2011

Sazbean

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Thesis vs Genesis – Comparing Premium WordPress Themes

Sazbean

Over the Labor Day weekend, I had the pleasure of working on my first website using the Genesis Framework from StudioPress. I say pleasure because it happened to be my husband’s new photography site, and it was the first theme he’s chosen that didn’t lead me to using a string of obscenities that might actually shock people who regularly watch HBO. Thesis vs Genesis. Enjoy! 59.95.

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7 Reasons Why Business Websites Are Still Important

Sazbean

With all the hype around Facebook, blogs and Twitter, I often get asked whether a business still needs a website. seriously) Having a good website for your business is even more important now that technologies like Twitter and Facebook make it easier for more people to find you. People search through search engines like Google or Bing, not via Facebook for fan pages. What do you think?

6 Ways to Increase Word of Mouth Referrals with Social Media

Sazbean

Many small businesses rely almost entirely on word of mouth referrals for new business. People are much more likely to trust a colleague, friend or relative over what a business has to say about their products or services. Social media, when used properly and consistently, can help small businesses increase referrals. Since Here are some ways social media can help increase word of mouth referrals.

12 Tips for Creating a Social Media Content Strategy

Sazbean

Having a content strategy is vital to the success of any social media strategy. Without a content strategy, it’s difficult to plan for and create great content. It is also difficult to create the right content for your audience. Define the needs & interests of all of your audiences. Content strategy is not about what you want to provide. What content do you already have?

150 Content Marketing Tips

Drive traffic—and leads—with these tips for SEO, social media, content optimization, email marketing, and more.

State of the Social Web from Dave Linabury #smcd

Sazbean

Social Media Club Detroit had the honor of having Dave Linabury give his take on the current state of the social web and up and coming trends. Dave is Executive Vice President, Director of Social Media at Campbell-Ewald in Detroit (connect with him on Twitter ). Here are my notes from his awesome presentation last night: Biggest trend for 2011 is the blurring of offline and online. RFID wearables.

Sazcast Episode 35 – Twitter Analytics with Dave Peckens

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Twitter Analytics – Why, What & How to Measure Your Efforts on Twitter with co-host Dave Peckens. Show notes. Here are the links we discussed in the podcast: HootSuite. Bit.ly. Twitalyzer. SproutSocial. PeerIndex. CoTweet. Twitter Grader. Wildfire Analytics. Klout. 10 Twitter tools for better social networking (Webdesigner depot). Subscribe to the Sazcast podcast: Subscribe in iTunes.

5 Strategies for Managing the Twitter Firehose

Sazbean

Twitter can be very difficult to use, especially for new users. A lot of the difficulty comes in trying to manage the fire hose worth of incoming information. Just following a small number of people, even 5 or 10 can lead to a lot of tweets (depending on their frequency). Searches Twitter has a great search tool for seeing what conversations are happening. photo by Official U.S.

How Social Media Overtook Legacy Media

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How Social Media Overtook Legacy Media. On September 3rd, 1786, a man from Peter’s Creek, Pennsylvania wrote to his local newspaper, commenting that “I see by your last paper that you have not been crammed with news.&# The Pittsburgh Gazette had been printing the news since July 29th of that same year, but Gilbert Gichen was the first to have his comments on the newspaper published for other readers to see. In the New Media era (social media, blogging, online journalism), Gilbert Gichen’s contribution seems somewhat trivial. How the Switch to New Media Impacted Business.

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15 Sources of New Content for Your Social Media Strategy

Sazbean

Producing content on a consistent basis seems to be one of the biggest holdups for many businesses attempting to use social media. Coming up with new ideas for content doesn’t have to be difficult, though. Influencer Blogs – Most industries have acknowledged and respected experts. What topics are they covered and how can you add your opinion or take? Disclosure is required by the FTC ).

Sazcast Episode 34 – Mobile Websites with Dave Peckens

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Mobile websites and applications with co-host Dave Peckens. Everything you wanted to know about whether you should have a mobile website or mobile application for your business. Show notes. Here are the links we discussed in the podcast: ComScore: Mobile Social Networking App Audience Grows 126% In Past Year (ReadWriteWeb). Half of adult cell phone owners have apps on their phones (Pew Internet).

Content Marketing 2016: Staffing, Measurement, and Effectiveness

We surveyed 2016's content marketing leaders on their biggest issues, hurdles, and goals.

What Makes #ungeeked So Special

Sazbean

You could say it’s the speaker lineup and that they lead discussions instead of giving presentations. You could say it was the variety and depth of topics — or that the price for a 3 day conference  was very reasonable. You could even say it was the quality of attendees and the small room so you met them all. Friendly & Open. Helpful & Giving. Interesting & Valuable.

Social Commerce – What is it, Who’s Doing it, How can You?

Sazbean

Another one of the buzzwords that gets thrown around quite a bit is “social commerce.&# Like most of these buzzwords, the practice itself isn’t necessarily new. People have been using socializing to sell things since they first started trading. But new tools have allowed companies to extend socializing to bring much more value to their customers (and their bottom line).

19 Reasons to Use Google Analytics for Your Business

Sazbean

This is a guest post by David Murton, whose company, a small orange, provides personal and business hosting services. Let’s get down to business! 1. Easily Export to Excel Virtually any report you create in Google Analytics can be exported as a CSV file. You can open this file and manipulate it in Excel, eliminating the need for time-wasting copying and pasting. 2.

Should You Use Facebook for Your Business?

Sazbean

You might think it strange that I’m asking a question about whether your business should be on Facebook. Many businesses just assume that they should be on Facebook because everyone else is there. While that may seem like a good case for being there, it’s certainly not the only thing you should consider. As popular as it is, Facebook may not make sense for every business. Thoughts?

Study: How Much of Your Content Marketing Is Effective?

745 marketers told us how effective their content marketing is. Here's what we learned.

Conversation, The Missing Piece of Most Social Media Marketing

Sazbean

Most companies are pretty decent at self-promotion. Using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. to get their message out is a no brainer. Some companies are even good at content creation. Most are also decent at content curation. Finding “stuff&# to post that’s interesting is relatively easy. Stopping to have conversations with people seems to be super difficult. Probably not.

Sazcast Episode 33 — Google Services with Dave Peckens

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Google Services with co-host Dave Peckens. Show notes. Here are the links we discussed in the podcast: Google’s What Do You Love? Google Sketchup. Google Trends. Picassa. Flickr. Google Sites. Google Wallet. List of Google Services & Apps. Subscribe to the Sazcast podcast: Subscribe in iTunes. Subscribe to the feed. To see all the Sazcast episodes, click here. Sazcast

6 Steps for Measuring Social Media

Sazbean

Jay Baer presented this 6 Step Process for Measuring Social Media as part of the Social Media Examiner Social Media Success Summit. generally like the steps and agree with them.a I would add steps for figuring out your business goal or objectives and your strategy and tactics before you start using social. The 6 step process for measuring social media. View more presentations from Jay Baer.

An Easy Method for Content Curation

Sazbean

Curating content for your network is one great way to provide useful information. Everyone is super busy and it’s nice to have someone else read through all the news and find the really important stuff. For that very reason, content curation is pretty valuable, but can also take a bit of time to do properly. The ones that make sense for you will depend on your audience and industry. Thoughts?

Content Methodology: A Best Practices Report

If you're concerned that your organization's content marketing isn't as effective as it could be, this report is for you.

Avoiding Zero Value Efforts in Social Media

Sazbean

If efforts with social media are going to pay off for a business, they each need to contribute value to the bottom line. What value do 250,000 fans on Facebook give a business? While having that man fans may increase the business’ reach, what does that do for the company’s bottom line? How many of those fans are customers? Business Objectives. Thinking in Terms of Measurement.

Innovative Uses of iPad in Business

Sazbean

Tablet PCs have been around for quite awhile, but none have been as elegant as the iPad. The device is so easy to use, that many businesses are looking at ways they can improve their processes using the device. Here’s some of the more innovative examples: Innovative Uses of iPad In Business. View more presentations from Enterprise Social Technology (Book). News & Notes Tech

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How to Master the Art of Storytelling to Increase Social Sharing

Sazbean

Marketing is about telling good stories. Social Social media marketing is about getting your customers to tell them for you. The value and freshness of your content and how well you tap the connections that tie users and businesses together via social networks directly impacts the effectiveness of your social marketing campaigns. Connections are the key to making social business, well, social. But it’s good stories that fuel conversations, allow businesses to be a trusted source, and underpin the success of social networks like Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. News & Notes

Caution! What value message are you sending with Groupon?

Sazbean

Social discounting sites like GroupOn , Living Social , Facebook deals, etc. are all the rage. Consumers love a great deal and businesses get more traffic. Win win, right? Maybe. Have you thought about how more traffic might affect your current customers? What about the costs of the extra traffic? And what message are you sending to your customers about the value of your products? Reduced Service.

Staffing and Launching Your Content Marketing Program

Brand voice? Editorial calendar? Approval workflow? Learn how to craft the crucial parts of a content marketing program. In the third installment of our five-part playbook series, discover the necessary steps to execute a content marketing program.

7 Tips for Integrating Social Media Into Your Day

Sazbean

Finding time to spend on social media is a big problem for many businesses, especially small businesses where owners may be already wearing a lot of hats. If you’re the salesperson, the administrator and the person performing the work, where do you find time to socialize? Businesses may be starting to realize the value of social media, but actually using it can be especially difficult.

7 Ways to Build Your Facebook Fan Base

Sazbean

Wondering how to get more fans (and keep them) to your Facebook page? You could just run some Facebook ads with a give away incentive, but that may just temporarily increase the number of fans, but not help increase engagement on your page. Creating an engaged and interested fan base takes a bit of work and planning. 360i Report: 7 Ways to Fuel Fandom. View more presentations from 360i.

Impact of Google Algorithm Change on B2B Companies

Sazbean

LeadFormix recently put together a study on the recent Google algorithm changes on their B2B clients. LeadFormix is a cloud-based Marketing Automation platform that helps identify and create sales opportunities by measuring website visitor intent. Their report is based on search traffic data and Google keyword position data gathered for some of their clients. They’ve found that: The change in Google’s algorithm generally has worked in favor of B2B companies. Google has rewarded websites that have relevant and useful content by improving their rankings in the search results.

11 Ways to Improve Your Business Website

Sazbean

Yesterday we explored 7 reasons why business websites are still important. Once you’ve decided that your business website is a vital part of your online strategy, how do you improve it to make it work better for your business? Let’s take a look at ways you can improve your business website. Please feel free to add your own tips in the comments. Customer Needs – The #1 way to improve your business website is to have a clear understanding of your customer and potential customer needs. Why do they visit your website? What type of information are they looking for?

Marketing Optimization Toolkit: The Science behind Marketing Analytics

Marketers are well-versed in the art and science of optimization.

Google AdWords Auctions Explained

Sazbean

Thanks to our friends over at WordStream, we have this great infographic which explains the whole Google AdWords auction process.  By they way, WordStream has some great AdWords tools , some of which are free. 2011 WordStream – a certified AdWords partner. Internet Advertising News & Notes SEO

Digging in the Cache – O RLY?

Sazbean

Just like anything on the Internets, the response “O RLY?” ” has it’s roots in hardcore geek culture. The photo of a surprised looking owl with the words “O RLY?” ” added was originally used in the Something Awful forums as a response to anything that may have been found boring, doubtful or unimpressive. The correct response to “O RLY?”

An Example of Using Social Media to Improve Customer Service and Increase Brand Loyalty & Reputation

Sazbean

Many businesses really miss the boat when it comes to providing content and value that their customers want. Here is an example of a salesperson providing great customer service using Twitter by providing personalized offers that his customers actually want. Anyway, I forget all about @NordstromDave. Now this is customer service. What do you think? photo by Simon_sees , on Flickr).

The Dangerous Allure of Speed in Social Media

Sazbean

I’m not exactly sure where companies got the idea that social media is a quick fix. Pay for a bunch of followers and BAM! you’re rich! Sure, there are ways to shortcut social media by basically paying for numbers (followers, fans, traffic). There is a dangerous allure in the empty promise of speed in social media. Talk about a total waste of money. But people (customers) are not stupid.

Content Marketing Playbook: Strategy and Roadmap

Every brand’s content roadmap is different; each path to success is unique to that brand’s story, perspective, assets, and goals. But there is an overarching approach that’s proven to work—one we’ve refined after helping hundreds of brands reach their content marketing goals and after speaking with some of the brightest minds in the industry.

3 Methods for Connecting Marketing & Sales

Sazbean

Having problems getting sales and marketing to work together? After yesterday’s post, Missing the Boat by Not Connecting Sales to Marketing , Ben Slayter asked for some help with methods to integrate marketing and sales. What will work for your organization depends on a lot of issues, including personnel, politics, organizational structure, and executive management, just to name a few.

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Social Media in 15 Minutes Per Day

Sazbean

Social media really is most effective when you put together a strategy, have a plan for implementation and can devote at least an hour per day to engagement and content production. The reality is, most small businesses just can’t find an hour per day (sometimes even per week). While it may not be the most effective way to use social media, just 15 minutes per day can gain you some benefits.

Finding Keywords for Social Media Content & Monitoring

Sazbean

As I mentioned yesterday, in 7 Social Media Monitoring Essentials , fortunately or unfortunately, keywords are a part of life on social media (and the Internet). Keywords are how search engines provide results and keywords are how we find what we’re looking for. So how do you go about finding the right keywords for your content (and to monitor)? First, find your target audience online.

Common Sense Guidelines for the Legal Use of Social Media

Sazbean

There are legal and best practice guidelines for how social media should and can be used by companies ( Disclaimer: I don’t claim to be a lawyer. For legal guidance on these issues, please seek one out). The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has governance over trade and advertising in the U.S. and they have set up guidelines for how social media should be used by companies. Thoughts?

B2B Marketing Trends for 2016

25 B2B marketing thought leaders answer the question "What do you expect to B2B marketers to be doing more of or differently in 2016?" The results are amazing insights around content marketing, achieving business results, alignment, employee advocacy, new technologies, customer experience and more.

Content Can Make or Break a Social Media Strategy

Sazbean

While many businesses have decided that social media is important, sometimes they don’t give it any more thought than to setup a Facebook page and a Twitter account. Unlike more traditional marketing channels (print, tv, radio), it’s relatively easy to get started with social media. Broadcast vs. Participation. Audience Needs vs. Your Needs. People are very selfish.