8 things we learned from writing digital marketing blogs

1. Social Media presence and experience

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prior to writing a blog online, it is important to have some experience with social media platforms. Each social media platform is leveraged in a different way (Reddit vs. Twitter vs. Facebook as examples). It is a good idea to have existing social media accounts and access to existing online social networks.  More importantly, ensure you understand how audiences on each platform might react to your content and promotional efforts. A Reddit user may be more likely to engage with a targeted and specific post curated for their interests while a Facebook friend may be more likely to engage on broader messages in support of the friend’s blog.

2. Social Media strategy is key

 

 

 

 

 

As you head down the exciting path of writing a blog, it is important to not only have a content strategy, but also have a promotional strategy. The content strategy should outline the types of topics to write about and the social media platforms on which to post. A promotional strategy should identify the intended audiences  and how you expect to reach them via the social platforms.

As you develop your plan for building a great social media marketing blog, be thoughtful about your posting cadence (posting twice a week is a good start) and your subsequent promotional strategy (promote heavily immediately after you post to ensure your fresh content is delivered on time).

Without an initial strategy that outlines the topics of interest, the frequency of the posts, the promotional campaigns, and the target audiences, you may find it challenging to get enough people reading, following, sharing, liking and talking about your posts.

3. Identify a topic

 

 

 

 

 

 

Invest the time to identify a topic that is not only interesting to write about but also provides a connection to an attentive audience.   While you may think you have a great idea for your blog, if there aren’t enough people interested in the content you may not get anyone to read it.

4. Understand various blog types and select one

 

 

 

 

Before writing a blog, it is important to understand the various blog types such as: Listicle, Click Bait, Op Ed, or a Product Review. Once the blog types and formats are understood, you should then select the appropriate format for the topic.  For example, you can write a product review on something of interest and relevance to you as the writer.  This will result in more honest and engaging content that can serve to connect with a targeted audience.  Another approach is to choose a topic that is of interest to the intended audience.  You may decide that a Click Bait post with nostalgic images or humorous content may be an easier way to promote to a broader audience as a means to drive traffic to your blog.

5. Writing a blog can be time consuming

 

 

 

 

 

Don’t underestimate the amount of time it takes to research, write, review and edit a blog before posting it.  To demonstrate this, consider a blog that includes original video content.  While videos can be an effective way to drive traffic and session duration, they are also very time consuming to produce.  Effective videos require frequent editing, re-shoots, voice over sessions, more editing and then copy overlay.  Finally, you put it all together, post it to your site and promote it to the masses.  While it can be fun, don’t underestimate the time commitment needed to pull it off!

6. Find audiences to drive traffic

 

 

 

 

 

With so many different channels available, deciding on the right platforms for promoting your message is an integral step in a successful campaign.  Email, Facebook, Reddit, Twitter, Instagram and Tumbler are a just a few of the options available and all have may seem to have benefits.

You might think that email is a great channel for promotion because you have lots of friends and family interested in your content.  However, you may find that people often don’t read blogs in their email as frequently as they check their Facebook, Twitter or Instagram accounts.

The trick is finding the right social media platform and the right audience to post and promote your blog.

7. Leverage Google Analytics

 

 

 

 

Through Google Analytics, identify the key metrics that allow you to monitor your blog site’s performance and measure how well you are reaching the intended audience. Some examples of effective metrics include: number of sessions, bounce rate, average session and duration. Number of sessions measures the number of visitors to your site or campaign (i.e how effectively are you driving traffic).  Average session duration provides you with a measurement of how long on average people are viewing your blogs (i.e is your content interesting to the reader). Bounce rate represents the action of leaving the site immediately after clicking on a campaign (i.e is your content relevant to the visitor).  To measure how effectively your targeted audience is engaging with your blog, you want your bounce rate to be as low as possible.

8. Adjust your approach if it doesn’t drive enough traffic

 

 

 

 

There are times when it seems like the topic is relevant to many audiences and the execution of the promotional strategy seems correct. However, something didn’t work. It could have been an issue with the blog title, the blog content, the target audience or the promotion. When this occurs, you have an opportunity to make adjustments to the blog, the social media platform and/or the promotional campaign to a more appropriate audience.  If you can learn from your missteps and quickly address any issues, you can develop into a more effective social media marketing blogger.

Good Luck!

Free Social Media Tools to Try in 2018

As we covered in Just Because You’re a Millennial Doesn’t Mean You’re a Social Media Wizard,  social media is ever changing and so are the tools we use to express ourselves. Here are some outstanding free tools that set your social media presence to the next level.

Crello

Usage: Create new images for your web and social media presence. It has thousands of templates and millions of images to choose from.

Features: Animate designs with Crello for free. Whether you have a design team or not, faster is better.

Fastory

Usage: This is an editing tool to create stories on Instagram and Snapchat, allowing you to add text and upload videos. You can make stories in advance, email them to yourself, and post them when it’s convenient for you.

Features: Keeping a publishing schedule is a challenge. I like this tool to prep stories in advance.

Botletter

Usage: Are you sending blogs and newsletters on Facebook Messenger? Are you running a campaign with a strong Facebook presence? Now you can send up to 1000 messages a month for free.

Features: Like many new marketing tools, you can track and review your performance in the same place.

For additional reading, check out:

Digital Marketing Tips for Digital Natives

Gifs and Memes: The New Art of Marketing

 

 

Does Google know your last purchase?

Google knows all your past purchases. Most of our accounts (banks or utilities) are tied to our email addresses. Our email addresses are tied to our friends and family’ addresses. Google has everything it needs to predict and advertise your next product using your social network, your likes and your previous purchases. I would say Google is pretty good at providing you with your potential needs or wants for most items. I associate it to brainwashing.

Lately, I have been getting a lot of shoes Ads from Amazon. I’m not a shoes person and definitely not looking for them on the internet with Amazon. I prefer the in person experience at a shoes store. After the first exposure, I tried to ignore these ads; however, after the 3rd time, I decided to click on this “Amazing deals you don’t want to miss” and “Deals end on Sunday”. I eventually gave in and made a sample purchase to test out the process.

Google use the right marketing strategies to ensure they get new customers. Their marketing strategies are effective at least to peak their consumers’ interests.

My coworker shared Google advertised to him personal private jet. I can probably guess he made some high dollar purchases or that someone from this network purchased a private jet!

I notice Google hasn’t suggested me a house. Maybe they haven’t figured out the right house because of the complexity of other factors or that real estate companies haven’t paid for the data. Until then, our generation will have a lot of stuff but not a lot of land.

Are you making any of these marketing mistakes?

1. Failure to Create a Strategy with Measurable Goals

 

 

 

 

 

 

In digital marketing, a well-defined strategy is not only the key to establishing a strong direction, but it is also the impetus for aligning valuable content with a target audience. If a digital marketing strategy is missing, both the customers and employees of the organization will not understand the intent of the digital marketing message. Thus, the purpose and value would be lost. Therefore, it is imperative that an organization creates and refines their digital marketing strategies and goals to help them reach their target audience, measure their results, achieve organizational growth and remain competitive in the market.

2. Targeting the Wrong Audience

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When starting a new company one of the most important things that are going to determine whether you make it or not is how you will market your product to the consumer, and who you target.  If you target the wrong consumer segment, it could destroy your company because consumers will not be attracted to your product.  If you target the right consumer, your company could be the next Coca-Cola or Disney.

3. Not Having a User Friendly Website

 

 

 

 

Did you know that having a website that an unfriendly website design will not only reduce traffic to the website, but it also results in a negative perception of the brand? It is true. So, what does it mean to create a “user-friendly” website? For a website to be user-friendly, it must have a minimum of the following 3 key features:
    1. Speed: Customers expect web pages to load in 3 seconds or less. If the response rate is slower than 3 seconds, the customer may click away from the site.
    2. Design: The design of the website must be intuitive and easy navigated by someone who is new to the site.
    3. Mobile Compatibility: The website must be compatible with mobile devices.

4. Marketing Across Too Many Social Platforms

 

 

 

 

 

 

Specific targeted marketing audiences likely don’t spend time on every social platform.  Allocating your resources to the right platform is therefore critical to ensuring your marketing efforts aren’t spread too thin.  Start by studying and understanding which social platforms are primarily used by your audience and target the message to the three of four platforms that most closely align with the audience.  Keep it narrow and focused for optimal results.

5. Ignoring Negative Feedback

Business on social media helps connect business directly with customers. A business can expect positive or negative comments. All positive and negative feedback is visible to the public.  Avoid the temptation  to delete or ignore the comments.  Business should address the negative feedback as quickly as possible. Customers will follow the company’s response and judge how quickly  and effectively they respond. Customers will search for feedback prior to purchase. Social ratings are available in Google review. A company can turn a complaint into a positive experience.

6. Not Leveraging Your Data

 

 

Effective marketing campaign managers measure performance through data, research, analysis and other performance tools.  Social media marketing requires a similar attention to the data to drive improved results.  Social marketers can improve their performance by leveraging Google Analytics or the tools provided by the social media platform.  Leverage the data to drive improved results.

The Future of Paid Social Media Marketing: Kinda Creepy, but Also Smart

Professional Development Series

Interview Spotlight:

Nick Footer: Founder and CEO of Intuitive Digital 

We had the pleasure of interviewing Willamette MBA alumni Nick Footer about the continuously emerging market of paid social media advertising, how he got to where he is and where he thinks it’s going.

Tell us about your previous work experience and how you got to where you are at today.

So, way back in the day – by this I mean 2006 – when I was in college, Facebook was the new shiny object. I just geeked out on it; I thought it was the coolest thing since sliced bread. Along with a few other networks you might have heard about, like Myspace, I spent as much time trying to figure out and learn how a business could use these networks to get in front of consumers. Obviously, during that time the networks weren’t designed or optimized for this, but I still did a bunch of my undergrad work on social media, then went to agencies and did everything I could there.

Advertising really started on a lot of the channels like Facebook when they realized they’d need to make money to go public. They started focusing on ad capabilities and all of it was terrible. FB ripped off the same model forum sites had been using, just a bunch of banner ads down the side. The entire strategy was: get a bunch of eyeballs and people will pay. Paid advertising was pretty shitty when it started. It’s gotten better, but in large part, all they’ve done is a better job of hiding the fact you’re looking at an ad, coupled with better targeting. Actually, Facebook has bought a bunch of different companies just to feed in consumer data to improve targeting accuracy. It’s kinda creepy, but also smart.

Like IBM did by buying insurance companies to feed the health records data to Watson? Yes, exactly like that.

What’s changed from an agency perspective?

Five or six years ago, I wouldn’t recommend paid social to any of our clients. But I was also working with small businesses with small budgets so there were better places to spend their marketing dollars. Today I recommend paid social to almost all our clients. It still has problems, but with the additional targeting capabilities, you can get a good return on investment.

When would you not use paid social?

Facebook sometimes isn’t the best for super B2B. LinkedIn has gotten better but you need a large target audience both geographically and in volume to eventually get to the right people.

What challenges do you face in posting quality content within your field?

The biggest challenge is what used to work 6 months ago doesn’t work today and what’s working today won’t work in 6 months. The industry is evolving faster than it ever has and I think this will continue for at least the next couple of years.

Can you give us an example of this?

Sure, let’s stick with Facebook as an example. Content posts where you’re just sharing linked content with a blurb to drive web traffic specifically is dying.

What’s working now is content that’s literally engaging with or trying to get responses with your audience. So actual comments back and forth. This increases its edge rank and helps it show up organically in people’s feeds.

Does that work when you’re asking consumers to engage with a brand?

 It’s definitely more difficult as a brand. We’ve seen some success with letting people know who the social team behind the brand are. It’s not faceless IBM, it’s these three people managing IBM’s Facebook account.

Other than the obvious mechanic differences, what other important ways do you think paid social differ from organic?

The difference for us is that is that we do all our testing organically. Once we find the most engaging content, that’s the stuff we then use in our paid campaigns. This has a lower cost for our clients because we’re cherry picking the best.

Also, you always need to think about who you’re targeting. Targeting your potential customers is what paid content is for. With organic, you’re targeting people who’ve already liked your page.

Let’s talk about the difference in B2B and B2C.

In B2C providing specific offers, usually, a discount code or coupon continues to work well. We have an online pet store that’s just murdered it on Facebook. In large part, it’s because they’re offering 10% discounts to people who’ve liked their page.

B2B isn’t rocket science either. It’s normally trying to provide thought leadership and content. We’ve done a lot of white papers and also had great success with getting people signed up for video drip campaigns. You’ve got to make it easy to engage with the content. We make sure we have a really low risk for signing up; all that’s required is an email and these are short videos, 90 seconds and you’re out. We’re also doing Youtube and other remarketing based on them.

 What do you think is coming with paid social?

For me, I hate interruption marketing, but that’s still really the only way that we’ve been able to do it. I see a continuation of that through in-stream video, specifically geotargeted and very specific to content. So, if someone snaps a video and says, “I’m outside of this club!”, people who open that up will get a specific ad from that club. It’s going to get creepier in terms of AI knowing what we’re saying, where we are and who’s viewing it through crawling the voice content or the image. To me that’s really going to get pushed is our line of privacy.

Obviously, there are also other smaller platforms. If you have a specific demographic or psychographic which aligns, these can be really effective. There’s probably going to be more of those as Facebook trends down. This opens up some places in the future.

What’s your favorite thing about social media marketing?

What I love most about social media is the ability to communicate directly with your end consumer. Prior to social, you had to pay hundreds of thousands (if not more) to have the type of communication you can now have organically through the internet.

If you liked Nick’s Q&A Interview Check Out Other Posts in the Series: 

Q&A with Andrew Hickey: Ten Top Tips on Linkedin Marketing

Elon Musk teases new master plan for Tesla

Tesla’s first master plan in 2006 eventually became the Model S. What does Elon Musk have up his sleeve now that he’s hinted at a second big plan? A connected home with SolarCity? A Tesla truck? Teslas that pick you up like Uber?

Tesla’s first master plan in 2006 eventually became the Model S. What does Elon Musk have up his sleeve now that he’s hinted at a second big plan? A connected home with SolarCity? A Tesla truck? Teslas that pick you up like Uber?

Sourced through Scoop.it from: money.cnn.com

Sometimes when genius first shows up, it looks like insanity. After a short time later, people wish they had thought of it.