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Spring Clean Your Marketing Campaigns

Posted by Rachel McMullen on April 7, 2016 at 11:39 AM

Creating a marketing campaign is a lot of work. After months of research, A/B testing and seemingly endless promotion to get it up and running, it's reasonable to want to rest a little bit and reap the rewards of a campaign well executed. But don't get too comfortable. Marketing campaigns aren't just "set it and forget it"; they require continual maintenance to make sure you're always connecting with your base in meaningful ways and reaching as many new customers as possible. While you might not need a complete overhaul just yet, here's a spring cleaning checklist you can use to spruce up your campaigns as the last of the winter chill melts away.

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Topics: Social Media Marketing, Content Marketing, Interactive Design & Creative

Your Digital Presence Cheat Sheet

Posted by Quiana Wright on March 8, 2016 at 1:20 PM

In today's always-on, hyperconnected world, it is simply not enough just to have a digital presence. It requires almost no effort to just have a website and maybe a social media profile or two, but in order to really reach consumers, it is essential that you connect with them in as many ways as possible, using all of the tools at your disposal. Not sure where to start? Here's your digital presence checklist:

1. Do You Have a Responsive Website?

Google recently published a report that suggests that over two-thirds of websites are using responsive design — but Marketing Land suggests that they might be considering a skewed sample. No matter what the actual statistics are, the fact is that your business needs to be optimized for mobile. The Web is shifting more and more toward the mobile platform, and the fact is that businesses that don't adapt to this changing landscape now risk being left in the dust later.

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Topics: Responsive Design, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Content Marketing, Local Listings Management

Key Differences Between Content Marketing and Native Advertising

Posted by Quiana Wright & Chris Finan on March 2, 2016 at 1:34 PM

Though both content marketing and native advertising are useful components of an integrated marketing strategy, these two terms are often used interchangeably to describe the same thing. However, there are distinct differences between the two, and it's important that marketers understand how these concepts differ in order to use both of these tools as effectively as possible.

What Is Content Marketing?

Content marketing is defined by the Content Marketing Institute as "a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action." Content can be text, video, graphics or almost anything else that can be displayed on a screen, and it's used to reach consumers in an effort to drive organic pageviews and conversions. Content is usually hosted on a company's own website.

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Topics: Native Advertising, Content Marketing

2016 Digital Marketing Trends: 5 Predictions for the New Year

Posted by Joseph Naylor on February 17, 2016 at 9:51 AM

Digital marketing trends can be difficult to forecast day to day, let alone for an entire year. New platforms and companies are driven by the changing preferences of the continuing influx of new users. The risk of jumping onto what may be just a passing fad, however, is offset by the knowledge that failing to adapt your marketing tactics is never the strategy for customer retention. These five digital marketing trends will continue to dominate in 2016 and will be an important part of any marketing portfolio.

1. Content Marketing

Back in the day, brands merely posted a few coupons and engaged with any random audience, and then their content would practically share itself. Consumers today are savvier and more discerning than ever. Creating content with a focus on SEO (rather than actual human readers) can cause content fatigue, which makes it tough to attract, let alone convert, potential customers. Particularly when you consider the trends to follow, brands that will break through will be the ones that continue to find relevant ways to talk to their customers. KFC has done this with clever, viral videos, but it also works for smaller brands, like Intelligentsia Coffee.

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Topics: Video Advertising, Website Design & Development, Native Advertising, Content Marketing, Integrated Marketing

Improve Your Mobile Search Rank in 5 Easy Steps

Posted by Quiana Wright on January 20, 2016 at 1:29 PM

Google's recent announcement that mobile search accounts for more than half of search engine traffic around the world means that your website's level of "mobile-friendliness" will alter its mobile search ranking. According to reporting by Business News Daily, Google only required website owners to optimize for better viewing on smartphones and tablets prior to recent changes to their algorithm. Now, other factors, such as readability and mobile-friendly software, are being taken into consideration when it comes to ranking your site.

Knowing what that means for your website can be tricky. For a small business owner, Google's own checklist for building a mobile-search-friendly site can initially seem frustrating since some of its suggestions include costly solutions, such as building a new website from scratch or working with a developer.

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Topics: Responsive Design, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Mobile Optimization and Advertising, Content Marketing

Content Is King, and Lead Generation Is Its Loyal Army

Posted by Quiana Wright on December 23, 2015 at 10:28 AM

It comes in many forms, works on multiple channels and builds a digital footprint better than any other marketing strategy. There's no question: On the digital marketing front, content is king.

Though content is a flexible asset that can be used to target a wide range of business goals, many organizations use it as a tool to drive lead generation. It's not unusual for content's primary goal to be generating leads — and as long as consumers keep turning to the Internet to find solutions in the form of products and services, content will be a necessary tool.

If you're looking to wield content for lead generation — or to simply upgrade your current strategy — here are a few key ways to make that happen.

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Topics: Content Marketing

Content Management: Are You Doing It Right?

Posted by Quiana Wright on November 27, 2015 at 10:56 AM

By employing a content marketing strategy, you can build your brand, improve your search engine ranking and reach current and potential customers in a meaningful way. But, you'll need to do more than just type up a few blog posts every now and then if you want to achieve real, measurable results. In order for your marketing campaign to be as successful as possible, you need to have a solid content management system in place. Here are some tips on how to manage your content in an effective and efficient manner.

Establish an Editorial Process

According to Web Marketing Today, one of the most common content marketing mistakes that companies make is not having an editorial calendar. By creating and maintaining this type of content calendar, you can visualize your editorial process and organize your content in terms of what you want to publish, when you want to publish it and how you want to promote it. You can then use this calendar to see where you can make improvements to the process. For instance, if you currently publish pieces on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but are finding that you don't have enough editing time in between, you can make the necessary adjustments to your publishing schedule. By setting up this type of calendar, you can ensure that your content production process is as streamlined and organized as possible.
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Topics: Content Marketing

4 Content Marketing Strategy Mistakes You Could Be Making

Posted by Quiana Wright on November 18, 2015 at 9:49 AM

Your content marketing strategy is most likely time-consuming. Blogs can take hours to write, and the rewards of performance seem to come at a snail's pace. Nevertheless, the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) reports that 83 percent of B2B marketers have a content strategy in place; it's clearly important regardless of the brand.

While content marketing does take time, it's normal to worry that your efforts aren't paying off. In the meantime, check to see if your business is making any of these four common mistakes.

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Topics: Content Marketing

Native Advertising and Content Marketing for Health Care Companies

Posted by Quiana Wright on November 2, 2015 at 9:57 AM

For many people, the world of health care can be complex, confusing and maybe even a little frightening. But in today's online age, new opportunities exist for health care providers not only to reach out to potential new patients, but also to help them feel more comfortable. You can do this by engaging directly with them via content marketing and native advertising. These tools can be game changers — helping to form the backbone of a marketing strategy that will grow your practice in a lasting way.

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Topics: Native Advertising, Content Marketing, Healthcare

How to Make Small Business Saturday a Success

Posted by Joseph Naylor on October 29, 2015 at 11:25 AM

Small businesses often lament the fact that they're at a disadvantage against bigger brands, which not only have larger marketing budgets, but can afford to offer much lower prices. But local businesses still have their own attractions, including a focus on quality and a commitment to their communities.

Small Business Saturday has emerged as a smart means of raising awareness about the value of shopping local, as noted by Marketing Land. The event, which comes on the heels of Black Friday, encourages consumers to spend their money wisely with businesses that reinvest that money in their local communities. This national retail day depends on the entire small business industry to promote it for their mutual benefit. Local businesses need the support of their communities, and an annual day dedicated to this relationship can give businesses a big boost. Here are some effective digital strategies for raising awareness of the event and driving traffic to your stores on Small Business Saturday.

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Topics: Digital Marketing Strategy, Mobile Optimization and Advertising, Social Media Marketing, Content Marketing

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