Mobile, mobile, mobile! This has been the buzz word recently and is something I personally am going to see that many of you are able to start generating and monetizing traffic with it. Given my decade plus experience making money online I've seen a lot of trends come and go along with lot of websites, business, and partnerships. Here recently in the CPA space we've seen big names we never thought would go out, go out. We've seen other affiliate networks face legal/payment/other issues. While one may consider the apocalypse is near, we're actually far from it. The game is changing and those that adapt, develop, and progress with it will be rewarded handsomely. Those that refuse to give up their "old ways" or adapt with the change will find themselves in a world of trouble (as some are).
When we launched IMGrind in 2011, we introduced the concept of lead generation arbitrage. The entire process it relatively simple as you don't have to sell or own your own product, rather you are paid commissions from leads that you're able to retain and further monetize. Many found new success with this model and ported it over to multiple paid and organic traffic sources. Several of you also integrated with Facebook's powerful Open Graph allowing for maximum social exposure. The next step now, is mobile.
Tablet and smart phone devices are becoming more-and-more common. Just the other day I was sitting down for dinner with my parents at a restaurant. Unconsciously, we look-up as the waiter has a blank stare waiting on our drink order, and we were all three too "zoned out" from our iPhones. Do you know when the last time they turned their computers on? Sure my dad uses his for his business, but most-of-the-time they both can be found at all hours of the night pecking way on their iPads. I haven't just noticed this trend with them though. My friends here in Kansas City are the same way. I bought my girlfriend an iPad and that was it for her desktop too. Here comes bill paying, Facebook, and Pinterest comfortably sitting on her couch. From Cancun Mexico to New York City, everywhere I go people are consuming more mass media than ever. As Internet Marketers this lies an advantage that can only be compared to things such as the Industrial Revolution (yea I said it).
In 2008, Steve Jobs took the stage at the Macworld Expo and shared what seemed like a startling statistic: "Forty percent of the people in the U.S. read one book or less last year...People don't read anymore." Many are saying this statement could be seen as a foreshadowing of the explosive growth in visual content. But that wouldn't really be accurate. Direct marketers have long known this; creating compelling visual content has been at the center of their world for years.
People are compelled by strong visuals -- it's why we watch the movie without reading the book, why (prior to digital channels) we scrapbooked ideas for decorating our houses, and why "before and afters" make us buy stuff. Visuals matter. It's also why, nearly a decade ago, platforms like Smugmug, Flickr, and Photobucket were created -- to let people take their photo sharing online.
The biggest difference today is that the new players in the visual platform space -- Facebook, Pinterest, Instragram, and more -- have made it easy; it's easy to collect, easy to share, and, most importantly, easy for brands to get involved.
Yet with that ease of sharing comes important brand considerations. These new platforms are social at their core. So it's instantly about more than putting a few images on a page; it's opening a window into your brand. What companies share must strike a balance between bringing to life a genuine brand story and providing content that inspires and compels action. Furthermore, marketing strategies for how brands engage with consumers should reflect how and why consumers are using those channels.
Ring, ring, ring... your small business phone probably rings off the hook. But between important customer service calls you are also likely bombarded with cheesy sales scripts – where in a dingy room scattered with pizza boxes someone breathing heavily into the phone asks to speak with the boss.
He says they have a revolutionary way for your company to grow leaps and bounds – they have search engine optimization (SEO).
The man claims he only wants ten minutes of your time, time in the middle of a busy workday.
You have a million things on your mind. You are on the verge of losing your largest client, your kid is sick at home, and... oh... you forgot about the presentation you are supposed to give to your investors in an hour. Crap. You blew the last meeting... you really need to prep.
Sensing you will hang up, he interrupts your train of thought and says, "you will regret not talking to me – I will call your competitor next."
Scenarios like the one above occur all too frequently. Between relentless phone calls and contact form spam, search engine optimizers have made a bad name for themselves - a name that has cast a dark shadow over an already murky industry.
So is search engine optimization a real marketing tactic? And how can you make sure you are hiring a legitimate company?
1. SEO can generate leads and revenue
Social media can deliver the kind of return few other marketing tactics can, if you use it wisely.
As a marketing tool, social media seemingly knows no bounds. Businesses large and small, B2B and B2C, and all manner of brands are flocking to it like monster truck fans to free beer hour. Any time something experiences such rapid growth, be it a technology or a marketing tactic, there are bound to be growing pains, and social media use among marketers is no different.
As we ease our way into 2013, here is a look at some of the top social media marketing mistakes marketers are making now. Recognition is the key to avoidance for your organization this year. Take a look at this social media mistake 6-pack, and plot a course around them to social media marketing success in 2013.
Not Enough Segments.... or Worse, None at All
Failure to segment is a massive fail indeed, yet it one of the most common social media marketing mistakes organizations make. They embrace social media, but their hug grabs everything at once. Better to take a step back and address each market segment individually.
Who Are They?
As an on line marketing consultant, I have to constantly search out inventive ways to generate traffic to my clients' offers. It is not always easy, because every business is different. The approach I take will vary according to what industry and marketplace I am targeting.
But, having said that, I find that there is a basic set of rules you can follow to make sure you reach your target audience and convert at a higher rate. In my opinion there are 5 important parts to making sure your marketing via social media is effective.
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