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Beyond AI: Marketing Makes Way for Machine Learning image

Machine Learning

So many of our everyday marketing decisions are driven by data. Companies have caught on to the importance of gathering data, and do so now from across multiple platforms. In fact, so much data is being collected these days that by 2020 it will have quadrupled what was accumulated in 2015, according to the market research firm, International Data Corp. Data’s value though comes from using it to garner insights and then putting those insights into practice to improve your business. That’s why artificial intelligence has made its way into marketing lingo over the past few years. Something needed to be done to harness all the data. Today, sites like Pinterest use AI to program their systems to assist with ...

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Turn that Frown Upside Down – Responding to Negativity on Social Media image

Social Media

In a recent blog post regarding social media we mentioned the importance of being positive and not complaining when posting on social media. That is because social media continues to grow in use, and more and more people have access to a large audience to voice their opinions and be heard. And while these platforms allow for greater dialogue, some comments and opinions are not positive and some use the anonymity of hiding behind their screens to deliberately express harsh, negative, or even untrue thoughts. While there continues to be a growing debate now about whether social media is inherently good or bad, it has become clear that companies have moved into this space to reach more people with their ...

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Got a Second? Try Microblogging image

Microblogging

The benefits of social media marketing (SMM) seem to be increasing yearly with the overriding impact being the improvement of visibility and recognition of your products and services. Social media marketing is an incredibly cost-efficient way to digitally spread content to a wide range of consumers. Because the bottom line is – when customers are purchasing a product, they are more likely to choose a product they are familiar with. Social media marketing is really about using creativity to create quality content. There are many different types of platforms you can share this on. But first, you must understand and believe in the value of utilizing this approach because it does also require a thought-out strategy in order to deliver ...

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Time to Follow the New Google Better Ads Standards image

Google Ads

Have you noticed any less annoying ads while you’ve been surfing the web lately? In February, Google started blocking ads that violate the Coalition for Better Ads standards on mobile and desktop websites that are accessed through its Chrome browser. The Coalition for Better Advertising, which is comprised of advertising companies, tech companies (including Google, Facebook, and Microsoft), and publishers, surveyed 25,000 consumer internet users in North American and Europe to figure out what ads they considered are the most annoying. They used the results to develop a set of guidelines called the Better Ads Standards. Only ads that violate the standards will be blocked. “Advertising is a critical component of the web, keeping content open and free for everyone. ...

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Engage Customers on the Platforms They’re Using Everyday image

2 technology platforms

Many companies enjoy a local community setting where they’ve established roots and gotten to know their customers. To ensure their business continues growing, most companies have also harnessed the power of technology to reach even more people online. Some companies even solely conduct their business just online. Understanding the impact technology can have on your business seems to go without saying. It clearly is helping both small and large companies achieve greater success. However, staying on top of new technology trends, which have been changing so rapidly has become a tougher initiative. Marketers see 2018 and the next couple years really requiring an accelerated approach to adoption. So just thinking in terms of community, here are two social technology platforms ...

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Tactics to Keep Your Paid Search Campaign Going Strong image

Pay Per Click

Let’s take a few minutes and have quick refresher lesson on paid advertisement. Many organizations, probably including you, are using paid search, also known as pay per click (PPC), to get visitors to click through to your site vs. just finding you through SEO. In fact, PPC can be a powerful search strategy while you are in the process of building your organic search. Today, Google AdWord display advertisements typically appear at the top and bottom of a search engine result page (SERP). This was not the case a year or so ago when they also appeared on the right-hand side of a SERP as well. The ads were more distinguishable then from organic results too, but things are always ...

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Marketing Technology Decisions Every Company Must Make image

Marketing technology

Many companies are developing and implementing a multichannel marketing approach to successfully reach their annual sales goals. Understanding the value of their online presence, marketers have become steadfastly committed to strategies that advance their growing ecommerce objectives. And as companies’ consumers, whether that is B2B or B2C, continue utilizing all kinds of devices to interact with them, converting their digital activity into revenue becomes a number-one priority. To meet the challenge, marketing technology tools are critical to help create website interaction and conversion opportunities. So the stakes are high when investments need to be made on which tools or providers to use. The good news is that there are an abundant of marketing technology solutions available today and digital marketing ...

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How to Create Viral Content image

Viral Content

Since the early days of the internet, everyone, from YouTubers to ordinary people to businesses and beyond, have wanted to create content that resonates with a wide audience and is shared worldwide. As the days of the internet have gone on, there’s more opportunity than ever to go viral – you have a variety of platforms to choose from, minimal barriers to entry; virtually anyone, anywhere can do it. However, that means there’s also an increasing number of content to compete against. So how do you create content that gets a plentitude of shares and traffic to your site? We’ll break down the trends of viral content and how you can achieve it yourself. Viral Content Trends Viral content comes ...

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Should Your Meta Description Be 320 Characters? image

Meta Description

Back in December, Google increased meta descriptions from 160 characters to 320 characters. Just how will this affect your meta description length? Well, there are plenty of factors to consider. Why did Google do it? Straight from the source, a Google spokesperson told Search Engine Land: “We recently made a change to provide more descriptive and useful snippets, to help people better understand how pages are relevant to their searches. This resulted in snippets becoming slightly longer, on average.” Always keeping its visitors in mind, Google made the update to make snippets more descriptive and useful. Desktop vs. Mobile While the lengthened meta descriptions allows you to be more descriptive, it’s important to consider that the lengthened description may not ...

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Benjamin Franklin—The Father of Content Marketing? image

content marketing guide

Per Wikipedia (or your history books), Benjamin Franklin was an […] author, printer, political theorist, politician, freemason, postmaster, scientist, inventor, humorist, civic activist, statesman, diplomat. But among these titles, one may be missing—The Father of Content Marketing. Content Marketing is Older Than You Think “But Steve,” you may think to yourself, “Content marketing is a new concept. We just adopted it within the last decade and we’re on the cutting edge.” First off, I’m happy that you know my name. Second, like you, I thought I was one of the early adopters. Third, both of us are only partially right. Oxford Dictionaries Got it Wrong Even if both of us were early adopters of the Oxford Dictionary definition of content ...

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How to Put Digital Marketing Analytics to Work for Your Business image

Marketing Analytics

For many businesses your company’s website is typically the first way prospective customers reach you. Therefore, it’s imperative that your website is effectively generating leads and providing useful information that is attracting and engaging customers. In order to get a handle on how well your website is achieving these goals, it requires tapping into what is sometimes considered a scary resource, your digital marketing analytics. Digital marketing analytics should not be feared, but revered, as they have the power to provide you with valuable information about who and how people are interacting with your company on the Internet. It helps marketers understand which facets of their marketing efforts are working or not working and how to potentially spend their marketing ...

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Short & Simple: Infographics are a Marketer’s Dream Tool image

Short Simple Infographics

Developing online content creation is an important marketing objective for almost any company in any industry. In fact, the goal today should really be on delivering the best content possible to really engage customers and drive sales. And one of the best tools available to marketers to accomplish this is still the infographic. Indeed, marketers have been using infographics since at least 2010. The use of infographics goes back further than that though if you think about it. Remember picking up a copy of USA Today 20 years ago and seeing the colorful little graphic organizer in the lower corner on the front page of every section? When USA Today first began publishing in the early 80s it differentiated itself ...

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Your New Company Calling Card is LinkedIn image

LinkedIn

Making your business all about the customer, requires a marketing approach that includes social media. The reason being, your customers are participating in social media on a daily basis, and most likely so is your competition. Making customer contact through social media platforms offers an inexpensive, real-time, and interactive way to communicate and get feedback about your company’s products and services. One of the easiest places to start your social media efforts is probably LinkedIn. It is a great professional networking site and an influential tool to grow your business. Many of you hopefully have already put a company page on LinkedIn. But you need to do a little more than that to harness the real power of LinkedIn. Here ...

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Inspire Customers with User-Generated Content image

User Generated Content

The growing popularity and use of social media has greatly expanded marketing opportunities for businesses over the past several years. Companies have joined the conversation by creating Facebook pages, Twitter handles, and Instagram feeds to reach people where they are spending time. Now, companies need to take the next step and harness the positive activity being spread about them on social media and integrate those messages throughout their other marketing channels. We’re talking about user-generated content (UGC). That’s where customers make the content for the business. A family photo about a great travel experience, a wonderful dinner prepared with foods from a specialty market, a quality garage door installation, all shared on social media, which is now has the potential ...

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How to Write Compelling Customer Success Stories image

Customer Success Stories

Looking for a way to nudge a prospect into purchasing and becoming a valued customer? A compelling customer success story can do the trick. Clearly communicating how your product or service has helped solve a real world problem for a customer makes your company’s offerings relatable and tangible to others in a positive and effective way different from all other types of marketing and advertising. No matter whether you use the term case study, testimonial or customer success story, it is one of the most powerful content marketing approaches companies can use today. A customer success story demonstrates the benefits of your products, your services, your company — rather than just tell about them. Delivering this type of differentiation during ...

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Seven Tactics for a Better FAQ Section image

FAQ Section

They say spring is the most popular time for remodeling. For many people, who have just been cooped up indoors during the winter months with time on their hands to notice home improvements they would like made, this makes sense. Now, it’s time for businesses to consider a little spring rejuvenation project too. You’ve probably had your company website for years. You may have even redesigned it in the past few years (hopefully, yes. If not, please contact us – seriously.) You know your site forward and backward; you add images, include customer reviews, and even add new content regularly (well, pretty regularly). Kudos to you indeed. However, when is the last time you thought about your FAQ page? You ...

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Incorporate New PR Metrics to Measure Meaningful ROI image

Public Relations

Public Relations (PR) has often been treated as this stand alone category that marketers know has value, but have had trouble justifying when it comes time to report on its return on investment (ROI). No, PR isn’t a real easy concept to understand because it is often intangible. There’s no widget at the end of the day that you can hold up and say, “I made this.” The results are often more long-term in nature to track and don’t fit into a neatly laid out set of common reporting metrics. So it might surprise you to learn that companies spend an estimated $11 billion on PR annually. While both small and large companies recognize its significance to varying degrees, both ...

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Make Your Email Signature Part of Your Marketing Strategy image

Email Signatures

Don’t miss out on an important marketing tool…..your email signature. Yes, this often underrated feature included in every email is a powerful vehicle for establishing your corporate identity and company brand to a range of diverse stakeholders. To get a handle on why email signatures are imperative to good business communication, let’s consider the following statistics. According to Radicati Group’s 2017 Study, just over 3.7 billion email users send 269 billion emails each day worldwide. That marks continued growth from 2015 numbers that had about 205 billion emails being sent daily. The Study also forecasts an annual growth rate of 4.4 percent over the next four years, estimating that by the end of 2021 a little over 4 billion email ...

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Salesforce and Dropbox Partnership to Enhance Collaboration and Customer Experience image

Salesforce Dropbox Partnership

Dropbox and Salesforce announced a global partnership agreement last week to help customers of both companies get more from the joint use of their products and services. Salesforce has the No 1 marketshare in customer relationship management products and Dropbox Business is the largest collaboration network in the world. According to Salesforce, the idea is to enable companies of all types and sizes to work with their value chains to better understand and serve their customers’ needs across sales, service, marketing and other commerce channels. Increase Brand Engagement & Productivity The companies wanted to focus on two main areas – brand engagement and digital asset management and productivity and collaboration for teams working in a cloud environment. The integration will ...

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Use Mobile Marketing to Reach Your Customers image

Mobile Marketing

Mobile marketing offers businesses a variety of channels to reach customers. While it is a single device, it has multiple apps by which to make contact and engage consumers, such as — apps for emails, messaging, and social media. And today, people seamlessly transition among them all throughout the day. Email continues to usually be the first thought of tool essential to companies’ mobile marketing efforts. It’s been the backbone of mobile campaigns for years and experts predict it will remain king over the next three to five years. Why businesses like it, is because it fits the traditional way of thinking. You consider your business needs and then send out an email blast based on your schedule. Company Apps ...

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Not on Instagram Yet? How to Get Started image

not on instagram yet

Instagram is quickly becoming one of the best social platforms for business. Users regularly interact with businesses on this social networking website and seem more than willing to do so. It’s highly visual and highly engaging. And if you’re wondering which FOMO-inducing app is better for business, all signs point to Instagram (over Snapchat). Not on there yet? Well, better late than never. Here are 11 steps to get started, provided by Social Report. 1. Download the Instagram App First things first, you will need a way to access Instagram via your smartphone or a web browser via your Mac or PC. Instagram is smartphone optimized, and you will experience the social media platform there the best. However, you can ...

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How Marketing Can Ensure Sales Success image

marketing ensure sales success

Companies with strong sales and marketing alignment grow revenue at a 64% greater rate than those a little more fractured. It shouldn’t come as a surprise. In order for a company to be truly successful, you’ll want everyone – from HR to IT to Marketing – to be on the same page. If each department has separate goals, how can they work cohesively towards the company’s vision together? Marketing and Sales, in particular, rely on each other heavily. Marketing’s communications lure the customer in, and Sales ensures they commit to the final purchase. Without Marketing, there are no leads, and without Sales, there are no transactions. Because of their close reliance on one another, it’s important that they work together ...

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Four Fulfillment Tactics to Help Businesses Scale image

Four Fulfillment

You’ve got it all going on. Your product(s) and company are doing well in the market. You’ve figured out your niche and how to effectively reach customers. It’s time to start actually growing and expanding. But are you really ready to scale the business? Sure, more customers are great, but with more customers come more logistic challenges. Let’s just say for example, you have a high-end, custom-wrapped product that requires a focused level of detail regarding preparation and packaging. Or perhaps, you’re planning on adding additional sales channels and now need to be prepared to ship 10 times the amount your operations currently handle. The fulfillment and distribution of your products is that often not talked about aspect of marketing ...

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Conduct Small Market Research Projects to Help Your Business Grow image

Market Research

Market research is important. There’s no way to get around it. Whether you’re in start-up mode or an established company, it provides an important foundation for your marketing decision-making. It helps you learn about your market, potential customers, and the competitive environment. Additionally, it offers valuable insight that can help minimize risks associated with managing your marketing mix and the various elements of more long-term marketing planning. There are several key marketing tactics that businesses can make with market research information, such as: Establish price Emphasize selected product features Choose type of advertising Design promotional messages Understanding the consumer and your product’s position relative to the competition will produce the results you’re looking for. That’s why from the onset market ...

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5 Tactics to Keep Your Digital Marketing on Track image

Digital Marketing 5 Tactics

Most businesses understand the value of digital marketing to attract and retain customers. Most businesses have at the very least a company website, a Facebook page, and a Google My Business page. What they might not realize is that this constitutes the start of a digital marketing campaign or plan. What? Wait. You didn’t ever consider digital activities in those terms. Well it is a strategic marketing initiative, and you really need to keep it on track. Let’s first define digital marketing to include all your online marketing efforts like Google searches, SEO, email campaigns, social media, display ads, and company website. You may be doing a few or all of these activities, adding new digital aspects as time has ...

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