Online Marketing

Online marketing encompasses a broad range of strategies and tactics, but the overall goal remains the same, attracting new business, engaging with customers and converting more leads to sales. With nearly three billion Internet users, online marketing is the key to attracting new eyes, spreading brand awareness and growing your business online.

 

Named a top Marketing Blog by Advertising Age, the experts at TopRank Marketing are here to teach you how to become an online marketing master!

 

Browse our online marketing news and articles to find, tips, guidelines, and current best practices.

 

Joshua Nite

Values in Marketing: How Taking a Stand Boosts Your Business

Joshua Nite     Online Marketing

What do Home Depot, Ikea, Dillard’s and REI have in common?

They all will be closed for Thanksgiving this year, joined by dozens more major retailers. REI in particular will remain closed through Black Friday as well. On some of the biggest shopping days in the U.S., these retail giants are encouraging potential customers to stay home.

On the surface, it seems like a risky move. At worst, these brands risk losing customers to competitors, and at best they’re out a substantial chunk of sales revenue.

But major players in the industry don’t get that way by giving away money. They know that leading with their values is good for business. They saw Black Friday slowly encroach into Thanksgiving, and chose to support the idea that the holiday should be a day of rest, not a marathon of bargain-hunting.

Tiffani Allen

Digital Marketing News: Email vs. SMS, Twitter Trolls Itself and Google’s AI Wizard

Email vs. SMS: Battle of the Heavyweights [Infographic]
In a battle of email vs. SMS, who is the winner? This infographic shows the differences between the two tactics in terms of volume, engagement, preferences and effectiveness by medium. MarketingProfs

Twitter trolls itself on new 280 character limit
As you may have heard via everyone’s favorite venting platform, Twitter has increased their allotted character count to 280. While many are happy with this change, some are disappointed or even concerned that it will ruin the value of the platform. CNN Tech

Google’s AI Wizard Unveils A New Twist on Neural Networks
This is a story 40 years in the making. Geoff Hinton (the man behind AI) published two new papers that offers a new twist on neural networks that enable machines to better understand the world via images and video. Wired

Lee Odden

Here we Grow Again: Welcome New VP Katie Uphus to TopRank Marketing

Here we grow again TopRank Marketing

TopRank Marketing evolved from PR to digital marketing agency in the mid 2000’s, right about the time our new VP of Operations got into agency project management.

Twelve years and multiple advancements from a creative agency Director of Production to Senior Director of Operations later, Katie Uphus has now joined the team as Vice President at TopRank Marketing.

Katie Uphus Lee Odden

Talent is what makes our agency magical for our B2B clients and we’re excited to bring Katie on board. Her experience developing teams, coordinating workflow and marketing operations will help us establish the framework for an environment where each of our team can become the best they can be in their respective roles.

Joshua Nite

5 Questions to Answer BEFORE You Develop a Social Media Strategy

Joshua Nite     Online Marketing, Social Media

Last weekend I decided to build something. So I went to Home Depot and asked a nice man in an orange apron to tell me what supplies I needed. “Okay, what are you building?” he asked.

“Oh, you know, something…maybe out of wood? Perhaps a birdhouse, or some furniture, or a planter,” I replied. “Don’t worry; I have lots of tools and I’ve seen other people build things, so I’m ready to go. Just tell me what I need to buy.”

“I’m going to have to ask you to leave,” he replied.

Okay, so none of the above happened (call it poetic license). It’s a ridiculous scenario, right? Who would start building something without knowing what they needed, why they were building it, and what the finished product would be?

Alexis Hall

Should I Hire an In-House Digital Marketing Specialist or Tap an Agency for Help?

Alexis Hall     Online Marketing

The digital marketing landscape is changing at a rapid pace, with many organizations planning to up their budgets and diversify their tactics in the coming years. In fact, according to Forrester research, CMOs will spend nearly $119 billion on search marketing, display advertising, online video and email marketing by 2021.

“Over the next five years, search will lose share to display and social advertising while video will scale,” Forrester said. “These changes reflect a new emphasis on quality over quantity, a dynamic that will reintroduce human intervention into programmatic ad buying, turn marketers into growth hackers, and put long-tail publishers out of business.”

Elizabeth Williams

3 Mouth-Watering Content Marketing Case Studies That Bring Home the Bacon

Elizabeth Williams     Online Marketing

If you’ve ever been pregnant, lived with a woman who’s pregnant or even just been around a pregnant woman, you can guess it is not smart to lie to a woman who’s pregnant about food.

Well that’s how I felt today. 6 months along and in arrives a marketing email with the subject line: “[Infographic] Good Marketing starts with good snacks.” Yes, I understand, I’m not literally going to get any food out of this, but I expect to see some mouth-watering graphics upon opening the email. Nope.

Instead I found food references in the copy like “Are you giving your prospects nourishing snacks or asking them to bite off more than they can chew?” and “Make your content highly snackable”. Still, this email teased me enough to click on the CTA to the infographic: Surely within it food will reside!

Ashley Zeckman

Making B2B Marketing Gold: A Look Back at MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum #MPB2B

Ashley Zeckman     Online Marketing

Image via MarketingProfs

To open up the 2017 MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum, Chief Content Officer Ann Handley shared a challenge for attendees to keep top of mind while at the conference (in addition to tap dancing, but more about that later):

#1 – Find Your Squad

This has been a running theme for the B2B Marketing Forum for as long as I can remember. Because the conference is capped at around 1,000 attendees, you actually have the opportunity to run into some familiar faces during the conference.

Even if you traveled to the event with members of your own team, it’s important to make the effort to meet new people, “your people”. I’ve been lucky to meet some really amazing people at conferences and continue to be in contact with many of them to this day.

Tiffani Allen

Digital Marketing News: The Perfect Sales Page, YouTube Changes & Instagram Polls

How to Write a Persuasive Sales Page (Even If You Hate Selling) [Infographic]
Selling doesn’t have to be ‘sleazy’ — it can be helpful, timely and informative. This infographic shows exactly how to perfect your website’s sales page to be informative, helpful, and not at all creepy to your intended buyers. MarketingProfs

YouTube Changes Rules Regarding Videos With External Links
YouTube is restricting which accounts are able to add external links at the end of videos. The new requirements are that the user is a member of the YouTube Partner Program and your channel must have 10,000 total public views (or more). Search Engine Journal

Tiffani Allen

Digital Marketing News: LinkedIn Top Content, Twitter Gets Character & Apple Goes Google

The Content Preferences of LinkedIn Members [Infographic]
What kinds of content do LinkedIn users prefer? A new infographic shows that LinkedIn users prefer content that’s informative, educational and relevant. MarketingProfs

Giving you more characters to express yourself
Twitter recently announced they’re giving us an additional 140 characters with which to convey our deepest, Tweetiest thoughts by upping their character count to 280. They believe this will encourage more active posting on their platform. Twitter

Apple switches from Bing to Google for Siri web search results on iOS and Spotlight on Mac
Apple has finally made the plunge with Google – when you search with Siri on your iOS device or Mac, you’ll be shown search results from Google. In other news, none of that would have made any sense 20 years ago (according to Josh Nite). TechCrunch

Caitlin Burgess

Beyond Google Keyword Planner: 7 Easy-to-Use SEO Research Tools for Generating Content Ideas

Caitlin Burgess     Online Marketing

As a content marketer, you know that your target audience needs to be at the center of your content strategy. After all, modern content marketing was born to help you create valuable content that satisfies your audience’s quest for answers throughout their customer journey.

However, as the digital landscape becomes increasingly crowded with content — and you feel more and more pressure to create content in less time — you’re likely looking for quick and dirty ways to create SEO-friendly, best-answer content that doesn’t require loads of your precious time. As a result, your first stop on the research train is likely Google’s Keyword Planner tool. But, let’s face it, while it’s an excellent tool, it can only get you so far.

Tiffani Allen

Digital Marketing News: Predictive Analytics, Blockchain and Email Marketing Industry Report

Predictive Analytics: Predicting Customer Behavior to Improve ROI
As marketers, we’re always trying to stay ahead of the curve. But, does that curve factor in what customers or clients are looking for? This infographic shows us how predictive analytics can help do just that. Business 2 Community

IAB sets up Blockchain Working Group for advertising
Does blockchain have a place in marketing? According to recent reports, blockchain is no longer only for those trading bitcoin, it can provide a highly secure and transparent way to manage funds. MarketingLand

2017 Email Marketing Industry Report
Marketers are feeling overwhelmed. They don’t have the resources needed to do the marketing they’d like to do. This is evident in email marketing particularly because many marketers surveyed say email marketing drives ROI but it’s not integrated with their marketing strategy overall. Digital Marketing Depot

Tiffani Allen

Digital Marketing News: Better Text Ads, Lifestyle Templates & AMP for AdWords

Seven Tips for Writing Better-Performing Expanded Text Ads [Infographic]
Writing text ads is a challenge – how can you be compelling enough to drive a conversion with such limited space? There are several tricks of the trade explored in this new infographic. MarketingProfs

Google to Advertisers: Get Your Mobile Landing Pages Ready
Google recently announced that in two weeks, AdWords advertisers can use AMP pages as landing pages for their ads. This provides a seamless user experience when searching through Google and could have implications for page rank. Search Engine Journal