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Ben Brausen

Online Marketing News – Facebook Gets Anonymous, Schema Gives You A Boost, Bye Bye Google Search Terms

Ben Brausen on May 2nd, 2014     Online Marketing, Online Marketing News

Guided Search: a new way to find what you’re looking for - Pinterest is introducing a new search feature that it claims has a leg up on the Bings, Googles, and Yahoos of the world. Pinterest Blog

Say Goodbye to Paid Search Terms from Google - We’ve long worked to keep your searches on Google secure. We provided SSL encryption for signed-in searches in 2011 and have rolled that out to searches from the omnibox in the Chrome browser. Today, we are extending our efforts to keep search secure by removing the query from the referer on ad clicks originating from SSL searches on Google.com. Google Ad Developer Blog

Facebook Launches Anonymous Logins - On Wednesday at the F8 conference, Zuckerberg announced the change to the social media platform, which will make it more difficult for your company to access user data. Inc.


Lee Odden

21 Digital Marketing Trends & Predictions for 2015

Lee Odden on May 1st, 2014     Digital Marketing

Digital Marketing Trends

The only constant is change.

From technology trends to changing business models to evolving consumer behaviors, there’s a lot to consider in order for today’s marketers to really have a handle on what’s important about what’s next.

Old digital tactics and mastering individual channels are being overcome by the need to create a common brand experience across the digital experience on and offline. Customers expect to access and consume information across platforms, apps and devices and in order for brands to “be the best answer” wherever buyers are looking, they’ll need to figure out what’s next and where to focus.


Eliza Steely

Social Media Marketing Lessons From the Movies: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Pretty Woman, Spaceballs & The Blues Brothers

Eliza Steely on Apr 30th, 2014     Online Marketing, Social Media

Social Media Lessons from Movies

Chances are you’ve seen at least one of these movies:  Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Pretty Woman, Spaceballs or The Blues Brothers. Chances are even stronger that you’ve quoted one of them at least once or could describe a scene in one.

I grew up with a Blues Brothers poster on my wall, had memorized the songs from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off by the time I was five, have a weird habit of watching Pretty Woman almost monthly, and know every line of Spaceballs. Needless to say, I like classic (and funny) movies.

The cool thing about classic movies like these is that they can teach us lessons and inspire us to think about things in new ways.  I had a that kind of experience after attending a recent Minneapolis/St. Paul Social Media Breakfast where I was inspired by Tony Saucier, George Fiddler and Sarah Panus’s insights into social media 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.”

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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

How an Online Marketing Audit Can Help A Small Business Optimize Search, Social & Content Marketing

Lee Odden on Apr 24th, 2014     Content Marketing, Optimize Book, SEO, Small Business, Social Media

Online Marketing Audit

An increasing number of companies feel they have a solid content marketing strategy and tactical mix in place. Now it’s time to think about how to integrate an “Optimize and Socialize” approach into the overall online marketing program.

Two key considerations for implementing a scalable “Optimize and Socialize” content marketing approach involve where SEO and social media optimization fit within the content planning and publishing process and the skills of Social Media and SEO content creators. Here is a small business example that uses an Online Marketing Audit to start finding the answer to those questions about process and skills.

Small Business Marketing Problem: No Time For Content


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

The Hidden Value of Influencers in B2B Content Marketing

Lee Odden on Apr 17th, 2014     B2B, Content Marketing

B2B influencer marketing

In the 2014 B2B Content Marketing Trends report from Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs, the top challenges that B2B content marketers face include: lack of time, not being able to produce enough content, not being able to create the kind of content that engages, lack of budget, and lack of content variety.

Sound familiar?

Stats like “Buyers are two-thirds to 90% through the sales funnel before they contact sales” (Forrester) and “72% of B2B buyers use social media to research solutions to purchase.” (DGR 2014 B2B Buyer Behavior Survey) have a lot of B2B marketers focusing on content and social media programs that require far more resources and time to deliver leads than most business managers have patience for.


Lee Odden

Where to Learn About B2B Social Media, Influencer Content Marketing, Future of Digital PR & SEO

Lee Odden on Apr 16th, 2014     Marketing PR Conferences, TopRank Agency News

TopRank Speaking Events Q2 2014

During the first 3 months of 2014, I’ve had a great opportunity to connect with marketers from London to Las Vegas sharing best practices and learning what’s on the mind of the marketing and PR community.

Those experiences have helped me take the temperature of what marketers questions are so I can apply those insights in our consulting and for future presentations. Topics that seemed to be high in demand include working with influencers in combination with content marketing and social media.  

As popular as content and social media marketing are in terms of increasing budgets and implementations, many marketers are still wondering about best practices and how to get the most from their investments. This was clear from all the questions and follow up engagement I received from recent events like ClickZ Live in New York and the Marketo Marketing Nation Summit in San Francisco.


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