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Friday, November 30, 2012

Video Drives Tech Purchasing Survey

                                                                                                                                    From an article in ReelSeo by Christopher Rick

A recent consumer survey by DGTechNetwork showed that video plays a vital role in the purchasing decisions of today's electronics and technology consumers. But it's not just standard video advertising that we are talking about. They look for a variety of content that will help them make a better informed decision and then tend to act on the information that they've found. Here's a quick breakdown of the survey results.

Before I talk about the results I wanted to give you a run down of how the data was collected. It was an online survey aimed at 'better understanding the demographic profile of the IDGTechNetwork audience.' The research was done via online invitations to complete the survey by 'editorial stakeholders of sites within the IDGTechNetwork.' The responses were collected from April 30th to August 24th of this year.

IDG TechNetwork is a global network of 500+ niche and mainstream tech sites, comprised of 130 million monthly unique visitors and 1.2 billion monthly impressions—in short, we have a powerful audience that leads spending on consumer technology products. 2,354 readers participated in this survey across a broad cross-section of sites.
IDG's Results - Video DOES influence technology purchases

According to the IDGTechNetwork survey, 90% of the respondents watch video about tech products. In the report they say 9 out of 10 users, but I seriously doubt they polled the whole of their audience. 40% of respondents were classified as "frequent viewers" of consumer tech videos. Whether frequent is daily, weekly or monthly I'm not sure.

Twenty-three percent said they watch video on their mobile phone and 10% stated they prefer ads with video on that platform.

Combined with Video Ads, Original Custom Content Increases action quite dramatically!

The type of content that the respondents search for most is not only standard video advertising which should come as no surprise. When looking for information regarding a potential future purchase, 90% of the respondents stated they look for product demos, and reviews as they felt they are valuable. 80% stated the found thought leaderships pieces and expert interviews helpful, and 77% said they believed customer testimonials to be very valuable.

According to the report summary,
Advertisers looking to reach tech enthusiasts should consider original content such as product demos or video reviews to supplement the 30-second-spot.

Here's a look at recent purchases and planned purchases from this audience, taken from the survey. The magenta is purchased in the last 12 months, the orange planned purchases in the next 12 months.

Christopher rightfully points out in his article, the major takeaway from the IDGTechNetwork 2012 Consumer Audience Research survey is what kind of content you should be looking at making based on what you have to sell. Product demos, customer testimonials and thought leadership pieces all seem to have a good amount of value.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Boost Email Marketing With Video

Brendan Cournoyer/imediaconnection

While the benefits of video marketing are typically tied to things like brand awareness and audience engagement, the power of video can also be used to add depth and value to your email marketing campaigns.
How to boost your email marketing with videos
In a recent study by Experian Marketing, simply including the word "video" in the subject line of an email was shown to increase click-through-rates by anywhere from 7 percent to 13 percent. The report also notes that email campaigns with embedded video turned in an average conversion rate that was 21 percent higher than those with straight text and static images. A small sample size? Sure. But numbers like these are certainly nothing to sneeze at.
Video lends itself well to a variety of different email campaign types and strategies, and many companies are only beginning to discover the possibilities. Reporting, for example, can provide valuable insight into the true effectiveness of your campaigns. Video analytics can be used to not only measure individual clicks, but also the engagement and retention rate of those viewers, helping shed light on who's truly interested in your message -- information not easily gained from text-based documents.
So how can you start taking advantage of these opportunities? Here are just a few ideas to consider that can really help take your email marketing to the next level.

Webinar promotion

Live webinars and virtual events are great tools for establishing authority in your industry and, of course, generating new leads. To encourage more attendees, some companies have taken to creating short webinar "trailers" to help drive registration via email. These videos are typically short (two to three minutes max) and often include personalized teasers from the event's featured speaker or expert.
It's also common to make webinars available on-demand following the live event, in which case organizations can use video snippets from the presentation to promote via email going forward, thus further extending the life and value of their content.

Target segmentation

While general "air cover" promotions are still important, businesses today have the ability to parse and filter email lists in a number of ways. As a result, it makes sense then to have content that speaks to more specific, targeted audiences to support these campaigns.
Video is a great way to get your message in front of particular verticals, markets, and industries, allowing you to communicate targeted messages in a fraction of the time of traditional whitepapers and press releases. Marketing organizations can learn about the needs and challenges of buyers in different industries, roles, and company sizes, and then gear their video content in a way that speaks directly to those audiences via target segmentation and email marketing.

Customer testimonials

Later in the sales funnel, it's often a good idea to hook prospects in with real-world stories from satisfied customers. But while written testimonials and quotes are all well and good, actually being able to see and hear a customer give a first-hand account adds a lot more credibility to your message.
This type of content works great as a sales resource, but can also bolster your nurturing email campaigns when aimed at specific targets, particularly those that are similar to the customers in your testimonial. Once again, these types of videos are most effective later in the cycle, after at least some interest by the prospect has already been established.

Prospect follow-ups

This one admittedly works as more of a sales tool than traditional email marketing, but it's still an interesting example of leveraging video as part of your company's overall email strategy. After a meeting with a prospective buyer, it's sales 101 to send out a follow-up via email. But including a personalized video message can be an even more powerful way to maintain a prospect's attention and help you stand out from the pack.
With today's technology, creating videos is easier than ever before. Sales and marketing reps can even convert PowerPoint slides into voice-enriched videos to be sent out to potential clients. In this case, a follow-up email, or "discovery letter," can include a short overview of the meeting, a breakdown of the prospect's needs and objectives, and specific details and proposals on how your company's product can help solve their particular problems. Since response rates for emails with video tend to be much higher anyway, this strategy can be especially powerful when engaging buyers toward the end of the sales cycle.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Using Social Signals To Improve SEO

Post provided by Ben Sawyer, well known blogger and Internet Marketing Strategist.
In order for your website to achieve the level of success you are looking for, you need to engage in some type of online marketing. Currently, search engine optimization and social media marketing are two of the best ways you can promote your website and drive targeted traffic to your business.

While SEO and SMM are two different entities, they are becoming increasingly intertwined thanks to the latest search engine algorithm updates released by Google. Google is now placing a larger emphasis on social signals to determine whether or not a website is providing its users with quality content. The thinking behind Google’s algorithm updates is that if your website does provide value to your readers, those readers will want to share it with their social circles via their social media accounts. If your website has a lot of backlinks coming from these social media websites, then it will be rewarded with a higher ranking in the search results.

Because of these recent Google algorithm changes, it is important for businesses to include social media marketing techniques with their SEO campaigns. This will allow your website to obtain the highest possible rankings within the search results.

How to Improve your Social Signals
There are a variety of ways that you can improve your website’s social signals in order to obtain a higher ranking within the search engine. One of the easiest strategies you can use is to include social media buttons on your website’s content. This will enable any visitor to your website to easily share your content through their social media accounts. If someone has a large following on a social media website, their followers may see your link posted on their account and share it with their followers, greatly improving your website’s credibility in the eye’s of the search engines.

Another way to improve your social signals is to actively market your website on the most popular social media websites. Creating a Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Pinterest account for your business will allow you to raise the awareness of your company on those websites while simultaneously connecting with their users.

Once you have created your accounts, you will need to actively engage with people on those social media websites. By interacting with people on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, you will be able to form meaningful relationships with them. This will lead to those people following your account and seeing all of the new content that you produce.

After you start to build a following for your social media accounts, you will want to provide your followers with nothing but high quality content. When you provide your visitors with nothing but great content, you will become an industry leader and viewed as an expert in your field. This will allow your business to gain credibility and the trust of your followers. Once people view your business as an industry expert, they will be more likely to share your content with their social media followers and help build valuable backlinks for your website.

As search engines start to place more of an emphasis on social signals when determining where your website should be ranked, it is important for businesses to add social media marketing to their overall SEO strategy. With an increase of links coming from social media websites, a business’s website will move up the search engine results as Google will view the website as an authority figure.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

What Marketers Can Learn From The 2012 Presidential Campaigns

Recently on
While 2008 was considered by many "the Facebook Election," TV-or, more precisely, video  reasserted its strategic importance in 2012. Mr. Obama had a challenging platform to sell given the performance of the economy, but he did in most cases outspend Romney in TV, in many cases 2 to 1. We also saw a heavy shift of dollars into online video. Hulu revealed that election spending on the online video site was up 700% from the last election.
Barack Obama after his acceptance speech in Chicago
Part of the appeal of online video is the ability to hyper-target, that is, the ability to pinpoint media and commercial messaging within a narrow catchment area. In Blacksburg, Va., for example, there are 30,000 students residing at Virginia Tech. The Obama campaign's Hulu buys targeted the schools' zip code with "Gotta Vote" spots to encourage students to register and turn out.
Broadcast advertising, too, was tailored to local issues. In Ohio, Mr. Obama's campaign targeted blue-collar women by promoting its track record on jobs, whereas in Florida, the Romney campaign sought Cuban-American voters with hard-hitting TV commercials claiming Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez supported Mr. Obama's policies.

Are we as marketers really taking opportunity of localizing our media and messaging? Despite a lot of talk about targeting, many marketers still emphasize efficiency in spending over relevance to different customer segments and markets. In the past, Cable media buys taught us the cost saving relevence in market targeting. This trend is magnified with the increased growth of online video.
Take note that Streaming Media magazine's research states that in 2013 a whopping 90% of online content will be video. If you haven't already taken advantage of that you're missing the boat!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Video, The New SEO!

Placing and promoting video on your web pages will get your page ranked faster on Google!
Also be aware thatGoogle has a new"strategy in it's video ranking routine. It is now tracking not only the popularity of your video (how many views) but is is also figuring into the equation the quality of the video by noting how long someone stays on the video before clicking off. What this does is make having high production quality (and engaging) video more important than having thousands of "paid for" views. (A spammer method.)
Realize that You Tube is a Google property, so it might not be a bad idea to use the You Tube Player to place video on your pages.
Another good tip is to place your "Call To Action" at the right point in your videos. You can use Google Analytics to spot viewer drop off rates and insert your "CTA" before that point. Just be aware that you should imbed  the video to your webpage, sitemap it and drive links to the video boosting page rank on Google. If you do the same thing with a YouTube video and drive links to it, you'll will only boost up the video hosted on a YouTube page, not your own webpage.