TopRank Online MarketingTopRank Online Marketing Blog

Online Marketing


Lee Odden

What is Creativity? The Answer Could Grow Your Business

Lee Odden on Apr 29th, 2014     Digital Marketing, Online Marketing

What is Creativity
A big part of our identity and the nature of our work at TopRank Online Marketing is focused around creativity. In fact, the tagline on our company website is: “Smart, Creative, Focused On Results”, three key principles that drive a lot of what we do and what we stand for.

Of course creativity comes in many forms – not just the aesthetic, but with problem solving and lateral thinking to innovate and succeed despite obstacles, limited resources and competition.

This is why I think the new eBook that my friend Shelli Walsh (@shelliwalsh – formerly @shellshock) that asks and attempts to answer a really important question for marketers: What is creativity?  is so timely and relevant.

Lee Odden

If Google+ Is The Walking Dead, Should Your Brand Run?

Lee Odden on Apr 28th, 2014     Marketing & PR Industry, Online Marketing, Social Media

Google Plus

A flurry of online media has covered the recent news that Google+ head Vic Gundotra is leaving Google and that about 1,000 of the team that worked on Google+ will now be assigned to different teams. Techcrunch ran the sensationalistic title “Google+ is Walking Dead” which has received more than a little pushback from Google reps.

So, what does this shift in leadership and staff mean for the Google+ platform? What does it mean for people and companies attempting to use Google+ for marketing?

An article in the Huffington Post offers a punchline: “The Google+ profile you haven’t looked at in months isn’t going away anytime soon. The difference is that Google is going to start paying a lot less attention to it, too.”

Ben Brausen

Online Marketing News: 1/3 Of Us Had No Plan, Facebook Reigns Supreme, Twitter Gets Fresh

Ben Brausen on Apr 25th, 2014     Online Marketing, Online Marketing News

Evolution Of Digital Media

34% of Marketers Did Not Have a Documented Plan Last Year - Just over one-third of marketers (34%) did not have a documented marketing plan last year, according to a recent report from Marketo. MarketingProfs

Mobile Now Makes Up 59% of Facebook’s Advertising Revenue - Facebook’s investments in mobile are paying off. The world’s largest social network reported $642 million in profit in the quarter ending March 31–a 193% increase from the same period last year. With $2.5 billion of revenue, the company’s top line jumped 72% year-over-year. Fast Company

Twitter Sharing Outpaces Other Platforms as Email Falls - In the first quarter of 2014, Twitter sharing is up by 43 percent, while email falls 25 percent. Social sharing on Twitter has outpaced other platforms, while email has taken a large nosedive, according to ShareThis’s Q1 2014 report. ClickZ

Lee Odden

Tweetiquette – Turn Twitter Pet Peeves Into Best Practices

Lee Odden on Apr 23rd, 2014     Online Marketing, Social Media

Tweetiquette

With over 240 million users and 500 million tweets sent per day, Twitter is as ubiquitous as it gets in terms of social media.

With all that use comes a variety of opportunities as well as opinions about what to do and what not to do. There’s nothing static about best practices on social networks and Twitter is no different.

Of course some things stay the same. In 2009 a study was done of Twitter content and 40% was deemed “pointless babble“. I suspect many Twitter users would agree that a certain portion of today’s tweets fall in that same category. This got me thinking about what it is that annoys people about Twitter? If we discover the things people don’t like, perhaps the opposite or removal of those behaviors can point us in the right direction.

Lee Odden

The Importance of Story Before Marketing

Lee Odden on Apr 22nd, 2014     B2C, Online Marketing, Small Business

Tootsie Lou Lou Dolls

Recently my sister in-law, Melanie, shared with me the success of her initial ventures into a new business selling a collection of handmade dolls, stuffed animals and blankets. A successful medical career working at a hospital keeps her more than busy, but the side venture is enabling her to make her creative hobby into something more.

Our recent discussion about turning this venture into a business surfaced many questions that a lot of new business owners face: What might be involved with hiring, manufacturing, logistics, taxes, incorporation and of course marketing.

Melanie has a knack for writing about her creations on Facebook and Pinterest in an enthusiastic, helpful way rather than promotional.  But there is something that Melanie, who is a self-proclaimed neophyte to business and marketing, did that the majority of companies do not do that gives her an advantage. This is something many mid-market companies and large enterprises forget.

Ben Brausen

Online Marketing News: Photos > *, Twitter Has A Problem, Mobile Makes A Big PPC Impression

Ben Brausen on Apr 18th, 2014     Online Marketing, Online Marketing News

KFC Chicken Corsage

#PutAWingOnIt KFC’s Chicken Corsage Just Went Viral - Prom season is in full swing, and KFC wants to add a little something to the big night: a chicken snack on your date’s wrist. USA Today

Study: Brands still overwhelmingly prefer photos on Facebook - Though Facebook has tried to make its link share post format more visual, with bigger images, many marketers still prefer to simply post photos (usually with a link) to their Facebook pages. Inside Facebook

Twitter Faces User Interaction and Retention Problems - New research shows that Twitter is facing user interaction and user retention problems, with news that 44 percent of users have never sent a single tweet. ClickZ

Lee Odden

Social Media Smarts Interview: Justin Levy, Global Social Media at Citrix

Lee Odden on Apr 14th, 2014     Interviews, Online Marketing, Social Media, Social Media Smarts

Justin Levy

When I first met Justin Levy a number of years ago, he gave me a business card for a Brazilian steakhouse and I didn’t quite make the connection with the social media conference we were at. Following him online and running into each other at numerous conferences since, I’ve learned three things about Justin:  1. He’s incredibly fit.  2. He’s an amazing cook.  3. He’s equally intelligent and passionate when it comes to social media.

In this Social Media Smarts interview, Justin covers everything from how he came in to the social media world to how marketing and PR work together with social media programs to what he really thinks of Facebook. He also offers practical tips, insights, tools and resources that he uses to stay social media fit in his role in charge of Global Social Media at Citrix.

Ben Brausen

Online Marketing News: IRS Trusted More Than Facebook, Up & Down of Social Service, Analytics Out of Beta

Ben Brausen on Apr 11th, 2014     Online Marketing, Online Marketing News

6 Types Social Sharer

Customer Service Inquiries Up 44 Percent on Twitter — But Response Times Are Down - While many brands are getting better at engaging audiences on social media, customer service still presents a challenge. According to a Simply Measured Analytics about how top brands use Twitter for customer service, mentions of dedicated customer service accounts on are up 44 percent but the average response time is down 10 percent. SocialTimes

6 Types Of Social Sharer [Infographic] - According to a NY Times study, we all fall into 6 broad categories of online sharer. The following infographic by StatPro explains these in greater detail and is a precursor to an interactive quiz which asks “What kind of sharer are you?” Infographic Journal

Nick Ehrenberg

Beyond Newsjacking: Pop Culture in Content Marketing with Movies, TV and Memes

Nick Ehrenberg on Apr 10th, 2014     Content Marketing, Online Marketing, Social Media

Content Marketing, Real-Time Marketing

The expression “newsjacking” has been popularized by David Meerman Scott and the available material on the topic is near limitless from case studies of Oreo’s Dunk in the Dark Twitter ad to missed opportunities by Poland Spring.

Related to newsjacking is the practice of leveraging popular culture references in brand messaging. Movies, music, memes and more can be deftly integrated into your social media and content marketing programs to provide an entertaining context to otherwise boring business information. Beyond attaching to something that’s popular on TV, the best applications of popular culture references find creative ways to make a connection back to the brand’s products or services.

Nick Ehrenberg

The Hashtag Test: Best and Worst Practices for Social Media Marketers

Nick Ehrenberg on Apr 8th, 2014     Online Marketing, Social Media

Hashtags

Hashtags are wonderful social media marketing tools. They can highlight trends, tie campaigns to chosen keywords, and isolate conversations. The allure of the hashtag is strong, especially for brands that desire a customized platform for their content. Twitter (and, to a lesser extent, Facebook, Instagram and Google+) thrives on hashtags for everything from primetime TV shows to organic political movements.

However, like all good things in life, the hashtag should be used in moderation. The pound sign carries great power, but only if deployed responsibly. TechCrunch’s Jordan Crook bluntly referred to users who abuse the hashtag as “hash-holes.” Avoiding that label requires an understanding of where the hashtag is most beneficial in messaging – and where it should never be deployed.

Ben Brausen

Online Marketing News: Mobile Dominates Search, Google+ Popularity Contest, The Most Engaging Social Network

Ben Brausen on Apr 4th, 2014     Online Marketing, Online Marketing News

YouTube, Google+, LinkedIn Drive More Engaged Referrals Than Facebook, Twitter [STUDY] - Shareaholic looked a six months of data from more than 200,000 websites between September 2013 and February 2014 and discovered that the most engaged referral traffic comes from YouTube, which delivered 3 minutes 47 seconds and 2.99 page views per visitor. AllTwitter

Google Tests Product Images Within Organic Listings - It seems Google is testing showing product images in the organic, free search result listings, for certain e-commerce sites. This was first spotted in a Moz thread for a site that sells ski equipment named evo.com. Search Engine Land

Twitter Ad Revenue Forecast To Exceed $1 Billion In 2014 [Stats] - Twitter’s advertising revenue is on track to exceed $1 billion in 2014, up from $594.9 million last year, with further accelerated income from ads envisaged through 2016, reports eMarketer. AllTwitter

Lee Odden

Social Media Smarts Interview: Charlie Kautz of TaylorMade Golf

Lee Odden on Apr 2nd, 2014     Online Marketing, Social Media, Social Media Advertising, Social Media Smarts

Charles Kautz

Social Media at a major brand – I think many people in the social media marketing industry would consider such a position a dream job. Or in the case of Charlie Kautz from TaylorMade Golf, the best job in social media (according to Jay Baer).

While Charlie provided a very useful tip for the recent Social Media Marketing eBook we created for SMMW14, I reached out to him after the conference to get more of a deep dive into his role at TaylorMade Golf, lessons he’s learned, how marketing and PR work together, the importance of SEO and what he really thinks about Facebook.

What makes your job at TaylorMade-adidas “The Best Job in Social Media”? 

To optimize your online marketing performance, contact us at TopRank | ©2014 TopRank® Online Marketing | Top