Inbound Marketing & 3rd Generation of Websites: Part 2

In part I we delved into the early stages of websites, how they begin, their evolution and where they are heading today. From a business perspective, sites have seemingly gotten smarter, and the potential to utilize them for growth and lead generation is amazing. I like to think of a website as having a salesperson working for you 24/7/365. No vacation, no sick days and a constant ability to draw in fresh prospects. Sure there’s upkeep and in this article we are going to get our hands dirty with the foundation principles of Inbound Marketing. What exactly is Inbound Marketing?

Much like many people asked what social media was a mere few years ago, the term inbound marketing is not part of the mainstream vernacular, yet.

Inbound marketing is the process of drawing customers and prospects to you, instead of you seeking them via outbound techniques, like direct mail or cold calling. Oftentimes, these traditional methods are unwelcome and interrupt people without their permission. Inbound uses a combination of methods that position a business to be found when the prospect wants to find you. This is a much different idea, and simple at it’s core. Think of it like this: If you were watching your favorite TV show on DVR, and suddenly thought, “Hey, I need a new vacuum” and a vacuum commercial came on, you wouldn’t skip it. It was there when you wanted it there, not when the advertiser would force you to watch it.

Mind you the concept is not new, and the term Inbound Marketing has been around for many years, created by Hubspot, who is at the forefront of inbound marketing software and education. (full disclosure, my agency Soul NYC is a Hubspot Partner).

For businesses looking to redesign their website to be 3rd generation, there are some key elements to consider to set it up properly for Inbound Marketing. Your website is the major component, but external factors also can come into play. 1. You must have a blog. This is a must. The cornerstone of inbound marketing is producing interesting and relevant content on a regular basis. A website with a blog, gives a business the opportunity to broadcast at will. Blog content, besides providing useful information for your audience, also gives the search engines more opportunity to find your site. Continually adding to your blog adds pages to your site, and that fresh content is actually considered differently by Google and other search engines. Recent changes to search algorithms give more weight to fresher content. “Google’s aim is to include recency and freshness when determining relevance.”

  1. But what do you write about? Think about the things your customers ask you over and over again. These are great fuel for blog articles, and will be the types of things people will search for. Make a list of at least a dozen potential titles, so you have somewhere to start. Try to schedule posting at least one blog article a week, if not more. Make sure your content and titles are SEO friendly, which leads us to…
  2. Optimize Everything SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a key component is setting up your website for inbound marketing. It’s one of the most powerful things you can do to drive traffic to your site. It is important that the page titles are used properly. We often see the name of the company only on every page title, or just a simple one word description of the page content. The title should include important keywords and other information, like location that can help to return better results on search. These title tags show up in the browser, search engine results and many social media sites use that title tag as the link when posted. Example: Primary Keyword – Secondary Keyword | Brand Name 2 In addition it is good practice to link keywords within the body of your website content and blog posts to other pages on your site. Remember to write your content for readers, but consider the terms or keywords that they might be looking for. As always make sure that content is relevant to your audience and useful. Stuffing it with keywords over and over for the hell of it will make it unreadable and Google doesn’t like that either! These are just a few of the many things that affect SEO on your site. Do some research or discuss with your web design agency about properly structuring your site for SEO. There are also practices for Offsite SEO that are equally important. As we’re talking about fine tuning your website for Inbound Marketing, we will save that for another article.
  3. Integrate Social Media Social Media can work on many fronts. It can help you build presence and audience external to your website and position you as a knowledgeable leader in your field. In terms of your website, social can be used to draw people back to your content when you post it on the channels that you choose to use. It also is a way to spread that content. The larger your audience is on social, the wider your potential reach is. So post often and with relevancy. Share and retweet other people’s content as well. It’s just good practice to do so, and will always lead to reciprocal sharing of your content. On your site, implement tools to make sharing easy. Give site visitors the opportunity to like, share, tweet and email without leaving your pages by using social share buttons.
  4. Create Clear Calls To Action Once you’ve done the work to get visitors through your site through blogging, SEO and social, now what? You want to speak to them directly. A call to action helps to do that by giving them a specific action to take. These can be catered to the different types of people who buy your services by creating “buyer personas.” This differs for every business and usually there are several types of them. Regardless of the specifics, your call to action (CTA) should be written and designed in a manner that will incite a response. Some examples: Start Your Free Trial Today Call for a FREE Consulation Download our Ebook on XYZ Tell them clearly what you want them to do. A good CTA is explicit, concise and stands out on your page. Place them on pages where people wind up from search and social, like your homepage, blog, and services pages. You should have multilple CTA’s to use that are specific to the page or content the viewer is looking at. Then link those CTA’s to landing pages…
  5. Use Landing Pages to Convert Visitors to Leads This is where the magic happens. A good landing page is written to reinforce the offer of your CTA. It should describe the benefits of the offer and again incite an action. Common practice on landing pages is to remove all buttons and links, leaving the user with just the form that you will use to capture their info and register them as a lead. Once the form is completed, the user is typically sent an email with a link to download the offer or confirming receipt of their information and the next steps you will take. Here are 7 Tips to Landing page success from Search Engine Watch 3

    1) Have a Clear and Emphasized Call to Action
    2) Align Your On-Page Message and Call-to-Action With Your Off-Page Promise
    3) Simplify Design and Reduce Text
    4) Use Images Judiciously
    5) Show Brand Validation
    6) Enable Sharing and Highlight Social Validation
    7) Test, Test, Test

  6. Analyze & Measure Everything The foundation for all inbound marketing efforts is analytics. You have to know where your traffic sources are coming from, what they’re looking at, and whether or not they are engaged with your content. This requires robust software to be installed on your website.

Google Analytics is a start but it doesn’t offer the full suite of measurement tools needed to effectively get the job done.

Good tools will track and measure many important bits of information that will allow you to continually improve your inbound marketing game. Knowledge is power, and the right platform will provide you all of the insights needed to craft better optimized content, stronger CTA’s and landing pages, as well as gain valuable insight about who is hitting your site. Leads and Conversions are also recorded and data can be tracked and compared over time.

This constant measurement allows us as marketers to improve our efforts while the customer or business owner has real data on what is being done and how that relates to ROI.

Final Thoughts…

Inbound Marketing, is a worthwhile, proven approach that can create a steady flow of traffic and leads when executed properly. If you’re considering a website redesign, ask your developer or agency about how you can implement features in your new website to facilitate this. As always make sure that the approach is right for your business. If you decide to go it alone and are not capable or writing and producing content in a timely manner, it may not be a fit. You can seek out assistance from a qualified professional or agency so that you get the most out of inbound marketing.

Sources:

About Tommy Spero

Tommy Spero ( @tommyspero ) is the Principal and Creative Director of Soul NYC (www.soulnyc.com) , a branding, web design and inbound marketing agency that helps companies large and small use design and technology to grow their businesses. Tommy drives the vision of the agency, with over 14 years working in the design and interactive space. His experience working with some of the worlds biggest companies, like American Greetings, Sony Music, VH1, Showtime and Novartis, gives him unique insight on how small and medium businesses can succeed through the use of branding and technology. His design work has been featured multiple times in the LogoLounge series of books by Rockport Press, as well as appearing on television and all across the web.

Why B2B Marketers Need to Act More Like B2C Marketers

Paul Dunay on Marketing Made Simple TV

In this show, sponsored by Eloqua (with a great content offer of the Real World Marketing Syllabus by Aberdeen. Download it with this link or the button in the show), Paul Dunay, VP of Global Marketing at Maxymizer, shares five ways B2B Marketers need to start acting more like B2C Marketers (Click the link to read Paul’s article at BtoBOnline.com.) in this interview with Jeff Ogden of Find New Customers. Here are the five things in B2B marketing that needs to emulate B2C Marketing.

  1. B2B website design is outdated. Needs to be designed for people, and not companies. (Case in point, when Find New Customers slashed words on its home page from 550 down to just 28, registrations of the flagship white paper, How to Find New Customers shot up by 500%! It works!)
  2. Start testing, seriously. Marketing needs a serious focus on testing
  3. Treat your content like a category. Get rid of the Resources tab and re-organize your content in approaches for people.
  4. Employ deeper search and sort capabilities.
  5. Allow product reviews. Welcome interaction with people. Let them share comments, like Amazon reviews.

We thank Paul for appearing on the show. You can follow him at @pauldunay on Twitter. And we also thank our other sponsors – Avitage (Great video content marketing firm), Communication Strategy Group (Brandtelling), Digital Ethos (non-profit marketing education) and Watchitoo (streaming media conferencing and the show platform.)

About Jeff Ogden

Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is the President of the B2B lead generation consultancyFind New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies dramatically improve revenue results by transforming the way they attract, engage and win new customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or sending an email to sales at findnewcustomers.com.

SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING & GRAPHIC DESIGN [OPINION]

INTRODUCTION

It is difficult to pin point the exact date or event that signaled the death of graphic design. It took place sometime around the turn of this century.

THE CAUSE

What was the cause? In two words, it was social media. There was little need for visual input in this new technology. Facebook, twitter and LinkedIn, the three most popular, relied on verbal communication.

In fact, a short hand of sorts evolved with twitter since the maximum was

140 characters. Texting was the biggest culprit. It qualifies as a foreign language to anyone over 50.

It seemed like things were pretty well covered by the newly developing 21st Century social media. But then, was it? Something started to happen.

WHAT HAPPENED NEXT

A new app came on the scene. Its name was Pinterest and it was all visual. It took the social media scene by storm. No one could figure out why or how but it skyrocketed to extraordinary popularity surpassing many of the ‘veteran’ social media apps.

In addition, Google bought YouTube, Facebook bought Instagram and Yahoo absorbed Flickr. Although these were image and video venues, their acquisitions certainly signaled a return or a move forward to reconciliation.

Social Media Marketing Graphic Design came about as the fusion of the best of both twentieth century design and twenty first century technology. The fusion creates a synergy that provides the best possible opportunity for businesses to promote themselves.

CONCLUSION

As a result, many Facebook and Google + pages are now outstanding. They provide invaluable information both visually and verbally. They use each tool to maximize their impact and reach. Here is one of my favorite pages. I think you will see how well visual and verbal elements work together in a way that neither could do alone.

 

About Alison Gilbert

Through decades as an entrepreneur, I developed ventures in over a half a dozen industries including HEALTH FOOD | GRAPHIC DESIGN | BUSINESS PROMOTION | HOLISTIC HEALTH | DECORATIVE PAINTING | SOCIAL MEDIA | PUBLIC SPEAKING | WRITING. Eventually under the umbrella of ALISON*S ART, INC, they evolved into the dba MARKETING BYTES, a hybrid company specializing marketing small business using social media marketing and traditional graphic design services. Currently retired, I am focusing on teaching social media marketing graphic design and visual journalism. I can be messaged through www.facebook.com/alisondgilbert and tweeted @MktngBytesMaven and @AlisonsArt.

Stop Using Social Media Now….Without a Plan (Part 2)

I wrote “Stop Using Social Media Now…Without a Plan”  blog in February of 2012.   Since then it became very clear to me that many businesspeople do not have a marketing plan for themselves or their businesses.  They “wing it” in terms of social media marketing and they continue to market without a method to track effectiveness or cost (time and money).

In today’s competitive marketplace people need to use their time, energy and resources effectively.  The business and marketing paradigm has changed.  Without a plan you are at a competitive disadvantage right from the start.

It is not only the time to rethink your marketing efforts but the time to make sure you have a viable program in place. If you do have a marketing plan, it’s time to revisit it.  What’s been working? What has not been working? Social media marketing and the overall digital media marketing activities need to be examined and new strategies implemented.

If you have never had a marketing plan, it would be wise to create one.  In addition to Digital Ethos there are many free resources online that talk about marketing plans for businesses.  Check out the National Federation of Independent Business http://www.nifb.com and the United States Small Business Administration www.sba.gov for ideas and information.

Your time is precious. Don’t waste it. Whether your business has one employee, 50 employees or 500, you need a marketing plan to establish goals for business growth.  The plan should outline the strategies you want to implement and the vehicles you need to use to reach your target audiences.  Include social media, but don’t focus 100 percent on it.  A plan that includes traditional marketing methods that has a mix of direct mail, SEO, networking, website, public speaking, advertising, networking and/or trade shows along with select social media vehicles will be most effective.

A marketing plan should be based on specific short- term and long-  term goals for your business.  For example, a short- term goal to improve branding might be to update your logo or create a tagline for your website and other social media vehicles as well as print materials.  This refreshed look will attract the attention of prospects as well as current customers.

When analyzing your marketing efforts, determine if social media efforts are delivering an ROI.  If not, look to other digital media possibilities, such as email blasts, direct mail with QR codes or personalized URLs.  Know the mind-set of your target audiences and your clients when exploring these options and consider how they will react to your marketing methods.  Do you want to use a soft marketing or passive approach? Do you want to use a direct approach, one in which you seek a response to an offer of some type.  Regardless, you must have a plan in place to make the effort worthwhile.

Let’s look at three traditional forms of marketing, each still viable in today’s marketplace, that if combined with social media tools, can improve the effectiveness of your marketing effort.

1. Trade Shows

Trade shows offer an excellent forum for meeting face to face with contacts and prospects.  Within your marketing plan include a trade show program with these three basic sections recommended by Trade Show Advisor www.trade-show-advisor.com

  1. Pre-Show Marketing,
  2. During Show Marketing,
  3. Post-Show Marketing and follow up.

You’ve must aggressively market to prospects before they arrive, fully engage them during the show, and promptly follow-up with them after the show to generate additional sales.

It is important to note: 80% of exhibitors do not follow up on sales leads they collect at trade shows. Many do not have a self-working system in place to consistently and automatically follow up with prospects and stay in touch with customers on a regular basis. http://www.growingmybiz.com/images/Trade_Show_Follow_Up_Article.pdf

2. Direct Mail.  Everyone and every business still have mail boxes and people do look at their mail.  There are many new ways to generate sales leads today, but direct mail remains one of the most powerful lead-generation tools.

Even successful online businesses are discovering that direct mail is essential for growth, since newer marketing tactics, such as SEO, social media, and email marketing, often have limitations because of the rapidly changing rules and technical issues involved.

http://www.marketingprofs.com/8/cheap-direct-mail-tools-generate-sales-leads-fast-rieck.asp

Direct mail allows you to reach individuals, firms and the target audiences you identify.  If you place one of the ugly black QR Code boxes (quick response) on your marketing materials you may be able to get more mileage out of this tried and true effort.  Use QR Codes to drive people to videos, social media sites and websites – they can even dial your phone number.  Consider using QRs to make your print documents come alive and connect with mobile device users.  While QR codes have not been super popular, they are catching on with more and more smartphone users. Data shows that almost 50 percent of all American adults own a smartphone.  Study show that over 100 million Smartphone users are projected by 2013. This will no doubt increase the use of QR codes significantly http://www.foliomag.com/2012/study-over-100-million-smartphone-users-projected-2013

3. Networking – Face to face relationship building still works.  People prefer to do business with people they know, like and trust and they get to know you through networking.

According to the website Businessballs.com business networking is an effective low-cost marketing method for developing sales opportunities and contacts, based on referrals and introductions – either face-to-face at meetings and gatherings, or by other contact methods such as phone, email, and increasingly social and business networking websites. http://www.businessballs.com/business-networking.htm

Whether a CEO of a large company or a sole practitioner accountant, you are already networking to some degree. Networking events are meant to facilitate business and professional relationships.  In order to get the most out of these events it is best to have a networking plan within a marketing plan. You do need to devise how you are going to meet and interact with new business contacts and grow these relationships.

LinkedIn is an excellent digital means for business-minded people to network effectively and to foster relationships.  Small businesses or individuals can use LinkedIn to tell their story, gain exposure, and create or enhance their business or personal brand, and be connected with hundreds, if not thousands, of individuals.  Card Munch, a business card scanner app on smart phones produced by LinkedIn, is another way to immediately capture contact information and connect with people and begin business relationships.  

To develop an effective marketing plan the elements which are appropriate for you to include will largely depend on your particular industry and circumstances.  However, you must be eager to explore ideas and be willing to implement new approaches to create a marketing plan that will not end up wasting your time and energy but instead will generate the ROI that you expect.  Don’t procrastinate; begin to develop your business marketing plan today. Remember, many of your competitors have marketing plans and they are using them to go after your clients and business prospects.

Sources:

About Bill Corbett Jr.

This article is provided by Bill Corbett, Jr., President of Corbett Public Relations, Inc., a leading media relations, social media and personal branding consulting firm. For more information, go to corbettpr.com or to his blog corbettprblog.com. He can be reached at wjcorbett@corbettpr.com or @wjcorbett.

Best Ways to Market to Different Generations

http://www.edupics.com/coloring-page-different-generations-i4588.html

Every successful business owner knows that marketing is the key to expanding a business and gaining new customers, but not all types of marketing are equally effective. Multiple marketing techniques exist; each of which are helpful for reaching different age demographics. Knowing which type of approach to use to target various generations is essential for a successful marketing campaign.

Youth

Children are easily targeted through television. Commercial advertising to young people during popular television shows can bring in sizeable revenues. The key is advertising during after school hours and on the weekends when children are most likely to be watching television. Another way of marketing to children is through strategic store displays and product placement. Noise and Bright Colors are always great ideas to catch their attention. Mobile apps are also a great way to reach children and generate familarity with a brand, Rovio’s Angry Birds is a great example of how mobile apps are reaching the youthful market.

Teenagers

When they are not in school, teenagers spend a lot of time on social networks. That means hours perusing Facebook and reading Twitter updates from friends. Every business — regardless of whether it is marketing to a teenage demographic — should have Facebook and Twitter accounts. This is an easy way to keep potential customers updated on special deals, sales and information pertaining to a particular business. Retailers, for example, can post pictures of the season’s new inventories, and Twitter is a viable way to respond directly to followers. One of the important aspects to consider is the right mix of organic marketing on the social networks with advertising models. Facebook is particularly useful remarketing specific ads to those teenagers that have already connected to your brand, product or service.

Young and Middle-Age Adults

Young and middle-age adults are one of the most profitable demographics for business owners. Marketing trends for this generation are directly connected to digital media. Online banner ads and pay per click marketing, for example, are profitable ways of reaching the millions of people who use the Internet to get their news, socialize with friends and conduct business. The introduction of remarking tools have made these even more effective as you can target audiences that already are familiar with the brand, product or service. One of the top things to consider is if remarketing is a part of the banner campaign and what that looks like compared to your standard banner campaigns.

Another increasingly popular way of marketing to young and middle-age adults is by using mobile marketing. Mobile marketing companies help business owners take advantage of the rising number of cell phone users who access the Internet using their Smartphone devices. Mobile marketing companies help serve business owners by teaching them which customers to target and how to gain the most financial return on their marketing investments. While mobile apps are great for youth, mobile SMS campaigns have also become very successful, with success rates in the high 90’s SMS is a must for targeting this generation.

Seniors and Baby Boomers

Senior citizens and baby boomers are less likely to take advantage of digital media. Traditional marketing methods are still the primary way of reaching senior citizens and baby boomers. For example, according to StateOfTheMedia.org, individuals over the age of 55 are significantly more likely to subscribe to newspapers than individuals under age 35. As of 2011, approximately half of Americans over age 55 and six in every ten Americans over age 65 read a newspaper on a daily basis. With this age range being the fastest growing user base on social sites it shouldn’t take long before they become a viable audience for other digital campaigns but for now you might find a higher rate of success with email marketing. While email is prone to low open rates, developing loyalty programs with email marketing can be extremely successful with the generational group.

Alex Nieland provides editorial on the mobile marketing industry. Mr. Nieland has written several publications relating to the latest tips, trends, and statistics within the mobile advertising sector.

About Guest Blogger

This article is a guest post provided by a third party, its content was added to Digital Ethos to help provide additional information for our readers and followers. While the Guest Blogger posts do not undergo the same scrutiny as Authors and lack sources, the content was reviewed and approved as valuable to our mission.

Google AdWords, Part 2 [Internship]

As you read in the Google Adwords part one, pay per click (PPC) is one of the options Google offers as an advertising feature. However, PPC is not the only feature. Cost Per Impression (CPI) is another online advertising tool that Google offers. CPI usually is in the form of a banner ad on a website and advertisers pay for every time their ad is displayed. CPI is different from PPC because CPI is only when the ad is displayed on a website, not clicked like PPC. Cost Per Mille (CPM) is the most common marketing practice used on the internet. CPM advertising is the way a marketer can be more certain about the revenue they generate from their website traffic. When the amount paid for every thousand earning impressions served, this is said to be CPM or CPI.

Some of Google Adwords advanced features include location options. In the previous Google Adwords article, it talked about setting your location to make your ads visible to a certain area. Advanced location options allow a marketer to reach people viewing pages about your targeted location. This will help because you will not only be seen in just your targeted area anymore. The only catch is that this feature is only available for certain campaign types that have “all features”. The good news is that you can switch your campaign type whenever you like.

Google had recently been trying out a new feature called Google Email Subscription Ads. This allows companies to buy ads that automatically fill in a newsletter slot. This allows users to sign up more easily for email subscriptions or other free newsletters. A cool feature on this allows your Google email address to be displayed next to your ad.

A new revolutionizing feature that Google Adwords set up is calling Pay Per Call (PPC). Pay Per Call is simply the process of an advertiser paying the publisher every time their phone number is clicked off a Google search page. This is another good way a marketer can establish their advertisements and see how their PPC option really works.

Google offers many different features for businesses to choose from. Google Adwords is a great beneficial step for your business to take. The set up is easy, and Google is kind enough to show you a step by step process. Even though Google is testing out some features, it’s easy to see that they are thriving and will go into good use.

Read: Google AdWords Part 1

Sources:

http://www.allbusiness.com/marketing/advertising-internet-advertising/2646-1.html#axzz29NUBY4iJ

http://support.google.com/adwords/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1722038

http://www.crunchbase.com/product/google-adwords-2

http://paypercallexchange.com/mobile-marketing/google-mobile-adwords/

 

The content in this article is part of Digital Ethos’s Digital Media Education in the Higher Education Internship Program, the content was created by @KaylaMarzo, a Student at Suffolk County Community college, intern at Digital Ethos.

About Digital Media Education Internship

Digital Media Education Internship Program is an outreach initiative for Digital Ethos.

Marc Ensign on Digital Business Hour


Marc EnsignMarc is an Internet Marketing geek specializing in search engine optimization, social media and digital design. His approach to success in search engine optimization and social media is based on embracing the rules as opposed to finding the temporary holes. While everyone else is looking for the easy way out, his methodology is based on putting in the work up front and building sustainable success. Matt Cutts from Google publicly called his strategy “solid” while those that he has worked with have actually benefited from the recent Google algorhythm updates. Marc has a blog where he writes a lot of nifty stuff around Internet Marketing, although he has been known to sneak something in there about his previous time spent as a professional musician. He used to be a fairly successful musician a few years ago…He performed on Broadway, recorded an album with R. Kelly and wrote a bunch of books. In everything Marc does, he tries to keep the language pretty geek-free to make sure that everyone can benefit from what he is speaking about.

The Path to Better Marketing Results: Laura Patterson and Julie Schwartz

Just Add Data | The Path to Better Marketing Results – Laura Patterson and Julie Schwartz on Marketing Made Simple TV

Welcome to Marketing Made Simple TV in High Definition!

ITSMA research shows that marketing organizations that leverage data in their strategic and tactical decision making have a business performance advantage. Data-savvy organizations are better able to improve their average time to revenue and decrease their sales costs per order dollar. But what does it take to be data-savvy?

Join show host Jeff Ogden with Laura Patterson of VisionEdge Marketing (https://www.visionedgemarketing.com/) and Julie Schwartz Senior Vice President, Research and Thought Leadership, ITSMA for a fascinating chat about the results of a study of B2B marketers.

You will gain insight into how you and your peers use marketing data, metrics, and analytics to inform marketing decisions, predict buyer behavior, improve marketing performance, and forecast trends.

Download the Revenue Performance Management – Demystified guide from Eloqua at http://bit.ly/RPMDemist or click the button in the show.

We thank Laura and Julie for appearing on this show, as well as sponsors such as Avitage, Digital Ethos, Communication Strategy Group and Eloqua. Marketing Made Simple TV premieres a new show every Thursday at noon ET/9am PT.

Love the show? Then we invite you to join the Marketing Made Simple TV Fan Club.

About Jeff Ogden

Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is the President of the B2B lead generation consultancyFind New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies dramatically improve revenue results by transforming the way they attract, engage and win new customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or sending an email to sales at findnewcustomers.com.

Content Marketing – in the Real World: Steve Farnsworth on Marketing Made Simple TV

In this episode of Marketing Made Simple TV, social media and content marketing expert Steve Farnsworth (@steveology) of Jolt Social Media (http://www.joltsocialmedia.com) shares tips about Content Marketing in the Real World.

Steve explains how content marketing is like teenage sex – everyone talks about it but almost no one is actually doing it. But he shares examples like the resort in Belize. After buying David Meerman Scott’s book, the New Rules of Marketing and PR, he signs up for Wordtracker.com and looks up keywords. Then he writes content for his blog using those keywords (like honeymoons and Mayan culture). While he used to buy ads, now he gets 80% of business opportunities from inbound marketing.

Steve also shares that “All companies are now media companies.” and advises companies to hire outside experts to help with content. Other examples include AMEX Open, Intel Free Press and the National Association of Realtors.

This show is sponsored by Eloqua and features a great offer. Click the link here or the button in the show to download The Grande Guide to Content Marketing.

About Jeff Ogden

Jeff Ogden (@fearlesscomp) is the President of the B2B lead generation consultancyFind New Customers. Find New Customers helps companies dramatically improve revenue results by transforming the way they attract, engage and win new customers. Contact Find New Customers by calling (516) 495-9350 or sending an email to sales at findnewcustomers.com.

Seth Godin’s “All Marketers Tell Stories” [Internship]

                Seth Godin made a valuable point when stating, “Marketing is about spreading ideas, and spreading ideas is the single most important output of our civilization.” Godin has made several other valuable points in his book, “All Marketers Tell Stories”. He focuses on a person’s “worldview” which is someone’s own rules, values, beliefs, and biases. Even though it is very tough to change someone’s worldview, it is possible with the correct kind of marketing.

                Worldviews are both beneficial yet tricky at the same time. Worldviews are the reason why our world is a diverse place. However, it is hard for a marketer to target so many people with different points of views. According to Godin, “Worldviews are the reason that two intelligent people can look at the same data and walk away with completely different conclusions.” Marketers have found a way “around” worldviews that allow them to still market their products or services. Marketers tell stories. “Consumers are used to telling stories to themselves and telling stories to each other, and it’s just natural to buy stuff from someone who’s telling us a story. People can’t handle the truth.” Seth Godin was one hundred percent right when he wrote this in his book. People cannot handle the truth, and they will do anything to go around it. In order for a marketer to truly succeed, which doesn’t happen often according to Godin, there are five steps that they need to follow.

                The first step in Godin’s “All Marketers Tell Stories” is “their worldview and frames got there before you did.” He explains that the world is full of all kinds of different people with different worldviews. If everyone was the same, marketing would be a piece of cake. However, that’s not the case. Marketers need to make their advertisements accustom to everyone and their different values, biases, and assumptions. Frames are also part of the big picture. They are elements of a story painted to leverage the worldview a consumer already has. If a marketer frames their story in terms of a person’s worldview, they will be heard and noticed.

                The second step Godin points out is “people notice only the new and then make a guess”.  He makes a great comparison to ideas and viruses. Viruses can spread through a community by jumping host to host. Scientists study how a host interacts with the virus. The same thing goes for an idea; ideas can spread through a community person to person. Instead of seeing how a host and virus interact, we try to understand how our brain responds to the ideas and inputs we encounter.

                The third step is “first impressions start the story”. People make judgments within a fraction of a second. A marketer needs to grab the attention of their audience as soon as they start telling the story or else they will lose the persons attention. A marketer should always start with something exciting and interesting, not boring. First impressions are always key.

                Godin’s fourth step in his book is “great marketers tell stories we believe.” First, you have to believe in your story, or else you will not come off believable. Sounding confident and knowing what you’re talking about will draw in a bigger audience. The story sells the product and pleases the customer.

                Finally, the last step is “marketers with authenticity thrive.” Godin said, “If you commit to a story and live that story, the contradictions will disappear.” No one likes a phony person because then no one will take their time to listen to your advertisement, or even buy your product or service. When a marketer is authentic, it shows, and people will stop and listen. People like hearing stories when it involves a shortcut, money, safety, fun, and belonging. These are all factors of their worldviews, and Godin said persuading someone to switch their worldview is the same as making him admit he was wrong. People hate admitting that they are wrong, and therefore will not listen to your story.  

                In the end, it doesn’t matter whether something is actually better or more efficient, what matters is what the consumer believes. As a marketer, it would be impossible to be noticed without studying your audience’s various worldviews. Products and services have gotten more and more complex, so there is a lot of teaching for marketers to do. Seth Godin’s “All Marketers Tell Stories” is a step in the right direction when you want to succeed as a marketer.

Sources:

http://www.sethgodin.com/sg/

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1591841003/permissionmarket

http://digitalethos.org/a-day-at-google-new-york-opinion/

 

The content in this article is part of Digital Ethos’s Digital Media Education in the Higher Education Internship Program, the content was created by @KaylaMarzo, a Student at Suffolk County Community college, intern at Digital Ethos.

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