Looking ahead to 49ers’ tough free agency questions

first_imgSANTA CLARA — When it comes to debating which 49ers merit bringing back to 2019, more questions are centered on those with current contracts than expiring ones. Let’s examine their in-house options to ponder ahead of the March 11, free-agency kickoff:UNDER CONTRACT (signed through)Defensive end Arik Armstead (2019): He’s started every game in a career-best season, and coaches rave about his run defense (46 tackles, 6 for loss). His three sacks are, gulp, a career high. 2019 salary: $9.046 …last_img read more

Interview with Todd Defren, Principal at SHIFT Communications

first_imgTodd Defren is a principal at SHIFT Communications, author of the blog PR-Squared, and co-founder of the Social Media Club. He has been a major player in the PR industry’s transition into the PR 2.0 era and will be giving a live webinar tomorrow at 1PM ET as part of Inbound Marketing University. 1. As social media has evolved in the past five years, how has SHIFT adapted its PR strategy to the new applications and media outlets?  The entire industry has changed in the past five years.  Whereas the Social Media News Release felt like it was an innovation a few years ago, now it is just one of many tools and technologies.  I’d like to think we have gone further than most in trying to adapt our policies and practices.  It’s a constant challenge to stay ahead of the curve.  2. What have been the biggest challenges with PR 2.0?   While the technologies have largely been free (for the most part), the level of noise has gotten exponentially louder and the number of people that we need to potentially reach out to has gotten exponentially larger.  The amount of work has gotten much larger. You used to have a list of the top 50 mainstream reporters and analysts for the industry your client was in.  Now you have to add to that 50 Facebook group administrators and the 5,000 people on Twitter who might be appropriate for any given client.  It’s just as much about the edgework with end users as it is with those top 50 mainstream reporters.  3.  What is the best way to increase your visibility if you are a small business and do not already have an established brand on the internet? Provide relevant content to the right people in the right channels and do it everyday, as often as possible.  4.  At HubSpot, we teach readers that creating remarkable content to market their products and services will draw people into their websites.  What are ways to reach different audiences with this content once it is out there?     It’s not rocket science.  It takes not just the daily focus on content creation and promotion, but a daily focus on engagement in the right communities.  You can’t look at this as a marketer who is all about broadcasting content.  You have got to look at it as a marketer who is all about adding value.  While some of that value is going to come from your own content, it can’t exclusively come from your content or you’ll be pretty quickly sussed out as somebody who is only in this for themselves.  The in it for yourself mentality may be what you think is going to help pay the mortgage this month, but it’s not going to create long-term relationships that you can count on for longer term revenue potential. 5.  A lot of businesses struggle with the decision of charging for resources or giving them away for free.  You recently launched a new feature for Twitter, clickablenow, and decided to change from charging for it to giving it away for free. What factors influenced your decision to offer the application for free?  What did you learn from this and how has it performed since you made the change?  We had some internal debate over whether or not we should charge for clickablenow.  From the beginning, we agreed that we would listen to the community.  If we found feedback that free was the better way to go, we wouldn’t be surprised by it and we would react quickly. There was a lot of enthusiasm for the idea but everyone balked at the 20 bucks.  We dropped the 20 bucks and the overall usage went way up.      6. Can you describe a PR campaign in social media that has done surprisingly well in the past year?  Why and how did it become so successful? One of the things we are proud of at SHIFT was our work with H&R Block.  We worked with them for the 2009 tax season.  We were proud to help a big, established brand like H&R Block refine its approach to social media.  Whereas before they had gotten a lot of credit for experimenting across many different social media channels.  We did some hardcore research to find out which were the most appropriate and impactful social media channels.  We encouraged them to get out of SecondLife and, for the first time, to respond directly to users who are looking for free tax advice on Amazon.com and Yahoo! Answers.  This combination resulted in their tax-cut product becoming #1 in the market segment for tax-cut software over TurboTax for the first time, which was a big milestone for them.  It proved to us that a smart approach to social media that is relevant, responsive and diplomatic can absolutely help your business.   If you want to learn more about PR 2.0, register for Defren’s live webinar tomorrow, Tuesday, August 11 at 1 PM ET.     Free Inbound Marketing University Online Training ProgramDownload HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing University online training programIMU includes 11 free webinar classes and notesheets. The program drills into each component of inbound marketing and prepares you for the Inbound Marketing certification exam. Originally published Aug 10, 2009 12:49:00 PM, updated October 01 2019 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Public Relations Topics:last_img read more

A Marketer’s Guide to the 6 Phases of a Website Redesign

first_imgKeith Moehring is business development manager and consultant at PR 20/20, an inbound marketing agency and HubSpot Partner. You can follow him on Twitter at @keithmoehring . He also actively contributes to http://www.PR2020.com/blog . A website is the cornerstone of any marketing campaign. It is the place where customers, prospects, media, competitors, investors, peers and job candidates turn to first when learning more about your organization and its products or services. Because of this, it’s essential that marketers take a leadership role in any company website redesign project .Free Workbook: How to Plan a Successful Website RedesignTo help you avoid any common missteps, we’ve developed a free ebook — “ A Marketer’s Guide to Website Redesign .” The ebook details the six main steps involved in the website redesign process , from the perspective of a marketer who doesn’t have a technology background. 1. The Prep To avoid delays, take the time to gather all necessary information upfront, before it is needed. Items to gather include:Analytics tracking codes.Logo file in a vector format (i.e. .EPS, .AI, or .CDR).Main contact information for current website host.Google Webmaster Central, Bing Webmaster Center and Yahoo SiteExplorer verification codes.Branding guidelines and all relevant collateral documents. 2. Discovery Collaborate with all website stakeholders (i.e. C-level executives, marketing department, sales department, and IT) to define the most important aspects of your new site, including:Buyer personas.Site objectives. Calls to action .Color scheme.Page layout and design preferences.Site features and functionality. 3. Design & Structure To help communicate your vision of the new website, develop a comprehensive creative brief, detailing everything you defined in phase two. Your web team will use this as a guide when designing and building out your new site.At minimum your creative brief should include:Graphic sitemap outlining all pages on your site, including main navigation options.Page layout and design preferences, with screen shots or URLs of examples.Color scheme, including primary, secondary and accent colors.Navigation options you want available on the site. 4. Content & Optimization Visitors don’t come to your site for the cool design or fancy navigation; they come for the content. Develop content that is concise, scannable and engaging. It needs to deliver key messaging quickly and clearly, and then drive visitors to take a desired call to action. To help this content get found, it also needs to be optimized avoid priority keywords.When developing content, consider the following suggestions:Create a keyword map that assigns each page on your site a priority keyword (or two) for which it will be optimized.Define the tone and style of your content.Assign the development of website copywriting to your team’s strongest writer (avoid using multiple authors). Optimize each page after the content has been created. 5. Build Out & Quality Assurance This is the phase where all your hard work comes to fruition. It includes populating the site with all content, setting up 301 redirects, and completing a thorough review of the site to ensure that everything displays and works properly. To streamline the upload process:Create an upload cheatsheet that will serve as a how-to guide for adding content into your content management system (CMS).Before loading content, create all the pages first, and organize them according to your sitemap.Upload all images and graphics into a designated folder in the CMS so they are easy to locate when it comes time to add them to a page.Put together a team internally to upload all content and formatting into the web pages.Perform a quality assurance by checking to make sure all formatting is correct, all links and features work, and that everything displays properly across all browsers. 6. The Launch Finally, launch the new website and ensure it is being indexed accurately by Google and other search engines. To do this, take the time to:Check that all 301 redirects are working.Log into each search engine’s webmaster center to confirm all verfication code is installed properly, and then submit your XML sitemap.Verify that all analytics tracking code is installed.Review Google Webmaster Tools every few days to ensure there are no pages Google had indexed on your old site that it can no longer find. Website Redesign Kit Website Redesign Originally published Jul 14, 2010 6:00:00 PM, updated July 28 2017 Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

Facebook Deals Unveiled, Goes Head-on with Groupon

first_img Originally published Apr 26, 2011 4:26:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Topics: Facebook is a latecomer to the local deals industry. It is clear that the social networking giant is looking towards integration with its existing features and users to overcome the first-mover advantage of Groupon. An interesting implication of Facebook’s Deals platform is its potential to fuel the use of Facebook Credits, the company’s virtual currency. Facebook’s test project in the local deals industry places the social network in direct competition with Groupon and LivingSocial. Like the existing coupon-based services, Facebook Deals will appear in users’ email inboxes. In addition, relevant deals will appear in users’ news feeds. The New York Times Marketing TakeawayFacebook’s entry into the already crowded daily deal space solidifies the fact that the industry is here to stay. Businesses must plan accordingly to maximize benefits from local deal platforms. As a marketer or a business owner, you should consider these deals as a marketing expense since most will make little or no money from transactions. Facebook Updatescenter_img It is no secret that Facebook wants to own all parts of the social Web. Quickly following Facebook’s announcement of its new Send Button, Thinking of local deals as a marketing expense will move your mindset away from selling and into marketing. If you participate in a local deal, determine how to track what percent of purchasers are new to your business. Additionally, plan strategies such as email list opt-in at check to establish a way to market to new customers and get them to return to your business for a regular or a less-discounted purchase. What do you think of Facebook’s entry into the local deals arena? Facebook Deals will allow users to pay for deals with credit cards as well as Facebook Credits. Payment is a major point of friction on the social Web. It is a problem that few companies, aside from Apple, have been able to solve. Clearly, Facebook Credits is an attempt to emulate Apple in reducing friction in social Web transactions. broke an embargo about Facebook’s next step in world domination, Facebook Deals. Today, Facebook began to test its new deals platform in five cities: Atlanta, Austin, Dallas, San Diego and San Francisco. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

12 Awesome LinkedIn Infographics in 2011

first_img Originally published Sep 1, 2011 11:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack LinkedIn Marketing Topics: As a marketer executing a social media marketing strategy, LinkedIn should be one of your top priorities. And with the social network attracting over 100 million business professionals to its user base, you can’t be wrong.Last week, we published “The Ultimate Cheat Sheet for Mastering LinkedIn,” which serves as a helpful guide to some of the most hidden, under-utilized tricks for taking advantage of all LinkedIn has to offer. But if you still need convincing that LinkedIn is a social network where you should be spending some of your social media marketing time, the awesome statistics and data in the following 2011 infographics could serve as a wake-up call.1. 100 Million Professionals by LinkedIn2. The Value of Being Linkedin by OnlineMBA.com3. The LinkedIn Profile by Lab424. LinkedIn’s Road to IPO by The Credit Score Blog5. How to Be the Man (or Woman) on LinkedIn by SocialMediaSonar.com6. The State of LinkedIn by Vincenzo Cosenza7. LinkedIn Identity by Gigya8. Battle of the Sexes: Who Are the Savviest Networkers? by LinkedIn9. LinkedIn for B2B Marketers by LeadFormix10. A Snapshot of LinkedIn on its 8th Birthday by paidContent.org 11. LinkedIn at a Glance by leftygbalogh.com12. Sequencing the Startup DNA by LinkedInHow do you use LinkedIn for marketing? If you don’t already, has any of the data in these infographics convinced you to start including LinkedIn in your social media marketing strategy?last_img read more

4 Mistakes Marketers Make With QR Codes

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Brand Experience Topics: Originally published Sep 21, 2011 1:15:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Question: How do we become cool and trendy inbound marketers?Answer: Try QR codes.Response: Hooray! We’ll put a QR code on our website today.(Weeks later…)Question: What were your results?Answer: Uh…?There are a few problems with this interaction, and many modern marketers are facing them today. QR codes are quickly integrating into marketing efforts as a tool for leading consumers to some online destination: a website, blog, social media account, etc. As a quick reminder, QR codes are simply 2D barcodes that can be scanned using a smartphone reader application. Your mobile browser will then direct you to the linked site. However, many are making small mistakes that make an immense impact on their strategy—or lack thereof. Here are four mistakes to avoid when braiding QR codes into your marketing efforts.1. Using QR Codes OnlineQR literally stands for quick response. Making a QR code your Facebook picture, Twitter icon, or posting one on your blog isn’t exactly creating a situation for a quick response. Instead, doing so asks visitors to take out their smartphone, open the reader application, scan the item, and then see the link open in a separate mobile browser. For such online platforms, just use a link. There’s no need to get fancy when a simple link can navigate the consumer from one site to the other faster. One of the best ways to leverage QR codes is in places where your audience is already on the go and only has access to their smartphone, like when they’re out and about and away from their desktop or laptop computers.Think of QR codes as a tactic that just falls under the mobile marketing umbrella rather than marketing as a whole. To learn more ways to effectively utilize these nifty little 2D barcodes, check out these 5 useful ecommerce applications of QR codes.2. Ignoring Traffic SourcesLet’s imagine you’ve developed this brilliant plan that includes an awesome QR code as a tactic. The idea is unique, the execution is strong, and the feedback is positive. But is it actually doing something? To assess whether or not your QR code is even effective, you need to track where your traffic is coming from, as well as how much traffic is actually produced.Instead of generating the QR code with a direct link to the landing page of your choice, use bitly.com to shorten your link, and use that version instead. Bitly allows you to analyze how many clicks (in this case, scans) that shortened link received. Now you will have data detailing how many people scanned the code, on what day they scanned it, and which country they scanned from. (The latter would be helpful if your campaign included an international audience.) For more information about creating tracking URLs, check out the “Marketer’s Guide to Tracking Online Campaigns.”3. Linking to Boring Web PagesWhere are you sending people with your QR code? Your first goal with a QR code is to give people an amalgam of curiosity and desire to take the moment to scan. Once those two aspects are fulfilled, there better be some form of customized content for them to discover. One method could include posting a special YouTube video and making it exclusive to QR code scanners only by selecting the “unlisted” sharing option, which means only people with the link to the video can view it. Now, you have exclusive video as an incentive for anyone who scans the QR code.One major mistake people make when linking QR codes to URLs is in linking to their general website’s homepage. Make the most out of the code scanner’s experience by instead creating customized landing pages to point the code to. There, you can provide instructions on what the user should do next or use the page to offer them a discount or another offer.4. Linking to a “Web Page Unavailable”Whatever you do, do not send people to a web page that reads, “Page Cannot Be Displayed,” or “Web Page Unavailable.” In other words, check to ensure you’re linking to a mobile-optimized website. For example, websites built on Flash are not encrypted to open on a mobile browser. Test and check that your code works well on mobile devices before plastering it everywhere.Have you experimented with a QR code-inspired campaign? What have you learned from your experience?Image Credit: Aral Balkanlast_img read more

What a Top-Notch Lead Management Program Looks Like

first_img Originally published Jan 27, 2012 3:45:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Lead Nurturing Walk into any active sales room, and it’s easy to tell how time-intensive most sales operations are. To make the hours spent worthwhile, it’s important to ensure that your sales team is only talking to the most qualified leads. Lead management is a strategy and set of corresponding tools that help companies filter out unqualified leads and better understand the buying cycle of their good leads. When executed well, lead management makes your marketing team more effective, your sales team more precise, and your leads happier. Lead management programs vary from company to company, but here are several important components to consider.  Prospect Intelligence For B2B companies, lead management should actually begin before a lead ever fills out a form. Individual website visitors who are still in the browsing stage can actually tell you a great deal about what content is attracting them to your company. By using prospect tracking software , which reports on the IP address associated with site visitors, you can understand which types of companies are visiting your site. Connecting company activity on your site with a certain type of content or topic can help you better prepare your sales team for when a lead from that company later converts on your site.    Lead Intelligence When someone converts on your website by completing a form or downloading a piece of content, the relationship with that lead begins. By using analytics  to keep tabs of the content leads view and the interactions they have with your company, you can build a more relevant, personalized experience for each lead. Lead intelligence begins by developing a profile for your lead with the information provided and creating a place to store all future interactions and data on that lead. After you have that profile created, you can begin to segment your leads based on their interests and send emails and other communications that are targeted and relevant to them. Lead Scoring The good news about inbound marketing is that it can attract high volumes of leads. The challenge then becomes, how do you separate the good, quality leads from the people who are just looking around? That’s where lead scoring comes in. With lead scoring , you can attach values to each of your leads based on their professional information and the behavior they’ve displayed on your website.  Get started by meeting with your sales team and coming to an agreement about what makes a quality lead. What types of pages viewed or content downloaded indicate that the lead is getting close to a decision point?  What lead activities do you want to prioritize? After you’ve come to an agreement on quality indicators, you can use a lead scoring app like HubSpot’s Lead Grader to assign custom scores to each activity so your most qualified leads float to the top. Customer Relationship Management Another key component of successful lead management is the integration of your marketing software and your customer relationship management (CRM) software. Too often, there is a divide between marketing efforts and the revenue that those efforts drive. Connecting your marketing software to your CRM system enables you to bridge that gap and get a complete view of your marketing funnel, from the campaigns and channels that first brought customers into to your company to their most recent point of sale. Marketers call this kind of end-to-end view “closed-loop reporting.” Closed-loop reporting can help you understand which marketing efforts resulted in actual purchases so you know how to invest your marketing budget more strategically. To get started, make sure you have a marketing platform and a CRM system that have the ability to integrate through APIs.   Lead Nurturing Lead nurturing is all about understanding the nuances of your leads’ timing and needs. Basic lead nurturing involves a tightly connected series of emails with a coherent purpose and an abundance of useful, relevant content. Lead nurturing campaigns are typically kicked off in a scheduled cadence after someone takes a specific action on your site, like requesting a trial or signing up for a webinar, and they reflect the action taken. Alternately,  behavior-based lead nurturing , often called marketing automation , enables a company to trigger communications based on real-time customer behavior. Warming leads up over time through helpful, educational emails will help them get to a decision point more quickly. To set up your first lead nurturing campaign, think about the typical buying cycle of your leads. Design related emails that address the goals of each of these stages (for example: education, comparison shopping, cost-assessment). Remember, lead nurturing emails should be designed to help your leads, not push an immediate sale. Use a lead nurturing program to time these communications appropriately throughout the buying cycle.  The Complete Picture Customer relationships take time. Research from Gleanster suggests that even when it comes to qualified leads, more than 50% aren’t ready to buy on the day they first convert on your site . You’ve put a lot of work into attracting leads, and often, it’s how you manage them after the conversion that will determine if your time was well spent.  The power of lead management comes in adapting your communications to reflect a comprehensive understanding of your leads’ needs and timeline so that when you hand them over to your sales team, all parties are informed and ready to move forward. To learn more about how to get started with lead management, download our free ebook, Lead Management Made Simple . Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics:last_img read more

Now It’s Your Turn: Who Should Own Your Content? #GreatDebate

first_imgThe results are in, folks! After a day-long debate, we’ve finally come to a conclusion about this “who owns your content” debacle. The conclusion? This probably can’t be sorted out in four blog posts. 😉 By wading through our contributors’ arguments and our community’s comments, we’ve made significant steps in a) getting this on people’s minds and b) inching closer to possible solutions.Download 195+ visual marketing design templates to use for social media posts, infographics, and more. Want to see how the debate shook out? Keep on reading. We compiled the top HubSpot blog comments, some favorite tweets, and even a few blog posts from experts who decided to join in on the fun so you can get caught up on the discussion and make your own decisions. Pick a Side: A Recap of the ArgumentsWatching the debate happen in the blog posts and on social media, people pretty much fell into four camps:Camp #1: Whoever buys the content owns the content because that’s how transactions work.Taking the straightforward perspective, Tom Walkett posed this in a blog post comment:”I can’t possibly image that anyone would expect to own something if someone else or a company paid them to create it. If you want to own something create it on your dime. With that said, if your personal brand is so powerful that the paying entity puts significant value on your authorship, then you can and should negotiate the copyright ownership up front in your contract. Of course, if you’re an employee, why would you expect ownership rights to anything you create using company resources? Do you think software engineers should demand ownership from Microsoft for writing the Windows operating system? As the old saying goes, “You only deserve what you negotiate.” If you didn’t negotiate for the copyright upfront, there is no debate, unless you think it is appropriate to take something that doesn’t belong to you.” Camp #2: Companies own the content — and that’s a good thing.In a more passionate camp than those in Camp #1, Camp #2 chose to defend companies because writing for a company can help build your personal brand. On Up and to the Right, a section on HubSpot’s Inbound Hub, Beth Stackpole tackles this argument from the perspective of a freelance journalist working with the media. Her take? This debate is nothing new — it’s something we’ve been dealing with for decades. Check out her post to see what she suggests instead.Another post supporting this perspective came from our friends at Overgo Studio. It also offers this money quote to further hit home her point:”Think of it this way. I see nothing wrong with my employer having ownership of my content because I have ownership of all the knowledge I learned from working at that company. Am I going to use that knowledge even after I leave that company? Yes. But I’m not going to claim I learned it all on my own. I’m going to give credit to my past employer and the experiences I had while I was there.” Check out this post from The Weidert Group, which also argued the merits of freelancers allowing companies to own their content so they can bolster their personal brand by offering this perspective. While most of the folks in this camp are coming from the viewpoint of their company, we had one person agree loud and proud on Twitter:Honestly I don’t have an issue with an organization I used to work for retaining the rights to my content #greatdebate— Ben Wachtel (@benwachtel24) December 3, 2013Camp #3: Creators should own any content they create. On the other end of the spectrum, folks were getting heated for the content creator’s side. John McTigue took a pretty firm stance using an interesting parallel industry:Content ownership is obsolete, just like music ownership. Sharing is what you’re after as an author. #greatdebate— John McTigue (@jmctigue) December 3, 2013Sharing isn’t just great for the author — it’s also great for companies wanting to build their own brands. To argue this point, Chris Handy from Think Handy recorded this video to defend this position:We also had some people, including my colleague Corey Eridon, weigh in on the ramifications of company ownership, especially when it comes to creating genuine company brands:The more ownership companies take, the less genuine the creator will be. The content/company suffer most from it. #greatdebate @hubspot— Corey Eridon (@Corey_bos) December 3, 2013Venkatesh Iyer also chimed in, providing an interesting middle ground:Your employer’s owns benefits from your content, not the content itself. You own content you created. Forever. #greatdebate— Venkatesh Iyer (@venkyiyer58) December 3, 2013Camp #4: No one has a clue.Last but certainly not least were the folks who, well, have no freaking clue. Commenter Eric Wittlake seemed to have said it best:”The real issue today is no one even knows! Most companies don’t have formalized and well-understood agreements with employee content creators about who owns the rights to the content that is created and what licenses are granted to the other party.”Real Problems, Possible SolutionsOkay, so that’s how the arguments all fell out, but most of us would agree that we’re missing one huge question: What should you do about it? There were two suggestions:1) Only ghostwriters should give up content. Zack Bridges offered this solution on Twitter:Payer gets full ownership when content is produced by a ghost writer, but a premium should be paid to remove the writer. #GreatDebate— Zack Bridges (@z_bridges) December 3, 20132) Negotiate a contract to work these issues out before you start creating.The other solution most often suggested was to make the contract work for you. Jeremiah Owyang urged creators to do their homework:”Read your employment contracts carefully. Prior, I worked at a company, and all IP created during my employment was owned by them. That also meant my Facebook content. I’m not giving judgement either way on who should own, but I certainly will be mindful when working at a future company on who owns which IP.”And depending on who you are and who you plan to work with, this negotiation process could be easier than you think. Doug Kessler added:”A pre-nuptial agreement on these issues does feel like the way to go. The nature of the pre-nup will depend on the balance of power. A star blogger may be able to hold out for greater copyright and usage terms than an unknown could negotiate.”Thanks for tuning into the #GreatDebate! These are purely the findings we’ve found by debating this today, but let’s continue the conversation. Where do you stand? Share your thoughts in the Twitter stream or comments below:Tweets about “#greatdebate” Originally published Dec 3, 2013 4:02:03 PM, updated July 28 2017 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics: Content Marketinglast_img read more

Which Marketing Tactics Are The Most Overrated? [New Data]

first_img Marketing Trends Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack If you were to ask a room full of marketers from all over the world which marketing tactics they think are least worth the investment, you’d probably get a flurry of strong opinions.But what if you asked them to name the most overrated marketing tactic? Would their answers vary that much?We surveyed 4,000 marketers and salespeople around the globe for our 2015 State of Inbound report and found that, no matter where they came from, marketers agreed on the #1 most overrated marketing tactic.Specifically, we asked our survey respondents to rate the following marketing tactics on how overrated they think they are: blogging, social media, sales enablement, collateral development, SEO, email marketing, traditional paid advertising, online paid advertising, and PR.Here’s what we found.What’s the Most Overrated Marketing Tactic?According to our research, marketers around the globe agree that traditional paid advertising is the #1 most overrated marketing tactic.Click to EnlargeEven outbound marketers think so: We found that 32% of outbound marketers said outbound marketing tactics, like traditional paid advertising, are overrated.Interestingly, while agencies and vendors agreed traditional paid channels are the most overrated, nonprofit marketers cited social media as the most overrated tactic.When we segmented these results by region, here’s what we found:In Australia and New Zealand (ANZ): More people (42%) cited traditional outbound marketing tactics — like print ads, outdoor ads, and broadcasts — as the most overrated marketing tactic than anywhere else in the world. According to folks in Australia and New Zealand, the second most overrated marketing tactic was social media (14%), followed by online paid advertising (11%). The least overrated marketing tactics were blogging (1%) and collateral development (2%).In Asia-Pacific (APAC): Most people (28%) cited traditional outbound marketing tactics as the most overrated marketing tactic. The next most overrated marketing tactic, according to people in Asia-Pacific, was online paid advertising tactics (15%), followed by social media (14%). The least overrated marketing tactics were sales enablement (4%) and blogging (5%).In Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA): Just over one-third of people (34%) cited traditional outbound marketing tactics as the most overrated marketing tactic. The next most overrated marketing tactic, according to folks in this region, was online paid advertising (13%), followed by social media (11%). The least overrated marketing tactics were collateral development (4%) and sales enablement (4%).In Latin America (LATAM): Just over one-third of people (34%) cited traditional outbound marketing tactics as the most overrated marketing tactic. The next most overrated marketing tactic, according to folks in this region, was social media (15%), followed by online paid advertising (14%). The least overrated marketing tactics were collateral development (3%) and sales enablement (3%).In North America (NORTHAM): Most people (41%) cited traditional outbound marketing tactics as the most overrated marketing tactic. According to people in North America, the next most overrated marketing tactic was online paid advertising (16%), followed by social media (11%). The least overrated marketing tactics were sales enablement (2%) and SEO (3%). A Few ObservationsEven outbound marketers think outbound marketing is overrated.When it comes to generating leads and filling the top of your sales funnel, traditional outbound marketing tactics — where marketers push their message out far and wide in the hopes that it’ll resonate — isn’t as effective as it used to be.It comes as no surprise that more marketers year-over-year are universally embracing inbound marketing tactics (where marketers help themselves “get found” by people already learning about and shopping in their industry) over outbound marketing tactics. Our data shows that in most regions of the world, content marketing tactics like blogging and collateral development were cited as the least overrated marketing tactics.But, according to our data, it’s not just inbound marketers who rate outbound marketing tactics as overrated — even those who identify as outbound marketers think so. Roughly 32% of survey respondents whose companies identify as primarily outbound organizations called paid advertising the most overrated marketing tactic — the number one answer by a wide margin.Image Credit: HubSpot’s State of Inbound 2015 ReportWhile this could be explained by large companies (200+ employees) dedicating money to paid as a sort of diversification of their marketing portfolio, it’s worth repeating that the smart money is on inbound.But outbound efforts can be great supplements to your inbound efforts.Although marketers across the board rated outbound tactics as the most overrated of all marketing tactics, that doesn’t mean marketers should cut them out of their strategy completely.If it’s in your budget, online outbound marketing tactics like social media advertising and PPC are actually great supplements to those more effective inbound marketing efforts.When done right, ads can play an important role in giving proven content a more prominent stage, whether it’s in maximizing reach to an existing audience or launching campaigns in a new market. For example, users who are retargeted to are 70% more likely to convert. And native ads that include rich media boost conversion rates by up to 60%.And because these tactics are done online, it’s easier to measure their ROI — especially if you have the right tools. One reason online outbound tactics were rated as one of the most overrated marketing tactics under offline outbound tactics is likely because many marketers still haven’t been able to measure their efforts — though current tools can help you do that much better. (HubSpot customers: Read this post on our customer blog for tips on measuring the ROI of social using HubSpot.)That being said, each social network comes with its own strengths and weaknesses. Read this blog post to learn more about the pros and cons of advertising on each platform. If you want a more comprehensive guide to social media advertising, download and read our free ebook, The Essential Guide to Social Media Advertising.Are we seeing signs of social media fatigue?Finally, you’ll notice social media was the one inbound marketing tactic that was considered overrated in several regions of the world. For instance, although folks in Latin America have broadly adopted social media, 15% of marketers in that region said social media was overrated. In Australia and New Zealand, 14% cited social media as overrated. Not to mention, social media was the third most overrated marketing tactic in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and North America.What does this say about the state of social media marketing? Where is the fatigue coming from?After all, social media activity actually has potential to help increase website traffic and sales. It impacts your organic search presence, helping your content rank higher in search engines. It’s also a way for businesses to speak directly with their customers, which helps build customer loyalty. For example, a company called Coffee Groundz started using Twitter as a direct order channel with customers and increased sales and market share via Twitter by 20-30%.Marketers experiencing social media fatigue are likely having trouble strategizing and picking the right tools to achieve the results they’re looking for.For some, it could be an efficiency issue — which is why we recommend streamlining your efforts by using a social media content calendar.For others, it’s a lack of a solid social strategy. According to data analysis from SOBCon Founder and CEO Liz Strauss, a significant number of marketers “are using social channels in a non-useful manner: posting randomly, without a goal and without a true understanding of what can be accomplished on any particular social channel.” According to her analysis, consistency (even more than frequency) is the key to making an impact with your social media activity. When, how often, and which types of content to post will depend on a combination of research and your own testing.For others, finding relevant conversations in a sea of irrelevant ones can feel like finding a needle in a haystack. This is where it helps for social media posting to become a contextualized part of your marketing, sales, and customer service strategies. (HubSpot customers: Social Inbox plugs your social media accounts into your contact database so you can see which folks engaging with your content are strangers, leads, and customers.)What observations do you have from the results of our survey on overrated marketing tactics? Do you agree/disagree with our survey respondents? Share your thoughts with us in the comments. Topics: Originally published Nov 10, 2015 6:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017last_img read more

The Essential Packing Checklist: Hacks & Tips for Business Travelers [Infographic]

first_img98SaveWhat other packing tips do you have for business trips? Share them with us in the comments. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics: Originally published Dec 10, 2015 12:00:00 PM, updated July 28 2017center_img Productivity Packing for business travel can be a bit of a struggle. You leave your place thinking you’ve got everything you need, and then realize once you get to the airport that you forgot your phone charger. Sure, it’s easy to overlook things when you’re forced to pack light, but leaving behind the essentials could throw off your whole trip.What are the most important items you should always remember to pack? And what are some great traveling hacks that’ll make your life so much easier in the long run?For some key business traveling tips, check out the infographic below from Café Quill. It covers everything from an essential packing list, packing hacks and tips, and useful information on current TSA regulations. (Read this blog post for more business traveling hacks that’ll save you time, stress, and money.)98Save last_img read more