A woman who was given a cheque-book by a bank to start a new business went on a spending spree before the loan was officially approved.Ms Devine cashed a number of cheques across Donegal.Fiona Devine, 41, approached the AIB bank to start a second-hand furniture business in Letterkenny, Co Donegal. She was told the loan application for €10,000 was looking good and was even given a cheque-book.The mother-of-five began purchasing various items over a six week period between September and October in 2013.However, two weeks alter she was told by the AIB that the loan application was being refused but could appeal the decision.Ms Devine continued to cash various cheques in towns across Donegal including Letterkenny, Milford, Burt, Fanad, Ramelton, Ballybofey and Convoy to the value of €6,778.34.Solicitor Michael Shiel, said his client, of 18 St Columba’s Terrace, Letterkenny, was realistically never going to get her business off the ground.He said she suffered from bi-polar disorder and handed a medical report into Letterkenny District Court.He said Ms Devine had bought a number of items including a laptop computer, kettle, electric blanket and toaster which had not even been taken out of their wrapping.The court heard that cash was also drawn down on top of the cheques for goods and that no compensation had been received by any of the companies defrauded.In total she faced 51 charges of theft and making gain or causing loss by deception.Judge Paul asked for a probation report in the case and adjourned the case until April 20th.WOMAN GIVEN CHEQUE-BOOK TO START BUSINESS WENT ON BOGUS €6,778 SPENDING SPREE was last modified: February 16th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:chequesdonegalFiona DevinefraudGardaiJudge Paul Kellyletterkenny
Brand South Africa is returning to Australia for the third time to meet with expatriates. This time, it will try to get those South Africans to get involved with initiatives back home.Globals South Africans (GSAs) living in Australia will have a chance to voice their concerns about their home nation when Brand South Africa hosts the GSA event Down Under. (Image: Nicki Mannix, via Flickr)Brand South Africa ReporterBrand South Africa are returning to Australia this month to meet and network with South Africans currently living Down Under.Two dinner gatherings, the first taking place tonight, 7 March, in Sydney and the second in Melbourne on 9 March, will look to incite pride and patriotism in the expatriates.The events are part of the Brand South Africa’s Global South Africans (GSA) initiative, which reaches out to expatriates living and working abroad. Through GSA, the organisation keeps South Africans updated on developments in the country and involve them directly in efforts to promote and market the nation brand.According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australia is home to an estimated 150 000 South African immigrants. Many families have been living there since the 1970’s. However, they still maintain active contact through investments, family and friends.They are also unquestionably proud of their roots, as a delegation led by the late Minister Collins Chabane, discovered in the first GSA visit to Australia in November 2014. They found that the South Africans still felt strongly about the country and were still willing to give back.In the last visit to Australia in March 2015, Brand South Africa tried to understand the expats’ needs and perceptions, and identify ways the organisation can work directly with them.For this year’s visit, Brand South Africa will be responding to some of the issues raised in 2015. The organisation will also:Provide updated information and feedback on the performance of the nation brand domestically and internationally.Share information on the GSA programme in other countries such as the US, UK, Africa and the Middle East.Make GSAs aware of Brand South Africa’s long-term partners – such as Gift of the Givers, Partners for Possibility and the Nelson Mandela Foundation – and try to get them involved. This will also involve starting student exchange programmes between learning institutions in both countries.For more information, follow #SADownUnder on Twitter.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.
Tags:#conferences#Facebook#Semantic Web#SemTech 2010#web Related Posts A Comprehensive Guide to a Content Audit At the Semantic Technology conference in San Francisco last week, I met up with two W3C representatives to discuss the current state of the Semantic Web – a Web of added meaning and structured data. W3C, the World Wide Web Consortium, is the official standards organization of the Web and is led by Sir Tim Berners-Lee. I spoke with W3C Semantic Web Activity Lead Ivan Herman and W3C eGovernment Interest Group leader Sandro Hawke.The main takeaway from the conversation was the rapid adoption of RDFa, by big commercial companies such as Facebook and Best Buy. It’s come as a “very pleasant surprise” to Ivan Herman.RDFa Adoption in 2010 RDFa is a simpler version of the primary language of the Semantic Web: RDF (Resource Description Framework). RDF is a complex and production-heavy language, so it has struggled to gain adoption over the past decade. The main purpose of RDFa is to add metadata to existing HTML or XHTML webpages, so it is easier to deploy than RDF.I opened by saying that at last year’s SemTech event, adoption of Open Data was the big theme. This year, adoption of RDFa seemed to attract the most chatter in the hallways. Ivan Herman agreed, saying that it was a “very pleasant surprise [that] there is a buzz around RDFa.” Herman remarked that “RDFa is suddenly picking up and it may become the single biggest source of RDF data, aside from relational databases.” He added that RDFa is “easy to add and when you see Facebook or others adding RDFa data it’s really exciting.”How Facebook is Using RDFa Indeed, Facebook’s adoption of RDFa is exciting. However it should be noted that Facebook is not using pure RDFa; and this is where a new standard called RIF comes in.At SemTech, W3C announced RIF: Rule Interchange Format. According to Ivan Herman, it is “two standards in one.” Firstly, it’s a format for exchanging rules between one rules system and another. For example a set of email spam rules that can be exported for another person to use. Secondly, RIF defines a rule language for semantic web data – similar to what can be done with ontologies. Herman said that it enables “simpler things than major ontologies.”Simplicity is a key attribute in the adoption of RDFa. It’s also something that Facebook emphasizes (which we will explore more in a follow-up post based on interviews with Facebook people).According to Sandro Hawke from W3C, Facebook’s Open Graph platform uses RDFa “in an abbreviated, not really good modeling way.” He said it’s because “they [Facebook] need to make it simple enough that everyone can use it.” He thinks though that Facebook made the right choice. Hawke explained that RIF “is a way to bridge from that [Open Graph markup] to the more standard modeling that we see in the rest of the Semantic Web.”Hawke sees Facebook’s Open Graph as “the real killer app for RIF right now.”Others Adopting RDFa Another example of RDFa adoption is Best Buy adding RDFa to their entire product catalog, which has resulted in benefits in SEO and cost savings. We will write more about this in a follow-up post.UK retailer Tesco is doing the same as Best Buy. Drupal 7 is also adding significant support for RDFa. It’s the next version of Drupal, a publishing system used by websites like the White House and World Heath Organization. So if you’re the manager of a site that runs on Drupal 7, you won’t have to do anything – data will automatically be in RDFa format. Other adopters of RDFa include the Library of Congress and eGovernment.W3C started a new RDFa working group at the end of January, to make a 1.1 version of RDFa. The main goal is to simplify the job of authoring RDFa within HTML. Also, an API for RDFa will be defined.So overall, the W3C is very pleased with RDFa adoption – although Herman added with smile that “we are never pleased enough.”Image credit: Semantic Web Rubik’s Cube, dullhunk The Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videos Guide to Performing Bulk Email Verification Facebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro… richard macmanus
Photo courtesy of . Email marketing ROI? What email marketing ROI? wrong. You can put in the time and energy but still sligthly miss one or two essential things that are the difference between ho-hum and amazing results. Diagnosing the problem and correcting it can make a huge difference in your results. You’ve been blogging carefully away. You’re using your long-tail keyword phrases strategically in your blog titles. You’re linking to other pages on your website with keyword phrase anchor text. You have relevant calls to action at the end of each article, and you blog twice a week without fail. Why isn’t anyone subscribing to it? Why don’t you have any followers and only your mom has left a comment? Your blog is stuffed with sales content. You haven’t considered your prospects’ interests or needs, and you’re pretty much just tooting your own horn. just Your blog is a desolate, lonely place. These are only three examples of many. Have you ever seen inbound marketing go from just okay to terrific? How can we learn from your pain? You spend hours on each email marketing campaign you send. You are very carefully reusing old blog content to provide perfect value to your prospects (and you haven’t made the mistake in the last paragraph!). You have engaging subject lines and people actually click on some of the links in the email. But are you actually Do you have a stunning, shiny call to action button? Yes. Do you have a naked landing page with a short form and a sexy picture? Yes. So why aren’t you getting conversions? You don’t have a quick description of what people will get when they fill out the form, so instead of getting leads, you get bounces. getting something from your efforts? How can you justify the time you’re spending? By including calls to action. Give your recipients something to do or to get for free (via a landing page, of course), and you’ll discover that you’re getting a lot of response from leads you thought were ice cold. You’ll even discover that you can measure your ROI. You’re not getting leads. For example… Topics: Unless you’ve been living in a hole for a while (or this is your first visit to our blog), you may have noticed that we’re a bit, uh, enthusiastic about inbound marketing. And we give a ton of tips & advice to you about how to do it. What I’ve noticed, however, is that it’s easier than I expected to get inbound marketing Originally published Jun 10, 2010 3:00:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Jean-Etienne Minh-Duy Poirrier Blogging Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack
Identifying the influencers Building relationships with them Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack In a way, PR is one of the original forms of content marketing. Public relations professionals do plenty of things, of course: publicity, reputation management, and media relations, to name but a few. But the heart and soul of PR has always been planting stories in the media: in newspapers, magazines, on television and radio. With the exception of “the exclusive,” the primary tool in the arsenal for planting stories has traditionally been the press release, a brief, persuasive, one or two page document intended to persuade its journalist recipients that a certain topic is worth their time, attention, and coverage. An This lays out a new set of challenges: That’s a real game changer. our free webinar Content Marketing . Influencers can be bloggers or others with a significant social media following who are talking online about the issues, products, or services that fit with whatever a PR professional is working to publicize. And unlike the mainstream media, these essential targets are not necessarily versed or experienced in dealing with PR pros. . They’re no longer a private, one-to-one communications channel (once upon a time, releases were mailed, and later faxed, to newsrooms). In today’s age, press releases are distributed via wire services — wire services that are immediately picked up by all the major news services including Google, Yahoo, AOL News, and Bing. In other words, the second a press release is actually released content marketing How are you adapting to the changing nature of isn’t dead in the context of content marketing. Instead, it’s optimized for a variety of different target audiences as well as for search engines. Given that once a release crosses the wire, it’s “out there” for anyone to find (not just journalists), keyword research has become an essential component of optimizing press releases for search. Once you decide on two or three relevant search terms, these terms should be incorporated into the headline and opening paragraph of the release. It’s become increasingly important for press releases to contain links to video, photos, executive bios, a company or product web site — anything that will expand upon and enrich the story. influencers End-users, potential buyers, or clients can now be the target of your press release. In bygone days, that target was limited to the press. Where PR pros used to jealously maintain, guard, and update media lists, their who’s-covering-what-beat Rolodex of who to reach out to place stories, the challenge now is to target on Thursday, July 28, when we’ll discuss these concepts in greater details, as well as flesh them out with case studies. Finding the online communities where relevant discussions occur press releases don’t work that way anymore Yet, fundamentals remain the same. PR professionals are good at helping to shape and to spread stories, and , will be published by Pearson in September. Find the Influencers (Not Necessarily the Journalists) themselves effective press release , a digital marketing consultant specializing in content marketing and SEO as well as a sought-after speaker, writer, and author. Her next book, . I hope you’ll join us for Creating awareness and enough enthusiasm to encourage these people and groups to discuss the product/service/story. Enter the Optimized Press Release the media. Moreover, they interface and target a media landscape that’s grown far beyond traditional press and broadcasts outlets. But ? public relations Public relations just plain doesn’t work the way it used to is, as we’ve seen, very much about stories. In a digital landscape, this necessitates not only finding and shaping stories, but also determining how they are told, through which channels, and to whom. Rebecca Lieb Topics: This is a guest blog post by Originally published Jul 19, 2011 5:05:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 , the PR practitioner has broken his or her own story. It’s hard to persuade people in the news business to pick up “news” once the story is already “out there.” Public Relations So while PR practitioners were once exclusively in the business of influencing the media (and they still are), they (like all other content marketers) are
Originally published Dec 22, 2011 6:00:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Technical SEO Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Since the debut of Google+ business pages just over a month ago, the following discourse has repeated itself in the inbound marketing world:Question: “Why should my business have a Google+ account in addition to all the other social networks we’re currently present on?”Answer: “Well, it’s Google, so you can bet they’ll be integrating these brand pages into organic search results.”Now you can literally stop betting on it! Finally, Google is amalgamating Google+ updates into its search engine results in two ways:1. Brand Page Updates in Organic Search ResultsWhen searching for a certain keyword or phrase, status updates are now appearing from actual brand pages. For example, when searching ‘HubSpot brand,’ a photo upload on the HubSpot Google+ account from November resulted on the very first page. Marketing Takeaway: This is huge, and it makes a big case for why your brand should create a Google+ business page and start sharing content there ASAP. If you already do, be sure to optimize your status updates. While your updates should be unique, interesting, and have a clear voice reflective of your brand, they should also be search engine optimized. Just as you include certain keywords in your blog posts to help them rank well in Google without taking away from the overall quality of the post, you should do the same for status updates on Google+. This will help you leverage your Google+ presence to increase traffic to your site from Google search, and well, will help you get found online!2. Personal Page Updates in Organic Search ResultsWhile company page updates are appearing in results, so are posts from other users (via their personal accounts) as they mention a brand and/or search term. For example, upon searching ‘Marketing Grader,’ a status update from HubSpot CTO Dharmesh Shah’s personal Google+ page is displayed as a result.Marketing Takeaway: Create valuable content to share via your Google+ business page that other people will be inclined to share. When a user shares a piece of content straight from a brand page by clicking the ‘share’ button under the post, the original text of that post is transferred over, as well as the commentary the user provides. This means that by creating valuable and optimized content, people who share a status because of its value will unknowingly help your ranking because of the keywords weaved into the original update. Pretty nifty, huh? What do you think of this Google+ integration? Can you think of any additional ways to take advantage of this?Image Credit: sasagg.pixnet.net Topics:
It’s a bird! It’s a plane! Oh wait, no, it’s just a marketer.Despite all my hard work, I probably won’t be able to fly without spending a couple hundred bucks and 2 hours waiting for airport security. (Also, I hear laser vision doesn’t work as well when you’re wearing glasses.) But just because my super hero dreams have been shattered, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t celebrate your super hero abilities … your super hero marketing abilities.That’s right. Even if we can’t fly faster than a speeding bullet, we all still have certain marketing super powers that we should be proud to celebrate. Some of us know our strengths already, and some of us may still be trying to find them. Either way, if you’ve ever wondered what makes you and your colleagues such effective marketers — the Bruce Wayne of blogging, the Incredible Hulk of Analytics — this fun little decision tree is for you.So, are you ready to find your marketing super power? Figure it out now so you can keep flexing those marketing muscles of yours. Alright, have you found your marketing super power? Great! Now, like true marketers, let’s analyze it so we can learn what it means ;-)What Your Marketing Super Power MeansThe Blogger: You are the master of written content! As a super hero blogger, you are truly in tune with and knowledgeable about your particular industry. Not only are you driven by your passion for marketing, your industry, and the written word, but you’re also mind-blowingly organized. Most likely trained by blog writing ninjas in the mountains of Tibet (kind of like Bruce Wayne), you’re pretty much Batman (or Batwoman), but better because, well, you blog.With this great power, comes tons of research! It’s no secret that a blogger’s best friend is timely and accurate information. So, be sure to stay on top of industry news, statistics, and new studies to provide your readers with the highest quality, most relevant content possible.The Social Butterfly:As a social media mastermind, you’ve got to stay focused on how to maintain meaningful relationships between your brand and its many fans, tweeps, and connections. Remember, your greatest tool is your ability to relate, connect, and use thoughtful content to keep people engaged. Make them love your brand as much as they love you! Each social network has its own nuances, and it’s up to you to discover them to best reach your audience.The Analyst:We’ll call you the Professor X of your marketing team, always keeping a cool head and logically finding solutions and better practices for improving your company’s marketing strategies. Remember to keep your eyes on market conditions and changes in your industry that may affect your company’s performance, and make suggestions to help battle these changes.The Optimizer: As the optimization expert, you must understand how your work affects both Sales and Marketing. You should make recommendations to your team on how to best optimize their landings pages and content by changing URLs, replacing graphics, adding keywords, changing layout, and editing forms. And don’t forget to try new, innovative ideas when optimizing anything for your company!This decision tree didn’t cover all areas of marketing — was your marketing super power left out? Share your super power, and what qualities make for excellent marketers in the comments. Originally published Jan 16, 2013 4:15:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Marketing Advice Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics:
Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Show Targeted Images: In some cases, it might even make sense to modify the imagery leads see on your landing pages and website pages. If you primarily sell to two different groups of people (architects and contractors, for example), and you know that a lead is a contractor from his or her past downloads or page views, why not show that lead relevant images of contractors using your product — images that they can better identify with. Context You Can Gain : Behavioral Data: As prospects move through your website (even on their first visit, before becoming a lead), you are probably collecting web analytics data on their interactions with your site. But is that data stored in aggregate, or is it tied to them as an individual? When they finally do turn into a lead, can their history of page views and important events be applied to their record in your CRM and marketing databases ? Can you use that data to determine their buyer persona and lifecycle stage ? Lead Intelligence: The first time a lead comes to your website, it’s important to consider how they got there. Are you tracking the channel or campaign that first brought them to your website? If they came to you from a search engine, are you capturing the keyword that introduced them to your brand, as well as the first page they viewed? This can give you important context about their initial interest and what their intentions might be. Forms & Landing Pages Context You Can Apply Targeted Images and Messaging: Landing pages present a huge opportunity for applying context about a lead, and many of the same rules for applying context to website or blog pages apply to landing pages, too. Targeting images is a great starting point — targeting all of the content on the landing page based on who is seeing it can be even more effective. (Note: This should be something your marketing platform can handle on the back end. In HubSpot, for example, Smart Calls-to-Action that are targeted based on the viewer can direct users to different, targeted variations of your landing pages.) Context You Can Gain Ask More Detailed Questions Over Time: Forms are all about gaining context about your leads. When a prospect or lead is willing to fill out a form, it’s a special moment — you have demonstrated enough value that the prospect is willing to give you some valuable information in return for what you’re offering. But when that special moment occurs, are you taking full advantage of it? Dynamic forms that use a feature called progressive profiling can ensure you never squander that special moment by asking the same question twice. Instead, progressive profiling analyzes what you already know about a lead, and pulls from a queue of questions to ask for details you haven’t already collected. Using progressive profiling is a fantastic way to accumulate more valuable, deep information about your leads over time. Originally published Feb 19, 2013 4:30:00 PM, updated March 21 2013 Lead Generation Email & Marketing Automation Context You Can Apply Granular Segmentation: This is perhaps the biggest opportunity to leverage what you know about a lead to market to them more effectively. When you have a large volume of data about each lead, you can segment your database more granularly and send closely targeted messages to each segment that better match their interests and where they are in your funnel. Your segmentation might leverage implicit details like lead score, page views, key actions, or responses to specific types of content; it might also leverage explicit details like company size, job title, geography, or other characteristics. Personalized Message and Sender: You’ve all likely noticed this in the emails you receive — a personalized subject line, and content within that addresses you by your first name, for example. But why stop there? There are plenty of other ways you can personalize the content of an email . For example, you might mention a detail like the lead’s business vertical, geography, or something else that makes the email feel more personal and relevant. Or, if the lead is being worked by a specific sales rep, why not personalize the sender name to make the email appear to be coming directly from the rep the lead already has a relationship with? Context You Can Gain Engagement With Your Messages: This one is fairly obvious. Over the course of an email campaign, tracking which messages (and which parts of each message) resonate with your leads can give you important insight into their interests and where they fall in the buying cycle . For example, if a lead clicks on a link in an email that’s offering them a free consultation, you might infer that they’re further along in the buying process than someone who converts on an offer to download a purely educational ebook about an industry topic. Your CRM System & Your Sales Process Context You Can Apply Lead Intelligence for Your Sales Team: Over the course of a lead’s journey — from their first encounter with your brand until the point at which they’re ready for sales intervention — you’ve likely collected a lot of data about them that could be valuable to your sales team. Your sales team can likely infer details about a lead’s interests, their level of urgency around a potential purchase, their level of fit for your product, and much more. Since most CRM systems aren’t natively designed to handle the volume and type of data that a marketing campaign is capable of generating, it’s also important for you to consider how you can help surface relevant, interesting details for your sales team. HubSpot, for example, gives your sales team access to a chronologically ordered timeline of lead interactions , along with a way for you to quickly surface the most important details for your sales team. Topics: Context You Can Gain Details From Other Sources: Depending on your sales process and the origin of an individual lead, your CRM system may be full of details you can use to better target and personalize your marketing messages. Think about the context a sales rep could capture during a five-minute conversation with a lead who turns out to be a good fit for your business, but is not yet ready to make a purchase. If your sales team isn’t already capturing that data in a structured way, it may be worth considering if it’s possible to fit capturing these types of details into their workflow. Social Media Social media is a channel that can’t be personalized in the same way email messages or your website can be personalized, but there are still ways in which you can apply context you have about your leads to the content you share in social media. Context You Can Apply Context From Past Leads as a Whole: Looking at your leads database overall, or leads from past social media conversions , are there things you can infer about your best leads that can help guide your future content strategy? Do certain content offers resonate with more people — or people who represent a best fit lead? Do certain types of offers seem to work best in social media as a channel? Context You Can Gain Behavioral Data: Similar to email, social media presents an opportunity for you collect implicit details about your leads. What offers resonate with your leads? In general, your social media posts should be heavier on content, and lighter on direct pitches or landing pages, but are you able to track when a contact interacts with your content through social media, even if it’s just a click on a link to a blog post and not a conversion on a landing page? With the tools available to marketers today, there are a lot of different ways to optimize your funnel and improve your marketing — from A/B testing button colors and experimenting with PPC bids, to website redesigns and testing different types of blog posts. All of these are important, but few can have the kind of impact across all of your channels in the same way as a concerted effort to share context between your marketing tools, and apply it to the content you create ( HubSpot’s software can do all of the above … wink wink). How big a role does context play in your marketing? In what ways can you improve? When you think about your marketing funnel, how do you think about the work you do to optimize it? You may have never considered it, but a lot of what you probably do is work to minimize the number of breaks in your marketing chain.Ideally, you should be working to carry information and context about your leads throughout the different stages of your funnel — minimizing as many breaks in your marketing chain as possible, and strengthening the impact of your marketing. And today, minimizing breaks in the chain means putting your data to use in as many ways as you can. In this post, we’ll walk you through exactly what this means in a modern-day marketing world — and how you can apply (and gain) context in your individual marketing channels to help you more effectively move leads further and further down the funnel. First, a Brief History of Data-Driven Online Marketing The Early Days of Online Marketing In the early days of online marketing, tools like Google Analytics helped us understand our audience in aggregate. Minimizing breaks in the chain meant figuring out what worked on a high level, and optimizing our marketing to make it more appealing to our audience as a whole. We saw which keywords drove traffic to our website, and we worked to rank higher for those keywords. We saw which pages our prospects were viewing, and we put calls-to-action on those pages. Web analytics fueled a revolution in marketing based on data, but it was marketing in aggregate. In other words, we didn’t have a way to connect the dots between the mass of traffic we were measuring and the real people it represented. The Middle Ages of Online Marketing In what I think of as the middle ages of online marketing, technology took us a step further. We used a lot of different marketing tools — an analytics tool, a CRM system to tap into our sales team’s data, an email marketing tool, a landing page tool, a blogging platform, a social media tool, etc. We could optimize each channel individually — landing pages based on their conversion rates, emails based on their open and clickthrough rates — but sharing data between these individual systems was difficult at best, and often impossible. Wanted to infuse your CRM system with data from your latest email marketing campaign? It was doable, but very manual. Wanted to give your sales team a digestible history of interactions with a lead across all of these tools? Let me know if you ever figured that one out. A Modern Marketing Era Luckily, we’ve entered a modern marketing era where these are solvable problems thanks to integration. With a modern marketing software platform (like HubSpot ), all of your marketing tools talk to one another, right out of the box. (And if you still use many different tools, today you might be able to glue them together with the help of a savvy developer.) Means aside, it’s possible to do things we never would have dreamed of doing just a few, short years ago. Rather than marketing to one audience with one message, we can now market to an audience of one, delivering a consistent, personalized message specific to each individual across every medium . The content you serve to each individual can be tailored based on the context you collect from every channel.There is an important paradigm to dig into here. Every time a lead or a potential lead comes into contact with your brand, you have two opportunities: 1) to learn more about them (acquire context), and 2) to leverage what you already know (apply context to your content). And as we mentioned up top, today, minimizing breaks in your marketing chain means putting your data to use in as many ways as possible. Collecting context, and applying it to your content. Modern Marketing: Context and Content The implications of applying context to your content are huge. Your marketing results improve when you deliver more relevant messages to your prospects based on what you already know about them; and your campaigns are supercharged when you can deliver the same consistent message across every medium your prospects see. You can even have a huge impact on your sales team’s performance. In the same way a snowball grows as it rolls down a hill, you accumulate more and more data about your leads with each and every marketing touch point as they move through your funnel. And when the time is right for your sales team to reach out, that data can be transformative to their processes.Lost on where to start delivering this kind of a personal marketing experience to your leads, prospects, and sales team? Let’s take a look at some real examples of opportunities to gain and apply context with every marketing tool in your arsenal, at every step in the funnel, and through every channel your leads touch. Website/Blog Content & Calls-to-Action Context You Can Apply Show Targeted Calls-to-Action (CTAs): It goes without saying that your website should have prominent CTAs on every page to encourage visitors to convert into leads — and motivate leads to take the next step. But are those calls-to-action targeted to show your leads an offer they’ve never seen before? Showing your website visitors an offer to download an ebook or whitepaper that a lead has already converted on can be a missed opportunity. Use dynamic, Smart CTAs to show the right content to the right visitors.
Hey, remember that groundbreaking, cool feature Facebook announced back in January? It was called Graph Search. It supposedly was going to change the way people used the platform … but it wasn’t really available to be used quite yet. Then in July, Facebook announced it was going to roll out to all U.S. users — again, it was exciting, but Graph Search didn’t have great data points that I as a marketer would love to use. All in all, pretty meh-worthy announcements. … That is, until today. Facebook will start including status updates, photos, check-ins, and comments in your graph search. Yep, you heard me right — pretty soon, you’ll have access to data that will actually be useful to your life as a marketer. Previously, you only had access to pages, apps, and groups that included search terms. Now, you can search for terms in posts, updates, check-ins, and comments from your friends and people who post publicly. Here’s what the different will look like:What Graph Search Currently Looks Like Featuring Dancing With the StarsWhat Graph Search Will Look Like Featuring Dancing With the StarsIsn’t the second much more useful?This new feature opens up a slew of opportunities for marketers, such as:Monitoring Facebook posts about events they’re running. Researching product usage. Identifying content opportunities based on the interest of their most enthusiastic Facebook Fans.Tracking brand mentions by influencers.And lots and lots of other things!We’re kinda bummed because this new feature won’t be available to everyone with Graph Search. First, it’ll be tested in a small group of people, and then roll out to everyone after that. But, once it’s rolled out, marketers have a huge opportunity to make their content even more relevant to their audience with this data — which is something we all can get pumped about.Once you have this Graph Search feature, how will you use it in your marketing? Share your ideas with us in the comments.Image credit: Ksayer1 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Sep 30, 2013 5:39:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Topics: SEO and Social Media
Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Feb 3, 2014 8:00:00 AM, updated August 27 2017 Topics: Pinterest Marketing Did you know that Pinterest is turning four in March? I mean, where does the time go? It seems like just yesterday marketers were beginning to explore how Pinterest could fit into their marketing strategies. Now, the site has over 70 million active users, and marketers around the world have embraced it as a legitimate social media marketing channel.Though Pinterest is much more mainstream now, we’ve got to be careful. As my mother tells me every so often, sometimes you think you know it all — but you probably don’t.Free Resource: 12 Pinterest Templates for Business Not because there isn’t an answer to your question, but perhaps because you haven’t even asked the question yet. Maybe you think it’s a silly question. Embarrassing to ask, even.But we’ve got you covered. Below, we’ve listed the answers to some of your most burning Pinterest questions in the best judgment-free zone to find answers: a blog post.11 Questions About Pinterest You’ve Wanted to Ask1) Okay, I’m on Pinterest. Now, how do I get followers?It’s intimidating to join Pinterest and see a big fat zero next to your number of followers, but don’t worry — they’re out there. Building your reach on social networks takes work and time, but can really turn the dial up on traffic and leads for your business.Because there are two options for people to engage with you on Pinterest — either follow an individual board or your account as a whole — there are quite a few ways you can get more people to follow you. A couple small things you can try include adding a Pinterest follow button to your website, pinning content throughout the day, letting your email subscribers and leads know that you’re on Pinterest, and even following a few other people on Pinterest in the hope they’ll return the favor.2) Um … what am I supposed to be pinning on Pinterest?There are many, many things you can pin on Pinterest. But, before you start pinning, you should to be thinking about your strategy for visual content.Marketers should invest in visual content as part of their overall marketing strategy, but when it comes to Pinterest, there are a few things that can help guide your decisions on what to pin.Beyond regular photos, marketers can post articles, experiment with infographics, and even pin videos. You’ve just got to make sure, though, you’ve got your Pinterest board strategy down first.3) So what’s the difference between a pin, a repin, and a favorite?Just like other social networks (especially Twitter), Pinterest has some lingo of its own you’ll want to understand as you navigate the site.A pin is essentially a bookmark, so when you find something on the web you want to keep or look at later, you can “pin” it to one of your boards.Meanwhile, a repin is when you take an image that’s already on someone else’s board and post it to one of your own. When you do this, notifications are sent to let the other person know you’ve repinned something of theirs.Same thing with anything you like: Pressing that “heart” button on a pin will send a notification to that person that you liked their pin.4) Will people actually use Pinterest in the long run or is it just a fad?Heck yeah they will. As mentioned, the site has millions of devoted followers. It’s also popular no matter what time of day it is. For example, 4.8% of American users check out Pinterest at the office during work hours.And just what are people doing on Pinterest? Well, they’re pinning pins, repinning pins (80% of pins are repins), creating boards, and following other boards of interest.Very Pinteresting, if you ask us. Evidence hints that the site isn’t dwindling in popularity anytime soon.5) Isn’t Pinterest just for women?Nope. While women account for 80% of registered Pinterest users, plenty of men use it as well. While it’s up to you to post content to the site and, in turn, find your core audience — men, women, Millennials, older generations, students, professionals, etc. — using Pinterest for business can help you drive traffic to your site, bring in leads, and even boost sales.I could go on, but instead, I’ll point you to more resources you can check out after this reading this post. Here’s our ultimate guide on mastering Pinterest for marketing.6) I’m scared to ask my manager: How do I decide if Pinterest is good for my business?Good for you for not jumping in with both feet on a popular social network just for the sake of having an account. Smart marketers know they need to evaluate if that new social network they’re considering is worth their company’s time.Here’s a good place to start: Are your buyer personas likely to frequent the site? What are your competitors doing on Pinterest? Once you’ve gathered that information, you’re better equipped to decide if Pinterest is a good social network for your company to have a presence on and if it’ll help with your overall marketing strategy.7) Are businesses actually successful with their Pinterest marketing? Which ones?Yes, and let’s get on the same page about one thing: You can do successful marketing on Pinterest whether you’re a B2C company selling cars or a B2B company selling software.For instance, Staples learned a lot by using Pinterest as a marketing channel. So has Chobani: Yes, the company sells yogurt, but it’s using Pinterest to teach people more about the Chobani brand and lifestyle through the use of different boards and relatable photos.8) Analytics. Data. Metrics. Do those even exist on Pinterest?Yes, there are ways to measure your success with Pinterest. When thinking about the success of your marketing on the site, there are two things to consider.One is how your account is performing on Pinterest itself. The second is the return on investment you’re getting by using Pinterest as a marketing channel.With those two concepts in mind, read our blog post on measuring success on Pinterest. And if you have a Pinterest business account, the platform offers free analytics for measuring this stuff.9) I assume there are some rules for Pinterest, right? What are they?There are definitely “rules,” but they’re not as hard and fast as you might think. Where Pinterest is concerned — and, actually, where social media at large is concerned — is that there’s proper social media marketing etiquette that you should always follow.For instance, it’s best not be too self-promotional, which can be tempting as a business that’s trying to bring traffic to their site. Pinterest actually has a webpage that discusses Pinterest etiquette in which they say, “We think authenticity — expressing who you really are and what you’re really like — is more important than getting lots of followers.” So be sure to take this to heart — otherwise, you’re at risk for being banned from the social site.10) What’s another way to show my pins to my audience without always linking to Pinterest?There’s a couple. Just like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and a slew of other social networks, you can showcase your account on other marketing collateral you have.For example, a quick win is embedding one of your boards right onto your website — and we’ve got instructions on how to do that. But that’s only one of the four ways to cross-pollinate your pins with the rest of your marketing.Pinterest also has a “Pin it” button, a “Follow” button, a “Profile” widget, and a “Board” widget that are all easy to integrate with your website. And the best part? We’ve got a detailed, step-by-step guide on how to use all of these social sharing buttons.11) My website is the cat’s meow. How can I get people to share it on Pinterest?It’s pretty easy to make it … well … easy for people to pin things from your website to their own Pinterest boards.Pinterest has a great Goodies page that shows you how to make a “Pin it” button to put on your website. This button helps your website visitors quickly share your work on their own Pinterest boards.