Lee Odden

About Lee Odden

@LeeOdden is the CEO of TopRank Marketing and editor of Online Marketing Blog. Cited for his expertise by The Economist, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, he's the author of the book Optimize and presents internationally on integrated content, search, social media and influencer marketing. When not at conferences, consulting, or working with his talented team, he's likely on a beach somewhere doing absolutely nothing.

Lee Odden

Influencer Content Marketing: The Art of Relationships and the Science of Software

Lee Odden on Feb 3rd, 2016     Influencer Marketing

Influence Content Marketing

Much of influencer marketing is about advocacy and as the industry matures and includes more digital marketing intentions than PR, I believe influencers will be viewed more as partners than simple proxies for message distribution.

Or at least as chatty dinner guests like the motley crew pictured above from a NewsCred influencer dinner (LtoR: Rohun, Bryan, Joe C., Alicianne, Joe P., Chad, Jon, Drew, Ann, Sheryl, Michael, Rebecca, Moi and Michael.)

It’s a very surreal experience sometimes being treated as an industry influencer one moment and then working on influencer marketing programs the next. But hey, I’m not complaining. Seeing both sides helps me empathize and pass those insights on to our consultants and clients.

Lee Odden

8 Digital Marketing Events Where You Can Learn, Connect and Grow in 2016

Lee Odden on Jan 25th, 2016     Digital Marketing, Marketing PR Conferences

Digital Marketing Events

Smart, Creative and Focused on Results.

That expression is central to our approach as an agency business and in our continuous pursuit to improve as marketers. Ubiquitous information access and increasing complexity and competition means the need to advance knowledge and creativity with digital marketing strategy, tactics and performance is greater than ever.

There are many sources marketers can choose from to learn, grow and collaborate. Over the next few months there are multiple learning and peer networking opportunities to satisfy just about anyone’s need for marketing smarts, whether it’s content marketing, social media marketing, B2B or B2C marketing, SEO and more.

To do my part, I’ll be drawing on my experiences, best practices and strategies developed during my time with TopRank Marketing to deliver presentations at 89 upcoming events ranging from webinars to events in Amsterdam, Scottsdale, London, Copenhagen and San Diego.  I hope to see you at one or more!

Lee Odden

5 Ways Influencer Marketing Can Grow Your B2B Company in 2016

Lee Odden on Jan 11th, 2016     B2B Marketing, Influencer Marketing

B2B Influencer MarketingInfluencer Marketing programs for B2B companies tend to focus on a handful of marketing objectives. The thing is, like many marketing focused investments, influencer marketing can yield many more benefits than the simple act of a famous person in your industry saying nice things about your product or brand.

When B2B companies focus on influencer marketing solely from a campaign perspective, they miss out on the need to maintain relationships. There’s a lot of competition for well known influencers and relationships can keep the connection strong in your brand’s favor.

The future of influencer marketing is bright and with business to business marketers, it’s even more important to include influencers in ongoing marketing because buyers are so self directed in the sales process and they trust experts more than brands (Nielsen).

Lee Odden

12 Content Marketing Lessons Learned in 12 Years of Blogging

Lee Odden on Dec 28th, 2015     Blogging, Content Marketing

Content Marketing Lessons LearnedHappy 12th Birthday to TopRank Marketing’s Online Marketing Blog!

In Malcom Gladwell’s book, Outliers: The Story of Success, he mentions the “10,000-Hour Rule”, which describes the key to achieving world class expertise in any skill as a matter of practicing for a total of 10,000 hours or so.

By many definitions, this humble marketing blog has involved many more than 10,000 hours of practice. While we’ve achieved many milestones from being the only blog ranked the #1 content marketing blog three times by CMI to helping our boutique digital marketing agency reach a worldwide audience, it continues to be a work in progress.

There are multiple dimensions for evaluating a blog’s impact. Here is some statistical trivia about TopRank’s Marketing Blog (thanks to BuzzSumo) representing some of this “practice makes expert” effort.

Lee Odden

A Visual Guide to Influencer Marketing

Lee Odden on Dec 2nd, 2015     Influencer Marketing

Influencer Marketing

In 2016 there will be a significant push towards influencer marketing from all areas of digital marketing: from content marketers to public relations to SEOs.

Companies considering the role of influencers in their marketing efforts will come at it from as many different perspectives as there are benefits. Luckily, there are a growing number of useful resources on the topic, including this blog.

But there’s more to the topic than what we’ve covered here, so I’ve curated a collection of influencer marketing infographics that present a mix of statistics, best practices, research and models for planning, implementing and measuring the performance of influencer marketing. Take a look, click, download and enjoy!

Traackr Infographic
Traackr: The Many Faces of Influence also Content and Influence Framework.

Lee Odden

Digital Marketing Spotlight: John Bell, VP Enterprise Digital Marketing at Travelers

Lee Odden on Nov 25th, 2015     Digital Marketing, Interviews

Digital Marketing Spotlight

Star light, star bright, which digital marketer is next in our spotlight? Well, it’s John Bell of course, Vice President of Enterprise Digital Marketing at Travelers.

John joined Travelers after 13 years at Ogilvy & Mather where he founded Social@Ogilvy, a global social and digital marketing practice. There, John drove digital and social strategy and programs for major brands including Ford, Nestlé, IBM, DuPont and more.

In this interview, John talks about his transition from the big agency world to a big brand, lessons learned, innovation, data, martech, content, hiring and digital marketing priorities for 2016. So put on your shades, no not really, and dig in:

John H Bell, TravelersYou made a pretty big change from Managing Director at Social@Ogilvy to VP Enterprise Marketing at Travelers. What are some of the most transferable lessons you’ve learned moving from agency head to a senior marketing executive for a brand?

Lee Odden

12 Major Brands on Where SEO Fits in the Digital Marketing Mix for 2016

Lee Odden on Nov 24th, 2015     SEO

SEO digital marketing

Did you know? Google handles 100 billion searches per month and more than half of those are on mobile devices.

Did you also know? 15% of Google’s 3.5 billion daily searches have never been seen before.

I remember when you couldn’t search for anything on a smart phone and now people are searching for just about anything and everything, mostly on mobile devices. It’s an understatement to say search engines, consumer searching behaviors and search engine optimization have all changed.

As much as social media, content marketing and other marketing channels emerge, there is no mistaking the value of being the best answer for buyers at the moment of need. So how valuable is SEO going into 2016? More specifically…

Lee Odden

How to Be the Best Answer with An Integrated, Optimized Approach to Content Marketing

Lee Odden on Nov 11th, 2015     Content Marketing

Be the Best Answer - Lee OddenA study from Ericsson reports that by the year 2020, there will be over 50 billion internet-connected devices. That means consumers will be able to create, consume, publish interact and transact anytime, anywhere.

Many companies are responding to the rise in information access and consumption by creating even more content to stand out. A LOT more content.

But is more content better?

Internet in Real Time
With over 24,000 gigabytes of data uploaded every second (Internet in Real Time) I think it’s safe to say information overload already has enough of “more content”.

BuzzSumo released a report in conjunction with Moz based on analysis of 1 million articles and found that this increase in content production has a promotion problem: 50% of content gets 8 shares or less.

Lee Odden

Marketing and Public Relations Convergence: Preview to #PRSAIcon 2015

Lee Odden on Oct 28th, 2015     Digital Marketing, Public Relations

PRSA International Conference 2015
Expectations of marketing outcomes from public relations activities are higher than ever. It’s no longer enough to earn media placements, distribute releases and manage a few brand social media profiles. Companies increasingly expect PR to perform with marketing and business impact.

I can’t help but state it bluntly:

PR practitioners and organizations that have not expanded skills to include marketing capabilities are at risk of becoming irrelevant.

The good news is that the leap from PR to Marketing convergence is not that far.  A great example is our agency, TopRank Marketing, originally founded as Misukanis & Rodgers Public Relations 14 years ago. Early on we made a very important transition from PR to Digital Marketing that has enabled us to bring the best of both worlds to our client work.

Lee Odden

12 Ways to Crush the Competition with Content from Events

Lee Odden on Oct 20th, 2015     Content Marketing, Marketing PR Conferences

Crush Competition Events

Creating engaging content on a consistent basis in the face of information overload pretty much sums up many of the top content marketing challenges companies are facing today.

Virtually every company in business is creating content of some kind and many of those same companies are attending industry conferences too. Imagine being able to solve a big part of your content marketing problems while getting even more value from industry event investments!

That’s what this post is about.

Here are 12 things you can do to create content before, during and after events in ways that will distance your content brand from the competition without adding new resources to your marketing team. That is, assuming your competition is not also reading this post.

Lee Odden

Essential Skills for Modern Marketers

Lee Odden on Oct 14th, 2015     Digital Marketing

Modern Marketing Skills

Recently I gave a goals, vision, mission presentation internally at our agency and an important part of it centered around the marketing skills needed individually and collectively to reach our goals.

The basic analysis of the published skills of our own team in preparation for my presentation revealed we have a collective 700+ skills listed across nearly 30 marketers. While that is quite a robust array of skills, it is my belief that we can always do better.

The fast pace and changing nature of our industry is not for the faint of heart or for those that subscribe to mediocrity. What seemed advanced in marketing skills a few years ago has become 101 level today.

Lee Odden

Poll Results: Digital Marketing Priorities for Major Brands in 2016

Lee Odden on Oct 6th, 2015     Digital Marketing

Digital Marketing Priorities 2016It’s strategic marketing planning season for 2016 and digital marketers all over the world are navigating their way through organizational goals, data and the pulse of their communities to specify areas of focus for the coming year.

Much of what drives digital marketing strategy is a mix of business objectives and marketing priorities. Deciding on those priorities helps create a direct line of sight to what success looks like. Research from CMI/MarketingProfs shows that marketers with a clear idea of what success looks like are more successful.

But what are the top digital priorities for digital marketers in the coming year?