The Real Truth About SEO Success

SEOLet’s be honest, on the ladder of trustworthiness, search engine consultants fall somewhere between lawyers and members of Congress.

But nobody seeks us out at parties for our stories or makes Netflix shows set in the world of SEO.

No, instead you have two choices when it comes to SEO.

You’re either the nerdy Poindexter, sitting alone at his computer, muttering about meta descriptions and H1 tags, or worse, a snake oil salesman, promising the world that if you’ll just spend thousands of dollars on some magic formula that never quite seems to be finished, you’ll win the Internet. [Read more...]

Three Fundamentals of Facebook Marketing

Facebook MarketingWith a sixth of our planet currently on Facebook, you don’t need any introduction to the Big Daddy of social media that single handedly (well, almost) made brands rethink their marketing strategies and fork out their marketing dollars.

Yes, yes, Mark Zuckerberg is a genius.

But if you’re using Facebook marketing, you’re pretty smart yourself. And you’re in good company.

Here’s what the bean counters tell us:

“Sixty-five percent of marketers cited an increased social media budget in 2013.” ~ Nielsen

??Ninety-three percent of US companies use social media to promote their business.” ~ FastCompany

Step 1: You have set up a brand page for your business on Facebook.

Step 2: You have also started posting updates about your product/service on Facebook.

But, are people listening to you? Do you have fans engaging in conversation with your brand? Do your fans just sit there on your page or do they actually contribute to your bottom-line?

Let’s understand how to get the basics right and then we’ll move on to how you can make the most of your Facebook page: [Read more...]

If You Have a Blog, Do You Really Need an Email Newsletter?

newsletterBy Bob Dunn

Developing rich, useful online content is hard work.

If you are a solopreneur or small business owner, often that task falls squarely on your shoulders.

But, you say, I only have so much time.

You may have decided you can manage a blog or a newsletter, but not both.

Let’s look closer at these two options. [Read more...]

Heat Maps, FeedBlitz, and You

heat mapsBy Laura Petrolino

Is it hot in here, or is it just my email?

The secret fantasy of anyone involved in content and email marketing is to be able to really get inside the head of their consumers and understand interests, motivations, and needs.

To do this, we employ many different methods: We create buyer personas, use Google Analytics, and sometimes utilize things like focus groups and surveys.

Another very effective tool to gain important intelligence on the thoughts of your market, specifically those potential leads, receiving and reading your emails, is heat maps.

Real time heat map analytics are available for every email you send through Feedblitz. [Read more...]

CASL: The New Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation

CASLBy Hessie Jones

What’s going to turn the communications industry upside down in Canada and beyond?

CASL: The New Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation that takes effect July 1, 2014.

I’ve worked in the direct marketing industry since the early 90′s so I am aware of proper list building, proper opt-in, and disclosure on owned lists as well as purchased lists.

Then when email came along, permission marketing brought yet another level of complexity that marketers had to adhere to. [Read more...]

Your Headline Sucks (and Four Other Reasons No One Reads Your Blog)

headlineI know that headline you just read sounds a little ?á rude. Maybe even mean-spirited. But really, I don’t mean it that way. I want to help.

See, I’ve been writing blogs for quite awhile??nearly seven years. And I’ve been reading blogs for even longer.

Over time, I’ve developed an eye for some of the things that work, and some of the things that don’t.

And as I look around the blogosphere, I see a lot of the things that don’t work.

Here’s a look at a few of the mistakes I see bloggers making over and over again: [Read more...]

The Dating Game of Online Content

The Dating Game of Online ContentBy Karen Wilson

Do you remember what it’s like to be mutually “in like” for the first time? You click with the person so well that you want to see and talk to each other all the time. The connection is so strong that you feel like you’ve found THE ONE!

Fast forward a few months and things are still somewhat rosy, but you’re starting to see the not-so-perfect side of this human being, but it’s okay because they have so many positives you can overlook it. Besides, humans are imperfect.

Time moves on and things change. The tarnish really starts to show. Maybe they change. Maybe you change. Maybe you just get to know them better. Either way, you hit that stage where staying together becomes a conscious decision you have to make. [Read more...]

Candle in the Dark: How Unsatisfied Customers Help Business Growth

customersBy Sookie Lioncourt

The most significant aspect of any business is its consumer base.

Without them, your business will not generate any income. But, if you have customers – chances are, you’ll also have unhappy customers. Unless you’re perfect. Which, let’s face it, no one is.

Unhappy customers (whether it is product related, price related or customer-service related) can be very challenging to handle, especially when they are active online.

But, just because they aren’t satisfied with your services does not necessarily mean that you can’t turn them around. Dissatisfied customers can be your most valuable assets.

Below, we’ll discuss how you can benefit from your discontented customers. [Read more...]

Cop Out of Content Creation With 10 Great Content Curation Tools


By Sharon Hurley Hall

Have you started curating content yet? Content curation has become an important part of the content marketing mix and it seems that everyone’s doing it. It’s a way to collect what’s most interesting about a topic and share it with others.

It might seem a cop-out to make your mark with other people’s content (and yes, let’s face it, it’s a way to connect with your target audience without having to do the heavy lifting of creating all the content yourself).

But there are lots of different ways to curate content, as Moz points out, and in the best case, you can add value to the content you collect with your own commentary.

In this roundup I’ll bypass those that are simply aggregators to focus on tools that allow you to add your own insight. Here they are: [Read more...]

Marketing: The Darth Vader Approach

marketingBy Laura Petrolino

What can an epic villain teach us about marketing? How dare you doubt the powers of the Dark Side!? (Cue Star Wars theme?á)

Consider that the first Star Wars movie was made in 1977. Now, say ?ªDarth Vader’. There’s immediately a very clear image, right?

From his humble beginnings back in the 70′s to today, world wide, across all ages, cultures, and socio-economic levels, the Darth Vader brand remains clear, consistent and strong.

In fact, the marketing and brand consistency is, well, out of this world! [Read more...]