Tag Archive | "It’s"

SearchCap: It’s all about Google today–political ad transparency report, local packs, featured snippets launched & more

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.



Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.


Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing

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What Is A Strategy Versus A Tactic? (And Why It’s So Important You Understand The Difference)

Inside the Blog Profits Blueprint I talk about a key distinction, the difference between strategies and tactics when it comes to online marketing and building a blog-based business. Here’s a relevant quote from the Blueprint: Strategies are in place to educate your mind about why things happen. Strategy helps you understand outcomes and helps predict […]

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Entrepreneurs-Journey.com by Yaro Starak

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Beyond the Hype Cycle: It’s Time to Redefine Influencer Marketing

It's Time to Redefine Influencer Marketing

It's Time to Redefine Influencer Marketing

Every marketer should consider getting a tattoo of Gartner’s Hype Cycle, as a reminder to keep us from chasing shiny objects.

The Hype Cycle goes like this:

  1. A new hotness emerges. It could be new technology, a new strategy or tactic, some new thing.
  2. There are wild predictions about how the thing will revolutionize the world.
  3. People scramble to get on board with the thing before they even understand it.
  4. The new thing doesn’t measure up to elevated expectations.
  5. People get disillusioned with the thing and decide it’s worthless.
  6. People actually learn how the thing works, get sophisticated in using it.
  7. The thing turns out to be pretty awesome and is used productively.

Marketers are just as susceptible to the hype machine as anyone else is. More so, even. Think of content marketing: We went from “content is king” to “content shock” in just a few years, and we’re just now hitting the plateau of productivity.

Now it’s influencer marketing’s turn to ride the downhill slope to the trough of disillusionment. It’s inevitable. We started with high expectations, a ton of hype, and a lot of investment before people really knew what worked.

Now the backlash is hitting. The latest Sprout Social Index is particularly sobering. Only 46% of marketers are using influencer marketing. Only 19% said they had the budget for an influencer program. And on the consumer side, people say they’re more likely to take a friend’s recommendation on social media than take an influencer’s word for it.

In other words: The party’s over. Now the real work begins. It’s time to redefine influencer marketing, get more sophisticated, and get productive. Here’s how to get out of the trough:

#1 – Redefining Influence

In the B2C world (and even in the B2B realm), influence and celebrity are often treated as synonyms. Whether it’s Rhianna or Matthew McConaughey or Pewdiepie, it’s people who have audiences in the millions. There’s some differentiation for relevancy — this YouTuber does makeup tutorials, that one is a gamer — but it’s mostly a numbers game. It’s paying people with huge followings to throw some attention at your brand.

As Ursula Ringham, Head of Global Influencer Marketing for SAP*, told us in a recent interview on social and influencer marketing:

“People often think that influencer marketing is all about celebrities hawking a product. It’s truly not about that—especially in the B2B realm. It’s about highlighting experts who have real experience on the business challenges a brand’s audience faces.”

To become more sophisticated, you need to rethink what it means to be influential. Sure, a mega-star with a huge following is great — if they are relevant to your specific target audience and if their participation doesn’t break the bank.

However, you can get amazing results working with influencers like:

  • Thought leaders in the industry with a small but prestigious network
  • Experts with radical new ideas who are poised to become thought leaders
  • Subject matter experts within your own company
  • Prospective customers from influential brands you want to work with
  • Employees who will advocate for your brand given direction and material

That last one is crucial. Inspiring your internal influencers can give your content a massive boost in reach — LinkedIn* estimates that the average employee has a network 10x bigger than the brand’s social reach. Sprout says, in the key findings of their report:

“Social marketers in 2018 see the value in employee advocacy as a cost-effective, scalable alternative to influencer marketing.”

I would say “addition” rather than “alternative,” but it’s definitely an undervalued tactic.

Our experience is that a combination of industry and internal influencers can yield the most effective results. SAP Success Factors incorporated industry influencers, internal subject matter experts, partners and clients on a program that exceeded the lead generation goal by 272% with a 66% conversion rate.

The bottom line is, when evaluating influencers, look beyond their follower count. Their industry reputation, group affiliations, and level of engagement are all indicators influence, too. And don’t forget to include your customers, prospects, and employees in your potential influencer pool.

[bctt tweet="When evaluating influencers, look beyond their follower count. Their industry reputation, group affiliations, & level of engagement are all indicators influence, too. - @NiteWrites #RedefiningInfluencerMarketing" username="toprank"]

#2 – Redefining Compensation

The rising cost of influencer marketing is another factor that has led to the trough of disillusionment. The majority of influencer marketing, especially in B2C, has been exclusively transactional. Big brands swept up top-tier influencers, the payments kept getting bigger for smaller results, and eventually the bubble had to burst.

To reach the plateau of productivity, that compensation model must change. At TopRank Marketing, we focus on building relationships with influencers and invite them to co-create with us. While there are instances in which financial compensation is part of the partnership, most often the compensation is the same both for our client and the influencer:

  • A cool, valuable asset to share
  • Cross-promotion to each other’s audiences
  • Boost to thought leadership
  • Access to a community of thought leaders

The relationship model is far more sustainable than a transactional-only approach. Again, if there is an influencer who prefers a transaction, and is of high value to the client, we’re not opposed to financial compensation. But these cases should be the exception, not the norm.

#3 – Redefining Measurement

Proving ROI is a crucial part of making your influencer marketing more sophisticated. Without the ability to show what your influencers have accomplished for the brand, it’s hard to sell management on continued investment.

It all starts with measurable goals and KPIs that hold your influencer marketing to the same standards as every other tactic you use. Tracking performance against those goals is the next step. We all have access to the tools and tech for this kind of measurement. We just need to use them more effectively to show how influencers are effective throughout the entire buyer’s journey.

Right now, marketers tend to focus on the top of funnel metrics, because they’re easy to measure: Social reach, influencer participation, engagements, likes, comments.

You need to get more granular than just those raw engagement numbers. You need to get from engagement to action. When you’re ready to amplify, give each influencer a custom URL to share. Then you can measure which influencers are actually inspiring people to leave social media and check out the asset you’ve created. From there, you can measure how those clicks convert to a lead capture, and track the lead through your pipeline.

[bctt tweet="We all have access to the tools & tech for better measurement of #influencermarketing #ROI. We just need to use them more effectively. - @NiteWrites #RedefiningInfluencerMarketing" username="toprank"]

Redefining Influencer Marketing

It’s time for influencer marketing to graduate from the Hype Cycle and become a trusted part of your integrated marketing strategy. To get to the plateau of productivity, we must discard what doesn’t work, keep what does, and refine our approach for continued improvement.

It starts with reconsidering just what influence means and who has it. Once you find your true influencers, it’s about developing relationships and building communities, rather than ever-more-expensive transactions. Finally, it requires making your measurement as sophisticated as it is for the rest of your marketing tactics.

We have found that influencer marketing beyond the Hype Cycle is an indispensable part of our marketing mix. The proof is in the pie: Read how our Easy-As-Pie Guide to Content Planning drove a 500% increase in leads for client DivvyHQ.

*Disclosure: SAP and LinkedIn are TopRank Marketing clients.

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Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®

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Having Trouble Reaching Your Audience? It’s Time to Get Radically Relevant

So, you may remember not that long ago — as in, last month — I was very keen on chatbots. I got a lot of inspiration from Andrew Warner over at Mixergy, who had helped me see some things that I hadn’t understood at all about the format. Fast forward a few weeks … and
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It’s ‘Light the Fire’ Week on Copyblogger

We all have those times when we’re sort of coasting … gently floating along, letting things happen the way they will. But that time is not today.

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Writers: It’s Time to Get Paid What You’re Worth

This week is for our professional writers — whether you’re a freelancer or you work for a bigger organization. We’re tired of you missing out on the great gigs and the plum jobs, while you watch people zoom past you who can hardly type The Cat on the Mat. Poverty is overrated. Let’s get you
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What’s Actually Stunting Your Productivity (It’s Not Multitasking)

Lately, a common theme in productivity advice is bashing multitasking. “You suck at multitasking!” shrieks one headline. “Multitasking: the most dangerous productivity killer” hisses another. And they aren’t wrong. Studies have shown that trying to tackle different tasks simultaneously greatly reduces our cognitive abilities. But what if I told you there’s another type of multitasking
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Where to Begin When It’s Time to Edit Your Content

As I’ve said before, overcoming perfectionism is not an excuse to publish sloppy or uninspired writing. Content that works for your business is not only clear, accurate, and educational, it also gives insight into your values. And if it doesn’t contain aspects that make it memorable, it’s not going to work. Of course, memorable content
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It’s ‘We Love the Writer’ Week on Copyblogger

It's 'We Love the Writer' Week on Copyblogger

Actually every week is “We love the writer” week on Copyblogger. :) But this one is special, because we’re about to open up the Certified Content Marketer program to a new group of students.

This is a program that turns talented writers into well-paid talented writers. The key pieces are a content marketing strategy course (Brian Clark and I teach that one together), ongoing education to make sure you stay on top of best practices, and — for those who pass the application process — inclusion on our page of recommended writers and content strategists.

If you’re a writer and you’d like more clients, better rates, and a stronger competitive position, the Certification program just might be perfect for you. You can drop your email address here and we’ll get you all the details very shortly.

On Tuesday, Jerod Morris talked about why smart writers think about writing copy and not just text. (This applies even for those who don’t think of themselves as copywriters.)

On Wednesday, Stefanie Flaxman continued the conversation with the factors that helped her during her own six-year freelance career as she moved from earnest but broke to confident and successful (and still earnest).

And on Thursday, I revealed the two most important reasons why really good writers don’t get paid what they’re worth — and how to start addressing both of them.

Over on the Copyblogger FM podcast, I talked about a problem I see a lot in freelancers, but also in all kinds of smart people who want to start businesses: the fear of selling. I talk about what selling actually is (instead of the creepy myths) and how we can put together a sales process that doesn’t make us feel gross.

That’s it for this week — have a great weekend, and we’ll see you Monday. :)

— Sonia Simone

Chief Content Officer, Rainmaker Digital


Catch up on this week’s content


learn how to write words that work and teach people what they need to know to do business with youYour Content Marketing Won’t Work Without This

by Jerod Morris


this skill enables your professional life as a well-paid writerThe Career-Expanding Discovery Many Profitable Writers Have Made

by Stefanie Flaxman


it’s a particularly good time to join our list of recommended writersWriters: Here’s Why You Aren’t Getting More Great Clients

by Sonia Simone


Getting Over the Fear of SellingGetting Over the Fear of Selling

by Sonia Simone


How Award-Winning Author & Educator K.M. Weiland Writes: Part OneHow Award-Winning Author & Educator K.M. Weiland Writes: Part One

by Kelton Reid


Emerging Online Marketing Trends for 2017Emerging Online Marketing Trends for 2017

by Sean Jackson & Jessica Frick


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It’s Freelancer Freedom Week on Copyblogger

cb-weekly-red

Did you know that freelancers make up about a third of the U.S. workforce? I didn’t either, until I listened to Brian’s Unemployable podcast episode from last week.

What I did know is that freelancers have always been a wonderful part of our audience on Copyblogger. This week, we have a lot of great content to support freelance success — whether you’re freelancing full-time or you have a “side hustle” in addition to a more traditional job.

On Monday, I let you know about a program that’s very dear to me — our Certification program for content marketers. This is a program for writers who want to learn more about content strategy … and get the chance to apply for our list of recommended writers. The post tells you more about how the program works, and how to get involved.

On Tuesday, Stefanie outlined three “TET” factors professional writers need to create a strong business for themselves. She’s set out a ton of specific advice and resources for you here, so go grab it.

And on Wednesday, I announced our content challenge prompts for May — one to make you more productive, and one to make you more creative. Anyone can benefit from these, but they’ll definitely be useful if you’re creating your own professional path. I’ll be very curious to see what you do with these this month!

On The Digital Entrepreneur, Sean Jackson and Jessica Frick talked with Jess Ostroff about best practices when it’s time to bring a contractor or employee into your business.

Stay free, and we’ll catch you next week!

— Sonia Simone

Chief Content Officer, Rainmaker Digital


Catch up on this week’s content


apply to join Copyblogger’s list of recommended writersWriters: An Opportunity to Get Copyblogger Certified

by Sonia Simone


knowing the business of writing and content marketing gives you an advantage over other (directionless) writersHow to Run a Sustainable Writing Business (Where the Backbone of Success Is Simply … You)

by Stefanie Flaxman


2017 Content Excellence Challenge: The May Prompts2017 Content Excellence Challenge: The May Prompts

by Sonia Simone


How to Hire the Right Contractor or Employee for Your Online BusinessHow to Hire the Right Contractor or Employee for Your Online Business

by Sean Jackson & Jessica Frick


Professional Writers: Find Out How to Get Certified by CopybloggerProfessional Writers: Find Out How to Get Certified by Copyblogger

by Sonia Simone


How Senior BuzzFeed Writer and Author of ‘Startup’ Doree Shafrir Writes: Part OneHow Senior BuzzFeed Writer and Author of ‘Startup’ Doree Shafrir Writes: Part One

by Kelton Reid


3 Powerful Reasons to Produce More Evergreen Episodes3 Powerful Reasons to Produce More Evergreen Episodes

by Jerod Morris & Jon Nastor


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