When in doubt, Google This

GoogleThis

Looking to understand more about social media marketing, search engine optimization, blogging, digital public relations, Google and more? We’ve got the inside scoop on Google This, the latest release from Derek Mehraban (our boss!) and Richard T. Cole. The book highlights all you need to know to create a successful digital marketing campaign on all social media platforms. Regardless of your job title, this book supplies the information and needed resources to help you reach your goals in the world of digital media.

Google This gives readers the information they need to navigate and create profitable results on the unclear paths of social media. Topics covered range from creating new content for blogs that already exist, or starting and developing your own to building communities of interest with consumers from other audiences. Google This is written in easy-to-understand language to help master the main social media sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.

Google This helps you understand how social media is continuously changing and affecting marketing for your business–proven by the explained Google and Yahoo! search rankings in Google Analytics. Bottom line, Google This is a great resource for anyone looking to expand their efforts in digital marketing with positive and profitable results. We’ve got a copy on our desks for any quick digital marketing questions, get yours now too!

For great resources from the book, check out the Google This blog here: http://googlethisbook.tumblr.com/

A Refresher Course: Digital Marketing Basics

strategyAfter reading an article by Mashable “Does Your Business Need a Full-Time Social Media Team?”, I was once again reminded how complex and time consuming creating a digital marketing strategy can be. After all, there is an entire industry dedicated to the social media marketing of businesses and corporations. And as part of a digital marketing team, I thought it would be a good idea to reiterate the basics of developing a successful digital marketing strategy.

Digital marketing strategies rely on incorporating traditional public relations principles with current social media trends. But to be successful, it’s important to find the right strategy. Specifically, this means researching your audience, choosing the appropriate social media, and creating measurable goals all in an effort to engage and build with your audience.

So when developing a digital marketing strategy for a class project, internship, or at a job, here are some key things to keep in mind:

Know your audience.

It’s simple, the more you know about your target audience, the better your strategy will be. However, knowing your audience means you must do a significant amount of research to fully understand your audience and their expectations.

Identify where your audience goes on the web for information, paying special attention to “pain points.” Pain points are problems or weaknesses apparent in the current marketing strategy. These pain points aren’t currently adequately (or perhaps not even at all) the audience’s needs and expectations. Think like your audience. Pain points can help you identify opportunities that allow you to better connect with the audience. Understanding how your audience currently interacts with the product or company will help you market to them more effectively.

Choose social media platforms based on audience and audience research.

It’s easy to become over zealous when adding social media into your strategy. At first, you might feel pressured to incorporate Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Google+, Vine, Tumblr, LinkedIn, and every other social media platforms into your strategy, but take a step back and really look at your research and audience. Ask yourself, “Is my audience active on Twitter?” “Do they really use Instagram?” Questions like these will help you focus on where your audience is actively participating on the web. From there, you can peruse and take notes on the types of content your audience most frequently interacts with.

The key to successfully using social media as part of your strategy is not to stretch your brand. It is always better to be sincerely engaged with your audience on one or two platforms than just to have a presence on seven or eight platforms. Successful social media management requires a fresh supply of relevant content and daily maintenance. Actively participate in your chosen social media outlets and don’t worry about the rest.

Set realistic, measurable goals.

It’s easy to become overly ambitious when setting your marketing strategy goals. It is extremely important to set goals that are attainable and measurable. So, how do you do that?

Firstly, understand that marketing strategies take time. Strategies do not work overnight, and receiving substantial feedback on your strategy often takes weeks and months. Develop an overarching goal to your strategy, but make sure to create smaller goals throughout your timeline in order to track your progress. Smaller, more refined goals will allow you to make adjustments to your strategy along the way.

Secondly, a marketing goal should be measurable. Measuring your strategy means being able to compare metrics according to a set timeframe.

Not an analyst? Don’t worry. There are hundreds of free online analytics tools available on your computer, tablet, or smartphone. Facebook even has their own analytics tool, called Facebook Insights, and they’re getting better all the time. Facebook’s Insight tool now helps you benchmark your marketing strategy, see when your audience is online, and better visualize Page Likes growth through new graphs.

Like every company, every strategy is different. At the most basic level, digital marketing strategies strive for research-rich audience data, relevant and appropriate use of social media, and measurable and attainable goals to be successful.

Hope this is a helpful resource for your digital marketing endeavors!

Learning from Dove’s Viral Marketing Campaign

A few months ago, Dove launched a hugely successful campaign called “Real Beauty”. The first installment of their viral video series was called “Sketches” which featured women describing their appearances to a police sketch artist. The sketches turned out to be much less attractive than how other people described them to be.

dove

Source: YouTube screenshot

This instantly struck a chord with viewers and the viral video spread fast with more than 114 million views on the Dove YouTube channel. Even with the popularity of the video, responses were mixed. Some found the ads to be empowering, while others claimed that they were playing into beauty stereotypes. However, comments about the video on Dove’s Facebook page suggested that most found the video to be feel-good and inspirational.

Dove’s campaign can be a teaching lesson for digital marketing firms. Companies looking to release some viral marketing genius need to be in touch with who they are trying to sell to. Just as Dove has tried to stay in touch with the attitudes and frustrations that women have the beauty industry in general, companies need to become savvier with the interests of their customers to a more personal level. People are more willing to support companies that go above and beyond simply the money-making motivations, but also make the effort to recognize the problems that their customers have.

Recently Dove released a new video to add to its campaign. “Camera Shy” is a cheery, playful video, but also brings in a more serious question, asking viewers, “When did you stop thinking you were beautiful?” Do you this video have what it takes to achieve the same success as its predecessor?

Branding in Six Seconds or Less

Recently Twitter introduced us to Vine — a mobile app that allows users to share simple and fun looping videos with a maximum length of six seconds (think of it as the Instagram of short videos). It didn’t take long for brands to become part of the conversation, but will these GIF-like videos stick around or be a quickly fading social media trend.

Photo By Esther Vargas

Photo By Esther Vargas

Many brands have been active on Twitter and have developed successful strategies for effectiveness. Similarly, a strategy must be made for Vine, determining the personality and brand voice to be used. Here are just a few examples of how digital advertisers have been successful on Vine:

Teasers
When promoting a movie or a new product launch, the six second time limit works to its advantage, only capturing a few brief moments. Rolling Stones Magazine does an awesome job engaging with their audience to guess who is featured on the cover. For its April issue, Rolling Stones teased the cover, with cigarettes covering the mystery celebrity. 

Have no idea who it could be? Don’t worry, Rolling Stones released a Vine the following day uncovering none other than Mad Men’s Jon Hamm. 

Highlight Product
Vine’s short time limit means it’s necessary to show the product or brand throughout the video. This short clip from Malibu Rum shows you don’t have to make an elaborate video to tell a story and get the point across.

Special Offers
Flashing a quick coupon in a Vine is a great way to gain attention for the account and increase views, but it also promotes the brand. Peanut Butter & Co. uses this particular Vine to showcase their coupons. The clip stays consistent with the brand personality and is relevant to consumers.

Informing
Lowe’s videos offer useful home improvement tips, in only six seconds! Their current tagline of “Never Stop Improving” is supported with these playful clips that show you how to make tiny adjustments to make your projects that much easier. #LowesFixInSix is a great example of using social media for branding.

Contests/User Generated Content
Brands can gain a lot of positive attention from user generated content, and Vine is a perfect outlet for this. The Cavendish Hotel held the first vine-only contest to see who could make the most romantic #ValentineVine. The winner won a free night in the hotel, complete with drinks and dinner.

 

Brands have to be cautious to not fall into the trap of trying to include too much content in a brief six seconds. Vine is still a relatively new marketing tactic for brands, but there is potential if done correctly. We will have to wait and see if Twitter’s Vine will bear fruit for digital advertisers.
 

— By Rachel Keeton

Use Pinterest to Market for Your Company

Pinterest is a site that has everything from grandma’s old-fashioned recipes to an array of wedding gowns. People use the Pinterest application to search for products and processes that they wish to use in the future to enhance their life. Companies should use Pinterest to market their products because consumers are already searching for products.

Photo via Pinterest

Companies such as Anthropologie, Etsy, Home Depot, and Target are Pinterest users. They post their product prices and step-by-step ways to use them. These companies chat, connect, visualize, and share their products daily to over 25 million users, many of whom are young females who are well-educated, have disposable income, and are in constant search for new products.

Consumers are coming to the company using Pinterest instead of the typical marketing route where companies seek out consumers. If a company has a product that Pinterest users are looking for they will “repin” (save) the product onto their categorized board, and now all of their followers will see the product too. Products can gain a huge reach when repinned. Companies can even continue to re-pin their original post so frequency can increase.

Pins are very organized. Viewers just click on the pin to increase the image size. If they believe the product is something they would want to use, they can click on the image again which can lead right to the company’s website. This can make it easy for consumers to click, learn, and order products instantly. Even if consumers don’t want to make a purchase at that moment, they can save your product on their boards and go back to them later.

Photo credit: molliesu!

Consumers today thrive on convenience. The ability to learn about and buy something without leaving their home is ideal, and Pinterest provides this conveniency. Consumers are always on the go, so with the Pinterest mobile app they can search for the products they need while they are already out, and stop by the establishment to buy it.

Companies can also use Pinterest to discover who their target audience actually is. By following people who re-pin their products, companies can view that users Pinterest boards. Deeper views onto boards allow companies to see what goals and needs their target audience has and what products they are seeking to accomplish this. Companies also have the ability to interact with their consumers. They can pin information about contests, sweepstakes, giveaways, coupons, sales information, and answer questions so they can be more connected with their target audiences.

Have a product or idea you want to share? Use Pinterest to market your product. This easy to use, easy to share, convenient website can help a company gain the reach and frequency to their target audience easily and efficiently.