Sports Highlights

first_imgNew Delhi, Jun 28 (AFP) The following are the top/ expected stories at 17oo hours EXPECTED STORIES: *Report of the FIFA World Cup match between Senegal and Colombia. *Report of the FIFA World Cup match between Japan and Poland. *Report of the FIFA World Cup match between Belgium and England. *Report of the FIFA World Cup match between Tunisia and Panama. STORIES ON THE WIRE:SPO-WC-BRAZILThiago, Paulinho steer Brazil into World Cup’s last 16Moscow, Jun 28 (AFP) Brazil eased into the World Cup knockout stages after defeating Serbia 2-0 here, with superstar Neymar sparkling in a win which sets up a last 16 clash against Mexico. SPO-IND-KOHLIExpect a lot of experimentation in next four T20s: KohliMalahide (Ireland), Jun 28 (PTI) India captain Virat Kohli wants to “surprise the opposition” by experimenting with his middle order in the remaining T20s against Ireland and the subsequent three-match series against England. SPO-IND-PREVIEW2nd T20: India look to ring in the changes against Ireland By Chetan Narula Malahide (Dublin), Jun 28 (PTI) Experiment is the buzzword as India prepare to take on Ireland in the second and final T20 International, aiming to strike the perfect balance while ringing in the changes here tomorrow. SPO-BAD-INDSaina crashes out of Malaysia OpenKuala Lumpur, Jun 28 (PTI) Olympic medallist Saina Nehwal’s run in the Malaysia Open ended with a straight-game loss to Japan’s Akane Yamaguchi in the women’s singles competition of the USD 700,000 world tour super 750 tournament here today. SPO-IND-KULDEEPOn his maiden UK tour, Kuldeep Yadav feeling at homeadvertisement By Chetan Narula Malahide (Ireland), June 28 (PTI) It is still early days in his maiden tour of the UK but Kuldeep Yadav feels he has adapted well to the conditions with a four-wicket haul against Ireland in the opening T20 here. SPO-ATH-NIRMALADidn’t do anything suspicious, was battling personal problems: NirmalaBy Philem Dipak SinghGuwahati, Jun 28 (PTI) Indian quartermiler Nirmala Sheoran arrived back on the scene after a year of “battling personal problems” to qualify for the Asian Games with an impressive timing of 52.36 seconds in the women’s 400m heats of the National Inter-State Senior Athletics Championships here today.SPO-KABADDIIndia, Iran firm favourites in Kabaddi semisDubai, Jun 28 (PTI) Reigning world champions India and runners-up Iran will be favourites to make the final when they take on their respective semifinal opponents in the Kabaddi Masters here tomorrow. PTI APA APAAPAlast_img read more

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Atletico Madrid sign Portugal winger Gelson Martins for free

first_imgPortugal winger Gelson Martins has signed for Atletico Madrid as a free agent, the Spanish side said on Wednesday.”Our club has reached an agreement with Gelson Martins, making him a new Atletico player,” said a statement from last season’s La Liga runners-up.”The Portuguese attacker, who arrives as a free agent, has signed for six seasons.”Martins rescinded his contract with Portuguese side Sporting Lisbon last month, one of nine players to quit the club after an attack in May on a training camp by hooded supporters, some armed with sticks, in which Dutch forward Bas Dost was injured and the dressing room was vandalised.The incidents came at the end of a tumultuous campaign for Atletico Madrid sign Portugal winger Gelson Martins for freeSporting who finished third in the Primeira Liga and reached the quarter-finals of the Europa League.Martins has been capped 19 times for Portugal and was part of their squad for the 2018 World Cup in Russia, appearing as a substitute in the 1-0 win over Morocco.Martins, 23, is Atletico’s fifth signing of the close season, following the acquisitions of Thomas Lemar from AS Monaco, Rodri from Villarreal, Jonny Castro from Celta Vigo and Antonio Adan from Real Betis. Southampton’s Clasie joins Feyenoord on season-long loanSouthampton midfielder Jordy Clasie will join Dutch side Feyenoord on a season-long loan deal, the Premier League club said on Wednesday.The 27-year-old Dutch international returns to Feyenoord, where he made 155 appearances over four years, before arriving at St Marys in 2015.advertisementLast season, Clasie was away on loan at Club Brugge and helped them win the Belgian first division title.Clasie has made 49 appearances for Southampton but manager Mark Hughes has opted against bringing him back into his first-team plans ahead of the new season.last_img read more

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Lastlook

first_imgKick offTime and sport are joined at the hip. What would sport be without nail-biting finishes and one-hundredth of a second misses. Enter timekeepers and their crucial role as arbiters of victories and fortunes. On the cusp of its third season as the official timekeeper of Manchester United, Swiss watch,Kick offTime and sport are joined at the hip. What would sport be without nail-biting finishes and one-hundredth of a second misses. Enter timekeepers and their crucial role as arbiters of victories and fortunes. On the cusp of its third season as the official timekeeper of Manchester United, Swiss watch brand TAG Heuer is launching two new models sporting the colours of this famed football club: the TAG Heuer Carrera Heuer 01 and TAG Heuer Formula 1. Both models boast contemporary design with cleverly contrasting use of red and anthracite grey.The first model will be the TAG Heuer Carrera Heuer 01a special edition where the striking red of Manchester United takes centre stage on this sporty piece, featuring the TAG Heuer shield on the bezel at 12 oclock, while the sapphire case-back highlights the famous Manchester United red devil decal logo. The seconda football-inspired quartz chronographTAG Heuer Formula 1 chronograph, which completes one revolution of the counter positioned at 6 oclock every second, is not just a viewing pleasure but also one of the best value watches on the market. Price On Request Availablility Brand 0utletslast_img read more

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My life changed after Commonwealth Games: Manika Batra at Mind Rocks 2018

first_imgManika Batra is the leading lady of Indian table tennis at the moment. Ever since her twin gold medal performance at the Commonwealth Games (CWG), she has become the newest star of Indian sports and Manika accepted that her life has changed post her show in Gold Coast, Australia.Manika, with her kohled eyes and inspirational table tennis, has begun a new chapter in India’s tryst with the sport and she is enjoying all the recognition and adulation from the Indian public.Manika, who started playing table tennis at the age of four, led the Indian women’s team to a gold medal against four-time defending champion Singapore in CWG in Gold Coast.During the team event, Manika defeated world No.4 Tianwei Feng and world No.23 Yu Mengyu. She followed it up with a win over both these players in women’s singles to win another gold medal.Also read – Mind Rocks 2018: Manika Batra, Dutee Chand request constant support from governmentThe entire India celebrated Manika for finishing the CWG as the most successful individual athlete, having won four medals (2 Gold, 1 Silver and 1 Bronze). She came back to a rousing reception at the New Delhi airport and ever since, she is a well-recognised face in the country.”When I came back from CWG my life changed. Now people recognise me and it feels great that people who did not watch table tennis now understand how difficult it is and have hope from the sport in Olympics and big tournaments,” Manika said at India Today Mind Rocks 2018.advertisementManika thanked the government, table tennis federation and Sports Authority of India for their support in helping the athletes achieve their dreams.She said how not just her but all the table tennis players are working extremely hard and are indeed getting better.SESSION VIDEO | PHOTOS”Indian performances are getting better for the past one year, not just me but everyone else. Everyone is working hard and everyone wants to beat China. We are working hard and for the last two years, we have been receiving support from the government, SAI and the federation, which boards well for us.”She would like to believe that she has a chance to win an Olympic medal after bagging mixed doubles bronze at the Asian Games. She assured that the hard work is in her hands and she will leave no stones unturned.”Asian Games is a very tough event and if we have defeated Asians there, I will try my best to beat them at the Olympics.”Also read – Dutee Chand proud of being first athlete to fight against hyperandrogenism ruleManika gave the three pointers for the success of Indian table tennis players and that will help them make a name in the world.”First, we need support from everywhere like how we are receiving now. Secondly, like Lakshya was saying, Saina Nehwal and Sindhu are very determined and focussed, we have to keep our own focus as well. Thirdly, I can say about my sport again, if we have to compete with the Chinese and other Asian players, we need to work on fitness a lot.”last_img read more

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PM Modi celebrates birthday with school children, offers prayers at Kashi Vishwanath temple

first_imgPrime Minister Narendra Modi spent his 68th birthday at his parliamentary constituency Varanasi with school children. During his interaction with school students, the PM told them not to be afraid about asking questions as it is a key aspect of learning.Immediately after landing in Varanasi on Monday evening, PM Modi visited the primary school in Narul village and celebrated his birthday with students of the primary school.Apart from telling students to ask more questions, PM also told them to give importance to sports and learn various other skills.He spent around 30 minutes with students at primary school in Narur.READ | Happy Birthday, Narendra Modi: Greetings flood social mediaRoad at the Narur village was repaired and primary school was also renovated ahead of PM’s visit by the district administration. The students seemed happy and also gifted greeting cards to the prime minister.”He came to the library and told us to read more books to increase our knowledge. He also gave us tips to remain healthy and told us to concentrate on sports activities,” said a student of Class 5 after meeting PM Modi.Another student, Nancy, said, “We gave him greetings prepared by us. PM was very happy and he has promised to visit the school again. He has inspired us to concentrate on both studies and sports. It was an unbelievable experience.”READ | Manushi Chhillar wishes PM Narendra Modi happy birthday with adorable postPM Modi also brought some gifts for the students. The students were provided with solar lamp, stationary, school bags and notebooks.advertisement”I am very happy to receive a return gift from the PM. He motivated us by saying that we are the future of this country. It was a great experience to interact with him,” said a student who received the return gift from PM Modi.PM Modi was welcomed by a team of Anganwadi and ASHA workers at the Babatpur Airport in Varanasi. He met children at the Kashi Vaidyapeeth and also offered prayers at the Kashi Vishwanath temple in Varanasi.Meanwhile, celebrations were planned at multiple places by BJP workers and Modi supporters in Varanasi. The workers celebrated the PM’s birthday by cutting a cake and distributing sweets.PM Modi is expected to stay in Varanasi tonight, and will also inaugrate developmental schemes of more than Rs 550 crore.Modi will inaugurate the Integral Power Development Scheme(IPDS) and Atal Incubation Centre at the Banaras Hindu University (BHU) on Tuesday. He will also lay the foundation stone for a regional ophthalmology centre followed by a speech at a gathering in BHU.READ | Modi is third PM to get book published by Mahatma Gandhi trustlast_img read more

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5 Disastrous Misconceptions About Marketing Automation

first_imgThere’s a lot of buzz around whether marketing automation software is worth the investment of time and money, or whether it’s a waste. Here’s the thing: marketing automation can be a really great complement to your inbound marketing strategy IF it’s used correctly. Many marketers, however, have come to believe some things about marketing automation that simply aren’t true, which leads to misuse of the software and ultimately ends in a lot of disappointment and dismal results. Let’s clear up 5 of the most common misconceptions that surround marketing automation and highlight both the dangers and merits inherent in marketing automation.1. Marketing Automation Gets You LeadsThis is the biggest misconception out there about marketing automation, so let’s clear it up right now. Marketing automation does not get you leads; inbound marketing does. In fact, 25% of your database expires every year, so it’s crucial to maintain inbound marketing efforts alongside marketing automation to ensure your database doesn’t slowly wither away. When done correctly, however, marketing automation does help you make the most of those leads by nurturing them and navigating them through the decision-making process until they decide they’re ready to buy (and even after they become a customer, to make sure they stay happy!).2. Marketing Automation Means ‘Set It and Forget It’This is one of the easiest ways to make sure your marketing automation investment is a complete waste. Marketing automation software can offer robust functionality, but without an insightful marketer behind it to continually analyze and tweak campaigns, all that functionality is useless. Is your click-through rate on an email low? Test a new subject line. Is one segment of your database opting out of emails at a faster rate than others? Perhaps your send frequency is too high, or your messaging isn’t quite hitting the mark. No one (and I mean no one) gets it right the first time. Keep coming back to check in on your data, adjust what didn’t work, and do more of what works well.3. Marketing Automation Helps With Email DeliverabilityYou can definitely still spam people with marketing automation, and marketing automation software cannot help you get your emails through spam filters. Marketers still have to understand and implement email marketing best practices and avoid things like sending irrelevant emails, emailing too frequently, and emailing people who haven’t opted in to their communications. Between sophisticated SPAM filters, email overload, and advancements like Gmail’s priority inbox, marketers have to ensure lists are segmented and emails address something the prospect cares about. If not, messages will get weeded out of inboxes in a jiffy, no matter how sophisticated your marketing automation software is.4. Marketing Automation Personalizes CommunicationMarketing automation scales personalized communication; it doesn’t create it. The onus is still on the marketer to create buyer personas and interpret leads’ behaviors to align their needs at any given time in the buying cycle with the message they should receive. Marketing automation software is not capable of gleaning what to send, when to send it, and to whom it should be sent all on its own; it needs a marketer (usually with the help of the sales team) to tell it all of these things.5. Marketing Automation Sells For YouNo, marketing automation software is not the salesperson of the 21st century. Marketing automation software simply helps bubble up the people that are inherently more “sold” on you because you’ve done a good job creating educational content and getting it in front of them. You still have to create and optimize that content, promote it in social media, drive visitors to landing pages with killer offers, and (this is the biggie) ensure your marketing automation software is running in such a way that it delivers the right content at the right time, and it understands how to identify those people who are ready to speak to a salesperson.The major caveat to all of this (and if I haven’t emphasized this enough, here it comes…) is that marketing automation only works when done correctly. Approach marketing automation as a tool to improve your inbound marketing, not a replacement for it, and learn how to interpret visitor activity for effective use of the tool as part of your inbound marketing strategy.What other misconceptions have you encountered about marketing automation? Have you implemented it as part of your own inbound marketing strategy?Image credit: HikingArtist.com Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Nov 28, 2011 2:00:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Marketing Automation Topics:last_img read more

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How to Optimize a PDF for Search

first_img On-page SEO The debate rages on about whether or not your marketing content such as ebooks and webinars should be gated behind lead-capture forms. However, there is plenty of content such as case studies, FAQs, fact sheets, and brochures that aren’t very suitable for lead generation and can benefit from being ungated and readily available in organic search.This type of content is frequently published in PDF form, and as an important part of your inbound marketing strategy, it should get the same SEO treatment as everything else you publish. The next time you’re ready to release new PDFs out into the world, follow these 6 steps to quickly optimize them before you publish to ensure crawlers can find and index them for searchers.6 Steps to Optimize a PDF for Search1.) Create your PDF in a text-based program. When you use Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat, crawlers can read and index the content.2.) Follow SEO best practices when writing your content. Optimize your content as you would any other content for your site. Use relevant keywords in your content, H1 and H2 tags in the copy, and make sure your images include alt tags.3.) Crawlers can read links in a PDF, too. Build in links to relevant pages on your website so readers can get back to your site from the PDF. This is particularly important if your PDF is shared via email or social networks, as those readers may not have been to your site before.4.) Save the file as a PDF with a relevant file name. For example, my PDF on vegetarian Thanksgiving recipes would be called Vegetarian-Thanksgiving-Recipes.pdf. This will also help users identify the content of the PDF if they share it with others or save it for later use.5.) Fill out the Document Properties. Open your PDF in Acrobat, and fill in the document properties by going to the Menu and clicking File >>> Properties.You’ll see a screen pop up called Document Properties. Make sure you’re on the Description tab, and fill in the Title, Author, Subject, and Keywords fields.What you write in the Title field will be what appears in search results. If it is empty, search engines will auto-fill it with something in the content of your PDF, which will likely be less relevant for a searcher. Use keywords in your title for which you want your PDF to rank.Unless you yourself are a brand name (which you very well may be!), fill the Author field with your company’s name. Most people see more searches on their company than their own names.Treat the Subject field like a meta description. Write it for users to help drive conversions.Fill in the Keywords field with 3 or 4 keyword phrases you’re targeting in your PDF, separating each phrase with commas.6.) Find popular pages on your site. Once you click OK, publish your PDF to pages on your site that are frequently crawled so it’s easier for search engines to find and index the PDF.Pretty easy, right? Optimizing PDFs is a quick, simple step you can take to make content like case studies, fact sheets, brochures, product overviews, and other valuable content assets more search engine-friendly.Do you optimize PDFs for organic search? Have you run into problems trying to do so? Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Nov 17, 2011 11:30:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Topics:last_img read more

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How to Boost LinkedIn Lead Gen With Targeted Company Pages

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack One of the most underutilized features of LinkedIn Company Pages is the ability to target your company’s product page based on demographics such as job function, industry, and geographic location. In doing do, visitors to your company page will only get shown the products that are most relevant to them, increasing their chances of clicking on a link. Leveraging this feature will help you create a more targeted and thus, a more optimized experience for your page visitors. When used correctly, it’s also an amazing way to convert your social media prospects into more qualified sales leads .Smart marketers should set up their targeted LinkedIn Company Product Page variations as soon as possible. But don’t worry — it’s simple! Here are 7 easy steps to create targeted LinkedIn Company Product Page variations for your business . (Note: You’ll need to add the products/services you want to feature to your products page prior to setting up your targeting options. To do so, click Add a product or service in the Admin tools dropdown menu in your Products tab.) 6 Simple Steps to Targeted LinkedIn Company Product Page Variations Step 1: On your LinkedIn Company Page’s Products tab, click the arrow next to the Admin tools button, and click Edit . Step 2: On the Products page, click the button that reads ‘ Create New Audience .’ Step 3: Now it’s time to build your audience. Name your target audience first, and then check off which targets best fit that specific audience under the categories Company Size , Job Function , Industry , Seniority , and Geography . Some of these categories can get even more granular as well, which is also a nice feature. For example, the Industry category can be targeted as broad as “Consumer Goods” or as specific as “Wines and Spirits.” The Geography category can zone in as specific as greater metropolitan areas. If you are unsure about how to target your specific products, one way to gain beneficial insights into potential LinkedIn audiences is via the Member Statistics feature available for all LinkedIn groups ( click here to learn how ).Once you finish your targeting preferences, click ‘ Save and exit .’ Step 4: After you’ve finished selecting your targeting preferences, then it’s time to tailor your message to that specific audience segment. Are these visitors small business owners from New York City? Or are they CEOs of mid-sized companies? Here, it’s important to make sure that you craft a message that will intrigue members of this specific audience and address their particular needs. What wouldn’t you be able to originally say on the DEFAULT audience tab because it would alienate other potential customers? Now is your chance to say it. In your messaging, show how your company’s products and services can fulfill that specific audience’s particular business needs. Step 5: After setting up the messaging for your target audience, choose the specific products and services that particular audience segment would be likely to convert on. Don’t limit these to actual products and services, either. Think about featuring product demos or trials as well as offering ebooks you’ve written or webinars you’ve hosted. Are there any offers that you created to generate a specific type of lead? Here’s a great place to promote it and extend the life of your more niche lead gen efforts! LinkedIn allows you to include up to 5 products/services on each targeted page variation. (Remember: As we mentioned earlier, you’ll need to add these products/services to your products page prior to setting up your targeting options. To do so, click Add a product or service in the Admin tools dropdown menu in your Products tab.) Step 6: Once you’ve finished setting up your targeting and product offers, you’re all set! If you want to create a slightly altered version of your first targeted page, just click on Settings for that particular page (see Arrow A below), click Duplicate , and make whatever targeting changes you need for your next audience segment. Once you are done, click the  Publish button (see Arrow B below). Congratulations! You’ve just successfully completed setup for audience targeting on your LinkedIn Company Product Page! Step 7: Although it’s somewhat difficult to measure your company product page’s performance based on your individual targeting, you can measure the performance of your product offers overall. So for example, if you have a demo offer set up on your “DEFAULT” segment and your “Business Owners” segment, you can only measure performance of that demo offer across those two tabs combined. However, there is one workaround that you can implement. If you create banner “ads” on your page besides the standard dropdown box offers, you can add a tracking token to each image and measure how successfully those particular offers performed.Furthermore, you’ll also want to use your marketing analytics tool to track the effect of your LinkedIn targeting on the referral traffic and leads you’re generating from LinkedIn to your business’ website. Do you notice an increase in visits and leads?Setting up customize targeting for your LinkedIn Company Product Page is really easy to do. It’s also a great way to optimize your social media presence to pump up your lead gen efforts on LinkedIn ! What are you waiting for? Start kicking butt on LinkedIn with targeted product page variations now!Image Credit: viZZZual.com Topics: Originally published Dec 21, 2011 1:30:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 LinkedIn Company Pageslast_img read more

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6 Ways to Spice Up Bland Email Marketing Campaigns

first_img Email Marketing Campaigns Topics: This is a guest post written by Kimberly Lindquist. Kimberly is a project manager and in-house social marketer at ListEngage, a full service interactive marketing firm. She can be found tweeting about marketing, content, Boston, and other ramblings @lindquik.Do you remember creating your first email marketing campaign? Those emails were going to catapult your business to new levels, blow your content’s ROI through the roof, and make you an instant digital mogul in your industry.How long did that excitement last? Are you still in the honeymoon phase, or do you find yourself staring at your email templates bored, uninspired, and unsure of where to go next?Whichever way you feel about your email marketing, whether you’re on your first campaign or the hundredth, emails can fall flat and lose the appeal they once had for both you and your subscribers. So how do you bring the spark back into a boring email program and inject some va-va-voom into your campaigns? It’s all about approaching your email with a little creativity. Here are 6 ways to spice up your email marketing the next time your creativity (and email marketing ROI) needs a jolt.1. Try On-the-Fly A/B TestingFor a marketer, there are few things more appealing than knowing whether your campaigns are successful while they are still in motion. In this sense, A/B testing is the sexiest email marketing feature there is! Nowadays, many email service providers (ESPs) have a feature built into their platforms that allows marketers to send and compare the performance of variables like subject line and “From” sender names to sample audiences, with the winning email getting deployed to the remainder of the audience.2. Crowdsource Your Next Email CampaignAs hard as you try, it’s sometimes impossible to know exactly what your subscribers want, which is why your next email should flat-out ask them. Survey your customers to see what they want more of, less of, or what would make them visit your site more. Not only do prospects and customers appreciate your consideration of their opinion, but you may also be handed a brand new email campaign that your marketing department never would have thought of.Although many ESPs have basic survey tools included, you can also collect information on your website through a customized landing page or a survey collection tool. Suggestions for what to ask might include their topic preferences for articles you produce, what sorts of deals would entice them to purchase more often, what additional products and services they’d like your company to offer, and what sorts of service updates would be helpful to hear from your company.3. Send “Secret Code” EmailsEverybody enjoys the thrill of a good scratch off ticket now and again, so why not give the same offer to your email recipients? Segment your subscribers, and send each segment a “Secret Code” or “Hidden Discount” email that requires them to click through to see what they’ve won. For example, the owner of a bar or restaurant might send a quarter of recipients 10% off their next dinner purchase, another quarter might receive a free appetizer, some subscribers could receive an entry into a grand-prize vacation drawing, and maybe a small percentage win a free meal. By simply changing the link in the “Secret Offer” image, your recipients won’t know what they’ve won until they’re actually on your site. And who knows, maybe they’ll get a hankering for some potato skins while they’re there.4. Compile Your Products or Services Into Themed EmailsEveryone knows that the best way to get subscribers to read your emails is to provide value, but that’s sometimes harder than it sounds. What do your customers struggle with? If you own a hair salon, do you get lots of questions about the best hair treatments and conditioners? If you help run a home improvement store, do your customers have seasonal questions that you can compile to help answer their questions?One of the best ways to make a surprisingly valuable email for your customers that can also overlap with your blog is to compile “theme” emails. Your home improvement store might send a “Winter Home Care Preparation” in late October that highlights the best tricks-of-the-trade plus some of your best selling products. Your beauty salon could do a series of emails highlighting the best products for straight, curly, and wavy hair. Instead of putting all of the copy in the email, link them to blog posts on the subject to help drive traffic to your website and increase the chance customers can convert with one of your stellar offers.5. Send Real-Time Triggered MessagesNothing shows you care like quick responses in the form of real-time triggered messaging. Whether someone’s downloaded a whitepaper from you or left your site with a shopping cart half full, there’s no better time than the present to seize the moment and shoot them a quick email to let them know you’re thinking of them. Not only are you showing someone you care, but the convenience of receiving additional information in real time will show you’re attentive and “in-the-game.” Most major ESPs have APIs that developers can send data to which can trigger messages based off of online behavior. So, check into the details, and really wow your subscribers with your proven interest in their actions.6. VIP Status and Special TreatmentNo one, absolutely no one, dislikes the royal treatment; your subscribers are no different. Charm your biggest advocates and admirers by making them feel like they’re the only one in the room. Whether you email these “special” subscribers totally different offers or just give them a special status like “VIP” or “Elite Member,” they’ll eat up your email program and spread their love for you everywhere they go.This also provides you with another opportunity to share content. Let your VIP subscribers invite their friends and family to be part of the elite group. Your subscribers will relish the chance to look “in the know” with their inner circle, and you’ll expand your subscriber list, too.What do you do to spice up your email marketing when it’s feeling a little lackluster?Image credit: dark.Reactions Originally published Jan 4, 2012 11:20:00 AM, updated July 28 2017 Don’t forget to share this post! 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8 Creative Social Media Tactics to Conquer Local Competitors

first_imgLocal businesses can learn a lot from the social media marketing strategies of large, national, or international businesses. But one of the reasons consumers love social media is for the personal experience it provides. Large companies have found ways to try work around the problem this presents for community managers who are clearly located elsewhere, while local businesses have a unique opportunity that doesn’t often present itself in the face of giant corporations. If your local business isn’t all over local social media opportunities like bees on honey, now’s your chance to get started. And here are 8 creative ways to begin that cost you nothing but your time!Creative Ways Local Businesses Can Use Social Media1.) Complete all of your profile/page information. This is the least creative idea I’ll give you, but the easiest to knock out of the park. As search gets more social, it’s more and more likely your social profile could show up in search results. Make sure you’ve filled it out with adequate information about who you are, what you do, where people can find you, and how to get in touch with you. Of all the social media networks to consider when leveraging an organic search presence, Google+ is currently at the top of the pile. With its consistent incorporation of Google+ profile and page information into search results, brand presence on Google+ is quickly becoming a social media must.2.) Monitor social media mentions. Of your brand; of related products and services; of your competitors. When people are talking about these things, you should be the first to respond with a coupon, information about your product or service, or just a helpful answer to their question. People use social media for real-time information, and if you’re the one who provides the answer, you elevate yourself as a local thought leader. This tactic will help you generate new leads, close more deals, or just keep prospects, customers, and your community happy.3.) Keep track of where your prospects and customers check in. Many local businesses leverage mobile check-ins via networks like Foursquare to encourage foot traffic. But you can also use it to identify potential affiliate opportunities. Where else are your customers checking in? If you know where they spend their time, you also know where you should be making your brand visible with things like guest blogging, paid advertising, referrals, and co-marketing opportunities.4.) Do a little stalking. Check out your fans’ and followers’ profile information to see what they like, and edit adjust marketing activities and communications accordingly. This helps you create buyer personas, refine the style, tone, and content of your messaging, and ensure you’re talking about the things your audience likes to prompt more social engagement.5.) Become a resource for local events in your industry. Keeping your ear to the ground on events — whether live or web-based — that your audience would like to attend makes you an indispensable resource. Aggregate everything that’s happening in your industry, and maintain groups on social networks like Facebook and LinkedIn, or Circles on Google+ that keep interested parties up to date on can’t-miss activities. And be sure to show up to these events, too; your future customers will be there!6.) Maintain your presence on local review sites. Sites like Yelp! often appear among the top results in search engines. How does your reputation look? Consumers hold peer reviews in high esteem, and it’s crucial that their first impression of you is positive. Plus, these sites help answer common questions for customers like addresses, hours of operation, and contact information that people are frequently checking on their mobile devices when on the go. You should be actively involved in maintaining your reputation on these sites by keeping your business information up to date, soliciting positive reviews from happy customers, and working to resolve issues with those who have posted negative reviews of your business.7.) Ask your employees to use their social networks on your behalf. National companies may ask their employees to do this, but they won’t reap as much benefit unless their employees connect with people that are overwhelmingly interested in their industry. Fat chance, right? But you know what people tend to have in common with lots of their connections? Location! If their networks know their friend or family member works for a local company, you can be sure they’ll contact them the next time they need a local dentist, doctor, health food store, pet groomer, t-shirt maker, customized widget designer…well, you get the point.8.) Connect with other local businesses and consumers. Get active in online conversations. Connect with people that live in your city and businesses who are doing cool things in your area (especially if they could act as a referrer of business!). It’s important to stay locally connected and network with people even if they’re not directly related to your industry; you never know when someone has a secret passion for something you offer or a need arises further down the line for your products and services. Local businesses can use social media to remain a fixture in their local online community and at their brick-and-mortal establishment.How do you leverage social media to grow your local business? Share your creative tactics in the comments!Image credit: alexliivet Originally published Jan 25, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 Social Media Marketing Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! 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The Ultimate Glossary: 44 Email Marketing Terms Marketers Must Know

first_imgEmail marketing is a central part of your inbound marketing strategy, but it can be an intimidating tactic to tackle if you’re a newbie. Heck, even seasoned email marketers are continually learning new terms (we learned some new ones for this post!) and must keep up to date with ever-changing laws that affect how you do your job. So we put together this glossary of email marketing terms that you can refer back to any time you wonder what they heck a blog post, your boss, or your ESP’s documentation is talking about.Download Now: Email Marketing Planning Template Email Marketing Glossary: 44 Terms to KnowAAcceptable Spam Report Rate – The rate at which you can be reported as SPAM without harming your sender reputation. Anything over 0.1% (1 report per 1000 emails) will get a warning.Acceptance Rate – The percentage of email messages that are accepted by the mail server. Just because an email is accepted by the mail server does not mean it will get to an inbox.BBlacklist – A list that denotes IP addresses as spammer IPs, impeding email deliverability.Bounce Rate – The rate at which your emails are not delivered. There are two types of bounces, hard and soft, both of which are defined later in this glossary. An acceptable bounce rate is less than 5%.Bulk Mail – Large scale email marketing sends in which the same content goes to a large group of people.CCAN-SPAM – Short for ‘Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography And Marketing Act of 2003,’ it’s a law that outlines rules for commercial email, establishes requirements for commercial messages, provides email recipients with the right to make you stop emailing them, and lays out consequences for violations of the Act. You can read more about compliance in our post about marketing laws.Clicks Per Delivered – A percentage measure of the number of clicks divided by the number of emails delivered to the intended inbox.Clicks Per Open – A percentage measure of the number of clicks divided by the number of opens.CPM (Cost Per Thousand) – In email marketing, CPM commonly refers to the cost per 1000 names on a given rental list. For example, a rental list priced at $250 CPM would mean that the list owner charges $.25 per email address. We’ll get into buying lists later in this post.CTR (Click-Through Rate) – The percentage (the number of unique clicks divided by the number that were opened) of recipients that click on a given URL in your email.Conversion Rate – The percentage of recipients who respond to your call-to-action in an email marketing campaign or promotion. This is one measure of your email campaign’s success.DDedicated IP – In email marketing, it refers to an IP address from which only you send email.Double Opt-In – The recommended method of building an email list, it requires subscribers to confirm their opt in by clicking a link in a confirmation email or responding to the confirmation email in some other way.EEmail Campaign – An email or series of lead nurturing emails designed to accomplish an overall marketing goal.Email Filter – A technique used to block email based on the sender, subject line, or content of an email.Email Sponsorships – Buying ad space in an email newsletter or sponsoring a specific article or series of articles. Advertisers pay to have their ad inserted into the body of the email.FFalse positive – A false positive occurs when a legitimate permission-based email is incorrectly filtered or blocked as spam.HHard Bounce – A hard bounce is the failed delivery of an email due to a permanent reason like a non-existent, invalid, or blocked email address.Honey Pot – A planted email address by organizations trying to combat spam that, when a spammer harvests and emails, identifies that sender as a spammer.House List (or Retention List) – One of your most valuable marketing assets, it’s a permission-based list that you built yourself with opt-in subscribers.HTML Email – Sending HTML email makes it possible to get creative with the design of your emails.IIP Warmup – Sending a progressively increasing number of emails out of an IP address in order to build the IP’s reputation.LLanding Page – A lead-capture page on your website that is linked to from an email to provide additional information directly related to products or services promoted in the email’s call-to-action.Levels of Authentication – A way of establishing a sender’s identity, and ensure the sender is allowed to send from a given domain.List Segmentation – Selecting a target audience or group of individuals for whom your email message is relevant. A segmented list means a more targeted and relevant email campaign, thus a higher response rate and less unsubscribes and spam reports.OOpen Rate – The percentage of emails opened in an email marketing campaign, or the percentage opened of the total number of emails sent.Opt-In (or Subscribe) – To opt-in or subscribe to an email list is to choose to receive email communications by supplying your email address to a particular company, website or individual thereby giving them permission to email you. The subscriber can often indicate areas of personal interest (e.g. mountain biking) and/or indicate what types of emails they wish to receive from the sender (e.g. newsletters).Opt-Out (or Unsubscribe) – When a subscribers chooses not to receive email communications from the sender anymore, and requests removal from your email list. It is legally required that you provide a clear way to opt out in every email you send.PPersonalization – Adding elements to your email that are personalized based on information you already know about them. It could refer to addressing the recipient by name, referencing past purchases, or other content unique to each recipient.Physical Address – The physical, street address of the company sending the email, usually found in the footer of an email. Its inclusion is a legal requirement for all email marketing.Plain Text Email – An email sent without HTML. You should always give your recipients the option to read emails in either HTML or plain text for better readability.Privacy Policy – A clear description of a website or company’s policy on the use of information collected from and about website visitors and what they do, and do not do, with the data.RRead or Open Length – A measure of the length of time a person opens the email until they close it.Rental List (or Acquisition List) – Not a recommended email marketing technique, it is a list of prospects or a targeted group of recipients who have opted in to receive information about certain subjects, usually targeted by something like interest, profession, or demographic information.SSender Score – A free service of Return Path, it’s a reputation rating from 0-100 for every outgoing mail server IP address. Mail servers will check your Sender Score before deciding what to do with your emails. A score of over 90 is good.Shared IP – A less costly option than a dedicated IP address, it is an IP address from which many people send emails.Signature File – A tagline or short block of text at the end of an email message that identifies the sender and provides additional information such as company name, physical address, and contact information.Single Opt-In – A single opt-in list is created when users sign up for email communications, but don’t confirm the action. This means they can be signed up for a list by someone else, and as such is not a recommended way to build a healthy email marketing list.Soft Bounce – A soft bounce is the failed delivery of an email due to a temporary issue, like a full mailbox or an unavailable server.Spam or UCE (Unsolicited Commercial Email) – Email sent to someone who has not opted-in or given permission to email to the sender. Over 90% of email sent is classified as spam.Spam Cop – A paid spam service that plants their own emails and monitors who harvests the address and spams it.Spam Trap – An email address that was once valid, but no longer is. If you email this address, you’ll receive a hard bounce notice. When the mail server sees consistent traffic going to the dead email, however, they can turn the email into a spam trap. It will stop returning a hard bounce for the known bad address, and instead accept the message and report the sender as a spammer.SPF – Short for ‘Sender Policy Framework’, it’s a DNS record that says on whose behalf an IP or domain sends email.WWhitelist – Instead of listing IP addresses to block, a whitelist includes IP addresses that have been approved to deliver email to a recipient.There is a lot marketers need to know about email marketing, and this glossary only scratches the surface. What other terms would you add to this list? Image credit: Horia Varlan Originally published Feb 17, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated October 30 2019 Email Marketing Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics:last_img read more

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How Dynamic Content Makes Your Marketing a Helluva Lot More Personal

first_img Smart Content Smart content leverages the valuable insights your visitors, leads, and customers have provided you with: their interests, preferences, and historical behavior. Make sure you put that knowledge to work by guiding and supporting your prospective customers with personalized content. Every potential buyer should be recognized as an individual with unique and evolving questions; smart content is one tool in your arsenal for creating marketing that’s more personalized and tailored to their needs. To learn more about smart content or get additional personalization ideas, take a look at my new ebook, An Introduction to Using Dynamic Content in Your Marketing .Image credit: sucamara The first time Amazon introduced me to the perfect book for me via their recommendation engine, I was completely awed. The idea that a website could not only recognize a return visitor, but also discern their interests and alter their site experience accordingly, felt like nothing short of magic.Since then, data-driven personalization has become more common, though not entirely pervasive in the marketing space — perhaps due to a lack of understanding around how it really works. I mean, just what drives all this highly adaptive content? And how does it affect a lead’s decision-making process? In this post, we’ll break down the concept of “smart” or “dynamic” content — that’s what all this personalization revolved around, after all — and explain what it is, how it works, and even give you some strategies for incorporating it into your marketing.  What is Smart Content? Also referred to as “dynamic” or “adaptive” content, smart content is a term for the aspects of a website, ad, or email body that change based on the interests or past behavior of the viewer. It creates an experience that’s customized specifically for the visitor or reader at that moment. One of the most well-known examples of smart content is Amazon’s recommendation engine, which we talked about in this post’s introduction. Other forms, however, range from personalization fields in emails to entire images or offers on a webpage that shift based on who is looking at them. How Smart Content Works  The key to dynamic content’s effectiveness is its relevancy. Research has repeatedly demonstrated that marketing that is targeted and more relevant to the end-recipient tends to see better results. For instance, relevant emails drive 18X more revenue than broadcast emails ( Jupiter Research ). Eighteen flippin’ times more revenue! And leads who are nurtured with targeted content produce a 20% increase in sales opportunities ( Annuitas Group ). That’s nothing to shake a stick at.Relevancy is all born from information. Not just demographic and contact information, but saved insights about the materials that have mattered to a particular lead or customer across their relationship with your company. That data then fuels the technology and set of rules that assigns the right content to the right person at the right time . Some of the technology involved includes: A Centralized Marketing Database:  Your marketing database is the brain behind your dynamic content. It stores your contacts’ download and interaction history with your site. A Smart Content Generator: Informed by the database, a smart content generator will show or hide content (blocks of images or text) based on rules you set.  Malleable Web Pages: A dynamic site has to be one that is easily editable and typically marketing-controlled, rather than run through another department like IT. An Integrated Email System: Extending smart content to the emails you send will require an email system that is tied into your contact database. Smart Content Marketing Strategies Now that you know what smart content is and how it works, you should use it all the time without discrimination.Just kidding. Actually, the bottom line with smart content is to make sure you’re purposeful and intentional about its use. Smart content should create a better experience for your leads and customers. When you’re integrating smart content of any sort into your marketing strategy, start with the question of how it will improve potential customers’ time on your site or with your emails. Here are a few places to start if you’re having trouble envisioning how to integrate smart content into your marketing. Eliminate Repeat Conversions If a website visitor has already downloaded a particular lead generation offer or purchased a particular item, use smart rules to remove that offer from their view. The result is two-fold: you’ll create a website or shopping experience that never gets old for your customers, and create an opportunity for you as a marketer to expose fresh offers and products that boost reconversions.  Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Sep 10, 2012 2:00:00 PM, updated July 28 2017 Tailor to Lead Lifecycle Stage If you’re new to the concept of “lifecycle stage,” it doesn’t mean whether the visitor is a senior citizen or college student. A lead’s lifecycle stage refers to how far along the visitor is in his or her decision-making process. Is this their first visit? Are they ready to buy? Are they still evaluating options? Taking what you know about how much experience a particular lead has can help you avoid over-selling to someone who is in the early stage of their research — or perhaps worse, missing out on an opportunity to sell to someone who is ready to make a purchase.We’ve talked a lot on this blog about mapping content to the stages of a potential customer’s buying cycle . This is typically done through a series of gradually evolving emails in a lead nurturing campaign. Smart content tools, like HubSpot’s smart CTAs , can also extend this adaptability to your website and landing pages.   Help Loyal Customers Skip Excess or Unnecessary Steps Many B2B companies offer content behind a form in order to generate leads. While this is a nice way to get to know new leads, it’s also a huge hassle for customers who may be interested in the content, but have already filled out your forms on a number of occasions. Rather than having a customer fill out yet another form, using smart or dynamic content can enable you to recognize a visitor as a customer, and give them a call-to-action that either minimizes the form fields or lets them bypass the download form entirely. Adapt to Reflect Different Industries or Personas Most companies serve a number of different personas from a variety of industries. While it may be difficult to tailor to every different industry you touch, dynamic content can help you create a highly customized experience for your highest-value industries.Start by talking with your sales team about the different personas or industries with whom they have had the best success. Then pick one or two industries to focus in on at first as a test. Use smart content to set a default, and then another set of images that reflect your top industry segments. In the example below, we’ve selected two images — one to represent the manufacturing industry, and another the healthcare industry. When anyone from those industries lands on a given page, this image will change to reflect that context. Topics:last_img read more

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Facebook Tests Pinterest-Style Feature Called ‘Collections’

first_img Pinterest Marketing As you can see, I’m prompted to add it to one of my Collections. I can either add it to one of the few that are pre-populated for me, or create a new Collection. When I add my reason for collecting it and click “Save,” the item becomes visible on my Facebook Timeline, as you can see below. Topics: Watch out, Pinterest. Facebook may be dishing out a little bit of competition. In case you were a little bit off the grid because of the Columbus Day holiday, on Monday the social network began testing a new feature called ‘Collections,’ which allows marketers to add “Want” or “Collect” buttons to news feed posts about products. According to TechCrunch, these posts save and share products to a “Wishlist” on Facebook users’ profiles, and feature a “Buy” button that users can click on to make purchases offsite. Facebook is testing the feature with 7 retail partners — Pottery Barn, Wayfair, Victoria’s Secret, Michael Kors, Neiman Marcus, Smith Optics, and Fab.com.Sounds a little bit like Pinterest, now doesn’t it? While Facebook claims the new feature is unrelated to the popular pinning site, we can’t help but think that Facebook is trying to nab a piece of the Pinterest pie. In the very least, it’s a noteworthy little blow.How Collections WorkAccording to Facebook, Collections posts can be discovered in users’ news feeds, and “people will be able to engage with these collections and share things they are interested in with their friends.”While only the 7 participating retailers can create a Collections post, 100% of Facebook users are able to interact with the posts. But with Facebook testing out different versions of the new feature, users may notice 1 of the 3 following call-to-action copy variations for the button that gets overlaid on the participating retailers’ Collections posts, showing each variation to a third of Facebook users to optimize for engagement:”Want”: adds the product to a Timeline section of a user’s profile called “Wishlist””Collect”: adds the item to a Collection called “Products””Like”: a special version of the standard “Like” button that also adds the item to “Products”But here’s the catch: While Collections are free for business pages to use, they’re only visible to the page’s fans. In other words, if I visit Pottery Barn’s page and I’m not a fan, I won’t see any of Pottery Barn’s Collections posts. I have to “Like” the page in order to see these types of posts.I decided to test these out for myself. You’ll notice in the examples below, I’m part of the third of Facebook users who is seeing the second copy variation, “Collect.”Here’s what happens when, as a fan, I click “Collect” on one of the items in Pottery Barn’s collection: Originally published Oct 10, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016center_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack I also have the option of changing my preferences for who can see the post. In the image above, it’s visible onto to me, but I can change this so that the post is visible to the public, friends, friends of friends, or members of specific people, lists, or networks I belong to. And if a user clicks on the “Antler Outdoor Pillow” link, they’re taken to the individual Pottery Barn post with the price, as seen below: Marketing TakeawayAny additional Facebook features meant to help marketers is obviously a win, and it’s easy to see how this one will be beneficial to retail and ecommerce marketers, even more so if Facebook decides to make promotion of Collections posts available in its advertising tool.That being said, the fact that Collections posts are only visible to Facebook fans also makes it critical for business pages using the feature to build up their fan base in order to get users to collect, share, and click through to their product pages.As for a possible Pinterest downfall? Who knows. From the marketer’s perspective, the new Facebook feature may offer a way to appeal to users who don’t have the desire to join a new social network like Pinterest but are still interested in curating their interests on a site they already frequent, like Facebook. Sounds like a marketing win to me!What do you think of Facebook’s new Collections? Will you experiment with it for your business page once Facebook rolls it out to all business pages?Image Credit: pj_vanflast_img read more

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5 Resolutions to Amplify Your Nonprofit’s 2013 Fundraising Strategy

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Nonprofit Fundraising Topics: Originally published Jan 2, 2013 12:30:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 A new year means a clean slate for your organization’s fundraising strategy. And while the celebrations may be over, that doesn’t mean there still isn’t time to make a new set of resolutions. So, in addition to eating less and working out more (hah, we’ll see how long that lasts) we thought up some resolutions that your nonprofit organization might want to write down for the coming year. And then, we wrote out some of the tips you’ll need to actually keep those resolutions.So without further ado, here are five resolutions that will help your organization through another, even more successful year of fundraising in 2013. Good luck!1) “I will send one email per month.” Keeping in touch with your constituents, whether they’re donors, fundraisers, or volunteers, is very important to your organization. But sending too many emails or direct mailers can sometimes be an annoyance. Consider emailing your constituents on a monthly basis. It’s often enough that you won’t overwhelm them with information, but will be just enough to keep them regularly engaged with your organization. But before you start emailing your list, you and your team will want to consider the following questions:What is the purpose of each email? Are you asking for donations? Updating volunteers on new opportunities? Inviting past participants to your next event? Sharing fundraising news or tips? Defining the purpose of each email will help give your reader a clearer call-to-action. Cramming several different topics into one email, on the other hand, is overwhelming and ineffective.How often are you sending out each type of email? Stagger when you send each type of email to keep things interesting. Of course, those emails that are time sensitive, such as an event invite, are first priority.What are the exact dates you’re sending each email? Mark every email on your team’s calendar to give yourselves recurring deadlines. This will also help you keep track of the types of emails you will be sending, and how often.If you need help starting 2013 on the right note with these action items, download these 35 free email templates to get started.2) “I will start blogging.”Blogging is one of the most effective ways to engage your audience and share your expertise around your mission and cause. Not only does it increase your SEO rank and position you as a thought leader, it’s also a great place to highlight your supporters throughout the year. Here are a few blog post ideas to consider:Highlight an outstanding donor, fundraiser, or volunteer each month.Post about your most recent fundraising campaign or event. Highlight how much was raised, how many individuals participated, and how it directly impacts your mission.Give your nonprofit a face; have your staff write a post about themselves and why/how they got involved with your organization.Share news related to your cause, such as stories from the field that show the impact of your supporter’s funds. Encourage your volunteers to guest post about their experiences, as well.Encourage your entire team to contribute on a monthly basis so you have fresh ideas and tons of available content for the future. Keep track of your upcoming blog posts with our free blog post schedule template.3) “I will incorporate Facebook into my next campaign.”67% of 20-35 year olds interacted with a nonprofit on Facebook in 2012, according to The Millennial Impact. Incorporating Facebook into your next fundraising campaign or event is a guaranteed way to interact with this younger demographic. If you don’t already have one, you can create a nonprofit Facebook page for your organization. You can alsoinclude social media buttons in your emails, as well as on your organization’s website, linking to your page. This will make it easy for your supporters to find and interact with you on Facebook and other social networks.If you want to get creative, you can run a contest on your Facebook page and ask supporters to post a video or simply write the reason why they support your cause on your page. You can pick your favorite, and dedicate a blog post and email to that individual. You can even create a Facebook event for your next fundraiser and ask attendees to virtually “check in” the day of. Be creative and test out different ideas to see what drives the most engagement.Tip: Images often get the most likes and shares out of any other media on Facebook, so don’t forget to leverage the myriad free design tools out there to create compelling social media visual content!4) “I will optimize my website’s navigation.” Many individuals are looking to your website for information on how to donate, volunteer, or participate in upcoming fundraising events. Having a clear and concise navigation will make finding this information easy for your constituents. Consider including the following in your website’s navigation bar:How to DonateVolunteer OpportunitiesUpcoming Event CalendarAbout Us (include your mission, a brief history of your organization, staff bios, and anything else you would want your network to know about your organization)Corporate Sponsorship Opportunities (if applicable)If you already have these in your navigation, great job! Just make sure you keep these pages up to date for future visitors.One Mission has a great example of a clear navigation bar, as well as a contrasting ‘Donate’ button, if you’re looking for some inspiration:5) “I will segment and nurture my donor list.”Your lifetime donors will be interested in different information than your brand new donors. By segmenting your list, you can tailor the types of content you’re sending to your different audiences. This will increase the likelihood the recipient will open, read, and enjoy your emails. Here are six segments to consider creating of your existing (and future) donor list:New Supporters – These are your first-time donors, fundraisers, volunteers, and members. Nurture them with educational materials about your organization’s mission, where and how funds are allocated, and how their support can make a difference to your organization over time.One-Time Donors – The majority of donors will only give once to your organization in their lifetime. These are the individuals you want to nurture right away and hopefully turn into recurring donors or fundraisers. If an individual hasn’t given a second time within three months of their first contribution, send them a customized email with other ways to get involved with your organization and include an option to donate again.Recurring Donors – Thank these donors often and in clever ways, such as a personalized video or directly on Twitter or Facebook. These donors are hard to find, but they are extremely loyal to your cause.Large Gift Donors – Do something special for these individuals, such as featuring them on your homepage or, if they want to remain anonymous, have your founder make a personal phone call to thank them. If you have the budget, throw an end of the year gala dinner for these constituents and your team.Old Donors – Keep communication with these individuals light and share only the really big news, like hitting your yearly fundraising goal, or launching a new campaign. Sparking engagement with these folks is always possible, but they may not want to hear from you on a monthly basis.Local Donors – Invite these individuals to smaller, in-person events, either at your office or at a local venue. You’ll be able to create a nice group of recurring donors and supporters who can spread the word throughout your community. They may even turn into superstar evangelists!Now, I know keeping resolutions can be challenging, but keeping even one of these in 2013 will make a huge difference to your fundraising efforts. Attracting new donors is a challenge for all nonprofits, and engaging them online can be your first step.  What other marketing resolutions have you made for your organization in 2013?Image credit: teapotqueenlast_img read more

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The Blog Editor’s Ultimate Guide to Managing Multiple Contributors

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics: Content Marketing Originally published Jan 30, 2013 9:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Want a more well-rounded and sufficiently fed business blog? The answer is simple — don’t do it all yourself! Okay, okay … easier said than done, right? But in all seriousness, a blog with multiple contributors results in a better blog overall.Think about it. Who do you think is better capable of writing a stellar post about email marketing for this blog: Someone on HubSpot’s marketing team who manages our social media presence, or someone on our team who manages our email and lead nurturing campaigns? Not only does having multiple blog contributors help you generate more blog content, but it also allows you to showcase the thought leadership and perspectives of your company’s various experts. Because everyone has a specialty, right?But managing a blog with multiple contributors is a whole different ballgame than having just one or two dedicated bloggers. Believe me: As editor of this very blog, I’m faced with the challenge of managing the contributions of the 30+ people (and growing) on our marketing team, as well as contributors from other parts of the company, and external contributors like guest bloggers — so I can attest to the fact that it’s no easy feat. And because the “How do you manage multiple contributors?” question is one I’ve been getting asked a lot lately, I thought I’d share with you some of the tools, processes, and tips and tricks I use to help make managing multiple contributors a lot more, well … manageable ;-)Encouraging Blog ContributionsOf course, all of this is moot if you don’t have multiple blog contributors to manage in the first place. And while this blog post will assume that you do have that challenge on your hands, I don’t want to gloss over the challenge of encouraging blog contributions in and of itself.So if you’re not quite at the point where you need to worry about effectively managing multiple contributors — but would like to get there someday — check out this comprehensive blog post about how to cultivate a content culture at your company instead. Then bookmark this post for when you’ve effectively cultivated a content culture and you’ve got a whole new challenge on your hands.Now onto some tips for successfully managing multiple contributors.Create and Implement a Written Style GuideMultiple contributors can be a great way to help you publish a lot more content and, thus, boost your blogging frequency. And considering the fact that an increased blogging frequency is shown to positively impact key metrics like blog traffic and leads, what blog manager wouldn’t mind having more content to work with?But any good blog manager knows that you can’t just automatically hit ‘Publish’ on any new blog post contribution you get. You also need to have an editing process in place to ensure that the content is up to snuff and that it aligns with your blog’s goals, style, tone of voice, etc. And let’s not undermine how much of a time suck editing can be, folks. I’ve seen editing others’ contributions take anywhere from 20 minutes to 4 hours. This is where a written style guide comes in handy. A written style guide serves as the commonly acknowledged authority to address contributors’ questions of grammar, spelling, punctuation, capitalization, and usage. As a result, creating and implementing a written style guide can save you a ton of time during the editing process, since the idea is that your contributors will be creating blog content with the style guide in mind — preventing you from having to do a lot during the editing process. One of the main goals of implementing a written style guide is to achieve consistency in the content you produce, so while you can follow an established style guide like the AP Stylebook, there’s also nothing wrong with creating your own house style guide to address any specific nuances you want your writers to be aware of. In fact, we recently created The Internet Marketing Written Style Guide in an attempt to cover all of the basics for online writing, and explain the best way to use the most common words and phrases unique to inbound marketers. It also provides some step-by-step guidance if you really do want to create a house style guide of your very own. Whether you use ours as is or modify it for your own business, just make sure your contributors know your style guide exists and that they’re required to follow it in their writing.Provide Training for Your ContributorsAnother thing that will save you time in the long run is to provide some upfront training about how contributors can write successful blog posts — for your blog in particular. They may know about some general blogging best practices, but every blog is unique, and your contributors should have a good idea of what makes a piece of content successful for your particular blog and its audience.It’s up to you to decide what makes most sense in terms of how you implement this training. Maybe it’s a group-style training session every few months. If you’re not adding new contributors too frequently, maybe it’s a one-on-one training session between you and your new contributor. Maybe you come up with a written training guide on your internal wiki including resources that every new contributor is required to read before they start blogging. Or perhaps it’s a combination of the above.Whatever you decide, I recommend including the following in your blog training:Your Written Style Guide: We just covered this, remember? ;-)Your Target Audience/Buyer Personas: Remind your bloggers who they should be writing for, and what your buyer personas’ specific problems, needs, and interests are so they can create blog content that directly appeals to the readers you’re trying to attract through your blog.Topic Selection Guidance: How should they go about selecting blog topics? Are there certain subjects they should focus on or avoid based on your goals and historical data about what works — and what doesn’t — on your blog? (We’ll discuss topic selection guidance more later in this post.)Your Blog’s Voice/Tone/Style: What tone of voice and writing style should your bloggers strive to achieve? Does your audience prefer a formal or more conversational tone? Should they crack a joke every once in a while?The Blog Editorial Process: How should bloggers work with you during the editorial process? Is there an editorial calendar they should work with? (More on this stuff later, too.) What deadlines should they adhere to? How will you implement feedback and revision cycles? Outline your editorial process so bloggers know what to expect and how to work with you.Other Nuances: Do you want your bloggers to cite data in a certain way? How should bloggers use and cite images and visuals in their content? Are there specific formatting guidelines you want them to follow? Keywords they should target, etc.?Sampling of Successful Blog Posts: Providing examples of awesome finished products will give contributors tangible evidence of what great contributions looks like. Use an Editorial Calendar (But Stay Agile)One of the best blogging tools I’ve come to rely on — particularly when it comes to managing multiple contributions — is my blog editorial calendar. If you aren’t already using one, go create one — or download ours for free — and start using it immediately.Not only does a blog editorial calendar enable you to plan out your blog content in alignment with your various blog goals such as search engine optimization, lead generation, and achieving any sort of topic balance, but it can also keep your contributors accountable for the content they commit to by establishing deadlines for drafts and content revisions.It’s up to you how much you want to involve your contributors in your calendar. My recommendation is to let them access it, but refrain from letting them edit it, which can easily be done by using something like a Google Doc for your editorial calendar. For example, our blog contributors can see when we have open slots to fill and what types of content we’re looking for to fill those holes. And once they commit to a certain time slot, they know they need to get us a draft at least three days ahead of time so we have time for feedback, revisions, and editing.One more thing worth noting about a blog editorial calendar: It shouldn’t be set in stone. Think of your editorial calendar as a working document. As long as you’re not pushing up deadlines for your contributors, it’s okay to move things around for the sake of staying agile. That means that if a contributor gets you their blog post three days ahead of their scheduled publish date and it needs no revisions, you should feel free to publish it sooner if it helps. This agile business blogging behavior also allows for you to capitalize on time-sensitive opportunities like newsjacking, which can’t ever be planned for ahead of time.Offer Topic GuidanceI’m going to let you in on a little secret folks: When it comes to writing a successful blog post, topic is everything. You can write the most amazing blog post in the world about a given topic, but if your readers don’t care about that topic, it’s not really going to help you achieve your blogging goals. As a result, helping your writers come up with great topics before they start writing is key to getting the most out of your blog contributions. It can also save you a whole lot of time in the editorial process. In addition to addressing some general topic selection do’s and don’ts in your initial blog training, here are some tips to help you ensure that every blog post is about a topic you approve of:Create a Blog Topic/Idea BacklogThe ideation process of blogging can be one of the toughest parts, and you might find that some of your bloggers would rather not have to come up with the ideas themselves. Spend some time brainstorming some great ready-made blog topics that contributors can choose from. You can even roll this up into your editorial calendar by pre-populating specific slots with topics that writers can claim.Ask Bloggers to Run Ideas by You FirstWhile you may have some contributors who appreciate not having to come up with topics on their own, you might also have contributors who hate “assignments.” We’ve found that it’s always best to encourage contributors to write about what they know and love, because it usually results in a much better blog post. That being said, we’ve also run into situations where a blogger spends their time writing about a topic that isn’t a great fit for our blog, and we don’t end up publishing it. That’s a big waste of time, isn’t it?The solution for this is simple: Give your bloggers the freedom to brainstorm their own topics, but require that they run their ideas by you first before they start writing. And instead of just running a blanket topic by you (e.g. “I’m going to write about social media marketing.”), ask them to get more specific by providing a working title (e.g. “X Ways to Measure the ROI of Your Social Media Marketing”) and a brief outline of what they’d cover in the post. This will allow you to guide your contributors toward topics that both appeal to your audience and help you accomplish your blogging goals. A lot of times, all bloggers need is some help tweaking the angle or making some outline modifications. Provide Editorial Feedback & Require RevisionsWhen it comes to the editorial process itself, you have one of two choices: Do all the editing yourself, or give your writers feedback on how to improve their contributions so they can revise the content themselves. There are pros and cons to each, and your decision may also depend on factors such as how much work a blog post needs to be ready for publishing, the amount of content you have to work with, and when you want to publish something. Here’s what I mean …Editing Content YourselfPro: The ability to turn content around quickly, rather than waiting around for the contributor to make revisionsCons: More time spent editing, and the missed opportunity of educating contributors about how their post could’ve been better — so they could ultimately become better bloggersProviding Feedback & Requiring Revisions Pro: Incrementally improving your contributors’ blogging ability over time, meaning an improvement in the overall quality of content and efficiency of your blog management processCon: A longer turnaround time as you craft your feedback and wait for contributors to make revisionsIf you’re really trying to improve your blog and the quality of the content you get from your contributors, I truly recommend going the feedback/revisions route. It’s the most effective long-term solution, and over time, you’ll see a big difference in the quality of your contributions and how much easier they are to prep for publishing.If time isn’t on your side and you absolutely must edit the content yourself, I recommend taking notes about what feedback you would’ve provided and saving the original article so you can show contributors the before and after versions. This way, they can still learn what would’ve made their original article better. You can either share this feedback over email, or sit down with them one-on-one after the fact if that’s more productive.Establish a System for Working With Guest BloggersWhile the prospect of other people blogging for you for free may sound like the best thing since sliced bread, working with guest bloggers can be tricky. Unless a guest blogger is going to become a regular contributor for your blog, it usually doesn’t make sense to spend the time to train them like you would one of your internal contributors. And with a lack of training, it’s less likely that a guest blogger will contribute something that really works for your blog. And you should never sacrifice the overall quality of your blog for the sake of accepting guest contributions. Rather, you should be holding that content to the same standards you would your internal contributions.If you’re open to the possibility of accepting guest contributions, I recommend pulling together a public-facing web page outlining your specific guest blogging guidelines. This will help you set expectations with guest bloggers from the start, provide them with some basic information they need to be successful, and outline any processes they should be aware of upfront. This will also save you the time of explaining your system to potential new guest bloggers, and help set them up for success. For an example of how these guest blogging guidelines might look, check out our own guidelines here.In addition, you might want to set some internal guidelines for working with guest bloggers to ensure the back and forth doesn’t become too much of a time-suck. For example, depending on your bandwidth, maybe you can’t afford to work with guest bloggers on feedback/revisions, giving them just one chance to get it right. Or maybe you limit feedback/revisions to one single round, and nothing more. Or maybe you only spend the time to work with guest bloggers who have a certain reach, relationship with your business, or industry leverage. Ultimately, it’s up to you; just make sure your system aligns with your other goals.For more detail about how to manage guest blogging contributions, read “How to Keep Guest Contributors From Ruining Your Blog.”The Final EditWhen it comes down to it, you or another dedicated member of your blogging team should be putting the finishing touches on all your blog contributions. And while you may have done your best to set your contributors up for success along the way, it’s likely you’ll still need to do some editing beyond just general proofreading, even after a round or two of feedback and revisions. I think this goes without saying, but make sure you’re editing the final version of any post with things like your blog’s tone and your written style guide in mind. Even though you’re giving your blog a variety of perspectives with your various blog contributors, you should still maintain a unified voice and style. Stay consistent, and make sure the final product practices what you preach.What other tips do you have for effectively managing multiple blog contributors? Share them in the comments below!last_img read more

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How Inbound Marketing Aligns With the New Purchase Loop

first_imgIn 1898, Elias St. Elmo Lewis developed the Purchase Funnel, the now familiar pathway customers travel from consideration to purchase. There are four steps in the process that have always been integral to every CMO’s approach to marketing: Awareness, Interest, Desire, Action. conducted by Latitude found Awareness Desire Inbound Marketing – At this stage, the consumer moves from initial interest to a research mentality to gain an understanding of the broad fundamentals in order to make a purchase the consumer can feel good about. on which they would find a whitepaper on, say, marketing automation – This step is an exponential progression from the Interest stage. The person moves from a “nice to have” mentality to a “must have” mentality. – A person becomes aware of the product either through advertising or the recommendation of a friend. the internet was integral to the process for three quarters of respondents. With that finding, one has to call into question the millions of dollars brands spend to “build awareness” when, clearly, every other medium is more heavily relied upon. Akin to the second step in the loop, this third step sees our vacationer understanding there are certain home safety-related steps they must take before they leave town. They know they need to inform their neighbors; they know they need to make sure their home alarm system is in working order; they know they need to arm themselves with home safety-related information — so after having downloaded and read your whitepaper, they would be receptive to the follow-up Image credits: The Role of Inbound Marketing – A piece of information, a news story, an article, or a friend’s recommendation acts as a catalyst, giving the consumer a reason to start looking into things the person wants or needs. – Following purchase, the consumer uses and experiences the purchase to decide how he or she feels. At this stage, they might post a product review or share their experience with friends. Topics: – The person puts desire into action and makes a purchase decision. The study identified six behavioral or mental states a buyer experiences when considering a purchase. effective SEO strategies Realized Want or Need inbound marketing 1) Openness ), but if they read an article about how the best way to hide things is in plain sight (or in places no one would ever think to look), they might become more open to the idea of considering such a product. 5) Research and Vetting linear — that a person can bounce from one stage to another as they make their way to final purchase. 4) Seeking Ideas and Inspiration This new purchase consideration track takes into consideration a person’s emotions, and understands the process How do you think the new purchase loop changes the way marketers do their jobs? program in place that generated SEO-friendly content which allows you to present a need, and also conveniently slip in a mention of your cheap but very effective solution. Here the vacationer realizes they will, in fact, be buying certain home safety products before they leave for vacation. Because you have determined their predilection for home safety products through the previous information they requested, you can offer them So, how does a marketer realign their tactics to better align with this new purchase consideration cycle? Put simply, your brand needs to be there when someone comes looking for a solution to the problem or need you serve. Let’s address what you as a CMO must have in place in each of the six stages when potential customers start looking. come into play. The person probably hasn’t come to the conclusion they need an electric socket that doubles and a place to hide valuables, but they do have general home safety concerns and don’t want their valuables at risk if their house is broken into while away. So they will be seeking broader home safety advice, and you want to be there via the right keywords, with a link to a product information page, blog post or Reliance on television, without surprise, has practically fallen off the map in terms of being a useful medium during the consideration process. 6) Post-Purchase Evaluation and Expansion email you would send them Openness The Purchase Funnel Learning and Education At this stage, a potential customer might not even know they need your product or service. But they are open to suggestions if they can be convinced there is a need. For example, a person may not know they need an electric socket that’s actually a security drawer to hide valuable items (yes, a product like that exists 2) Realized Want or Need – Here the consumers gathers information to support feelings of purchase intent. Options are compared, deals are sought, prices are compared, and reviews are read all to determine personal associations with the brand. Post-Purchase Evaluation and Expansion The 6 Behavioral and Mental States Involved in the New Purchase Loop 87% of consumers now travel a less linear, more complex pathway to final purchase. Because they bought from you and because they are in your Seeking Ideas and Inspiration progressive profiling on your landing pages Action – After having been made aware of the product or service and determining its relevance, the person expresses interest. Interest customized, relevant information – Here, the consumer seeks a solid reason to look for, notice, and keep track of examples, thought-starters, and motivators surrounding the product in question in order to take the next step. Here, because our vacationer seeks a solid reason to look for, notice, and keep track of examples, thought-starters, and motivators surrounding the idea of home safety, additional content assets would be helpful. Think things like case studies or testimonials from customers who had the misfortune of having their house broken into but, because they had your nifty electric socket hideaway, didn’t lose any of their valuables. And you would be able to send better targeted content assets, because you used The Top Ten Home Safety Concerns When Going on Vacation. How would they come to this conclusion? By reading a piece of content that addressed home safety — like a blog post with the five steps one should take before they leave for a month-long vacation. And how would they find this information? They’d find it from you, because as CMO, you would have an to deliver them information on the additional home safety products you offer, such as the in-wall oven that’s actually a heavy duty safe. Okay, that’s not actually a real product. At least not to my knowledge. recent study It’s extremely important to note that these six stages do not always occur in linear order. Rather, they align with the differing and not always logical state of human emotions that come into play during a purchase decision. But with proper inbound marketing tactics applied to each of the six stages, you’ll be well positioned to address the needs of your target audience, convert them into leads and, ultimately, into customers to drill down into what the vacationer’s more specific pain points were. lead management system In each of the six stages, the internet far outweighed all other media used during the purchase consideration process. In every stage except post-purchase, such as a report on the cost benefit analysis of various home safety products. Your product being the best choice for their needs — needs which you’ve gotten to know over the course of your interactions with them — leads to a purchase of your product. landing page isn’t Just 29% report relying on the medium even at the earliest stage. Research and Vetting Originally published Feb 8, 2013 2:00:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 – Consumers experience a receptiveness to new or better experiences, which results from pre-existing interest in or curiosity about a category or topic area. At this stage, it can be a conscious or unconscious desire for a brand. The study also took a look at the types of media used during each stage of the process. At this point, the person heading off on that month long vacation to Belize may have come to the realization that there are home safety concerns with which to contend. So they run off to Google and type in “home safety.” This is where While this purchase funnel has served marketers well over the years, a (since you collected their email address on the landing page) which offered another whitepaper or report that further explained the importance of home safety, and the steps they could take to achieve it. About.com Latitude Study , you can continue to market to them using 3) Learning and Education Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

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How 5 Companies Are Using Inbound Marketing to Succeed in Competitive Markets

first_img Inbound Marketing Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics: Originally published Apr 17, 2013 2:00:00 PM, updated April 18 2013 Rocky Balboa. Susan “I Dreamed a Dream” Boyle. The 1980 U.S. Men’s Olympic Hockey Team. What I’m trying to say is … no one can resist an underdog.Small businesses with limited marketing budgets have always been at a disadvantage against big-name competitors. When you’re the shop on the corner, good luck competing with corporations with quarterly marketing budgets larger than your entire annual revenue.At least, that’s how the story used to go. But watch out Goliath — David just got a slingshot. Inbound marketing helps level the playing field for marketers with less budget, and more brains. To show you just how effective inbound can be, we’ve identified some companies that are crushing it against larger competitors. You know, for a little inspiration. So grab your pom-poms and get ready to cheer on some underdog companies dominating giant competitors with inbound marketing.Main Line Family Law Center, LLC Earns National Media Attention With Keyword StrategyHusband-and-wife team Chris and Sharon Pastore of Havertown, PA founded Main Line Family Law Center, LLC in 2011 to provide painless legal assistance for couples going through separation and divorce. For clients, they summarize their goal as “restoring sanity and dignity to the divorce process.” The Pastores were a small business of only two people where the marketing and business management fell on Sharon’s shoulders.Divorce and separation can also be a very private process that clients would rather Google than ask a friend about. Sharon understood her clients’ desire for privacy, and focused her marketing on keyword strategy. She discovered people were searching “legal separation in PA” without seeing a lot of valuable content, so she started targeting that phrase and similar ones with blog content. The results paid off. Main Line Family Law reached a #1 rank for dozens of keywords, saw a 30% quarterly growth in web traffic, and because she used calls-to-action and landing pages to convert all that traffic, she saw a quarterly 30% lead growth, too.The wins didn’t stop there, either. When the Oprah Winfrey Network (Oprah, you guys!) was browsing for divorce and separation clients for a show, guess who came up on the search engine results page? Not a huge legal firm. Not Law.com, The New York Law Journal, or any other legal publications. Main Line Family Law came up.Main Line Family Law shows that no matter how big your business, understanding your customer’s online behavior and nailing down a persona-driven content strategy is incredibly important, and can drive Oprah-level results. (I’m going to try to make that a new form of measurement; I hope it catches on.)The Rodon Group Receives Presidential Recognition for an EbookThe Rodon Groupis a B2B third-generation family business that has manufactured small plastic parts and molds at a high volume since 1956. As one of the largest operation injection molders in the country and manufacturer of over 30 billion parts for K’NEX Brands (the famous toy construction brand), The Rodon Group hardly seems like an underdog. What gives? The Rodon Group now has to compete on a global scale, and U.S. manufacturing isn’t known for offering the best prices for high volume, small plastic parts in comparison to competitors in other countries. Many potential customers turn overseas before fully exploring the cost-effective options available in the U.S.The Rodon Group decided to address this problem head-on with its “Cheaper than China” campaign. The centerpiece of the campaign was an ebook titled “Top 10 Critical Reasons to Brign Your Plastic Injection Molding Back to the U.S.” that explained how The Rodon Group beat overseas pricing. Here’s a quick sample of some of that campaign’s content:This approach not only addressed a concern The Rodon Group’s potential customers were facing, but something the entire country was worried about. Their marketing messaging even earned the attention of President Obama, who personally flew to the plant in Hatfield, PA to deliver a speech.This wasn’t a campaign that The Rodon Group spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on. All they did was embrace inbound marketing by creating a content-based campaign that addressed customer concerns. It earned them an in-person endorsement for the President of the United States, not to mention coverage from top tier publications. Talk about powerful.Jackson Coffee Company Consistently Beats Corporate Giants With Email MarketingJackson Coffee Company is a Michigan-based coffee shop that describes their mission as simply “roasting and brewing really great coffee” since September 2006. The business has three locations in Jackson, MI, but no chains outside the city as of now.What makes Jackson Coffee Company so special? They have consistently won “Best Coffee House” awards in all the years from 2007-2012 against giants such as Starbucks, Dunkin’ Donuts, and McCafe as well as five other independent coffee houses. Even better? They report never having to explicitly ask their customers to vote.Sure, they focus on great coffee (read more about their coffee quality assurance methods, or the “J” way here), but Jackson Coffee Company emphasized email marketing to help drum up support. And instead of spamming the same list over and over with interruptive messaging, Jackson Coffee followed the make love, not spam email methodology by keeping multiple, separate lists for things like newsletters, or birthday promotions. Robert Ernst, the company’s social media manager, explains that keeping separate lists makes it easy to email customers at the frequency they prefer. While some customers prefer only an annual update for their birthday club cup of coffee, for instance, others want a more frequent update. To learn more about how to do email marketing right — who knows, maybe it’ll be what you need to reign supreme over a big industry competitor of your own — check out our free ebook that teaches you how to optimize your email marketing for conversions.Help Scout Builds Enterprise-Level Authority With Customer-Focused ContentHelp Scout is a B2B customer service software company founded in 2005 with seven full-time employees. While they started off in Nashville, they’re now our neighbors in Boston. Help Scout’s mission is focused on helping businesses deliver scalable, personal customer support. They take this mission so seriously that all of their job titles read “Customer Champion” — even the co-founders.There are some big fish in Help Scout’s pond. Heck, Zendesk has 25,000+ customers, including Disney — the leaders in magical customer experiences. With less manpower and marketing budget dollars comparatively, how does Help Scout get the word out?With fantastic content, of course! Help Scout knows that content is the fuel that feeds the inbound marketing machine, and it shows with their beautiful and comprehensive content, both on their own website and externally through guest blogging. Not only does this content help them build authority with their audience, but it attracts more than enough leads to sustain a steady 10% month-over-month growth rate without breaking the bank on advertising. According to business co-founder Nick Francis, Help Scout experienced a 678% growth in leads from August 2012 to February 2013.Feel free to explore Help Scout’s assets in a little more depth on your own, but I wanted to highlight two here for you — check out their Resources center and their company blog below — before we go into their guest blogging.Help Scout Marketing ResourcesHelp Scout Marketing BlogHelp Scout External ContentAlright, now a quick word on how Help Scout’s guest blogging program has helped them edge out bigger industry competitors. They’re active guest bloggers, reaching out to companies like Buffer (efficiency hack blog) to create content around simple ways to improve customer service. This content strategy exposes Help Scout to new audiences without breaking the bank, and further cements their credibility in a space where they aren’t the biggest provider. This content has helped them build trust with their audience, and as a result, they’ve seen a 265% increase in unique visitors from August 2012 through February 2013. They also saw a 678% growth in leads collected.Takk Takk Puts Icelandic Tourism on the Map With Social MediaClose your eyes and imagine you’re on a dream vacation anywhere in the world you want to be. Where did you go? A café in Paris with fresh croissants? A tropical beach with your toes in the sand?Wherever you chose, I’m willing to bet many didn’t jump right to Iceland. As nice as the country is, Iceland doesn’t naturally pop into people’s heads when they think vacation. Icelandic marketing agency Takk Takk, then, had a challenge — to put a small island in the middle of the ocean on the map for tourists. Enter the “Iceland Wants to Be Your Friend” campaign.Instead of broadcasting Iceland’s virtues on a website with generic pictures, Takk Takk went on a mission to befriend people via social media. Which means they had to have a brand people actually wanted to be friends with on social media. Creating marketing content so interesting and helpful that people actually seek it out for consumption? Interacting directly with people in a conversation instead of interrupting them with broadcasts? Sounds like inbound marketing to me! Takk Takk adopted a fun, silly voice on their social media accounts, landing pages, thank you pages, and emails — even in their calls-to-action. Check out the copy on their subscription CTA, for instance: The agency created a branded personality for the country of Iceland and kept it consistent across social and online platforms, too — even their source code had a bit of personality!Takk Takk carried over the voice of their campaign to social channels like Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and Vimeo, where they featured regular people enjoying their Icelandic vacations and connected tourists on who were visiting around the same time. Luckily, Takk Takk compiled their social media tips and execution from the campaign in a slideshow that is absolutely worth a view; my favorite takeaway was “Treat normal people like celebrities.”The results? The campaign started in 2009, and by 2012, tourist traffic at Iceland’s Keflavik International Airport broke records, with 2.4 million passengers, approximately 1/4 of whom were foreign tourists. Keep in mind, this all happened after the 2008 banking crisis and a volcanic eruption in Iceland. Iceland also just received a 2013 ranking from the World Economic Forum as the world’s most welcoming holiday destination, where part of the ranking relies on how welcome the population’s attitude seems toward foreign visitors — something embodied strongly in Takk Takk’s campaign.What’s your favorite underdog marketing story? Are you using any specific inbound marketing techniques you use to get the edge on your competitors? Tell us your stories in the comments section! We’d love to hear them.Image credit: istolethetvlast_img read more

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The Ultimate Resource for 2013 Inbound Marketing Stats and Charts [SlideShare]

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published May 20, 2013 9:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Inbound Marketing Data I love reading great writing, which is what we aim to deliver consistently on this blog. But sometimes you’re just looking for a compelling piece of data to plug into a presentation or support a point you’re making in your writing. Well, if that’s what you need today, then this post is for you.Here, we’ve compiled the ultimate resource of charts (86 of ’em in the SlideShare below!) and statistics from the recently released 2013 State of Inbound Marketing Report. Feel free to use this data in your own content, tweet the stats you find most interesting, or just enlighten yourself about the current state of inbound marketing.86 Revealing Charts From the 2013 State of Inbound Marketing Reportcenter_img 86 Revealing Charts From the 2013 State of Inbound Marketing Report from HubSpot All-in-one Marketing Software150+ Tweetable Stats About the Current State of Inbound MarketingThe Industry Reach of Inbound Marketing1) 60% of companies have adopted some element of the inbound marketing methodology into their overall strategy. Tweet This Stat2) 19% of marketers are unsure whether to characterize their marketing activities as inbound. Tweet This Stat3) Marketing agencies are the most advanced inbound marketing adaptors, with 73% implementing inbound strategies. Tweet This Stat4) B2B companies are early to embrace inbound marketing — 65% implemented inbound practices in 2013, while just 46% of B2C companies report doing inbound marketing. Tweet This Stat5) Only 41% of nonprofits report adopting inbound tactics for 2013. Tweet This Stat6) 81% of companies report some level of integration between inbound marketing and larger marketing goals. Tweet This Stat7) Only 5% of companies do not integrate inbound marketing with larger marketing goals. Tweet This Stat8) 45% of CEOs say inbound is completely integrated in their organization. Tweet This Stat9) Marketing agencies are much more integrated than their peers, with 49% completely integrated and 86% at least somewhat integrated. Tweet This Stat10) Agencies are 25% more likely to implement inbound marketing than marketers in general. Tweet This Stat11) B2B companies are much more likely to be completely integrated. 38% of B2B companies completely integrate inbound compared to just 27% of B2C companies. Tweet This Stat12) Just 21% of enterprise companies completely assimilate inbound marketing into a larger marketing strategy. Tweet This StatThe ROI of Inbound Marketing13) 41% of marketers say inbound marketing produced measurable ROI in 2013. Tweet This Stat14) 41% of CMOs/CEOs report that inbound generated the positive ROI they sought last year. Tweet This Stat15) More than half of marketing agencies (51%) reported positive ROI for their inbound marketing efforts in 2013. Tweet This Stat16) 34% of businesses cannot or do not calculate inbound marketing ROI in 2013. Tweet This Stat17) 15% of marketers tie their inbound results directly to either company revenue or customers/wins generated. Tweet This Stat18) 1/4 of marketers report their top challenge in 2013 is proving the ROI of their inbound marketing efforts. Tweet This Stat19) 30% of marketing agencies say proving the ROI of inbound marketing is their top challenge — 15% more than the industry at large. Tweet This StatMarketing Budgets20) 48% of marketers will increase their inbound marketing budget in 2013 — the 3rd year in a row inbound budgets are increasing at or near a 50% pace. Tweet This Stat21) 53% of CEOs/CMOs increased their 2013 inbound marketing budgets. Tweet This Stat22) Enterprise companies (200+ employees) increased their marketing budgets 17% more slowly than the larger population – at a rate of 42%. Tweet This Stat23) Past success at inbound marketing was the number one reason to change a budget in 2012 — a full 150% more likely to drive budgets allocations than any other reason. Tweet This Stat24) SEO and social media accounted for a combined 23% of all inbound budget allocations in 2013. Tweet This Stat25) Just 9% of marketers reduced their inbound budgets in 2013. Tweet This Stat26) 45% of B2B companies increased marketing budgets due to past inbound success. Tweet This Stat27) Outbound budgets continue their annual decline, amounting to just 23% of all marketing spending in 2013. Tweet This Stat28) Today, marketers allocate 34% of their overall budgets to inbound tactics — 11% more than they dedicate to outbound strategies, such as banners, PPC, and other tactics. Tweet This Stat29) 23% of marketers adjusted their 2013 budget because of the economy. Tweet This Stat30) 14% of all budget changes in 2013 were the result of a change in management. Tweet This Stat31) 20% of marketers report securing enough budget is their top 2013 challenge. Tweet This StatBusiness Blogging 32) 62% of marketers surveyed will blog in 2013. Tweet This Stat33) 82% of marketers who blog daily acquired a customer using their blog, as opposed to 57% of marketers who blog monthly — which, by itself, is still an impressive result. Tweet This Stat34) 79% of companies that have a blog report a positive ROI for inbound marketing this year. Tweet This Stat35) Blogs produced a new customer for 43% of marketers last year. Tweet This Stat36) Just 20% of companies without a blog reported ROI from inbound marketing in 2013. Tweet This Stat37) Blogging has enjoyed strong annual budget growth — 23% of marketers invested in blogs for 2013, a 9% increase from 2012. Tweet This Stat38) 9% of companies employ a full-time blogger. Tweet This Stat39) 43% of marketers generated a customer via their blog this year, and blogging requires roughly 9% of marketers’ total full-time staff dedications and 7% of their total budget. Tweet This Stat40) Blogs produce low-cost leads for 24% of the marketing community. Tweet This Stat41) While blogs require roughly 9% of marketers’ total full-time staff dedications, they also demand just 7% of marketers’ total budget outlay this year. Tweet This Stat42) 43% of marketers generated a customer via their blog with less than 10% of total time allocation. Tweet This StatContent Creation 43) 18% of marketers confirmed that developing quality content was their top priority in 2013. Tweet This Stat44) 11% of marketers say their top challenge in 2013 is targeting content for an international audience. Tweet This Stat45) 10% of companies have a dedicated marketer for content creation. Tweet This StatSearch Engine Optimization46) After four straight years of consistent SEO outlays, search engine allocations dropped 3% this year to 11% of marketers’ overall budgets. Tweet This Stat47) SEO delivered 14% of marketers’ total lead sources and 13% of all customers in 2013. Tweet This Stat48) SEO is the top channel for sales conversions, with 15% of marketers reporting it produces above average conversion rates in 2013. Tweet This Stat49) SEO is one of the top lead generation sources, with 25% of marketers finding it produces a below average cost per lead this year. Tweet This Stat50) 15% of marketers say SEO delivers above average sales conversions. Tweet This Stat51) 9% of companies have either a full-time SEO expert or blog lead. Tweet This Stat52) SEO consumes an average of 9% of marketers’ overall time, and its leads convert to sales at an industry leading 15% — 50% better than trade shows, the leading traditional marketing channel. Tweet This StatSocial Media Marketing53) Social media accounts for 14% of marketers’ total lead pipeline this year. Tweet This Stat54) 13% of marketers noted that social media generates above average lead conversion rates. Tweet This Stat55) 21% of marketers report that social media has become more important to their company over the past six months. Tweet This Stat56) Social media staffs more full-time employees than any other team –16% engage a full-time social media practitioner. Tweet This Stat57) Social media requires just 10% more effort, on average, than most traditional marketing roles. Tweet This Stat58) The 16% of marketers who dedicate their time to social media in 2013 will also deliver the highest proportion of leads, at 14%. Tweet This StatSocial Media Channel Conversions 59) 52% of all marketers generated a lead from Facebook in 2013. Tweet This Stat60) 74% said Facebook is important to their lead generation strategy in 2013. Tweet This Stat61) 43% of marketers generated a customer from LinkedIn in 2013. Tweet This Stat62) Company blogs produced a customer for 43% of marketers in 2013. Tweet This Stat63) 36% of markers found a new customer from Twitter this year. Tweet This Stat64) A relatively new channel, Google+ delivered customers for 15% of marketers this year. Tweet This Stat65) In 2013, 9% of marketers sourced a customer from Pinterest. Tweet This Stat66) Social media budgets grew 9% in 2013, to 23% of all marketing allocations. Tweet This Stat67) Agency firms’ social media conversions are 41% better than industry averages — 17% of agencies reported above average social conversions in 2013. Tweet This StatEmail Marketing 68) Only 27% of marketers bought an email list this year. Tweet This Stat69) Of the marketers who bought an email list in 2013, just 9% said it was very effective. Tweet This Stat70) Email marketing as a  channel was the third overall lead gen source for marketers in 2013, producing 13% of all leads. Tweet This Stat71) Email marketing produced above average lead conversions for 27% of marketers in 2013. Tweet This Stat72) 11% of companies employ a dedicated email marketer. Tweet This StatWebsite Conversion73) The average 2013 website conversion rate is10%, industry-wide. Tweet This Stat74) Inbound marketers’ average website conversion is double the rate of non-inbound marketers — 12% vs. 6%. Tweet This Stat75) The average website conversion rate for small companies is 8%. Tweet This Stat76) The average website conversion rate for medium-sized companies is13%. Tweet This Stat77) The average website conversion rate for enterprise companies (with 200+ employees) is 10%. Tweet This Stat78) The average B2B website conversion rate is 9%. Tweet This Stat79) The average B2C website conversion rate is 8%. Tweet This StatLead Generation80) 20% of marketers say increasing total lead volume is their top priority this year. Tweet This Stat81) 22% of marketers say converting leads into customers is their top marketing priority for 2013. Tweet This Stat82) 34% of the leads marketers generate in 2013 come from inbound marketing sources — vs. 22% from outbound. Tweet This Stat83) Inbound marketing delivers 54% more leads into the marketing funnel than traditional outbound leads. Tweet This Stat84) Traditional methods to source leads and customers generate just 22% of all leads in 2013. Tweet This Stat85) Top lead generation sources include social media and SEO, each contributing 14% of marketers’ total pipeline in 2013. Tweet This Stat86) PPC accounted for just 6% of all leads for marketers in 2013. Tweet This Stat 87) Trade shows and direct mail each provide just 8% of all leads for the 2013 marketing funnel. Tweet This Stat88) Traditional marketing contributes 6% of all leads for marketers in 2013. Tweet This Stat89) 17% of marketers indicate that traditional marketing has become less important over the past six months. Tweet This StatCost per Lead90) Twice as many marketers say inbound delivers a below average cost per lead vs. outbound strategies (8% vs. 4%). Tweet This Stat91) 27% of marketers report that social media produced below average lead costs in 2013. Tweet This Stat92) 27% of marketers report that email marketing produces a below average total cost per lead. Tweet This Stat93) 25% of marketers report that SEO provides a below average cost per lead. Tweet This Stat94) 24% of marketers report that blogs deliver a below average cost per lead. Tweet This Stat95) U.S. inbound marketers spending more than $25K per year saved an average of 13% in overall cost per lead (CPL) in 2013, for an average CPL of $36 vs. $41. Tweet This Stat96) The average B2B cost per lead is $43*. Tweet This Stat97) The average B2C cost per lead is $15*. Tweet This Stat98) The average cost per lead for marketers with a formal sales agreement is $24*. Tweet This Stat99) The average cost per lead for marketers without a formal sales agreement is $49*. Tweet This Stat100) 16% of marketers cite industry conferences as producing an above average cost per lead. Tweet This Stat101) 27% of B2B marketers indicate that email also produces below average lead costs. Tweet This Stat102) 28% of tech firms report that trade shows top out lead costs. Tweet This Stat* (Note: This data includes marketers who reported $0 CPL, which may skew the data.)Cost per Customer103) U.S. inbound marketers spending more than $25K per year saved $14 dollars for every new customer acquired vs. those relying on outbound strategies — $254 vs. $268. Tweet This Stat104) The average cost per customer for enterprise companies with a formal marketing-sales agreement is $291*. Tweet This Stat105) The average B2B cost per customer is $264*. Tweet This Stat106) The average B2C cost per customer is $149*. Tweet This Stat* (Note: This data includes marketers who reported $0 cost per customer, which may skew the data.)Lead Scoring 107) 67% of marketers rate lead scoring as important to their strategic success. Tweet This Stat108) 72% of C-level marketers said lead scoring was important to achieving marketing goals. Tweet This Stat109) 75% of international marketers say lead scoring is important to their marketing strategy — and 41% find lead scoring very important. Tweet This StatMarketing Testing 110) 45% of marketers do not test their inbound marketing campaigns. Tweet This Stat111) 21% of marketers do not know if they test or not. Tweet This Stat112) Over 2/3 of all inbound strategies will not be effectively tested in 2013. Tweet This Stat113) Just 3% of inbound marketers test all the time. Tweet This Stat114) Companies that test are 75% more likely to show ROI for inbound marketing than those that ignore testing. Tweet This Stat115) 36% of testing marketers report monthly testing campaigns. Tweet This Stat116) 28% of marketers testing their campaigns do it less than monthly. Tweet This Stat117) 51% of executives test at least monthly to improve inbound results. Tweet This Stat118) 20% of marketers use A/B testing. Tweet This StatAudience Targeting/Persona Focus 119) 50% of marketers consider their companies to be primarily customer focused. Tweet This Stat120) Nearly 25% of marketers say reaching the right audience is their top priority for 2013. Tweet This Stat121) B2C companies were 20% more likely to be customer focused than their B2B counterparts (59% vs. 47%). Tweet This StatMarketing Focus and Goals 122) 15% of companies are primarily focusing on their products in 2013. Tweet This Stat123) 13% of marketers say they are primarily sales focused. Tweet This Stat124) Nearly 70% of marketing-focused companies implemented inbound marketing strategies, as opposed to 60% of customer-focused companies. Tweet This Stat125) 49% of marketing-focused companies say they achieved positive ROI from inbound marketing. Tweet This Stat126) Just 38% of sales-focused companies reported positive inbound marketing ROI for 2013. Tweet This StatWorking With Sales and Executives127) Only 17% of sales teams fully support their company’s inbound marketing efforts. Tweet This Stat128) Just 18% of CEOs report they provide significant support for inbound marketing initiatives. Tweet This Stat129) Just 9% of C-level teams at companies with 200+ employees fully support inbound campaigns. Tweet This Stat130) Just 14% of B2B sales teams support B2B inbound efforts. Tweet This Stat131) 24% of companies have a formal handoff between their marketing and sales teams. Tweet This Stat132) 73% of the companies that reported a formal marketing-sales agreement are engaged in inbound marketing in 2013, as opposed to 50% with no defined lead handoff. Tweet This Stat133) Adopting a marketing-sales agreement saves enterprise companies an average of $195.84 in total cost per customer. Tweet This Stat134) 47% of CEO/CMOs say their firms do not have a formal marketing-sales handoff. Tweet This Stat135) 37% of enterprise companies have formal agreements with their sales teams. Tweet This Stat136) 37% of enterprise marketers have yet to establish formal contracts with their sales teams. Tweet This Stat137) Technology firms — where the term service level agreement (SLA) originated — report that 40% of their teams have formalized marketing-sales agreements. Tweet This Stat138) Only 17% of sales teams and 11% of company executives lend their full support (in terms of budget, resources, or political capital) to inbound marketing efforts. Tweet This Stat139) B2B companies are 8% more likely to delineate marketing-sales obligations than B2C companies. Tweet This StatMarketing Technology 140) 46% of marketers use Google Analytics’ free reporting. Tweet This Stat141) 18% of marketers say finding tools to accurately measure ROI is a major challenge of their technology systems. Tweet This Stat142) 20% of C-suite marketers said using technology to gauge ROI is their principle technology concern. Tweet This Stat143) Despite the impending big data influx, just 15% of marketers’ say their top tech concern is managing all their data. Tweet This Stat144) 16% of marketers say that controlling technology is the most significant challenge they face in 2013. Tweet This Stat145) B2C companies spend slightly more time than average fighting with technology — 19% versus the 15% average. Tweet This Stat146) 24% of marketers say their IT teams provide the least support for inbound marketing efforts. Tweet This Stat147) 26% of B2B tech groups impede inbound efforts, vs. 20% for B2C companies. Tweet This Stat148) 31% of marketers in enterprise companies indicate a lack of support from their IT teams. Tweet This StatMarketing Hiring 149) Hiring top talent is the top challenge for 9% of marketers, while 8% say it’s training their teams. Tweet This Stat150) Most marketing teams will at least double by the end of the year. Tweet This Stat151) Inbound marketers plan to hire an average of 9.3 people this year — 125% more growth than teams not executing inbound marketing. Tweet This Stat152) On average, marketers plan to hire 4.5 team members in 2013. Tweet This Stat153) Enterprise companies expect the most personnel growth, citing plans to hire an average of 18.6 full-time marketers this year. Tweet This StatMarketing Staffing154) 81% of all marketers work in teams of fewer than 6 people. Tweet This Stat155) This small team environment is pervasive at every level — 31% of companies with 200+ employees still work in 5-person teams or fewer. Tweet This Stat156) International marketers also operate with smaller staffs — 50% work in small teams of 1-5. Tweet This Stat157) Nearly 30% of marketers don’t even have one full-time marketer dedicated to inbound. Tweet This Stat158) 6% of marketers continue to dedicate time exclusively to each trade shows, direct mail, and telemarketing. Tweet This StatWhich statistics surprised you the most? 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