Caitlin Burgess

Working Together in Perfect Harmony: Digital Advertising + Content Marketing

Caitlin Burgess on Jan 17th, 2017     Content Marketing, Digital Marketing, Search Marketing

Content marketing has emerged as an incredibly effective way to arm consumers with the information they seek and need, increase brand awareness, enhance engagement, and ultimately inspire action and conversions. As TopRank Marketing CEO Lee Odden likes to say:

“Content isn’t King. It’s the Kingdom.”

But the kingdom is crowded. According to Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and MarketingProf’s 2016 benchmark reports, 88% of B2B marketers and 76% of B2C marketers say they use content marketing.

With so many marketers in the content marketing game—many of them creating and publishing new content daily—competition is stiff. In addition, evolving algorithms for social media news feeds and search engine results make it even more difficult to get the right eyeballs on your content.

Ashley Zeckman

5 Email Marketing Platforms for the Modern Marketer

Ashley Zeckman on Jan 16th, 2017     Email Marketing

Email marketing has stood the test of time. The first email marketing campaign was sent in the 1970’s and the early 1990’s saw the first mobile email experience. No matter how many new tactics come on the market, email is still a strong force.

In fact, recent research has found that email marketing is 40% more effective at acquiring new customers than Facebook and Twitter. While most brands have not abandon email marketing completely, it’s taken a backseat to flashier advancements in digital marketing.

Email is probably the greatest owned media channel for brands. @joepulizzi Click To Tweet

But the numbers don’t lie, email marketing can still be an incredibly successful digital marketing tactic, if executed correctly. Part of developing a successful email marketing strategy means having the right tools in your arsenal. This post covers 10 different email marketing tools (in no particular order) that can help you take your email marketing from good to great.

Tiffani Allen

Online Marketing News: Search Ranking Factors, 2017 Digital Trends & New Mid-Roll Ads

Tiffani Allen on Jan 13th, 2017     Online Marketing, Online Marketing News

The Most Important Google Search Rank Factors [Infographic]
Search rankings are a key consideration for many aspects of a digital marketing strategy — and the ever-changing nature of search algorithms doesn’t necessarily make it easy to determine where the most impact can be made. This infographic spells out the top 20 most important Google search rank factors. MarketingProfs

Edelman Digital’s 2017 Trends Report
Edelman released their annual digital trends report and things are looking good for virtual and augmented reality, as well as programmatic digital ad spend. What else will be trending this year? The 50 page report has all the details. Edelman

Ashley Zeckman

Cracking the Code: 3 Steps to Building Influence with Content Marketing

Ashley Zeckman on Jan 12th, 2017     Content Marketing, Online Marketing

Stories like Indiana Jones, The Goonies and Sherlock Holmes have all taught us a very important (and sometimes frustrating) life lesson: If you want to find the artifact/treasure/bad guy, you have to crack the code!

Even with all of the information available to us as marketers today, there is still so much mystery surrounding the “perfect” combination for content marketing success. Additionally, thousands of variables and quickly evolving customer habits add complexity to content planning and execution.

But I’ll let you in on a little secret. I can help you crack the code to building influence with content marketing! How? There are three essential steps to building influence with content and this post contains a “map” of each element. While the exact code might be slightly different from one company to the next, these steps can help you identify the key elements you need to deploy a successful and impactful content program.

Joshua Nite

Small Business Owners: Use These Tips to Increase Website Traffic from Social Media

Joshua Nite on Jan 11th, 2017     Facebook, LinkedIn, Small Business, Social Media

For the past decade, many small business marketers have taken an “If you build it, they will come” approach to Facebook. They share engaging content, encourage conversation, and optimize their Facebook page to meet their goals. Unfortunately, too often the expected outcome doesn’t quite match the reality:

Facebook has an average of 1.71 billion active users a month—that’s an audience worth addressing. Yet business owners struggle to convert Facebook users into organic traffic to their websites.

Business app discovery platform GetApp recently surveyed 500 owners of small and medium-sized businesses. Less than 30% of respondents reported that Facebook was moderately to extremely effective at driving organic traffic to their sites. By contrast, 20.1% rated it slightly effective, and over 25% said it was not effective at all.

Caitlin Burgess

Is Your Content Marketing Designed for the New Customer Journey?

Caitlin Burgess on Jan 10th, 2017     B2B Marketing, B2C Marketing, Content Marketing

Thanks to the rise of the internet, the explosion of social media and the development of mobile technologies to feed these two innovations, the customer buying journey has become much more self-directed. According to a Forrester, 74% of business buyers say they conduct more than half of their research online before making an offline purchase.

As a result, content marketing has emerged as an incredibly effective way to arm consumers with the information they seek and need, increase brand awareness, enhance engagement, and ultimately inspire action and conversions.

But content marketing isn’t about creating and sharing as much content as possible. It’s about creating quality content that allows you to be the best answer, whenever and wherever your audience is searching. And understanding today’s customer journey will be paramount to your content marketing success. Below is a great illustration from Forrester on the many intricacies that journey can entail. As you can see, it’s not an easy, neat sales funnel these days.

Caitlin Burgess

20 Talented Brand Marketers to Follow on LinkedIn

Caitlin Burgess on Jan 9th, 2017     B2B Marketing, B2C Marketing, LinkedIn

Marketers are always looking for new ways to inform, engage and inspire action from our target audiences, often looking to both established and well-known brands for motivation and creativity.

Thankfully, behind many of our favorite brands there are bright and talented marketing experts whom we can learn from and be inspired by.

With that said, below are some gifted brand marketers you should be checking out, connecting with or following on LinkedIn.

1. Jason Miller

Group Manager of Global Content and Social Media Marketing, LinkedIn

As the leader of global content and social media marketing for LinkedIn Marketing Solutions, Jason Miller is dedicated to helping marketers understand how to take advantage of digital advertising and content marketing opportunities on the professional social network.

Tiffani Allen

Online Marketing News: Content for Millennials & Boomers, Top Data Trends & PPC for Research

Tiffani Allen on Jan 6th, 2017     Online Marketing, Online Marketing News

Infographic: How Millennials and Baby Boomers Consume User-Generated Content
Content and recommendations from other consumers are generally considered more trustworthy than content coming from a brand. This infographic lends more credibility to that idea. Although Boomers and Millennials consume content differently, they have one key preference in common: 76% of consumers believe that content shared by average people is more honest than advertising from brands. AdWeek

The Top Three Data Trends of 2016
Ad Age discusses the top three data trends of 2016: The customer ID movement, growth in data sharing and the location data tracking boom. What’s the common thread? Collecting more data to enable greater personalization for the consumer, and to foster a better understanding of your audience, were keys strategic elements of 2016. Ad Age

Caitlin Burgess

6 Influencer Marketing Lessons Marketers Can Learn from Journalists

Caitlin Burgess on Jan 5th, 2017     Content Marketing, Digital Marketing, Influencer Marketing

As some of you regular TopRank Marketing Blog readers may know, before making my way into the world of digital marketing, I was a journalist covering the wild news happenings in a handful of Twin Cities metro towns.

While I wore many hats during those days—from reporter to managing editor to social media maven—building strong community connections was probably the most important hat of all.

Truly, the people I engaged with were more than connections. They were lifelines. They represented untold stories, interesting perspectives, inside scoops and friendly gateways to new sources, allowing me to craft quality news pieces that people actually wanted to read, share and talk about.

Now as a digital marketer, my community connections and sources often go by a new name: influencers.

Joshua Nite

26 Essential Digital Marketing Statistics to Make Your Marketing Pop in 2017

Joshua Nite on Jan 4th, 2017     Online Marketing

My new favorite joke about the New Year:

“I want to start a gym called Resolutions. The first two weeks it will have fitness trainers, workout equipment, everything. Then on January 15th, we turn the whole thing into a bar.”

I love that joke because it hints at an unfortunate reality: Only 64% of people keep their resolution past one month. At six months, less than half of us stay resolved.

Many marketers are starting out the New Year with resolutions. We want to know our audiences better, take control of our data, use content more effectively, and more. Statistically, only 46% of us have a chance at beating the status quo.

It takes more than willpower to make a resolution stick. You need a well-informed, strategic plan.

Ashley Zeckman

20 Tips to Help You Become A More Effective & Focused Marketer in 2017

Ashley Zeckman on Jan 3rd, 2017     Digital Marketing, Online Marketing

The holiday season has officially ended and while some of us are still taking down our trees and packing away ornaments, 2017 is well upon us.

The break that the vast majority of marketers get at the end of the year helps us start the new year refreshed, replenished and ready to create some kickass marketing programs.

This year, instead of focusing on being productive, let’s change our approach to becoming more effective in our marketing. Truly effective people are not just focused on getting as many things done as possible. Instead, time needs to be spent prioritizing, pushing boundaries and finding ways to enjoy what you do for an extended period of time.