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Daniel Rodgers

A lot of news that you will not see in the paper. A lot of technology that is coming out that will not see in the paper.

Local Business Facebook Ads: What Marketers Need to Know

Do you want more foot traffic for your local business? Wondering how Facebook ads can help? To explore what local businesses need to know about Facebook ads, I interview Allie Bloyd on the Social Media Marketing Podcast. Allie is a Facebook ads expert who specializes in helping local businesses. She’s the founder of Allie Bloyd […]

The post Local Business Facebook Ads: What Marketers Need to Know appeared first on Social Media Marketing | Social Media Examiner.

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Social Spotlight: How Netflix uses social to create a brand experience

Welcome to the Social Spotlight, where each week we’ll dive deep into what we love about a brand’s approach to a specific social campaign. Read more...

This post Social Spotlight: How Netflix uses social to create a brand experience originally appeared on Sprout Social.

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UTM tracking & URL shortening for social media marketers

Every social media marketer is different. They have their own methods, practices and sets of skills. But there’s one thing that every social media Read more...

This post UTM tracking & URL shortening for social media marketers originally appeared on Sprout Social.

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10 Call to action phrase examples that increase clicks and conversions

Creating social media content is much more than simply writing clever captions to accompany your photos and blog posts. While that’s still important to Read more...

This post 10 Call to action phrase examples that increase clicks and conversions originally appeared on Sprout Social.

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How to Choose a Domain Name (+ 30 Blog Name Generators!)

This is the web’s most in-depth guide on how to choose a domain name. It’s also the web’s largest resource for blog name generators (to help you brainstorm ideas). In this post, you’ll learn how to create a large list of domain name candidates, how to check which ones are available, and how to buy the(...)

The post How to Choose a Domain Name (+ 30 Blog Name Generators!) appeared first on Smart Blogger.

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B2B Marketing Spotlight: Jay Baer on Employee Generated Content #mpb2b

Jay Baer Interview

Jay Baer Interview B2B Marketing

It was back in 2010 at SXSWi that I was in the blogger lounge networking with other social media savvy content creators and thought leaders like Brian Solis, Chris Heuer, Amber Naslund, Chris Brogan and Rohit Bhargava, when I met a fellow marketer who shared a metal bottle opener as his business card.

What a brilliant idea! Package your identity around something useful to trigger conversations.

Fast forward to 2019 and Jay Baer has continued to carry that message of utility, talk triggers and clever marketing savvy to his online media empire of Convince & Convert that includes an award winning blog, a network of podcasts, professional speaking, training and consulting.

Jay is the New York Times best-selling author of six books including his most recent, Talk Triggers. He is also a serial entrepreneur, technology company investor and a world class professional keynote speaker that has been inducted into the Professional Speaking Hall of Fame. On top of all that, Jay is an avid tequila collector, a certified barbecue judge and owner of some of the most colorful and stylish suits you'll see on the speaking circuit.

On Wednesday October 16th, Jay will be giving an opening keynote on how to turn your customers into volunteer marketers at the MarketingProfs B2B Forum in Washington D.C.. Jay was kind enough to connect with me to talk about the topic of employee advocacy and world of mouth marketing.

Enjoy the full video interview below:

Jay Baer on B2B Marketing Alphabet Soup and How to Get Focused

"I feel like you should go back to the utility principle which is, let's set aside all the shenanigans and just say, 'Okay look, what do these prospective customers need and how can we give that to them?' If we do that consistently, eventually we're gonna win. Ultimately, that's the only great truism of marketing. Give people what they need and eventually you will win. But there's not enough patience."

Ultimately, the only great truism of marketing is, give people what they need and eventually you will win. @jaybaer

"People aren't like, "Hey, LinkedIn post, here's $1 million for a software package." There is actually a consideration period here. I've been doing some consulting with B2B companies that have last-click attribution on social. So you're telling me that your software company is going to try and sell software off a tweet? Like, that ain't going to happen. No wonder you think your social media doesn't work."

"Ultimately I feel like there's not enough patience in the game and the culture around B2B is becoming a culture of instant performance and that is not going to work."

Jay Baer on Employee Advocacy and Customer Experience

"If you have a truly differentiated customer experience, something that creates conversations, your employees will naturally echo that and amplify it and connect the dots for potential customers. They will be part of the marketing arsenal. The problem with employee advocacy is that marketers completely forget what it's like to be a customer."

If you have a truly differentiated customer experience, something that creates conversations, your employees will naturally echo that and amplify it and connect the dots for potential customers. @jaybaer

"It's like this weird amnesia effect sits in and they're like, 'Oh, so they're not just gonna tweet out this thing that says this company is the greatest company in history.' And it's like, 'No bro, you wouldn't do that either. Why would you think it should be so nakedly promotional? It's like a commercial and nobody's going to put that on their personal social media.' They're just trying to turn employees into shills and nobody's down with that."

Jay Baer on What He Loves Most About MarketingProfs CCO, Ann Handley

"Yeah, I don't know. I don't really like anything about her. No, she's one of my favorite people. She is incredibly, incredibly successful but also one of the most genuine and kind people I know despite her massive success, which is extraordinary. But I'll tell you the one thing that I will reference that doesn't get enough talk about Ann Handley, is that as the crazy suit guy, I really appreciate Ann's pants game."

"She's really started, in the last two years especially, I know she's really starting to lean into the crazy pants routine and I feel like A, she stole my bit, but B, I do appreciate that she's going for it on the pants. I may have to find some pants for Ann as a B2B forum gift. We'll see."

I'm glad I'm not the only one who appreciates Ann's Pants.  Thanks Jay! 

B2B Forum
Bound for B2B Forum: For more information about imagining what’s possible in B2B including Jay Baer's keynote, check out the MarketingProfs B2B Forum conference including agenda, list of speakers (including Ashley Zeckman and myself) and many other fun facts on the B2B Forum website here. Also, get $100 off by using this mpb2b discount code: B2BFriends

Get more great info from Jay on Convince and Convert and follow Jay on Twitter here: @jaybaer

The post B2B Marketing Spotlight: Jay Baer on Employee Generated Content #mpb2b appeared first on Online Marketing Blog - TopRank®.

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5 Top B2B Brands Maximizing LinkedIn Engagement

Group of businesspeople image.

Group of businesspeople image.

With more than 645 million users in over 200 countries, LinkedIn* has increasingly grown as a platform for both B2B and direct-to-consumer brands looking to creatively and effectively showcase products and services.

LinkedIn has released scores of new features over the past several years that have helped it remain the foremost social media platform for professional business users.

It's also increasingly become a destination for all manner and size of brands, and users looking for an experience markedly different from that offered by Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Since LinkedIn has rolled out so many new tools for brands to maximize their engagement on the Microsoft-owned platform, let’s take a look at how five large primarily B2B companies are connecting with audiences through the myriad of page, group, and showcase page options LinkedIn now provides.

#1 — SAP

SAP LinkedIn

LinkedIn profile: SAP
1,655,343 followers
LinkedIn tagline: "Our purpose is to help the world run better and improve people’s lives. #TheBestRun"

Listed as number 26 on the LinkedIn Top Companies to Work For list in 2019, SAP* has successfully utilized LinkedIn to engage with its audience of fans, using a wide variety of message post types, including many that incorporate innovative use of video.

From a recent New York Fashion Week post about the firm’s “Runway by SAP” live-audience feedback app using the Internet of Things (Iot), machine learning algorithms, and beacon technology, to news of its partnership with Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group, SAP keeps its LinkedIn messaging both entertaining and relevant to the more than 1.6 million people following its page.

SAP Example

Whether it’s a post featuring company chief executive Bill McDermott interviewing Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi at an industry conference, or a “Hastag Holiday” message that combines honoring #WorkingParentsDay with promoting careers at the firm, SAP creatively and enthusiastically wields its LinkedIn page.

SAP has also featured LinkedIn messaging surrounding a variety of company goals, including its efforts to have at least 28 percent women in leadership roles by 2020, and 30 percent by 2022 — goals that far exceed the present 11 percent of women who are technology executives.

#2 — Pitney Bowes

Pitney Bowes LinkedIn

LinkedIn profile: Pitney Bowes
83,424 followers
LinkedIn tagline: "We are the craftsmen of commerce."

Pitney Bowes uses a variety of engaging techniques to connect with its sizable LinkedIn audience.

From using visually engaging posts highlighting positive company initiatives such as its "Global Early in Career Development Program (EiC)" leadership program, which targets high-potential millennial talent, to informative messaging spotlighting free webinars featuring company experts, and video posts exploring customer experience and relationship-building in business, Pitney Bowes offer a strong and compelling LinkedIn presence.

Pitney Bowes Example

#3 — Xerox

Xerox LinkedIn Image

LinkedIn profile: Xerox
784,030 followers
LinkedIn tagline: "Think of all the possibilities. We do. #MadeToThink"

Xerox uses video, images, documents and other digital assets to enhance its LinkedIn customer and fan experience.

During the most recent U.S. Open tennis tournament Xerox used its LinkedIn account to feature an event-specific video post examining how tennis balls became the color they are now known for, part of a sizable campaign that occupied many of the company's LinkedIn posts during the event.

Xerox Example

Xerox also regularly uses its LinkedIn profile to offer helpful online guides, links to in-depth research on data protection and security, and messages with informational product overviews.

#4 — Dropbox

Dropbox LinkedIn Image

LinkedIn profile: Dropbox
239,978 followers
LinkedIn tagline: "Keep teams flowing with Dropbox."

Spotlighting teams and offering behind-the-scenes glimpses into life at a company is a time-tested tactic for engaging with customers, and Dropbox has used this approach effectively on its active LinkedIn page, recently sharing fun image-heavy messages detailing how its "Dropboxers" from around the world participated in various events such as scavenger hunts and Secret Garden parties.

Other Dropbox messages from its LinkedIn profile feature more in-depth pieces about Dropboxers.

Dropbox Example

Dropbox also utilized LinkedIn to spread news about new corporate executives, such as its recent announcement post about the appointment of Asha Thurthi as vice president of Dropbox Paper, the firm's collaborative document-editing service.

More brands are also now using some of the newer LinkedIn features, such as the ability to tag people in photos, post video in private messages, and easier use of PowerPoint and PDF files on the platform.

#5 — Siemens

Siemens LinkedIn Image

LinkedIn profile: Siemens
2,997,732 followers
LinkedIn tagline: NA

Siemens has used its LinkedIn profile to highlight live video broadcasting efforts such as a message detailing one it recently conducted at the 24th World Energy Congress, featuring the firm's CEO of Power Generation Karim Amin.

Siemens Example

Siemens also recognizes relevant hashtag holidays to engage with its LinkedIn audiences of more than three million followers, such as a lighthearted recent image post celebrating Programmers Day with a visual look at the Python programming language.

Helpful community engagement from those managing Siemens' LinkedIn presence serves to enforce the firms' dedication to making social messaging a two-way street, by answering customer questions in a timely manner.

With a global presence, Siemens also takes advantage of LinkedIn's built-in translation features to publish messages in multiple languages when appropriate.

Building a Solid & Sustainable LinkedIn Strategy

It’s clear from the varied examples we’ve looked at here deftly implemented by SAP, Siemens, Pitney Bowes, Dropbox, and Xerox that there are many successful methods for building a solid and sustainable LinkedIn brand strategy.

LinkedIn itself has had an ongoing effort to help brands with content creation on the platform, including it's helpful Getting Started with Content Creation on LinkedIn guide.

It's also expanded its Campaign Manager features for brands, implemented new features for small-to-medium-size businesses, launched greater audience insight initiatives, and published a checklist for B2B technology marketers.

With enough time, staff, and dedication most brands can build their own successful ongoing LinkedIn strategy, while others may find it more efficient and practical to partner with a professional marketing agency highly skilled in LinkedIn-specific efforts.

TopRank Marketing recently had the honor of being named by Forrester as the only B2B marketing agency offering influencer marketing as a top capability in its latest “B2B Marketing Agencies, North America, Q1 2019” report.”

Finally, here are five recent articles we've written that relate specifically to either LinkedIn or to the process of creating engaging B2B content marketing:

* LinkedIn and SAP are TopRank Marketing clients.

The post 5 Top B2B Brands Maximizing LinkedIn Engagement appeared first on Online Marketing Blog - TopRank®.

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Facebook Campaign Budget Optimization: What Marketers Need to Know

Are you ready for the biggest fundamental change to Facebook advertising in years? Did you know Facebook is making campaign budget optimization (CBO) the default for Facebook ads? In this article, you’ll discover how to use the new CBO setting to create Facebook advertising campaigns and when CBO will become your only option. Facebook Campaign […]

The post Facebook Campaign Budget Optimization: What Marketers Need to Know appeared first on Social Media Marketing | Social Media Examiner.

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How to do keyword research for SEO and beyond

It’s common knowledge that keywords help you find a place in search engine results. But improving search engine visibility isn’t their only purpose. Keywords Read more...

This post How to do keyword research for SEO and beyond originally appeared on Sprout Social.

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Tales from the Trenches: How to Transition from Marketing Doer to Marketing Leader

I was roughly five years into my marketing career when I began managing my first direct report. It was the biggest challenge I faced yet. I was now being evaluated on the actions, successes, and failures of another person—and I also knew it was my responsibility to give them the support and tools they needed to have more successes than failures.

I felt as if I didn’t know how to influence, motivate, or persuade another person. But I was given the opportunity to try and to learn. I had a great group of bosses, mentors, and peers giving me advice, listening to my concerns or wins, and allowing me to make mistakes.

Quite a few years (and many direct reports) later, today I have a much better handle on how to manage a team. And as I’ve grown, I’ve learned that my job isn’t just to manage people, time, projects, or priorities, my job is to lead.

But it can be hard to make the transition from a “doer” to a leader. And the stakes are high. In fact, a recent study from TINYpulse found that nearly 50% of employees have quit a job because of a less than stellar manager. In addition, those who don’t feel recognized for their work are two-times as likely to be job hunting.

Whether you’re stepping into your first management role, moving onto middle management, or you have your eye on the CMO office, as a leader it’s your job to inspire, motivate, and grow a happy and high-functioning team. The insights below are designed to help guide you down a successful path to a fruitful career and happy, supported, and motivated employees. 

Tip #1: Understand the landscape

Whether you’re managing one team member or an entire department, you’ll be setting goals and playing an integral role in setting the marketing strategy your team is responsible for driving results with. But to do that, you must understand the broad and niche context in which your organization, department, or service line operates. This means getting to know your customers, prospects, and competitors more deeply, so you thoughtfully can guide and educate your team:

  • Seek out opportunities to hold monthly or quarterly one-on-one calls with your priority customers. Ask them what they value most about your organization or product, as well as where you can do better. 
  • Regularly research your competitors. Subscribe to emails, follow them on social media, and attend industry events where they might be speaking. This will give you unique intel that you can bring back to your team.
  • Get out of the marketing silo. Brainstorm with the sales team. Talk to your customer service team. These teams are intimately familiar with the challenges your customers and prospects face.

Tip #2: Set goals … and exceed them

Yes, you’ve probably be setting goals at all stages of your career. As an individual contributor, your goals were likely focused on what you could individually achieve. In a leadership role, you’re likely responsible for setting goals for your team that will ladder to corporate goals. If you are new to a leadership role, achieving goals that map directly to the success of the company, can be a quick win to build trust within leadership and grow your team and influence. 

  • Keep your goals top of mind. Discuss progress, roadblocks, and wins with your team, your boss, and other leaders. The more discussion around goals, the more likely you and your team are to remain focused and accountable on achieving them. 
  • Incentivize if you can. Big and small incentives can keep your team motivated to achieve their goals.
  • Make it a number. In my experience, setting and achieving a numerical goal has more impact on the organization and is generally more impressive than an accomplishment-based goal. For example, make the goal double MQLs, instead of rolling out a new marketing automation system. The marketing automation system is a stepping stone to reach the goal, not the actual goal. 
  • Set goals quarterly. Ninety days is long enough to achieve something big-ish, but short enough to keep you focused. We’ve found quarterly goals helps us track for the year and keep the team more motivated. 

[bctt tweet="The more discussion around goals, the more likely you and your team are to remain focused and accountable on achieving them. @Alexis5484" username="toprank"]

Tip #3: Focus on scalability

Once it’s time to step out of day-to-day execution and supervision and into leadership, you should focus more on optimizing and solving issues on a systematic basis, rather than local basis. When I was a new manager, I found myself constantly on the run putting out fires as they would pop up, instead of focusing on why it started and how to prevent it going forward.

  • Create make-sense processes. Identify the things your team does over and over again such as campaign launches, attending events, or adding new content to the website. These are replicable events that you can create process around and then optimize for efficiency, results, and so on.
  • Don’t feel like you have to stick to the status quo. Just because the marketing team has always had six copywriters, two content strategists, and an analyst, doesn’t mean that’s the ideal structure. Document the needs and functions of the organization and then map out the most make-sense roles to those needs. For the sake of the exercise, take the current situation out of it. You can employ a phased approach to get you from current situation to ideal. 

Tip #4: Shift the spotlight to your team

As you’re moving into leadership, you’re likely trying to build trust and show value to upper leadership, and it can be easy to lose focus on serving your team. Fostering a happy, well-functioning team is your top priority. Not only can you not do your job without them, but it is one of the best indicators of success to your boss and your boss’s boss. 

  • Shift how you find personal value from work. Most of us have moved into leadership, after being highly successful individual contributors and supervisors. As leaders, we must find more value from the task, result, or project we helped someone else achieve, rather than the work we did ourselves. 
  • Clear obstacles. Be transparent when you can; have your employees’ backs. These things build trust and create a secure, happy, and productive team. 
  • Cultivate the next round of leaders. Understand what your team wants to achieve personally within their careers within the next five or 10 years, and help them do that. As leaders, we should always be identifying and growing the team members who want to move to the next round in their careers. 

[bctt tweet="Most of us have moved into leadership, after being highly successful individual contributors and supervisors. As leaders, we must find more value from the task, result, or project we helped someone else achieve. @Alexis5484" username="toprank"]

Tip #5: Stay fresh on the job

At all levels of my career, I’ve found the best way to build trust with a team is to help them solve a problem. The more you understand your team’s job function, the more able you will be able to help them solve problems, innovate, and provide feedback to improve the function of their performance. 

  • Stay fresh. I find the best way to do this is to jump in and help execute from time to time. So, write a blog post or create the tactical plan. This keeps you from getting rusty, but also helps you empathize with your team and the challenges within their roles. 
  • Ask questions. Sometimes you won’t understand the details of what they’re working on, particularly if you’re leading a cross functional team. But ask questions. Help them look at the problem critically, and it’s likely you’ll guide them to their own answer. 

Tip #6: Be the leader

One of the toughest transitions from individual contributor to leader, is owning your role as the leader. For the first few years that I was managing a small team, I was more likely to be found deep in the weeds, doing the tasks I did in my previous job titles, than actually doing my work as a leader.

There were a couple reasons for this. It was comfortable doing the work; I already knew how to do it and I was good at. I also felt like I was most helpful to my team if I was helping them get the work done by actually doing the work. 

This was not true. See tip No. 3. You (and I) are most helpful to your team when you’re solving systematic problems, optimizing workflow and production, and creating a happy and secure work environment. If you’re always in the weeds, all you can see is the weeds. 

[bctt tweet="You're most helpful to your team when you’re solving systematic problems, optimizing workflow and production, and creating a happy and secure work environment. @Alexis5484 on being a #marketing leader" username="toprank"]

Tip #7: Keep learning

The leaders I am most inspired by inside and outside of my organization are probably the most voracious learners. Continuous learning through a variety of mediums will help you continue to evolve your skill set, bring in fresh ideas, and help you be inspired to test something new. Here are a couple of the resources that I go to:

  • Read: HBR is a go to for great content on how to lead, manage and shape a business. 
  • Listen: Dear HBR has a great Q&A format about navigating workplace challenges. 
  • Attend: Industry events are great for providing outside perspective, networking with other leaders and inspiring the evolution of your tactics. MarketingProfs is a great event for marketers.

Take Your Place at the Leadership Table

Each stage of your career offers a unique set of challenges and opportunities. The way in which you handle those situations—tackling them head-on or leaving them for someone else—has the potential to make or break your success in that position… and the one that may or may not come after. Keep these pieces of advice in mind as you work to build your team, your organization, and career as a leader.

Looking for more tips on how to inspire, motivate, and build a more effective marketing team? Check out our tips for getting your marketing team to work better together.

The post Tales from the Trenches: How to Transition from Marketing Doer to Marketing Leader appeared first on Online Marketing Blog - TopRank®.

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