Posts Tagged ‘SocialOomph’

New Breed of Web Metrics Can Help Marketing Executives Make Better Decisions

Monday, November 19th, 2012

As online marketing processes have evolved, the number and sophistication of software tools to support specific functions has exploded. Every discipline within marketing and PR has its own tools, among them:

Most Web Marketing Tools are TacticalContent development: CMS tools (WordPress, Joomla, HubSpot, 100s of others), Adobe CS, tools for creating infographics, etc.

SEO: backlink tools (Backlink Watch, SEOmoz, Majestic), keyword research tools, page optimization tools, SEO plugins.

Social media: social media monitoring (Radian6, Sysomos, SM2), social media management (HootSuite, SocialOomph, Buffer), Twitter tools, etc.

Web analytics: Omniture, WebTrends, Google Analytics, Clicky, and more.

All are very helpful, even essential, but most are designed for practitioners, that is: they help a specialist in a particular discipline do his or her job more effectively. Not only are they tactical, each focuses on supporting one functional silo or another. Not surprising, since this is how digital marketing is managed today—as a set of largely disconnected specialties. So much so, companies utilize different tools, resources, and in some cases, even different agencies to manage web visibility for brand, SEO, social media, PR, and paid advertising.

And of course, search has evolved—it’s no longer just 10 blue links. Today, web presence goes way beyond a company’s website. News and social links are as vital as are other points of visibility. What’s missing is the larger strategic picture needed for top-level decision-making and for managing digital marketing and PR in a coordinated manner. We’re all missing this because there aren’t tools to help us do it. Or are there?

A “Eureka” Moment

A couple of weeks ago, we blogged about the web presence optimization (WPO) framework. This model (evolved from a 2010 post) came about from KC Associates’ (KCA) client consulting projects. Operating as a cross-functional team, each consultant knew that a framework for optimization is useless unless there’s a way to track and measure gaiting factors that can be adjusted in order to move the optimization needle. So the group took a long, hard look at the tactical tools each consultant uses with a more creative mind of how they might be repurposed for WPO.

For example, SEO backlink tools can provide detailed lists of the precise backlinks to a competitor’s website. This can be quite valuable to an SEO consultant, but it’s mind-numbing overkill for a VP of marketing.

However, a graphical comparison of the type and quantity of backlinks pointing to the firm’s website and the sites of close competitors may be very enlightening (e.g., discovering that competitor A has twice as many media links and three times as many social links pointing to them)—particularly if these measures have changed significantly in a short period of time.

This simple change in thinking was truly eye-opening.

Necessity is the Mother of Invention

First and foremost, the WPO framework provides the strategic and structural approach to the unified management of web visibility. And WPO metrics that support this framework provide the critical measurement necessary to enable the overall coordination of these disciplines to improve presence optimization and performance.

The set of 100+ WPO metrics that the group developed for KCA clients is driven by data collected by a host of off-the-shelf tools as well as some custom developed sources. As a collection, the attributes of these metrics differ from what most other tracking and measurement tools are set up to provide in six distinct ways:

  • • Focus on management, not execution. WPO metrics are designed to support management decision-making (e.g., where should we devote more resources) rather than tweaks to specific tactics. Put another way, they are about the “what” rather than the “how.”
  • • Provide a unified view of results. They provide leaders and team members with an overall picture of press (media outlets), social, website (organic search), industry (e.g. associations, research organizations) and paid web presence. The tactical tools available tend to focus on one or two of these areas.
  • • Include competitor metrics. An organization’s digital marketing results don’t exist in a vacuum; it’s critical to be able to view results in the context of competitive activities. Competitive benchmarking is vital to developing strategy and allocating resources.
  • • Reflect the value of owned, earned and paid presence, not just the company website. What customers, analysts, journalists, bloggers, and others have to say about you is sometimes more important than your own content. WPO metrics show the value of all of your points of web presence, whether it’s your content or something produced by a third party.
  • • Are actionable and NOT “everything but kitchen sink.” Too many tools try to report every possible detail, rather than just what’s important. The result is data overload and analysis paralysis. It’s confusing and too much to absorb, and therefore doesn’t get acted upon. Best-practice WPO metrics focus only on measures that support concrete action.
  • • Identify clear priorities. While WPO metrics cover a lot of ground, not every measure matters all the time. For example, if your media share-of-voice remains about the same from one month to the next, but your AdWords conversion rate drops by half, WPO metrics focus on the latter result.

WPO metrics won’t replace tactical, execution-level tools, but they will help guide decisions about which functional tools to use and how to coordinate the tasks of different disciplines for a larger purpose. They fill a critical gap by giving marketing executives, and everyone on digital marketing and PR teams, a unified view of web presence that reflects a more integrated optimization effort.

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How to Suck at Twitter (And Still Appear Successful)

Sunday, December 20th, 2009

This post was originally published on the WebMarketCentral blog in December 2009.

There are a lot of great b2b marketers and social media contributors worth following on Twitter, like Ardath Albee, Mark Schaefer, Eric Fletcher, Jennifer Kane and Rob Rose to name just a few. These are people who definitely do not suck at Twitter. They are intelligent, discerning, helpful and social. All have respectable, even impressive, but not gargantuan numbers of followers.

But there is a different group of tweeters out there as well, a group whose members often have immense numbers of followers, though they seem to add little value, socially or intellectually. Yet these individuals often have immense numbers of followers—20,00, 30,00, even 50,ooo or more. They aren’t celebrities. How do they do it? After careful observation and analysis of the practices of these twerks, here are some of the secrets of those who suck at Twitter, yet appear highly successful.

Twitter Name

Never use your real name. It’s boring (plus it makes it too easy for the feds to track you down). Incorporate your spammy promise into your name, using something like @BigMoneyOnline. You can even cleverly insert special characters to create a handle like @WebCa$hMachine.

Twitter Bio

Leave it blank. Just because this is social media doesn’t mean you have actually share anything about yourself. Besides, leaving your bio blank adds an air of mystery!

If you feel compelled to put something there, make it as spammy and sales-y as possible. Here’s an example of an actual bio, only slightly retouched to protect the identity:

MLM, Internet Marketing, Cashflow, Twitter Automation. Just click the link above! = 40,000+ followers

(Are you barfing yet?)

Web Link

Point your link to an obnoxious “buy now” page. Make sure it is filled with lots of CAPITAL LETTERS and exclamation points!!! Be sure to include terms like “exclusive,” “limited time offer,” “secret,” and “free bonuses.” Hit your visitors hard. Remember, your goal is to convince the gullible that they can have better health, lose weight, or best of all, make big money working from home, without any real effort on their part.

Twitter Avatar

Don’t use your real face (again, makes it too easy for the authorities). The default Twitter bird is always a safe choice. Or, get creative and reflect the junk you’re trying to sell: use dollar signs, a sexy man/woman photo, or a cleavage shot.

Another tactic is to keep people guessing; if your “real” name is John, use a female photo, and use a male underwear model if it’s something like “Christine.”

Twitter Background

Again, make sure this sells your “promise.” Popular options include piles of cash, skinny models, fancy cars, yachts, or a photo of someone who looks kind of like you standing in front of some one else’s mansion.

Okay, that covers all of the header and background considerations, so let’s see how that all works together. Here’s an actual example from someone who sucks at Twitter, with only identifying information obscured:

Note the complete lack of a web link or bio and the use of the default Twitter background and avatar. Yet with only 3 tweets (all of which were sales pitches with a link back to the account owner’s spammy website), this person has almost 50,000 followers! How do they do it? Two more areas to get right:

Automate Everything

Hey, just because they call it “social” media doesn’t mean you have to actually interact with anyone, right? Use a tool like SocialOomph to create automated tweets, so you don’t have to actually read what all those other boring people are tweeting. Create an automated message to welcome new followers, because after all, people love getting spammy, untargeted, impersonal DMs. Make it blatantly self-promotional, somelike “Thanks for following. I’d love to help you! Buy my crap at [link].”

There are also automated tools to help you find new followers. They randomly follow a whole bunch of the people, then as soon as those folks follow you back, the tools automatically unfollow them and start over with a new group. Sure, you’ll pick mostly spam bots and low-activity accounts, but you’re bound to catch a few suckers in there as well! Especially with your impressively large number of followers.

Finally, there are your tweets themselves. There are several possible strategies here. One is to tweet nothing at all—remain mysterious! But that won’t help you sell your garbage, so a second, better approach is to tweet the same spammy sales message over and over.

Note how this account combines several of the recommendations above. The default background and avatar are used, there’s no bio or link, the tweets are no more than broadcast sales messages, and, as the tweet times indicate, the tweets are automated:

Almost 1,000 followers—not bad! Many more-socially-active small businesses haven’t hit that threshold yet.

A final tweet strategy is to mix slight variations of your pushy sales message with banal, tired and trite quotes from people like Zig Ziglar and Albert Einstein. I see this approach employed quite frequently. Is there a website out there somewhere, maybe called, that collects these for people?

Whatever you do, don’t engage in conversations. That’s time wasted that could be spent fleecing the ignorant! And don’t ever retweet anything; who cares what other people have to say? If you absolutely must interact, make sure you tweets are absolutely worthless to anyone other than the recipient, such as “@imafool2 LOL! ROTFL!!” or “@takemycash Oh sure. Not!” And if you feel compelled to occasionally pass another’s tweet along, retweet only links that point back to your spammy sales site.

There you have it. Follow this guidance and you too can abuse the entire concept of social media, annoy others, build up a huge following despite the complete lack of value you provide, and no doubt, make big money working from home.

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