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Darcy Grabenstein Sep 29

Develop a Content Game Plan


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Content (and let’s not forget context) is king, so they say, which means you need a game plan to keep pace with your opponent, er, competition. Here are a few excerpts from our content playbook, to help ensure that you’ll be on the offensive, not the defensive, throughout the year.

Game plan

Play No. 1: Be relevant

Think about it. If a football coach were to give a locker room speech encouraging his players to slam-dunk and hit three-pointers, would they quickly zone out? Of course they would.

The same can be applied to content. You’ve not only got to be relevant, you need to provide the reader with some valid take-aways.

Whatever you do, avoid a fumble here. If you regularly post content that’s not remotely related to your line of business — or your followers’ interests — your content will eventually be ignored. Or worse, you’ll cause a turnover: Your followers will start following your competitors instead.

Play No. 2: Be timely

Timing is everything in football. It’s also important in terms of content and content marketing. You’ve got to keep on top of what’s trending in the news and in social media. That way, you can capitalize on trending topics by tying in your content in some way. The hashtag is your new best friend.

This concept, known in some circles as newsjacking, is not new. Public relations professionals have been doing this for decades because, in short, it works.

Miss the snap, however, and the play is over.

Play No. 3: Be consistent (but not predictable)

You’ve got to get in the game. By consistency, I mean you need to post content on a regular basis. If you post only sporadically, your followers will assume there’s nothing new on your social media sites and you’ll disappear from their radar screens.

But you don’t want everyone reading your passes, either. You DO want them reading your content. If you simply copy/paste your content from one social media site to another, you’ll lose in the long run. Define a strategy for each social media outlet (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.), then develop content that builds upon that strategy.

Play No. 4: Be sure to pass

That is, hand off quality content to your colleagues via social media. In the world of social media, sharing is caring.

You want others to share your content on various social media networks, so it behooves you to return the favor. However, you’re not doing yourself (or the originator of the content) any favors if you’re sharing just for the sake of sharing. Share relevant content (see No. 1 above), and then make it value added by including your own insight.

Of course, you can always play Monday morning quarterback but by then most of the social media buzz probably will have subsided and you’ll miss out on the bulk of the action.

Here’s to a winning season!

Darcy Grabenstein is senior copywriter at Annodyne.

Photo courtesy of: Jim Larrison


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Diana Altobelli Aug 28

4 Ways to Get the Most out of Your Facebook Ad Campaigns


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Have you been thinking about marketing on Facebook? Or have you used Facebook ads but are not getting the results desired? Whatever the case, you have an opportunity to get a better return on investment by incorporating these four tactics into your social media campaigns.

Before I begin, I will jump on my soapbox and for a moment remember the days of Facebook being ad free and CEO Mark Zuckerberg saying it will remain that way. Well, like all those with a great idea (no matter if it starts out free), Zuckerberg wanted to get paid for his brilliant idea. I can’t say I blame him. However, let’s think for a second how this transitioned our lives forever once advertising began on social media. For example, I have a particular design taste. The shabby-chic, French cottage, one-of-a-kind décor that you can’t seem to find at your Pier 1 Imports or Wayfair (and if you did it’s way above what I’m willing to pay).

Through Facebook’s algorithms, however, I have been able to find more local small business owners and boutique shops, thanks to Facebook advertisements, remarketing and suggested pages to “like.” This has given me the opportunity to find entrepreneurs who make the handcrafted pieces that I am seeking. Normally, I am not one to congratulate the social media giant because I like to find things on my own, but Facebook has helped me greatly these past few months.

Anyway, back to the meat and potatoes of what this blog post is all about.

1. Split Test Your Facebook Ads

Whether you use Google AdWords or Bing, split testing is necessary to see what works. We all know this is a best practice, but the time and discipline required to set this up and then analyze the data after tests can become dreary. Stick to it, though, because the work you put into your Facebook campaign will yield a return on your investment. Simply change a variance in your ads and measure to see which one gets the best results. This could be different keywords, images, text, calls to action or even types of ads. You have multiple options on Facebook: right-hand side ads, newsfeed ads and carousel/multiple image ads. Once you test this and refine your ads, you’ll lower your cost per click (CPC), resulting in less-expensive conversions.

The ads are not the only thing you should vary. Don’t forget to test different target audiences and demographics. You might realize the interests and behaviors you are targeting are not associated with the type of user who will convert on social media. You might want to start with the little things first: keywords, images and text. Start them on the same day with similar conditions to get the best possible results. Then lead to demographics.

2. Use Facebook Conversion Pixel

Now you may think installing the Facebook conversion tracking pixel is a waste of time but, believe me, it is not. Facebook wouldn’t offer it if it weren’t helpful. It does exactly what is says, tracks conversions on Facebook. This will allow you to determine how much you are paying and what you are getting in return for those dollars spent.

3. Keep Mobile and Desktop Ads Separate

You might be wondering why you shouldn’t just use every ad location available for your new Facebook ad set. Well, here’s why: By separating them, you will have more control and the ability to optimize your ads, bids and conversions by device. Calls to action and text also display differently on desktop versus mobile. By catering your ad copy toward the device will allow for great conversions and a better end-user experience.

4. Set Up a Remarketing Pixel

Remarketing seems to be all the rage right now. What is it? It’s when potential customers have visited your website but did not convert. After visitors leaving your site, it’s easy for them to forget about your business. This is where Facebook remarketing comes into play. You then have the ability to target them after they have visited your site., creepily following them online and serving ads to keep your company top of mind.

This is all just the tip of the iceberg. You also can maximize your ability to target on Facebook through income, behaviors, look-a-like audiences, test calls to action and more. Social media advertising can be highly profitable if done right. Facebook enjoys a significant amount of traffic, and it can be directed toward your website or landing pages if ads are set up correctly.

What do you think? Will you use some of these starter strategies to increase the effectiveness of your Facebook ad campaigns? Leave your comments below!

Diana Altobelli is a search marketing specialist at Annodyne.


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Darcy Grabenstein May 11

Mobile Is a Must for Travel Marketers


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As travel season soon kicks into high gear, destination marketers are scrambling to get their fair share of the tourism pie. No matter how you slice it, mobile is a key ingredient in the marketer’s mixing bowl of tactics.

According to the Skift report, State of Travel 2014, mobile technology plays a significant role in the travel industry. The report cited mobile apps as an emerging factor in travel e-commerce. U.S. mobile travel bookings were predicted to increase exponentially, from $ 2 billion in 2011 to $40 billion in 2015. In fact, travel apps are the fastest-growing app category:

Mobile trends

SOURCE: bluebridgeTourism

In the illustration below, travel-related businesses are jumping on the mobile bandwagon:

TravelMobilebuy-in

SOURCE: TripAdvisor/SkiftStats: Apr 26 2014

The Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI) acknowledges the increased use of mobile to book and plan trips. Search remains the number one planning source for personal travel. As early as 2012, a whopping 95 percent of leisure travelers started their destination planning with search.* Not surprising, then, that the DMAI recommends search engine marketing (SEM) and search engine optimization (SEO) as online tactics for reaching prospective travelers.

Social media also strongly influences people’s travel decisions, according to the DMAI. Up to 52 percent of users changed their original travel plans based on social media.**

The infographic below gives a snapshot of the online travel industry as of 2012:

online-travel-industry

SOURCE: Funsherpa. Airplane icon image via Shutterstock.

Video content also is playing an increasing role in online travel planning. The DMAI notes that 45 percent of leisure travelers, 72 percent of business travelers, and 74 percent of affluent travelers have been prompted to book travel as a result of online video.*

Photo sharing also has exploded onto the scene, with sites such as Facebook and Pinterest, and apps including Instagram.

So what’s a travel marketer to do? First, optimize for mobile. Next, optimize for search. Create compelling content that distinguishes your venue from the competition. Encourage social interaction with site — and destination — visitors. Then look forward to the peak of the ­­­2015 travel season with optimism.

Darcy Grabenstein is senior copywriter at Annodyne.

*Traveler’s Road to Decision. Google, July 2012
**Social Media’s Influence on the Travel Industry. 25 July 2012.


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Diana Altobelli Jan 22

The Struggles With Higher Ed Marketing and How To Overcome Them


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As if digital marketing weren’t already tough enough, the search engines don’t seem to be easing up any time soon. Not only that, but higher education keywords and phrases are getting to be quite expensive. Here at Annodyne, we service many higher education institutions. Using online marketing strategies such as search engine marketing, we have seen great success with our clients in filling the seats of MBA and EMBA programs.

education-marketing

With that being said, it can be even more difficult for institutions with small to medium-sized programs to gain online recognition and traffic. The price tag for higher ed to attract potential students via paid search continues to increase, costing anywhere from $50 and up per click.

As paid search becomes more expensive and with limited budgets, it is important to spend your marketing dollars wisely and in a space where you can compete. Let’s talk about content marketing, for example. If you ask me, the term is getting a bit irritating at this point but bear with me.

Institutions are challenged to come up with a great key message that will stand out among the rest, one that will resonate with potential MBA and EMBA students (or any student, for that matter). Only a fraction of colleges and universities are nationally ranked, or have the funds to pay for rights to use the badge signifying their ranking.

All the rest must determine what makes their program truly unique. Why not start with alumni and faculty? Learn what professors and teachers at the college are doing internally, then create stimulating ad copy that will resonate with students. Whether you create case studies, white papers or even infographics, you will engage the end user and capitalize on your marketing efforts by providing relevant information.

What would be even greater is if the potential student engaged with that content. Micghael Schrange from MIT sums up what engagement is really all about. “Engagement is smack at the intersection of commanding attention and taking action.”

social-network-gif

For example, views and traffic are great, BUT… that does nothing for your campaign if no one is interacting with your posts, photos or videos. Let’s think of it in reference to search engine optimization. You are getting tons of traffic to the website, but no one is filling out lead forms. You might want to check your bounce rate; is there enough content to keep the reader engaged for awhile? These are all questions you need to ask yourself when looking to keep the end user engaged.

The same goes for social media. You can post 2-3 times a day, but if no one is sharing, liking or commenting on your material you may want to think twice about what you are doing. Or if you are just starting out maybe you want to assign some team members as social media ambassadors to help increase the engagement with like users who may be interested. Do you see where I’m going with this?

Now since, search engine marketing maybe not be the greatest avenue to bring in leads for your Executive MBA programs, leveraging your social media pages might do the trick. Yes, it is becoming even more of a struggle to gain the reader’s attention, but having an active presence on a platform where a majority of users spend their time can create conversions.

As with Google AdWords, you still have the ability to target your audience on social media. With Facebook, you can target by interests, behaviors, location, age, gender and more. This not only allows for more effective targeting but can be much cheaper than the search giant.

The bottom line is developing an end goal, a marketing strategy so that you can properly measure, track and gauge how your social media or search engine marketing campaigns are doing. Once that is laid out, it can be much easier to determine which tactics and platforms to use when it comes to higher education marketing. Make sure they are aligned with the institution’s objectives as a whole!

Diana Altobelli is a search marketing coordinator at Annodyne. 

photo credit via AZ NetMarketing

The Social Network gif via The Other Hubby

Crewe Fox 


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Darcy Grabenstein Jan 20

Is Copywriting an Art or a Science?


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Lab with beakers

From character development to character counts, I’d argue that it’s both.

Well-written copy, like a fine portrait, creates a visual impression for the viewer. A skilled copywriter tells a story, weaving in details that paint a complete picture. Through careful placement of words, the writer can evoke emotion. In advertising/marketing, the writer spurs the audience to buy a product, to buy in to a concept or to want more details.

The art of copywriting is the same whether you’re writing for print or the web. However, writing digital content has become more of a science.

This is nothing new. Online writing is simply direct marketing via a different channel. The direct-response industry has it down to a science. There’s a proven formula, if you will, and it works. Every piece of a DM kit — from the envelope teaser to the letter and brochure to the response card — is written to certain specifications. Even the DM letter itself is dissected into the headline, the Johnson box, the body and the postscript.

Online copywriting takes copy-fitting concepts from the world of print to a whole new level, with not only word counts but character counts as well. Twitter, with its 140-character Tweet limit, is king of the character count. However, if you’re sticking to 140 characters, you’re selling yourself short (or is that long?). Tweets should be 100-120 characters, to allow for retweeting.

If Twitter is king, email marketing is probably the queen. Email subject line length is a topic that has been hotly debated throughout the industry. I think the jury’s still out on this. According to an article on the DMA Email Marketing Council Blog, subject line lengths can be categorized as short: <25 characters, medium: 25-50 characters and long: >50 characters. For mobile, subject lines should be 30 characters or less.

As with any marketing channel, you’ve got to test so you can determine what works best for your audiences. Since we’re talking subject lines, the open rate is the metric you should be looking at. When conducting your testing, try to keep all the other aspects (day/time sent, tone, segmentation, etc.) constant so as not to skew your results.

SEO is another area that puts the science into copywriting. Luckily for us copywriters, keyword density is an outdated SEO technique. Keywords as a whole are being downplayed these days. That doesn’t mean, however, that we can ignore keywords and keyword phrases altogether. It does mean that we can’t resort to keyword stuffing. It’s been said before and I’ll say it again: You must write for people, not the search engines. Write your content first, then go back and tweak it by inserting keywords where they would naturally occur.

Some SEO experts recommend a minimum of 300 words on web pages for Google indexing and ranking. Truth is, Google has no minimum word count. Google wants relevant, quality content. Period. You can write your little heart out, but if the content is not up to snuff, Google will snub you.

When it comes to page title tags and page descriptions, however, size matters. In Google search results, most title tags will be cut off around 42 to 68 characters. I know, that’s a huge range. According to The Moz Blog, 55 characters is a safe bet, but it pays to test. The same goes for page descriptions.

Social media also has hopped on the character count bandwagon. For Facebook ads, the headline is limited to 25 characters and the body to 90 characters. For posts, a study by Jeff Bullas revealed that brand posts of 40 characters had the highest levels of engagement.

What about Google+? A study by Copyblogger shows that 60 characters is the suggested max for headlines. Google+ posts average 156 characters, according to Qunitly Research.

The rule of thumb for blog posts is that they should be a minimum of 1500-1600 words. That’s if your goal is to boost search engine traffic. Personally, I don’t have the time or patience to read posts that long. I’d rather that someone actually read my post, and get something out of it, than to start reading it and become disengaged. And, according to a Kissmetrics post, since headlines usually are scanned by readers they are most effective when they’re six words or less. (Phew! And, if you’re wondering, I already had written the headline for this post before I got to this part of my research.)

Let’s not forget the role of data in all of this. Findings based on data analysis must be incorporated into content to optimize conversions. While the data collection and analysis is the scientific part, it definitely impacts the content.

In short, copy cannot be written in a silo. It must take into account the audience, analytics, the goal, the channel and other factors. A writer cannot simply wax poetic and expect results.

I rest my case. Copywriting is both an art and a science.

Darcy Grabenstein is senior copywriter at Annodyne.

photo credit: cwangdom via photopin cc


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Darcy Grabenstein Jan 6

Let’s Hear It for the Power of Social Media!


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Allow me to toot my own horn here. I was named the winner of the 2014 Ugly Holiday Sweater Contest at Annodyne. The fact that I did or did not own the ugliest holiday sweater is somewhat irrelevant. What’s key is how I ended up being the winner, thanks to social media.

We announced the contest via our e-newsletter to our own list, on our Facebook page, LinkedIn page and in our Twitter feed on Dec. 16. I followed suit (no pun intended) the same day, sharing the link on my own Facebook and Twitter pages, imploring my friends and followers to “Pick me! Pick me!”

Voting for the Ugliest Sweater was open through Dec. 31, so on Dec. 29 (after the holiday frenzy) I re-posted the link on Facebook and Twitter.

A funny thing happened on Twitter. Even though I wasn’t sharing any news or insights, I gained new followers after my tweets. This reinforces the theory that it’s important to be active on social media, not just a lurker.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, this was my entry in the Ugly Sweater Contest:

The winning ugly holiday sweater

And this was my competition:

The competition

If you ask me, Drew (first row, second from left) gave me a run for the money with his festive, handmade, light-up sweatshirt. Or Matt, with his plaid bow tie and candy cane pants (OK, maybe he should have been disqualified).

My point is, without the advantage of social media, I may not have won the coveted title of Annodyne’s Ugly Holiday Sweater. So if you think you can omit social media strategy from your own marketing mix, think again.

Now that the contest is over, I know who the real winner is: social media.

Darcy Grabenstein is senior copywriter at Annodyne.


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Diana Altobelli Dec 17

A Year in Review: 2014 Social Media Wrap-up


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It’s that time of year again. The holiday season is upon us and, before you know it, we’ll be saying “Peace out 2014, hello 2015!” However, before we close that chapter, let’s take a look back at all the juicy major happenings in social media throughout the past year. Before I go on, can you think of any off the top of your head?

goodbye past hello future

In January, one social media giant did not start the New Year off on the right foot. I guess it didn’t get the whole resolution memo? The class-action lawsuit against Facebook claimed that “Sponsored Stories” product shared users’ “like” data with friends without the ability to opt out. Facebook ended up paying $20 million to members of the suit as a result of the settlement. (See story here)

Another huge story was the West African Ebola outbreak in March. It didn’t make waves here until later in the year when infected citizens were brought to the United States. The virus has actually been around since 1976, with multiple outbreaks over the years.

March also gave us a pretty epic photo, the “group selfie,” as I like to call it. This was from the Oscars, hosted by Ellen DeGeneres. Talk about celeb status. The photo, posted on Twitter, was historically the most re-tweeted image on the social network.

ellengroupselfie

In other news, the friendly ghost Snapchat had a little problem with a breach of security. More than 98,000 files were stolen and posted to good ol’ Pirate Bay. Many of these photos contained inappropriate content and, given that a majority of Snapchat users are teenagers, the images were quickly deleted by site moderators. This also led to another incident where 4.6 million users and their phone numbers were hacked. This put Snapchat in the dog house with the FTC; the site will face privacy monitoring for the next 20 years under a consent decree.

Then we have the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. The organization has received more than $106 million in donations from well over 3 million donors. The social media movement created substantial awareness for the disease and related research efforts. Even celebrities jumped on the bandwagon, donating thousands of dollars in the process. Below is a snapshot of Oprah being a good sport. It caused quite a stir on social media. I have never seen that many videos posted in my entire Facebook career. What I found even more interesting is I knew what would happen in every video but for some reason I kept watching, whether it was friends or A-listers.

oprah ice bucket challenge

Then we have what you would think to be the BEST POTATO SALAD EVER. A man from Ohio managed to raise $55,000 on Kickstarter at his first attempt in making the dish.

 

kickstarter potato salad

In the late summer there was a celebrity photo leak, the death of comedian Robin Williams and, one of my favorites, no more like gating on Facebook! I always hated having to like a page to enter a contest, although I understand why organizations did so. In my opinion, it just seemed ineffective because you weren’t really getting quality “likes.” You want users who are going to continue to engage with your content, not just try to win an iPad or a gift card, for that matter.

The new iPhone was released in the early fall and  surprisingly, as always, people still went crazy over the new size offerings. I don’t get the waiting-in-line part (however, I am an iPhone owner).

The social media world is ending out the year with The Target Guy and Kim K. breaking the Internet. Not sure if those are proud statements. Alex from Target was an overnight sensation and even made it to CNN news. Well done. If only I could craft something as creative as a photo of the checkout guy at Target.

As the holidays are upon us, let’s take time to reflect on all the good things that occurred during 2014. Because, let’s be real, we can now pin our posts at the top of our Google+ profiles! For those active users on Google+, this might mean something to a few.

So, goodbye 2014, hello 2015. I’m coming for you!

 


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Diana Altobelli Sep 9

Social Media Tips That Will Earn You Passing Grades — Well, Not Really


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As students head back to school, it becomes harder to monitor their social media use. According to WCAX, 73 percent of all Americans ages 12-17 have a Facebook account, which is probably not the number parents want to hear. However, I am going to give you some great tips on how one can still stay focused even with all the tempting tools out there that lead to procrastination. Also, especially in lieu of the recent “scandal” of leaked nude celebrity photos.

Not only can Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton’s photo leaks teach us all a lesson, but this reinforces the importance of reputation risk management. Children may not understand the long-term effects due to a simple mistake of taking an inappropriate photo, and I know parents would not want their children to learn the hard way. While we may think our information is safeguarded in the cloud, our personal album or what have you, we can all learn once that information is public there is no telling how it can be hacked, leaked, or distributed. So before your child takes a video, a Snap Chat, or posts a photo, make sure he or she knows that personal information isn’t safe.

back-to-school-books-and-apple

Moving on to the fact that Labor Day has just passed, I think we are all well aware that class is back in session. With students’ first-day-of-school photos as status updates to what color their lunchbox is, we really can know it all when it comes to social. Posting a status update on your #OOTD for the first day back and bus ride shenanigans will be all the rage. So it’s time to set some boundaries.

Personally, I never had a cell phone until I was a freshman in high school, and then it was mainly to call my parents when I needed to be picked up from cross country or basketball practice. I did not have texting, data plans or a social media account. So the times are a-changing. With the constant distractions we all have in today’s world, it is important to set guidelines for cell phone use both at home and in the classroom! Although this post is not your typical marketing content, I think it’s important to have this conversation.

teenage-girls-taking-selfies

No, don’t go friending your kids on every social channel because you might as well be reading their diaries.  I think a reasonable request would be to have them check their cell phones at the door, say when doing homework after school or studying for exams. This way, they don’t have the distraction in hand. Setting some basic ground rules will hopefully result in fewer arguments.

The next big one which we hear about constantly is cyber bullying. Educate your child on how to lower the risk of being a victim. We all know that social networks provide the ability to adjust our privacy settings. Blocking individuals, being selective on who to follow or friend and knowing how much of your information is public can protect them from potential cyber threats.

Not only do you want your kids to be safe from bullying, but you want them to succeed in the classroom and get rest. Establish a time where cell phone use is no longer allowed because, according to the Yale Medical Group, using a device right up until bedtime can cause poor health problems and sleep troubles. Give your body time to shut down. Unplug from the world and just be smart when it comes to social media use and guidelines.

Stay tuned for more blogs on search marketing. Have more tips on back-to-school social media use? Please share your comments below.

Diana Altobelli is a search marketing coordinator at Annodyne.


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Diana Altobelli Aug 8

How to Build a Successful YouTube Brand


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Millions of different websites, Facebook pages, and YouTube channels are used to leverage building brands. However, only a few are great at making an impact on either one or multiple social media platforms. So great, in fact, that these brands can make a living off their YouTube profits.

Being that I am a product junkie myself, I tend to follow style bloggers and “beauty gurus” on all media channels. Analyzing probably way more than any other subscriber does due to my background in marketing, I admire the strategies they use on each platform. These individuals are building a brand, not based on a logo or a service they offer, but simply using their personality, sense of style and product knowledge.

1.   Brand Your Image: In order to build a successful YouTube brand, it’s important to decipher how you want to be perceived. Do you want to be a search engine marketing specialist, or a style blogger who just so happens to send out email blasts of the latest discounts and sales? You want to make sure you choose a proper name from the get-go. Do you have a brand or do you want to represent yourself? This is crucial, considering you can’t change your vanity URL once it has been selected.

By staying consistent, you will help users find you across all social networks. For example, Nicole Guerriero uses the same vanity URL on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter so that her followers can easily find her.

youtube-blog

how-to-youtube

how-to-youtube

2.  Time to Get Creative: We’ve all heard it by now: Content is king. Well, even though there may not be a lot of text on YouTube, you still must publish something worthy of spreading. Typically if you were a search engine marketing coordinator like me, you might share educational insight on how to pass the Google Adwords Fundamentals test. If you’re an aspiring comedian, you’d want to post some skits you’ve been working on. Don’t just publish to publish. Choose quality over quantity and STAY CONSISTENT. There is nothing more agitating than following someone you admire and seeing the same videos all week long. (I know, how demanding of me!)

The content doesn’t stop there. For professional videos, investing in some camera equipment can help you produce high-quality videos, provide better lighting (making yourself look better) and amplify the sound system.

3.  Let’s Get to Promoting: Once your video is done and edited to the point where you are more than satisfied, it is time to let the world know you published a video! It will take more than writing a description, creating a catchy headline and optimizing the video to take off. YouTube has made life a bit easier with the ability to share videos across a majority of social networks.

In all honesty, the only reason I will know a new YouTube video has been posted is because I follow the person or company on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Being that I am not on YouTube daily checking for recently uploaded videos, it makes life easier to follow them on other networks. This is just a prime example of how promoting works.

Full-time YouTube users might already have a blog, so publish on your blog page and be sure to link your YouTube channel everywhere! You can put the URL on your Facebook fan page, Twitter page and Google+. The more links you have out there to your channel, the greater chances it will appear in search results, get retweeted, re-shared and potentially go viral.

In the end, these are all ways to build the brand and come full circle. It’s not just about choosing a catchy name, having a great sense of style, or to be extremely intelligent about Internet marketing. It’s about showing your personality, giving your opinion, and providing valuable insight in hopes of reaching X amount of views.

As with most things in life, building a brand takes time. It doesn’t happen overnight. It’s not a get-rich-quick kind of scheme. So if you are passionate about what you do, stick with it and follow these basic beginner fundamentals to build a successful YouTube channel. The Google predecessor isn’t going anywhere and is the second largest “search engine” utilized in the world. So if you’re thinking about starting a channel, take it one step at a time — starting with your objective.

Diana Altobelli is a search engine marketing coordinator at Annodyne.


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Diana Altobelli Jul 14

How the World Spends Time Online – Now Vs. Then


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If you’re interested in seeing how the world’s online activity has changed in just four short years, check out this infographic courtesy of Microsoft Advertising via Rick Ramos. It shows “Where the World Spends Its Time Online.” Not that it would surprise you, but social media is where a majority of users spend their time online. However, does that mean search engine optimization is no longer important when it comes to brand awareness in the media realm? Well, if you keep up with any SEO news, you will find that Social Media Optimization is a major role player in optimization strategies.

Social-Media-TakeOver

In having said that, is the increase of social media due to the fact that mobile device use continues to rise? Or quite possibly the placement of social media applications on the home screens of our Androids and iPhones makes access to the networks just that much easier. Access to this information will allow marketers to target their audiences more specifically. For example, if you want to target the largest number of users, what is more important than finding out where all of them are hanging out? Being that a majority of users get their news and updates through social networks, this makes for a great avenue to market on. In the below infographic from 2010, you will find that only 22 percent of time spent online was on social networks.

 online-marketing

As a result, social media optimization can no longer be ignored. One, being that it seems to be taking over the search industry; and in my eyes if you’re website is not coming up in the search results organically you better hope your social media pages are populating. The statistics are there, according to eMarketer in May 2013: “US consumers’ enthusiasm for social media and digital video is showing no signs of fatigue.” Who knows where social media marketing will take us in the future? However, right now it is vital in any online marketing strategy. Whether it’s be search engine optimization or brand awareness, it’s good to show face in this digital age.

Diana Altobelli is a search marketing coordinator at Annodyne.


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