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Author Archive: Lee Odden


Lee Odden

Online Reputation Book Review: Repped by Andy Beal

4 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Mar 13th, 2014 in Online Marketing, Reputation Management |

Online Reputation BookMany years ago when the role of search in brand reputation was really coming into it’s own, Public Relations and SEO were becoming unlikely partners as way to position positive messages about brands and individuals in search results. The combination of Search and PR was actually the genesis of TopRank Marketing.

As Google became a powerful reputation engine, the need for individuals and brands to monitor and manage their online reputations increased too.

Today, with billions of internet users empowered to post content anytime, anywhere, the articles and presentations we originally published on Online Reputation Management (ORM) are even more important today. And yet there are thousands of brands and even more individuals that are oblivious and in dire need of ORM.

Lee Odden

5 LinkedIn Marketing Tips to Optimize Your Social Media Success

5 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Mar 11th, 2014 in LinkedIn, Online Marketing, Social Media, Social Media Marketing World |
LinkedIn

Image source: Slideshare

Last week we published the first Social Media Marketing World conference eBook and while it’s had over 15,000 views on Slideshare and many thousands of views here already, I think we’ve just seen the tip of the iceberg.

As a robust sized eBook, it’s full of practical advice including platform specific tips like the following 5 nuggets about LinkedIn.

With over 277 million members, 3.5 million active company profiles and 187 million unique visitors across LinkedIn web properties, there’s a remarkable opportunity for companies to connect with business professionals on LinkedIn. Luckily, when we interviewed a selection of SMMW14 speakers, 5 of them gave specific tips about how to optimize LinkedIn for social media marketing. Here are their excerpts from the SMMW14 eBook:

Lee Odden

What’s the One Most Important Skill for a Content Marketer?

20 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Mar 10th, 2014 in Content Marketing |

content marketing empathyFocus and simplicity help ideas grow.

The changing, competitive and often complex world of content marketing could use some simplification and that’s why it was refreshing to get the following question recently:

What’s the one thing that has been instrumental for you to be successful at content marketing?

My gut reaction of course was, there is no “one thing”. There are many things and they vary depending on the industry, types of product/services, target audience, maturity of the company’s marketing, resources, timeframe and so on. In fact, I posted about an array digital marketing skills just 2 weeks ago.

But really, for me there is one thing that seems to stand out.

Lee Odden

Riding the Waves of Social Media – 38 Social Media Marketing Tips from #SMMW14

8 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Mar 6th, 2014 in Marketing PR Conferences, Social Media, Social Media Marketing World |

Lee Odden SurfingA few years back while vacationing in Oahu, we decided to take surfing lessons. Well, everyone but me.

I made up all kinds of excuses but when I saw my 8 year old daughter pop up like it was nothing, I had to try. The guy running the lessons had really been around and the young men helping him were clearly “all-in” for the surfing life. They were experts. With their help and my daughter’s example, I quickly went from disinterested to being eager to go again.

That story reminds me of how a lot of marketers take a turn with their digital and social media marketing skills. Getting inspired and then connected with people that really know what they’re doing can be a direct line from zero to social media hero.

Lee Odden

5 Ways to Grow Your Blog Community and Readership

16 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Mar 4th, 2014 in Blogging |

Grow Blog CommunityThe more relevant readers of your blog content, the more opportunities to attract, engage and convert those readers in your online sales efforts.

Content marketing, brand publishing, media sites that blog, and consumer publishing are all competitors for the time and attention of your target audience.

So how can a company increase the number of readers of its blog content?

Here are 5 tips I’ve implemented with many companies and for ourselves over the years.

1. Facts tell, but stories sell. Tell stories! Whatever it is that you’re trying to communicate – boring, exciting or neither – always think of what “the story” is. You can find good stories in anything.  Use metaphors and analogies as inspiration for stories. Facts and statistics do have their place of course and can provide some very compelling logic behind an interesting story.

Lee Odden

The One Question You Must Ask And Answer to Win With Social Media Marketing

3 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Mar 3rd, 2014 in Blogging, Content Marketing, Online Marketing, Social Media |

Understand the Why of Your Social Media Marketing“Can we increase our blog readership by 50% in the next 6 months?”

If you’re a digital marketing or social media professional, questions like this are probably pretty familiar.

For many companies, specific goals are a godsend since social media marketing is still a bit of an uncertainty. It gives those who are responsible for implementation something more tangible to focus their efforts on. I’ve seen it happen many times where an objective like this is communicated by a marketing director or VP and the marketing team jumped all over themselves and each other to provide compelling answers.

But I have to just shake my head when that happens.

Lee Odden

6 Upcoming Marketing and PR Events to Learn About Influencer, Social and Content Marketing

4 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Feb 27th, 2014 in Content Marketing World, Marketing PR Conferences, Online Marketing, PR Conferences, Social Media Marketing World |

Marketing & Public Relations I’ve always said, “The best part about Minnesota Winters is leaving for somewhere warm.”

Over the next 2 months or so, that’s exactly what I’ll be doing and I’d like to invite you to join me at one or more of these 6 upcoming events in cities that range from San Francisco to New York to Denver to learn about integrated marketing topics with a particular emphasis on the role of influencers and content.

Beyond content and social media marketing, these events and conferences will cover a wide variety of essential digital marketing knowledge, so there’s plenty to learn, numerous smarties to network with and in some cases, a little warmer weather to be enjoyed.

Lee Odden

Essential Digital Marketing Skills for Content Marketers in 2014

6 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Feb 24th, 2014 in Content Marketing, Integrated Marketing |

digital marketing skillsLike many other digital marketing agencies, we’ve been on the hunt for digital and content marketing talent on a continuous basis over the past few years. Increased demand and competition are driving the need to find people with skills that can actually create impact, vs. fuzzy “potential”.

Companies looking for agencies are in the same boat, challenged to find partners that can actually affect business goals. Sadly, there are few knights in shining content marketing armor, like our friend to the right.

In both cases, the ease of publishing online makes it easy for individuals and agencies to present expertise – whether they really have it or not.  There are a few ways to sift through the fluff and puff and one of them is knowing what skills, capabilities and experience your business actually needs.

Lee Odden

Essential Stages of Content Marketing Evolution – If You’re Not Growing, You’re Dying

11 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Feb 20th, 2014 in Content Marketing |

content marketing evolutionAn important part of developing skills and expertise is to understand where you fall on a continuum of what’s possible and then take action to evolve and advance accordingly.

With so much digital marketing advice and information on the web, it’s easy to follow along with the latest best practices. But what about 1 or 2 years from now? How valuable would it be to anticipate the challenges and opportunities beyond the current 6 or 12 months of marketing planning?

What is in your future for content marketing?

Along these lines, I’ve been developing a model of content marketing maturity to help companies better understand where they are and where they could be with their own content marketing and as a guide for using outside content marketing services. This is especially relevant as the need to develop more integrated strategies has become the minimum to compete.

Lee Odden

New Rules for SEO Mechanics & Link Building – It’s a Race You’re Probably Not Winning

11 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Feb 17th, 2014 in Online Marketing, Search Engine Strategies, SEO |

SEO Race to WinLast week I attended and presented at the SES conference in London where online marketers from all over Europe and as far away as Australia converged to learn about integrated marketing and paid, earned, and owned media.

With it’s history in search marketing, the conference complemented presentations on digital marketing with sessions on SEO as well.

Making sure content is easy to find by the right audience in search is an important part of our consulting at TopRank Marketing, so I am acutely aware of the changes in the search optimization world from Panda to Penguin to Hummingbird. Regardless, as a content and social media focused marketer, it was interesting to hear the shift in current SEO and link building best practices.

Lee Odden

9 Tools to Discover Influencers in Your Industry

26 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Feb 12th, 2014 in Digital Marketing, Online Marketing |

Influencer Discovery Tools

The tide of influence hunting on the web is rising beyond public relations and social media to digital marketing at large.  In particular, there’s growing attention being directed towards influencers as gateways to new audiences.

Influence as the ability for a person to inspire action amongst a community is a very powerful thing and therefore, increasingly appreciated by digital marketing and PR pros alike. An influencer program that identifies, qualifies, engages and maintains relationships with industry influencers can serve as a formidable “force multiplier” for everything from content amplification to product feedback to content co-creation

Beyond the “brandividual endorsement”, people with a strong center of influence can provide valuable context and credibility to a company seeking to connect with an audience of buyers. But in an age of information overload and the ability for anyone, anywhere to publish, finding those influential connections in your industry can prove to be a challenge.

Lee Odden

Does It Still Make Sense For Companies to Blog?

33 Comments | Posted by Lee Odden on Feb 10th, 2014 in Blogging, Brand Management, Online Marketing |

Grand Central Station NYCOver the past 10 years I’ve had more than enough opportunities to consider whether the investment in time and resources to blog has been worth it.

Blogging for business is a question I think many companies ask themselves as they look at current trends towards time more spent on social networks and changing consumer consumption trends, especially with mobile.

This question came to light recently via Stephen Waddington, Digital and Social Media Director at  Ketchum Europe who pinged me for an opinion on the future of global blogging for a blog post he was researching. And that got me thinking:

Does it still make sense for companies to blog?

One way to answer that question is to take a look at how many blogs there are and whether the number is increasing:

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