Archives for January 2017

The New Face of LinkedIn: What You Need to Know About the Redesign

 Even the most starched-shirt professional can use a new look every now and then. Skinny and wide neckties go in and out of fashion. Hemlines trend up and down. You can be fashionable and professional at the same time.

All of which to say, LinkedIn has started to roll out a substantial redesign. Not everyone has it yet, but it’s coming soon for everyone, and it’s definitely a bid to keep up with the cutting edge of web design.

The redesign cleans up the interface substantially, fully committing to the card-based look the site has been flirting with for the past two years. Icons are simplified and are a closer match to the mobile experience. And some features that were hard to find before are now front-and-center.

5 Common Challenges All Digital Marketers Face & How to Own Them

Big or small, B2B or B2C there are a core set of challenges that all marketers face. The extremity of these challenges will vary from brand to brand and person to person but undoubtedly exist within every organization.

Within the last few years alone, it now takes 52% more touches to close a deal than it did in the years prior. Yikes! Those aren’t the best odds, and now that marketing is becoming even more responsible for sales (not that that’s a bad thing), the modern marketer is stressed out.

But don’t fret, you’re not alone. The first step to overcoming your obstacles is identifying what they are. Once you know what’s in front of you, it’s much easier to tackle them one piece at a time.

Online Marketing News: The New Influence, Facebook Trend Overhaul, Snapchat TV Style

The Future of Influencer Marketing Research Report 2017
TopRank Marketing and Traackr, in partnership with Altimeter, released a brand new report this week. The goal of this report was to clarify the definition and meaning of influencer marketing and provide solid future direction to influencer marketing programs through research. For example, 71% of marketers said their influencer marketing programs are strategic or highly strategic, but account for less than 10% of total marketing budget. As Lee said in his blog post: “Clearly, enterprise companies need to put their money where their strategy is.” Online Marketing Blog.

Facebook Overhauls Trending and Will Now Show the Same Topics to Everyone
Facebook announced on Wednesday that it won’t be personalizing their list of trending topics going forward, meaning that everybody will see the same stories in Facebook’s Trending section without consideration given to location. This is done in an effort to help users avoid missing important news. Entrepreneur

Influence 2.0 – The Future of Influencer Marketing Research Report 2017

influencer marketing 2.0
What does “influencer marketing” mean to you?

Are you thinking of celebrities posting product photos to Instagram? Or having a famous YouTuber run a contest for a meet and greet at an event? Why not send products to bloggers in the hopes that they’ll do a review and say nice things?

Surely that’s not all enterprise marketers think of when it comes to the possible outcomes with influencer relationships.

The promise of brands collaborating or outright paying influential individuals to create content that lifts the brand’s credibility and reach to sell more products is something that companies of all sizes have been hot on – especially in the past 12 months.

With a groundswell of interest, there are many divergent interpretations of what influencer marketing really means.

How to Create Best Answer Content: 6 Inspiring Examples

Undoubtedly you’ve heard the expression “content shock,” coined by marketing expert Mark Schaefer.

With immense respect, I have to admit: I don’t believe in it.

The idea that there’s so much content out there, people are tired of content altogether? That no one’s giving new content a chance? That it’s too hard to get new content seen?

Not buying it.

I think what’s happening is simply this: People don’t want “content.”

They want answers to questions. They want a few minutes of entertainment. They want to learn something new. They want what they were searching for in the first place.

To reach our audience, we need to stop creating content and start producing the best answer to their queries.  Companies that adopt this content marketing strategy tend to top search engine rankings (Top…rankings…there’s an agency name in there somewhere, I can feel it).

The B2B Buying Disconnect: 5 Opportunities for Increasing Influence with Technology Buyers

Thanks to the internet, social media and mobile technologies, buyer’s are more self-directed than ever before, using these tools to conduct independent research that informs important purchasing decisions for themselves and the companies they work for.

However when it comes to B2B buyers, specifically those looking to purchase tools and software from technology vendors, while independent research is a major trend, 60% say their vendor is an influential part of the purchasing process, according to TrustRadius’ new report, The B2B Buying Disconnect.

Of course, that’s not the whole story. While technology vendors—namely their marketing and sales teams—play an undeniably important role in the purchasing process, they may be missing the mark or leaving opportunities on the table by focusing on the wrong things. And that’s precisely what TrustRadius’ study aimed to uncover.

10 B2C Brands Crushing it with Instagram Video Content in 2017

The writing on the wall became very apparent last year: 2017 would be the year of video. In almost every marketing predictions post for 2017, video was highlighted as an area that marketers need to incorporate in order to remain competitive.

Video offers a great format for telling your story (or more importantly, the story of your customers) and connecting with your target audience. In 2016, eMarketer found that over 60% of brands planned on investing more in video in the next 12 months.

That means, competition for audience eyes will only get more competitive as brands begin to figure out what video mix works best for their marketing. Unfortunately, finding the right style and type of video for your brand can often be the toughest step.

Online Marketing News: Millennials Love UGC, Voice Search and Goodbye Vine

How Millennials and Baby Boomers Consume User-Generated Content [Infographic]
47% of millennials trust user-generated content, vs. 36% of their baby boomer counterparts. However, each generation shared a relative distrust of content created by brands. This infographic shows the generation gap of UGC. HubSpot

Survey: 60 percent of voice users want more answers and fewer search results
People who use voice search — the majority of whom prefer to do so in private vs. public — use it because it’s fast, doesn’t require reading, and gives you fewer answers to sort through. What does voice search mean for the future of search marketing? Search Engine Land

Would You Rather: 6 Ways to Tell if Your Digital Marketing Agency is the Right Fit

Today’s increasingly competitive landscape requires that marketers focus on activities that will have the biggest impact in order to capture and keep the attention of potential customers. With over 200 million people utilizing ad blocking technology, it’s clear that an integrated digital marketing strategy has to be implemented in order to reach target customers.

To develop and execute a successful marketing program, many brands large and small  look to digital marketing agencies to help guide their strategy and execution to maximize the impact of their efforts. However, as most of you have discovered at some point, those agency relationships don’t always work out as you anticipate. Once the wooing stage has passed, you may find that you have more work and results aren’t meeting expectations.

Working Together in Perfect Harmony: Digital Advertising + Content 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.

5 Email Marketing Platforms for the Modern Marketer

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.