Archive for the ‘Marketing’ Category

Source: http://hosting.ber-art.nl/content-seo-search-engine-visibility/?_tmc=kpxfdSmuUhNezJMz8FElSNGgr8G80BI5H7vUuIyz6Cs

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the visibility of a website or a web page in search engines via the “natural” or un-paid (“organic” or “algorithmic”) search results.

In general, the earlier (or higher ranked on the search results page), and more frequently a site appears in the search results list, the more visitors it will receive from the search engine’s users. SEO may target different kinds of search, including image search, local search, video search, academic search, news search and industry-specific vertical search engines.

Explores how content is key to search engine visibility on why is Content Good for SEO #Inforgraphic

 

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/biggest-pr-disasters-of-2012-2012-11?op=1

From corporate social fails to “pink slime” scandals to Apple launching a widely hated mapping feature, 2012 was filled with epic PR disasters.While many of the public relations nightmares were due to typical company failings, others were unique to the digital era.

All it takes is a single employee’s bad tweet — like a Burger King staffer standing in a tub of lettuce — to send corporate headquarters into damage control mode.

We’ve collected 10 of the worst PR disasters of the year.

10. KitchenAid tweeted about Obama’s dead grandma.

10. KitchenAid tweeted about Obama's dead grandma.

During one of the presidential debates, KitchenAid tweeted to its 24,000 fans that “Obamas gma even knew it was going 2 b bad! ‘She died 3 days b4 he became president’. #nbcpolitics”.

KitchenAid immediately deleted the quote and tweeted an apology.

A spokesperson said that “The tasteless joke in no way represents our values at KitchenAid, and that person won’t be tweeting for us anymore.”

9. American Apparel exploits Hurricane Sandy.

9. American Apparel exploits Hurricane Sandy.

American Apparel

People were outraged when American Apparel used Hurricane Sandy — a storm that killed over 100 people and initially left 8 million without power — as an excuse to sell merchandise.

The retailer were offered a 20 percent off sale if they typed “SANDYSALE” in the online checkout “in case you’re bored during the storm.”

American Apparel decided to ignore the PR disaster and didn’t apologize.

Gap, on the other hand, also did a Sandy sale and then tweeted apologies for offending people.

8, The NRA’s magazine posted an insensitive tweet after the Aurora shooting.

8, The NRA's magazine posted an insensitive tweet after the Aurora shooting.

Hours after the nation learned about the tragic Aurora shooting that left 12 people dead at a late night showing of “The Dark Night Rises,” American Rifleman, a magazine for the NRA, tweeted: “Good morning, shooters. Happy Friday! Weekend plans?”

The tweet went up at 9:20 am EST and was taken down three hours later.

A spokesman for the NRA stated, “A single individual, unaware of events in Colorado, tweeted a comment that is being completely taken out of context.”

PR lesson: be careful with pre-scheduled tweets.

7. Apple Maps was so bad, the CEO had to issue a public apology.

7. Apple Maps was so bad, the CEO had to issue a public apology.

When Apple banished Google Maps from the iPhone in September, consumers were concerned.

Apple’s own maps app turned out to be riddled with errors, and didn’t even include public transportation mapping.

CEO Tim Cook had to issue a public apology, conceding that the maps “fell short” before suggesting users download competitors’ products from the Apps store. Cook specifically called out Bing, MapQuest, or going to Nokia and Google’s website.

The product manager who oversaw the maps team was fired months later.

6. The Internet exposes a Burger King employee who stood in tubs of lettuce.

In July, a Burger King employee thought that it would be a fun idea to post pictures on 4Chan of him standing (shoes on) in two large tubs of lettuce. The caption read: “This is the lettuce you eat at Burger King.”

Within minutes, other 4Chan members tracked down the culprit.

Burger King addressed the PR disaster in a public statement regarding the chain’s “zero-tolerance policy against any violations such as the one in question” and fired three employees for the incident.

5. A Taco Bell employee tweeted a picture of himself urinating on a plate of nachos.

Even though the Indiana worker assured people that the plate was going to be thrown out anyway, Taco Bell dealt with the crisis immediately by firing him.

4. Chick-fil-A’s president bashes gay marriage.

Chick-fil-A caused quite a stir when its president publicly came out against gay marriage.

Dan Cathy, who also serves as the COO, told “The Ken Coleman Show”: “I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at Him and say, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage.’ I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we have the audacity to define what marriage is about.”

This caused a national outcry — some for, and others against. Citizens held boycotts and kiss-in protests at local chains, and mayors threatened to ban the chain from their cities. (Which mayors can’t actually do.)

More controversy arose when Jim Henson Co. slammed Chick-fil-A for its public stance, and then Jim Henson toys were prematurely pulled from the chicken chain.

3. “Pink Slime” is discovered.

In March, ABC News released a series of reports raising concern over a hamburger ingredient dubbed  “pink slime,” a mechanically separated and disinfected beef product officially known as lean finely textured beef.

People began petitioning to get supermarkets, restaurants, and schools to all stop carrying the slime, even though various consumer experts said it was safe. This PR disaster led to massive layoffs.

BPI eventually filed a lawsuit against ABC for $1.2 billion for allegedly making about 200 “false and misleading and defamatory” statements about the product.

2. McDonald’s #McDStories Twitter campaign gets out of control.

McDonald’s January Twitter campaign asked readers to tweet their own special #McDStories.

The problem: people used the hashtag for horror stories like: “Fingernail in my BigMac” and “Hospitalized for food poisoning after eating McDonalds in 1989. Never ate there again and became Vegetarian. Should have sued.”

McDonald’s had no way to control what people tweeted, and all the stories showed up whenever anyone clicked the hashtag.

McDonald’s social media director Rick Wion emailed BI that:

While #meetthefarmers was used for the majority of the day and successful in raising awareness of the Supplier Stories campaign, #mcdstories did not go as planned. We quickly pulled #mcdstories and it was promoted for less than two hours.

Within an hour of pulling #McDStories the number of conversations about it fell off from a peak of 1600 to a few dozen. It is also important to keep those numbers in perspective. There were 72,788 mentions of McDonald’s overall that day so the traction of #McDStories was a tiny percentage (2%) of that.

With all social media campaigns, we include contingency plans should the conversation not go as planned. The ability to change midstream helped this small blip from becoming something larger.

1. Penn State covers up the Sandusky scandal.

1. Penn State covers up the Sandusky scandal.

AP

Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky was charged and later convicted of repeated counts of child molestation while at Penn State.

Although the scandal was unveiled in 2011, the university felt the full fallout in 2012 when the Freeh report stated that Joe Paterno and the administration covered up Sandusky’s abusesMajor companies pulled sponsorships of the program.

Part of the PR disaster was due to Penn State’s initial difficulty addressing the problem. Pulitzer-winning stories in The Patriot-News of Harrisburg initially uncovered the scandal in March 2011. But Penn State remained tightlipped. PR firm Ketchum was hired in November of 2011, and the school hired Edelman and La Torre for crisis management in April 2012. The school pledged to spend $208,000 a month for 12 months on PR support, but the damage was done.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/biggest-pr-disasters-of-2012-2012-11?op=1#ixzz2FJWojtAy

 

Posted on 12th December, by Peter Marino in SEO, Small Business Marketing, Social Media Marketing, Web Design

social mediaSocial media has grown from a curiosity to an integral piece of corporate strategy in the space of only a few years. Nearly overnight, companies have brought on whole teams of specialists to craft effective social media strategies and manage multiplying numbers of social media accounts. Companies are hungry for better social media tools to engage their constituents. Below is a list of five features key to delivering on a social media strategy.

1) Scheduling
Social media doesn’t sleep, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have to! Ensure your social media management tool of choice allows you to schedule messages in advance. So even if you’re in New York, you can schedule messages out to your customers in Tokyo during their workday.

If you want to take scheduling to the next level, look for a tool that offers the ability to schedule large batches of messages at once. This will be a super useful time-saver when it comes to managing campaigns or contests that require heavy messaging around a certain period of time.

2) Geo
When it comes to interacting with your customers, those in different locations may have different needs, speak different languages or follow different trends. You’re going to want a tool that optimizes your searches and filters your searches by language to help you curate relevant content for different demographics.

3) Keywords
Social media is also an effective way for businesses to keep their finger on the pulse. Setting up keywords or search streams provide insight into what is trendy among your customers. This can help you develop a marketing strategy that focuses on customer’s lifestyles and personal preferences.

Keywords are useful for keeping track of competitors’ activities but they’re also useful for tracking brands that are complementary to your offering. If your product is often purchased in conjunction with another product, keep an eye on the complementary product’s social media activity to take advantage of promotions or recent sales, as these are potential leads ready to be converted.

4) Collaboration
It takes two to tango especially when it comes to being social. Collaboration is key when it comes to developing and executing an effective social media campaign. Ensure your social media management tool enables you to seamlessly collaborate with your team to ensure you execute an integrated social media management strategy.

5) Reporting
Gone are the days of social media purely being about ‘building buzz.’ It is now a line item in budgets as companies invest resources in these channels and there is an expectation for reports which show ROI for social media outreach.

Make sure your tool has the ability to analyze important metrics such as click-through rates on shortened links, clicks by region and top referrers. It’s also important to have access to Facebook Insights and Google Analytics.

The most effective tools will provide the ability to access in-depth granular metrics on the efficacy of your social media programs. This will allow you to determine which messages resulted in the highest number of conversions, which platform is providing the greatest return and which time of day is most effective to drive traffic.

What does it take to go Pro?
Social is here to stay and to maintain a competitive advantage, businesses need to stay abreast of this ever-evolving space. HootSuite Pro help teams engage with audiences and analyze campaigns across multiple social networks like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn from one secure web-based dashboard.

– See more at: http://reelwebdesign.com/blog/2012/12/12/5-must-haves-for-social-media-management/#sthash.Zt5EmQnj.HYBVpuyH.dpuf

TOP 6 Social Media Measurement Tools

Source: http://hosting.ber-art.nl/social-media-measurement-trustcloud/

Social media measurement is quite immature, just as Web analytics was back in the mid-1990s. It will evolve quickly as marketers attempt different approaches and hold enterprise measurement firms accountable to help make sense of all the activity data generated by social media interactions. In turn, social media can seem very challenging, and at times even impossible, to measure with regard to its effects.

1. TrustCloud (Facebook Group)
TrustCloud measures your virtuous online behaviors and transactions online then turns it into portable TrustScore you can use anywhere within the Sharing Economy. TrustCloud helps you leverage the good behavior you’ve built online – and gauge the trustworthiness of others offering products and services online. Like a credit score,TrustScore boosts confidence and smoothes Sharing Economy transactions. TrustCloud collects your publicly-available data from networks like Facebook, Google and LinkedIn, then analyzes it to assign your trustworthiness a ranking between 1 and 1000. We don’t share your private data or email address with third parties, and never access private communication like Twitter DMs or messaging services.

2. Empire Avenue
A game platform where you earn virtual currency for being social. Empire Avenue is a stock market simulation social network game that allows users to buy and sell shares of people and websites. Expand: Empire Avenue’s comprehensive social media suite is powered by the Social Stock Market, where you use your virtual currency to expand your social media audience. Your virtual investors will share in your success as they earn valuable currency through your online activity and engagement. Engage: Use Empire Avenue’s powerful Missions to drive traffic and engagement to your online content and social profiles, and to gain relevant new fans, followers and subscribers on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ and other networks. Evaluate: Finally, use the built-in Network Scores and other metrics to gauge the effectiveness and progress of your social media efforts, to pinpoint areas of improvement and to keep an eye on your network growth. With all of these tools in one place, Empire Avenue is the social media rocket fuel you’ve been looking for.

3. Xeeme
XeeMe is the fastest growing Social Presence Management software company. A Social Presence is the sum of all social profiles and accounts of an individual or brand. Since all social media activities are initiated from, or pointing back to that social presence, it is an individual’s or brand’s most important asset. A “XeeMe” lets users or brands organize their entire social presence, discover new networks and people and grow their presence and influence. XeeMe has the most comprehensive social presence analytics and the largest number of supported networks. XeeGraph provides a unique way to benchmark presence value and network relevance. XeeMe is free and will remain to be free. Additional business features or applications are provided as subscription service. The XeeMe team and its trained and authorized business partners are providing professional social presence building and customization consulting services.

4. Klout
Measure influence and style Klout is a visual, logical way to quickly see the main thing most organizations want to know about Twitter: where you stand against the competition. Klout digs deep into social media to understand how people influence each other, so that everyone can discover and be recognized for how they influence the world. Influence is the ability to drive action, such as sharing a picture that triggers comments and likes, or tweeting about a great restaurant and causing your followers to go try it for themselves.

5. Kred
We all have Kred somewhere. Kred, created by PeopleBrowsr, measures influence in online communities connected by affinities.Kred Story creates a visual stream from a person’s most popular content and what people are saying to and about them. Simply enter any Twitter @name to get an overview of their social media interactions. Also try entering @names of brands, companies and media to get a full view of their most influential content.

6. PeerIndex
Assess your online social capital. Where Klout was accessible and easy to decipher, I found PeerIndex a bit better. PeerIndex measures interactions across the web to help you understand your impact in social media. We want you to learn about the people you influence and see who influences you. We believe that everything you do is valuable. You make the videos, you write the reviews and you form the connections. YOU are the contributor – you are the content – you are the link. In short, without you the Internet would suck. We recognize this and aim to make your experiences in social media more rewarding.


Here are some others that are also Social Media Measurement Tools

  • Twitalyzer: A subscription-model tool Twitalyzer operates mainly on a subscription model, but gives away some basic features for free.
  • TweetStats: Graph your stats! Tweetstats remains true to its name, as it compiles a bar graph for quick viewing of your monthly stats.
  • Pinreach: PinReach, LLC (Formerly PinClout) is a fresh new startup created by Chris Fay (Chris Fay Consulting, LLC) and Daniel Schimpfoessl (PureField, LLC), focusing on bringing insight and analytics to Pinterest. We both felt that beneath the fun of Pinterest lay a powerful platform, one that if leveraged well could prove quite the upper hand for people and brands. We set off to create a new service offering valued insight into the activity on the site, launching initially with the PinReach score, a numeric representation of a member’s Pinterest influence based on a series of social attributes.
  • Crowdbooster: Schedule and analyze. Of all the applications I used, Crowdbooster was my personal favorite.
  • TweetGrader: Score your profile. Part of a suite of free online marketing tools powered by HubSpot, Tweet Grader is a straightforward tool that measures the power of your Twitter profile.
  • TweetReach: Insight into your tweets. Ever wondered about the value of a tweet? With Tweet Reach, you can get analytics that measure the impact of social media conversations.
  • Postrank: Intelligence from the social web The social web connects people where they share, critique and interact with content and each other. PostRank is the largest aggregator of social engagement data in the industry.
  • Pinpuff : influence is measure of your popularity, influence and reach on Pinterest. It also decides monetary value of your pins & traffic your pins generate.
  • We are doing some really cool stuff around Pinterest and first 1000 beta users will get exclusive invite to try out our experiments with Pinterest well before it is opened for all.
  • Twentyfeet: Check your track. TwentyFeet is an “egotracking” service that will help you keep track of your own social media activities and monitor your results. We aggregate metrics from different services, thus giving you the full picture of what happens around you on the web – all in one place.
  • SproutSocial: Super-charge your company’s social media efforts. Sprout Social builds powerful, intuitive social media management tools used by thousands of businesses across the globe. We help businesses delight their audience and get real value from their social efforts.
  • Twylah: Get a custom brand page for your tweets. Twylah exists to drive deeper engagement with your Twitter followers.
  • MyWebCareer: Discover, Evaluate, and Monitor Your Professional Online Brand. Enables you to uncover and evaluate your digital footprint. It’s a great networking tool and is useful when exploring the way your social profiles connect across the Web to create an overall picture of yourself or your business.

 

Source: http://www.inc.com/geoffrey-james/cold-calling-16-ways-to-start-sales-conversation.html?nav=pop

The most effective way to open a conversation is to connect your call to one of these “trigger events.” Here’s how.

Cold Call Guy / Getty

The purpose of a cold call is to have a conversation to determine whether a potential customer has the following two things:
  • a need your offering can satisfy, and
  • the money to purchase it.

That conversation can happen, though, only if you get through the customer’s natural reluctance to speak with a stranger.

The easiest way to get through that reluctance is to have a reason you’re calling, other than just the fact that you have something to sell.

For example, suppose you’re selling an inventory control system. Here are two possible ways to begin the conversation:

  • “I’m calling because I’m selling a great inventory control system that can save you money.”
  • “I’m calling because I understand that you just announced a new product line–and since that usually increases inventory costs, you may be looking to for a way to reduce those costs.”

The second example is more likely to result in a conversation because it relates what you’re selling to what’s called a trigger event, a change in the way that a potential customer operates its business.

The following trigger events are all excellent conversation starters:

  1. The company has opened a new factory or facility.
  2. It is moving an existing facility to a new location.
  3. It has hired a new executive.
  4. It has lost an existing executive.
  5. It has announced a layoff.
  6. It has announced an expansion.
  7. It has acquired a new major customer.
  8. It has lost a major customer.
  9. It has launched a new product line.
  10. It has retired an existing product line.
  11. It has updated a major existing product.
  12. It is acquiring another company.
  13. It is being acquired by another company.
  14. It has announced a restructuring.
  15. It has announced a new round of financing.
  16. It has announced a change in ownership.

The trick to using trigger events is creating a reasonable link between the event and what you’re selling. The more logical the link, the more likely that bringing up the trigger will result in a conversation.

Where do you find these trigger events? The cheapest way is to check the press releases on the website of the company that you’re calling. An easier way, however, is to expand your CRM system to include a service, like SalesLoft.com or InsideView.com, that trolls the Web and displays relevant news stories and announcements on potential or current customers.

Geoffrey James writes the Sales Source column on Inc.com, the world’s most-visited sales-oriented blog. His newly published book is Business to Business Selling: Power Words and Strategies From the World’s Top Sales Experts@Sales_Source