Tag Archives: internet marketing

Educating A New Generation

“Things have changed since I was in school.” Sounds like something your parents said to you growing up, huh? That statement still holds true. Kids are a part of a whole new learning generation; interaction is mostly via instant message, text message, Twitter and Facebook and the internet is the first place they turn for research. The shift in marketing is taking place as we speak, but are Marketing and Public Relations instructors and professors educating their students about the phenomenon that is social media?

Back in the day, marketing majors were required to learn the 4 P’s (Product, Price, Promotion, Place) and that is still relevant, but along with the 4 P’s they need to have a basic understand of HTML, design software, e-mail marketing campaigns, search engine optimization, and knowledge of social media (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube,etc). However, are recent grads receiving said education?

We’ve all read that many companies are struggling to understand social media and how it can be used in their industry. With this occurring, companies are looking to hire recent grads with degrees in Marketing and Public Relations to fill the social media gap. But, are colleges and universities integrating the new trends in marketing into their curriculum – such courses as Internet Marketing, Digital Media and New-Media Marketing? Another challenge: are college professors and faculty on top of the changing trends in the marketing world? If not, they need to be. How can you teach it, if you don’t fully understand it yourself? As the old adage states, “lead by example.”

Here’s a questions for all our Marketing & PR majors out there –Are NC State, Duke and UNC teaching courses on new-media and internet marketing? Or are you educating the professors on social media?

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Filed under Email Marketing, Facebook, marketing basics, north carolina, social media, twitter

A Few Quick Tips to Overcome the Social Media Hurdle

hurdleMany companies are using social media to build their brand and gain recognition in the marketplace, and others want to start integrating social media into their marketing mix but aren’t sure where to start.

Here are a few thoughts on launching a campaign:

• Embrace failure and learn from the mistakes – Look at Skittles – they launched a Twitter campaign by turning their homepage into a Twitter feed. When that failed Skittles tried another approach, but didn’t take into consideration what happened the first time! They didn’t learn from their first mistake and what happened – Strike 2! Their ego-centric approach didn’t work the 1st time, why would it work the 2nd time? Learn from the mistakes made and correct them on the 2nd approach to achieve the goal you sought out in the first place.

• Engage with your audience – listen to their ideas and thoughts; don’t make the social media effort all about YOU.

• There is no “I” in team – collaborate with team members to get their feedback and insight on the initiative.

• When launching a social media campaign have a clear, focused goal in mind and follow the necessary steps to achieve it. Is it driving visits to the website? Is it signing up for a webinar? Consider your goal and how you will measure the results of your effort. But recall, sometimes social media ROI can be fuzzy.

• Create something of value for your audience. Give them a reason to care.

• Know your audience before implementing a campaign and be prepared for the worst before it occurs.

• Be up front and honest with your intentions – it establishes trust and credibility.

Plan for success, prepare for failure!

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Filed under social media, twitter

Internet Marketing Channels – Which Is Right For You?

internet_advertising_250x251Of course, there is no right or wrong answer to that question. It all depends on who your market is, how they prefer to be reached and at what cost. Internet marketing channels provide different results at different costs – display advertising, affiliate marketing, email marketing, pay-per click advertising (PPC), search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing (SMM), viral content campaigns, and conversion rate optimization (CRO). Ask yourself some basic questions before choosing one of these channels – What are your company goals? How much are you willing to spend on your marketing efforts? Who are your available resources – in-house or outsourced? Understanding your customer or prospect is essential. Spending a large portion of your budget on SEO, for instance, may not be appropriate if much of your business comes from word of mouth.

Rand Fishkin of SEOmoz came up with a formula for choosing the right marketing channel – compare your budget with your company goals and see what marketing channel will meet each goal – be it driving web traffic, building brand awareness or educating your market.

goals-budget-priorities

There is no one-size-fits-all strategy when determining what internet marketing channel(s) to use. Each business is different and should optimize its strengths to their advantage when initiating marketing efforts. Talking to a strategic marketing expert may help you craft a targeted plan based on market knowledge. Give us a call to talk more.

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Filed under Web Marketing

The Move to Online Advertising is Happening – but there’s a catch.

onlineadsDo you find online ads annoying or distracting? If so, you’re not alone! In a recent poll taken by LinkedIn Research and Harris, consumers are less than thrilled about the idea of online advertising. As a consumer, I dislike online ads that are flashy, distracting and pop-up over the content I am reading. But an increasing number of marketers are moving advertising spending away from traditional mediums to online.
The poll reported that 80% of consumer respondents find online ads that expand to cover their reading irritating. 79% said they didn’t like ads that were difficult to close and 76% don’t like pop-up ads. (Who are the 24% who do?) 66% don’t dislike ads that open when they mouse over them. 60% mentioned animated ads—either silent or those with sound—as distracting.
If consumers are so dissatisfied and irritated by these ads, why do marketers continue to use this approach?
Online ads are an important tool in a marketing mix and shouldn’t be used alone; they should be used in conjunction with other forms of advertising such as media, television and radio. They also should be targeted properly, so the consumer doesn’t get frustrated with the content and see it as a distraction.
Our suggestion is if you plan to use online ads as a form of marketing, be sure to do research on what your target demographic likes before initiating an online ad campaign that receives negative feedback.

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Filed under online advertising

Have you secured your Facebook username yet?

Facebook LogoNot to worry you still have time! Social networking site Facebook recently offered the option to create a username to its more than 200 million active users. This new feature allows you to create your own custom URL for your profile. Don’t fret if someone has taken your name, you can request removal to prevent people from using your trademarked name. By creating a username, you are not only protecting your brand, but you’re making it easier for people to find your page on Facebook. It also increases your shareability, is good for your promotional strategy, and a viable B2B marketing channel.

Don’t wait any longer. Get yours today!

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Filed under Facebook, social media, Web Marketing

Website Tip: Include contact information on ALL pages.

yellow_pagesEvery page should have the website’s main URL along with the business’ contact information, usually included at the end of the site.  This allows users who save the website to a disk or print the page out to have a way to return to your site or contact you later.

There’s no way to know where the consumer is in their buying process.  Having your information ready and available makes it that much easier for them to contact you about your product or services down the road!

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Filed under Worst Website Ever Contest