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Google AdWords: Introducing Enhanced Campaigns

admin » 11 February 2013 » In Google, Internet, Marketing, Tech News, Youtube » No Comments

Google AdWords: Introducing Enhanced Campaigns

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Facebook Doubles Release Speed, Will Roll New Code Twice A Day

admin » 03 August 2012 » In Internet, Marketing, Social Media » No Comments

Facebook Doubles Release Speed

Facebook announced in a blog post today that they are doubling the site’s release speed, rolling Facebook onto new code twice per day.

“Last week, in conjunction with the opening of our engineering office in London, we decided to double the release speed of facebook.com and indeed “ship often,” release engineering manager Chuck Rossi writes.

First, there will be a push driven by Facebook’s New York office, followed by the social network’s regular daily push from the California team. Rossi says the developers are producing six times the amount of code per week as Facebook was in 2008, when he joined.

“It’s exciting and I think it crushes what anyone else of our size and impact is doing. Ship early and ship twice as often,” Rossi writes to close the post, firing a shot at Facebook’s competitors.

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10 Small Business Social Media Marketing Tips

admin » 11 April 2012 » In Google, Marketing, Search Engines, Social Media » No Comments

10 Small Business Social Media Marketing Tips

Capacity – especially to plan and execute effective marketing strategies – is a big challenge for every small business. In this post, I’ll offer 10 suggestions for how small businesses can supercharge their marketing efforts by leveraging social media. For each suggestion, I will discuss a basic strategy – for those who simply want to get their toes wet, as well as an advanced strategy – for those who want to spend a bit more time and go a bit deeper in their social media marketing efforts. These tips are based on my experience leveraging social media marketing for my company, crowdSPRING.

I suggest you begin by outlining clear goals for your social media marketing efforts and figuring out how you’ll measure success. Once you’ve outlined your goals, let’s look at 10 great ways you can begin to leverage social media for your marketing efforts.

1. Facebook

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Facebook offers exceptional, low cost marketing opportunities for small business. Facebook now has over 300 million users, and while that seems like an outrageous number for small businesses to be targeting, Facebook offers a very powerful platform on which to build a presence. If you’re not already active on Facebook; you should get started right away.

Basic Strategy: If you haven’t signed up for Facebook yet, you absolutely should as soon as possible. Once you’ve signed up, you should also consider securing your company’s username. Be aware, however, that if you reserve your company name for your personal account, you won’t be able to use it for your Business Fan Page (more on those in the Advanced Strategy), so you may want to create a Page before registering your company’s name. Fan Pages have special rules regarding usernames, which you can read here.

You should do one other thing: search for your competitors and evaluate their Facebook presence. What types of Pages have they built? How many fans or “friends” do they have? Spend 15 minutes (per competitor) looking at their posts, photos and/or videos to understand how they’re using Facebook.

Advanced Strategy: You may already have a personal Facebook account, but how do you extend that presence for your business? You have several options. You can register a Business Account – which is designed for a very simple presence on Facebook. There are many limitations on such accounts (read the FAQ here), however, so you’ll most likely prefer to have a Business Fan Page. A Business Fan Page lets you create a page where customers or fans of your business can register as a “fan” — expanding the presence of your business (because your updates will also flow to their pages). You might also want to consider running hyper-local ads on Facebook.

2. Twitter

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Twitter has grown tremendously over the past year. For some small businesses, it offers an incredible marketing platform. BusinessWeek’s recent profile of 20 ways businesses use Twitter might give you some ideas about how you can leverage Twitter for your business.

Basic Strategy: If you haven’t signed up on Twitter yet, you should sign up today and reserve an account in the name of your business. While you might ultimately tweet in your own name, you’ll want to have the option to tweet from a business account. More importantly, you don’t want your competitors to register your business name. Twitter has put together a simple guide to help you understand what Twitter can do for business. You can also check out Mashable’s Twitter Guide.

Next, you should spend 15-30 minutes on Twitter’s homepage, doing basic searches to become familiar with the type of content available on the service. For example, if you are operating a small gift basket business, do some searches for various terms and phrases such as “gift basket,” “gifts,” “gift basket business,” etc. You should also search for the names of your competitors to see whether they’re on Twitter and if they are, how they’re using it. And don’t forget to search for your small business name – your customers may already be talking about you! Once you become comfortable with the content that’s already available and how your competitors are using Twitter, you can begin thinking about a strategy for how you’ll leverage Twitter for your business.

Advanced Strategy: To truly leverage Twitter, you’ll want to learn and use a few more advanced tools. This includes desktop and mobile Twitter clients like TweetDeck, Seesmic, and Tweetie. Desktop clients give you more flexibility and more control over your Twitter strategy than you’ll have on the Twitter website. Among other things, you’ll be able to pre-define searches (so that you can monitor certain keywords, including your business name) and group people you follow so that you can minimize the noise and focus on the real content. You might also consider using a web tool like Twitterfall, which will allow you to define (and color-code) various custom searches that you can review from time to time, and also to follow trending topics. For example, I use Twitterfall to identify helpful graphic design and industrial design resources to share with the crowdSPRING community.

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Google’s Schmidt: The Future Is Mobile, Local, Social

admin » 12 March 2012 » In Google, Internet, Marketing, Tech News » No Comments

Google’s Schmidt: The Future Is Mobile, Local, Social

Google Executive Chairman and former CEO Eric Schmidt said technology is at a crossroads and the next game changing shift will comprise mobile, local and social technologies and will create an environment that unfolds in true real-time.

In an interview keynote session at Dreamforce 2011, Salesforce Chairman and CEO Marc Benioff asked Schmidt to detail the industry’s past, where it is now, and where it will be in the future, and according to Schmidt, one thing is clear: Standing still just won’t cut it.

Schmidt recalled his days at Sun when nearly two decades ago young innovators were developing systems that would now be called cloud computing.

“We were right 15 years ago, we just had to wait for the technology to catch up,” he said, reflecting back on the network computer of yesteryear.

Now light, less complicated systems are creating environments where enterprises no longer have to spend millions of dollars and wait several years of development cycles for innovation to take hold. New cloud and mobile technologies, he said, have “wiped out” that idea.

Schmidt said technology evolved in four phases. First was basic connectivity, followed by connection and publishing. Later, the application phase took hold, and now the industry is entrenched in the social and personal phase of technology.

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Welcome To The Future Of Media – “Distribution” is bigger…

admin » 04 January 2012 » In Internet, Marketing, Social Media, Tech News, Uncategorized » No Comments

Welcome To The Future Of Media – “Distribution” is bigger…

Welcome To The Future Of Media - Distribution is bigger...

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Where’s Google making its money?

admin » 19 July 2011 » In Google, Internet, Marketing, Search Engines » No Comments

Where’s Google making its money?

Where Does Google Make Its Money? [ infographic ]

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Google Panda Has Changed SEO Forever

admin » 05 July 2011 » In Google, Internet, Marketing, Search Engines » No Comments

Google-Panda

Google Panda Has Changed SEO Forever

SEO (search engine optimization) has been one of the most important buzz words for web publishers over the past 10 years. Getting ranked in Google means free traffic for web publishers, so improving and optimizing a given website for the search engines was essential. However, Google Panda is here to stay, and it has forever changed the rules of SEO.

For the past 10+ years, Google utilized its PageRank methodology to rank websites. If you had a website about basketball, and you got a link from ESPN.com – Google would notice that your site is a quality site about basketball. It was similar to a voting system, when a relevant and high authority site linked to you, it would count as a vote. And the more votes your website received, the better your website would rank. Of course relevance played a roll, as Google gave more value to sites linking to you which were about a similar topic as yours. In addition, authority mattered, so one link from ESPN.com may hold more value than 5 links from sports related blogs which weren’t as popular.

Two other major factors that Google considered were unique content and the “Title Tag”. Google wanted content that was unique and not displayed on other web pages across the internet. If duplicate content was found, Google would determine which site was the original author of the content, and it would penalize the other sites which had scraped the content.

Google also factored the “Title Tag” as it was a way for web publishers to tell users and Google what the given webpage was about. This helped Google to organize and rank web pages for given keyword searches.

This methodology for ranking web pages worked, and Google utilized the above methods in addition to several others to display highly relevant search results. For years, Google results were of a higher quality than all other search engines, which is why Google continued to command over a 65% market share. However, over the past few years, other search engines such as Bing caught up, and Google wasn’t so special anymore. At the same time, web publishers became savvy and they figured out ways to sneak into Google ahead of more relevant results. For example, earlier this year, JC Penny was accused of purchasing links on websites across the web to make Google think that these links were natural and thus a vote for JC Penny’s websites.

As more and more users complained about search results, Google realized it needed to shift, and in came Google Panda. Google Panda is an entirely new way for Google to evaluate websites. And while Google will still factor in many of the same criteria it has in the past, Google Panda adds an entirely new element to Google’s ranking methodology.

Panda wants better quality websites in its results. It is less concerned with signals that other websites give it and more concerned with what the actual users think about the website. Think of Google Panda as an automated way for Google to have users power its search results. The brilliant part is that it is user powered without the user having to do anything different. Panda is not only genius, but it makes sense as it should prevent lower quality sites from tricking Google into thinking they are of higher quality.

Panda factors in a wide variety of user signals to help Google determine the quality of a website. It looks at “Time on Site” as a way to determine how quality of an experience the user is having on a given site. It looks at the bounce rate, which is a measure of the percentage of people that leave a site without doing anything. It looks at social signals such as shares and +1’s as a way to see if people are recommending a given webpage. It looks at page views per visit as a way to see how people are navigating through a given site.

Google also looks at Branded Search traffic which is the amount of people that are specifically looking for a given site. So, if your basketball site is called “Fun Basketball Dude” – and Google notices that an increasing amount of people are searching for “Fun Basketball Dude” as a way to get to your website, that is a way for Google to recognize that your site is enjoyed by users.

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Getting Qualified Twitter Followers

admin » 25 April 2011 » In Internet, Marketing, Social Media » No Comments

Getting Qualified Twitter Followers

When it comes to Twitter, your main concern for you is how to increase the number of followers over what you have already. However, it isn’t enough to merely acquire followers. You need to acquire high-quality followers.

Quality over quantity

Before you start on your strategic social media campaign, you need to identify which specific followers you want to follow you on Twitter. The higher the quality of your followers, the higher the quality of your social media relationships will be. If your content is excellent but the wrong people are following you and reading it, it won’t go very far.

Make sure that you have a complete profile

An extremely easy way to establish credibility is to complete your Twitter profile. The credibility plays into it because your completed profile makes others understand that you know what you are talking about. Remember to include a current photograph of yourself as part of your profile. The photo is very important because it gives you a human quality—a quality that other people can relate to. It is critical for you to complete your entire profile. Another very important part of your profile is your biography. People not only need to understand who you are and what you are doing now, they also need to understand where you come from and how you got to where you are now.

Introduce yourself

An easy and effective way to establish connections on Twitter is to simply introduce yourself to people with whom you wish to connect. Try to interact with them as much as you can and you will see that before you know it, your relationship will be solid.

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Web Words That Lure the Readers

admin » 12 April 2011 » In Google, Marketing, Search Engines, Social Media » No Comments

Web Words That Lure the Readers

The Huffington Post has hired veteran journalists to beef up its news coverage. But a significant chunk of its readers come instead for articles like one published this week: “Chelsy Davy & Prince Harry: So Happy Together?”

The two-sentence article was just a vehicle for a slide show of photographs of the couple and included no actual news. But “Chelsy Davy” was one of the top searches on Google that day, and soon after the article was published it became one of the first links that popped up in Google’s search results.

It was an example of an art and science at which The Huffington Post excels: search engine optimization, or S.E.O. The term covers a wide range of behind-the-scenes tactics for getting search engine users to visit a Web site, like choosing story topics based on popular searches.

Because Google is many Internet users’ front door to the Web, S.E.O. has become an obsession for many Web publishers, and successful ones use the strategies to varying degrees. But as newspapers, magazines, blogs and online-only news sites increasingly compete for readers, they are making it more of a priority than ever and adopting new techniques, like trying to maximize pass-alongs on social networks.

The Huffington Post’s skill at using these tactics to increase readership and revenue was one of the ways it made itself worth $315 million to AOL, which acquired it this week. And Demand Media, which runs sites like eHow and Answerbag.com and values search engine optimization perhaps more than any other publisher, raised $151 million in a public offering in January.

Models like these could pave the route toward profitable journalism in a postprint world, some analysts say — or, others worry, drive online media to publish low-quality articles that are written to appeal to search engines instead of people.

S.E.O. is “absolutely essential,” said Rich Skrenta, chief executive of the search engine Blekko. Still, he said, it can turn into a “heroin drip” for publishers: “They had this really good content at the beginning, but they realize the more S.E.O. they do, the more money they make, and the pressure really pushes down the quality on their sites.”

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5 Innovative Mobile Marketing Campaigns

admin » 08 March 2011 » In Google, Marketing, Tech News » No Comments

5 Innovative Mobile Marketing Campaigns

Mobile is an area of intense fascination for marketers and advertisers, partially because it’s so confounding.

Ideally, mobile marketing can be even more effective than search. Its targeted consumers are not sitting on their couches thinking about buying something — they’re out in the real world and are open to suggestions about where to go next. A well-timed coupon or even just a reminder that a store is nearby can create a sales opportunity out of thin air.

That said, there are huge barriers to getting an effective mobile campaign underway, including privacy issues, wireless carriers’ individual policies and the still low rate of smartphone adoption in the U.S.

Nevertheless, here are five mobile campaigns that worked within those limitations and showed the industry the potential of the mobile medium.

1. PowerMat on MyTown

If you haven’t heard of Booyah’s MyTown, imagine if Second Life was overlaid on the real world. Considered the world’s largest location-based game with 3.3 million players, MyTown offers virtual rewards when players check in to real locations. In early 2010, the game’s zealous user base caught the attention of PowerMat, a consumer electronics firm known for its wireless charging devices. In May 2010, the brand launched the first-ever sweepstakes on MyTown, offering virtual items when players checked in to a PowerMat retailer like Best Buy, Target or Bed, Bath and Beyond.

Results: PowerMat virtual goods garnered nearly 15 million interactions during the program. The clickthrough rate to PowerMat’s sweepstakes page was 1.8%, compared to an industry average of 0.1%. Players submitted more than 21,000 entries.

2. InterContinental Hotels Group Boosts Mobile Search

What’s the best mobile marketing tool: a mobile website or an app? For InterContinental Hotels Group, it’s no contest: a mobile website is much more valuable, according to Interactive Marketing Manager Marco De Rosa. Why? In a case study published by Google about IHG’s European mobile program, De Rosa points out that websites are more flexible across different platforms. Of course, apps have their place, and IHG launched one — called the Priority Club Reward app — which lets customers book hotel rooms, check their points balance and view reservations. IHG got the word out about its expanded mobile offerings via old school media, including print and on-premise signage.

Results: The push resulted in a 91% year-over-year increase in mobile search revenues, and traffic to the company’s mobile site jumps about 20% every month. In the U.S., the mobile program added another feature: Click-to-Call from Google AdWords. Click-to-Call now accounts for 40% of IHG’s mobile web revenue globally, according to De Rosa.

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