Although Vine is owned by Twitter, you can still share your content from the site to other social networks. In fact, the platform just recently announced a new share screen that contains a handful of updates to their sharing functionality, like the ability to send Vines directly to Tumblr.
7. Text updates
You don’t always need to share photos, videos or links with your audience.
Sometimes regular text updates will yield better engagement.
One example of a brand with great text updates is Denny’s Diner. The brand often garners incredible engagement on posts that are strictly text.
Guest Author: Michael Patterson is a digital marketing specialist at Sprout Social, a social media management platform for business. He enjoys writing about social media and how users can optimize their efforts for long-term success.
For learning…networking or the chance to expand your mind and find some inspiration?
Maybe you want to escape the office cubicle for a couple of days or find some company after working from the home office for weeks on end.
These conferences can be large, medium or small.
We have all been to those big events. 10,000 people, booths where sales people are desperate to have that conversation with you about the features and benefits.
Others have the cubicle stocked with stunning models for hire that fake sincerity….usually very well.
Some events disappoint, others amaze and some are just worth attending because of the location. I don’t know if Las Vegas ticks that box. I went there recently…it reminded me of a shopping centre on steroids with slot machines as the main show.
For me it is the the people that you meet, and the ideas and insights that you share.
Weak ties to strong connections
It takes those weak social media connections and turns them into strong ties. The ones that turn into lifetime friends. The others that become a major business opportunity.
Getting out of your comfort zone, being open to change and challenging your thinking can connect some exciting digital dots.
Events that gather creative thought leaders, influencers and the geeks into one time bubble are to be treasured. It’s like reading a good book except…. the good bits are amplified and explained. That was the experience at the Teradata Marketing Festival I had the pleasure to attend.
On Twitter it was known as #ONEfest
Oh…I forgot to mention.
Conferences should also be about fun. Disclaimer: Pam Moore, Kim Garst and I were involved as influencers to move the digital dial. Not for our sunglasses.
In digital the future is so bright you just have to wear shades and pout!
Insights on digital marketing
The digital discussion we have had for decades has become a raging global conversation that is touching every part of our personal lives and our business fabric. But it’s not about the technology. That is just the vehicle.
“Digital disruption is less about technology and more about transforming business models” – Ray Wang
Trends in digital cannot be ignored. If you do they will bite you. Maybe not this year or next year but they will.
Trends that are changing our marketing and business world include:
Paid digital advertising
The conference touched on the top trends in digital marketing. There were some great speakers.
In one blog post I am going to try and sum up and distill the conversations, the insights and the takeaways from some of the worlds top digital marketing experts.
Many conferences will chase that headline keynote speaker. For many it has become “that” Hollywood actor. You know the one that tries to be relevant but ends up looking like they don’t get it.
Ashton doesn’t fit into that embarrassing role.
His resume in tech is like a star role in Silicon Valley. He has invested in successful start-ups. These include Skype, Foursquare, AirBNB and Path. His own venture A Plus which has pivoted to become a social media content platform focused on publishing upbeat stories (positive journalism). This platform is ranked in the top 50 websites in the USA with 27.5 million unique views.
Oh yes…he has 16.9 million followers on Twitter. He is also very real, transparent and passionate.
Here are his insights as captured on Twitter under the hashtag #ONEfest and shared by the audience.
The approach to the digital world. You can’t outperform or predict better than the data.
Being real and transparent
You have to go get dirty. You have to get down into the trenches. Passion for your work is the KEY!
It’s not about what you own, it’s about what you share! @aplusk
Take everything you know about marketing and assume it’s wrong!
Whenever you do a thing, act as if all the world were watching.
We’re tumbling toward mass transparency.
True innovation is scary as hell.
If it feels dangerous, that’s interesting. Scary is disruptive
“As a marketer you have to be the inspiration from inside the company”
Transparency and vulnerability allow a collaborative achievement to success
“Get busy being the best you”
We’re living in an experiential world. It doesn’t matter what you have, it matters what you can share
Build a culture that stands up and shouts “I WORK HERE!
In marketing you have to be willing to fail, admit it and pivot quickly
“Be ruthless with your curiosity & your willingness to learn every step of the way”
Your social media is an extension of you. Inspire, connect, entertain or educate.
Steve Vice President of Global Partnerships for Facebook had some insights on “Personalized Marketing at Scale” and other takeaways that were worth noting.
Here are some snippets from his presentation.
When marketing via mobile, you are competing with family and friends. So be smart and targeted.
Facebook is getting 4 BILLION video views per day!
The average person checks Facebook on their phone 14 times a day.
On Facebook you are competing with everything… babies, cats so targeting is key!
1.44B people have been on @facebook in the past 30 days.
Smartphones have more computing power than the computer that sent a man to the moon
Smartphones aren’t merely phones – where we previously needed 15 devices, now we need only one
Mobile is the driver of digital today
It was great to catch up again with Jay who is a good friend of mine. He is known for those great suits (which apparently are especially custom made for him by his tailor), but even greater marketing insights.
Love this tweet which emerged during his keynote “I think he buys golf clubs”. Jay knows how to stand out in the online clutter.
Wear loud suits offline!
One tweet also mentioned “Fashion courage”, which just highlighted his capability to stand out from the rest of the presentations.
He also knows how to create memorable” tweetable” quotes and here are some of his best.
Be the best solution not just a solution
Relationships are created with information first, people second.
You sell more by selling less
Youtility is the fire. Social media is the gasoline
Ask yourself this ONE question every morning… “How can I help?
All marketers tell themselves the same lie….our customers are too busy. If they say that, you’re not being relevant enough
Don’t change the message. Change the messenger
The difference between HELP and HYPE is just one letter. Stop being amazing, start being useful
The second screen is now our first screen
Brian has been in the digital game for a while and it was great to hear his keynote
Here is the stream of consciousness that is Brian’s brain on Twitter during the presentation.
What if you could act like a start-up? Starting from scratch gives you the ability to see new possibilities
The true source of innovation is passion
67% of customer journey is now digital
Surprise and delight is the new wave of innovation. How can you cater to the digital and physical customer today?
@Starbucks has merged marketing and IT to connect with the digital customer
What the spirit of failure means is that you’re trying something new”
The biggest mistake business is making today is thinking we’re profitable and doing great
Today’s businesses must compete for the customer of the future but they move too slow”
Digital Darwinism isn’t a myth; it’s result of missed opportunity
Digital transformation and the change it requires of organizations turns analysts into therapists.
The Braun brothers Scooter and Adam were interviewed together during the conference.
Scott Samuel “Scooter” Braun is an American talent manager and businessman. He owns two record labels: School Boy Records and Raymond-Braun Media Group.
His big claim to fame is identifying Justin Biebers talent and the rest is history.
Adam Braun is an American businessman, author, and philanthropist. He is the Founder & CEO of Pencils of Promise, a non-profit organization that builds schools and increases access to education for children in the developing world.
Impressing your business visitors often starts with that “wow” reception area.
You know…the ones that the lawyers and bankers have….
Glass, views of the harbour and those $50,000 pieces of art….
Marble floors, big leather sofas and grand spaces….. It’s meant to impress.
At the big end of town the investment in creating that right first impression can run into the high six figures….and more.
It’s the start of the seduction.
But the portal to your business is no longer just the front door to your office or shop. It’s your website, blog or even your profile on LinkedIn. The digital door is now where most customers visit you first.
The one page
Many website has have hundreds or even thousands of pages.
One of the most visited is the “about” page….visitors want to know what you do and whether they have come to the right place to help them solve “that” problem.
The contact page is also vital.
ut at the end of the day you need to “convert” that traffic….and online attention into leads and sales. That one page that you need to “nail”… is your “landing page(s)”…. that captures that important email and allows you to communicate, convert and sell.
The conversion metrics
Traffic is one thing but conversion is where the action is doe that all important landing page. You need to measure its performance and then keep optimizing it.
Here are some vital conversion metrics to consider for your website and landing page.
Here are some of the landing pages that are vital for digital marketers to master if they want to keep building their “list” and sell products.
Don’t ignore this digital marketing tip…
The examples below are some of the top performing and best converting pages from Leadpages.net according to their data from millions of data points. What’s great about their service is that you don’t have to get a designer to design and build but just login and easily build your own. Almost everything is editable in a matter of seconds. Title, colors, buttons, images, backgrounds, fonts, font sizes and much more…
How do you use them?
I use them for pop-ups for content upgrades, webinar landing pages and sales and much more. They also integrate into a wide range of marketing automation platforms (Eg Infusionsoft… which I use) and also email marketing software like MailChimp.
Leadpages also provides analytics and A/B split testing to keep optimizing the performance of your landing pages.
1. Basic landing page
Giving away something for free is always a good “lead magnet” and a free book, or PDF is a simple and effective tactic. Below is a simple and high converting landing page that squeezes that lead out of that website visitor.
2. Video landing page
Videos are well know for converting well.
Here is a simple example of a video page that offers a free video as well in return for that important email address. Notice the social proof at the bottom of the page that adds credibility to the brand.
3. Webinar landing page
Webinars are one of the best ways to capture emails fast.
Free learning combined with a deadline creates scarcity that drives lead acquisition fast and at scale. In just 3-4 days of promotion you can capture 100′s or even thousands of emails if you partner with a high traffic site.
Notice the counter showing the days and hours to when the the webinar starts.
4. Sales landing page
Leads are great but we all want sales at the end of the day..
It might be a book, a training course or maybe a subscription site. Here is a simple example of a high converting book sale landing page. Just go in add your own book image. Outline of the chapters, testimonials and your brand colours.
How are your landing pages?
So do you have a traffic problem or a conversion problem?
Are you focusing on getting that traffic to covert to leads and sales? Look forward to your insights and stories in the comments below.
Trying to find a way to shorten a link for Twitter to get the tweet under 140 characters was a challenge. You needed a tool to do that simple task.
Then I stumbled upon “that” tool.
Twitter then used it as the default URL shortening service in May, 2009 until it created its own.
Social media and digital marketing was simple back then. Twitter and Facebook were it and digital marketing revolved around Banner ads, Google AdWords and email marketing.
But it quickly became complex with many moving parts.
Just the Twitter torrent of tweets with @mentions, retweets and #hashtags needed social media management tools. Distilling the noise and managing the engagement required more than just watching the native Twitter feed.
Raw social media automation software that allowed you to grow your followers, tweet content and other mundane tasks started to emerge. They weren’t pretty but most of the time they worked.
But back then even simple social media automation was frowned upon because it wasn’t really social.
The first wave of digital marketing automation
On the social web tools like TweetDeck and Hootsuite were launched by enterprising entrepreneurs to help handle the complexity and noise.
They provided the dashboards for managing Twitter and Facebook.
That was one thing but other networks were launched. It was getting complicated….Pinterest, Instagram and Google+ were the next wave. These were also followed by Vine and others and now we have Meerkat and Periscope. And we are just talking english speaking social networks.
During this first wave the web connected mobile phone started to make its presence felt. Today there are 2.7 billion of these now on the web and growing at 39% per annum. But the full impact of this is wasn’t felt till the second wave.
Every switched on marketer was excited by the launch and possibility of every new platform.
As marketers discovered the power of social media to reach the world in real time the need for more sophisticated tools became apparent.
The second wave
As social media became seen as the next start up gold rush, the older generation of software providers in email marketing and lead generation rushed to join the party. This saw the rapid evolution of platforms like Marketo, Eloqua and Pardot amongst many.
Here is a timeline from Marketing Automation Insider that suggests the journey started in 1992 with Unica. According to them the industry is now $1.65 billion industry and has seen $5.5 billion in acquisitions by Salesforce, IBM, Adobe and Microsoft and others.
The smart phone and mobile market reached critical mass and is accelerating digital noise and adoption.
Established Enterprise software providers at the big end of town including IBM, Oracle, Salesforce, Adobe and Teradata started building their own platforms. But to accelerate their evolution they started acquiring technology start-ups that added features and market share. Salesforce bought Exact Target, IBM purchased SilverPop and Oracle bought Eloqua.
Today digital marketing automation has become big business. It is about marketing at scale with multiple partners, many social networks and managing content and permissions.
Marketing is now not just an art but becoming a science. To do it well you will need the tools to manage, measure and optimize your efforts.
What is digital marketing automation?
Digital marketing automation has its roots in email marketing.
So how do we define it?
It is software that allows you to automate repetitive tasks, reduce human error, manage complexity and measure and optimize your efforts.
We can also add SEO and digital advertising to the above mix.
Each of those disciplines from analytics to social media is complex in its own right. One of the biggies that will become more important is “analytics”. The ability to sift through the big data and make insightful decisions to optimize your marketing efforts.
The skill gap shows that “analytics” is the biggest talent gap.
There isn’t an easy answer. It will depend on whether you are a small, medium or large brand.
Some platforms are better at email, others social media and then analytics. Then there is the user interface and ease of use. This is important when using complex software.
One review site that provides valuable insights is G2 Crowd. They score products and vendors based on ratings and reviews gathered from the user community, as well as data aggregated from online sources and social networks. They apply a unique, patent-pending algorithm to this data to calculate the customer satisfaction and market presence scores in real time.
The rating variables
The satisfaction rating is affected by the following:
Customers’ likelihood of recommending the product to others (this is the question we use to calculate the star rating)
Satisfaction ratings gathered from questions in the review
User ratings of features specific to a particular category of software
The number of reviews received on G2 Crowd; buyers trust a product with more reviews, and more reviews means a more representative and accurate reflection of the customer experience.
How recently the review was submitted; reviews that have been written or updated more recently receive a higher weight to help more accurately capture the rapidly evolving nature of software.
Below is the G2 Crowd Grid Showing where the different platforms sit according to their ratings.
Here are the top 10 digital marketing automation tools based on their algorithm. Listing them here doesn’t mean I recommend them.
HubSpot is an inbound marketing software company that helps businesses transform their marketing from outbound (cold calls, email spam, trade shows, TV ads, etc) lead generation to inbound lead generation enabling them to “get found” by more potential customers in the natural course of the way they shop and learn.
I discovered Hubspot 7 years ago in 2008 (it was big part of the inspiration of me starting this blog in 2009) and they were one of the pioneers in automated digital marketing. It was founded in 2006 by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and launched in December 2007.
They “get” content marketing.
Pardot, a salesforce.com Company, is an easy-to-use B2B Marketing Automation suite that helps sales and marketing teams maximize efficiency and increase revenue.
Pardot’s lead management software features CRM integration, email marketing, lead nurturing, lead scoring, and ROI reporting to help marketing and sales teams work together to generate and qualify sales leads, shorten sales cycles, and demonstrate marketing accountability.
It was founded by David Cummings and Adam Blitzer in 2007. It was acquired by Exact Target in 2012 for a reported $95 million and then Exact Target was bought by Salesforce in 2013.
Powerful and easy marketing software that helps marketing and sales professionals drive revenue and improve marketing accountability. Marketo provides the leading cloud-based marketing software platform for companies of all sizes to build and sustain engaging customer relationships. They offer a free trial and no set-up fees!
Founded in 2006 and launched its first product “Lead Management”. It acquired “Crowd Factory” in 2012 which added social media marketing capabilities and went public in 2013. Just after launch it was valued at $724 million.
4. Oracle Eloqua
Oracle’s B2B Cross-Channel Marketing solution, Oracle Eloqua, enables marketers to plan and execute automated marketing campaigns while delivering a personalized customer experience for their prospects.
They started in 1999 and its mission then was to improve lead generation. It was acquired by Oracle in 2012 for $871 million.
Act-On’s cloud-based integrated marketing automation platform allows marketers to tie inbound, outbound, and lead nurturing programs together to maximize their return on marketing investments.
The company was founded in 2008 and initially sold its software exclusively through Cisco, which provided $2 million in funding. It has raised an additional $74 million and its platform according to reviews is best suited to small and medium business.
LeadSquared is a Marketing Software company helping small and medium businesses drive revenue by aligning their marketing and sales activities. Provides the capture of leads from all your sources – inbound email, online campaigns, phone calls, website, chat, lead generation websites and more.
It was founded in 2012.
Infusionsoft is a leading sales and marketing software for small business owners that helps them get organized, grow sales and save time. It is also used by many bloggers for creating marketing campaigns and funnels and email marketing.
Infusionsoft makes it easy to create and execute a sales and marketing strategy; centralize customer interactions; capture new leads; close sales faster; and automate repetitive tasks like follow-up, contact management, billing and payment—all from one place.
Infusionsoft was founded in 2001 by brothers Scott and Eric Martineau and Clate Mask in Mesa, Arizona. It has 25,000 customers and has raised $125 million in funding.
8. Sales Fusion
Salesfusion is a leading provider of marketing automation software that is designed for B2B companies who are committed to driving more revenue by aligning marketing and sales.
According to SiriusDecisions, a leading sales and marketing analyst firm, as much of 70% of the buying cycle may be self-directed and completed prior to sales engagement.
Salesfusion is dedicated to helping companies build a large revenue funnel for marketing and sales by creating customized digital conversations that are seamlessly transitioned between departments. Marketing and sales teams participate in and measure these digital conversations to deliver more lead-to-revenue results by communicating with the right leads at the right time with the right message.
OutMarket provides marketing automation software and services for marketing teams to drive quantifiable results.
The OutMarket platform integrates email marketing, landing pages, social media management, press outreach, and robust analytics in a simple but comprehensive cloud-based solution that helps customers outmarket the competition and grow their business.
Net-Results aims to make it easy for you to automate all kinds of marketing tasks.
You end up getting more done in less time while doing a much better job nurturing your prospects, uncovering qualified leads and driving revenue growth.
So what are you using?
Are you already on the journey of marketing automation? Not started yet?
Look forward to hearing your story in the comments below.
1. Has a Twitter following bigger than the population of most countries
Not only is LeBron the most followed player in the NBA, the kid from Akron has the 33rd most Twitter followers in the world at 21.5 million.
Katy Perry has the most followers on the planet, with 70.5 million and the second most followed NBA player on Twitter is Kevin Durant with 10.3 million followers.
2. Has more than 10 million Instagram followers
If you have watched LeBron James during the playoffs, it is evident that his game is multidimensional. He can drive to the hoop like a freight train, but he also has amazing passing abilities. Getting him regularly compared to Magic Johnson.
His social media game is multidimensional as well. King James has 10.4 million Instagram followers.
The official Instagram account has 73 million followers, which seems a little biased!
Beyonce and Kim Kardashian each have 34 million followers.
Even LeBron is frightened by the Dentist! Image courtesy of @KingJames Instagram account
3. Rakes in $126,500 per Tweet
Not long ago, Darren Rovell tweeted that the market value for a LeBron James Tweet was $126,500.
These numbers were reported by opendorse. It is important to note that these are not the figures that are currently paid to athletes and celebrities; these are simply market value amounts based on exposure.
In essence, LeBron James’ Twitter account is an online billboard.
Good choice by Trainwreck to feature LeBron in their movie! They knew the value of his Tweets!
4. Goes offline during the playoffs
Did you know that during the playoffs, LeBron James goes off the grid in regards to his social media activity?
That’s right, Mr. James wants no distractions, so he doesn’t tweet or post photos until the postseason is completed.
According to Yahoo!, LeBron James ditched his phone during the 2012 playoffs, when LeBron led the Miami Heat to win an NBA Championship.
After losing to the Mavericks in the 2011 NBA Finals, LeBron James sat in his house for two weeks. No contact with anyone, no social media, no phone, no nonsense.
He sat with just his thoughts for two weeks.
Fast-forward to the 2012 NBA Playoffs, where LeBron initiated his first-ever ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ mode, where he avoids his phone, Twitter, Instagram, and all other potential distractions.
Two months later, James was an NBA Champion after defeating the Thunder in five games.
James did the same against the Spurs in 2013 and came out an NBA Champion again.
Now in Cleveland, James has activated his lock-in mode where he avoids social media and the rest of the outside noise, saying:
The message LeBron posted prior to his social hiatus in the 2015 NBA Playoffs
5. Almost broke Twitter one time
When LeBron James announced he would be returning to Cleveland for a second stint with the Cavaliers, he made the decision in a Sports Illustrated article title, “I’m Coming Home.”
According to CNBC, LeBron James nearly broke Twitter.
James broke the news in Sports Illustrated, in an article titled “I’m Coming Home.” As of 3PM ET, there have been over 2.5 million Tweets mentioning King James since the news was released, according to Twitter.
He coordinated his social accounts to release simultaneous messages as the article was released.
His Instagram photo was his most popular of all time, receiving 928K “Likes.”
LeBron’s Instagram post after announcing his return to Cleveland
6. Is rocking Facebook with over 20 million followers
Similar to how he dominates on Twitter and Instagram, LeBron takes the throne compared to his NBA peers on Facebook.
When LeBron James was a member of the Miami Heat, a fan threw a one-handed hook shot from half court and made it for $75,000, much to the delight of all the fans and players in the arena – especially LeBron, who stormed the court and tackled him!
The video was posted to YouTube, and if you search “LeBron James”, it is the most popular video in the search results.
This memorable moment has been seen by nearly 33 million people!
LeBron is clearly the King on and off the basketball court.
As he continues to dominate on the basketball court, there is a direct correlation between his on-court performance and the success of his social media activities; including social accounts with a combined 50-million plus followers.
The real question is whether the King can eventually pass the Queen on Twitter (Katy Perry), who has more than double his amount of followers.