Tuesday, February 28, 2012

[Free Report] Smartphone Usage and Understanding Mobile Consumer Behavior

I am a firm believer that the question isn’t if your business should be in mobile but in what way.

As mobile technology continues to evolve, people around the world are growingly having their mobile device become an extension of them. Now is the time to start thinking about how to get started with mobile marketing for your business.

Yesterday, Jason Spero, Head of Global Mobile for Google, released a list of interesting predictions for mobile in 2012.

1. More than 1 billion people will use mobile devices as their primary internet access point
2. There will be 10 days where >50% of trending search terms will be on mobile
3. Mobile’s role in driving people into stores will be proven and it will blow us away
4. “Mobile driven spend” will emerge as a big category
5. Smartphones will prove exceptional at driving a new consumer behavior
6. Tablets will take their place as the 4th screen
7. New industry standards will make mobile display easy to run
8. 5 new, mobile first companies will reach the Angry Birds level of success
9. The ROI on mobile and tablet advertising will increase as a result of the unmatched relevance of proximity
10. The intersection of mobile and social will spark a dramatic new form of engaging consumers
11. 80% of the largest 2,000 websites globally will have an HTML5 site
12. One million small businesses globally will build a mobile website

One of his predictions that I would like to highlight is #12. A recommended first step in delving into the world of mobile is to build a mobile version of your website.

For more information about mobile usage and its related consumer behavior in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Spain and Japan, download Google’s latest report “Our Mobile Planet: Global Smartphone Users”.

Image Credit: jetalone

Sunday, February 26, 2012

InternetMarketingClub.org Presents: Social Media for Social Business

We're pleased to feature Eric Schwartzman, author of "Social Marketing to the Business Customer," for our last Wednesday Webinar for the month of February. By now, most companies that sell to consumers have bought into the value of social media for marketing, promotions and public relations. Some are even using these new channels for customer service. But what about companies that sell specialized products and services to select business buyers? It makes perfect sense to be on social media if you're a consumer brand, but what if you're a niche B2B? There are still unique and beneficial ways for you to use your time with the major social networking platforms.

Click here to register (2-29-2012 at 12:30pm EST):

About Eric Schwartzman:
Eric Schwartzman (@ericschwartzman), author of "Social Marketing to the Business Customer," the first book devoted exclusively to the use of social media for business-to-business purposes will discuss how niche companies you've probably never heard of are increasing their productivity and growing their market share by social marketing to business customers.

Schwartzman, who's clients include the U.S. Dept. of State, the United States Marine Corps, the Government of Singapore, Boeing, Johnson & Johnson, Southern California Edison and the Environmental Defense Fund, is an entrepreneur and online marketing consultant. He has been conducting social media training sessions and producing the On the Record...Online podcast since 2005.

This free webinar will take place this Wednesday, February 29th at 12:30 pm. The presentation will last an hour, concluding with a Q&A section with Eric. For more information and to register, visit the Social Marketing for Social Business page.  

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

InternetMarketingClub.org Presents: Advanced Landing Page Tips & Tools

We're excited for this week's Wednesday Webinar with Joanna Lord of SEOmoz, featuring Advanced Landing Page Tips & Tools for your business website. Joanna explains the many different changes that landing pages can take advantage of, including some tools to test out. In this lesson, you'll learn that there is more to landing page optimization than simply adding new buttons and gadgets to your website's back end. That's what Joanna is here for!

Joanna Lord is the Director of Customer Acquisition and Retention at SEOmoz.org, a leading SEO software company out of Seattle, WA. While she currently heads up SEOmoz’s lifecycle marketing efforts for Moz's 15,000 member customer base, she is also a well-known social media enthusiast and frequent conference speaker. Her diverse experience in data analysis, performance marketing, inbound marketing and retention programs enables her to provide tactical strategies that work.

This free webinar will take place this Wednesday, February 22nd at 12:30 pm. The presentation will last an hour, concluding with a Q&A section with Joanna. For more information and to register, visit the Advanced Landing Page Tips & Tools page. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Facebook: Largest Internet IPO in History or Fad?

This month, Facebook filed for an IPO and is expected to start trading in May. The company is valued at somewhere between $75 billion and $100 billion, making it the largest Internet IPO ever, much more than Google's $23 billion initial market capitalization.

Is this a smart move for investors or does Facebook live in its own bubble, just waiting for it to burst? The innovative company and its fearless leader, Mark Zuckerberg, will undoubtedly have to continue its track record of dominating the Internet space for a long time to come. With today's fickle Internet users and a new generation of "digital natives" being brought up, this will not be an easy feat.

There are many ways that Facebook can grow and various markets it can enter, but it only takes one new startup to knock you off the throne... just ask MySpace.

Do you think Facebook has what it takes to stay on top? Would you invest in the IPO?  

Twitter Advertising for Businesses of All Sizes

Are you looking for a new advertising tactic to test for your business? Twitter might just be the answer…

Beginning in late March, Twitter will roll out new self-serve advertising products, available to businesses of all sizes, called Promoted Tweets and Promoted Accounts. This is all in an effort to continue building out some form of a revenue model for the business, which they have appeared to struggle with. According to a report by eMarketer Digital Intelligence, Twitter’s ad revenue growth will fall from the triple digits last year to “mere” 83% growth in 2012, reaching nearly $260 million worldwide by the end of this year. I still think Twitter is a viable platform for some businesses, and depending on the cost of this advertising, it may very well be worth the test.

Twitter has partnered with American Express as described below (extracted from Twitter’s blog post):

We’ve partnered with American Express to make it easy for small business owners to advertise on Twitter. American Express Cardmembers and merchants based in the U.S. will be invited to try this new advertising solution before anyone else, and American Express will give $100 in free advertising to the first 10,000 eligible businesses to sign up.

Starting today [February 17th], American Express Cardmembers and merchants can register to participate in the initial introduction of this new offering via ads.twitter.com/amex.

We will launch this new offering more widely later this year.

Does this form of advertising make sense for your business? Please describe your Twitter business success stories below in the comments.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

MySpace Reunion

Apparently MySpace is back and - much like Montezuma's Revenge - it's back with a vengeance. I read an articletoday that MySpace has gained a million users since December thanks to a new music player. Really?? Who are these "million users" and what's so special about this music player that it would stand a chance against Pandora or favored U.S. newcomer Spotify?

I decided to head on over to MySpace.com to check it out. I reached into the depths of my brain to remember my login information. I waited, holding my breath as the circle spun, and... nothing had changed. My last status update from 2009 was still there along with the same frenetic layout. There are links to Music, Video and Games sections on the top right navigation and the home page definitely sells the music aspect. Of course, it looks like it's selling mostly to teens who crave pop music with front page features on the likes of Taylor Swift, Breaking Dawn Part 2 (hey, isn't that a movie?) and Boy Bands (who are apparently also making a comeback.)

The only redeeming quality of this "new & improved" MySpace is that music videos, which have been unceremoniously shoved out of the limelight thanks to MTV's programming geniuses, might get a comeback of their own. Other selling points are the integration with Facebook (the MySpace app works within Facebook and users can log in with their Facebook credentials) and the fact that the new music player offers free access to 42 million songs vs. Spotify's measly 15 million songs. The question is, with the ability to upload your original music, how many of those 42 million songs are quality recordings and how many were made in your brother's basement?

Will you be checking out the new MySpace for its musical enhancements? Head on over to www.MySpace.comand tell us what you think! (Just don't hurt yourself trying to remember your old password.)

 The new MySpace home page focuses on music, videos and pop news, seemingly for the teen in all of us

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

[Deadline Approaching] Have You Set Up Your YouTube Channel Yet?

YouTube has announced that as of March 7th, all Channels will be automatically converted to the new YouTube Channel design. With this couple of months lead time, it’s a good idea to start upgrading your Channel now while you still have time. This new change allows you to select one of four templates as well as customizations to further engage your viewers.

YouTube’s blog post advises, “…you can opt in by clicking the blue “Try the new design” button on the top of your Channel page. You may also switch back to the old Channels design repeatedly before March 7 by clicking the “Switch Back” button in the appearance tab of the Edit Channel menu on your new Channel.”

I’m still not fully convinced on the new layout as it feels so “busy”. Although, I do find that YouTube has woven in the social integration nicely.

Additional YouTube resources can be found in the Help Center.

What are your thoughts on the new YouTube Channel design?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

InternetMarketingClub.org Presents: Branding - A Definition, Key Elements and the Importance of Design

This week we have another exciting Wednesday Webinar lined up for your marketing interests. Dave Kustin, principal of boutique agency Element-M, joins as our guest presenter and gives us helpful insight into building the right brand for your business. With his knowledge and experience, Dave teaches the importance of brand design, packaging and launching to really kick-start the face of marketing. If you're still confused about how to really target your audience and create a familiar image, this branding webinar is perfect for you.

Dave Kustin brings his 15 years of experience in professional marketing with him to Wednesday's Webinar. During his extensive career, he's worked with branding behemoths MGM, Sony and Comcast, among many more. Dave holds a bachelors degree in Communications from Florida International University and an MBA in Entrepreneurship from the H. Wayne Huizenga School of Business at Nova Southeastern University.

This free webinar will take place this Wednesday, February 15th at 12:30 pm. The presentation will last an hour, concluding with a Q&A section with Dave. For more information and to register, visit the Branding - A Definition, Key Elements and the Importance of Design page.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Welcome to Pinterest ~ The Social Catalog

The visual social network, Pinterest, has recently been gaining traction. Personally, I keep hearing about it more and more.

Pinterest describes itself as a website that, “…lets you organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web. People use pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and organize their favorite recipes.

Best of all, you can browse pinboards created by other people. Browsing pinboards is a fun way to discover new things and get inspiration from people who share your interests.

The website recently reported impressive statistics including (CNN):

• Unique visitors to Pinterest grew 400% from September to December 2011
• Pinterest drives more visitors to third-party websites than Google+, YouTube and LinkedIn combined

The website is currently by invite only. I’ve recently received my invitation and my curiosity has me eager to check it out. I’m also noticing the adoption of Pinterest with non-industry folks much more than I have yet to find with Google+.

Do you see an opportunity to use Pinterest for your business?

Monday, February 6, 2012

InternetMarketingClub.org Presents: Content is Currency

Join Jon Wuebben, CEO of ContentLaunch, as he shows us how to create powerful content for marketing purposes. What types of content? Blog posts, videos, articles, web pages, webinars, white papers, social content and more. Quality content that is focused on user needs and connects with its intended audience is something many companies aspire to, but few practice well. For most companies, it requires a change in business/marketing philosophy and a fervent devotion to consistent content production.

The reality is that most web content could be crafted better and focused more on your customers needs. In fact, most companies spend all their energy and money thinking about the appearance and the architecture of their sites and spend very little time thinking about the actual content itself. Failing to look at content from a strategic point of view, they see their web pages as something they need to fill quickly. Instead of providing customers and prospects with free tips, advice, how to and other compelling content to start building a relationship, most companies try and sell immediately… and almost always fail.

Click here to register (2-8-2012 at 12:30pm EST):

About Jon Wuebben:
Jon Wuebben is the CEO of Content Launch, a web content development, content strategy and marketing firm that provides content for hundreds of companies, digital agencies and web designers around the world. His new book, “Content is Currency: Developing Powerful Content for Web & Mobile”, helps businesses everywhere learn how to plan, create, distribute and manage content. Jon has spoken at the Online Marketing Summit, New Media Expo, Shop.org Annual Conference, Media Relations Summit and for many organizations and industry groups. Speaking topics include content marketing, social media strategy, mobile marketing, SEO copywriting and entrepreneurship. Jon has an MBA in International Marketing from Thunderbird, The American Graduate School of International Management. He is also the author of "Content Rich: Writing Your Way to Wealth on the Web".

This free webinar will take place Wednesday, February 8th, 2012 from 12:30pm EST – 1:30pm EST. To register and for more information please visit: Content Is Currency.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Does Foursquare Make Sense For Your Business?

As of January 2012, the Foursquare community consists of around 15 million people worldwide. Did you know Foursquare has over 1.5 billion check-ins, with millions more every day? There are over 600,000 businesses using the Foursquare Merchant Platform.

So, with these numbers, it is worth asking yourself the question - does Foursquare make sense for my business?

Watch this video to put Foursquare into context:

Foursquare can be used to obtain new customers and keep loyal customers coming back. As a business, you can get really creative with specials, loyalty programs, and discounts. And remember, if you are establishing your business on Foursquare, create a presence that is exciting to engage with. Make a customer’s encounter with you not just simply an interaction but make it an experience.