Apple Music: Strategy, BlackTwitter & Knowing Your Audience
We are still evolving in the digital space and many companies with marketing teams are still getting acclimated to the evolution of marketing. Some are doing well and some, well, not so much.
Apple has always been a very cutting edge company, so it’s not surprising that they are “going hard” in the marketing area as well with the promotion of Apple Music. They are, quite frankly “killing it” and all marketing teams, successful and otherwise should be paying attention to the moves they are making. I like the way they move. [Insert me singing, I like the way you move by Outkast] Sorry, I got side tracked.
Apple released an amazing commercial during the Emmy Awards that almost broke Twitter and it was such a strategically amazing marketing move, that it almost made me cry. Not really, but that did sound good, didn’t it? In all seriousness, since I’ve witnessed lots of failed attempts a clever marketing, the digital marketer in me was super excited to see Apple knock this one out of the ball park, once again. I just love that this promotion immediately followed the equally successful viral Apple/Beats campaign, Straight Outta Compton movie release, which was also quite brilliant.
Apple created a commercial featuring the top three most recognizable faces in music and TV to promote Apple Music. The commercial was also directed by one of the most talented, up and coming directors in the industry, Ava DuVernay.
The Apple Music commercial, features Mary J. Blige who is a huge R&B artist, Taraji P Henson and Kerry Washington, both of whom are leads in the two most popular shows on network TV. Coincidentally or probably not so much, Kerry and Taraji’s shows Scandal and Empire are both due to start a new season within a few days, so fans are clamoring to get at them. These shows are so very popular within the “Black Twitter” demographic, and it seems as if that was the target demographic for this campaign as well. If that were the case, as I suspect, that makes the release of the commercial that much more strategically brilliant.
The campaign strategy, the star selection, brilliant promotion and excellent timing is an indication that Apple is 100% on their game. They strategically and methodically pushed this commercial featuring some of the most recognizable faces, directed by one of the most amazing directors geared toward their target audience at the perfect time. On a side note, I would be very interested in seeing the ROI on that campaign. This is especially the case after reading how many people on Twitter planned to sign up for Apple Music because, the commercial “Gave Them Life “ or “It Was Everything.”
The Apple Music commercial is a piece of marketing magic, created by a team that is 100% on their A Game. I expect nothing less from Apple. Watch and learn marketing agencies, watch and learn.
As usual, I am available by way of Facebook, Twitter or Google+. I welcome all comments good, bad, ugly or indifferent.
Anyone that is into music would have to be living under a rock NOT to be familiar with NWA. If anyone needs reminding, this group really did change the rap game and gave birth to legends like Ice Cube and Dr. Dre who have gone on to do amazing things.
I will admit coming from the East Coast, I was not overly fond of NWA when they hit the rap scene way back in the day. However, I always realized that they changed the rap game and really changed the entire music industry.
As a lover of music, I try to provide music education to my son by giving him a well rounded list of artists that left a profound impact on the music industry. Also, I wouldn’t want him to get on Twitter and say ” Who’s that Paul McCartney dude?” So, since I felt that I needed to educate him about some of the folks that were game changers in the music industry, NWA was one of the groups that I taught him about. When there was word that there was going to be a movie called Straight Out Of Compton, depicting the story of NWA, this was immediately on my list of movies that I HAD to see. I don’t know that I will take my son to see it, maybe after I view it first to see if it’s age appropriate.
There has been a LOT of buzz about this movie and the excitement about it’s release has been brewing for a while, but tonight that buzz hit social media like a bomb. With so many marketers TRYING and failing at social, the marketing team working on the promotion of Straight Out Of Compton got it right.
This marketing team created an online app, to allow people the ability to customize a picture of their choice with the “Straight Outta [they add what they want]” slogan. What this essentially created was an amazing buzz about this movie and FREE social media exposure for the release of the Straight Out Compton movie. The buzz was created when people started sharing their customized photos on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. The #StraightOutta was trending so much on Instagram that it also started trending on Twitter. It was by far one of the most brilliant uses of social media that i’ve ever seen.
I always love seeing creative uses of social media in the music industry. This is especially the case since a lot of my clients ARE in the music industry. I also love seeing other media channels like tv and the movie industry, rock this space by implementing unique and creative campaigns that integrate social media NOT just throw it in as an after thought.
As usual, I welcome any comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent. Feel free to chase me down on Facebook, Twitter or G+
Digital Marketing is still relatively new in comparison to traditional marketing. Although i’ve seen some boasting that they’ve been in the Digital Marketing industry for 30 years. I’ve seen this so many times that I have no response anymore and it’s really neither, here nor there at this point.
At this stage in the digital marketing game, we have been dabbling in this space long enough as marketers that we should “get it”, yet it seems that it’s not the case. There was a study by Adobe that pretty much said as marketers there are a high percentage of folks that are failing. Not only do these folks realize they are failing but they do not even have confidence in their skills in the space, enough to attempt to change. This is a problem!
We need competent marketers that are on their A Game, because the demand in this space is increasing. We are not going backward to that traditional marketing comfort zone that some want to wallow in. If any thing marketing is accelerating quicker toward total technology dominance. The merge between technology and marketing is almost fully realized. So much so, that markers are now considered marketing technologists, not just marketers. The skill set that is required to be successful in the marketing space is probably 90% technical with very little focus on traditional marketing strategies.
We have reached a point that we should recognize the fundamental differences between adjusting traditional marketing strategies to the digital space and embracing digital marketing strategy. This is a hardcore fail because these channels appeal to different demographic audiences.
Digital channels allow us so many benefits that were not available with traditional marketing channels. A huge and amazing opportunity that digital offers those that take advantage of it, is analytics, which it the backbone behind successful digital marketing strategies. Analytics allows us to utilize data to determine ROI of campaigns. This is huge for us as marketers and for the clients that we work with.
As a person that is not overly fond of numbers, I have a love of analytics because these numbers provide a roadmap to where we’ve been digitally and map a path to our next digital destination. However, we must be willing to pay attention in order to see this path. We must first recognize the importance of digital and the important role of analytics. As a marketer, if you miss this you are lost.
There are so many marketers that are NOT paying attention. They don’t realize that digital marketing is NOT a retrofitted version of their old school marketing. It is much better and much, much more but only if we are willing to embrace the change. As marketers in this space we must pay attention to the industry, innovations and most importantly our customers. These are areas in which we are failing as an industry. There are some exceptions of course.
Four Reasons Why You Are Failing At Digital Marketing:
1. It’s not about you, really it’s NOT. I don’t know how many times i’ve heard, “Well, I like this.” or “I like that or I don’t like that.” So what, who cares. It’s not really about you. The content you share is really NOT about you, just as the content that I share is NOT about me. It’s 100% about your audience.
I always share content that I think friends and followers would find useful, thought provoking or will solve a problem for them. It’s never been about my likes or dislikes. A great example of this is one of my Pinterest boards about bacon. This is by far one of my most popular boards and it’s so funny, because I haven’t had a slice of traditional bacon in over 30 years. I don’t even remember what it tastes like. However, it seems that people that follow me on Pinterest love bacon. So, if that’s what they love, that’s what I supply. I realize the bacon board was popular because I was paying attention and analyzing the data.
A lot of people that do not have a digital background or have not learned enough in this industry to venture away from their outdated traditional marketing background, still don’t pay attention. They are hanging on to antiquated techniques like Linus of Charlie Brown with the dirty blanket. There’s a new set of rules and these rules have to be embraced by learning what digital is all about not taking stabs at failing attempts to retrofit traditional marketing into digital strategy. This is not a criticism at all, more of an observation.
Old school, traditional marketing was more about the company that was pushing the message. It was more of a “Me Me Me” channel. Digital is the antithesis of that, because digital is about the CUSTOMER, CLIENT and their user experience. It’s NOT about YOU, as the marketer, so pay attention.
2. Pay attention to the customers, clients and data because they don’t lie. There are so many people that are caught up in the frenzy of doing the “digital thing” that they are just posting, pushing content and doing all of the things that they think they are supposed to be doing but in the process they are not paying attention to the customer or client.
In the frenzy to be “on the ball,” and appear to know it all a lot of marketers think they are winning the fight but they are losing the war. A huge part of digital and social is really paying attention to your customers. What kind of content are the customers interacting with, why are they interacting with that content and how should you interpret that. What is your take away? How can you use that interaction to better THEIR customer experience?
Marketers need to pay attention and create a strategy based on the wants and needs of their customers and clients, but first as a marketer you must pay attention. It’s just that simple. Are you paying attention?
3. Analyze the data because it doesn’t lie and will give you a roadmap to creating a great strategy that will be 100% about your customers and clients. After all that’s what this is about, the entire digital marketing thing is about creating an avenue for your customers, so they can engage with you and your brand with the ultimate goal of increasing brand exposure and potentially sales. However, if you as a marketer lack the fundamentals needed to put your wants aside and if you don’t pay attention all of this is rather pointless.
We have to take the ME out of our digital strategy and a part of that is putting our wants aside, focusing on the customer and utilizing insights gained from the customer to continue to provide what they desire. This is win win for the marketer, client and/or customer.
The data is a roadmap and it will always lead you in the right direction but you must analyze it and plan accordingly.
4. Plan based on data, that is huge because it allows you to utilize analytics and insights to drive your marketing strategy. If you are unfamiliar with insights and analytics, I’d suggest you dive in to that area because it will make your digital marketing strategy so much easier.
Suppose you have a goal to hit a certain target audience for your clients, how are you to know you are successful if you are not analyzing the data around your marketing campaigns? If you are not looking at the data your digital strategy is sort of like, “let me just throw some crap on the wall and see what sticks.” In opting not to analyze the insights and analytics of your social media, websites and campaigns, you leave a lot to chance and that’s not a good road to travel down.
We are all evolving in this space but we have to make an effort to embrace it and keep learning because the industry is continuing to grow. Most importantly have fun with it. This is a FUN industry. With that said, if you find that this is NOT fun for you and need help with getting your digital marketing strategy back on track or if you need help in a pinch for a project, feel free to reach out. I am always online, with the exception of the few hours that I am forced to walk away from my computer due to that thing we need on occasion called sleep.
As usual, if you have comments, good , bad, ugly or indifferent, you can find me on Facebook,Twitter or G+
Social Media utilized for businesses purposes is relatively new in comparison to traditional marketing strategies. Social media used to promote events and seminars have been compared to word of mouth marketing, which has been around for quite a while. Similar to word of mouth marketing, social media used correctly offers the unique opportunity to gain a tremendous amount of exposure for events and seminars.
One of the most important things about using Social Media effectively is to know your channels, followers and audience. The user demographic on all social media channels is very different, so when sending your message by way of social media it is good to keep this in mind.
Channels that you should incorporate into your marketing strategy:
SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS
Facebook: Is one of the most powerful social media channels available. It presents you with the opportunity to harness this power to expose your seminars and events to, not only your friends and followers, but the friends and followers of your friends as well.
Seminars and events:
Facebook Business Page: If you do not have a Facebook Business Page, you should create one. This presents you with the opportunity to have people “LIKE” your page AND you can now market to them. Facebook page followers usually prefer that you post two to three times per day.
Upon creation of your business page, make sure you add content about your business, and or what you do. If the primary focus of your business is seminars and events, make sure you list as much detail as possible about what kinds of events and seminars you conduct.
Creation of a Facebook Cover page is very important. This allows people that have liked your page to get an idea of what you do and what your business is all about within a few seconds, just by viewing your cover page. The Facebook cover photo dimensions are 315px x 851px. You can find a cheat sheet of all social media images sizes online. Remember to view the Facebook cover photo terms of usage.
Facebook Events: This is a great channel that you can use to create and promote your events.
Personal Page Events: If you have people that you are connected to on your personal page, you can utilize this avenue to invite them to your event. If you have never created an event you can find instructions on The Facebook Help Page.
Twitter: Is a very different platform than Facebook because it lends itself to a more conversational tone and followers are extremely tolerant to more sharing of content. This is especially the case if you provide information that is helpful to them in addition to your self-promotion pieces. Most of the people that are following you on Twitter are following because they are interested in what you are sharing, your events, promotions etc. So, they are very open to 140 character short bursts of information about what you have going on. Just remember to also include useful content, NOT just self-promotion content.
Seminars and events:
Just like Facebook, make sure you create a bio for yourself. Add your website or blog URL if you have either.
Create a twitter header image; the size should be 1500 x 500. If you have the ability to create multiple graphic headers you should consider using different graphics to promote each of your events. If you chose to go this route make sure you have a basic graphic to use for your header image that will be utilized after your events and perfect for general purposes.
Strategy: At one time people just tweeted, but this, like any other social media activity, has evolved.
Scheduling Tweets: It is a good idea to start tweeting about your event/seminar a few days ahead of your event, but it is essential the day before your event. Scheduling these tweets is advisable. Find our more in the Free Social Media Tools section below.
Live Tweeting: Is the latest rage now and if you can arrange this and if you think it may be beneficial to your events, it is advisable. Live Tweeting encourages engagement, your followers feel connected to you. Also, most importantly, everyone that is live tweeting with you is ALSO tweeting about your event to ALL of their followers. This is a way to extend the reach of your event, with the help of your followers.
TV has started utilizing live tweeting as an avenue to increase engagement among fans and actors and it has proven to very successful. So live tweeting during events is something to consider. Twitter recently quantified the impact of live tweeting during television events.
Vine:Was considered rather silly when it first arrived but later people realized how powerful this platform could be for engagement and social sharing. Vine is an app that allows you to video very small snippets of video and loops them together. They are easily shared and people LOVE them. Twitter owns Vine so it is really easy to share between these two platforms. Tide is a company that has successfully utilized Vine for marketing campaigns.
LiveStream: Is a platform that allows you to live stream your event by way of video. This could provide a great avenue to expose your event to people while it is taking place. This platform actually allows you to engage with those that are watching your event as well. This is a very powerful channel that should be added to your arsenal of tools.
LinkedIn:Is one of the most power social media platforms utilized primarily for businesses purposes, and they have absolutely NO competition in this space. For business events/seminars it is essential that LinkedIn is utilized.
Seminars and events:
Connecting: LinkedIn is a powerful platform in which to connect and network with like-minded professionals. It started out as a platform, which was viewed as an online resume, however they have grown beyond this due to a variety strategic company acquisitions.
Company Page: Is an essential part of keeping your network abreast of what you are doing, your events and seminars.
Groups: Is an area that should be utilized to present yourself as an authority in your industry. It can also be used to promote your events and seminars.
Articles: Pulse is the newest option that is really being aggressively pushed by LinkedIn. This portion of the site allows you to post articles directly to LinkedIn, instead of using an outside blogging platform. This is a very powerful tool because when you have completed your article and it’s posted, everyone in your network will be notified that you just posted a new article for the LinkedIn Pulse .
Slideshare:Is a great platform that allows you to post PowerPoint and Keynote presentations to a social format. This allows followers to view, share and embed your presentations to their blogs, websites etc.
LinkedIn owns Slideshare so your Slides can also be incorporated into your LinkedIn Profile using the LinkedIn Slideshare app.
Seminars and events: If you utilize a PowerPoint for your event or seminar, AFTER you’ve completed your event/seminar, you could post your slides for those that were unable to attend your event.
Google: We all know the power of Google, so utilizing some of what Google has to offer is a definite MUST for promoting your seminars and events.
Google Plus: Is one of the most powerful, yet underutilized social media platforms. The biggest benefit of using Google plus is that content shared on Google plus is factored into search results and will increase your search rank. Your Google+ Page will allow your personal page, your business page and YouTube channel to work together seamlessly to help you to promote your business, seminar or event.
Seminars and events:
Get started by creating a personal Google plus page.
Just like Facebook and Twitter, you have an area to create a cover page. The dimensions are 1192 x 2120. This space, just like for all of these platforms is very important because it is “prime real estate.” The cover page presents you with the opportunity to showcase your talents, display your unique value proposition, and promote yourself and your events.
Google Plus Events: Is a platform that allows you to create an event and invite those that follow you. To find out more about events, check out the Google Plus Events Page.
Seminars and events: This event option should be used at least one week before your event, if possible. You can easily post your seminar or event to this platform and share it with your followers. What’s good about inviting people to your event is that the friends of the person attending your event will also be notified about your event. This is a great way to extend the reach of your seminar or event past just the people you are connected to.
Google Local: IS an amazing and free way to present your business locally. This page, after created is extremely powerful because it utilizes Google Maps in search results, so your business can be found.
YouTube: Is the second most searched platform and one of the most utilized platforms online. People love to watch and share videos, so this platform is a “must “when promoting event/seminars and businesses.
Seminars and events: If you have the capabilities to create a short video about your upcoming event, you could share that on your social media channels to create a buzz about your event or seminar. Creating YouTube videos are a lot easier than they use to be, due to smart phones.
FREE SOCIAL MEDIA TOOLS
Social Media is free if you don’t count the amount of time that it takes to fully take advantage of its benefits. If you go by the “time is money” philosophy, social media might not be considered free at all. The key to utilizing social media to harness the power to promote is taking advantage of ALL of the available tools used to help you work smarter not harder.
Scheduling tools will become your friend and FREE scheduling tools will become your BEST friend. There are a variety of available FREE social media tools to help you manage your time, while giving you the ability to take advantage of all that social media has to offer. You can select to utilize a few or all of them depending on what meet your needs. I use a combination of Facebook scheduling for Pages, Buffer and Laterbro.com. I use Facebook scheduling for pages to schedule my page posts, Buffer to schedule Google plus and Twitter if I have a small amount to post and Laterbro.com if I need to schedule a large quantity of Twitter posts.
Facebook Scheduling for Pages: This was one of the best things ever for people that use Facebook pages to promote their events, seminars and or businesses. To find out more about scheduling posts on your Facebook Page, go the Facebook Help Page.
Buffer: Is one of the best social media scheduling platforms available. Buffer offers a free option and an upgraded version, which includes advanced scheduling options and analytics for your posts. The free version allows you to schedule up to 10 posts on 2 different social media platforms. I like FREE, so I utilize all free options on all platforms.
Laterbro.com is a FREE platform that allows you to schedule posts for Twitter or your personal Facebook page. This is great if you have a larger quantity of tweets to schedule.
Blogs are a great way to promote events and seminars at your own pace and timeline. Your blog allows you the freedom to post content about upcoming events weeks ahead of time to build a buzz about the event. These blog posts can additionally be posted to social media channel to further extend the reach of the seminar or event.
A few things that should be considered as additions to your blog:
Add a calendar of events, this allows your readers to see current and future events and seminars. They can plan to attend your event in advance.
Add as section/page for EVENTS/SEMINARS to your navigation; this allows your blog readers to plan for future events. In this section you could also add a submenu.
Include a Past Events section in the submenu of your navigation. You can add pictures, videos and other content from past events.
Include a Future Events section in the submenu of your navigation, which allows your readers to see what events are coming soon.
As usual, I welcome comments good, bad, ugly or indifferent. I can be found on Facebook,Twitter and Google plus. So follow, circle and reach out!
What Organizations Could Learn From The #VeronicaMarsMovie Kickstarter
I’ve been a huge advocate of technology, continued growth of technology and our ability to move toward the point where technology would play an even larger role in our lives. I embraced QR codes back in the day when no one even knew what a QR code was, I’ve been working with augmented reality and I have been looking forward to the semantic web. I won’t even mention my continued outraged that we have not realized our technological potential yet, to the point where we have flying cars. I will feel as if we’ve arrived technologically, when The Jetson’s era of the flying automobiles are standard like sports cars or SUV’s. I will continue to be a little disappointed that we are still not flying about, speeding above traffic and or zooming our way around traffic jams, as we should be at this point in our lives. I’m not bitter or anything; it’s just an observation.
Well, considering that we are no longer attached to the wall for our phone usage, we carry around pocket-sized computers called mobile devices and we live in an era where said mobile devices have single handedly changed how we communicate. I can’t be totally disappointed about those advancements but, you know, the flying car thing. In spite of, you know the flying car thing, I am still bowled over by technology and it’s amazing advancements. This is one of the reasons that I continue to be astounded that there are still a percentage of people that have not embraced it yet. As if anyone would want technology to roll backward to allow those that have not embraced it to wallow in their paper driven comfort zones at the expense of more technological growth, and maybe a few flying cars. Not bitter. Ok, bygones.
There have been many indications that technology will continue to grow and excel at a quicker rate of speed than ever. The difference in this growth of technology as compared to growth of different industries in the past is that, people, consumers and their unquenchable need to consume information have been driving this technology and social media growth. People want to share information with their friends, family and colleagues continuously. Social Media platforms have presented the opportunity to do so.
One of the most drastic changes in technology has been the ability for regular, every day people to make a difference by reaching out to people and organizations seamlessly. Just a few years ago, this would not have been possible. This has had a profound effect on both the people that are reaching out AND the people and / or organizations that have been reached.
This is most evident in how regular everyday folks used their voices online to prompt an action. One of the most amazing displays of social media, used for change happened recently and it was a game-changer because social media was utilized to change a traditional media action. That action utilized the online fundraising platform Kickstarter to bring back TV show Veronica Mars, which was cancelled after 3 seasons. I never watch the show but that really doesn’t matter. The point here is that THIS was a huge thing. It was amazing example of how; due to social media channels the voices of regular people were heard louder and most importantly prompted an action.
The power of the people has been a driving force behind social media and has the ability to make tangible changes, when that force and drive are loud enough. The voices were loud and reverberating with the fans in regard to their need to see the series Veronica Mars come to the big screen and that prompted an action.
At one time, when a TV show was cancelled there was just nothing else to be done. There was NO coming back unless the network deemed it so. At best, fans of a cancelled show could try to get a printed petition together and try even harder to get that petition to the powers that be. WELLz, that was then and this is now, times are –a – changin’.
Social Media has given a powerful voice to people that previously had no power to create this kind of change. Now people have the power to spearhead change, and prompt action, whether it’s getting a petition to The Whitehouse or getting their darling Veronica Mars pushed to the big screen. In this situation fans felt so passionate about this show that they took matters and fundraising into their own hands by raising the funds needed by way of Kickstarter to get the production of the film moving.
Organizations that remain clueless about the power of the people driving change through social medial should check out the Veronica Mars Kickstarter fundraiser. Rob Thomas created the project with the goal of raising two million dollars in 30 days and just 11 hours later they HIT their 2 million dollar goal. YES, 11 hours! Rob’s fundraising team didn’t stop at 2 million dollars, so the fundraising continued. The last time I checked, they were up to $5,702,153. THIS is the power of the people and the power of social media to prompt an action.
People; have been very social in regard to the media that they’ve consumed and how they’ve share media content with friends, colleagues and family. The sharing of content has been a powerful driving force behind social media and this is what has made the Veronica Mars Kickstarter fundraiser so successful. This could NOT have been accomplished utilizing traditional media channels and antiquated marketing techniques. Utilizing social media strategically allowed the masses to become the media and they seized that power to make things happen. THIS is why social media cannot and should not be ignored by the many organizations that have been resistant to change. The power of the people and the share button should not be minimized by anyone, especially organizations in this social media driven era!
The Veronica Mars movie project was, I’m sure just one of the many projects to come, that will grow legs and sprint ahead due to the power of social media, community, sharing and the voice of the people. Organizations must start to recognize the powerful voices of the community and utilize them to reach out to customers, clients and the public at large. The days of marketing teams sitting in their office cranking out pre-packaged messages and making arbitrary decisions are a thing of the past because we do live in a different world now. Those that cancelled the original Veronica Mars TV show, I’m sure are dumbfounded by the power of the people and the use of social media to get this project off the ground.
Organizations must recognize and empower their marketing teams in order to harness the power of social media for the good of the company as well as the good of clients and customers. Can we say BRAND AMBASSADORS??
Social Media is, now a part of our lives regardless of some organizations that chose to opt out. Advice: Catch up or be left behind and crushed by your competitors.
LinkedIn is one of the absolute best resources online for pursuing a new career, advancing in your current career, networking or exploring partnership opportunities. There is no greater business focused, social media platform that allows you the opportunity to connect with such a wide range of business people.
I recently spoke to a few young people that were looking for new employment opportunities and they were ALL unaware of the potential lurking behind this powerful career platform. So, I started explaining to them how important it was for them to have a presence on LinkedIn.
Anyone that is in the market for a job or even if a person is just thinking that they will be searching for a new job or opportunity, LinkedIn is the BEST place to start their search. With most employers using social media as an avenue to search for employment candidates, chances are that these employers will start with LinkedIn. So, it is imperative that one should make sure their LinkedIn Profile is up to par and powered up!
LinkedIn can often be overlooked as a part of the jobs search process, because it is rather business oriented as compared to traditional job boards. This platform should be used in addition to traditional job boards. I would even go so far to say that LinkedIn should be used as the primary source for job search because it adds a social and networking aspect that traditional online job boards just do not have.
One of the benefits of LinkedIn is that employers tend to pay way more to list jobs on LinkedIn than a traditional job board. This is an indication that they are willing to do what is necessary to find the best candidate for their available positions. Companies that are willing to invest more to find great talent will be more likely to offer greater benefits, treat their workers better and do more to make sure that they hold on to their employees because they value them. YOU want to be that candidate and ultimately be the employee that is valued.
So, take a look at the slide show below to give you tips on how to Power Up Your LinkedIn Profile!
As usual, I welcome any comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent. You can find me on Google+, Facebook and Twitter, circle and follow. I welcome dialogue!
All of my friends are very familiar with my Bleeding Green love for The EAGLES. Due to this I am not overly enthused about The Superbowl, mostly because The Eagles haven’t played in a Superbowl for quite a while. No, I’m not bitter or anything. Bygones. So, due to The Eagles perpetual no-show in the Superbowl for so many years, I usually resign myself to indulging in the halftime show if there’s a good act and watching the fabulous commercials.
Well, this year The Eagles looked pretty good even though they didn’t make the Superbowl. I’m not bitter or anything. So, I decided to create a cool Eagles tribute video during the Superbowl hoopla. In addition to video creation, I resigned myself to watching some pretty darn fabulous Superbowl commercials and was actually looking forward to it. I was especially looking forward to the GoDaddy commercial, which was due to show a woman quitting her job live. Considering that 71% of people hate their jobs, this would have been an interesting thing to see.
Did I say that I look forward to the Superbowl commercials because The Eagles usually aren’t playing in the Superbowl? Did I also say that I wasn’t bitter about that? Well, guess what? MY Superbowl commercials were “Leaked” so now my total Superbowl experience has been altered. No EAGLES, No commercials and a halftime show that was high on the “Meh” list.
The marketing teams that decided to “Leak” the commercials, due to the buzz created last year from the leaked commercials by way of social media channels to create a similar buzz may have done themselves a disservice. The creativity of this move was nonexistent.
Tide, on the other hand took creating a buzz to another level with the rocking use of Vine and Twitter. Tide created a fun and amazing line of videos referencing the Superbowl, yet still promoting their product.
What Tide did is an indication of the path that some of the more creative companies will be utilizing to take their marketing strategies to the next level. Companies that really GET where new media marketing is going, will start to utilize much more creative avenues and leverage the many digital marketing platforms that are available to promote their brand.
A slow clap can go either way @Carmax. @Tide is here for the messy ones #GetsItOut #SB48
Mind your wings, please. They can be dangerous @VW @Tide #GetsItOut #SB48
Bear in @beatsmusic ad has serious moves. Our bear? Not so much. Watch out for big bad stains. @Tide#GetsItOut #SB48
Adding a puppy to the family @Cheerios? Beware of puppy stains. @Tide #GetsItOut #SB48
So, kudos to TIDE for rocking social media, displaying the new direction of marketing and showing that THIS is how a creative digital team get down!
4 Things That Innovative Companies Are Doing In 2014 To Avoid The #DigitalApocalypse
There will always be companies that are innovators, adapters and sadly those that are incapable of seeing the future of industry. This is the business equivalent to natural selection, unfortunately.
America was once driven by the production of goods and as we transitioned to a more service oriented country, there was an evolution of sorts. There were companies that adapted and some that didn’t do so well. Those companies went the route of the steel mills in Allentown, Pa. The decline of a primarily production oriented world to a more service oriented world took a while to totally decline, but the transition of traditional to digital, that we are living through now is moving at a much faster pace toward its demise.
Two examples of the extreme change and fast transition from a traditional to digital world is the release of the Beyonce album, or I should call it the Beyonce Digital Project because that’s what it was. Some are saying, what’s the big deal and who really cares. WELL, we all must take notice because the release of the Beyonce Digital Project was a game changer in the music industry. This album release will change how marketing is done moving forward and this change will not be limited to just the music industry. At one time artists had to go through a series of procedures and promotions to push a new project. Beyonce’s release flipped the script on the entire industry in a mind-blowing move that totally blind sighted the industry. She used the brand that she built by way of social media, to be her own team of brand ambassadors willing to plop down their hard earned money to grab that digital release. In this bold move, Beyonce went directly to the consumer, cutting out any and everyone in the process by releasing her music directly to iTunes to be downloaded digitally. THIS was HUGE and changed the game more that we could ever imagine.
The second instance that displayed a step in a digital direction was Paramount dealing the deathblow to film, as we once knew it. Paramount will be the first movie studio to go all-digital with the distribution of their films. THIS IS HUGE! At one time, Paramount would release films in 35 mm format, which costs around $2,000. Now, due to going digital with the future releases of film, they can release films in digital format at around the $100.00 price point. The kicker here is that although this format is cheaper for the movie distributor, the smaller movie houses will incur the brunt of this move at least initially. These smaller and probably mostly independent movie houses will have to shell out upwards of $70,000 to become digital ready. This again, is a huge demonstration of the “adapt or die” philosophy, which will impact some business in an adverse way.
Both of above examples are an indication that we are at the beginning of a full blow digital revolution. Organizations should take notice of the changes that are happening before their eyes, some will but many won’t. I’ve actually noticed that some organizations are not embracing digital at all but in fact, they are moving back to their toasty non-digital comfort zone. All indications point toward a mostly digital world so it’s advantageous to embrace the change sooner rather than later. Progress is never comfortable but is inevitable, ready or not.
Although the changes that are happening within organizations are not as extreme as the two examples that I spoke of previously, companies still must adapt to a world that is moving closer to all digital. Below are four relatively simple things that can save your organization from the #DigitalApocalypse.
Concentrating on Content:
There is an ongoing debate about content; it’s effects on SEO, if it should be called Content Marketing and more. Who cares about all of the back and forth and the correct phrasing, WHATEVER! What matters is that without content, moving into 2014, you will most definitely be screwed.
The importance of content is irrefutable, you must have it and it must be GREAT. Content will effect your entire digital marketing plan, your social media strategy, your SEO and more. Content creation has become a $118.4 billion industry. Those numbers alone are an indication of the importance of great content. So prepare to become a publisher, outsource your content marketing or essentially become invisible online.
If you think about the importance of content creation it is very logical, if you produce more quality content it increases the amount of content that is available to be indexed by Google. This is especially important after the Hummingbird changes with Google, which was a game changer for websites, indexing and SEO.
NOW, it is just not enough to grab your local black hat SEO dude that promised to get you to the top of Google and have him buy some back links for you. In fact if you do that, you may not need content for quite a while, because Google may penalize your website or your website could even be banned.
At one time the black hat SEO route, to increase search rank was a method that could get results, if only for a short while. Even if the results were temporary it would allow your neighborhood black hat SEO dude to run out his 3-month contract while looking like the magical SEO guru. NOW that is not enough, so black hat SEO dude may have to step his game up. The folks over at Google are pretty darn smart and are hip to those tactics. The days of black hat SEO are seriously numbered if not extinct.
Leaving black hat SEO methods behind in favor of content creation is a great route to go and it’s an above board method of increasing rank with Google without the risk of being penalized. Content creation will allow companies, small and large to compete on a level playing field, for moving up in search ranking with Google. No matter the size of the company, if they produce great content and if they push that content by way of their social media channels THEY will reign supreme in the relevance game with Google.
Content is truly KING for a variety of reasons:
Great content allows you to present your company as an authority in your industry, increasing your rank on Google.
Content will increase the likelihood that people will link to your website, this solves your back link issue. Hence, increasing your rank with Google.
Great content shared on social media was not thought of as important a few years ago, but those days are over. Social Media is extremely important and sharing great content on social media channels allows you to appear “likeable” and this will increase your rank with Google.
Great content with effective keywords increases your on page optimization and guess what? It will [let’s say it all together now] increase your rank with Google.
The takeaway about content:
There is NO easy button, no guru to bail you out and no work around. YOU must start to produce great content if you want to become relevant enough with Google to increase your ranking. Google is a business, just in case that has slipped the minds of folks. As a business it is their job to produce the best results for search queries because this allows them to generate ad revenue and to STAY in business. Gaming the system is not the best route to take at this time with Google. So guess what, either make a decision to dedicate yourself to the work needed to create great content that is worthy of being pushed higher in search ranking or your competitors will. It’s very simple.
Focusing on Mobile
Mobile is not going away, primarily because we have evolved beyond talking on the phone that is attached to the wall. Beyond just the telephone aspect of your mobile device, it has essentially become a pocket-sized computer that forward thinking organizations are using for targeting a previously untapped demographic.
At one time it was just enough for organizations to have a website that displayed the brand, company name and address. Then we progressed to having a Facebook page with a company brand and relevant content. NOW it is not optional but imperative that organizations have a mobile presence as well.
With the decline of desktop and laptop sales the increase in buying trends for mobile and tablets are hard to miss. I actually had a conversation with a Director of Marketing at one of the largest organizations in my area that said, “We do not need a mobile presence.” My mind slammed shut with a final, “Conversation Over” as she was obviously living through a #DigitalApocalypse.
The takeaway about mobile:
It doesn’t matter if you decide to go with a responsive design or traditional mobile design. It is, however imperative that your company’s online presence be viewable by mobile and tablet, this is no longer an option.
#DigitalApocalypse is the disastrous phenomenon in which individuals; organizations and entities have selected NOT to embrace our new digital world.
I will be the first person to tell you that I am not really a numbers person, but what I should say is that I am not a numbers person when those numbers have no relevance to my interests.
I took a web Analytics class in grad school, I absolutely loved it and I was immediately HOOKED. This was a tough class for some but for me, the concepts immediately clicked. I think this is because I saw how beneficial these concepts would be moving forward. When I saw the heat maps and demographics I fell in love, in fact it was love at first sight. Oops I’m so sorry, I’ve digressed terribly.
One thing that I immediately loved about analytics then and what I still love about it now is that it shows the data. You know where your visitors are coming from, you know how long they’ve stayed, you know which pages and content they’ve focused upon.
I can never express the importance of analytics enough; because analytics display your success and bring attention to areas that you may need to focus upon more, in graphic details. If your brain rejects the word analytics think of it in terms of measuring your results, because that’s exactly what analytics are. Analytics measure the effectiveness of your campaigns, your efforts, and your time. They allow you to see what’s happening, what you are doing successfully and what you need to improve upon.
The takeaway about analytics:
You can have the most beautiful, fancy website with all of the bell and whistles imaginable, but if you have no data to analyze the successfulness of your web campaigns, your website is essentially worthless. This applies to traditional websites and mobile websites alike.
Increasing Your Google+ Usage
There is so much back and forth about Google+, it always has been and probably always will be. I was a part of the original beta team on Google+, as were most of my digital marketer friends, so of course I have always been a huge advocate of the platform.
Google+ has been improved upon since its original debut! The layout has improved substantially, Google integration has greatly improved and it has grown its user base.
Although the improvements to the look and feel of Google+ have been spectacular what is more impressive is that content posted on Google+ show up in search results. This is why I don’t understand the push back about this platform. Why would we NOT want our content to show up in search results, after all that is WHY we are there right, why we are online, why we work so hard to increase our exposure, right? Increased exposure means more business and more sales, which is after all what most web presences are all about.
The takeaway about Google+
If you want more exposure on Google start using Google+, it’s just that simple.
Digital Marketing is a game changer on a worldwide level but organizations must have the ability to recognize the change and adapt in mid-stride sometimes, due to the quick nature of the changes. We are living through an exciting time for those involved with digital marketing and those that are willing to embrace the change. Lets all embrace the many changes that I anticipate are ahead and enjoy our brave new digital world.
As usual, I welcome any comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent. I can be found on Google+, Facebook or Twitter, so please circle and follow.
10 Steps to Using Digital Marketing Strategies To Find Your Dream Job in 2014
2013 is coming to an end, therefore it’s time to analyze, evaluate and make changes going into the New Year. We all make resolutions about, health, wealth and happiness so why not include changing our employment situation. This is especially the case if you are one of the 71% that hate their jobs.
When I wrote the article, 71% of people hate their job; I was astounded by the response to the article. I was more surprised that there were so many people that were unhappy with their employment situation.
Sometimes people can feel stuck in a situation due to a variety of reasons and they become very reluctant to make a move, so they just grin and bear it. It seems that there are up to 71% of the population that are willing to grin and bear it.
Guess what people, we are moving into a new year so NOW is the perfect time to make changes in your life. More people need to be a part of the 29% that LOVE their job instead of the 71% that hate it.
We are now living in a very digital world, so now we need to look at new ways in which we can gain the edge in competing for jobs. If you are a Digital Marketer, you may find yourself consulting, working for an organization or both. Sometimes as digital marketers, we do not effectively market OURSELVES as a BRAND and that is very important.
If you are in a more traditional industry, chances are you are NOT marketing yourself as a BRAND either. In this increasingly digital world, all people that are looking for new opportunities should start to see themselves as brands so that they can compete in this tough job market. Most people are using some type of social media recreationally. So, if you are involved with social media even socially, these ten tips will be perfect for your 2014 strategy for grabbing your dream job.
Whether you are a digital marketer or just someone looking for a new career path, it is imperative that you see beyond your present situation and come up with a creative way to change your career path. The first step is visualizing yourself, not as JUST a person trying to get a job, but as a brand. It is very important that you think of yourself as a BRAND and you should market yourself accordingly.
A huge part of viewing and marketing yourself as a brand, is maintaining a very visual digital marketing footprint separate from the brands that you work with, if you are a digital marketer. It is GREAT to work in this ever-growing digital marketing industry but as digital marketers we must maintain our own digital marketing persona totally separate from the organizations that employ us or that we consult with. So, it is very important that we continue to develop and grow our own individual personal brand and digital footprint.
If you are NOT a digital marketer you should start to incorporate some branding content into your personal profiles. It is very important that all people see themselves as marketers, if only to market oneself to the world in seeking a new or better career path. It is more important than ever to utilize social channels for career advancement in addition to traditional résumés and this is primarily due to the growing importance of our digital footprint.
I’ve read on numerous occasions that traditional resumes are very close to becoming irrelevant because our entire digital presence is available online for all to see. More and more recruiters are utilizing the digital presence of employment candidates to get a better feel for potential employees before they even read resumes. This is one of the reasons that we must make sure that we have a positive and flattering digital footprint and that we continue to develop our own personal brand.
There are pluses and minuses to having your entire online persona for all to see. The biggest plus is that you are always visible; the biggest minus is that you’re always visible. LOL. This is the primary reason that we must be aware, more than ever about the types of content that we display on our digital marketing channels. So it is imperative that we have a strong personal brand and a positive digital footprint. Take a look at the ten steps below, to help develop your personal brand:
1. Logo: Create a logo for your brand. My brand is Anise Smith, so the first thing I did when I started to develop my brand almost five years ago was to have my name created in logo form. If you are creating a new logo make sure you have it created in 3 different formats. Have your logo created in EPS format, which allows it to be duplicated for print and web, PNG for use when you need a transparent background AND jpg for general use.
2. Uniform Branded Look: You should have a consistent branded look across all of your social media channels. So create your Facebook cover, Twitter layout and other digital collateral with the same branded look.
3. Facebook: CLEAN up your Facebook profile! I have seen some things in my daily virtual travels that would definitely be viewed as negative. If you want to promote a positive personal brand YOU MUST start with presenting a positive Facebook image.
I am connected to my father, teenage son and many family members on Facebook, so I only share information that I would share with them offline. This is a great way to mentally keep your content clean and shareable. Don’t post information that you wouldn’t share with your grandparents, parents or children. If you wouldn’t yell it across the dinner table during a family meal, DON’T post it on Facebook. PERIOD!
Before you hit the POST button, think about how an employer would view your post. If there’s even a question of how your post would be viewed by employers or just followers in general, DON’T hit POST. Better yet, picture your grandma peering over your shoulder while you’re writing your post. If grandma wouldn’t approve, don’t post.
Facebook is a huge part of branding yourself and you should use it wisely. Assume that ALL potential employers will check your Facebook profile, because they probably will. So it is best that you put your best foot forward starting here. After you clean up your profile, showcase yourself. This may involve loosening some of your privacy settings to showcase certain areas of your profile.
Make a cover photo that showcases your talent. Facebook covers are 851 × 316.
Add your employment history, in the work and education section.
If you attended college, utilize the education section to add information about your school.
Use the project area to add the projects that you’ve worked.
Facebook just added a section for professional skills; add your skills in this section.
Don’t forget to use the contact us section to add your website, blogs and social media channels.
Facebook can be utilized almost as a resume if you add the right content and if you are a little creative.
4. Twitter: This is a great avenue to showcase your knowledge and to present yourself as an expert in your area, which is very important in creating a brand for yourself. Having a great Twitter profile allows you to make amazing connections while building followers organically, both of which are crucial to your personal brand. So make sure you are utilizing this channel and showcasing your capabilities to your followers and potential followers. If you are unfamiliar with Twitter start practicing keeping your verbiage short, because you only have 140 characters to make your point. So, you must use them wisely. To get started check out these easy steps:
Create a header for your Twitter layout, it should be no larger than 1252 × 626.
Create a Twitter background with your contact information. Twitter backgrounds are 1920 × 1200.
Display a presentable image of yourself.
Add a descriptive; yet brief bio using 140 characters.
The importance of Twitter cannot be overlooked in the process of branding yourself. Studies have shown that recruiters from the top employers in the country, are using Twitter as a way to recruit top talent. YOU want to be considered the top talent and you want to be noticed by these recruiters. So Twitter is essential!
5. Google+: There has always been some controversy about the importance of this platform. I’m not exactly sure why, since it is a GOOGLE platform. Most know that Google is pretty darn awesome. So, needless to say I’ve been a fan since the Beta release! Another reason to get acclimated to Google +, Facebook has been losing a bit of steam recently so it is very important that you create a profile on Google+. Additionally content shared on Google+ shows up in search results. Enough said!
*Note* You can schedule your posts for Google+ and other social channels. I’ve used a few but I find that, Buffer is the best scheduling platform available.
6. Blog: I am really partial to WordPress but the most important thing is that you have a blog, which you contribute to regularly. So, select the platform that you are most comfortable with. [Wordpress, WordPress, WordPress, hmm, did I suggest WordPress?] A blog allows you to present yourself as an expert in your field utilizing your own content AND it allows you to provide this content to your social media channels.
Additionally you can create a page on your blog for your online resume. A web version of your resume allows you the convenience of sending a link quickly from pc, tablet OR mobile device directly to anyone that is interested.
Also, make sure that your blog is viewable by way of mobile device. So many people are mobile that it’s almost mandatory that your blog be viewable by mobile device. This also offers you the unique opportunity to respond to emails from recruiters and send a resume link right from your mobile device, within seconds. WINNING!
7.Triberr:If you have a blog YOU ABSOLUTELY MUST be a part of Triberr. If you are not familiar with Triberr, you need to become familiar quickly. Triberr is THE BEST platform to utilize if you want to get exposure for your blog. This platform is second to none!
So, Triberr in a nutshell: It’s a platform that allows exposure of your blog through mutual sharing of content. As a part of Triberr you would join tribes of interest. After joining the tribe(s) you would then connect the RSS feed of your blog to the Tribe. This allows your tribe mates to share your blog content to their Twitter followers. Additionally all of your tribemates will have their blog RSS feed attached so that you can share their blog content with your Twitter followers.
The Triberr platform allows you to multiply the reach of your blog through the mutual sharing of content. This platform is Google Juice for blogs and if you have a blog you need to be a part of Triberr, period. Check out Welcome to Triberr and the Guide To Getting Started With Triberr.
8.LinkedIn: Is probably the most important step you can take to meet contacts, extend your network and place yourself in the faces of recruiters searching for your expertise! Make sure you have a presence on Linkedin, make the proper connections, get endorsements, join groups and totally embrace this platform.
MOST companies in search of top talent will be actively involved with LinkenIn, so make sure you have a GREAT profile and keep it updated.
Use keywords in your headline and through out your profile.
Use an appropriate profile photo.
Complete your entire profile.
Add slideshows, links and blog posts to display your skills.
Share professional content that is relevant to careers or your industry.
Monitor your profile because you can see who has been checking you out. If you have a visit from a person of interest, visit their profile. They will now know that you have visited their profile and this may allow you to spark up a conversation.
Follow companies that you have an interest in because you may be able to connect with people of interest at that company.
Linkedin is one of your most valuable resources you can utilize, if you want to change your employment situation.
9. YouTube: Videos are a GREAT way to showcase your talents. So create a 2 Minute video to showcase your capabilities.
Add keywords to any and all videos that you create because this will help Google to index your videos.
Add your video to your website or blog.
Share your video on your social media channels.
Add your video to your LinkedIn profile.
10. BrandYourself.com: Allows you to monitor your digital footprint as it displays on Google. You will get a report if any of your digital marketing channels have gone up or have fallen down in ranking. This service is GREAT because it allows you to see how your brand is displayed on Google according to rank and it is FREE!
Are you currently utilizing any of these platforms to brand yourself? Are you using different channels? Let me know! As usual, I welcome any comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent. I can be found on Google+, Facebook and Twitter, circle me and/or follow me.