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    Your SoLoMo Digital Marketing Strategey

    Last updated 1 year ago

    SoLoMo Marketing for the Savvy Business

    SoLoMo (Social, Local, & Mobile) combines social media networking with mobile devices, and its location information.  SoLoMo is now bringing new marketing opportunities to businesses.  The mobile statistics in favor of SoLoMo marketing are staggering to say the least; where 90% of people researching products from their mobile phones are taking action within 24 hours of their search- This according to an article in In2 Communications

    There appears to be a huge untapped mobile market, because few businesses have built mobile friendly websites. Even if businesses have mobile friendly websites, they are only beginning to exploit the mobile phone location marketing that is now possible with some of the latest Google mobile search engine capabilities.  Maybe some businesses are counting on SoLoMo being a passing fad on the way to the next marketing focus.  The businesses that jump in now have the advantage, while competition is at a fairly low level.

    Mobile Internet users are rapidly expanding in 2013, and by the end of 2014 the number of mobile searches online is expected to exceed the wired Internet searches.  Businesses in almost every vertical market need to consider what mobile devices can do to expand their business.

    Sometimes businesses are focusing in on just the social and mobile aspects, but they are still counting on the fact that people keep their smart phones with them at all times. Those mobile users are searching online where ever they happen to be.   A recent case study for a retailer demonstrates this in an article – How a Retailer found Mobile Success On Facebook Through Socks and Stories.

      What is iEmSoLoMo marketing and is it on the horizon?

    So what additional marketing opportunities are on the horizon?  According to an article in Emarketer, there is a big push to expand SoLoMo further by adding email marketing that is mobile device sensitive. So I thought everyone could already get email on their mobile phones- what is this new thrust into mobile sensitive emails?  Companies worldwide are designing their emails to render differently on mobile devices- and then integrating their mobile marketing efforts with email marketing efforts. 

    In addition, I think Apple should also jump on board with the Email marketing addition to SoLoMo, so that we can coin a new term and call it iEmSoLoMo.

    Does this mean every time I come near a favorite restaurant or shop that I might receive a location sensitive and maybe time sensitive email for specials they might be having that day?  Will this change my mind about where to eat dinner or what items I might look for in shopping?  Maybe when several friends in my social networks talk up their recent purchases, maybe these influences will help buying decisions.  Businesses with a significant social media presence are counting on the social networking word of mouth advertising to expand their sales force.  Certainly the best sales, reviews, and referrals come from customers discussing items with other potential customers.

     

    Combining Social media with Social Media Marketing

    In addition to SoLoMo and Email, what happens when we combine the strengths of multiple social media marketing efforts together?  So do we have a SoSoLoMo marketing effort or something more exciting?  In a recent article in Social Media Examiner, some guidelines were given for driving more YouTube Views with Pinterest.  The article suggests that all our YouTube videos should be pinned on Pinterest. 

    Certainly building an audience in one social media network and cross linking to another social network will build new opportunities. However, businesses should not ignore the building mobile device market place when exploiting Social upon Social marketing efforts.  By itself the social crosslinking can be powerful, but what happens if one pulls a Foursquare into the mix, or other social, mobile location information.   Will the opportunities get more interesting- or just more convoluted?  The opportunities may depend on what market vertical your business is in, and whether mobile location can be exploited to build marketing excitement.

    Can the savvy business jump ahead of competition with high powered SoLoMo marketing efforts?  We certainly are running into more SoLoMo creative marketing efforts every day.  Don’t let your competition come up with all of the creative ideas, build some new ones into your next marketing effort- So Go So So Lo Mo!

     

    Mark Colestock, a digital marketing strategist at WSI DigNet, helping businesses with their online marketing needs.

    Digital Marketing Differences: What plays in Orange County doesn't work in Warsaw

    Last updated 1 year ago

    I’ve had the good fortune to train other digital marketing consultants around the world and I quickly learned that what works in the US, doesn’t play well in South Africa, or Columbia or in Amsterdam.

    I’ve been to a lot of countries, but never to Central Europe, so I asked my colleague Mateusz Wisla to weigh in on the subject of Internet Marketing in his region.  What I learned from his insightful article is that any brand looking to expand into another country might be served well by employing a local consultant as part of their team:

    3 things to consider when starting your Internet Marketing campaign in Poland and Central Europe 

    When I talk to my colleagues within WSI operating in other countries I am often surprised how different is the Internet Marketing landscape in Poland and other Central European countries from that present in US, Canada or Great Britain. Of course there are many marketing tactics that work all over the world, but if you want to promote your company successfully (both B2B and B2C) you must be aware of the key differences and aspects that need to be localized. Here I would like to name a few of them.

    But before that, I would like to share with you a few statistics to present how the Internet Marketing market is growing here in Poland. As you can see on the below graph we observe significant growth rate in budget spent on Internet -it shows you how significant this marketing channel is here. It is in line with the trend that is observed in almost every place in the world: Despite of the crisis, marketing budgets are moved to the online space and are growing.

    Always remember about cultural and language differences!

    This is truism but believe me, it happens all the time – companies want to implement the same approach towards every market they target, and you know what? It doesn’t work! Let me give you some example: when I was on one of my first WSI trainings in Toronto (back in 2010) I spotted Old Spice Commercial: The Man your man could smell Like for the first time – this was really great video. But I was shocked when after a year the Brand launched the same campaign in Poland (only text was translated). What do you think was the result? Complete failure – I think only marketers put some attention to the campaign, just to criticize it J Comparing to US or Canada, Poland is a homogeneous society – if you want to attract masses you must show something that is close to them. Moreover, we do not have Caribbean beaches in Poland and oysters are not a part of our day to day menu (at least not of the majority of society). For Old Spice even the translation sounded really weird – without this flow that we all liked in the English version.

    Ahh, translations. Effective marketing campaign requires great, convincing copy – but it means something totally different in each region. It is not just a matter of good translation; it is about the text that sounds right. In Central and Eastern Europe we are much more allergic on the texts, that are full of marketing incentives, call to actions – we found them too offensive and, as a result, we are repulsed  by them. The border is blurred – I know, but you have to be careful with that.

    Here you can find a link to the polish most popular MEM – we call it forfitter (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fFxdDCIAS6c)  - this is a video of Polish guy living in US who was feeding a alligator with a chicken. The language he uses is a mixture of polish and English – for us its hilarious J Here you can find other videos that were created after that (songs, covers of movies etc.): http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=forfiter . Do you find it funny? Now maybe you know better what I mean by cultural differences?

    One more thing that I would like to underline is the following: do not rely on automatic tools like Google translate if you are going international, especially outside English speaking world. Majority of those great technologies we use these days started in English speaking world and it really takes time till the quality of other language versions is similar.

    This brings me to the next point.

    Search Engines usage differs between countries – the whole SEO landscape is different

    In Poland more than 97% of all searches are done via Google. When we think about SEO or PPC we do not consider anything else here. Looking at the region this is almost always a rule. The exception are Czech Republic with Seznam and Russian speaking countries (Russia, Belarus, Ukraine etc.) with Yandex. The reason for that lies deep down in the past when Google was concentrating on English language and Latin alphabet. In Russia you have Cyrillic, in Czech Republic the Latin alphabet is pretty localized (42 characters) and Google was not doing a good job in presenting the relevant content.

    To be honest, Google algorithm is here a few generations behind, especially in terms of contextual content analysis. Also the localization of search results is not so strong here as in US. However, I do not want to go much into technical details in this post. From business point of view search engine optimization and pay-per-click campaigns work on the same basis (people looking for answers, products or services land on your website), but the processes and tools used to optimize the Internet presence are a bit different. So you cannot just copy-paste keywords and action plan from your local campaign when you enter the different market.

    Search Engines are still the fastest growing internet marketing segment. In the below chart you can find a few statistics about that.

    Search Engines usage differs between countries – the whole SEO landscape is different

    In Poland more than 97% of all searches are done via Google. When we think about SEO or PPC we do not consider anything else here. Looking at the region this is almost always a rule. The exception are Czech Republic with Seznam and Russian speaking countries (Russia, Belarus, Ukraine etc.) with Yandex. The reason for that lies deep down in the past when Google was concentrating on English language and Latin alphabet. In Russia you have Cyrillic, in Czech Republic the Latin alphabet is pretty localized (42 characters) and Google was not doing a good job in presenting the relevant content.

    To be honest, Google algorithm is here a few generations behind, especially in terms of contextual content analysis. Also the localization of search results is not so strong here as in US. However, I do not want to go much into technical details in this post. From business point of view search engine optimization and pay-per-click campaigns work on the same basis (people looking for answers, products or services land on your website), but the processes and tools used to optimize the Internet presence are a bit different. So you cannot just copy-paste keywords and action plan from your local campaign when you enter the different market.

    Search Engines are still the fastest growing internet marketing segment. In the below chart you can find a few statistics about that.

     

    Differences in marketing mix

    Ok, as the last point I would like to name several differences in the marketing methods and tools that are popular and effective here in Poland.  The fact is that we have already had a number of attempts from global leaders who tried to run business in Poland and it didn’t work for them. I would like to name two of them (significant ones):

    • eBay – this auction platform is almost not existing in Poland, we all use service called Allegro. Few years ago eBay tried to launch his product in Poland, but the market was already covered by Allegro and eBay didn’t find a way to offer a better value proposition.
    • Amazon – we are still waiting for opening a polish instance of this platform. Amazon.co.uk offers free delivery to Poland (it is quite popular among those buying English books, e-books etc.), but there are no polish products there, which is why this service didn’t get much attention here. The role of Amazon is played by local bookstore called Empik (which is polish version of Virgin) , but I think that there is a huge opportunity for Amazon in Poland

     

    When it comes to social media I must mention that Twitter is almost non-existent here in Poland and it is not because of the platform but due to fact that the whole idea of microblogging is not popular. Of course there are some users who use Twitter, but they are members of few industries like marketing who are early birds in almost any new technology. Take this into account when you plan your social media presence here. I could also name a few more services that are not so popular here: like Foursquare or ITunes.

    Luckily, like almost the whole world we use Facebook - really heavily (Facebook is one of the most popular services in Poland) – so at least here the principles for marketing in this medium are the same.

    Maybe you have some comments, questions ? I will try to answer the best way I can.

     

    About Mateusz Wisla

    Certified Internet Marketing Consultant, part of “We Simplify the Internet” since 2010, running a local office of WSI in Warsaw, Poland. Mateusz works with medium and big companies on development and implementation of their Internet Marketing strategies aimed at Lead Generation and Building Brand Awareness. Mateusz, fan of Web Analytics and conversion optimization specializes in international marketing projects helping companies to expand their international presence.

     

    pl.linkedin.com/in/mateuszwisla/

    Web Presence Optimization: it's not about Websites...it's about Web Presence

    Last updated 1 year ago

    If you don't dominate the search results for your own company name, you have some work to do.

    How do you dominate the search results for your own company name when your website can only show up one time? Simple, you have to show up for more than one website. The good news is they already exist.

    Face it, no company has just one website anymore, they have many websites. Those sites are their LinkedIn profile, their Facebook and Twitter accounts, external company blogs, review sites, Business directories, review sites likes Angie's List and Customer Lobby. Even other websites that mention your company by name can occupy valuable real estate under your name on the search results.

    Get Started Building Your Web Presence

    There are all sorts of opportunities to expand your company’s web presence...just take a look at the wide range of search results on the Kreative Webworks screenshots. Let's start with some the ones that you have the most control over... Your social profiles.

    http://www.kreativewebworks.com/web-presence-examples.html

    Step one is to create your standardized profile. You want to establish this upfront so that all your profiles are consistent so the search engines have a high degree of confidence that all those websites you are about to claim are actually yours, and you get full credit. Use your keywords appropriately in your description.

    Step two is to "Claim" all your Social Profiles. We use our "Claim You Brand" spread sheet to methodically go through all the top social networks, claim them and keep track of all the login credentials. This is the same tool we use for all our clients. Contact me and I'll be happy to share it with you.

    Step three is to go through each of your new web assets and fill out EVERYTHING. And I do mean everything. It's extremely important that everyone of your profiles is at 100% if you want those social channels and search engines to take you seriously. Most of them will have an indicator letting you know your percentage of completion and what's missing.

    HINT: Be prepared with pictures and videos to go along with your profile.

    Now comes the interesting...but time consuming part...actually doing something with your profile to drive it to the top of the search results. If you have a moderately unique company name and you do a good job of filling out your profile, you stand a chance of making a reasonable showing...perhaps not dominant, but certainly a hit and miss showing with some valuable real estate that you have control over.

    In most cases you are going to need to give it a push. Most people don't realize this, but many of the same factors that optimize a web page also work for social profiles:

    • Keyword rich content (including your company name)
    • Links from other web properties around the Internet
    • Updates
    • Traffic, comments, Likes, follows, etc.

    As you may have noticed on the screenshots of the search results for "Kreative Webworks" it's all about diversification. More content in more places means more customers.

    Mobile SEO… 3 steps to Outpace Your Competition in 2013

    Last updated 1 year ago

    Since Mobile devices are getting hotter ever hour as we move into 2013, should businesses take advantage of mobile devices in their websites? Does a business need to create a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) approach to leverage mobile in addition their regular website SEO? The answer to both questions is most definitely YES.

    One needs to start with a basic Mobile Device strategy, and then decide what other web phenomenon can be used to create enhanced Mobile SEO results. For example, by combining unique characteristics from Mobile, YouTube and Social Media- we may find new opportunity doors opening for search results, bringing even better results to businesses. This article describes 3 simple steps to enhance your website beyond mobile for a fresh look in 2013:

    1) Develop a Mobile Search Strategy,
    2) Add YouTube videos to your website and Mobile solution,
    3) Extend your social media footprint.

    Get even more content marketing results by combining Mobile SEO, YouTube SEO, and Social Media SEO efforts.

     

    Develop both Mobile Device & Mobile SEO Strategies

    Mobile users are searching for content that is mobile friendly. Business owners can step ahead of their competition early in 2013 by making updates to their websites ahead of their competition. With less than 10% of today’s websites that are mobile friendly, a business can definitely get ahead of competition by starting now with their own mobile solution. But beyond creating a mobile friendly website, what does one do to attract searches and get real customer results?

    That is where a basic Mobile SEO strategy is needed. A great article by Bryson Meunier- “Mobile SEO is Not a Myth…”, suggests Mobile SEO ideas for a mobile unique environment to enhance Mobile SEO performance.

    Knowing how search results are different between desktops and mobile creates a business advantage for mobile friendly websites. Google keeps making changes to search parameters as they try to enhance the searchers experience. Savvy business owners will need to keep one eye on Google changes, and another on their smart phone search results. Mobile SEO adjustments are not needed daily, but over a period of time, as analytical data provides the measured results for making strategic updates.

    Also knowing how Mobile SEO can take local SEO to a new level of interactivity can help some business verticals; particularly where the business needs to build its local market reach. Mobile smart phone users often commute and travel to different cities. As an example, a salesman or other traveler may be looking for a restaurant, gas station, or local entertainment spot- and these searches might be added to the base mobile devices living in a particular area. Being able to target searches from a local area gives businesses an ability to capture potential customers coming into an area- much different than targeting only local desktop searches.

    In addition to Mobile SEO, one might also investigate including Mobile Paid Search ads, with your Mobile SEO solution to enhance your search results even further. Because there are so few websites that have been converted to mobile friendly solutions, Mobile paid ads can give your mobile website a real advantage while your competition is playing catch up in 2013. Take advantage of the window of opportunity that Mobile paid ads can bring, before your competition recognizes the need to even have a mobile website.

     

    2: Add YouTube videos to your website and mobile solution

    YouTube is the second largest search engine next to Google this according to an article on 5 Essential Tips for Your YouTube Channel. Adding fresh new SEO relevant video content to your web solution can enhance your Mobile SEO results. Although YouTube is still building its SEO relevance, 2013 will be the year to plan to add quality video SEO content to your web solution. Make sure that your video content is also Mobile SEO friendly, which will further distinguish your web solution ahead of your competition. YouTube videos are playing a larger role in creating relevant, fresh, quality, entertaining content for SEO search engines to find. Combining mobile searches and video SEO opens up new opportunities for businesses to stay ahead of competition in search results.

    Not only does YouTube rate as a fresh new SEO source for your website, it also plays highly into search results for social media content. Although in some rating systems such as Nielsen, YouTube may not be considered as a social media entity.

    See SEO for YouTube- Best Practices to get a basic understanding of what steps a business needs to take with SEO practices for your YouTube Videos. It is not just a simple matter of uploading videos, but steps are required to enhance your video’s SEO search position. Consider producing your videos in High Definition quality, because this improves your YouTube rankings. Video tags are also very important part of building your YouTube SEO position.

     

    3: Extend your Social Media Footprint to enhance your Mobile solution

    Mobile Internet users are overtaking wired Internet users in the next couple years, but the shift is happening faster for Social Media, this according to an article by Hootsuite CEO, Ryan Holmes. Social, Local, and Mobile (SoLoMo) is a term people will be hearing more often in 2013. Social networks sharing location information from their mobile devices, is becoming integral part to some social media environments. Certainly Business to Consumer (B2C) retailers will find new opportunities in 2013 to provide innovative offerings to consumers through SoLoMo. When creative offerings become accepted as part of the social media mind set, then SoLoMo will become a standard for new business opportunities in 2013.

    Social Media is not just a capability for B2C, it also is starting to be more relevant in the business to business (B2B) market place as well. Turn the social media noise into music is a YouTube video about social media geared to a B2B scenario.

    Like most other website enhancements, Social media itself provides a significant stride forward in your web solution. However the real pizzazz for 2013 is to combine social media with your SEO approach.  See an article – SEO and social media get married, which discusses what happens when SEO and social media join forces to build a strategic approach to content marketing.

     

    Summarizing Mobile SEO and Beyond for 2013

    A mobile website solution is a great idea to enhance your website for 2013 and Mobile SEO should be a natural extension.  However, taking further content marketing steps to enhance your Mobile website solution with Social Media and YouTube videos will leave your competition wondering what happened to their website. And don’t forget to follow SEO best practices for each enhancement.

    1: Have a Basic Mobile Device website Strategy - enhanced with Mobile SEO

    2: Add YouTube Videos to your website solutions - enhanced with Video SEO

    3: Build a linking Social Media footprint - also enhanced with Social Media SEO best practices.

    Mark Colestock, a digital marketing strategist at WSI DigNet, helping businesses with their online marketing needs.

    When Google sneezes…I catch a cold

    Last updated 1 year ago

    There’s probably about a dozen other clichés marketing agencies can use to describe how the search engine giant plays the tune and we just dance to it (see, there’s another one).

    For years digital marketing firms have been playing cat and mouse games with Google. The factors that the search engines use to determine where a website should be ranked in the search results were just too easy to be manipulated by those of us who made a career of it. Some of us played by the rules (white hat SEO) and some of us “bent” the rules (black hate SEO).

    Search engine marketing is no longer about Websites; it’s about “Web Presence”. Search engines have decentralized the criterion they use to decide which Web pages rank where for what keywords.

    In my opinion you can no longer rely on classic SEO techniques alone to get your Google love. I recommend a total 360° multi-dimensional approach that addresses all of the elements that the search engines currently factor into their algorithms. Below is an overview of the various components that typically go into our strategy:

     

    Components:

    Content:
    At the end of the day, search engines look for the same thing that people look for…content that is related to what people are searching for at any given time. You have to optimize, produce and manage content that is not only designed for search engines, but is relevant to your target market.

    Keywords:
    You will have to do extensive keyword analysis to determine the optimum keywords to ensure success. The most popular keywords are not necessarily the best. We prefer to target “niche” keyword phrases that relate directly to your target market. Targeting multiple highly relevant phrases will allow you a better opportunity to obtain higher rankings across more keywords that are directed to people farther down the buying cycle. (As opposed to targeting fewer harder to obtain “general” phrases).

    HTML:
    The output of almost all Website platforms is HTML code. It is the basic building block of the Internet. Other code such as Java script or Flash is a barrier to search engines indexing your Website. You will need to ensure that your Website is built on a search engine friendly platform. Adobe’s Business Catalyst platform, Wordpress, and basic HTML are always good choices. There are plenty of others as well.

    Usability:
    A search engines' goal is to display the best “user experience” they can find. That means that the actual structure of the website is a major factor in determining where your website will be placed on the search result pages. Also consider how many clicks it takes for a visitor to get to any of your pages on your site. If it is more than 3…it’s too many. It’s annoying to your visitors, and search engines recognize that.

    Speed:
    People don’t wait more than a few seconds for your Website to render before leaving, and neither do search engines. Make sure that you use high-speed hosting and a site design that is not heavy with extraneous code which slows down the Website.

    Links:
    Search engines factor both internal and external links. Each Website, directory or social property that links to your site is considered a “vote” for your Website. Why else would someone link to your site unless you provided valuable information?  It is important to note, that not all links are created equal. Some incoming links are more valuable than others.

    Search engines also factor “Internal Linking Structure’ (pages on your site that link to each other). Linking unrelated pages can be detrimental to your efforts. However linking relevant pages strategically in a “silo” structure will increase what we call “link juice” and consolidate the relevancy of your keyword themes.

    Blog:
    Search engines love blogs because by their very nature blogs are updated frequently…and search engines like fresh relevant and original content. Blog posts are indexed relatively quickly and are treated as a Web page of information by the search engines. Search engines rank Web pages… not Websites. You will want to ensure that your blog posts are designed to rank for specific keywords, but not at the expense of your human visitors.

    Social Media:
    No longer just a buzzword, search engines factor what they call “Social Signals” that indicate that you are interacting with your target market (thus indicating that you are relevant). Aside from the obvious advantages of interacting directly with your consumers and driving traffic back to Your Website, best industry estimates are that Google factors between 9% - 14% of their search ranking algorithm based on social signals.

    Analytics:
    In order to make incremental improvements we must monitor and make incremental adjustments to certain KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) such as:

    • Bounce Rate
    • Average Time on site
    • Top entry pages
    • Top exit pages
    • Traffic by keyword
    • Etc.

    Reporting:
    Analytics must be distilled into a meaningful report that can be analyzed to show trends and progress without all the noise of the raw data. 

    Design:
    Search engines are concerned with the structural aspect of design, not necessary the aesthetic aspect. It is imperative to design the website around both usability standards and search engine preferences (which typically mimic human usability factors). Remember usability…

    These 11 factors are just the main ingredients that go into search engine optimization. They don’t even address other aspects of an entire Web Presence Optimization program that includes profiles and pages from LinkedIn, Facebook, twitter, and reviews on Google+, and Yelp and Citysearch, etc….

    At the end of the day, its Google’s world, I just live in it.

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