The Forgotten Audience Segment

forgottenaudienceAs marketers, we’re pretty good at defining audience groups within our target market, identifying their pain points and developing messaging that addresses those points. On a good day, we even come up with unique messaging for each audience segment. But there’s one segment that most marketers forget, ignore or consider to be “not our problem”—existing customers.Read full post...

7 steps to lead generation and nurturing in a long sales cycle

Know what drives your prospects.MarketingFunnel

As marketers, we need to help our sales teams with longer sales cycles face one of their biggest challenges: staying top-of-mind during a decision-making process that can drag on for months or years. At ab+c, we’ve come up with a process that uses strategy and technology to meet this challenge without breaking the bank.

Step 1: Work with your sales team to identify key drivers in the prospect’s decision-making process.

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I could care less

Garfield knows.

Garfield knows.

This has always been a pet peeve of mine. When someone utters this phrase, I think, “You should try harder.”

I could care less vs. I couldn’t care less

The point of the statement is that the speaker doesn’t care at all. But to say s/he could care less literally means that there is potential to care at least a little less than s/he does right now.Read full post...

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Why can’t I just hire an intern to run my social media campaign?

Think of social media as a piece of the brand engagement puzzle. To be effective, it needs to fit into a strategy aimed at the right audience.

Think of social media as a piece of the brand engagement puzzle. To be effective, it needs to fit into a strategy aimed at the right audience.

Well, you can — if you don’t mind it ending or taking on an entirely different tone when the next semester starts.

Social media has become the latest stepchild in the world of digital marketing campaigns. At least it has good company. When Quark and Pagemaker came out in the ’90s, everyone was an instant print designer. With the dot-com bubble, everyone’s nephew was a web developer. Digital cameras turned the world into professional photographers. Now, interns can manage social media campaigns. Why not? They spend their whole day on those sites anyway.

It’s easy to think of social communities as the realm of kids hanging out with their friends and boomers sharing cat videos. In reality, the social networks are one piece of what has become the omni-channel. Read full post...

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10 steps to creating effective landing pages

To create a better landing page, follow these 10 steps.

So, you have marketing tactics driving people to your website. Great! The next question most marketers ask is, “How can I make the site work harder for me?”

1. Identify business goals.

Before you can figure out how to make a landing page work harder, ask yourself, “What was the business need behind the campaign?” Lead generation, patient education, engagement? Answering this will help define a call-to-action (CTA) to engage visitors on the landing page. It will also help you find effective ways to measure how well everything is working.Read full post...

Will online marketing and social media kill the jumbotron?

Can mobile media compete with the jumbotron.

Can mobile media compete with the jumbotron?

These days, it seems like everyone is asking whether something is about to kill something else: “Will html5 kill flash?” “Will the iPad kill Kindle?”

So, with tongue firmly in cheek, I thought, “I gotta get in on this killing spree.”

In my daily romp through my normal news sites, I stumbled upon an article about a guy named Fred Ehrhart who is taking advantage of online marketing’s incredible targeting capabilities to ask a question usually reserved for jumbotrons, billboards and banners being towed behind airplanes: “Will you marry me?” The ads are all long gone, but they directed his potential bride and anyone else who clicked to this landing page.Read full post...

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Social Media Marketing (Part 2)

Domino's - an example of social media success

Domino's - an example of social media success

If you missed the first part, check it out here.

Now for the good: a coworker in our PR department had an experience in which FedEx missed a next-day delivery. She decided to voice her frustration by tweeting, “FedEx really expletive deleted on me today.” Within 30 minutes, she got a retweet from FedexAl asking if he could help. This small effort from FedEx customer service immediately turned her from disgruntled to impressed.

An even better example would be Domino’s Pizza.Read full post...

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Social Media Marketing (Part 1)

An example of social media failure.

Sears - an example of social media failure.

Everyone seems to be buzzing about Social Networks and how to take advantage of them for marketing purposes. It is a great opportunity for companies to join a conversation that’s already taking place rather than trying to start a new one. As with any conversation, you have to listen. Imagine walking into a crowded party and just starting to talk about things that interest you without bothering to figure out the current topic of the conversation. How would people react?

Here is my step-by-step guide to getting into the social networking fray.

1. Plan: Before getting involved, ask yourself, “What are my business goals and how do I plan on measuring them?” Only then can you develop a plan to make social media a part of that success.
2. Listen: Begin monitoring the current conversations to find out if people are talking about you and what they’re saying.
3. Evaluate: Is there a prevailing positive or negative tone to the existing conversations?
4. Engage: Social networks can be a great opportunity for customer service, as you’ll see in the examples below.
5. Promote: The final—I repeat, final—step of playing in the social network sandbox is promotion of your goods or services. Once you are a part of the conversation, then you can start changing its direction.Read full post...