar with @PortentInt: Weird, Useful, Significant: Internet marketing in 2013

Due to technical difficulties, Ian Lurie's presentation from June had to be rescheduled. Get
ready, because we're going to explore all the ways Internet marketing has changed in the year 2013! 

We've all turned internet marketing into a monster truck show, chasing rankings until our tongues drag on the ground. Now, learn how marketing really works, and how you can apply it to refresh your campaigns, boost revenue and strengthen your brand.

Click here to register for FREE (6-12-13 at 12:30pm EST)
http://bit.ly/153mmW6

About Ian Lurie:

Ian Lurie is CEO at Portent, a digital agency he started in 1995. His firm provides search engine optimization (SEO), pay per click (PPC), social media and general strategic services to a wide range of small, medium and large businesses.
Ian believes strongly that great marketing, online and off, relies on clarity and helps customers make good decisions about products, services and people. Several years ago he wrote the book Conversation Marketing to be a common-sense guide to internet marketing. He's also co-author of the Web Marketing All-in-One Desk Reference for Dummies. 


You can follow Ian on Twitter at @portentint, or find him on the Portent blog, at www.portent.com/blog.
Click here to register for FREE (6-12-13 at 12:30pm EST)
http://bit.ly/153mmW6

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Business Owners; What Are You Waiting for?

Remember how you felt when you didn’t have the courage to ask out that cute guy/girl you had such a crush on back in school? Remember how you felt when that  couple outbid you and your spouse on your dream house by just a few bucks? Don’t let that feeling creep back into your life in the corner office.
According to the University of Michigan consumer confidence survey released Friday, Americans are more confident about the economy than at any time since July 2007. UM’s index of consumer sentiment rang in at 85.1 in July—that’s up nearly 13 points from this time a year ago. Researchers said rising home prices and consistent job gains are boosting feelings of household wealth and income. While the beige book statistics coming out of Washington are consistently underwhelming, we’re putting more stock in the psychology of the U.S. consumer and business owner than what the economists’ numbers indicate.
According to the UM data, the proportion of Americans who expect their incomes to rise in the coming year is greater than at any time since late 2007. And the percentage of Americans who say they believe their home values have risen is also at a six-year high.
Conclusion

If your firm or business is still in “hunker down” mode—afraid to hire the help you need and too insecure to upgrade your systems and infrastructure—then that whooshing sound you hear may be your competitors (and top talent), blowing right by you. Borrowing costs (for you and your customers) will not get any lower. The financial markets, while at record highs, are still historically cheap. If you’re serious about taking your firm or business to the next level, then the time’s never going to be better than RIGHT NOW. Be a bold leader, not a disconsolate shoulda-woulda-coulda. Make your move today and go all in. You’ll be glad you did. 

More tips can be found on the FREE Resources page of our website.

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Tags: Consumer confidence, University of Michigan survey 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Tomorrow's webinar with @MWooddy - Instagram Video and Why You Need It!

Instagram is not going anywhere. In an age where social platforms leave our thoughts more quickly than they first appeared, Instagram has gained quite a reputable following over the last three years. Now with more than 130 million users and 40 million photos a day, brands are really starting to recognize the Instagram app for what its worth -- which is apparently much more than 1,000 words. Facebook took quite a notice, as well, as the startup app is now owned and (more or less) operated by the social media giant. The latest update to Instagram includes a new video feature, allowing users to turn their pictures into animated stories. With Twitter's Vine service as a direct competitor, how does this measure up to your brand's social strategies? In this webinar, you'll learn the five reasons why you should be using IG Video in your marketing campaign. 

Click here to register for FREE (7-24-13 at 12:30pm EST)
http://bit.ly/162lLCE

About Matt Wooddy: 

For the last six years, Matt Wooddy has used his social wizardry to completely turn around the online presence of over 200 brands. Understanding that social media is more than just a place to promote your business, he uses personal interaction and entertaining messages to improve the branding and interest of any given company. His industry knowledge has ranged from tattoo magazines and motorsport news channels to skin care products and dental practices. Matt realizes that it's not so much the product that drives a good social campaign, but it's the ability to communicate with your fans and followers in a personal way that makes a difference. As a freelance photographer, visual artist and musician in his free time, Matt has developed these personal skills that connect humans with each other. Though not a marketing expert in the traditional sense, the advent of online marketing has made Matt Wooddy a proven veteran in his respective fields.
Click here to register for FREE (7-24-13 at 12:30pm EST)
http://bit.ly/162lLCE

Friday, July 19, 2013

What Successful People Never Do


It’s a Friday and we’re in Day Six of a near-triple-digit heat wave here in the Northeast. Obviously productivity is not at 100 percent across most of the working world (look how late our post is this week).
Half the people you count on are away for vacation or pretty much mailing it in before they leave. The other half are running around like chickens with their heads off, frantically checking things off a punch list that seems to gets longer (not shorter) the closer they get to their vacation departure date.

Some of our clients are blowing off our weekly “gut check” calls and that’s where the highest performing organizations separate themselves from the rest of the pack. Like great sports teams, elite military units and award winning symphonies, they find that extra gear that allows them to grind it out and focus when everyone else is mailing it in. The dividends for that kind of discipline will be huge after Labor Day.

Bernard Marr, a best-selling author and business performance expert sent us this great post the other day and it really gave us a lift around the office. “The is one thing all radically successful people have in common,” notes Marr, “Their ferocious drive and hunger for success makes them never give up.” Contrary to popular opinion, they’re not always successful at everything they do, but they have a unique ability to “pick themselves up, dust themselves off and carry on trying.”
To drive his point home, Marr deconstructs the failures of Henry Ford, Walt Disney, Oprah Winfrey, Richard Branson, Bill Gates and other luminaries before they hit it big. And what struck us the most was that some of their ideas that didn’t catch on actually sounded pretty good. It’s not just having a great idea, but having a great idea at just the right time, with the right team and resources behind you to execute it.

Conclusion
“The truly successful won't be beaten,” observes Marr. “They take responsibility for failure, learn from it and start all over from a stronger position.” Amen, Bernard.

Stay cool. Work hard. Play hard. And for goodness sakes, don’t ever take your foot off the accelerator. Life’s too short not to get the most out of each and every day.
More tips can be found on the FREE Resources page of our website.

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Tags: Bernard Marr, What successful people never do

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Google Remarketing Optimization Tips (Part 3)

In this final post covering Google Remarketing optimization tips, let’s quickly recap the best practices we previously reviewed.

Part 1 Tips:

• Ad testing
• Landing page testing
• Offer testing

Part 2 Tips:

• Frequency testing
• Segmentation testing

We’ll conclude this series with the following best practices and last thoughts. Remember, to find out what is most effective for your campaigns, you’ll want to test these tips and continue testing some more.

1. Site Exclusion Testing: Remarketing is different from display advertising in that the people seeing your ads have been to your site before. Regardless, certain sites and/or ad placements may outperform others. Evaluate site exclusion testing for underperforming sites that are eating up the budget by reducing the bid or excluding them if necessary. You may want to consider raising your bids for websites that perform better to gain impression share. Utilize this tactic sparingly since this is a Remarketing campaign – you can’t control what websites they visit.

2. Bid Testing: Monitor your bids for impression share in addition to ROI. Test different bid amounts to see where they are most effective. Since you are following visitors and not websites, you will need to bid appropriately and not to the point of annoyance. Your bidding strategy should also reflect your list segmentation. For instance, you may find it makes more sense to bid higher on lists that include recent visitors since they are more likely to convert.

Lastly, please don’t limit your Remarketing strategy. Although it is a great start to remarket to anyone who visits your website with a single offer – this is so limiting. You have the power to feature targeted offers based on varied and relevant sections of your website. Get creative with your Remarketing and laser target your offers to afford the most value to your visitors.

Like this post? Connect with Erika Barbosa on Google+.

Image credit: Omar Bárcena

Tomorrow's webinar with @ERontheWeb - Beyond Social Media Marketing: Improving Customer Service and Product Excellence

We are truly excited for tomorrow's webinar, because it dives into the very subject matter that often needs the most focus in the online marketing world: customer service. Since the advent of the Internet and the online brand presence, companies have scrambled to improve their customer service skills in order to better appeal to the consumer and improve product excellence. 

The location and method that a customer wants to communicate is becoming an extremely critical important piece of Social Media. From Facebook to Twitter, social networking IS transforming the world of customer service - enabling businesses to interact with customers like never before. We all need to get ready for the next phase in Customer (Social) Support!

The session will explore Social Media customer support strategies from top companies including Comcast, Zappos and Southwest Airlines, as well as AOL's very own strategy. Discussion will include what works and what doesn't work.

Click here to register for FREE (7-17-13 at 12:30pm EST)
https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/9086609634796060416

About Erin Robinson:

Erin Robinson is Senior Communications Manager at AOL, driving the newly formed customer support on sites such as Facebook, Twitter and various community forums for AOL. Previously as AOL’s Social Media Manager she developed social listening channels and response mechanisms as well as worked with other teams to create social customer care solutions for their products, programs and services. Erin is AOL champion and evangelist for social support and education for product teams to participate in the social setting. In addition to her roles with AOL, she is also the Social Media Chair for American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life and Cure by Design. She has created training and education on the power and need for social presence and support for these activities. 
Prior to that, she worked for USA WEEKEND Magazine (Gannett) as a Market Development Specialist. She has obtained certification in Advanced Social Medial Skills from the University of San Francisco; and is obtaining her PMP certification. If all of that does not spell out her commitment to social media; she has led social media panels and classes, and is developing a blog and training program on the importance of social media to and for customer care. Basically, she is a social media nerd and is happy to be here spreading her nerdiness to all of you. Don’t forget to follow her! @ERontheWeb

Click here to register for FREE (7-17-13 at 12:30pm EST)
https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/9086609634796060416

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Today's #webinar is a go! @MichaelPort presents Book Yourself Solid

This Wednesday, we're proud to present award-winning author and speaker Michael Port and his Book Yourself Solid campaign. Based on the book by the same name, Book Yourself Solid takes an in-depth look into marketing and obtaining clients the natural way. It really happens, and it could be you. In Book Yourself Solid, (Second Edition; Updated and Expanded) small business marketing expert Michael Port takes you by the hand and walks you down the path to:


- Discover and set your businessfoundation
- Build trust with your target audience
- Build credibility within yourmarketplace
- Within a few pages of this leadgeneration

Click here to register for FREE (7-10-13 at 12:30pm EST):
http://bit.ly/15rJ9sU

About Michael Port:


Called a “marketing guru” by theWall Street Journal, Michael Port, has lectured, trained, inspired,and provided coaching and consulting services to over 20,000 businessowners in the last two years alone. As a speaker, he has headlinedevents with leaders like Brian Tracy, Tony Robbins, Steadman Graham,Tim Sanders, and others. Michael is the author of the nationalbestselling Book Yourself Solid, The Fastest, Easiest and MostReliable System For Getting More Clients Than You Can Handle Even IfYou Hate Marketing And Selling and the soonto be released Beyond Booked Solid. He’s also a contributing authorto Success Secrets of the Online Marketing Superstars and GuerrillaMarketing for Job Hunters. Before starting his consulting &training company, Michael spent years honing his management skills byworking in senior management for some of the premiere health andfitness companies in the country including The Sports Club Company,and Clay, the most luxurious health club in New York, where he servedas the Senior Vice President of Operations. Oh, you should alsoknow…if you’re wondering why Michael looks kind of familiar…it’s because he was once a slightly famous actor starring in TV andfilm projects like Sex and the City, Third Watch, All My Children,Guiding Light, Central Park West, 100 Centre Street, The PelicanBrief, Down to Earth, Last Call, The Believer, and many more. He alsoprovided hundreds of television and radio commercials for companiessuch as AT&T, Pizza Hut, Braun Shavers, MTV, Home and GardenNetwork, Coors Beer and many more.

Click here to register for FREE (7-10-13 at 12:30pm EST):
http://bit.ly/15rJ9sU

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Google Remarketing Optimization Tips (Part 2)

As a continuation to Google Remarketing optimization tips (part 1), this week we will review two more best practices. Last week we discussed the importance of testing ads, landing pages and offers. This week we are covering frequency and segmentation testing.

1. Frequency Testing: It’s happened to all of us. As we visit different websites, the same ad continues to follow us. Not only could the excessiveness get annoying, but it could also have a negative effect on your brand’s image. I recommend testing different frequency caps to strike a balance between not being annoying but yet harnessing the power of interested visitors. Tread carefully with frequency cap testing. Continue to monitor your audience size in relation to impressions. To review frequency reporting within your AdWords campaign, go to the Dimensions Tab > View > Reach and Frequency > and select by Day, Week or Month.

2. Segmentation Testing: Speak to your audience based on where they are in the buying cycle. Utilize different custom combinations including the length of the cookie and layering interest or topic categories. Test this tactic to see what is most effective. Thinking about your audience, wouldn’t you speak to someone who visited your website in the last 7 days differently than a visitor from 90 days ago?


In my next post, I’ll cover tips such as bid testing and what you need to monitor as a best practice.

What optimization methods have you seen success with?

Like this post? Connect with Erika Barbosa on Google+.

Image credit: You As A Machine

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Can the Young and Old Co-Exist in the Workplace?

If you have summer interns or recent college graduates at your organization right now, chances are you’re pretty frustrated. If you’re a young person just starting out in your career, chances are you’re pretty frustrated as well. So who’s at fault when both sides just aren’t getting it?

According to a new report by The Chronicle of Higher Education and American Public Media’s Marketplace published in March found that about half of 704 employers who participated in the study said they had trouble finding recent college graduates qualified to fill positions at their company.

What really caught our attention was the lack of “specific technical skills” wasn’t the whole story. Turns out employers are even more distressed by job candidates’ lack of “written and oral communication skills, adaptability and managing multiple priorities, and making decisions and problem solving.” In other words THE ABILITY TO THINK!

Jaime S. Fall, a vice president at the HR Policy Association, who was interviewed in
Alina Tugend’s piecein last Friday’s New York Times about this report said young employees “are very good at finding information, but not as good at putting that information into context.” In other words, “They’re really good at technology, but not at how to take those skills and resolve specific business problems.”

Amen.

Mara Swan, executive vice president of global strategy and talent at Manpower Group, told Tugend that young workers have problems with collaboration, interpersonal skills, the ability to deal with ambiguity, flexibility and professionalism.

On the flip side, young workers think there older co-workers and superiors are technology dinosaurs, slow to adapt and resentful that they’re not willing to pay their dues like they did.

Conclusion

There’s truth to both sides of the argument. What our highest performing clients are doing are finding ways to bridge both the generation gap and technology gap by allowing their employees to make contributions on the terms they prefer via the communication tools they prefer. Regardless of where you are in your career or your hiring process, you need to understand what  makes your non-peers tick and help them get the most out of their talents.

Have a great 4th.  HB

More tips can be found on the FREE Resources page of our website.


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Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Tomorrow's webinar with @JayBerkowitz: Creating Your Home Base: A Website Anyone Can Manage

In the modern digital era, websites are becoming more and more necessary in order to carry out daily business. Whether you're an established medical professional or own a plumbing service, websites are more imperative to your brand than ever before. But you don't have to be a marketing and website building expert in order to create one. This week's webinar features Ten Golden Rules founder and CEO Jay Berkowitz as he explores the possibilities of easily creating your own website. 

- How to set up and manage your own personal brand website
- How to set up a WordPress blog as your website
- Famous blogs and what we can learn from them
- Web Hosting made easy
- How to update your website and create blog posts with links and images
- What to write about

Click here to register for FREE (7-3-13 at 12:30pm EST)
http://bit.ly/19h0qYS

About Jay Berkowitz:

Jay Berkowitz is an author, an educator, an International keynote speaker and an award-winning thought leader. A senior online marketing professional with over twenty years of marketing experience, Mr. Berkowitz has managed marketing departments for Fortune 500 brands: Coca-Cola, Sprint and McDonald's Restaurants, and he has developed online and offline strategies for AT&T and leading health and fitness website eDiets.com.


Mr. Berkowitz is the author of The Ten Golden Rules of Online Marketing Workbook, the Founder and CEO of www.TenGoldenRules.com, a strategic online marketing consulting business based in Boca Raton, Florida. He is the host of the Ten Golden Rules of Internet Marketing Podcast, an Adjunct Professor with the University of San Francisco Internet Marketing Course and he has been profiled in the Wall Street Journal, The Business Journals and he was interviewed on FOX Business TV.

Click here to register for FREE (7-3-13 at 12:30pm EST)
http://bit.ly/19h0qYS

Monday, July 1, 2013

Google Remarketing Optimization Tips (Part 1)

So you’re excited that you’ve launched your Google Remarketing campaign and it’s generating conversions out of the gate, but now what? How do you go about optimizing the campaign to maximize results? Remarketing is not a “set it and forget it” type of campaign. Similar to Search campaigns, you’ll want to continue to optimize and test.

Looking for some tips to get started? Here are three best practices in no particular order; they are all equally important.

1. Ad Testing: You need to approach Google Remarketing ad testing with a slightly different mindset than traditional display advertising. Remember, these visitors are presumably more familiar with your brand as they’ve had some sort of interaction. Speak to your audience with this understanding. Test different messaging to try to win them back. Utilize all banner ad sizes in addition to text ads. When crafting your messaging, think about what pages the audience has already viewed. What can you say to them that will entice them enough to give you a second chance?

2. Landing Page Testing: Similar to Search campaigns, the experience from the ad to the landing page should function in a complementary fashion. If the messaging is disjointed, you’ll lose the visitor again. For instance, if your ad promises 10% off, be sure that messaging carries through front and center on the landing page. Experiment with landing your audience on different relevant pages to understand what messaging resonates best.

3. Offer Testing: Remember that you need to speak to this audience differently, so you’ll want to test a variety of offers. The generic type of offer will probably not appeal to these folks. Approach Remarketing offers with the mindset of “upping the ante”. What do you need to offer this audience to lead them further down the funnel?

Have you noticed the common theme in these tips? Test, test and then test some more. These tips will get you heading in the right direction, but there are many other tips to cover. In my upcoming posts, we’ll review additional optimization best practices so you’ll want to stay tuned.

What questions do you have about optimizing Remarketing campaigns?

Like this post? Connect with Erika Barbosa on Google+.

Image credit: Horia Varlan