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Q: Please indicate the LEVEL OF EFFECTIVENESS (in terms of achieving objectives) of using social media platforms in your inbound marketing efforts.
The only surprising part of this chart is the SlideShare info. We have reservations about that metric, but in agreement on the others.
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The recent study by MarketingSherpa shows that 32% of the marketers consider Blogs are 'Very effective' and 52% of them think it is 'Somewhat effective' for Inbound Marketing. Overall it seems Blog plays an important component of Inbound Marketing.
The looming battle between agencies, e.g., BBDO, Wunderman, against integrators, e.g., Accenture, Deloitte, is for the hearts and minds of the Fortune 1000. Put on your big boy pants.
Who has the leg up? Up to a few years ago, agencies ruled even as databases grew and direct marketing adopted digital techniques. It wasn’t hard, and only required disparate, disconnected tools to accomplish the campaign objectives. Integrators had no role.
Enter two factors: Big Data and Marketing Technology. Now you’re in the integrator’s wheelhouse. The science and the expertise are the critical ingredients for the major B2B marketer. Marketing spending on technology is skyrocketing, internal processes are turned upside down, every interaction creates oodles of data. Internal systems need to be meshed with external applications for comprehensive solutions. Who’s your daddy now?
So which is it? Can the agency adopt the technical expertise required to continue to maintain its presence? Or does the integrator adopt the right brain expertise to deliver a complete marketing presence and take over the spot? Can the two work together?
Sharks vs. Jets.
Oh, and by the way: the less-than-Fortune 1000 will be handled by MaaS and Marketing Outsourcing providers…in case you were interested.
Have a comment? Email it to email@example.com or comment below. I’ll publish it here.
Today’s curated articles collected for your quick review:
-- > What The SAP-Adobe-Accenture Triangle Means For Digital Marketing - AdExchangerhttp://sco.lt/7UJyLp
-- > HootSuite CEO questions proprietary software push in marketing automation boom - The Drumhttp://sco.lt/6bXfIP
-- > Lead Gen: Great results don’t always have to be complicated - Marketing Experimentshttp://sco.lt/88qUDZ
-- > 10 Resources to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile | Social Media Examinerhttp://sco.lt/7tIwqX
-- > Twitter Best Practices for 2014 - infographic - Digital Information Worldhttp://sco.lt/7Zn1eb
-- > Using Predictive Modeling To Boost Conversions - Demand Gen Reporthttp://sco.lt/7wUw3l
-- > [FREE REPORT] 2014 BrightEdge Search Marketer Survey Resultshttp://sco.lt/6Io8i9
-- > Facebook Punishes Those Requesting Likes, Comments, Shares - Search Engine Watchhttp://sco.lt/4hjJAX
-- > 4 Free Tools to Create Infographics #Online Marketer's Tool Kit - GetResponse Bloghttp://sco.lt/6eS3NZ
-- > Whos Using Marketing Automation to Manage Email? - MarketingCharthttp://sco.lt/6U1ILh
-- > Inbound Marketing with Hubspot vs. Without Hubspot [Infographic] - InfographicB2Bhttp://sco.lt/8kwJHd
-- > Big Data: The Secret to Revenue Creation [Infographic] - Profshttp://sco.lt/7s1CfB
-- > Video and The Search for Marketing ROI | Vidyardhttp://sco.lt/91BqTp
See ALL Top Curated Marketing Technology Articles here.
► Receive a FREE daily summary of The Marketing Technology Alert directly to your inbox. To subscribe, please go to http://ineomarketing.com/About_The_MAR_Sub.html (your privacy is protected).
1. Headlines, every time
The more users notice your Google+ posts, the more likely they are to engage. The challenge is to stand out in a sea of thousands of posts.
2. Formatting for attention
Easily break up your long blocks of text with formatting to make your posts simpler to read and skim. This allows you to communicate more clearly and makes your text more accessible.
3. Use your words
Google+ is a both a visual and a text medium, so make them both count! Don't be afraid of writing longer posts. Instead of simply posting a link to your latest blog posts and hoping for the best, add a summary of your important points. Explain why this is important. Give people additional context as to why they should click and share.
4. Use your images too
The vast majority of top posts on Google+ use images. In fact, the most popular post I've personally ever shared was a simple animated GIF.
5. Smarter sharing > targeted
Most people set their post to "public," thinking this gives them maximum exposure. In fact, there is a much more effective way to gain exposure to your top content, as long as you don't abuse it. By also adding your circles and select individuals to your share settings, this triggers a notification for those users that you've shared a post directly with them.
6. The mighty, mighty #hashtag
Twitter and Facebook have made us accustomed to hashtags, but Google+ uses them in entirely different ways to organize and recommend content.
7. Find the followed links
The followed link on Google+ has gone the way of the dodo.
When Google+ was born, it was a bonanza for links, and seen as an SEO paradise. Since that time, Google has replaced most equity passing followed links with nofollow, which pass no link equity. This includes profile links, "contributor to," and shared URLs.
8. Leverage Google+ comments
I'm sort of in love with the Google+ commenting system. Much like Facebook's popular commenting plugin, you can embed Google+ comments on your own blog. What makes this so powerful is when visitors leave a comment, they are given the option of sharing your post to their own Google+ followers.
9. +Post Ads: the future of social engagement?
Google's +Post Ads offer an interesting premise: take your most successful Google+ posts and turn them into ads that show all over Google's massive display network.
10. Interactive posts
Interactive Google+ posts allow you to perfectly customize how your content is shared, but they also allow you to prompt your social audience to take a specific action.
Another excellent Google+ post, with more very useful tips. I think I've collected enough Google+ information to give you a great collection of content to help you with your Google+ effort.
If you want to learn more, go here, click on Filter, and search the tag Google+.
Heinz Marketing and OnTarget Consulting and Research conducted the 2014 Marketing Automation Performance and Effectiveness Survey.
It's not available yet (late April), but I'm looking forward to this report: it may be the best one yet. MAS takes time (if you recall CRM's debut, it was the same damn thing!).
The temptation to write off social media frequency as “it depends” is huge, but I think that the numbers from a few studies do show some general starting points for where to begin.
And always be testing, experimenting, iterating, and improving. The line between informative and annoying may be super slim, but it’s one that you can find with a little practice.
The article goes into great depth, justifying the takeaway, so if you're interested, click through for the details. Otherwise, the takeaways give you what you need.
Marketing strategy consultancy CMG Partners today releases the results of its sixth-annual CMO’s Agenda, “The Agile Advantage,” a qualitative survey assessing the role and responsibilities of the chief marketer. The survey found that 63% of marketing leaders indicate agility as a high priority, but only 40% rate themselves as agile. And that’s leaving opportunity on the table, as the survey also found that marketing departments who consider themselves agile are three times more likely to significantly grow market share.
What are the three biggest upsides to marketing agility?
1. Business Performance: Marketers who have adopted Agile are seeing increased business performance due to faster delivery, enhanced focus on the things that matter, and greater productivity from their teams.
2. Employee Satisfaction: Perhaps the most unexpected benefit of marketing agility is employees working in agile environments report a greater overall sense of satisfaction and pride in their work due to feeling more empowered, greater clarity in how their role impacts the business, and a more collaborative work environment.
3. Adaptability: Marketers are better equipped to handle marketplace challenges and opportunities having built flexibility into their business operations. This is positioning marketing leaders to deliver sustainable growth for their companies.
The article covers the pros and cons of agile marketing, of which you are already aware, so I focused on the benefits, which will vary from one organization to another. The key: having your own agile marketing process in place. See Scott Brinker's Agile Marketing presentations for more information.
We have recently started using tools such as LiveClicker and VidYard to stream videos in our SPARK email newsletter and we’re seeing great results. This prompted me to wonder, what about audio streaming in your email marketing? I would normally link to a landing page and play the audio from there to provide a more consistent and reliable user experience. I would’ve said the same about video before I saw the results of opens and clicks on our embedded video emails. With new technologies and defensive design, times are changing.
I’ve been playing with the HTML5 <audio> tag in email and so far it has provided a good experience for me in various email clients.
And the code you need is above. What is very interesting is that the audio is playing from an Outlook inbox. Warrants testing to see if it works from other inboxes.
This report shows how you stack up against industry standards and your competitors. Better yet, it provides case studies and recommendations to help you get a higher score on the Customer Experience Index. And that IS really cool.
Download this report to:
Free Forrester report alert. Can't pass up on that (unless you're already a subscriber).
“I think the Adobe-SAP alliance needs to be seen in the context of the broader SAP-Accenture Marketing Performance Solution,” said Martin Kihn, research director for Gartner. “The vision is for SAP HANA to power an Accenture media mix and analytics platform for marketers, who could use Adobe for the upstream stuff SAP and Accenture don’t do, like site analytics and content management.”
Adobe gains a couple of core competencies as a result of an “iron triangle” with SAP and Accenture such as professional services, custom solutions and implementation strength. “[These capabilities] lend Adobe some heft with the hardcore enterprise quants and CFO skeptics who don’t live in the marketing-driven cultures where Adobe traditionally shines,” Kihn noted.
“Digital marketing has become the ‘it girl,’” as Kihn describes it. Agencies and systems integrators like Accenture, IBM and Deloitte are transforming into digital shops while the advanced analytics players like SAP and FICO are essentially rebranding themselves as “marketing analytics” platforms, he said.
Another potential side effect is the SAP-Accenture partnership further expands the competitive landscape. This is where “Accenture starts to butt heads with the BBDO’s and Wunderman’s – all of those agencies who are the CMO’s advisors,” Kim said.
The dividing lines between technology and systems integrator (or agency, to that effect) will ultimately be about budget, organizational decisions and good, old-fashioned politics. “It remains to be seen which partners in both service and technology will be standing at the end,” Kim said.
Applicable to the larger enterprises, as discussed for over the past 18 months on this blog. For the SMB, what is their solution? MaaS is a natural.
“We can complicate everything,” Shawn explained, “and when you’re in a testing environment and you start to think about navigation, templates, images, copy, colors and buttons, you just have to sort of stop and say ‘whoa’ – clear away the madness, take it step-by-step, do simple things and see what has an impact.”
It's a basic optimization tenet (even MVT): start simple, and work your way up from there.
For those of you new to the Twitter or new to using it for business, here is an infographic proposes some best practices, including latest profile and cover photo sizes, that help you leverage Twitter like a boss.
I know: every other month there's a new set of best practices for whatever. But you should keep track of them as the technology changes rapidly in response to a rapidly changing environment.
This new annual State of the Market survey asked marketers across 8400 global brands about their top priorities in 2014. Key focus areas uncovered by the survey include:
It's a quick read (14 pages) but well worth it.
You don't need to hire a graphic designer to publish great looking infographics - these 4 tools will do the job for you.
If you are looking for a cheap (or free) design tool anyone can use effectively – here it is.
In my opinion it’s the most convenient free design tool. The interface is very intuitive and user-friendly, which is combined with a large number of various templates and images.
When you’re just getting started with infographics – which is quite possible if you’re reading this post – this tool will give you great basis for creating your first infographic.
Entering the service will take you just seconds – all you have to do is log in using one of your social network profiles. Off you go to your first infographic!
This tool certainly won’t amaze you at first sight – the layout and interface are not as impressive as those of the competitors. Still, it’s worth looking into – you’ll definitely be satisfied with the variation of templates and images to choose from. Pick and mix any images, icons and logos you wish.
As you get more proficient with your infographics, then you'll want to consider a professional service. Regardless, you know the value of visual content.
Forty-two is the answer to life, the universe, and everything, according the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. It is also the number of millions that hard-charging marketing automation vendor Act-On has raised in a significant fifth round of institutional capital.
Act-On is a up-and-coming contender that hit VentureBeat’s list of top 10 marketing automation vendors. The company is based is Beaverton, Ore., and largely focuses on non-tech companies.
The $42 million funding round was led by Technology Crossover Ventures, with existing investors Norwest Venture Partners, Trinity Ventures, US Venture Partners, and Voyager Capital also participating. TCV’s participation is significant, as the company has plenty of experience in marketing technology and an investment thesis that is focused on putting large amounts of capital to work in maturing startups that have proven their worth and are poised, the firm hopes, for massive growth.
Holy crap, that's a lot of capital raise. Clearly this is about giving them what they need to grab market share and get to a public offering.
Google+ offers a fantastic set of tools that you can use to promote your blog. Here are 10 ideas to get you started.
1. Integrate comments into posts, or direct the discussion to Google+.
2. Embed Google+ posts into your own blog or blog posts.
3. Create photo albums with a purpose.
4. Use hashtags in Google+ as you would on other networks.
5. Talk to your readers via video chat and hangouts.
6. Use reviews and testimonials.
7. Get your YouTube account in order and use it.
8. Create a community and use circles creatively.
9. Integrate with your Google Drive documents.
10. Make use of events.
Excellent collection, and more than a few that are implementable now. Click through for details.
All that extra stuff may be just wasted words—and there is research to prove it. Last week I was reading a blog post on the Business 2 Community site titled “How to Sell Complexity Beyond the Customer’s Capacity to Understand“. It is a great post and it mentioned a research study that showed that (quoting from the article) “our limited short-term working memory that’s capable of remembering only 3-4 items of new information at a time.”
So what happens if we throw a lot more at them? Well, they either only remember 3 or 4 of them or, even worse, the information overload causes them to forget most, if not all of it. So, there is scientific proof that too much detail will do more harm than good.
Let’s face it, most technology products today are so robust and complex that it is impossible to narrow things down to only 3 to 5 things. But you have to. Find ways to group things into a higher level story—-add the details as your drill down, progressively providing more and more information. While not easy, this is not impossible.
And there you have it: PROOF the verbosity kills. Don't do it. Write it, leave it, come back to it, shorten it, repeat, repeat, let it rip.
1. All Guest Posting is Bad: If you are pursuing guest posting make reputation and visibility your primary goals, and you should be just fine. Might there be some SEO benefit? Possibly, but you will make poor choices if SEO is your main goal. Let any SEO impact be a side effect rather than the primary goal and you will be far better off.
2. Social Media Signals Drive SEO: Nothing could be further from the truth. There are many reasons for engaging in social media, and your business almost certainly should have a social media strategy, but don’t do it because you think it will drive your rankings in the search engines.
3. Link Signals Are On Their Way Out: The fact is that inbound links to a web site remains a very strong ranking signal, and it will remain that way for some time to come.
4. Google’s Search Results Are Broken: Another popular myth is the notion that Google has a severe problem with their search engine, but nothing could be further from the truth.
5. AuthorRank is a Ranking Signal: Little evidence has emerged that there is much happening with that as yet. The only exception is that Google’s Cutts verified that they use an AuthorRank like concept as part of their In-Depth Article feature.
6. Correlation Studies Tell Us What Google Uses as Ranking Factors: The reality is that the correlation here is that content that is likely to be given a +1s by a lot of people is probably pretty good content, and that pretty good content is also likely to obtain a significant number of links.
7. SEO Today is Only About Creating Good Content (the Rest Will Take Care of Itself): This myth is a new one on the horizon, and comes from people rebelling against SEO abuses of the past. It is true that creating good/great content is a part of the puzzle, but you still need to architect your site so Google and Bing can find it, there is still a role for keyword research, you probably should be implementing Schema on your web site, and a lot more.
A GREAT article. The bottom-line: you'll always need an SEO expert to optimize everything, from your web site to landing pages to every piece of content coming out the door.
Putting extra clicks in the way of a customer decreases conversion. Amazon created 1-Click because they found this out years ago.
To help get the one clickthrough to play follow these tips:
Which makes perfect sense: one click vs. two. So let's assume that video can play within all clients (which it doesn't, e.g., Outlook). Would you really want to do this? No, as it means two clicks (one to view the video, and one to get to the landing page. Auto-play on the landing page solves all issues.
Marketing performance measurement and management firm The Fournaise Marketing Group has released what it calls "eyebrow-raising" findings from its Global Marketing Effectiveness Program. They found that a worrying 90% of marketers are not trained in marketing performance and marketing ROI.
As a result, 80% find it hard to properly demonstrate to their top management that the marketing strategies they put in place are effective.
Furthermore, more than two-thirds of marketers (67%) demonstrated a total lack of understanding of what ROI is about by implying that marketing ROI doesn't require a financial outcome. Unsurprisingly, these are the same marketers who are unable to correctly identify the correct formula for marketing ROI. In fact, 31% of marketers believe that simply measuring their audience reach is as good as signifying marketing ROI and 64% rely on brand awareness as their top marketing ROI key performance indicator.
How utterly depressing. More and more, I'm convinced that Marketing Outsourcing and MaaS goes hand-in-hand with the growth of marketing technology.
Our attention span is shrinking – so make your marketing bitesized and irresistible, or be left behind. Discover why your marketing content should be digestible in a lunchbreak.
And THAT'S why visual content works so well.
In a blog post Ryan Holmes pointed to recent bog ticket acquisitions, such as Salesforce’s $2.5bn swoop on marketing and analytics tool ExactTarget, whilst IBM snapped up customised campaign tool Silverpop for a reported nine figure sum.
Ruminating over whether these big budget buys were actually beneficial however Holmes wasn’t so sure, observing: “On the one hand, the appeal of a one-stop solution is obvious. A large enterprise can tap into the Salesforce cloud, for instance, and ostensibly find all the tools needed to handle its digital marketing efforts in one place. But these kind of ‘omnibus’ marketing products can also come with drawbacks.
He knows better and is not letting on: the monoliths' purchases help drive more offerings to an existing client base, and raise the valuation beyond the purchase price. No one wants to be everything to everyone, but if the purchase < future value, then it's a no-brainer.
A collection of expert articles to help you make the most of your LinkedIn Profile by refining your headline, summary, work history, endorsements and more.
A bit repetitive, but an excellent list. Click through to the article to read a quick summary of each article, and if interested, click through to read the full article.
The mindset has to change from looking leads that meet a certain criteria to looking for prospects that match the profile of your most successful customer engagements, Scarbrough said. An ideal lead may have downloaded a whitepaper or a trial but an ideal customer recently hired a new CIO and is growing. “Get sales to describe the perfect customer to you. Trust the guys who do this every day.”
Using Lattice’s predicting lead scoring, CA is now funneling leads to sales that have a 30% to 40% chance of closing.
Predictive lead scoring continues to improve as companies make better use of the data they have about their customers and prospects, said Kardon. He explained that most companies have access to a small percentage of the available data about their customers and prospects. “Your purchasing history is just 1% of what Amazon knows about you.”
Smart solution, weaving together SFDC, Marketo and Lattice into a predictive lead gen machine. Over the remainder of 2014, predictive will dominant the MAS landscape.
When brands post to Facebook, it's very common, and almost expected at this point, for them to ask for likes, shares, and comments to promote their products. This is a well-known practice, and it's been going on for years.
Now the social network is planning to crack down on these calls to action, calling the practice "like-baiting." Now, if a business or website asks for likes, shares, or comments, it will be much less likely that Facebook will show the post in users' News Feeds.
So what should business marketers do in Pages do in order to not get caught up in the new changes?
This is unbelievable, and a classic example of throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Dumb, dumb, dumb. FB loads gun, shoots foot. We should take bets on when they reverse themselves on this one.