Month: July 2012

Google Analytics…Out With the Old, In With the New!


We knew it was coming. Back in late 2011, Google Analytics launched a new interface with the ability to toggle back and forth between the old and new interface. Slowly we were encouraged to get used to the new version, learn where your reports lived, take advantage of the new features, etc. Well the day has finally come where Google Analytics can only be accessed with the new interface. But with this new Analytics comes some great features that we all can (and should) get used to.


Social Reporting capabilities found new meaning in Google Analytics. Although we highly encourage the use of unique UTM codes for any and all social activity, Social Reporting can now be found under traffic sources and offers additional key metrics. In particular, assisted social conversion and last interaction social conversions provide you with the data to determine how much social really is affecting your overall site usage and goal completion.


We consistently see Remarketing campaigns as top conversion drivers for PPC campaigns. (both in ecommerce and lead-gen) Unfortunately for the over-worked web developer, implementing remarketing requires additional code on each page of the site. Often times sections of the site are assigned different remarketing codes thus making the implementation process confusing for all parties involved. Lucky for us (and the aforementioned over-worked developer) Google Analytics announced the rollout of Remarketing with Google Analytics beta. By setting up Remarketing through Google Analytics, you have the ability to remarket not just by predefined lists, but by familiar Google Analytics metrics like time on site, pages viewed, goal completions, etc. and automatically send those Remarketing Lists to the linked Google Adwords account. It also doesn’t require additional code to the site since it runs off the preexisting Analytics code. Right now, this new Remarketing feature is just in beta and will be rolled out to every Analytics account with at least one Adwords account linked to it. Be sure to look for it under the Admin tab as you’re logged in as an account administrator.

The above mentioned changes to Google Analytics are designed to not only improve user engagement, but also provide you with more insight as to how people get to your site and what they are doing when they get there. Start getting familiar with the Social Reporting capabilities within Analytics now and be on the lookout for your account’s Remarketing Beta rollout.


Best of Online Marketing: Week of July 27, 2012


iPad BeachHappy Friday, marketers. With the lazy days of summer in full swing, there's no better time to stay on top of the latest and greatest best practices in online marketing. So pull out your iPad and kick back with my favorite online marketing posts of the week. Enjoy.

5 Tips for Growing Your Social Media Following with Email

Fuel your social media following with these 5 tips from Sundeep Kapur on ClickZ. He shares how to reward via exclusivity, send a social media email, make your efforts mobile friendly, and more.

The Ultimate Guide to Improving Email Marketing

Despite all the attention social media gets, email is still one of the most effective ways to reach your target audience. In this comprehensive post, KISSmetrics shares rich examples and useful advice for rethinking—and improving—your email marketing.

5 Ways to Integrate Social Media and Enterprise SEO

Social media continues to have a dramatic impact on your SEO results, but implementing an integrated search and social media strategy at the enterprise level presents unique challenges. On Search Engine Land, Adam Sherk reveals 5 key ways enterprise marketers can harness social media to achieve better rankings and higher ROI.

Your Guide to Higher Conversions [Infographic]

Keep your online marketing performance on course with ion interactive's nifty infographic for conversion success. From user experience, to landing page testing, to quality scores, and more, ensure you're following each key step, and you'll increase your conversion rates in no time.

4 Ways to Increase Engagement on Google+

Are your Google+ updates followed by crickets? Are you having trouble engaging with customers, and getting them to follow your company? Over on Social Media Examiner, Mike Stenger reveals 4 key tactics for driving interaction and engagement on the social network.


Social Media Strategies for B2B Marketers


B2B companies face unique challenges when utilizing social media to engage with their customers. One of the biggest challenges is simply figuring out where to dedicate their limited time when there are so many different networks and opportunities. So where should B2B marketers begin? Decide your 1) strategy 2) goals, and 3) tactics.

1. Strategy: Define your audience, where they are in the social sphere, and then engage.

  • The most effective social strategies engage their audience where they are active and receptive to learning more about your company so define your audience do a little research to see what social sites they are on.
  • With so many social media sites, allocate time based on where you think you will get the best ROI. Many B2B companies spend more time on LinkedIn and Twitter than Facebook and Pinterest because they have received more engagement from their target audience on these platforms. Every industry will be different, but by identifying your target audience you can determine where they are spending more of their time and focus efforts there.
  • Don’t be afraid to mix up your social strategy. If you thought Facebook would be a big draw, but come to find Twitter is creating more buzz, then re-allocate time to meet your audience’s needs.
  • Create engaging content which can be used on various social platforms. By doing this your target audience will see you as the industry leader and feel more comfortable engaging with you both online and offline. One of the best ways to begin creating content is to write a blog on your site which you can pull content from, promote on your social sites, and drive traffic back to your company’s website.

2. Goals: Determine the goals for your social media strategy.

  • Lead generation
  • Increased brand awareness
  • Be seen as a thought leader in your company’s field
  • Engage in meaningful conversations with current and prospective customers
  • Use social as a stepping stone to move the conversation to deeper engagements like an email or phone call
  • Develop a more personal relationship with current customers

3. Tactics: Determine which tactics will help accomplish your goals.

  • Provide ongoing content on your social media pages to engage users and build brand trust.  If you’re not sure what to post, ask your fans through Q&As what their biggest problems are and then provide responses.
  • Listen and respond to what your audience is saying about your company. There are many tools (both free and paid) that can help you do this. One of my favorites is HootSuite which allows you to have one login to see both Facebook and Twitter, all comments, and the ability to respond in one place.
  • Listen to what your target audience is saying their problems are and help them with possible solutions without being too “salesy.” LinkedIn forums and groups are a great place for companies to start because you can easily find groups talking about a problem that relates to your solution.
  • Before dipping into social paid search make sure you have a firm grasp on providing content and engaging current fans before paying for new ones.

[wp_bannerize group="B2B Lead Gen Facebook"]


The Marriage of Social Media & Email


One of the more recent and consistent questions I seem to get from clients is “how do I increase awareness of my email program?” followed almost instantly by “how do I get more social followers?”. So many marketers still see email and social media each set in their own silo. By doing this, they could be missing out on some pretty solid opportunities to increase both programs with very little effort.

My response back to my clients is a short and quick statement. “Use both of them together and see what happens”. See, email may touch one set of your customers in various stages of the customer lifecycle and social media can incorporate a whole different set of customers. Combine the effort for both methods and you have the potential to increase overall awareness and engagement on all levels.

From an email standpoint, integrating social into your current program can extend the reach of your emails and message as well as provide an opportunity for list growth. If you integrate social outlets into your email program, you also give your current email list more options for engaging with you. This is a good thing.

Now the million dollar question is how do you get started? My answer is usually this, start simple. It’s not a complicated process, but you have to make it simple for you and your customer or you won’t get anywhere.

Included in just about any up-to-date email platform is the option to incorporate social media icons and links within your emails. Just do it and don’t question why. It’s easy and it takes no time at all to create. Email is also a great way to ask your subscribers to “like” you on Facebook without being intrusive. Build a one-time “like us” campaign, but know that you will need to provide a reason for them to do so.

Another one of the more simple items you can create is an email opt-in form app on your Facebook page. As part of the app, keep it simple. Don’t require more than 4 fields for someone to fill out. Show an example of what they’ll receive. Include a preference center if you have more than one type of email campaign and let your customer decide when and what they receive. There’s also no harm in asking your Twitter followers. Tell them about your emails, what they can get, or simply post a link to an archived newsletter a few days after it’s been sent.

Simplicity and information are the key factors here. Take that first step and see what happens. I’d be surprised if you wound up disappointed.

Looking for more advice on creating a kick ass email and social media program? Check out OMI’s Online Digital Marketing Strategy Summit September 17-28.


SoLoMo – What is It?


SoLoMo - Social Local MobileWe’ve been hearing SoLoMo for a while now so I wanted to take some time to clarify. It means Social.Local.Mobile. We all know optimizing social media, mobile, and local listings; such as Google Places are three key areas we as marketers have focused on in the last 2-3 years. If your company has not started addressing these by now you’ve missed the boat and need to catch up quick. There’s good news though. Thanks to the rise of smartphones these three growing marketing tactics (social, mobile and local) are converging into one integrated strategy with the goal of improving the online and offline experience that customers have with a brand or store.

Even with the growth of SoLoMo over the last couple of years many marketers still struggle with how to utilize these tactics for their business and industry. Originally, this movement really gained momentum with deal sites like Groupon or Living Social to provide great deals to drive in store traffic. The SoLoMo marketing trend has evolved beyond just brick & mortar stores and coupons to now providing a mobile online experience that bridges the gap between the old PC experience and the new mobile trend.

What do I need to know?

  • The era of the PC as we know it is over –you don’t have to be tethered to your desk with a cord to go online
  • There are no more “Crackberry” addicts - people are addicted to their smart phones and tablets to connect online with social platforms like Foursquare and Facebook not just to get emails
  • Social media is now consumed not only on a PC via a browser, but by smartphone applications and mobile web interfaces
  • Physical locations are not dead – although the marketing may be online, physical stores can still utilize these social and local mediums to drive more traffic to an actual location or to enhance the customer experience within the store

    A great example of utilizing mobile to enhance a customer experience occurred when I was recently in my local running store. It was a nice spring day and they were swamped. It’s a rather small store with only one register so there was a long line to check out. But, they recently set up their iPad to accept credit cards. All I had to do was just pick out the shoe, swipe card, and run out the door. How great is that?

What do I need to do?

  • Recognize how your customers are consuming your content and create content that can be consumed on various electronic platforms
  • Use SoLoMo tactics to enhance a customers interaction with your brand whether the interaction is all online or a hybrid of both online and offline
  • There are so many possibilities with social, mobile and local that what works for one company may not be right for another
  • I hate to use a cliché but think outside the box to find the right way to engage your customer base


Best of Online Marketing: Week of July 20, 2012


Marissa MayerNeed a quick break from the Marissa-Mayer-joins-Yahoo news? (I do, but still incredibly excited to see what she does at Yahoo!) If so, catch up with my 5 favorite online marketing posts of this week, and learn how to improve SEO, write better calls-to-action, create a network of guest bloggers, and more.

The Easiest Way to Improve SEO

What is the easiest tactic you can use to improve your organic rankings? According to this MarketingSherpa post by Daniel Burnstein, it's writing unique meta titles and descriptions.

14 Examples of Effective Calls-to-Action

Your calls-to-action can make or break your conversion rate. HubSpot compiled 14 examples of effective call-to-action copy—just the inspiration you need to drive more visitors to take action.

How to Create a Network of Guest Bloggers

Cultivating guest blog posts is an effective way to grow your blog and drive traffic. Heather Baker shares 10 ways to create a network of guest contributors. Start by creating a quality blog, optimizing it for the engines, creating a contributors page, and more.

6 Tips to Drive Engagement on Pinterest

Pinterest is all the rage. But how can you use it to drive engagement with your audience? Get more out of your Pinterest efforts with Mitt Ray's 6 tips for driving engagement. He shares advice on running competitions, adding board contributors, testing offers, and more.

How to Manage Social Media Marketing (Book Review)

Need a guide to managing social media campaigns? On Chief Marketing Technologist, Scott Brinker reviews the new book, "Social Marketology" by Ric Dragon. If you or you team manages social media campaigns, you need to read this review (and the book, too).


Best of Online Marketing: Week of July 13, 2012


MagnetHappy Friday, online marketers! This week, drive more blog traffic, take advantage of slide decks for SEO, optimize your B2B email marketing, and more.

How to Attract 1,000 Daily Blog Visitors

Blogging is one of the most effective ways to drive website traffic and grow your audience. On MarketingProfs, discover 6 ways to attract 1,000 daily blog visitors (or more!). Learn why blogging isn't dead, how to spread the word about your blog, the importance of networking, and more.

4 Tips for Optimizing B2B Email Marketing

While social media and content marketing get all the attention, email marketing is still one of the most effective ways to reach and nurture a B2B audience. Over on ClickZ, Simms Jenkins reveals 4 ways B2B marketers can optimize their email results.

How to Use Slide Decks for SEO, Social Media & Content Marketing

Promoting slide decks is an easy way to power up your online marketing. In this SEOMoz whiteboard Friday post, Rand Fishkin provides in-depth insight on how marketers can take advantage of the slide decks they already have to drive traffic and shares.

How WBC Boosted E-commerce Conversions by 12%

Need a quick shot of conversion inspiration? Discover how UK retailer WBC used Advanced Segments in Google Analytics to boost conversions by more than 12%. Learn how they used micro-conversions to identify their most valuable segments, and see a before and after shot of their home page.

6 Deadly Don'ts of Google AdWords

Are you guilty of committing one of the deadly don'ts of Google AdWords campaigns? These are the common AdWords mistakes marketers make that will cost you clicks—and revenue.


Best of Social Media: Week of July 11, 2012


Twitter TipsWelcome back to our weekly roundup of the best social media posts of the past 7 days. This week, improve your Facebook cover image, amp up your Twitter efforts, get on Google+, and more.

16 Ways to Revitalize Your Twitter Efforts

Want to inject some creativity into Twitter? Charlene Kingston shares 16 ways to improve your Twitter efforts. Learn what you should change in your profile, how to create a Twitter landing page, how to promote your account, and more.

SEO & Social Media Go Together Like Peanut Butter & Jelly

SEO and social media are the perfect match—like peanut butter and jelly. Right here on the OMI blog, Nessa Felleson shares why marketers must now integrate their social media and SEO efforts, and how to get started.

Are You Missing the Point of Social Media?

Engagement, likes, and comments are nice. But is your social media marketing driving real, meaningful revenue? Krista Neher explains why effective social isn't about the the number of Facebook Fans you have, but about getting people to buy your product.

How to Improve Your Facebook Cover Image

Does your Facebook cover image include everything but the kitchen sink? You're not alone. Head over to MarketingSherpa, and discover why simplifying your Facebook cover image can better engage your audience and represent your brand.

Guy Kawasaki on Google+

Still not on Google+? Over on MarketingProfs, Guy Kawasaki makes the case for why you need to start using it. Now. Learn which features are worth testing, and why it's better than Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.


SEO & Social Media Go Together Like Peanut Butter and Jelly


Search engine optimization (SEO) and social media often have been at odds with each other with SEO belonging to marketing department and social media belonging to PR department. With Google’s recent acknowledgement that social indicators are now part of the algorithm that determines where a website ranks in the SERPs, more and more companies are working to bring these two programs together. Simply put, when they work together the results are much better for both teams. Take a piece of toast for example, it’s good with peanut butter (SEO) and it’s good with jelly (PR) but it’s so much better when you have both together (PB&J).

How can social help SEO?

  1. By increasing the quantity and quality of links to your website
  2. Helping drive up brand mentions on the front page of SERPs
  3. Create a “wall paper” effect allowing a company to dominate the organic section of search results for branded search queries
  4. Better reputation management
  5. As a new source of searches and organic traffic
  6. A treasure trove for keyword research

How can SEO help Social?

  1. SEO is all about optimizing content whether it’s on your Website or on a social media platform
  2. By integrating SEO into your social campaigns your content can be indexed and found by search engines – keep in mind YouTube, which is generally considered a social platform, is the second largest search engine behind Google
  3. Better target the right content to the right person with the right keywords and terminology


Best of Online Marketing: Week of July 6, 2012


FlowchartHope you're enjoying this 4th of July week. While you sit by the pool and read this post on your iPad (that's what you are doing, right?), take a spin through my favorite posts of the week. Learn how to create a content process, measure SEO, fail fast at paid search, and more

How to Develop a Social Media & Content Process

To succeed in content marketing, you need a defined process. In this post on SEOMoz, Mackenzie Fogelson reveals the 8 key steps for integrated social media and content marketing success, with the help of a handy infographic. Learn how to develop a strategy and calendar, promote your content, measure your results, and more.

5 Ways to Measure SEO with Google Analytics

As SEO evolves, measuring your efforts poses new challenges. Discover 5 key ways to measure your SEO. Learn why position reports don't matter, how to segment your visitors, how to integrate Google Analytics with Webmaster Tools, and more.

Why You Should Fail Fast at Paid Search

The best way to improve your search results is to continuously test and improve your campaigns, or, in other words, fail fast. Dave Roth shares 5 sure-fire ways to fail quickly—and improve your return on paid search spend. Learn how to setup a testing budget, build a testing calendar, and more.

5 Ways Businesses Can Use Google+ Hangouts

Need to inject some creativity into your social media campaigns? Try a Google+ hangout. On Social Media Examiner, discover 5 creative ways businesses are harnessing Google+ hangouts to engage their audience, and how you can, too.

 Tips for Choosing an Online Video Platform

Video is a great way to engage your audience. But what is the best way to host and manage your videos? Over on ClickZ, Mike Dodge shares common challenges and advice for selecting an online video platform.