Archives for July 2015

A Small Business Owner’s Guide to Local Search Optimization

small business owner

It’s a restaurant owner’s worst online nightmare – someone is searching for a restaurant in your neighborhood and your business doesn’t appear until page 7 of the search results, right below the creepy deli/gas station hybrid three towns over.

According to a 2014 Google study, 50% of mobile users are most likely to visit a storefront within a day of conducting a local search online. Over the next few years it’s very probable that these numbers will only continue to increase. With conversion rates like these, it’s clear that there are revenue driving benefits to optimizing your local presence so that you can be seen online by more of your potential customers.

Updated! A Master List of Social Media Marketing Tools

Social Media Marketing Software & Management Tools

Tools make reaching social media marketing goals possible. Whether you’re a soloprenuer or a multinational enterprise, it’s nearly impossible to manage a social media marketing program without using 3rd party tools.

During your journey through the 3D chess of social media tool options, you’ll have many decisions to make: Which tool should you start with? Should you use specialized or multi-purpose tools? What features distinguish basic from intermediate to advanced and when should you upgrade?

With the help of Emeric Ernoult (CEO of AgoraPulse, which is included in the list), we’ve updated our list of social media marketing management tools to help lead you in the direction of answering those questions. The list below contains information on 22 of the best social media marketing management tools, platforms and services to help manage and scale your online marketing efforts on the social web.

5 Common Writing Clichés to Avoid for Better Content Marketing

blogging clichesEvery piece of content we produce as marketers makes an implicit promise to our audience. From beginning to end, each asset that is researched, created and published should be interesting, relevant, help solve a current pain point. The content will be informative, easy to read and provide value.

We must honor that promise to hold the reader’s attention and provide them with useful information. As Copyblogger founder Brian Clark says, “A great headline mixed with a lame opening is like inviting someone into your house, only to slam the door in their face as they approach.” Once you slam the door in a reader’s face, they’re not going to accept future invitations.

The Key to a Successful Digital Marketing Agency and Client Relationship

digital marketing agency client success

Digital Marketing success is more dynamic than ever and companies embracing everything from content marketing to predictive analytics seek outside help for strategy, implementation and consulting. However, it takes a lot more than savvy sales pitches, charismatic account management and smart creative to make a client and agency relationship work.

We’ve been in the thick of the digital marketing world at TopRank Online Marketing for nearly 14 years and I’m happy to say our biggest growth so far in 2015 has come from client retention and program expansion. Thanks to an incredibly talented team, we’ve delivered great results for clients and have weathered numerous changes in the industry and within client organizations.

There are no shortcuts to great client agency relationships though and at BMA15 I attended a presentation offering some really useful advice:

Online Marketing News: Twitter Gets Googled, Meerkat Makes A Cameo, Facebook Floats

The Science Behind Buyer Personas

How to Create Buyer Personas [Infographic] – Buyer personas give you insight into how to best engage with your various customer types. But before you start creating those personas, take time to do the research. Check out this infographic to find out. MarketingProfs

Twitter Officially Launches Ads Companion For Mobile Campaign Management – New tool, unveiled as a test last week, gives advertisers the ability to monitor and adjust campaigns from Twitter iOS and Android apps. Twitter

Facebook Gives Users More Control Over Their News Feeds – On Thursday, Facebook announced a set of features that will give each person more control over what he or she wants to see. In essence, you get to reprogram the algorithm. Facebook

4 Steps Marketers Can Take Towards Increasing Their Digital Marketing Budget

Marketing Budget

Raise your hand if you’ve ever encountered a situation like the one described below:

It’s time again for your annual marketing budget meeting. You’re confident that what you’ve put together is going to knock the leadership team’s socks off.

You begin rocking through your amazing slide deck, chock full of powerful data points such as the number of Facebook Likes and banner ad clicks. Everything seems to be going great, and you know that this is the year you’ve finally proven the value of digital marketing and will win more budget. This means more budget to create additional content, place more ads and maybe even hire a great agency to help augment internal marketing efforts.

“Sure.” your CEO says, “That all looks great, but what are we going to get out of it?”

Social Media Marketing for Business: Expectation Vs. Reality

Social-Media-Expectations-vs-Reality-Header-Image

When a fast food chain releases a new menu item, there is typically a lot of hype and promotion around the product. These efforts can lead to certain expectations of what consumers can expect when purchasing the item.

Sometimes reality meets the expectation, but more often than not, it doesn’t.

Anytime you explore new opportunities within digital marketing, it can lead way to a certain set of expectations for performance, audience reaction and a host of other variables.

While the reality may not always meet the expectation, there are many benefits to incorporating social media into your digital marketing routine. According to Social Media Examiner’s latest report, these benefits include:

  • Increased exposure
  • Increase in website traffic
  • Development of loyal fans

7 Ideas for Keeping Your Brand’s Content Marketing Fresh & Relevant

 

vegetable dish

Have you ever opened the fridge and realized that all of the produce that you painstakingly picked out at the farmers market had gone bad? Maybe there were a few items that were salvageable but the rest had to be tossed. You wouldn’t want to serve your guests a rotten ratatouille would you?

Today’s content marketers should be using only the freshest of ingredients (tactics) to keep their audience engaged and coming back for seconds.

Keeping an online audience engaged is getting harder and harder. They are constantly bombarded with an overwhelming amount of content which makes it very difficult to hold their attention. In fact, the Statistic Brain Research Institute found that the average attention span in 2015 is 8.25 seconds and only 4% of page views on the internet last longer than 10 minutes. Remember that blog post it took you 3 hours to write? Chances are your customers are speed reading and moving on.

Content Marketing Measurement & ROI Advice From Experts at Kraft Foods & 3M

Content-Marketing-Measurement-&-ROI

Understanding the potential risk and return on any investment is imperative for making a sound business decision. It doesn’t matter if the investment is monetary or that of time or resources.

In recent years, marketers have begun investing more and more into digital marketing programs. Content marketing investment specifically has been on a steady uprise and will only continue to increase in the coming years.

However, only 21% of B2B marketers say that they are successful at tracking content marketing ROI. That means that 79% of B2B marketers are investing in strategy and execution but are not able to track the success of their programs.

Have no fear, we brought in reinforcements. TopRank Marketing recently had the opportunity to interview Julie Fleischer of Kraft Foods and Carlos Abler of 3M as part of our Content Marketing World eBook series.

Online Marketing News: G+ Brands Stripped, The Mayor Has Returned, Facebook Gives You A Cut

Social Media Acronyms

The 75 Most Important Social Media Acronyms – Acronyms are a natural fit for social media networks. These platforms are based on short and snappy communication, so it makes sense for people to rely on abbreviations, especially for common phrases. Check out this infographic and see how many you know. Sprout Social

Google+ Brand Posts Have Been Stripped From Knowledge Graph Cards – Brand posts on Google+ will no longer be displayed in the Knowledge Graph cards, instead they’ll be treated like all other social updates in the traditional search results. Search Engine Land

Facebook Pages See Organic Likes Rise 0.2% in May (Report) – A total of 43.36 percent of Facebook pages advertised on the social network in May, according to the latest research from social analytics and reporting firm Locowise. SocialTimes

5 Impactful Digital Marketing Takeaways from MNSearch Summit

MNSearch-Summit-2015

In order to be an effective digital marketer, it’s imperative that you understand the role that search plays in all of your marketing initiatives. The search landscape is quickly evolving and sometimes what you need is a helping hand from some industry experts to set you down the path to success.

Amazingly, that is just what we experienced at this years MNSearch Summit. Alexis Hall, Evan Prokop, Joel Carlson, Kat Steiner and I took a leap across the river into St. Paul Minnesota for a day filled with actionable information that can be used to improve any digital marketing program.

If you were not able to attend, or maybe didn’t get to see all of the sessions that you would have liked, we’ve provided a helpful roundup of 5 of the takeaways that we believed were most impactful for digital marketers.

Engage More Customers By Becoming a Content Marketing Sommelier

content marketing sommelia

A sommelier is known for having extensive knowledge about wines, and how to complement the sensory experience of each type with perfect food pairings. Many train for years in hopes of finally becoming a Master Sommelier.

When embarking on a content marketing initiative, it’s important to know how to maximize the sensory experience of your content. A Master Content Marketing Sommelier knows what will best engage their customers, be it a complex, full-bodied blog post or a light, crisp infographic.

Demand Metric found that content marketing generates 3 times as many leads as traditional outbound marketing but costs 62% less. This means marketers have a ripe opportunity to create content that expertly meets the needs of their audience.

Below are 6 tips to help you become a sommelier of content marketing.