March 19, 2014

Stop begging on social, it looks pathetic

WARNING: Stop begging. You look pathetic.

Harassing people to share your content is not a social media strategy

Target audience: PR professionals, marketers, content creators, communicators.

David SparkIn a previous whitepaper, How to Trend on Twitter, I recommended that people blatantly ask for retweets because your followers want to help you out and would support you in your endeavors … up to a point.

But all of these pleas eventually start to have the reverse effect. If you constantly barrage your friends with RT and “please share” requests, they’re going to get irritated.

It’s like having a friend whom you’ve helped move once before but who asks you to do it again. Dude, hire some friggin’ movers!

The sentiment is the same when you continuously beg for RTs. Dude, hire a friggin’ publicist! Continue reading

March 17, 2014

10 tips on using Pinterest for your small business

Pinterest-images
Image by Nito courtesy of BigStockPhoto

Target audience: Small businesses, marketing professionals, SEO specialists, PR pros, analytics managers, brand managers, nonprofits, educators, Web publishers.

Guest post by Megan Totka
ChamberofCommerce.com

MeganTotkaPinterest is for more than recipes, home decorating, and DIY crafts. This unique social media network now has more than 70 million registered users, with 70 percent of them in the United States. Bottom line: Pinterest is a great platform for promoting your small business.

If you’re not familiar with it, Pinterest is an image-based site where posts are called “pins” and consist of images with short captions. At its heart, the site is a huge, interconnected online corkboard where users can share the things they enjoy.

Here are 10 tips for marketing your small business on Pinterest.

Plan out your brand

1Before you create your Pinterest business page, you should have a strategy in place for how you’ll use it to build your brand. Will you post photos of your products or your people? Create images or infographics based on quotes and statistics?

Take a look around Pinterest and see what similar companies are doing. You may find a set of themes or formats that will work for your business. With a pre-planned strategy, you’ll be less likely to run out of enthusiasm and drop your Pinterest marketing efforts. Continue reading

March 13, 2014

Google gets more personal as it becomes more personalized

Tilted Kilt
A long-ago activity resurfaces at a mouse click.

Will you be assimilated into the Google Empire?

Target audience: Marketing professionals, SEO specialists, PR pros, brand managers, businesses, nonprofits, educators, Web publishers, journalists.

Chris AbrahamGoogle can’t get hardly any of us to use Google Plus, but they’re still trying. And they’re pushing hard. One of the reasons I love blogging is, for good or evil, I don’t need any evidence for anything I say. With that caveat, Google is closing in on its goal of being federated across all of its properties, so be acutely aware. They’re triangulating us all and will soon be able to identify not merely what “you” want, need, and desire, but what you, yourself, (or me, Chris Abraham), want in particular, down to your very essence.

Rejoice! I am no longer 35–44-year-old white, college-educated, man, living in Metro Washington, I am 43-year-old, soon to be 44, Christopher James Abraham, who lives between Columbia Heights and Arlington Views off of Columbia Pike in South Arlington, Virginia, who owns guns, motorcycles, spends money on eBay and Amazon, and loves eating fish tacos at Taqueria el Poblano during his weekday happy hour from 4-7 pm — and many other very specific details of my life. Continue reading

March 10, 2014

Cruiseable: Cruise vacation planning reimagined

cruiseable-trio
From left, Nancy Cole, JD Lasica and Giacomo Balli of Cruiseable (taken with JD’s iPhone).

Target audience: Entrepreneurs, startup teams, angel investors, venture capitalists, cruise industry representatives, travel bloggers and podcasters, tourism boards and organizations, marketing professionals, brand managers, journalists, trend watchers.

JD LasicaIjust landed in Miami for the biggest cruise conference of the year, Cruise Shipping Miami, now in its 30th year (otherwise I would have been at South by Southwest Interactive in Austin).

The reason? We’re preparing for the launch this summer of Cruiseable, the startup that CTO/mobile app wiz Giacomo Balli and I are co-founding, with massive input from cruise and travel journalist Carrie Finley.

While other startups typically go stealth before launch, we decided to go social instead. (I gave a talk at a startup conference last June about The Social Startup.) The reasons are twofold:

• We’d like to hear from potential business partners, angel investors and team members. We already have three angels on board, including a partner in Google Ventures, so drop me a line if you’d like to see our business deck or to discuss a business collaboration. (Early seats at a great valuation are going fast!)

• We’re not afraid of other startups jumping into the fray. Lord knows, the cruise industry can use more mobile and social innovation from any and all up and comers! Continue reading

March 5, 2014

The Law of Large Numbers is the digital marketer’s friend

large-numbers

Target audience: Digital marketers, SEO specialists, PR pros, brand managers, businesses, nonprofits, educators, Web publishers.

Chris AbrahamHere’s the most poorly kept secret in the marketing, PR, sales, and religion world: Conversion is a numbers game. Whether it’s getting into the New York Times or going viral on YouTube, getting retweeted by @katyperry, or appearing on the 4th hour with Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford, numbers matter.

We depend not only on the generosity of strangers to keep the lights on, we also depend on the law of large numbers to make sure we reach enough people in general through our ads, our mentions, and reviews to make our end-of-month, quarter, and yearly numbers so that we secure that sweet bonus and the pool we promised the family. Eyeballs, viewers, readership, ratings — it’s all about getting in front of as many of the right people as humanly possible. Right? Continue reading

March 3, 2014

Google Tag Manager: What it is, how to use it and how it helps

Google-Tag-Manager

How to take the tedium out of tag management

Target audience: Brand managers, digital marketers, SEO specialists, PR pros, business executives, entrepreneurs, educators, Web publishers.

Guest post by Rohan Ayyar
E2M Solutions

rohanUnderstanding user behavior on the Web is the key to success in digital marketing. However, managing that information isn’t as easy as it might seem.

There’s no shortage of information available — customers, data, insights, it’s all within reach. There was a time when all this information was buried deep within web logs, as we used to call it. Details about site traffic and visitor tracking fell under the purview of webmasters and “site admins.” Along came Google Analytics, which democratized and demystified all of this information for site owners. However, it still required the work of developers to insert code into the site and do magic with it. Continue reading