Essential Social Media Trends for Brands in 2015

2014 was a prolific and interesting year for digital marketers, with social media hits reached unprecedented heights. From selfies (and group selfies) going viral to campaigns like the #IceBucketChallenge and #BringBackOurGirls, and of course the #Bendgate hullabaloo – there were a lot of examples which marketers can learn from.

things you didnt know about social media

Looking back and analyzing the big events in social media last year, we can see some trends that will be big this year.

If you’re looking to make a splash in 2015, here are some essential social media trends for brands. [Read more…]

5 Ways to Make Customers Part of Your Marketing Strategy

plan1

marketing1

Steve Jobs famously said, “You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them.” When it comes to envisioning new products, he might have been right — customers don’t always know what they want until you show it to them. However, marketing is different. It’s about building relationships. If you expect a relationship to succeed, you have to listen to what the other person wants.

As a marketer, you can model potential customer buying paths, but guess what? Your customers may or may not comply with them. Perhaps it’s time to stop modeling and start asking them what they want. They just might end up doing your marketing for you. [Read more…]

3 Signs That You Shouldn’t Do a Twitter Q&A

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Dr. Mehmet Oz, host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” just been skewered by the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection for promoting bogus weight loss supplements. He’d also been ridiculed on HBO’s “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver” in a segment that received over 5.4 million YouTube views. Even worse, every social media marketer had seen the #AskJenny debacle, in which former “The View” host Jenny McCarthy had been mocked for her quacky medical views. To connect with the audience, Dr. Oz’s social media team scheduled a Twitter Q&A with the hashtag #OzsInbox. It didn’t go well. In fact, it became one of Twitter’s most epic fails.

When they’re done well, scheduled at the right time, and handled by an experienced social marketing team, Twitter Q&As can be great for a brand. When they’re handled poorly or scheduled at the wrong time, they turn into public relations disasters. Twitter Q&As aren’t a great way to rebuild positive feelings around a struggling brand. If your organization is facing one of these scenarios, you should skip the Twitter chat. [Read more…]

5 Tips to Make a Video That Will Help Your Blog Stand Out

tips to make a video

These days, there are tons of blogs for almost any topic you can think of. What sets one blog apart from another is how connects with the intended audience.

Did you know that adding video to your blog can make that connection much more effective?

tips to make a video

Consider the fact that in a recent report put out by Video Statistics: The Marketer’s Summary 2014, 93% of marketers use video for online marketing, sales, or communication. They also report that in December 2013, Americans watched 52.4 billion online videos. People are drawn to video, and when done right, video can set your blog apart, increase traffic, boost SEO and create loyal viewers. [Read more…]

Increase Traffic to Your Blog By Creating an Events Calendar

increase blog traffic events calendar

increase blog traffic events calendar

Why do you blog? Why did you start a blog in the first place?

You might have been an early adapter, with the idea of starting a blog purely for your own pleasure, but have reached the point where you want to make some money out of it. Or maybe you started a blog with monetization in mind from the get go.

Whichever the case may be, one critical element in creating a successful, profitable blog is to have a significant amount of traffic coming to your site every day. Not only that, you want the traffic to constantly grow from month to month.

With the proliferation of blogs today, it may not be that easy to garner as much traffic as you want; and unless you take certain steps to attract visitors – new and recurring – you probably won’t reach your goals.

One way to increase blog traffic is to create an events calendar. [Read more…]

5 Tips on Picking a Niche That Will Make You Successful

tips on picking a niche

Editor’s note: This post was written by Chris Lee, a full time blogger teaching all the secrets to success over at aBlogOnBlogging.com.

tips on picking a niche

Throughout my career as a blogger, I’ve started many blogs in many different niches.

I’ve lost count after my 6th or 7th blog but if I have to guess, I’d say I’ve started around blogs in 10 different niches or so.

I just couldn’t understand why I get so bored with my niche after a few weeks of blogging on the subject.

But finally, after leaving a long trail of abandoned blogs on the world wide web, I’ve finally learned how to pick niches that really work – and that’s what I’ve got for you today. [Read more…]

12 Best Apps for Your Blogging Business

best business apps

best business apps

Whether you are a businessman or an entrepreneurial blogger who has built a business blogging and/or freelance writing, there are some applications that are an irreplaceable part of your collection of business apps. Every year we see tons of new software overwhelming the online market, so it may be difficult to choose the right piece of software for your needs.

With this post we aim to help those of you who are still looking for new apps to add to your toolbox.  To make your workflow easier, here are 12 of the best business apps we think you should have. [Read more…]

4 Ways Your Internal Blog Can Help with Project Management

Multi-Ethnc Group of People in a Meeting and Success Concepts

Multi-Ethnc Group of People in a Meeting and Success Concepts

Project Portfolio Management (PPM) is a complex yet necessary system/tool for many businesses. However, much of the time it’s only the IT team and a few select “techies” at a business that really understand why a technology was selected, how it works, how it will benefit different departments, and the like. There’s a lot of jargon involved, and it’s easy to forget that some of the most important users (like the CEO) aren’t going to want to fess up to not knowing what customer configured applications are. Luckily there’s a way to introduce PPM and dynamic applications to even the least tech savvy in the crowd (or business): Your internal company blog.

Don’t forget that your major platform for sharing information (your blog) isn’t just for your customers. It can also be used to encourage communication between departments and within your company. The tech team might jump at the chance to provide a flow chart, presentation or training session, but these aren’t always conducive to more informal “talks” on blogs. Plus, they can be intimidating if anyone (or most people!) feel like everyone “get it” but them.

Here are a few ways to introduce your latest PPM technology to everyone who need to know about it with your blog, regardless of their tech prowess: [Read more…]

Algorithms and Auto-Captions: Tips for Keeping Up with Google

tips for keeping up with google

The folks at Google refuse to rest until search functions online have been perfected. As perfection is impossible to achieve, webmasters and business owners should get accustomed to Google rocking their world on occasion with new or updated algorithms and codes. Google rolls out a number of small changes on a weekly basis that tend to go unnoticed by the general public. However, when the Silicon Valley giant bothers to announce an algorithm change it usually means massive alterations are coming.

tips for keeping up with google

Such was the case with the release of Panda and Penguin in 2011 and 2012, respectively. Over the course of the last 11 years, Google has rolled out new fewer than 30 brand-new or updated algorithms that have altered the state of search on the Internet (view all Google updates since 2003 here). As it stands today, people maintain a tight focus on the Panda, Hummingbird, and Pigeon updates. What impact have these algorithms had, and why do they matter in today’s SEO climate?

Here are tips for keeping up with Google. [Read more…]