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How To Optimize LinkedIn's New Company Pages

112987077Despite its no-nonsense, all-business remit, LinkedIn isn't afraid of cutting a dash in the office and has updated its image in a number of ways recently.

Unlike the changes we're seeing on some other social networks, LinkedIn's have all been genuine improvements which put functionality and community first.

This week saw major changes to a feature that's previously been rather frustrating for managers: Company pages.

LinkedIn has always concentrated on putting the individual first, so building a unified company presence on the site has had unique challenges in the past. Hopefully this makeover will give companies a chance to give their branding a more dynamic presence.

Having just updated Econsultancy's LinkedIn page, I thought it would be good to run through the major changes and look at ways to optimise your business page on LinkedIn...

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Why E-Mail Marketing Is Like Selling Bibles

112987077Email marketing is a lot like selling Bibles.

I already know what you are thinking: "How is he going to possibly connect those two things?!" Well, first you need a little back story.

I was having drinks recently with my old boss Tim Suther, CMO of Acxiom. (Faithful readers of this column will recognize that name, as I have mentioned and quoted from in the past.) I was making the point that marketers in general pay way too little attention to attribution despite the variety of tools available today to better track a consumer's conversion path. Tim responded that it is "easier to sell Bibles than it is religion." In a minute, I'll get to what he meant by that regarding attribution. In a broader sense, the point he was making is something that every single marketer needs to understand and take to heart, whether they are a simple email marketer or a CMO.

The point Tim was making is that it is easier to convince a religious person to purchase a Bible than it is to convert someone to a particular religion. A religious person will understand that a Bible is a good thing to possess, so your job is simply to convince him or her that your Bible is the right one. On the other hand, selling a non-religious person on religion is another whole level of effort, with a much lower chance of success than selling that Bible to the already converted. (It's interesting to note here that marketers also use the word "conversion" when acquiring a new customer).

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What Happened to Facebook Pages' Reach?

112987077Several Facebook page managers are crying foul at decreased fan counts and lowered levels of engagement. But what's to blame? PostRocket, which helps brands manage their Facebook campaigns, addressed several rumors with its take on what's going on with EdgeRank, the Facebook algorithm that determines what is seen and by whom.

Mike Maghsoudi, PostRocket's co-founder, wrote about a few of the rumors swirling around,with regard to decreased page numbers. Maghsoudi addressed the notion that Facebook tweaked the EdgeRank algorithm to hurt fan pages, countering that this was done to make it so that users see the content they'd be most likely to interact with. He suggested that pages that are blaming EdgeRank should refocus some of that angst into creating better content.

Maghsoudi did take Facebook Insights to task, however, noting that it is a bit wonky at the moment.

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Warning: Facebook Gold, Silver, Bronze pricing status update is a Hoax

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OK, let's try this again: Facebook will never charge its users to gain access to the social network. Yet messages to that effect are finding their way onto users' walls yet again.

Sophos' Naked Security blog reported that the latest version is the following all-caps monstrosity (unedited):

FACEBOOK JUST RELEASED THEIR PRICE GRID FOR MEMBERSHIP. $9.99 PER MONTH FOR GOLD MEMBER SERVICES, $6.99 PER MONTH FOR SILVER MEMBER SERVICES, $3.99 PER MONTH FOR BRONZE MEMBER SERVICES, FREE IF YOU COPY AND PASTE THIS MESSAGE BEFORE MIDNIGHT TONIGHT. WHEN YOU SIGN ON TOMORROW MORNING YOU WILL BE PROMPTED FOR PAYMENT. IT IS OFFICIAL IT WAS EVEN ON THE NEWS. FACEBOOK WILL START CHARGING DUE TO THE NEW PROFILE CHANGES. IF YOU COPY THIS ON YOUR WALL YOUR ICON WILL TURN BLUE AND FACEBOOK WILL BE FREE FOR YOU. PLEASE PASS THIS MESSAGE ON...

According to Naked Security, this message appears to simply be a hoax, with no malware or other dangers attached to it.

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Key Metrics You Should Be Tracking

112987077The ultimate digital marketing win is to create brand loyalists who advocate for you. But what metrics can gauge your progress? Here are some to consider.

The ultimate goal for any brand is to gain the loyalty of its most valued customers. Creating a consumer base that acts as advocates for your brand is the reward of fostering a strong dedicated audience. And it's much more impactful than anything a traditional media buy can produce. So why don't we all do it? It's hard. Is it enough to simply have a brand that is recognizable? Or are there other aspects you can be measuring directly? PrecisionDemand CEO Jon Mandel speaks with iMedia's Bethany Simpson about the key metrics you should be tracking to not only better understand your audience, but to engage them into the ranks of your valued brand loyalists.

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