Search

Anise Smith Marketing

Social Media Professor | Digital Marketing Technologist | Mobile Web | Digital Webinar Developer | Analytics

Tag

Marketing and Advertising

Social, Web And Search: It’s All About The Data, Big, Small Or Otherwise

Social, Web And Search: It’s All About The Data, Big, Small Or Otherwise
Social, Web And Search: It’s All About The Data, Big, Small Or Otherwise

 

Social, Web And Search: It’s All About The Data, Big, Small Or Otherwise

 

There’s a lot of dialogue about social media, blogging, content marketing and more, used as a means to market a business or brand. The discussion is continuous because marketing has changed so much that businesses are scrambling to keep up. The ultimate goal for organizations is to have the continued ability to promote and market their company, and the changes are making this a challenge to say the least.

 

Digital Marketing
Digital Marketing

According to Adobe, the marketing industry has changed more in the past 2 years than it has in the last 50. THAT is huge! So, there are many companies that are playing catch-up in a very real and frantic sort of way. The thing about playing catch-up is, that at some point you expect to catch up and that usually happens. However, when things are moving as fast as the marketing industry is, while you are playing catch-up the pace continues to accelerate. This makes it so much tougher to catch up, but it is something that has to be done if one would like their business to survive this technology boom.

 

The acceleration toward digital marketing and progression away from traditional print media created an avenue for social media to take a foothold in the consciousness of everyone and this includes businesses. Social Media was just taking off a few years ago and it has now established itself as a huge part of the every day lives of individuals and businesses alike.

 

There are some businesses that recognized the importance of social media immediately, embraced it and is now thriving in that space. However, as with anything there are still organizations that have yet to see the importance of this media and are now lagging behind terribly. The companies that opted to task their major marketing efforts within the social media space to an intern or their neighbors teenager without bothering to embrace it and get to know more about the space are the organizations that will find themselves that much farther behind. As for the companies that were quick to embrace social, those are the organizations that will continue to move ahead in the space.

 

The companies that immediately recognized the importance of social media are diving head first into this evolving digital marketing space with a vengeance. These companies are the companies that have recognized that the social media honeymoon is over. Further, they’ve realized that it’s time to take social media to the next level. That next level is focused upon content, data and its relevancy to their organization.

 

DataData, big, small or otherwise is the driving force behind having the ability to dominate the digital space or falling even father behind in this ever-transforming space. If you think about it, data is really not that new because traditional marketing utilized data to a certain degree for print campaigns and other non-digital media. The difference with data in the digital marketing space however is a bit different because it’s on a much larger scale due to the sheer volume.

 

Historically, those involved with traditional marketing have experienced challenges in areas of measurement of ROI. Data, big, small or otherwise provides the necessary information in which to bridge this gap. Data provides an avenue in which to measure the results of any marketing campaign and companies that have been more progressive in the digital marketing space are recognizing the importance of data in their digital marketing campaigns.

 

Data and companies focus on it will push one dimensional social media “experts” to step up their game in this digital marketing space, as more and more emphasis is placed on providing ROI for campaigns.   Hence, we are moving away from social media that is not measurable to an area in which campaigns are calling for experts with the ability to go beyond just sharing and engaging, to analyzing the results of campaigns.

 

Measurable content is a huge component of the continued growth of social, search, web and visual content. It is actually one of the driving forces behind the growth in the digital marketing space.

 

The need for content that is measurable will continue to rise as the digital marketing space expands. So it is advisable that you brush up on your data and analytics because the maturation of social media just evolved into providing measurable content and analytics. So data and the ability to measure it will become more and more important as the digital marketing space evolves.

 

As organizations gain control over their big data and create the ability to effectively utilize smaller concentrations of data effectively they will start to realize the importance it will play in analysis and the measurement of ROI. Essentially data, big, small and otherwise is very important and will gain more importance as organizations realize that data is the key to dominating the digital marketing space.

 

Big Data
Big Data

Data will continue to create a quandary for organizations and marketers as it continues to grow. Digital marketers that realize the importance of data and have recognized the shift in the digital marketing space to utilizing data will be the segment of marketers that will thrive in this ever-evolving space.

 

As organizations recognize that their power to make more informed operational decisions due to analyzing data, the demand for digital marketers with this ability will increase exponentially. So, goodbye social media gurus, it’s been fun but social media playtime is officially over, because it’s time to analyze some data.

 

As usual, I welcome comment, good, bad, ugly or indifferent. So you can follow and circle me on Google+, Facebook and or Twitter.

 

Source:

Adobe Digital Survey Report 

 

 

Enhanced by Zemanta
Advertisements

4 Things That Innovative Companies Are Doing In 2014 To Avoid The #DigitalApocalypse

4 Things That Innovative Companies Are Doing In 2014 To Avoid The #DigitalApocalypse
4 Things That Innovative Companies Are Doing In 2014 To Avoid The #DigitalApocalypse

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:

Concentrate On Content
Concentrate 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

Focusing on Mobile
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.

Analytics

Analytics
Analytics

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

Increasing Your Google+ Usage
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.

Wrapping up:

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.

Enhanced by Zemanta

QR Codes: Because Why NOT?

QR Codes: Because Why NOT?
QR Codes: Because Why NOT?

QR Codes: Because Why NOT?

 

Three years ago on September 13, 2010, I uploaded a video about QR codes and I got a lot of confused questions that pretty much translated to, “What The Heck!!” At the time I was still learning about this technology, because it was still new to the United States.  I would consume as much information as I could, with the goal of learning more about this cool “new” technology.  In some circles I became the “GoTo” person for QR Code technology.

 

As my excitement grew I started to notice more and more of this technology out there. QR codes were on everything, people had them on their websites, online catalogs and more. I was guilty of this as well, until I though “Hey, wait a minute….” This is all wrong. That is when I started to understand that this technology is being utilized in the “hey new shiny object sort of way” but it was not being used as effectively as it could have been.  That’s when I realized that the usage of QR codes might not ever reach its full potential because in some instances they were being used incorrectly.

 

My findings:

  • There is no reason to add a QR Code to your website because people are usually on your mobile or traditional website when they are viewing the QR Code.  So if you had plans of using the QR code to direct them to your website, they are already there, there’s not need. Don’t use QR codes on a website to direct them to your website.
  • QR Codes that are geared to open to a website should ALWAYS open to a mobile website, not a traditional website. We all know by now that a traditional website may not display properly on a mobile device.  There ARE NO exceptions to this rule.
  • QR Codes should NOT scan to “Download my catalog” because most of the time people have scanned a QR code with their phone. Absolutely NO one wants to use all of their data to download your HUGE PDF catalog to their phone.

 

QR Codes Should Scan To Mobile
QR Codes Should Scan To Mobile

 

The BEST and most practical use of QR Codes are to tie traditional print media to digital media.  As digital marketers we can sometimes not grasp that everyone is NOT so enamored with the growth of technology as we are. However it is true!  There are still many people that are very print-oriented and QR codes are a great option for that population of folks.

 

So as marketers we must recognize that although we are focused on digital media there is still an opportunity to tie traditional print to digital for clients that still utilize this form of marketing.  QR codes are the perfect vehicle to get this done. As a matter of fact, this is the primary reason that QR Codes should NOT be discounted and should be revisited.  There has not been an equivalent and cost effective medium introduced that is capable of tying together these two media as QR codes can, if executed properly.

 

Although it was once thought that NFC could bridge the gap between traditional print media and digital, it has not materialized as we originally thought that it would. This is primarily due to the cost and complexity of this technology for mainstream populations. Since the need to bridge traditional and digital, QR Codes remain the logical and least expensive way to go, as long as traditional marketing remains even a little relevant.

 

At one time we exclusively used traditional marketing, but we all know that things have change. In spite of this, there has not been a total elimination of traditional print media. So, we can still utilize traditional media to drive traffic to digital channels, creating a bit of a fusion between the older traditional marketing strategies and the new emerging digital marketing strategies.

 

Until the total discontinuation of traditional print media, as marketers we must find a way to tie together traditional and digital mediums for ourselves on occasion and for our clients. QR codes can be a very cost effective way to do this.

 

So lets give some thought to revisiting QR codes, if you’ve worked with them before or venture into something new if you haven’t.

 

As usual, I welcome comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent. So follow me me on Facebook, Twitter and/or Google+ and let’s start a QR code discussion!

Enhanced by Zemanta

The What, When, Why and How of Content Creation

The What, When, Why and How of Content Creation
The What, When, Why and How of Content Creation

The What, When, Why and How of Content Creation

 

We have moved full force into a world where marketing has become education based, NOT sales driven as it was in the past and this calls for a different route to be taken with marketing based initiatives.

 

Content creation is rapidly moving toward being a huge driving force behind what once was traditional advertising, marketing and sales.  This changes how we think about marketing in general and will require organizations to re-evaluate their marketing strategies.  Based on these changes, the ability to create original, thought provoking and shareable content is not optional anymore it is mandatory.

 

According to Ad Age’s survey, 55% of marketers have increased their content-marketing budgets this year and is expected to do so in 2014 as well. The companies that are forward thinking enough will be a part of this trend, those that are still old school will not and fall that much father behind in creating the digital footprint needed to present themselves as authorities in their field.

 

At one time there were sales collateral produced by companies that were used to promote that company as an authority in their field. Traditional print pieces, brochures and magazine articles were once used to promote organizations but with so many people living in a plugged in world these channels are no longer as effective as they were during the print era. This is the dilemma, so what’s a company to do?

 

It’s time for companies to take the shift in consumable media serious and open their eyes and minds to change. People are just not consuming media utilizing the channels such as print as much as in the past. Media or content is consumed on social media channels and blogs by way of tablets and mobile devices. So it is imperatives that business who want to be viewed as authorities start to take content creation very serious. Businesses MUST start creating content AND publishing that content to the channels that people are utilizing!

 

So let’s take a look at the what, when, why and how of getting started.

 

What

This is the easiest question you can address because the WHAT of content creation is promoting WHAT it is your organization does. Every office has one or two people that are informed about EVERYTHING about the company. These are also usually the people that have been with the company since the company started. This person is a valuable source of information to a content creator! They are your brand ambassadors and they have the ability to provide the WHAT of content creation for your content creator.

 

When

You should create as much content as you or your company can physically manage and post it as much as possible.  If you get a content creator that is on their game they will be able to stretch out a small amount of content into multiple pieces of creative and engaging posts on a blog.  This content can then be posted over a period of time. It would be a great idea to create a publishing calendar so that you can have an organized and consistent flow of content moving through your digital channels at all times.

 

Why

By providing an abundance of content this allows you or your company to become authorities within your industry. If you become an authority in your industry you can increase your exposure, improve Google placement and potentially increase sales. This is just a no-brainer.

At one time the company with the biggest marketing budget was the company that had the most exposure and sales. The same thing applies here except we are dealing with online content, which has essentially replaced a lot of traditional marketing channels as a way to consume media.

 

How

There are so many ways to create content and so many types of content that you can create, written, visual, video or a combination of all. The most important thing is to provide a variety of types of content and use analytics/insights to gauge the effectiveness of the content that you are providing. Some say that visual content does best, some say video but every audience is different. This is why using the data from analytics is imperative because it will allow you to see what kind of content your readers like. This allows you to create and share more of the content that is in demand and less of the content that is less than favorable.

 

To get a better idea of the importance of creating content for your brand, take a look at the infographic below.

 

Content Marketing
Content Marketing

Infographic via wishpond 

 

As marketing changes so MUST the willingness of companies to keep up with the trends that will keep them ahead of their competitors and content marketing is one of those trends. We no longer have such a high demand for print, brochures but an increasing demand for blogs, newsletters, website articles, white papers, and special reports. Content creators are key to providing this type of content and it is essential that that content be original, engaging and shareable.

 

So stop reading and get started with creating great content for your brand!

 

As usual, I welcome any and all comments good, bad, ugly or indifferent. I can be found on Facebook, Twitter and Google+, find me, follow me and let’s strike up a conversation about content creation!

Enhanced by Zemanta

Hey Old School Marketers: Your Target Audience is DEAD

Hey Old School Marketers: Your Target Audience is DEAD
Hey Old School Marketers: Your Target Audience is DEAD

Hey Old School Marketers: Your Target Audience is DEAD

I grew up in an era that was not technology focused; there were no computers, mobile devices, or Internet when I was in high school. My generation did not even grow up with cable. In fact I remember when cable initially hit the scene, when MTV actually played music and the HUGE campaign “I want My MTV” which was used to push MTV to mainstream. Oh, those were the days. A lot has happened with the growth of technology since my high school years. If you have been able to adapt and embrace this super fast growth of technology, that is fantastic. However, if you have not you could be a little screwed now and a lotta’ screwed later. This, is especially the case if you are trying to run a business based on philosophies and an organizational structure from the 1980’s, MTV Era. The biggest mistake in taking that path is that this audience is dead or on life support.

Think about this, we are reaching an age when we have augmented reality and your business cards can talk. We are moving toward the Semantic Web, closer to an era when ALL of the computers mechanisms in our devices will be able to communicate with each other. Do you seriously THINK that people are in touch with old school methods? NO one is looking backward, or I should say consumers aren’t looking backward. This means that your organization is being left behind,  if you are not forward thinking.

Companies that have not embraced our new social oriented culture and the growing mobile market, are  whistling in the wind. Those companies are targeting a dwindling population. Just visualize it as a numbers game. Think about the target markets that are NOT online and those that are NOT mobile, this number is growing smaller and smaller as more people embrace the digital marketing space. So companies should NOT be gearing  their primary marketing campaigns toward a demographic that is shrinking. It’s really common sense. Companies should be looking to always GROW their audience NOT focus on the shrinking audiences.

Social-Media-Stats-of-2013
Social-Media-Stats-of-2013

In essence, in choosing NOT to adapt to newer technologies companies are choosing to throw in the towel on their businesses whether they realize it or not. Companies MUST go where their audiences are, that’s the only way in which they will continue to grow. In fact Seth Godin wrote a post “What do you think of my brochure? ” 7 YEARS ago, about the total reliance on brochures as a way to reach an audience. That piece was applicable in 2006 and is even more so now.

The Internet is the 2nd most widely utilized channel for news. If people go to the Internet and social media channels for something as valuable and important as news, they will also go there for other information as well. So, every business SHOULD make it a priority to have a strong social media and mobile presence. The old saying, “If we build it, they will come.” definitely applies to a strong digital footprint. On the other hand, if we build it and it’s geared toward a dwindling demographic, they may NOT come. As business owners we should be interested in substantially shifting those odds in our favor by going where our customers are.

Where America Turns To For News  via Gallup.com
Where America Turns To For News via Gallup.com

Ultimately if companies are not tapping a new more social and mobile oriented market with content geared for this demographic, they are taping a dead audience. Take a look at the video below to see exactly HOW much social and mobile is ingrained in who we are, as a culture now.

People are on the go, we now live in a super fast paced world, and people are looking for content that they can access easily and quickly on their mobile device. They DO not want to read a companies long-winded prepackaged full-page ad in whatever magazine that’s lying about in an office or waiting room. They want quick access by way of mobile while they are on the go. So as business owners we must be willing to supply them with this information or they will go to competitors that will.

The take away, while your organization is spewing their prepackaged printed message, other more innovative companies are going where their audiences are and moving past that 1980’s strategy. The time to step it up was a few years ago and companies that have not done so may be living a “STUFF” got real nightmare if they select to continue on this path.

I am not saying that companies should roll over and die, I am trying to subtly nudge those living in a time warp to adapt or die.

As usual, I welcome all comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent. I welcome dialogue even if we don’t agree, so follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ and lets start a conversation.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Due to #Mobile and #Social: Every Business MUST Be An Internet Business

Due to #Mobile and #Social: Every Business MUST Be An Internet Business
Due to #Mobile and #Social: Every Business MUST Be An Internet Business

Due to #Mobile and #Social: Every Business MUST Be An Internet Business

When the Internet initially started to become mainstream in the 90’s there were so many companies that felt as if the, then called World Wide Web, was a fad and that it would go away. Hmmm, “how’d that thought process work for ya?”  Not so well for those that were reluctant in embracing the World Wide Web, now called the Internet.

I cannot fathom why many many years later there are still people in the world that have selected NOT to embrace technology as a part of their lives. I do have a little bit of tolerance for those that are not into it on a personal level but businesses that STILL have not fully embraced technology are doing themselves a disservice.

In 1995 it was perfectly fine to consider getting a website and waffle in the process of getting that done. Fast-forward eighteen years, YES eighteen year, and organizations are STILL waffling and more behind than ever.  We have moved so much beyond just having a website not that it is mind altering.  We have also moved to an era where waffling could allow your competitors to get such a big jump on your organization that you would forever be behind the eight ball.

Due to the super quick growth of the tablet and mobile industry we do not have the luxury of waffling on decisions to go full force into the new and aggressive digital marketing space. In fact, if you have a brick and mortar business, you can really no longer even view your organization as a traditional business. YOU must start to see your business as an Internet business. EVERY BUSINESS IS AN INTERNET BUSINESS now.

There is literally no such thing as traditional business anymore, ANY and ALL businesses must be online; therefore, considered Internet businesses.  With so many people accessing company websites with mobile devices it’s not even enough to have a traditional website. YOU must be mobile.

It amazes me that there are so many organizations that have not grasped the importance of an online presence. It’s been eighteen years or more since the Internet became mainstream, I don’t think it’s going anywhere anytime soon.  Actually the Internet is fast becoming the most effective way to market any business.

Traditional ways of consuming media is a thing of the past, very few people read newspapers, magazine, flyers, brochures and pamphlets as a primary source of information as was once the case. If someone finds your traditional media somewhere, they search for a website or social media channel to find out more about your company using their mobile device.

So companies that are still utilizing these traditional media outlets for the majority of their business are placing themselves behind the eight ball and additionally presenting themselves to their clients as a company that is NOT on their game.

Companies must create a strong Digital Footprint for their brand and use traditional marketing as a means to DRIVE traffic to their online brand, not the other way around. Traditional media as a primary source of gaining information is DEAD, like the steel mills in Allentown. I’m not saying that all companies should stop using traditional media, but I am saying that you must go where your customer base is and that’s online and by way of mobile device.  Simply, people are using mobile devices to access information about YOUR Company and YOUR competitors so that’s where you must go. People are on social media channels accessing information about YOUR Company and YOUR competitors, so that’s where your organization must go.

As we decide to lead our organizations into this digital journey of social media and mobile we must realize that we can not just adapt our old “shove the company pitch in their faces” way of marketing. That does NOT work with social media and no one using a mobile device will want to scroll through an old school organizations long winded pitch about what they do, what they sell, blah blah blah, on their mobile device.

A few keys to reaching your social and mobile audiences are:

  • Mobile Website: YOU must first have a mobile website. This is not even optional anymore.  With the rate of people consuming media on the go if you opt out of having a mobile web presence you are turning your back on a huge amount of customers and YOUR competitors will be right there to grab them from you.
  • Social Media: You must have a strong social media presence AND a strategy that is socially driven. Posting your sales pitch on your channels ONLY displays that you have not fully grasped what our new social oriented world is about. Old school marketing strategy consisted of sharing prepackaged content saying all the right things to push your message without regard for the customer. Social Media is about sharing social oriented content that appeals to YOUR READER. It is NOT about you or your company but about building a relationship with followers, building trust with customers and providing information that THEY will find of value so THEY will then think of your company when it is time to utilize your services. I’ll say that again. It is NOT about you or your company but about building a relationship with followers, building trust with customers and providing information that THEY will find of value so THEY will then think of your company when it is time to utilize your services.

People are on mobile devices AND on social media with their mobile devices so it is imperative that ALL organizations have a presence on both.  Take a look below in the statistic on mobile usage.

As of May 2013:

  • 91% of American Adults have a cell phone
  • 56% of American Adults have a smart phone
  • 67% of cell phone owners check their phone for messages, alerts and calls EVEN if the phone is not ringing or vibrating.
  • 44% of people sleep with their phone next to their bed.

As of April 2012:

  • 55% of adult cell phone users use the Internet on their mobile, which has doubled in three years.
  • 31% of cell phone Internet users mostly use their mobile device for Internet, not desktops or laptops.
  • 17% of ALL adults cell phone owners use their cell ONLY for accessing the Internet.
  • 31% of cell phone uses look for health or medical information online.
  • 68% of Smartphone users use their device to access the Internet.
68% of Smartphone users use their device to access the Internet
68% of Smartphone users use their device to access the Internet

With desktop computer usage on the decline, laptop usage rising and mobile usage growing at a super quick rate of speed businesses,  MUST start to see their businesses as Internet businesses. They can no longer AFFORD to ignore having a strong presence in the SOCIAL and MOBILE space.

Mobile usage is on the rise AND desktop is on the decline
Mobile usage is on the rise AND desktop is on the decline

It’s time to ADAPT your ORGANIZATIONAL strategies to the new the new mobile and social world NOT keep your same old school strategies and add digital as an afterthought. It’s a new world squirrel Adapt or die.

If you have any questions or comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent, I can be reached socially on a variety of channels. Follow me on Facebook, Google + or Twitter.

ALSO if you’d like your business to go mobile check out WordPressPressMobile.net or the WordPressMobile.net Facebook page, they are doing great things over there.

Sources:

Pew Internet http://pewinternet.org/

Enhanced by Zemanta

#GooglePlus, #SocialSearch And Why You’re SCREWED If You’re Not Taking It Seriously

Google Plus IS Social Search

 

I was a HUGE fan of Google Plus from its initial introduction and I was one of the many people within my social circle that jumped on board immediately.  We were all a part of the original beta testers and were immediately impressed with this platform.  In the earlier stages of Google plus, there were many that were of the “either or” mentality about social media, either they leave Facebook or try Google Plus. Even with so many doubting the importance of Google plus, there were many within my social circles that knew that Google was on to something.  Many, like myself are still of that mindset.

 

I had a discussion over a year ago, with a recreational Facebook user that argued how irrelevant Google Plus was and how it would remain so because HE felt as if Facebook would always rule. As a recreational social media user that shared pictures on Facebook two or three times and would log on every 3 months or so, how could he recognize the importance of a platform beyond his own minimal recreational use.  I won’t even go into why anyone NOT living under a rock in Narnia with centaurs would ever minimize a Google platform. With the exception of a few platforms, Google has been known to turn dust into gold.

English: Google+ wordmark

Although I have always been excited about the possibilities of Google Plus I never thought of it as a platform for casual users. I always thought of Google plus and its extraordinary capabilities for business owners and digital marketers. Honestly I never pictured a person like Mr. Recreational user pounding away and connecting on Google plus. However I did think of digital marketers like myself and other likeminded marketers in my social circles utilizing this as a huge platform to boost their exposure and their clients’ exposure in ways that we have never seen before, even with Facebook.

I am not comparing it to Facebook beyond placing in into the category of Social Media platform.  I’m not minimizing Facebook in anyway, because who could ever minimize a platform that really was a pioneer in the sharing and oversharing world that we live in today. Facebook literally changed HOW we communicate, how much we communicate and even extended into the workplace changing the marketing and advertising fabric of practically EVERY organization in business.  Facebook could NEVER be minimized because they really changed the world and our views of communication and sharing information.

Although Facebook boasts over one billion active users Google plus has the power of the biggest search engine in the world behind it, Google. This is what separates Google plus, as a social media platform, from Facebook. Google is so darn huge that we don’t even use the phrase search engine anymore.  I don’t search, I FREAKIN’ Google. I haven’t searched something since back in the 90’s when those now obscure search engines like; Looksmart, Infoseek and AskJeeves were around. WE ALL FREAKIN’ GOOGLE NOW, we DO NOT search.

Google in all of it’s greatness has been “on to something” since the introduction of Google Plus and they have, in their own Google Greatness kind of way molded this platform into a platform that shouldn’t be ignored.  There have been many subtle changes to Google and Google plus since they pushed the social search platform out to the masses.

Initially Google plus wasn’t much to look at with its small narrow banner and boring look, but the layout has been tweaked a few times to create a much better-looking page. The last few tweaks consisted of the banner change and a full layout change.

There were outward changes to the Google plus platform but most of the changes were behind the scenes with Google and very gradual. These are the changes that will benefit businesses most.

  • The integration of all Google Services
  • Uniform sign on
  • Personalized search results
  • Google places merging into Google Local
  • Blogger ability to be shared easily on Google+ Pages
  • Blogger becoming a much more relevant blogging platform
  • Google+ and team up with Zagat
  • Finally, the push toward social search


In essence there has almost been a full integration of all Google Services with Google Plus at most and at the very least these services greatly compliment Google plus.  Any way you look at it, the integration of these services with Google plus creates an avenue in which shared information meets search. SOCIAL SEARCH.

Social Search is something that Wajam tried but never was able to move forward as successfully as Google will. Also Facebook tried to play the social search game with Bing. We all know how that worked out. Besides there really cool TV commercials, no one really gives a poop about Bing because they are really kinda’ sorta’ irrelevant in the search game. Or I should say in the Google Domination Game.

Google plus is the platform, now that it is merging all of the Google services, will be a pioneer and will dominate Social Search. An avenue where social results will play a role in search results. Oh wait, that’s happening now.

Take a look at the graphic below of an image that I posted to Google plus that displayed in Google search results, for a company that I represent in the digital marketing space.

 

THIS is Social Search, THIS is Google plus
THIS is Social Search, THIS is Google plus

 

THIS is Social Search, THIS is Google plus and THIS is why you are seriously cheating yourself if you do not have your company page on Google Plus.

If you have any comments, good, bad, ugly or indifferent you can reach me on Google Plus, Twitter and Facebook. Circle Me and Follow me!

Enhanced by Zemanta

It’s A Brand New World, It’s Mobile And Is Your Organization Ready?

Mobile
Just a few years ago people were feeling a sense of urgency to get a very basic web presence up and running. Now companies that panicked in creating that very basic website now have bigger issues if they have not moved beyond updating that website.

 

Organizations not only have to keep up with all of the changes with web creation vs content management systems, they now have to integrate mobile into the mix. With the integration of mobile platforms, organizations must be able to adapt marketing strategies for mobile while keeping up with the many changes that go along with those platforms.

 

It is a brand new world, that world is fast moving, powerful and can literally fit in your pocket. We are living in a world driven by mobile technology and users that need to have an ongoing source of information all the time and at their fingertips drive this. This is GREAT for people like me that are driven by technology, that have embraced this super quick moving technology but for businesses it can be tough keeping up. Especially if your organization is NOT technology focused.

 

So, not only do organizations have to adapt to mobile technology they MUST see that the dynamic that pushed the change are the people that are utilizing these technologies. PEOPLE are the driving force behind the change, they consume information differently, and they NEED to have information at their fingertips. So since organization MUST adapt their business strategy to incorporate mobile technology they must also understand that people have also changed. This understanding will help in visualizing the future sales and marketing strategies of their organizations.

 

At one time people were fine with consuming content by way of traditional sources such as newspapers,  radio, television and other printed materials. NOW there’s a wave of people that have limited interest in those forms of media. These are the people that are driving the super quick change and this is a huge demographic that organizations must adapt their content for and recognize that these people are the population that are driving the change.

 

Mobile technologies are growing at a quicker rate than any technology in history. Take a look at the infographic below to give you the what, when, how and why of this growth and what you need to do to adapt your organizational structure to capitalize from this growth.

 

 

Infographic Source:  InternetService.net Infographic Source:  InternetService.net  

Enhanced by Zemanta

Digital Marketing: Targeting Your Audience [Infographic]

Digital Marketing

 

Digital Marketing will be used to some degree for practically every marketing campaign moving forward. Whether we go with a campaign that includes video, slides or social media channels, digital marketing now is a huge aspect of marketing now.  One of the most important things we can do when deciding which digital marketing channel that we utilize is deciding which platform(s) may target our audience best. This is becoming increasingly more important with so many digital marketing channels available now.

 

If we want to be successful in our Digital Market campaigns it is very important to stay abreast of all of the channels but also to be aware that all channels do not fit the needs of all audiences. For instance Pinterest is primary geared toward a female demographic so if we are marketing services that are geared mostly toward men, this may not be the ideal platform to use.

 

Take a look at the Infographic below to give you an idea of HOW to target the proper digital marketing channel for your target audience.

Digital Marketing: Targeting Your Audience
Digital Marketing: Targeting Your Audience

Please Include Attribution to InternetServiceProviders.org With This Graphic

Enhanced by Zemanta

Up ↑

Mobilizing Ideas

Activists and Scholars Debate Social Movements and Social Change

Asher Edelman

Investor and Art Collector

John Laurits

Insurgent journalism. Poetry. Weaponized Mathematics.

niki1k

Just another WordPress.com site

Attila Ovari

Loving Life and Inspiring Others

toughlovetrain

t. t. thomas /// staying alive while getting there

Carefree Maroon

"Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare." - Audre Lorde

Wausau News

Health and Freedom News

%d bloggers like this: