the inbound-i blog: Inbound Marketing Information, Ideas & Intelligence

A Content Marketing Lesson from Jazz and the Superbowl

Posted by Ellie Becker on Mon, Feb 04, 2013 @ 09:02 AM



This weekend I experienced two live performances that made me think about why the communication in our content marketing should be direct, useful and, above all, personal.

The first performance was a jazz concert at the Nyack Library in Nyack, New York featuring the wonderful Brazilian trumpeter Claudio Roditi and two masters of Brazilian guitar, Roni Ben-Hur and Paul Meyers. The setting was the library's charming and intimate Carnegie Room, which seats maybe 150.

The two sets that comprised the evening were as much conversation with the audience as concert. For example, during the introductions the emcee had a memory lapse concerning the many top performers Roditi has played and recorded with. Audience members began to help, shouting out favorite collaborations.

I contributed singer Mark Murphy to the list. Roditi played on a marvelous album called Night Mood, the music of Brazilian composer Ivan Lins. When the players took the stage, Roditi asked, "Who just mentioned Mark Murphy? Last week I listened to the album I made with him. Hadn't heard it for years and man it was a good session!" Listen to a cut here with a great Roditi solo. docs/02 - Madalena.mp3

That was only the beginning of the musicians' connection with the audience. The entire evening was a conversation on many levels. The music was incredible and included well-known standards, as well as original compositions.

We also heard behind-the-scenes stories about life on the road with other jazz greats. We learned about Roditi's musical influencers and interests. There was fun and humor. The audience was fully engaged. When the call to action came before the intermission to buy CDs, dozens of hands went for wallets.

On Sunday evening Jeff and I watched the Super Bowl, both for the football and Beyonce's half-time show. Even though it was happening live, the game had the trappings of a recording. By the third time the sound-enhanced graphic of the SuperBowl trophy whooshed onto the screen between plays, I wanted to run into the kitchen and make popcorn to escape. But at the heart of the game was a rivalry of cities and brothers and the drama of a power outage caused by human error. Salvation.

Beyonce's performance was electric and overly produced, but her singing was authentic – quashing the criticism that she sang to a pre-recorded track in her far more human and emotional performance at the presidential inauguration two weeks before. According to reviews, the most human moment – Beyonce’s reunion with the members of her original group Destiny’s Child – was the crowd favorite, trumping pyrotechnics and special effects.

Oh…and let’s not forget the Super Bowl commercials. According to USA Today’s Ad Meter, the top five ads as voted by almost 8,000 viewers all used humanity and gentle humor to engage.

  • Budweiser – The tale of a man and the Clydesdale he raised from birth and their subsequent emotional reunion. (Watch above if you haven't seen it yet. Get a tissue first.) By the way the YouTube version includes a call to action for further engagement - Name the Baby Clydesdale.
  • Tide – Gentle humor when a football fan finds a ‘miracle salsa stain’ of Joe Montana on his football jersey which his wife, a Baltimore Ravens fan, washes out with Tide – ending media fame and fortune.
  • Chrysler Ram Trucks – Paul Harvey’s ode to the American farmer reprised in magnificent photography from the heartland.
  • Doritos – In Fashionista Daddy a father and his burly football friends play princess dress-up with his daughters in exchange for Doritos. Silly and heartwarming fun.
  • Jeep – A tribute to our servicemen and women fighting overseas.

I think you get the message by now. The most engaging formula for creating successful content is to connect authentically and personally. Share your business knowledge and expertise, your products and services. But do it with humanity. That’s what makes people want to buy from you.

What are your favorite content marketing take-aways from the Super Bowl? Thanks for reading and sharing in the comments. Please take home some Lead Generation Tips while you're here.

Lead Generation Tips

Topics: Inbound Marketing, E.R. Becker Company, Content Strategy, Content Marketing, Claudio Roditi, Beyonce, Super Bowl 2013

Inbound Advice: Collaboration Ain’t Always Pretty, But It's Beautiful!

Posted by Ellie Becker on Sun, Jan 20, 2013 @ 19:01 PM

Anyone who’s read my posts over the years knows I’m a huge fan of jazz – and often use it as a metaphor in discussing business and marketing issues. Playing jazz at a high level is all about successful collaboration. A set I heard last night at the well-known club Jazz Standard in Manhattan made me think about the nature of successful marketing collaboration, including a wonderful one I’m currently involved in.

Please invest a few minutes to read about the jazz experience that sets up the marketing story. You’ll pick up some usable ideas for how to collaborate to make your marketing much better – and learn a bit about America’s Music in the 21st century as a bonus.

The set at Jazz Standard was a ‘big band’ gig led by drummer Jeff “Tain” Watts’. He’s a collaborator of Wynton Marsalis, a composer of original music and is married to horn player and arranger Laura Kahle who created the arrangements – or charts, in jazz parlance – for last night’s performance. The set was spectacular to me for two reasons:

  1. It took place in an extremely intimate setting. The tiny stage is right up close and personal to the audience and was packed with about 15 musicians. We had to move our table so that the first row of players could squeeze into position. We literally felt part of the band. This happens rarely.
  2. Every player was a leader and star in his or her own right and it was the first time they’d all played together. If you’re not familiar with jazz and its top artists, just Google these names from the lineup and you’ll have a clue about the magnitude of that performance:

Jeff “Tain” Watts, drums; Lew Soloff, trumpet; Frank Lacy and Conrad Herwig, trombones; Marcus Strickland, Yosvany Terry, Jacam Manricks, Claire Daly, saxophones; Don Byron, clarinets; Paul Bollenbeck, guitar; Chris Smith, stand up bass; and our good friend David Budway, piano.

There was well-earned ego in evidence to be sure. For example, Frank Lacy’s trombone slide almost clocked Don Byron sitting in front of him. Byron shot a dark look and made an exaggerated effort to get out of Lacy’s way. But ego was put aside in favor of their incredible professional chops and their overarching dedication to creativity and delivering to the audience a performance worthy of the collaborative tradition of their art form. Plus they know and like each other and so there was delightful camaraderie, too.

The delivery was messy and delicious like the Chipotle chicken wings and collared greens I feasted on prior to the show. No pristine bandstand with logo-laden music stands and matching band jackets. Each musician brought individual style, talent and experience to the stage and gave us an unforgettable hour of incredible music, fun, humor and the sense that we were part of something unique in that moment.

Now, as an example of how collaboration is critical to successful marketing today, let me tell you about the greatly rewarding collaboration I’m involved in with Rhonda Hurwitz of HMR Marketing Solutions.Ellie and Rhonda collaborators

She and I have known each other for several years and transitioned in tandem from traditional marketing and PR to inbound marketing.

We both have family background in marketing. We come from different experience. I have been on the agency/consultant side. Rhonda comes from the corporate side and is now a consultant. She hired vendors like me. I sold to and served clients like her. Our combined experience is pretty powerful in putting together strategic plans and implementing them for clients.

We really respect each other. I think she’s incredibly smart and an exceptionally good writer. (“Takes one to know one,” I say with zero humility.) We also trust each other. We see each other as equals and, in certain respects, we see each other as more than equal.

That said, we are messy like that band last night. As we engage in the work of helping our shared clients succeed, it’s not always pretty. We butt heads over ideas. But neither of us is bull-headed. We try to confine our brainstorm interactions to our private conversations, but sometimes they spill over into discussion with other collaborators and even the clients.

We can’t help it. We’re both passionate about reaching our clients’ goals within the realities of running our businesses. So if you’re a client and at some point it seems that we’re not on the same page, take heart. We are. We’re on your page and will risk shaking things up with each other to help you succeed.

Like the jazz guys last night, this takes a certain courage. It’s uncomfortable in the contentious moments, my friends. But because we trust and respect, we synthesize and process. I give ground, Rhonda gives ground. Or when neither of us can give ground, we keep generating more ideas and find something that we both like better than our initial concepts. It’s rewarding to us and it’s really important to the results we get for our clients.

We also plan for continuous improvement like the band did last night. At the end of the last number of their set, someone said – a la Count Basie – “One more time!” And then they did another take on the ending of the tune. After that, they did it one more time again.

When we asked one of the musicians about it later, he said, “We haven’t played together before. And since you guys were having such a good time, we figured you wouldn't mind if we tried to make it better for the next set!

The video at the top of the post is Jeff “Tain” Watts with the Danish Radio Big Band, with which he collaborates. You’ll get a flavor of last night’s music.

The image of the two little superheroes is Rhonda’s collaborative contribution to this post. She received it in an email from eloqua.com and thinks it’s hysterical! I agree. Especially since she made it funnier by tagging it!! Not sure who to credit for the image. If it’s yours please give me the appropriate attribution or let me know the cost of licensing it for this post.

Would you share your collaboration success stories in the comments? Thanks!

If your appetite is whetted for more inbound marketing info take advantage of this complimentary content download and subscribe to the blog for automatic delivery of future inbound-i posts to your inbox.

Click me

Topics: Inbound Marketing, Ellie Becker, E.R. Becker Company, Jazz, Inbound Advice, Collaboration, Jeff Tain Watts

How Inbound Marketing with HubSpot is Like Time-Lapse Photography

Posted by Ellie Becker on Mon, Jan 14, 2013 @ 18:01 PM

 

Last week I was doing a demo of Hubspot for the marketing team of a former PR client. During our meeting, I had an experience that I'd like to share with you. HubSpot, for those new to the inbound-i blog, is the all-in-one inbound marketing software I use for E.R. Becker Company and re-sell to other businesses.

Let me set the stage with some background. When you log in to HubSpot, you land on a dashboard that lets you know how you're doing with your inbound marketing efforts. Two key measurements featured on the dashboard are website traffic and number of leads generated from that traffic.

When we started the demo, my traffic count was 90 visits so far this month - up 85% over the same date last month.  (Yes, I admit that I fell behind in my blogging over the holidays.) It was early in the month and I hadn't yet converted any traffic to leads.

I had published a blog post the evening before and publicized it automatically in HubSpot to all of my social networks and to select LinkedIn groups. The blog post was optimized for two of my important keywords and had a call-to-action (CTA) at the end, inviting readers to download a social marketing eBook, in exchange for which they would leave me their contact information.

As I demonstrated the many features of HubSpot, I spoke to the marketing team about the importance of blogging, SEO and social media to driving traffic. I showed the team how driving targeted traffic to landing pages and providing useful content offers through strategically placed CTAs is the path to generating leads.

The demo took about 30 minutes and in Q&A, one of the team members asked if we could go back to the dashboard. We did.

"Wow! You already have 30 more visitors!" someone shouted out. "Look! You have a lead, too!"

Sure enough, the traffic count was up to 120 and one of the new visitors had downloaded the social media eBook, converting from a visitor to a lead. It reminded me of a piece of time-lapse photography I've seen showing the building of a skyscraper condensed from years to a few minutes.

While inbound marketing results take time to build, it's motivating to see the growth before your very eyes. After this dramatic end to my demonstration, I told the group the following:

When I was providing PR services to your organization, even though we got great results, I could not and would not ever guarantee those results. In PR we work to present your information in a way that earns a media outlet's valuable space for editorial coverage. But we don't own the space and can't give it away.

With inbound marketing I WILL guarantee you that if you blog regularly in the online space that you own, sharing useful information based on your expertise, if you publicize your posts in social media and optimize the content for search engines, you WILL grow your traffic. If you provide further remarkable content and CTAs, you WILL convert traffic to leads. If you analyze your results with software like HubSpot or Google Analytics, you WILL be able to see the growth of your marketing skyscraper as it builds steadily toward success!

As a consultant, it feels great to offer a process that makes me feel comfortable guaranteeing success! If you've experienced your own inbound marketing time-lapse moment, thank you for sharing in the comments.

Learn more about marketing with HubSpot by clicking the CTA button below and if you have 2-an-a-half minutes, enjoy watching the YouTube video at the top of this post depicting the two years of construction of the Denver Spire condensed via time-lapse photography.

Click me

 

Topics: Inbound Marketing, E.R. Becker Company, Lead Generation, HubSpot

Inbound Advice: Don't Run Away From "Home"

Posted by Ellie Becker on Wed, Aug 01, 2012 @ 21:08 PM

Keep Home in Navigation

Somehow a trend has developed that threatens website user experience. Mess up a visitor’s ability to easily navigate your site and you can rest assured that it’s costing you business.

What’s the trend? “Home” is disappearing from navigation bars. I suspect that this is the result of a move to horizontal navigation – across the top of the Web page. Horizontal navigation is limited. So developers are trying to find space to accommodate more categories on the nav bar.

What they’ve decided to ditch is a navigation tab for “Home”. On many sites Home has been replaced by a link from the company logo. This is confusing to many visitors who are not mouse-ing around a page looking for what they can click on.

Most visitors are looking for the text, the words, the links that will take them where they want to go.

What's my inbound advice? Even though I regularly counsel clients not to be Home Page-centric – to recognize that if their site is properly optimized, visitors may enter the site from any page. But they also shouldn't run away from home.

The home page is still the spot on a website where there’s an overview. It’s where key messages are introduced and where look and feel and brand identity are the strongest. Home is still the gateway to the company and people want to see Home pages. Home is the hub of the site from where you can navigate everywhere (one hopes).

Don’t give up a Home tab in deference to design and space issues. Challenge your web developer to come up with something less restrictive than a main navigation across the top of the page.

I’m very resolute on this topic, having engaged numbers of web searchers on the topic. When asked how they would get to the home page on a site where Home is not in the navigation, most have given up trying to figure it out in exasperation.

Why set up your visitors for frustration? Why design a higher bounce rate into your site? Make it easy for visitors to get everywhere on your site – especially to your Home sweet Home.

While you're here, take advantage of a free opportunity to learn more about Inbound Marketing.

Click me

 

Image is from the flickr photostream of Diana Parkhouse under Creative Commons license.

Topics: Inbound Marketing, Online Marketing, Website Development, E.R. Becker Company, Web design, User Experience

Future of SEO: Three Areas of Impact

Posted by Ellie Becker on Wed, Jun 27, 2012 @ 12:06 PM

Future of SEO is NowBecause of changes to Google's approach to search, some are beginning to question the future role of SEO in inbound marketing. Google is beginning to link search results it delivers to the social media behavior and browsing history of the searcher. This is one result of Google's foray into social media with Google+.

In the future, which in a limited way is now, what comes up on page one of search results will be different for you than it is for me. This puts the notion of high search engine rankings into question. Why bother with SEO if we no longer care about page one? But we should care. It just requires a shift in how we get there. Here are the three key areas that will be important to successful SEO in the future.

1. Keyword Research - What continues to be critical about the activities involved in SEO is keyword research - regardless of how search engines decide to parcel out results. The reason? Key word research gives us true insight to our buyer personae - our key audiences.

It's critical to success that we understand the words our prospects use to search for products and services like ours. I can bet you that the words they use are a far cry from the words we use in our carefully constructed website copy.

2. Social Media Context -- Where we need to shift is to become much more aware of where our prospects are engaged in social media. In addition to knowing where they spend time and effort engaging online, we must also become more engaged ourselves. Our associations with key audiences, our interconnectedness with their communities will influence our being presented to them on page one query results.

3. Great Content -- I agree with some online marketing experts that the most important inbound marketing component will continue to be creating great content. Keyword research helps assure that the content will appeal to the intended audience and will include language that resonates with them. Social networks assure effective targeting and delivery of our messages.

But ultimately, it’s our level of creativity, professional knowledge and awareness of our audiences’ needs that will contribute to producing content that moves to the top of search results. Such content will not only attract search engines, but will move people to action by showcasing our capabilities to provide the products and services being sought.

 

Click me

 

The image is from the flickr photostream of Aurelian S  under Creative Commons license.

Topics: E.R. Becker Company, SEO, Social Media, Google+, Keyword Research, Google+, Content

How to Improve SEO: Blog Your Keywords

Posted by Ellie Becker on Sun, May 06, 2012 @ 12:05 PM

My last post was described as the final in a 'How to Improve SEO' series. Not quite so, as the title of this post will attest. I began writing these posts primarily because I'm working with so many clients lately to add optimization to their sites, fix sites with poorly selected search terms and to improve usability. There's so much misinformation or downright lack of information about SEO that I felt it was high time to address it in the blog. How to Improve SEO

There was another reason for the series tied to my own marketing. Although I do alot of SEO work and have been quite successful in getting my clients ranking on page one for important keywords, in my own search engine rankings, I was absolutely nowhere to be found for search terms related to SEO.

Every piece of content we add to our sites is an opportunity to optimize and rank for another keyword. I use my own marketing as lab and role model for what I teach my clients so I decided it would be a good experiment to go from 'off the radar screen' to high ranking for the term 'How to Improve SEO'.

My research showed that the term in "phrase match" gets 440 searches monthly in the U.S. Anyone looking to improve SEO is an excellent prospect for me and I don't need more than a handful of new clients to reach my revenue objectives - so it was a good choice for my business. (Business strategy and objectives is always the place to start in making marketing decisions.)

I began the series of blog posts optimized for 'How to Improve SEO' on March 12th. After publishing them, I publicized them with a link on social media - Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn (including about 15 LinkedIn Groups) and - most important - Google+. I believe that Google+ is a lynchpin in successful SEO strategies because when I publicize on G+ my posts are indexed by Google within 48 hours. I know this because I maintain a Google Alert on my website url. When I get an alert about a new post, it means that it's been indexed.

On the morning of May 3rd, I checked my ranking for 'How to Improve SEO' for the first time since starting the series and - I had position 64! This put me on about page 5 or 6. Later that morning, I received a Google Alert on the latest post published a couple of days before. When I checked my ranking again later that evening I found that I'd moved up to position 26!! About page 2 or 3.

By the way - I find my rankings right in my HubSpot software along with all other manner of measurement and analytics. The chart shown above from my HubSpot  Keywords tool shows you exactly when my ranking for ‘How to Improve SEO’ started to shoot up – a fast 5 weeks after the first post of the series.

The results of this experiment led me to share the story as a personal case study in this additional post while, at the same time, taking the opportunity to move to Page 1 by blogging once more on the search term. I'll let you know what happens. This inbound marketing stuff really works, dear readers. Why wouldn't you want to do something that's proven to work?

While you're here, learn 20 more reasons why you should use Inbound Marketing.

Click me

Topics: HubSpot Tips, Inbound Marketing, Inbound Marketing Strategy, E.R. Becker Company, SEO, Google+

Improve SEO by Improving Website Usability

Posted by Ellie Becker on Sun, Apr 29, 2012 @ 19:04 PM

This is the last in the current SEO series on the inbound-i blog - about usability. And I want to leave you with one thought.

Please, please stop focusing on your home page.  If you really want to have an SEO strategy, then you have to look at every page, every blog post, every piece of content you post on your website as an opportunity to come up on page one of Google search results for a different search term.

As long as you’re stuck on creating the perfect home page, you’re delaying putting focus where it should be: attracting diverse visitors to your website via whichever access point is most relevant to them. For many or most prospects, it will not be your home page.SEO- Help visitors find results

The home page by definition is a hodge-podge. Yes. Go for some broader, harder to rank for search terms for your home page. You’d might as well. Most people who reach your home page already know you and have plugged your url into a search field. If they land there by chance or mistake, they won’t find what they’re looking for and will bounce off.

But to really generate leads – attracting those who don’t know you yet, but are searching for services/products like yours -- build content for specific offerings and optimize those content pages to attract more targeted search.

When someone hits your home page, they will likely see a diversity of messages and offerings. Try to make one visible block of content a validation that the visitor is in the right place to find info in your field. Let them know that generally they’re in the right place. And let search engines know, too, using meta data and other signals that we’ve discussed in earlier posts.

Across the board, make navigation consistent throughout your website so that visitors don’t have to relearn it on every page. We’re working on a site now where certain important information – how about the blog – is only accessible from the home page. We’re optimizing the site so that visitors who can benefit from info on the blog will enter from multiple places on the site. So we’re putting the blog in the main navigation bar.

In explaining why website navigation must be consistent throughout the site, my esteemed colleague Bernadette Nelson at Studio-B Visual Communication (www.studiob-ct.com) always tells clients, “What would happen if every time you got into your car, the controls were in a different spot?” The same holds true for how visitors navigate around your website. Don’t make them learn something new on every page, or they’ll go somewhere else.

Here’s the key takeaways on usability from SEOMoz, a highly authoritative voice on the subject:

The search engines are in a constant quest to improve their results by providing the "best" possible results. While "best" is subjective, the engines have a very good idea of the kinds of pages and sites that satisfy their searchers. Generally, these sites have several traits in common:

  • Easy to use, navigate, and understand
  • Provide direct, actionable information relevant to the query
  • Professionally designed and accessible to modern browsers
  • Deliver high quality, legitimate, credible content

 Help people buy and you’ll get found by search engines!!

And if you're hungry for more Inbound Marketing information, download this fact sheet.

 Click me

 

The Home Page Hodge Podge image is from the Flickr photostream of DanielaMeleo under Creative Commons license.

Topics: Inbound Marketing Strategy, E.R. Becker Company, SEO, SEOMoz

Inbound Marketing Advice: Improve SEO for Competitive Advantage

Posted by Ellie Becker on Mon, Mar 12, 2012 @ 18:03 PM

Lately we’ve taken on some client engagements that underscore an important fact: If you want to use your online presence to improve your competitive advantage, then improve SEO! In my opinion, developing a search engine optimization (SEO) strategy is one of the easiest ways today to leapfrog your competitors. Improve SEO for Competitive Advantage

In each of these client projects we’ve found that they have:

  • Spent considerable time and budget on their branding and on their websites.
  • Created the compelling products or services needed to compete well and are – or can be – industry leaders.
  • Not optimized their web pages for search engines.

The bad news? Their websites are not coming up in search engine results pages (SERPs) for many of their important keywords.

The good news? Neither are their competitors’ sites!!

There are a number of elements to successfully ranking high in search results. The first place to start is right on your website with on-page SEO. We’ll discuss other elements of successful SEO in later blog posts.

When we work with clients to improve their SEO, we look at competitors’ sites to learn what keywords they may be using and how well they rank in search engine results for important industry search terms. We have seen time and again that within entire industry top tiers, few, if any, are optimizing. Or they’re not up to speed on the latest best practices.

Here’s a quick test to see if you have an opportunity to leapfrog your main competitor using SEO.

Open up your website to the home page and look at your title bar. That’s the bar all the way at the top of your web browser. If it says: Your Company Name – Home, you have SEO work to do.

Now open your top competitor’s home page and see what’s at the top. If it has Their Company Name – Home, or just Home in the title bar, you have a huge opportunity to leapfrog this competitor in search results. If the competitor’s title bar begins with an industry key word or two, maybe their town or state next, and their company name last, you’ll have to implement SEO to catch up before you can play leapfrog.

Even if you’ve optimized your site in the past, the rules keep changing as search engines improve their search processes – called algorithms – to improve results for users. So spiffing up your SEO is an ongoing inbound marketing activity.

In future posts we’ll explore other elements of SEO including:

  • Keyword Research
  • Link Building
  • Usability, Visitor Experience and Content

 

In the meantime, to learn more about Inbound Marketing, including why you should consider a Content Management System like HubSpot, download your free fact sheet:

20 Reasons You Should Take Control of Your Website Using HubSpot.

Click me

 

The image is from the Flickr photostream of Danard Vincente under Creative Commons license.

 

Topics: Inbound Marketing, E.R. Becker Company, SEO, the inbound-i blog, Online Marketing Strategy, Google+

Ads and Graphics vs Content: Google Says Content Wins

Posted by Ellie Becker on Thu, Feb 23, 2012 @ 21:02 PM

Google - Content vs GraphicsHere’s the latest message from Google: If you want to rank well in search results, don’t create barriers of graphics and ads between the top of your web page and your content.

In an effort to get searchers to what they’re looking for, Google has changed its algorithm to assess how difficult you’re making it for them to get there.

The algorithm change is in response to users’ complaints that they land on a page and can’t find what they want. Whether they’re obscured from the desired information by lots of ads, or because the page has tons of graphics you have to scroll past to get to the info doesn’t really matter.

If your graphics are obscuring useful information, you’re not going to rank well in search engine results. In other words, you won’t get found.

Regularly I’m doing research for clients to determine how they can leap frog their competition. Regularly I’m seeing pages that are totally graphics and the little information that exists is contained in a graphical image that can’t necessarily be read by search engines. More times than not these images don’t contain alt tags – the source code that tells Google what an image is about (Google doesn’t recognize images – only text.)

Part of what Google is focused on is what appears ‘above the fold’ and what appears ‘below the fold’. This language reverts to newspaper jargon. If you take the New York Times and fold it midway between top of page and bottom of page, everything in the top half is ‘above the fold’.  The bottom half is ‘below the fold’. In print newspapers, the most important stories were closest to the top of the page, heralded by headlines that explained what the story was about – and why it was important to the reader.

Google takes a similar approach. It wants the info that tells what a page is about at the top. If the page is divided into more than one column, Google wants a dominant column with a keyword laden headline that establishes the informational focus of the page.

Best is to put the key concepts of the page across the top – above the fold -- and other info below the fold. The ‘below the fold’ info can be divided into columns and it’s great if you can optimize a below the fold column for a keyword.

Given Google’s new interest in page design, it’s imperative for graphic design and SEO to coordinate and collaborate. This may take some doing, but it’s evidence of how Web 2.0 is compelling us to break down marketing silos.

 

Click me

 

Image credit: Illustrationpages.com

Topics: E.R. Becker Company, SEO, Google+, Google Algorithm, Web design, Graphic Design

Online Marketing Strategy: “Why To” vs “How To”

Posted by Ellie Becker on Mon, Feb 06, 2012 @ 21:02 PM

Each day I read through a couple of dozen blogs and marketing newsletters to keep up on what’s happening in online/inbound marketing. Most of those articles are ‘How To’s’ about any number of digital tools and techniques. They’re important because when we decide to use a tool for solving a problem it’s good to know what to do.Strategy (Why To) vs Tactics (How To)

Where my eyes, ears and brain cells perk up more, though, is when I read something that explains ‘Why’ I or my clients should consider doing something in Inbound marketing.

The roadblocks that emerge when I speak to clients and potential clients about Inbound Marketing is that they get stuck on the ‘How To’. I will venture to speculate that the preoccupation with ‘How To’ is a way to avoid focusing on ‘Why’ doing it is or is not a good idea.

It’s the battle between Tactics (How To) and Strategy (Why To).

If there’s a great reason, ‘Why’, we can figure out, ‘How’.

It doesn’t work so well the other way around. You can eat, sleep and breathe the ‘How To’. But if there’s no reason ‘Why To’, the efforts are a complete waste of time and dollars.

Hire a strategist first. They’re a lot harder to find. Once you know what you want to do and ‘Why’ you should do it, there’s no end of tacticians who can show you ‘How To.’

 Learn much more about Inbound Marketing Strategy and Tactics. Download your Free eBook.

Click me

 

Graphic is from the Flickr photostream of docbaty under Creative Commons license.

Topics: Inbound Marketing, Online Marketing, Ellie Becker, Inbound Marketing Strategy, E.R. Becker Company, the inbound-i blog, Online Marketing Strategy

Subscribe via E-mail

Follow Me

Latest Posts