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Showing posts from September 14, 2017
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When Amazon comes for your company, don’t lose focus on what matters: Your customer

On day one of the recently completed Whole Foods acquisition, Amazon slashed prices on dozens of staple goods, sending competitive grocery stock prices into a freefall. Many investors didn’t have the stomach to go toe-to-toe with the e-commerce giant, whose influence was mentioned in one-fifth of all S&P 500 earnings calls last quarter.It would seem no industry is safe from Amazon’s gargantuan appetite. For business leaders, it’s not a matter of if Amazon will come after your market, but when.Hedging which areas to invest in and build a competitive advantage against a powerful market entrant like Amazon is daunting. Amazon will always beat smaller companies in both price and scale, even if that means hemorrhaging money to do so.So, how can you safeguard against an apparently unstoppable force? Through better marketing.Sure, leave it to a career marketer to tell you marketing is the only thing that can save a company from annihilation — I assure you the irony is not lost. But let m…

7 killer ad tips for YouTube & video

YouTube is incredibly popular; Alexa consistently ranks it as the second most trafficked site globally. Additionally, its content shows up frequently in Google (which happens to be the top site).Most people think of YouTube as a great SEO opportunity for visibility or a place to host videos they plan on embedding on their websites. But YouTube video advertising has evolved dramatically over the last several years, opening up new opportunities for marketers.Unlike paid search, which is often managed heavily against last-click attribution, most forms of YouTube advertising are used to either build or reinforce brand awareness. Yes, YouTube ads can contain a call to action (a bit like late-night infomercials), but more often than not, the consumption of video advertising by your target audience is more “upper-funnel.”(By the way, many marketing touch points you already love are more upper-funnel than they get credit for. For example, even PPC search qualifies as an upper-funnel touch poi…

What’s better than a marketing tech stack? Your marketing org stack

We’ve been running running The Stackies at chiefmartec.com for three years now, inviting marketers to send in a single slide that visually illustrates their marketing tech stack.It’s evolved into an awards program and a drive for charity (the last Stackies program raised $7,800 for Girls Who Code), with a little friendly competition and trophies at the end.But its main purpose is to encourage our community here to share ideas and experience with each other. From 2015, 2016 and 2017, we’ve shared a collection of over 100 real-world marketing stacks — including ones from major companies such as Cisco and Microsoft.This wide collection of sample marketing stacks has been incredibly valuable in helping us understand how good “best-of-breed” marketing technology capabilities are built and managed.People & process — The more important points of the triangleBut while understanding how to build and manage a solid marketing technology stack is an important part of marketing in the modern a…

Tobii Pro employs its eye-trackers to find out what attracts attention in a car showroom

When potential buyers go into a car showroom, car brands have 20-second windows of attention to make the sale.That’s one of the takeaways from an eye-tracking studyout this week — that was conducted by eye-tracking researcher Tobii Pro, Toyota Canada and conference provider Dx3 Canada. The study took place at a mock car showroom created at the Dx3 marketing conference this past March in Toronto, which included a Corolla, a RAV4, pretend salespeople and promotional displays.Tobii Pro Insight Senior Research Director Mike Bartels told me this is “the first marketing showroom data that Tobii has made publicly available,” although his company has conducted other confidential showroom studies.[Read the full article on MarTech Today.]

via Marketing Land

With an eye toward GDPR, The Media Trust sets up ‘first vendor network’ to fix the Net

When it starts in May, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requires consent for use of personal data from visitors to websites and apps. For this function, Janrain, Evidon and others are coming out with user-facing solutions.But brands also need to be concerned about what happens behind the scenes, in their site/app code — and especially how well third-party vendors comply.This week, compliance and anti-malware monitoring service The Media Trust is out with a new service that sets up what it says is the first network of third-party vendors to comply with GDPR and other policies and good practices.Called the Digital Vendor Risk Management (DVRM) service, this cloud-based service rides on top of the McLean, Virginia-based firm’s existing Media Scanner service, which tracks 30 million sources of data and millions of sites and apps as it looks for malware and for compliance with regulations, including COPPA for child safety and HIPAA for medical info privacy.[Read the full artic…

10 tips to make your Magento online store more secure

An estimated 240,000 ecommerce stores use Magento for their online operations, which accounts for nearly 30% of the ecommerce platform market.Unfortunately, this not only makes clear that Magento is a worthwhile program, it makes clear something else: It’s a focus area for cyber criminals across the globe. Add to this the fact that it’s an ecommerce platform, and it’s clear how critical security for any Magento e-store would be.Magento keeps on releasing security patches to keep client websites secure; however, the responsibility of doing everything possible to secure your Magento store also rests with you, the customer.There are several customizations, security settings, and additional best practices that you need to be aware of in order to make your Magento based e-store secure. This piece will run through 10 tips that can help you make your ecommerce store more secure than before.From very technical suggestions to secure your admin access, to general security practices that will ke…

Marketing Day: Facebook tests Bonfire video app, a personalization road map & more

Here’s our recap of what happened in online marketing today, as reported on Marketing Land and other places across the web.From Marketing Land:Fake news! How to recognize bad advice in link building and SEO
Sep 13, 2017 by Julie Joyce
Overloaded with content? Julie Joyce explains why it’s essential for SEOs and link builders to learn how to wade through a sea of potential misinformation.How retailers can put Amazon to work for them
Sep 13, 2017 by Adam Dorfman
Many brick-and-mortar businesses have come to view Amazon as a threat to their bottom line, but columnist Adam Dorfman illustrates how smart business owners are using Amazon to their advantage.Facebook tests group video chat app called Bonfire
Sep 13, 2017 by Tim Peterson
Facebook’s Messenger added group video calling last year, begging the question of why the company needs another stab at the market.A marketing road map for personalization
Sep 13, 2017 by Nick Iyengar
Having the right tools in your martech stack is essential fo…

Fake news! How to recognize bad advice in link building and SEO

I like to joke that whenever Moz publishes an article about links, half my clients immediately email me about it. But that’s really not too far from the truth! People with big audiences have a lot of power.But people can make mistakes — even people with strong expertise in a subject — so you do need to be careful trusting information without backup sources. In my opinion, the best thing about Moz is that in the comments, people will call you out, ask questions and offer alternative points of view.People will also call you out on social media, but I’ve noticed that it doesn’t always happen with smaller sites that have smaller audiences. If an individual is writing on his or her own blog and just getting started, especially if that blog doesn’t allow comments, the writer can say lots of untrue things and no one will even notice — other than maybe your poor client.When the data isn’t what it should bePeople do make proclamations based on faulty data. I recently was involved with a study …

How retailers can put Amazon to work for them

Attention retailers: Amazon doesn’t have to be Public Enemy Number One.Yes, Amazon has a well-deserved reputation for disrupting (and obliterating) brick-and-mortar retailing. But offline retailers can learn to get along with Amazon and even generate more sales working with them. Just ask Aaron Jarvis, who operates Near Mint Games.For the past few years, Near Mint Games has successfully sold popular card games such as “Magic: The Gathering,” “Yu-Gi-Oh” and “Pokémon” out of a small, nondescript storefront on Chicago’s North Side. (Disclosure: Not a client. All money in our relationship flows from my son and I to them so we can get more Pokémon cards.)Near Mint Games is the kind of place where gaming enthusiasts not only shop but also hang out and play against each other in events organized by Jarvis. His store is a fixture in the Chicago TCG (trading card game) community, but his offline presence is only half the reason for his success. He earns nearly half his income through a storefr…

Facebook tests group video chat app called Bonfire

Facebook is making another foray into the group video chat space.Facebook has rolled out a standalone mobile app in Denmark called Bonfire that enables people to host video calls with multiple people. The Next Web first reported the news on Wednesday, which a Messenger spokesperson later confirmed.“At Facebook Inc. we continue to build and test new products and services. We already have many great experiences for people to video chat in groups, or as individuals, across the family of apps, including Messenger. We are interested in how everyone uses technology and how we can build great experiences for them. We’re running a very small test in Denmark of an app we call Bonfire. We have nothing further to share at this time,” said the Messenger spokesperson in an emailed statement.While limited to Denmark for now, Bonfire may portend a broader attempt by Facebook to corner the fledgling group video chat market. Of course, there are already platforms for group video chats. Google’s Hangou…

A marketing road map for personalization

Personalization is all the rage in digital marketing these days, and with good reason. As an industry, we’ve reached a point where the tools necessary to launch personalization campaigns are more accessible — and affordable — than ever.But while technical challenges were always the most obvious roadblocks for organizations trying to get started with personalization, the fact that those problems are more easily surmounted now doesn’t mean it’s always easy to launch personalization efforts — and more importantly, to see compelling results from those endeavors.Indeed, as with most important initiatives in digital marketing, the technical aspects, while important, are in some ways only the tip of the iceberg. In addition to having the right technology in your organization’s “stack,” successful personalization initiatives include:a clear view of what personalization is meant to achieve: what are you optimizing against?a rigorous, data-driven approach to audience segmentation.ongoing measur…

Maybe the marketing funnel is dead, too — and here’s what can replace it

In my last column, I explained why you should probably stop thinking about marketing in terms of campaigns. It used to be that you created marketing collateral and could never touch it again — but digital marketing lets us constantly iterate and improve what’s out there. And if we can iterate, we should, since improving what’s working is much more efficient than constantly starting from scratch.With digital marketing, we can be more iterative and flexible in our marketing. But there’s a flip side to this — our prospects and customers can also be more flexible in the way that they learn about what we offer and why they should be interested.The marketing funnel isn’t a static journey anymore, if it ever was. We need to pay more attention to exactly what our prospects are doing, when and why.The ‘marketing funnel’ often… isn’tWe’re all familiar with the concept of the “marketing funnel.” Originally developed in 1898, it describes a “journey from the moment a brand or product attracted co…

The rise of personal assistants

Market disruptions are times of great stress, but they also provide great opportunity. They define new winners and losers in the marketplace. And the next major disruption is just around the corner — it’s the coming era of the personal assistants, and there are many market forces that are driving this shift.The first of these market forces is the explosion of the Internet of Things: Internet-connected devices will be something other than a PC, tablet or a smartphone. Gartner predicts that 8.4 billion connected devices will be in use in 2017 (up 31 percent from last year) and that this number will reach 20.4 billion by 2020.What will those other devices be? Here are some of them (though there are many, many others not on this list):RefrigeratorsAlarm systemsThermostatsWatchesCarsTVsSmart speakersThis will create a world where a connected device is always within immediate reach, and for the great majority of those devices, there will no search box and no browser. That leads us to our ne…

41% report doing majority of their holiday shopping online last year [Survey]

According to a recent Walker Sands poll, 41 percent of more than 1,600 consumers surveyed report buying all, or at least a majority of their holiday gifts online last year.Aiming to get a better understanding of this year’s online holiday shopping trends, the 2017 Future of Retail Holiday Report (registration required) includes survey results on everything from how often consumers shopped online to the devices they prefer to shop with and the motivators behind their online buying habits.Among the 41 percent who completed their 2016 holiday shopping online (defined as “high-frequency” online shoppers), 71 percent say that they shop online at least once a month. Forty-four percent of the high-frequency online shoppers report they are likely to make a purchase on a voice-controlled device in the coming year, and 66 percent said they have used Amazon Prime in the past year.The survey broke down the device usage preferences among the high-frequency online shoppers, with 78 percent preferri…