5 Marketing Statistics that You Should Not Ignore in 2016
Have you been keeping up with the latest digital marketing trends for this year? If you are like most, it can be tough to find the time to stay abreast of the best practices and techniques to keep in mind. This can place you at a very real disadvantage and you could soon find that your organization is suffering as a result. To save time and energy, let's take a look at the top five trends which experts believe will dominate the remainder of this year.
According to the latest sources, marketing automation will have a 20% greater impact within the digital world when compared to 2015 (1). There are two reasons behind this observation. First, specialists are increasingly realizing that they require a greater amount of flexibility in terms of time to connect with their audiences. Automated software can help to bridge this gap. Secondly, the software itself is becoming more advanced and intuitive. For example, the free Inbound Marketing System called Markethive, is a Market-Network that has all the marketing tools you could ever need, it's a content marketer's "dream come true"!
This trend has actually carried over from last year, and for good reason. We have always said that content is king, and these days, its reign is supreme. Generic texts and other “fluff” simply won't do the trick in 2016. Content needs to be centered around the needs of the user as opposed to the search engine. Organic content will rank higher and generate more interest; both important to increasing conversion rates.
This is another metric that cannot be overstated. Once again, mobile-friendly architecture should really come as no great surprise. Recent figures have pointed out that there are no less than 7.19 BILLION active mobile phones in the world (2). This is higher than the population of the earth! Smart marketers are now understanding that the future of any digital campaign relies upon tapping into this massive infrastructure. Be ready to see most pages optimized for mobile phones as well as the humble app take its place within the forefront of advertising.
While this hardware has been around for the past five years or so, it is only recently that it has become affordable for the average consumer. From smart watches to Oculus Rift and other unique devices, it seems as if the dreams of science fiction writers are soon to become a reality. Where does wearable technology fit into the world of digital marketing? Many companies are now developing unique applications to enhance the products that they are offering. In doing so, they hope to tap into a tech-savvy demographic that represents the younger generation. 2016 is likely to be the first year in which such an approach hits the mainstream market.
Better CRM and CMS systems have given rise to the prevalence of big data within the marketing world. It is now easier to interpret and implement observations such as buying habits, user demographics and location. This should all enables businesses to better target their existing audience while also expanding this audience to include a wider consumer base. However, the downside to this is that competition is likely to be quite fierce. This is the main reason why by data needs to be combined with small data in order to address the very human side of any sales campaign.
We can see that some trends are a continuation of the previous year while others could very well define the ways in which marketing campaigns are constructed into the future. Recognizing these tendencies is the first step towards developing an effective strategy while placing all of your efforts in the right direction.
Everything on the Internet is monitored in some way. Companies track what you do at work through deep packet inspection to make sure you don't wander into territory forbidden by company policy, or dump corporate data to a remote server just before you give notice. The Web pages you visit and the HTML-based mass e-mails you open are logged and tracked by advertisers and marketers. And your boss can tell if you've ever opened that urgent message or not.
But people usually don't throw it in your face and shatter whatever remaining illusions of privacy you might have, as someone did to my colleague Andrew Cunningham today."Oh, man, a PR person was just totally creepy at me," he interjected over IRC this morning.
The "creepy" was an e-mail that a media representative for a company called ContactMonkey sent on the heels of another one Cunningham had just opened. The second message included information about his location, the e-mail client he had used to open it, and the exact time it had been opened.
The message and the data were a demonstration of Bridge, a $5-a-month service that installs a plugin for Microsoft's Outlook 2010 mail client and for Google's Chrome browser for use with GMail. Bridge gives anyone the power to know those details for any message they send—or at least any message that lands in the inbox of someone who trustingly opens e-mails without blocking HTML-embedded images.
That's because Bridge uses an embedded graphic with a unique Web address to track each message. That Web address includes calls to ContactMonkey's tracker API, which include a message identifier and the e-mail address of the sender. When the recipient opens a tracked e-mail, it sends a secure Web request back to ContactMonkey's server identifying the message, and the server records the IP address that the message was opened from and the date and time. Then it pushes back data to the sender, including how many times the message was viewed, the geographic location it was viewed at (based on the IP address), and the type of client it was viewed from (based on what the mail client reports as its type when it makes the HTML request).
Using graphics to collect metrics is an old hack, going back to the "sprites" used on many early personal Web pages to track page views. Web request based tracking is also heavily used by both legitimate large-scale e-mailers and spam factories to collect information such as when and where e-mails are opened, and to test the "hit rate" for various subject lines and offer teases.
But ContactMonkey gets even more personal about it, because it identifies each recipient explicitly, and reports back directly on them. It's a technique akin to those used by some "spear-phishing" attacks to inject code into e-mails—no, it doesn't execute code on the client. But it does create a way to collect information that might be useful for stalking someone.
Sweeping for bugs
There's an easy way to block this sort of tracking with most mail clients. Microsoft Outlook, for example, will allow users to block embedded graphics in e-mails from all sources, or only display them in e-mails from sources in the user's contact list. Most companies will set their mail systems to block HTML-embedded objects in messages for security purposes.
Users of Apple's Mail app have a little less fine-grain control—unchecking "Display remote images in HTML messages" in Mail's "Viewing" preferences blocks all HTML-embedded images from loading when you open a message. But that's not the case with some mobile and Web-based mail clients—the iOS Mail app and Android 4's built-in mail client, for example, both open HTML enclosures by default. That means if you open a bugged e-mail from a mobile device, the sender will be able to get information on where you are based on whatever IP address gets associated with your phone or tablet, whether it's via Wi-Fi or your cellular provider.
If you do get tracked and discover it, however, there are some interesting ways to disrupt the tracking. For example, you could clip the tracking tag from the email and post it as a graphic or link on a website.
But that something like Bridge can be so easily blocked, and that it takes advantage of technologies that most business users may consider to be a security threat, should be enough to discourage most legitimate users from trying to use the service. After all, it's really just a sneaky way of doing the same thing that a Return-Receipt-To e-mail header does, without giving the recipient a choice. And very few legitimate mass-mailers generate their e-mails from Outlook or GMail.
So that makes Bridge the provenance of a very narrow strip of users, one that includes stalkers, private investigators, ex-spouses and high-pressure salespeople—and the occasional public relations consultant.
Markethive Groups The Champion of the Cottage Industry
noun: cottage industry; plural noun: cottage industries
a business or manufacturing activity carried on in a person's home.
Like Facebook, Groups is a more focused culture gathering to have topic discussions based on the Groups theme.
Unlike Facebook, Groups is the center of all the tools of the system. Let’s start with the blogging platform.
The Group blogging platform is a unique platform published to from the group members who choose to publish to that platform. The Markethive blog system also utilizes plugins so that content can be directed to one or more WordPress blogs.
This allows you to build a team of marketers all working together for a common cause contributing content for the Markethive blog platforms and WordPress distribution (reach).
SEO Backlinks management is another group function where the group organization utilizes the Backlinks system to build white hat links for specific campaigns.
Co-op Advertising Campaigns Financing: Press releases, Youtube video ads, Facebook Ads, Google ads can easily be financed with an internal co-op campaign.
Membership Management Reports: As Admin, you can review activity reports for the members in your group. Login activity, blogging in the group, Backlink activity, Massaging responsiveness, etc. Allow decisions based on activity to determine ejecting non responsive members.
Rotators: Used to distribute traffic coming to the Group blogs, or Co-op traffic to designated sites or capture pages. Or distributed traffic for any reason. Similar to the Co-op campaign is the ability to acquire leads, customers or distributor in a co-op function and distribute the leads, customers, etc. accordingly.
Asset Map: A management system whereas displays the relational connections between, capture pages, profile pages, blogs, social networks, press releases etc.
Group Messaging: Communication with your group members is well managed with the group function messaging system.
Replicating PDF documents:
A Markethive group is like a Cottage Industry. You can use Groups to build a startup business, a professional service, a power network marketing team, nothing like it before, like building a startup service with no overhead. This is the promise of the new Market Network (contrasted to the old Social Networks) That is exactly what Markethive is.
Case in point: Chris Corey, Annette Schwindt, Stephen Hodgkiss and I have formed a new corporation called Wavefour Inc. This corporation is negotiating a marketing campaign with a new client that is hiring us to run an agent acquisition, reach, Craigslist, capture page campaign, having the potential to create over $500k for us when we reach target. This is exactly why we built Markethive, a market environment designed to incubate, support and enable small, moderate and large business.
And Markethive Groups is the epicenter of all of this. Welcome to the new Market Network of the future. Markethive!
When Out Bound Marketing and I separated our ways for good!
In 1996 or there about, I was approached by a well-known marketer, David D’Arcangelo. We were associates at that time in the Network Marketing business and we both lived in San Diego. He pitched me on a new deal he felt was a considerable advantage in the industry, had an organization begun (He has a large sphere of influence from his radio shows). He was proposing he run major ads in papers like USA Today, etc. and round robin the incoming leads to the new distributors. He felt that he and I could work together on this and build a sound solution for the ‘rank and file” recruits. With his name and advertising and the advantage I had because I owned a big marketing system (which came to be known as Veretekk).
I enrolled about 10 people based on this agreement and we scheduled our first tele bridged conference call. My wife Annette (my girlfriend at the time) and I were excited before the call began. On the call nothing was said about a Co-op distribution round robin. What did transpire, was David took control of the call from me, then quickly introduced his friend John Green and pitched the leads John Green was selling from CuttingEdgeMedia (This is my recollection). John Green and David claimed they were awesome pre interviewed leads and cost $20 each.
Annette immediately expressed her anger that we had been baited and switched, and the call was a disaster. I was also angered as I have always found buying leads a foolish pursuit. Ho9wever, this time< I wanted to use these leads to conduct a real survey.
I paid for 100 leads, about $2000 for the 100 super hot, pre interviewed hot ready to join my business leads. I also bought the USA Today white pages on CD Rom as a control subject.
I spent 4 weeks and tracked the results in an Excel Spread sheet. I called every lead in that database. I called everyday of the week. At 3 different times for each lead at 10am, 2pm, and 6pm. I also called Saturdays at 12 noon and 8 pm in their time zone until I actually talked to someone.
Of the John Greene leads 80% of the list was contacted. 20% never answered or numbers were disconnected or wrong numbers. Of the remaining 80% I was able to talk to 80% said very nasty profanity at me, demanded I remove them from the list, and were extremely angered and some threatened me with legal action. Even when I explained I was doing “lead” research, told them who sold them and that they were supposedly interviewed.
Not one was interviewed. Either they called me a liar or the provider a liar or said they had no recollection of being interviewed. There were 2 out of the 100 who expressed some interest in the business, but further calls were never answered and nothing ever came from these halfhearted interests.
USA Today leads
In sharp contrast I must report on the 100 names and phones numbers I pulled from the USA Today white pages disk as a control to the research. Of the 100 I called on the same routine, 97% connected. Not one of them expressed anger, called me names or hung up on me. Most of them were still not interested, but I did get 12 very interested to join and 3 actually did join.
This is Outbound Marketing
This technique to cold call is a daunting process even back in the days, even for professionals. Today it is virtually a total waste of time. When people do answer and don’t know who you are 96% just hang up. The others usually take some time to insult you. It is over. Outbound marketing is now a total waste of time and money.
It is time to understand Inbound Marketing
So I have produced this blog and video for the Dummies out there. It is Inbound Marketing for Dummies. If you are ever going to find success, you are going to have to embrace, understand and intitiate the process called Inbound Marketing.
You are in luck, because Markethive is one of the top state of the art, “Inbound Marketing” platforms in the world and it is the only one that is free!
Inbound Marketing For Dummies
By now you probably heard some of the buzz about inbound marketing. But just what exactly is it?
Inbound marketing is like marketing with a magnet vs. a megaphone. Its marketing based on quality content, that attracts a steady stream of qualified leads.
At this point and time outbound marketing has completely lost it edge. Did you know that the average person sees anywhere from 3000 to 20,000 outbound advertisements per day? No wonder no one is paying any attention.
Shouting at your audience with a megaphone is no longer the most cost-effective or productive way of marketing your business, Inbound Marketing is. The cool part is that inbound marketing methods are almost always less time-consuming and less expensive than traditional lead generation methods.
Not only are they cheaper but they are more effective. Inbound leads are eight times more likely to become customers, and close at a much higher rate. In fact while outbound marketing has an average closing rate of 1.7%, inbound marketing has an astounding closing rate of 14.6%.
All that savings means the companies that Focus primarily on inbound marketing, typically spend 62% less per lead than companies that don't. So how does it work?
Think of it like a giant funnel, prospects come in at the top, happy customers come out the bottom. Today 88% of consumers are conducting their own product research online before making a purchase.
Therefore the key to being found and trusted on the web is generating relevant content to what people are searching for. This is the first part of our inbound marketing funnel. Once you have their attention we need to capture their information.
Generally this is done with more awesome content in the form of digital media such as free offers, articles, case studies, videos, free services and more. The next part of our marketing funnel is where we create an automated system, by which we turn these qualified leads which came in from our offers into Happy paying customers, who refer more new customers because of all the awesome content you're putting up.
At Markethive we deliver inbound marketing methods such as SEO, Broadcasting, Capture Pages, Social Media, massive reach, Work Groups, Co-op Advertising videos, and so much more, to establish you as the authority in your industry, and create a client magnet that will generate a constant stream of qualified leads just for you. Let us help you to establish an online presence, attract new leads, and convert prospects all on autopilot.
Barack Obama may have finally destroyed America’s #1 advantage
In July 1944, just weeks after the successful Allied invasion of Normandy, hundreds of delegates from around the world gathered in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire to determine the future of the global financial system.
The vision was simple: America would be the center of the universe, and every other nation would revolve around the US.
This arrangement ultimately led to the US dollar being the world’s dominant reserve currency which still remains today.
Whenever a Brazilian merchant pays a Korean supplier, that deal is negotiated and settled in US dollars.
Oil. Coffee. Steel. Aircraft. Countless commodities and products across the planet change hands in US dollars, so nearly every major commercial bank, central bank, multi-national corporation, and sovereign government must hold and be able to transact in US dollars.
This system provides a huge incentive for the rest of the world to hold trillions of dollars worth of US assets– typically deposits in the US banking system, or US government bonds.
It’s what makes US government debt the most popular “investment” in the world, why US government bonds are considered extremely liquid “cash equivalents”.
As long as this system continues, the US government can continue to go deeper into debt without suffering serious consequences.
Just imagine being totally broke… yet every time you want to borrow money there’s a crowd of delighted lenders eager to replenish your wallet with fresh funds.
This may be the US government’s #1 advantage right now.
You’d think that they would be eternally grateful and take care to never abuse this incredible privilege.
But no… not these guys.
In fact, they’ve done the exact opposite. Over the last eight years the US government has gone out of its way to eliminate as much of this benefit and alienate as many allies as possible.
They’ve abused the trust and confidence that the rest of the world placed in them by racking up record amounts of debt, waging indiscriminate wars in foreign lands, and dropping bombs on children’s hospitals by remote control.
They’ve created absurd amounts of regulations and had the audacity to expect foreign banks to comply.
Plus they’ve levied billions of dollars worth of fines against foreign banks who haven’t complied with their ridiculous regulations.
(Last week, for example, New York state financial regulators fined a Taiwanese bank $180 million for not complying with NY state law.)
And they’ve threatened to banish any foreign banks from the US financial system who don’t pay their steep fines.
Abuse. Deceit. Extortion. Not exactly great ways to win friends and influence people.
It’s as if Barack Obama pulled together the smartest guys he could find to make a list of all the ways the US government would have to screw up in order to lose its enormous financial privilege… and then he went out and did ALL of them.
The US government is practically begging the rest of the world to find an alternative to the US dollar and US banking system.
Even the government of France, a key US ally, called into question continued US dominance of the global financial system after the US government slammed French bank BNP Paribas with a $9 billion fine.
There have already been some attempts to displace the United States in the financial system.
China has been aggressively setting up its own competing financial infrastructure, something called the China International Payment System.
It’s been a slow start for the Chinese, but they’re building momentum. Though I’m not sure China is the answer in the long run.
While banks around the world may not care for the long and strong arm of the US government, the Chinese government doesn’t exactly inspire trust either.
But now there really is an alternative. Technology.
Ripple, a blockchain-style protocol that’s funded by Google Ventures (among others), is now being utilized by international banks to send and receive transactions directly.
The way international bank transfers work now relies exclusively on the US financial system.
Large foreign banks have what’s called a “correspondent account”, typically at a major US bank like JP Morgan, Citibank, etc.
A correspondent account is essentially a bank account for other banks. Our company holds funds at a bank in Singapore, for example, whose US dollar correspondent account is at Bank of New York Mellon.
Foreign banks’ US dollar correspondent accounts are typically at major Wall Street banks because that’s the epicenter of US dollar transactions.
So when a bank in Australia sends US dollars to a bank in South Africa, that payment actually flows from the Australian bank’s correspondent account in the US to the South African bank’s correspondent account in the US.
The entire transaction effectively takes place using the US banking system.
Again, this gives the US government enormous power over foreign banks. Any foreign bank that doesn’t do what Uncle Sam commands can be excommunicated from the US banking system.
And without access to the US banking system, a foreign bank will be unable to transact in US dollars, and hence unable to conduct any global business.
This is a death sentence for a bank. The US government knows this and has been blackmailing global banks for years.
But now technology is providing another option.
Banks don’t have to use the US banking system anymore; they can send real-time payments internationally using the Ripple protocol.
Two months ago a Canadian financial services company sent the first-ever institutional cross-border payment to a German bank.
This isn’t some wild theory or conjecture. It’s actually happening.
Just this morning a group of 15 banks in Japan signed up to start using Ripple, and dozens of banks plan to use the protocol within the next six months.
The technology is cheaper. Faster. Superior. And it doesn’t come with any US government strings attached.
So it seems Uncle Sam may have finally shot himself in the foot for the last time.
is the only system that does not violate good email practices
Companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales-ready leads at 33% lower cost. (Forrester Research)
(Or, how to build an effective email auto responder campaign primarily attracting your outside leads via capture pages, to join through you in Markethive’s Social Network. Then we, as a team, continue to turn your leads into raving advocates and your best friends. Remember, Markethive is your partner)
What we are not and never will be
Let me explain what the traditional nurturing systems do and how we do not utilize their spying bad email practices. First, let me illustrate how traditional email nurturing works. A typical corporate inbound marketing email system uses hidden image pixels within their email that reports back to the server, the IP address, email address, geo location and when that email is opened and how many times it is opened and the dates and times it is opened.
Now what Lead Nurturing is really all about according to Markethive
Selling in today’s market isn’t for the timid or inexperienced marketer. Today’s prospects are researching according to their needs and on their terms, and they expect treatment accordingly and with respect. They are drawn towards companies and services that are personalized, friendly and timely. As marketers we must be ready to meet each prospective customer on their terms their way.
How can you make sure you are sharing the right information at the right time, and getting it to the right person? Markethive’s lead systems automate this process for you. As an entrepreneur seeking to attract likeminded entrepreneurs, Markethive’s Alpha Workshop systems, gently coach your leads (your children) through a learning and awareness program. This program rewards your “leads” (your children) to expand their profiles (IE: Phone numbers, Skype address, multiple Social Networks, keeping the email current, etc.) This process wields you to your leads, prospects (now you know why we call them children) for life.
Unlike the “other” traditional vertical systems, Markethive’s workshops, tools, and social networks, develop your prospects into well educated, integrated members of your own social network within the Markethive overall system.
When your “campaigns” bring in “leads” at the core of your custom Markethive auto responders, should always include an invite into the Markethive environment via your automatically “dripping” relevant messages to your leads over time.
The Markethive system can address various products of interest, pain points, common objections during the sales cycle, and more, depending upon your targets and goals, the number of campaigns you build the crossover of these campaigns and your eventual goal being to turn prospects into subscribers, subscribers into customers and those customers into lifelong friends.
With Markethive’s campaign systems, your system’s customers are placed on a track based on what we know about them. You’re learning more about your customers every day — as they learn more about you — so the nurturing process is a two pronged arena, both from your customized systems and the Markethive Social Network. Eventually all your leads become associated with you becoming your “children” or family for life, obviously you becoming the “parent”.
Stop wasting time.
If you engage a “child “lead too early, you have to spend a lot of time explaining what your solution does and pitching the value. Nurturing has the power to significantly speed up your connected cycle by taking care of some of that education before a lead even becomes active within the Markethive Network. It’s effective for both those actively evaluating your brand, and those who aren’t quite there yet — just make sure you use data to deliver the right message.
Markethive sees to it your leads are raised up effectively preparing them to embrace working with you and appreciating the power of the Markethive system and the incredible ease of the learning venture.
No longer deal with Dormant Leads
Today we are strapped for time and resources. If you’re balancing multiple priorities and doing everything manually, it’s easy to go too long without checking up on your leads. Markethive fills the gap with our constant offering and rewards for our automated and live marketing workshops. These workshops address all the power of the Markethive platform, turning your "lead“" (children” into virtual marketing warriors.
When you add your own flavor to this process, your “children” become loyal lifetime clients, friends and associates for life.
So it makes sense to add the invite to join your Markethive family to all your autoresponder campaigns with Markethive capture pages and widgets.
Building your own Campaigns to nurture your array of leads
Markethive’s core focus is building your portfolio of Markethive “children” leads into powerful allies joining you to improve your overall marketing effectiveness and reach.
Depending on the type of capture lead you develop; here are a few examples to build your capture page leads into members of your business, team, agenda, etc.
Welcome emails in response to a particular offer are highly anticipated, frequently opened, and simple to automate. By turning your welcome emails into a nurturing campaign, you can begin to establish a lasting relationship. In the initial email, remember to remind them why they converted, confirm their opt-in, and let them know what to expect from your program. Then, start providing them with light, educational content to build awareness and keep them interested. Be sure to keep it targeted based on the offer they converted on and especially invite them to join Markethive as your special member offering them the many incentives Markethive offers. Invite them to your Markethive blogs and Groups to join and experience the power and family of the Markethive experience.
The top-of-mind drip is designed to engage with your leads at regular intervals, preventing leads from forgetting about your company and getting swooped up by your competitors. This drip takes place over a longer period of time, providing sales with consistent touch points, and uses content primarily focused on value to the prospect. For early-stage leads, make sure to choose the right content. Start engaging them with interesting Markethive blog posts, helpful third-party content, and other content around related topics, and watch for key activities that indicate they are interested in learning more about your actual offering. Engaging in your blogs or joining your groups signals your leads are ready to upgrade to the culture of the Entrepreneur and join you in Markethive as a premium lead (we call them childen).
Have an old list on Aweber or another email service? Here is an idea. Not all of your prospects will make it through this process. But by consistently inviting your lead databases on the other email systems, to engage in your Markethive blogs, join your Markethive groups or come subscribe and experience the difference with the first Market Network called Markethive. Markethive’s workshops make your leads become family. And that makes for a loyalty program that lasts a lifetime.
As prospects progress through the sales process and begin to seek out more product-focused content, you’ll want to make sure they’re getting the right product information from your series of auto responders, instead of a competitor or biased third party. Focus on your prospects’ pain points, how your product can address them, and the key features and benefits that will help along the way. For this type of drip, you’ll want to invite them to Markethive Groups regarding the case studies, customer testimonials, data sheets, and more in-depth white papers found there. Be sure you have visibility into all touchpoints with your customers so that you can tailor your conversations based on activity history. Remember; produce auto responders that engage your leads to continue the reading via your Markethive blogs (In other words, do not tell the whole story in your email). This is where you will be able to convert many of your leads into raving maniacs!
This type of campaign focuses on differentiating your product or service from your competitors by highlighting the advantages of using your product, as well as the disadvantages of not using it (note: you’ll want to refrain from harping on the disadvantages of your competitors’ products, since this can come off as distasteful). Focus your content on the priorities of your prospects and the competitors that come up in deals with your company. A general differentiator campaign can be effective, but if you know that a customer is currently using or evaluating a particular competitor, you can really position your product to win. Invite them to a special Group that is being set up to evaluate the different products and reporting within that Markethive Group. Access to the Groups does require Markethive (free) subscription and this is exactly what you want with all your contacts. To work within the Market Network of Markehive.
Industry Expertise Drips
As prospects move closer to the middle of the funnel (register for a Markethive account), it becomes important to reinforce that your company is the right choice. Pass on any helpful press releases, industry reports, or high-traffic content as part of this drip to establish your company’s authority. For example, if your company was recently covered by an analyst report, be sure to share it with your prospects and put your own spin on the review. Make sure all relevant information is available in Markethive Blogs and Groups.
As your prospects near the purchase stage of the sales funnel, a well-timed promotion or special discount can be just the catalyst they need. (Markethive has numerous services to offer for this) Consider offering special pricing or additional features based on their individual needs, especially if you’re working with bigger accounts where closing the deal is critical to growing your business. This also works well for companies that use a free trial model. The right offer near the end of the trial can help encourage customers to commit. (Like I keep saying, with Markethive’s Hive Portals and other powerful services for free, building a huge organization of customers, clients, friends and advocates, is real easy)
Onboarding a new client will always be a high-touch and manual process, and rightly so. However, nurturing campaigns allow you to automate some of the more repetitive tasks involved in onboarding, like providing introductory training resources, a list of next steps after close, timelines for product kickoffs, and frequently asked questions. These helpful resources can help your new clients get started on their own, without having to wait on a customer service rep for assistance.
The upsell (or cross-sell) campaign is designed to capitalize on your existing clients. By providing your clients with information and incentives to expand the list of products they are using, you can drive more revenue with little effort. Just be sure to focus your message around the benefits of the new offering, and remember to use a tone that feels friendly and approachable to your customers.
Renewal nurtures can be a convenient way to remind your existing customers that it is time to renew their contracts. This drip can be triggered a month (or more) before the renewal date, send multiple reminder emails over a specified period of time, and notify the assigned account manager if no action takes place. This makes it far less likely that your clients will miss the renewals on their contracts, and takes the tedium out of the process for your service reps.
How Lead Nurturing Usually Works
The benefits of implementing a lead nurturing program are pretty self-explanatory, but how does nurturing actually work? Let’s take a look at some of the mechanics behind nurturing to see the steps involved in setting up a successful nurturing program.
1. Choose the type of campaign you would like to run. As discussed in the previous chapter, there are several different types of programs you can run based on what you want to accomplish. Are you hoping to revive inactive leads? Remind your current clients that renewals are fast approaching? Your next steps will hinge on this initial decision.
2. Choose the list you would like to nurture. Lists and segmentations are the reason that drip emails can be so highly targeted. If you want to nurture a specific segment of your database, sort these prospects or clients onto the same list. Need some inspiration to get your wheels turning? Try segmenting by specific locations, certain product segments, new users, or leads who have been cold for longer than six months. You can use logic rules to filter your prospects accordingly; this will also ensure any new prospects entering your database are evaluated and added to the campaign automatically.
3. Build up your flow and decide on your content.
Once you’ve decided which list to target with your campaign, you’re ready to develop your drip campaign and choose your content. There are several items to consider here:
• How often will you be sending drip emails to this list? This will depend on the type of campaign you’re running. If you have a long sales cycle and are targeting a list of inactive leads, consider spacing emails further apart. Other emails, like training emails or time-sensitive renewals, might be spaced closer together. As a general rule of thumb, we recommend sending emails between six and 30 days apart (to prevent sending more than one email in one week, or going more than a month between touch points).
• How complex do you want your drip campaigns to be? Your nurturing tracks can be as simple or as complicated as you want — it all depends on the drip logic that you create. Nurturing campaigns can be set up linearly, where prospects will progress through them in straight lines, offering different action points to different capture pages, groups, blogs, profile page to eventually bring them all into the social environment of Markethive where the ultimate nurturing occurs.
• Don’t forget Markethive. With capture widgets that can be embedded into blogs, capture pages, landing pages, etc. any auto responder can easily branch but should always lead to your leads (that are not Markethive Members) to become Markethive Members, where the extreme nurturing takes place.
• What will trigger each prospect to move to the next stage of the drip program? Lead nurturing is a type of trigger-based marketing, a technique that allows marketers to deliver highly relevant messaging based on a prospect’s response or reaction to an offer. Marketers can use many differing incentives to pull from your flat leads list (limited to a name, email), whether in Markethive, Aweber, Get Response, Mail Chimp, etc. to come into the extreme nurture environment of Markethive.
Markethive the ultimate Lead Nurturing environment:
You invite a list of customers to register for an upcoming webinar. Those who register are thanked and sent a related blog post. Those who do not open their email or respond are undetected. Markethive uses only good email practices. Put spying agents into an email to determine if it gets opened goes against our privacy policies and good email practices.
A prospect on an early-stage education nurture accesses your latest e-book offer, views several key pages on your Markethive blog, or registers into your Markethive capture page to view a video. Their value shoots up quickly as they finally enter into the Markethive environment! Email drips should always include invites to join Markethive Membership. You get the upgrade notification, and quickly connect with her, seeing her activity history so you understand exactly what she’s interested in.
Markethive invented Inbound Marketing. We did this back in the 1990s with a company called Veretekk. Our primary drive was we found spam, telemarketer calls and email violation (bad email practices) wrong, distasteful and not effective. Back then the standard procedure was to buy a database, spam them, cold call them and beat them over the head. This did not work, violated my “Do Good” policies in general.
In building the first Inbound Marketing, I focused on attracting traffic and offering them valuable services for free in return for their contact information. Once subscribed to a traffic portal we nurtured them to subscribe to the “whole enchilada” the Veretekk membership, where we trained and empowered them and most upgraded there to become paying subscribers and advocating zealots.
That was 20 years ago. A lot has evolved, but the underlying principles of integrity and good practices still remains foundational to Markethive.
Thus we built the Inbound Marketing platform (Markethive) to always result in the “lead, prospect” to ultimately enter into the Markethive community where true nurturing can occur in the social environment. We offer this alternative so we can avoid utilizing email sniffing techniques that in the opinion of email security companies like SORBs and IronPort are violations of privacy and considered bad email practices.
How does an email sniffer work? When an email is sent it will have a 1 pixel coded image that alerts a script on the mother server when it displays. All image displays draw upon the server and live a log footprint, IP address, date stamp as well as other information transferred that is found in that image name string.
This is akin to spying and is why email clients like Gmail default your email to NOT display images. The only thing an email sender should tract in an email is its deliverability or if it bounced and why. (ie: Spam, Mail Box Full. No such client “server to server codes”). And we do report that data in our system.
This is an example tracking image link:
Enough said? Markethive offers Good Practices and a better Lead Nurturing environment and solution. There are no shortcuts with Markethive. We always do it right.
Social network. Marketplace. SaaS. These buzzwords are no longer synonyms of massive business opportunities.
The gold rush has already happened.
But a new business model has emerged.
Market-networks are hybrid animals: part social network, part marketplace, part SaaS. 
It’s a social network. Professionals use profile pages to showcase their work and demonstrate their credibility. They also connect with each other and build relationships.
It’s a marketplace. Professionals come online together to find other parties with whom they can do business.
It’s a SaaStool. Professionals use the tools on the top of the marketplace to negotiate, do the job, or manage the paperwork.
Social networks are designed to connect people. Marketplaces are built to sell simple products and services at scale. SaaS tools are here to make your job easier.
Market-networks focus on more complex services; the types of services that are not easily scalable and require more human collaboration. 
So get your pick-axe and prepare yourself for the next gold rush.
Think about the number of opportunities in M&A, scientific research, construction, management consulting, marketing, media production…
 Thanks to James Currier for sharing his thoughts on this emerging business model.
 Here are a couple of examples:
AngelList is a market-network.
It’s a social network for startups and investors. It’s a marketplace where business angels can find startups to invest in and startups can post job openings. It’s a SaaS tool that helps business angels create syndicates and startups get introduced to business angels.
Contently is a market-network.
It’s a social network for freelance writers. It’s a marketplace where companies can find writers to create content—articles, eBooks, and other kinds of marketing collateral. It’s a SaaS tool that helps content marketers organize their editorial calendar, manage the writers’ work, and track the performance with analytics.
Guerric de Ternay is an entrepreneur
and digital & marketing strategist. A large
chunk of his work focuses on behavioral
science, customer experience, and digital
strategy. His passion?
Helping people and businesses level up.
Markethive did not invent the blog, but we certainly have made it exponentially more powerful. We certainly have added fun, understanding, reach, groups, daily workshops, understanding and power to the process.
Markethive has successfully combined all the technical and tactical aspects and requirements into one system, but have also overcome the obstacles to make blogging a group process, combined with motivated mentors to help the newbie easily immerse and embrace the process.
We did not invent Word Press, but we have significantly taken Word Press serious and made it exponentially better. This blog’s focus is to help you understand the paradigm dynamic shift Markethive has brought to marketing, blogging and the individual within the hive.
The following video attempts to reveal and illustrate how the whole social blogging platform in Markethive changes the entire Internet field of engagement.
You can approach the challenge alone, hire a firm and/or a virtual assistance and take the Internet on. This ego centered approach works for many who have the grit and stamina and educated skills of journalism and polished writing (a note here: As the Internet has evolved, the polished blogger vs the blogger that lacks the polish but has the passion, wins in today’s culture).
Approaching the blogosphere as a crew, a group, a gang or a family wins today. Because fresh, new, consistent and current content win and win you combine a social network into a blogging platform, the results are impressive.
Understanding SEO isn’t easy, and Google doesn’t help things much by changing the algorithms and policies on a regular basis. Seems like every time we get a handle on things, the rules change, and we’re all left wondering what we’re doing wrong and what we might still possibly be doing right.
The whole SEO quotient changes when the social network variable is integrated. This is why SEO at Markethive changes the playing field.
So a social network integrated blogging solution is at hand, and, there’s one thing you may have been doing correctly already from the start: That being blogging. You probably have a million reasons to blog, not the least of which include building trust among your buyers, positioning yourself as an expert, and simply sharing news with your company’s followers. Then, of course, there are those activities that help to boost your SEO rankings. These can only help you if you know how to use them, so make note of these 9 reasons blogging can boost your SEO.
Enter the Markethive Social Network Engine combined with the Inbound Marketing Engine. Kind of reminds of the Hot Rods of the 60s like Eddie Hill’s double dragon (see image):
Except with Markethive, the combining the two huge engines of the Internet, Social Networking and Inbound Marketing has an exponential nature to it, not just a geometrical quotient.
This innovative integration of these two power houses has a powerful effect on all that ios Internet Marketing as I illustrate, please read on.
The following is the conventional wisdom perspective to today’s linking approach.
Some of the techniques used for SEO when blogging raise eyebrows, and back linking is no exception. Many will tell you link schemes will get you a slap on the wrist from Google, and they’d be right. Does that mean you can’t build relationships with other companies and blogs by including links and asking for some in return? Not at all.
You can still benefit greatly from being linked and linking to others, but there are some things to keep in mind. First, if you’ve paid for your link, be sure they use the nofollow designation. Otherwise, you’ll be penalized. Next, work with reputable, quality sites that fit your blog’s niche. When links to your blog appear on sites that have nothing to do with your company, you’ll get another ding from Google. Finally, use the same basic rules for any blogs you link to on your site.
Good quality links from popular, well-respected sites can definitely help your SEO rankings, but only if you do it right.
Now, with that said, the amazing change that occurs to your campaign to build organic, condust and create relationships in the blogging power of the Inbound Marketing Social Network of Markethive, delivers a plethora of SEO (Search Engine Optimization), SNM (Social Network Marketing) and the advantages therein if developing unlimited streams of unique content, automated into literally millions of sites, social networks, social bookmarks, blogging platforms from the stream of content that flows out of the Markethive Social Network you are part of or built.
So what does all that mean? As the natural order of our recent tech releases of the Blog Casting (Social Broadcaster) and Blog Swiping (where your friends and other members can easily copy and edit your blog) then publish it and with the advent of this opening the possibility with these new tools produce a cacophony of your content, links, back links, side links, social reaches into the millions. All built upon chaos theory and technology.
The natural organic process to build a huge amazing white hat mass of blog and site links and social reach, thereby, the vision of the Blog Cloud has come to be reality, thank you Markethive, the social networked Inbound Marketing juggernaut.
Simply put, not just combining but fully integrating two platforms, the Entrepreneurial Social Network and a fully appointed Inbound Marketing platform, has opened up doorways not otherwise capable or even aware of or identified in the exponential character of the Markethive Hybrid. Sort of like Twin Towers built on the same foundation.
Actually more like a million communities of twin towers all inter connected and pulsing and thriving with the constant flow of content and videos and communications (comments and messaging) even further empowered with a constant thriving community of live conference room activity.
Again Markethive takes the awkward and difficult process of guest blogging and turns it into a graceful social dance. I will explain after I share again the Internet’s explanation of what has been defined as guest blogging.
The latest hoopla suggests guest blogging is dead, but that’s not necessarily true. As with the backlinking, guest blogs can be tremendously beneficial to the SEO of your website. If you work with reputable writers who are indeed experts in their industry, their popularity can only help you.
For this tactic to work, you must be vigilant when screening potential bloggers. Interview them, research their backgrounds, and compare their submission to everything they’ve written before to make sure you get truly unique content. If you follow Google’s quality guidelines, your guest blog from a well-known source will bring you tremendous traffic and boost your search engine rankings.
Markethive has turned this difficult proposition into one of grace and ease. Because the core of your blogging can now be centered within Markethive, which supports and publishes to just about every blogging platform out there. As a social network, you can build a sphere of influence easily with others who are open to and or capable of assisting in your blogging efforts.
Groups also serve as additional blogging platforms, for the individual who keeps track of different campaigns separated by the groups. Groups also parlay into teams of content creators, allow a team captain to manage and lead the agenda and monitor and choose the array of articles by the group to which blog(s) that article automatically gets sent.
The options that the Markethive tools has created for diverse and distributed content is unlimited and better managed than any other option available in the blogosphere.
Group Blogging not only replaces the old guard of guest blogging, it enhances it, makes it easier to, manage and distribute. It changes the entire playing field.
You can integrate single Markethive members, and/or integrate entire groups into as many blog systems you wish. By simply organizing, selecting and developing different cock tails groups for your blogs, you can literally create unlimited selections and unlimited content for unlimited blogs, your blogs, their blogs, unlimited groups of competent writers and marketers. Get into the mix, join some groups, and get into some Workshops and put the system to work for you.
We can even say that you can produce dynamic content on your blog without as much effort as the conventional way.
Search engines love fresh, unique content. How often do the pages on your website change? Probably not very often at all. That’s why you must keep a steady blog filled with new information every week. Those search engines customers used to find companies just like yours will pull the freshest and most relevant content whenever a search is performed. If your site hasn’t been updated with new information in over a year, you can bet someone else’s will rank higher than yours in the results.
By blogging, you build relationships with your readers, position yourself as an expert in the field, and perhaps most importantly, provide new content for Google to index.
By joining Markethive you build relationships with thousands of others who are actively building business, blogging, researching, etc. basically being “entrepreneurs” and advancing their businesses and agendas. Often you can join with these people as friends, group members and subscribers of theirs via Blog Casting, Blog Sharing and Blog Swiping.
When you are an active member in a good group (active and current), using meetings and live webinars, discussions breed inspirations which support developing new content. Here is a tip I use to help with fresh content. I want to write about the “current trends for the entrepreneur market”. So I go to Google and I search the tail words SEO entrepreneur trends but I designate a small tool many are not aware of.
It is found in “Search tools” in the Google search as the illustration below demonstrates. Choose last week or within 24 hours to get very fresh current content to use in building your blog article. This way, you are assured to be utilizing current references building current articles, sharing with your groups and creating a dynamic culture. Checking new content with Google daily in relations to your agenda is something that should also be shared (the search link) within your groups for discussion.
Keywords go hand in hand with fresh content. It also pays to see what current or newest results are shown for current sites utilizing the same technique for current content for your research and agenda.
Even though keywords really don’t hold the same weight they once did, it still needs your attention. In fact, this is another aspect of SEO you can do really wrong and end up punished for. The age of cramming keywords into a blog over and over, regardless of what they add to the content, is over. Now those keywords have to serve a purpose. You really want to make sure you choose unique keywords that will lead searchers to your site but not so unique that no one thinks to use them. If you choose words that are used too often, you won’t get much benefit out of them.
Your best bet with keywords and search terms is to use long-tail keywords and phrases that people may use when searching. Instead of focusing too much on keyword placement and making sure you include the words a certain number of times, concentrate on simply answering questions. Provide knowledge for those who reach your site. They don’t need a million keywords; they need answers.
For instance, the long-tail keyword “Inbound Marketing” had barely begun trending in 2009 with a slow crawl upward until just recently, with the advent of Markethive’s soft launch and discussions of the definition of “Inbound Marketing” and the increase of Social Network chatter in that regards we are now seeing the current trend start to grow.
My first company invented what we called “Automated Marketing” but today fits the new definition “Inbound Marketing” As you can see the term “Automated Marketing” is trending down from a long crown of being a top searched keyword.
See the trend towards “Marketing Automation” beginning? Why is Marketing Automation trending up and Automated Marketing trending down? Does it deserve research?
In my opinion no, but, what does need to be looked at in my regards is our new pre launched/soft launched company (as of May7, 2016) is the Trademark “Markethive”.
Because if we read these trends right, we want to make sure we mention Markethive often in connection to “Inbound Marketing” and “Marketing Automation”. This will place squarely in front of the trend curve binding the “long tail” keywords together.
Markethive’s SEO keyword system leads us to these research outcomes, but until the Google API is fully integrated to Markethive’s Keyword platform I go to the Google Trend panel here as well.
When your blogs are shared and consequently clicked on, they move up in the search rankings. If you’re providing quality content, your readers will want others to know. Of course, the only way to make sure your blogs contribute to your website’s popularity is to create unique content, provide answers for visitors, and then share your blogs wherever you can.
That key point “Share your blogs wherever you can” is another way of saying “Broadcast” them. And Markethive has taken Broadcasting to new heights with Blog Casting and SNAP. Blog Casting is a Markethive subscribe feature that other Markethive members use to subscribe to your Markethive blog. When they subscribe (and the potential is 1000s of them), your blog posts are automatically posted to their Facebook Newsfeeds, LinkedIn activity feeds and your Twitter tweets feed.
When you understand that this down stream of subscribers, fellow entrepreneurs at MarketHive, are exposing their connections to your message, they are lifting you up, increasing your popularity and building greater branding for you.
Then there is the Blog Sharing feature that also allows your fellow Markethive entrepreneurs to import your blog posts to their WordPress blogs using the SNAP plugin increasing your message (your posts) to another 25 of their social networks, Facebook Pages, LinkedIn company pages, SumbleUpon, Tumbler, Livejournal, Blogspot, ets, exponentially increasing your exposure and adding to your back links.
When you discover the responsibility this represents that you show respect, produce quality content to your loyal downstream, you now have the opportunity to build a huge popular following. Markethive, The Rise of the Entrepreneur. We have put a great future in your hands. Now it is up to you.
Including images in your blog gives you one more way search engines can find you. Make sure you name them according to the search terms or keywords, and then do the same for the alt-text. The alt-text is meant to describe what’s in the image for those who don’t or aren’t able to see images on their computer screens. For this reason, your alt-text must be carefully crafted to serve two purposes: SEO and information.
I search a lot in images and so do others. They may be looking for an image to fill a need, the reasons vary, but a lot of traffic does come from image searching, so do not ignore this small duty. Alt tags serve an important batch of duties.
When installing images in the Markethive HTML control panel, the following Image control panel, second tab, is where to enter your keywords and descriptions.
When looking at the HTML code, this is exactly what ALT tags look like and search engines Index.
As with photos, video simply gives you more dynamic content that you can share with your readers. Remember they’re looking for excellent, unique content, so be sure you include only videos that serve a purpose. Proprietary videos are always the best bet, since syndicated content will show up on several different sites during a search result.
If you have never made a video, get some screen capturing software. I use Camtasia (cost about $300)
I also down load others videos to use them in my final productions. I build titles and other content with Photoshop Software, but there are other cheaper alternatives. Many of my friends recommend GIMP for image editing. https://www.gimp.org/
I recommend you make as many of your videos you can, but do not produce bad or funky videos. Today, you need quality and you are welcome to download and use all Markethive videos I produce for yourself.
Be sure you tag your videos with appropriate search terms before you post. Let readers know exactly what’s going on in the video so they can find your content in a search.
I know video editing and production can be daunting to many at first. However, we have plenty od excellent talent that offer video workshops in Markethive. Just check the calendar or enquire within the membership (Social Network).
Remember we are all Entrepreneurs and most of us are also philanthropic and want to help you succeed. I know I do.
Check the calendar
Believe it or not, Google also returns social media search results. If you connect your blog to your Facebook, Twitter, and other social media accounts, you give search engines one more thing to find when people look for your company. As long as you use search terms in your titles and meta descriptions, you’ll boost your SEO through social media listings, too.
A popular set of current wisdom pulled from the Internet void (5 Things to Think About When Considering The Impact of Social on SEO) :
1. Social Links May or May Not Boost Your Search Rank
Okay, social signals pertaining to a profile’s authority are out, but does Google consider links published on social accounts to be credible backlinks? When a blog post goes viral on Twitter, do those new links boost the post’s search ranking?
Many marketers believe that links to your website via social media accounts do have a major impact on your rankings. Says Marketing Consultant Brian Honigman:
Today, links are mainly achieved through developing original content that is in turn, shared across social media. Links to your content on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, YouTube and other social networks help the search engines understand what websites are credible and should be ranked for what keyword phrases.
In Danny Sullivan’s 2010 interview with Google and Bing for Search Engine Watch, Google first says that it doesn’t incorporate the number of times a link has been tweeted into their search rank algorithm, and then it goes on to say that it does (doh). Bing says that it definitely looks at this data:
We take into consideration how often a link has been tweeted or retweeted, as well as the authority of the Twitter users that shared the link.
While Cutts’ 2014 video is crystal-clear about the absence of social signals from the search algorithm, he does say that Google crawls social websites for data in the same way that it would any other site:
Facebook and Twitter pages are treated like any other pages in our web index, and so if something occurs on Twitter or occurs on Facebook and we’re able to crawl it then we can return that in our search results.
This leads me to think that while the authority of a social account doesn’t impact search rank, links published on social media could be marked as credible back-links and thus influence a page’s rank.
Takeaways: When Cutts made his statement about Google not factoring in social signals I understood him to mean clues about a particular company’s authority on social media, which, for me, is distinct from the number of times a page has been linked to on social media. Further research didn’t help me get much clarity on this point.
If there are any SEO experts reading this, I’d love for you to chime in below in the comments.
2. Social Media Profiles Rank in Search Engines
While social shares may or may not affect a webpage’s position in search listings, your social profiles definitely influence the content of your search results. In fact, social media profiles are often amongst the top results in search listings for brand names. When I searched “General Electric” in Google, the company’s Instagram and Pinterest profiles appeared as the 5th and 6th listings, respectively, and Twitter was the 8th result.
Moreover, Google displayed the company’s Google+ profile information in the right-hand sidebar at the very top of the search results page.
While social shares may or may not affect a webpage’s position in search listings, your social profiles definitely influence the content of your search results. In fact, social media profiles are often amongst the top results in search listings for brand names. When I searched “General Electric” in Google, the company’s Instagram and Pinterest profiles appeared as the 5th and 6th listings, respectively, and Twitter was the 8th result.
Social channels can feel more personal than webpages, and they’re a great way to get a sense of a company’s personality off the bat. When I’m researching a company I don’t know much about I typically go straight to their Twitter or Facebook page. So if a social account shows up at the top of the search results, I’m just as likely to click on it as I would be to click on their website.
Takeaway: There’s no doubt that your social profiles matter to Google and especially to people who are looking for you online. A few active social channels can make the experience of getting to know your brand online more fun, engaging and personal. Also, while some may consider Google+ a non-essential social channel, marketers shouldn’t discount the fact that a company’s Google+ profile is one of the first things a searcher will see (and potentially click on). As such, it pays to have a profile with up-to-date info and engaging content.
3. Social Media Channels Are Search Engines, Too
Nowadays, people don’t just go to Google and Bing to look stuff up; they also use social media channels to find what they’re looking for. Patel makes this point in his article on why social is the new SEO: “We need to understand that search engine optimization includes the search that happens on social media search engines.”
This works in a couple of ways: First, if you’re active on Twitter, it’s entirely possible that people will discover your company’s new content distribution app after searching for content marketing-related tweets with Twitter’s search engine. Likewise, brands that lend themselves to beautiful visual content can benefit from making their content visible in Pinterest and Instagram by using hashtags and properly categorizing their pins.
Moreover, as mentioned in point #1, if someone wants to check out your company, they’re likely to open Twitter and Facebook and do a quick search to see what kind of presence you have on each channel. YouTube, and, of course, Google+ are also search engines.
Here are some impressive stats that illuminate just how much people are using social media to search:
As of 2010, Twitter handled 19 billion search queries a month (that’s more than 5x the queries handled by Bing!).
In 2012 Facebook said it got around one billion search queries per day.
As of March 2010, YouTube got roughly 3.7 billion search queries a month. Also, 100 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute, making it one of the largest content repositories on the web.
Takeaways: Companies should expand their concept of SEO to include not just the traditional search engines––Google and Bing––but also social search engines.
When searching for a brand on Facebook or Twitter it’s not uncommon to see several different profiles pop up, and it’s not always clear which one is the real deal. Marketers need to ensure that it’s super easy for users to identify their official social profiles.
This may mean deleting duplicate accounts and/or clearly labeling each social account so that users understand what purpose they serve (for example, accounts for HR or press versus general brand pages).
4. Not Now Doesn’t Mean Not Ever
Just because Google says that social signals don’t currently impact search rank doesn’t mean they never will. Social media shows no sign of becoming a less important part of a brand or person’s online presence anytime soon; moreover, given that link-building strategies like guest blogging have become a less reliable way to indicate the quality of a webpage, it makes sense that search engines would begin to look for other signals of authority and value.
Takeaways: There’s no reason why social signals won’t begin to affect search rankings in the future, so smart brands will continue to build their authority in key social channels and think about social when designing their SEO strategy.
5. Don’t Forget Bing
Google may have back-tracked and changed their stance on social signals, but I haven’t found any evidence that what Bing told Sullivan for his Search Engine Watch interview doesn’t hold true today.
Remember, Bing said:
We do look at the social authority of a user. We look at how many people you follow, how many follow you, and this can add a little weight to a listing in regular search results.
Takeaways: Bing, which is the second most-used search engine, has been crystal clear about how their algorithm incorporates social signals into their search results, and, unlike Google, they haven’t flip-flopped on the issue. With its market share steadily growing, companies would be wise to include Bing in their SEO strategies.
Cutts’ claim that Google’s search algorithm ignores social signals should not be seen as an invitation for marketers to dismiss social’s impact on SEO. Instead, marketers should broaden their concept of search and SEO to take into account the myriad ways that people find content on the web. They also need to think about the positive effects that increased traffic from social can potentially have on their search rankings as well as the prominence of social profiles on first-page search results.
Ultimately, the web is all about building relationships, fostering audiences, expressing identity and sharing ideas––it’s inherently social, and there’s no reason that SEO best practices would go against the grain, especially since the rules that govern SEO are ultimately meant to make the web a more enjoyable and useful place.
Perhaps the most important reason of all to blog is the fact that each post counts as a new page on your website. Google really does like fresh content and will reward those who share frequently. Those who do include a business blog on their site will see up to 55% more traffic than companies who don’t. The reason for this is the indexed pages. For Google to index those pages, you need to include at least 300 quality words. That means reblogging, short blogs, and duplicating content won’t help you. There is a time and place for the previously mentioned blog types, but not when you’re hoping to boost your SEO.
Now that you understand why blogging is essential to improving your SEO results, you probably want to get started right away. Don’t get bogged down or feel overwhelmed. A systematic approach is what you need, starting with a content calendar. Simply start by answering those burning questions your potential customers have. Plan blogs that will touch on their pain points. You’ll see results sooner than you ever thought possible.
The Top Five Reasons Why Articles Beat Advertising in Terms of Marketing Content
Encountering the most effective marketing techniques is now more difficult than ever before. The good news is that if you understand a few simple concepts, you will be able to gain a valuable edge over your competitors.
We often hear such terms as SEO, web design, social media and big data. Still, one concept which is overlooked is the difference between an article and other forms of advertising such as pay-per-click services. Why are articles still thought to be the best way of reaching your audience and what advantages are they able to provide? The answers may surprise you!
The first point to make is that many articles are considered to be evergreen in terms of their content. In other words, the information that they provide is much longer lasting than a specific advertising campaign (1). So, their benefits will last for longer. Some illustrations of evergreen articles can involve:
• How-to lists
• Reviews of a specific product
• Video tutorials
These can be much more effective to generate repeat revenue than a short-lived advertisement.
The Long-Tail Edge
Long-tail keywords are now very important within the world of digital marketing. First, they are able to cater to the discrete needs of the individual performing an online search (2).
Long-tail keywords are also those used during the end of the buying process. Finally, these phrases are also to rank higher within the SERP; providing better online exposure. It is much easier to fit these keywords within an article when compared to an advertisement that relies on brevity. Examples can be:
• Cheap hotels in New York City
• The best website design software for 2016
Long-tail keywords will also appear to be less “clumsy” within a content-laden article.
Addressing the Client
Articles have always had a rather personal edge when compared to an advertisement destined for hundreds or thousands of potential consumers.
These days, people are more fickle than ever before in terms of what they choose to read. If they feel that their needs are not being addressed, they are much more likely to move on and look for greener digital pastures.
Articles have the innate ability to target these desires and therefore, the product or service being offered tends to be more appealing.
The Presentation Itself
Most (not all) advertisements tend to work with a limited amount of space or text. Whether referring to a pop-up ad or a widget within a website, only a certain number of details will be observed. It can be hard to convey the main points of your product within these confines.
Thanks to modern coding techniques, articles are able to offer videos, infographics, flash presentations and numerous links to other sites (think of a good SlideShare presentation as an example here). This can be accomplished without appearing to overwhelm the reader.
Qualified Calls to Action
Many individuals who click on a link within a short advertisement are only mildly curious. So, conversion rates will be rather low. When this very same link is placed at the end of the article, the reader is much more likely to take action. He or she is likely to have read the entire piece; thus appreciating what you are offering in more detail. So, qualifying nurtured leads is much more of a reality.
Now, this is not to say that advertising is useless within the digital domain. We are rather pointing out that a well-presented article can have a massively positive impact without detracting from the appeal of what it is that you are offering.