Archive for November 2011

Is Email Dead Yet?

November 15, 2011

If you missed last Luncheon with Simms Jenkins,  you will find below some great tips from Simms’ presentation!

By Simms Jenkins, CEO of BrightWave Marketing

Is Email Dead Yet?
Hardly. With new business models centered on email as the “product”, the return on investment still surging and innovation occurring in the email channel, email marketing is the go to marketing platform for any digital marketer.  BrightWave Marketing CEO Simms Jenkins spoke about the innovations of the hot again email channel and talked about where email is headed in the future. Jenkins, also the author of “The Truth About Email Marketing” presented how top brands and technology are making email marketing go beyond customer retention, loyalty and sales.  Additionally, Jenkins covered how email plays a crucial role in emerging digital platforms, such as social and mobile.  The questions of how email and social live together was not only addressed but real examples of how to better leverage the channels for the sake of your brand and sales were demonstrated as well. Be sure to review the presentation and discover insights into key industry trends and the road map of the future of email marketing

  • the “new” best practices
  • Learn from leading-edge case study examples
  • Understand how to better position email internally and find the right budget, partners and resources
  • Learn the latest research on how consumers view email in a Facebook world
  • Understand how to integrate email into complimentary channels like social, mobile and other emerging areas
  • Hear real examples from leading brands on how and what customers prefer for digital messaging
  • Discover why it is not an “either or” world but how to best position email as the hub of these communications internally and externally
  • Find out how Social check in, Qr Codes, SMS, Facebook and more can take your email program to the next level
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Top 5 Ways Businesses Can Use QR Codes

November 15, 2011

by Thomas Harpointner, CEO of AIS Media Inc.

U.S. QR code (“Quick Response Code”) usage is increasing – rapidly.  comScore reported in June 2011 that 14 million U.S. mobile users (6.2% of the total mobile audience) scanned a QR code on their mobile device. Not surprisingly, the study revealed that nearly 50% of a scanned QR code resulted from a printed magazine or newspaper. Over 23% scanned a QR code from a flyer, poster or kiosk. However, what may surprise you is that over 27% of users scanned a QR code from a website on a PC.

Here are some creative ways you can put QR codes to use:

    1. Contact info. Use a QR code on your business card that links to a landing page which contains all of your contact information and social network profiles on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc. You can also link a QR code to a map, providing directions to your business along with hours of operation.
    1. Product details.This can be particularly useful for retailers. Link a QR code to a webpage which contains more detailed information about a product including pictures, technical specifications, and user guides. QR codes can link to just about any type of content and provide additional information, including photos, reviews, directions, event schedules and even videos. Best Buy has already added QR codes next to most of their product labels and Home Depot plans to have a QR associated with every item in their store.Be sure to link to a mobile version of your website or webpage to provide customers the best possible experience.
    1. Discounts, promotions and giveaways. Use QR codes on your website, your advertisements and throughout your store to reward customers for their patronage and increase customer loyalty. Bluefly.com used a QR code during a 45 second TV commercial for “The Real Housewives of New York City”. Viewers who scanned the code were rewarded with a link to a special video episode and received a discount of $30 off $150 at Bluefly.com.You can take it one step further and tie in the viral power of social media marketing by rewarding users for Facebook ‘Likes’ and Twitter retweets.
    1. Use QR codes to increase your Fans, Followers and Subscribers. Link a QR code to a mobile-friendly landing page that contains Facebook ‘Like’ button, a link to your Twitter page or email sign-up form to create a greater level of engagement among your in-store visitors. Just be sure you provide people a compelling reason to scan your QR code and connect with you online. Keep in mind that the majority of people who connect with brands on social networks or subscribe to email lists do so to get special deals.
  1. Integrate the viral marketing power of social media into your QR code strategy. If you’ve developed a great offer around your QR code, you’ll want to spread the word – as quickly and cost-effectively as possible. A great way to help achieve this is by empowering users to spread the word about your offer to their social network. Likify enables you to create a QR code that links directly to your business Facebook page ‘Like’ button.
Creative QR Code Example - AIS Media, Inc.
Creative QR Code Example – AIS Media, Inc.

The comScore study also analyzed the source and location of QR code scanning and found that users are most likely to scan QR codes found in newspapers, magazines, on product packaging and do so while at home or in a store.

Reading a QR code on your smartphone requires a QR code reader app such as Red Laser or I-Nigma, both of which are available for free.

To create a QR code, you’ll need a QR generator such as Kaywa, which enables you to create QR codes that link to a web page, video, text, phone numbers, or SMS. Kerem Erkan offers more extensive capabilities and the option to customize the color and format of your QR code..

Business QR Code Usage [infographic] AIS Media, Inc.

QR codes produce measurable results.

Since QR codes typically link to web pages, videos, images etc., it’s easy to measure performance. You can link your QR code to a specific web page (preferably mobile-optimized) and use a URL shortener such as bit.ly or goo.gl. Both services offer you the option of creating a QR code and provide useful performance analytics.

Have you used QR codes in your marketing? If so, please share how and the type of results you’ve seen.

The SEO Tactics Chart: Tips to Dominate Your Search Category

November 15, 2011

By Ryan Woolley, Vice President of Client Services, Response Mine Interactive

Over the past 10 years, RMI has delivered hundreds of millions of dollars in organic revenue for our clients. The world of organic search has evolved dramatically, as has the search engines results page (SERP), and therefore also the tactics required to achieve success in this space.

Even with the dynamic evolution of the channel, we’ve found principles that work time and time again throughout the years. These include to:

  • Apply a direct response methodology to organic search
  • Go granular in keyword-level data analysis
  • Strive for quality, not quantity

Companies that are driving large-scale, sustainable revenue and customer acquisition through the organic channel have embraced these main beliefs. In many cases, they treat and measure search engine optimizations much like a paid search program – with discipline around testing, experimentation, and granular analysis.

RMI’s SEO Tactics Chart unveils many of the tactics that we’ve executed as a result of this way of thinking. Here are some of the key attributes addressed in the chart to help you dominate your search category.

Keywords: Conversion Intent
It’s critical to consider the mindset of consumers in their decision-making process and the impact this has on conversion. In the keyword realm, we often speak of this as Head, Torso, and Long Tail keywords. Think of it as a spectrum, where Head terms commonly drive the volume and brand exposure, but not necessarily the end goal of conversion as they are more research-driven. Moving through Torso to Long Tail and SKU-level terms you’ll find the volume begins to thin out as the conversion rate increases. Building revenue opportunity models that factor volume and conversion will usually lead you to a focused set of keywords that include a healthy mix of each keyword type in your program.

On-Site: Content & Quality
Simply adding content can be a challenge in many cases, particularly when dealing with e-commerce sites in the retail space. Sometimes it’s a platform restriction, other times there are concerns that adding content will distract the user or push product down the page thus negatively impacting conversion. All are relevant concerns. What’s worked best for us is placing a small amount of keyword-focused content above the product table near the top of the page while adding several short paragraphs of content below the product table near the bottom of the page. This usually satisfies the business, the end user, and the engine.

One of the cornerstones to successful on-site optimization is authentic, quality content. By authentic we are referring to the uniqueness of the content. Again using retail as the example, it’s common to find businesses selling tens of thousands of SKUs, each with a dedicated page on their site. The idea of adding product-level content for each page can be a time-consuming proposition.

A common quick fix that businesses will apply is to repurpose or “borrow” content about that product from the manufacture website. Most often this content adds little to no value to the retailer’s organic efforts, as it was not the original publisher of the content. Unique content that is first published on your own site is what you should be striving for when evaluating the value that your content will bring from an organic perspective.

Off-site: Diversification
You absolutely must have a data-driven keyword strategy in place to drive results from your link building efforts. Identify keywords that have the highest likelihood of driving incremental online conversions and set those terms as your target.

These keywords become the genesis of your anchor text. But, don’t fall into the trap that many SEOs do. Here’s a common problem:  “I want to rank for “men’s jackets” and in doing so I’ve determined that all of the links that I will attain will be targeted with “men’s jackets” as the anchor text.” This is a mistake. While you certainly need some focus on the primary keywords within your anchor text, it’s equally as important to work with derivatives of that keyword.

Moderation and diversification are important principles in anchor text selection. Do your homework and identify a set of valuable derivates such as “men’s winter jackets” and “cheap men’s jackets.” Diversifying the keywords within your link profile will help it in appearing natural.

An anchor text usage rule of thumb that we’ve seen success with looks something like this:

  • 50% containing the exact match keyword
  • 30% to 40% containing keyword derivatives
  • 10% to 20% containing brand terms/URL

Reporting & Analytics
Conversions, then Traffic, then Rankings. This is the mindset used when we approach any SEO program. Focusing attention on keywords that have the highest likelihood to convert to a sale or lead is not always synonymous with high traffic terms. Spend the time in your analytics package to understand the difference and apply more pressure to keywords that will increase revenue/leads.

And don’t forget about tracking the activity that is occurring in your call center as a result of your organic efforts. In our experience, more than 90% of the businesses we’ve encountered have overlooked this – even in instances where they are tracking call center conversions from paid search. The technology is there (we have had success with ClickPath,) and if your business model is reliant on call center activity for conversions, the information available through this tracking typically opens up new opportunities and gives you a much more accurate view on the entirety of the results you are driving.

About the Author

Ryan Woolley is vice president of client services for RMI, an award-winning digital agency that helps companies acquire more customers using lead generation programs. For more than a decade, RMI has generated billions of dollars in revenue for world-renowned brands in the b2b, healthcare, travel, and home services channels using its strategic customer acquisition approaches.

DMA Atlanta Luncheon | Thursday November 17th | Leveraging Multi-Channel Marketing

November 15, 2011

Joe Lobosco | Sr. Director, Business Development
Vertis Communications

Thursday, November 17th, 2011 | 11:30-1:30 p.m

Where: Maggiano’s – Perimeter  |4400 Ashford Dunwoody Rd | Atlanta, GA 30346 | Phone: 770-804-3313

Description:

Are you searching for a format that gives substantial substance on how to navigate multi-channel marketing and drive successful results for your prospects and customers as well as profits to your bottom line?

Please join Joe LoBosco and Vertis Communications at the DMA luncheon, where Joe will share his unique perspective on how to succeed in multi-channel marketing.

Joe will reveal the “formula” behind how Vertis worked with top corporations to drive successful multi-channel campaigns such as:

  • Harley Davidson
  • Ford Motor
  • MGM Grand
  • Lowes
  • Learning Care Group
  • Sir Speedy
  • Best Buy

Please invite a prospect or client company. Register early for best prices.

Registration

More Info