Email Marketing: What Do They Know That You Don’t Know?

Email Marketing2A new study of small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) reveals that these firms are spending the largest portion of their marketing budgets on email marketing, and far less on social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook.

Over 600 email marketing decision makers at companies with annual revenues between $1-50 million and less than 1,000 employees were surveyed. It was discovered that 15 percent of the marketing budget of these businesses is spent on email marketing, ahead of events and trade shows (14 percent), person-to-person contact (13 percent) and print ads (11 percent).

The most interesting aspect of this study for me was that just 8 percent of their budgets were spent on social media, tying for sixth place overall with search engine optimization (SEO). My email marketing clients benefit from integration with social media, which contributes to their search engine rankings, so our Best Practices actually incorporate both these items at almost no additional cost to our clients. Win-win!

Here’s a breakdown of spending on marketing, as revealed by the survey: (more…)

Online Reputation Management

Online Reputation ManagementOne of my favorite quotes about online reputation management is by Tyler Tervooren: “Even if you opt out of participating in the digital world, your online identity still exists in parallel; you’re just not in charge of it.” Basically, it comes down to this: Refusing to acknowledge that people are talking about you does not make that talk go away. And if that talk is negative or inaccurate or untruthful, you have, essentially, decided to allow others to decide who you are and what your brand represents.

Whether due to time constraints, or not knowing enough about how online marketing differs from traditional media, or an inability to keep up with the ever-changing world of online marketing – monitoring online channels is not something the average business professional can reliably do on their own. Many try, only to find sooner rather than later that neither they nor their staff have the time and expertise necessary to develop the Know-Like-Trust factor that leads fans, followers and other online connections to be converted into buyers.

Understanding those challenges is what led me to transform my own business from a general sales and marketing consulting firm to one focused exclusively on branding through social media, online, and email marketing.

Managing Your Online Reputation

There are two equally bad responses to negative online feedback: (more…)

What You Need to Know About Search Engine Optimization NOW

SEOI get so many questions about search engine optimization (SEO) and, frankly, some have found it hard to take my advice (since I am not and don’t profess to be an SEO expert):

“Stop focusing on technology. Focus on people, and the search engines will find (and love) you.”

There are loads of “techie” articles out there saying the same thing (yes, I can be a bit of a tech geek sometimes), but I hesitate to recommend them to my less-than-enamored-of-technology clients and colleagues, for fear of having their eyes glaze over in the first paragraph. But here’s (more…)

Are You Blogging? Or Just “BLAH-ging”?

Charlie Brown's TeacherI posted an entry last week about making your blog the “hub” of your online marketing efforts – and it really seemed to strike a chord with many of my blog and eNewsletter subscribers. But the resounding question remains, “What am I supposed to blog about?”

Remember the sound of Charlie Brown’s teacher in the Peanuts cartoon specials? Yeah. You don’t want to be her.

In order to engage an audience on an ongoing basis (more…)