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Browsing "social media"

Run If You Hear These Five SEO Marketing Statements

Aug 6, 2009   //   by freshtraffic   //   online advertising, online marketing, search marketing, seo, social media  //  Comments Off

If you hear your agency, consultant or service provider make any of these five statements, consider running.

1.) Hi, I’m Mike from XXX National Directory/Search/Ad Network Company, and I am a Marketing Consultant with the company. I am here to help you build your marketing plan.

RUN! FAST! Nothing against these folks (really), but selling Yellow Pages or even a “boxed” pay-per-click solution does not make you a marketing consultant. It makes you someone that is trying to sell Yellow Pages or a “boxed” pay-per-click solution. There’s nothing wrong with selling. God knows we all do it in some form or fashion, but please don’t try to mislead people by calling yourself a marketing consultant.

Clarification: If you are in fact interesting in purchasing what essentially amounts to an advertising package, by all means engage with these folks. Just don’t expect to get any marketing strategy advice out of them.


2.) If you choose us for your SEO project, we can guarantee multiple top 10 rankings on your targeted keywords.

I thought these people had gone away, but it appears they’re back in full force. And I can’t blame clients for listening. When someone tells you they can guarantee results, it’s hard to ignore.

That being said, let’s all say this together: SEO is not a quick fix, set it and forget it solution for driving traffic . The best SEO strategies I’ve seen involve a long-term commitment to the creation of relevant content, building that content in multiple formats, and finding multiple distribution channels for that content.

I am guessing there are companies that make an SEO guarantee and do follow through on it. I am also guessing that those guarantees are made on keywords like “patent attorneys that also handle divorce cases in reston virginia”.

3.) You really can’t afford to wait on addressing social media. We should build out your presence on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter right away.

Stop. Please. We all realize that social media is important, even though it’s getting a bit crowded. Like anything else though, you shouldn’t build anything if it doesn’t fit into a more strategic plan.

Some of these groups will bait you with the promise of thousands of Twitter followers, Facebook friends, or LinkedIn connections overnight. Great. Go ahead and recruit thousands of followers, all of whom could care less about your message. They’re following you because they’re trolling for followers as well. And the followers/friends/connections you do want? You’ll turn them off quick with the hundreds of meaningless updates you’ll have to post to accumulate all the meaningless followers.

Build a social media strategy. Make sure it ties back to your overall marketing strategy. Then join, listen, learn, and eventually execute. It’s that simple.

And one more thing, and I know this will be painful for some “social media gurus” to hear. Social media is NOT a necessity, nor is it necessarily effective, for every business and business category.

4.) We know you think of us as a print design shop, but just last week we added capabilities in web design and development, search engine optimization, pay-per-click management, email marketing, social media…oh, and we can also handle your dry cleaning if necessary.

Wow, just last week huh? So you must have hired an entire new team right? Nope. Acquired a company that specializes in those areas? Nope. Formed a joint venture with a web marketing agency? Not so much.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with trusting a marketing service provider that has done you right over the years and who is now claiming to offer new services. Just make sure you probe a bit or execute a small trial project before diving in head first.

5.) You shouldn’t cut back on your marketing/advertising spend in a recession. As a matter of fact, I was reading in Business Week (or insert another referenced publication) that the companies that spend MORE during a recession end up as the top brands years later.

So your client just laid off half his/her staff, notified remaining staff that salaries and bonus levels have been frozen for the time being, cancelled plans to open the new office in the commuter-friendly downtown location…and you’re going to bring the “increase your marketing spend” message?

Don’t get me wrong. Increasing marketing spending may be right for certain companies; we’ve even seen a few of those up close and personal in the last few months. But the first move – as an agency, consultant or service provider – should be to figure out how to spend your client’s marketing dollars more efficiently.

Social Media can open our eyes to the value of physical life

Aug 4, 2009   //   by freshtraffic   //   social media, social networking  //  Comments Off

The culture war over social media is raging out of control. In the latest conflagration, Vincent Nichols, the new Archbishop of Westminster, launched a vitriolic attack on the unnaturalness of social media.

In America, critics of the social media revolution are also growing in strength. One of the most popular books of the summer is Matthew B. Crawford’s Shop Class as Soulcraft, a gently defiant defense of physical labour in the age of the digital social network. Much less gentle, but equally defiant is Digital Barbarism, a spirited polemic by the American novelist Mark Helprin, which accuses social media of everything from wrecking the physical economy of culture to destroying human literacy and personal conversation.

Unfortunately, many social media evangelists don’t seem to listening to these critics. For all the manifold warnings about the impact of social media, there is still a common belief amongst social media utopians that network communities are uniting rather than dividing human beings. Take, for example, the forthcoming new book (to be published in the US on September 3 by Portfolio) by Shel Israel, appropriately entitled Twitterville, which claims the “conversational era” puts an end to the constraint of geography and enables the flowering of “global neighborhoods.”

Online Marketing Eats Into Traditional Media

Jul 19, 2009   //   by freshtraffic   //   ecommerce, online marketing, social media  //  Comments Off

Interactive marketing will near $55 billion and represent 21 percent of all marketing dollars spent in 2014 as advertisers shift money away from traditional media to search marketing, display advertising, e-mail marketing, social media and mobile promotions, according to a recent study.

The trend is already underway, as more marketers this year are taking money from traditional marketing budgets and using it in interactive advertising, as opposed to supporting interactive efforts with new funding, as was the case in years past, according to the Forrester Research report “US Interactive Marketing Forecast 2009 to 2014,” by Shar VanBoskirk.

“This cannibalization of traditional media will bring about a decline in overall advertising budgets, death to obsolete agencies, a publisher awakening and a new identity for Yahoo,” writes VanBoskirk.

She goes on to say that while ad budgets will decrease, marketing investments won’t, as any money saved by using cheaper interactive media will be put toward funding IT technology and staff, customer service and so on.

Given this, traditional ad agencies must include interactive marketing for mere survival. “We’ve hinted before that agencies that can’t transition from pushing out messages to nurturing customer connections aren’t long for this world. Agency readers, heed our warning. Services firms that lack data management, analytics, listening, social media execution, and strategy expertise will dry up,” warns the report.

Social media campaigns are growing into an established part of the interactive ad mix as more companies embrace it — 64 percent of marketers already build social media applications and 22 percent more will by the end of 2009.

Search marketing continues to do well, in both adoption, today 80 percent of marketers use it, and money spent. “Search marketing accounts for 59 percent of the overall interactive pie. We project spend on paid listings, which includes paid inclusion, and search engine optimization (SEO) to grow at a CAGR of 15 percent, to $31 billion by 2014,” according to the report.

The report says advertisers favor pay-per-click over impression-based display campaigns, with 58 percent going to PPC – and the trend is expected to continue. Rich media is also gaining traction, currently about one-third of display spend, rich media will grow to 45 percent by 2014 as marketers use more and pay a premium for rich media.

E-mail marketing continues to grow, with an 11 percent CAGR over the next five years, due to the “green” market campaigns being in vogue and to increased integration with social media sites.

Inbound Internet Marketing

Jul 19, 2009   //   by freshtraffic   //   internet marketing, online marketing, social media  //  Comments Off

In response to the evolving change in online marketing strategies, Fresh Traffic announces a complete Inbound Internet Marketing package that encompasses everything a business needs in order to become a web marketing powerhouse. Fresh traffic is an Internet Marketing Services company that expertly provides small businesses with the much needed edge in the big world of search engine marketing to increase their customer base without depleting the company’s financial resources.

“Businesses are seeking returns on their marketing dollars and they’re shifting money out of expensive phonebook ads, direct mail, telemarketing, and into website optimization, expert content and social media that help them get found in organic search results.”Marketing your business in today’s online world, forces small businesses to throw out the old handbook and try new strategies. Traditional outbound marketing using direct mail, print advertising, and phonebook ads are becoming more expensive and less effective. Today, consumers use search engines, blogs, and social media to learn about products and services.

“Businesses are seeking returns on their marketing dollars and they’re shifting money out of expensive phonebook ads, direct mail, telemarketing, and into website optimization, expert content and social media that help them get found in organic search results.”"These changes are laying the foundation for a new marketing strategy on the web.

To succeed online today, businesses need to adopt an Inbound Internet Marketing Strategy. Instead of pushing a sales message out, inbound marketing is the process of drawing prospective customers into their business by allowing the consumer to choose to learn more about a company’s product or service. Fresh traffic’s Inbound Marketing Services will help small businesses be found on search engines, blogs, the media, and help convert those new visitors into leads.

Digital Marketing and the New Push / Pull Dynamic

Jun 28, 2009   //   by freshtraffic   //   digital marketing, internet marketing, social media  //  Comments Off

From Company Push to Consumer Pull
What is push and pull marketing? Push is the 30-second TV / radio spot. Push is the billboard and web banner. Push is the full-page magazine / newspaper spread. Push is becoming evermore difficult to push. The converse of push, is pull. Pull marketing is engaging; interactive; a two-way line of communication. To illustrate the push / pull marketing dynamic 15 years ago, if you were in the market to buy a TV, what resources would you have at your disposal? TV, radio, billboard, direct mail advertisements might have influenced your decision. Those messages are finely crafted to be persuasive. In essence: they’re bias. For a more objective view, you might turn to your friend that knows something about TVs. Or, you can go to Best Buy and they might be able to educate and inform your decision. In short, advertisements and a handful of “experts” were your resources. That was the push / pull dynamic then.

In the digital era, we can better manage and prioritize the influence of each resource. With the ubiquity of the internet, resources are seemingly endless; therefore you can choose which are more important as you refine our decision. Where in the past your decision was constrained to a limited number of resources, in the digital age, there are countless information hubs to help you choose one product over another. With the extensive consumer conversation on social media sites and product pages, what weight does the mass message—pushed from TV, billboard, radio, etc—carry when you’re making your decision? Though consumers will still soak up push marketing—and factor those impressions into their spending decisions—the internet and its vast networking reach typically bypasses traditional push media. In the past, the number of resources was limited—therefore each opinion meant more and consumers were just consumers. In today’s age, consumers are researchers, advocates, creators, promoters and marketers.

Reallocation of Marketing Efforts
In response to this consumer empowerment, companies are developing new strategies to adapt and grow in this different marketing world. Consider the marketing landscape only 15 years ago. If a company wanted to launch a product, they would allocate X amount of dollars to cast a wide net of impressions to influence a buying decision.

In a world influenced by the digital consumer network, even the word “consumer” is limiting in its simplicity. In the most innovative marketing efforts, consumers are the creators, advocates, promoters, marketers and buyers. To have a presence in the new consumer world, marketers are facilitating the conversation and activities through valuable tools and concepts online. The most engaging marketing tools can be implemented in the digital world. With a multi-sensorial experience and a multitude of engagement opportunities, brands can enhance their consumer experience beyond the conventional marketing tactics.

Pull marketing combines viral, blogging, social media, SEO, internet marketing, RSS etc. into a methodology where consumers engage and build something with the brand. No longer is advertising an interruption between news, or a distraction in nature’s landscape. Marketing is more about choice and engagement, less than it is a distraction. If you are relying too much on heavily push media today, now is the time to embrace the paradigm shift towards consumer-powered marketing

2009 Internet Marketing Trends

Jan 1, 2009   //   by freshtraffic   //   internet news, online marketing, social media  //  1 Comment

What trends should internet marketers look for in 2009? I’ve decided to list some of my thoughts on changes in the industry for the coming year, what to expect and emerging marketing opportunities.

Social Media Tools – Just as social media marketing has become more popular over the last few years, so has the need for tools to help marketers manage this space. I expect more analytical and management tools for marketers to help make business sense of social media.

Closed Networks – Google will continue to be the major player in search, but do not underestimate closed networks (LinkedIn) and smaller players that fit a niche. Closed networks will continue to grow and may offer more opportunity to reach your target audience.

Internet TV – I have been hyping online TV services like Joost and Hulu for the past year. This will be the year for internet TV in my opinion. Services have jumped through some technical hurdles and now offer respectable performance over a broadband connection. Entertainment is becoming more personalized, so it only makes sense to watch what you want when you want.

Mobile Marketing – Now that we have more advanced mobile networks and devices (iPhone 3G and G2), companies are beginning to invest in mobile applications that compliment their online experience. Many of these applications will enable real time interaction with product and services. What was cocktail conversation a couple years ago will now become a reality for many mobile consumers.

What trends do you think will be the big movers in 2009?

Sean Hecking

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