Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from March 28, 2017
Instapage

SMX West session: Harnessing the power of online reviews

Closing out the excellent first time slot in the Local track at SMX West this year was Thomas Ballantyne’s session about online reviews. Far too many business owners either ignore or don’t care about reviews, so Ballantyne — the director of marketing at Bulwark Pest Control — built his presentation as a tool to help marketers get buy-in from their clients.Reviews are vital for successBallantyne began by citing a recent BrightLocal survey that showed that 92 percent of consumers read online reviews to determine the quality of local businesses. Whether a business owner wants to pay attention to reviews or not, potential customers are seeking out and reading reviews of the business.Even more important — 51 percent of people trust user-generated content over info on a company website or in news articles. Ballantyne explained that people trust reviews written by other people much more than anything written on your website, which is why it’s so important for business owners to focus on thei…

Top 10 insights on local marketing at LSA17

At the Local Search Association annual conference a few weeks ago, search and marketing experts in the local space provided insights into trends and challenges the advertising, marketing and search industry faces today.Here are 10 of the top takeaways shared at LSA17.1. Location drives almost all consumer engagement, even for national brandsAccording to Rob Blatt at Momentfeed, 85 to 95 percent of consumer engagement for brands happens through location assets such as local listings and local pages. That would explain why 50 percent of brands are using location data to target customers.A strong shift in marketing budgets toward location-based marketing is naturally following that trend. Data from the Location Based Marketing Association (LBMA) found that 25 percent of leading brands’ marketing budgets are spent on location-based marketing, and that number is projected to rise. Companies in the US increased use of location-based marketing by 5 percent from 2016 to 2017, while those in C…

Preparing for local reach in a ‘post-rank’ world: Get your data in line

Just last October at the Street Fight Summit, many marketers ranked voice search as the most “over-hyped” marketing tactic of the year. I think this is because many of them aren’t seeing the full scope of the technology. We’re putting on our consumer brains and thinking about the current awkwardness of speaking to Siri in public, not of a future inside self-driving cars or those moments when we just don’t want to get up from the couch.Currently, most voice searches happen on mobile phones. But within the next few years, it seems likely that devices with this capacity will increase in prevalence — and technological capability — in private spaces, where voicing out-loud intent won’t feel so silly.What might voice search mean for local?Most who do believe in a voice-dominated future are in a love/hate relationship with the idea. Some predict we’ll lose all local organic space to ads. Others foresee a future in which anything less than the No. 1 rank is worthless. I see both conclusions a…

Pay-per-visit mobile ad model uses AI to predict store visitation

UK-based location-data platform Blis is introducing a predictive ad model that will charge advertisers exclusively on a pay-per-visit basis. What that means is that advertisers will pay only for customers (or potential customers) that visit their business locations.It’s called “Blis Futures” and uses AI and audience modeling based on historical visitation patterns. A week ago, New York-based xAd introduced something similar, offering a cost-per-visit model that only charges brands and enterprises if customers walk through the door.Beverage brand Stella Artois is the first company to run a campaign with Blis Futures, to generate foot traffic for local pubs. Blis VP Gil Larsen said the company was pleased with the test run so far. Larsen also provided email responses to some questions I asked about the product and its capabilities.What was the genesis of this product? Why did you develop it?At Blis, connecting the gap between what consumers do online and in the real world is a crucial p…

Facebook brings more Snapchat functionality into its mobile app

What’s better, Snapchat or Facebook? With today’s announcement about Facebook Stories and new camera effects, we’re not sure if there’s a difference between the two.Effects galoreThis week, iOS and Android Facebook users will be able to tap on the camera icon on the Facebook app to try the new in-app camera. In an Instagram/Snapchat/Google Hangouts-effects-like experience, the new Facebook camera features effects such as masks, frames and interactive filters that can be applied directly to the multimedia. They’ll also be leveraging effects from visual artists. Not to leave the brands behind, Facebook will also be partnering with brands to create special masks for upcoming movies (“Alien: Covenant,” “Despicable Me 3,” “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” “Power Rangers,” “Smurfs: The Lost Village” and “Wonder Woman”).Facebook isn’t saying if these movie masks are part of a paid relationship, nor are they saying anything about ads or monetization in Facebook Stories just yet, but we suspec…

IBM’s Watson helps turbocharge Rocket Fuel with more brainpower

IBM’s logo for Watson The predictive marketing platform Rocket Fuel began in 2008 as a demand-side ad-buying platform, with artificial intelligence (AI) helping to steer ad placements from the start.It now also employs its AI to help inform marketing decisions made through other channels, such as selecting the most effective content for website visitors or choosing the best email message for a certain segment of email recipients.But the Redwood City, California-based company decided it needed a boost to its onboard intelligence, and it recently announced the alpha phase of a new integration with IBM’s Watson Discovery service.Called Brand Moments, this integration utilizes Watson to help decision-making for ad buying and placement, including display, video and native ads on sites, apps, Facebook, Twitter and other inventory.Watson identifies keywords and sentiment in surrounding content where ads might be placed, and an advertiser manually determines whether that page should be blackli…

Twitter to bring pre-roll ads to Periscope videos

Twitter is chasing the money, and Periscope is their next target. Per an announcement today, Twitter will soon allow publishers and creators to monetize their Periscope content with support of pre-roll ads within video.With pre-roll ads, viewers will receive the same user experience that is seen within Twitter videos, just now extended to Periscope. This enables brands to engage with viewers with their marketing message before the actual video is viewed. Just scroll through the Periscope feed, and all videos (live and replay videos) will start with an ad.This is a win-win-win for Twitter, broadcaster/video creators and brands. Twitter makes a cut of the profits, broadcasters earn as well, and marketers now have a new source of advertising to reach potentially new markets. For brands, the deal is sweetened by the fact that ads can be displayed on premium publishers and content creators. But many consumers won’t see it as a win. A study last year revealed that pre-roll video ads are a b…

How URL hijackers are disrupting banks’ PPC campaigns

I usually write about search marketing, analytics and conversion optimization, but I felt it was important to share a discovery I made recently.I noticed a major phishing scam hijacking the paid search ads of financial and banking companies on brand keywords. The activity was discovered by an alert I received from BrandVudu, a third-party risk compliance and brand protection tool.The alert uncovered paid search ads that look like official bank or credit card brand ads, but when a consumer clicks the ad, the landing page is a phishing website.In this example the tactic follows this pattern:1. An ad is triggered on brand or brand-plus searches for popular bank and credit card keywords (e.g., brand + “ login” or “low APR credit card offers”)2. The ad contains a display URL for the financial institution, and therefore appears genuine and official.3. Consumers who click on the ad are misdirected to a phishing site which attempts to get the user to call a phone number. After this the follow…

Make me an offer: Rating the effectiveness of common email offers

Offers and promotions are the bread and butter of email marketing. Give subscribers a reason — any reason — to act, and it’s all but inevitable that your campaign will become an occasion for brand glory and killer business outcomes, right?We all know it’s not that simple. At Yes Lifecycle Marketing, my employer, our latest research shows that all email offers aren’t created equal — and in some cases, the most appealing emails are the ones with no offers at all.Consumers are getting burned out on subject line offersIn 2016, 30 percent of all marketing emails and nearly half (44 percent) of all retail marketing emails featured subject lines containing an offer, according to the recent study we conducted, “What’s the Big Deal: A Look Inside 6 Different Types of Email Offers” (registration required).The popularity of offers and promotions in subject lines demonstrates the competitiveness of today’s email marketing landscape. To achieve opens and clicks, marketers feel pressure to outdo co…

7 powerful SEO & management tools to make your social media efforts more effective

Social media marketing has been around for a while, and it’s become a proven tool for increasing traffic and generating new leads. Incorporating social media such as Facebook and Twitter into one’s business development strategy is an absolute must for any business these days. Ninety-two percent of marketers declared that social media was very important for their business, and 77 percent of them stated that their social media efforts increased traffic to their sites, according to Social Media Examiner research.Those are not new facts. What’s new, though, are the tools you can use to enhance your social media efforts — like SEO and management tools. Let’s review seven tools that can improve your social media management and increase revenue.1. BuzzSumoBuzzSumo allows you find the most popular content and share relevant content filtering by categories: videos, interviews, guest posts, giveaways and so on. It’s also a good way to discover hot topics and know how many social shares each pos…

Header bidding: What marketers need to know

In previous articles, we navigated the digital display advertising “stack,” starting with direct orders, programmatic direct, private marketplaces and the open RTB (real-time bidding) auction.Since writing that series, a new ad technology known as “header bidding” has grown in adoption by publishers. Because of its transformative impact to the programmatic advertising ecosystem, it’s also become a popular topic of discussion within the industry.Yet when I ask industry associates how much they know about it, most reply “very little.”What is header bidding, and how does it work?If the concept of header bidding is new to you, I suggest starting with this beginner’s guide to header bidding. In this article, however, we will dive deeper into what header bidding means for marketers and how to take advantage of it.To explain header bidding in a nutshell, let’s borrow the following definition from that guide:Header bidding is a new, unified auction conducted by publishers outside of their pri…

Inside chatbots’ year of growing pains: ‘We’re at an inflection point’

A year ago, chatbots reemerged atop a mountain of hype that messaging marked tech’s latest paradigm shift, after messaging apps Facebook’s Messenger and Kik officially opened up to chatbots. A year later, the trend has slid down the mountain into its own uncanny valley. However, that slide may provide the momentum that chatbot makers, from brands to media companies to startups, need to make it back up the next mountain and stay there.Chatbots have been on a downward slide for several reasons that seem to have snowballed together, according to executives at brands, agencies and technology companies. Messaging apps like Facebook’s Messenger have not done enough to promote chatbots, so not enough people have been using chatbots, so chatbot makers don’t have enough feedback to improve their conversational capabilities.Roughly 78 percent of adults in the US have not even heard of chatbots, according to an online survey that Publicis Groupe’s Digitas LBi hired Harris Poll to conduct in Nove…

Social Media Tips: How to Use Social Media to Build Personal Brand

Use Social Media Tips to Build Personal BrandHow to Use Social Media to Build Personal BrandBrands put great efforts to boost online visibility and profits. They want to provide a user-friendly interface and want a positive user experience so that they could get more clicks and more likes. But when a brand is a person instead of a company it needs a different approach to grow your brand through social media. As we know that mostly the customers trust the people they know when making a purchase rather than purchasing from an unknown brand, building personal connections and developing trust and authority among your customers are the most effective way to grow your brand. Below social media tips help you build your personal brand with your audience.  Read More: How to Track Your Social Media Efforts Here are the social media tips which can help you make connections with your audience. Give As Much As You CanYou should know that if you want anyone to remember you, they must have a reason. To …