Archive for the 'Digital Media' Category


boost your businesses SEO with video

I was perusing B2B Marketing Online’s Web site today when I stumbled upon a gem of a video discussing online video’s role in boosting SEO for business-to-business marketers.

The presentation focuses on video’s ability to improve SEO via universal search. Universal search essentially takes search terms (ex. Recording artist Michael Franti) and delivers an extensive list of results representing many types of media (Online articles, videos, PDFs, photos etc.)

Below is an example of the search results I received for Michael Franti. You will notice that my search produced photo, video, Web site and news results.

Picture 4

To learn more about using videos to boost your company’s SEO, click here to be redirected to the video.


Mobile Marketing Ad-Growth Rates to Reach 94% a year hitting $87M by 2014.

Really? That was my reaction. Last week I blogged that the potential of mobile marketing is still to be realized, but growth at this percentage seems almost unrealistic. So many businesses are still adapting to social media let alone adding mobile marketing to their mix. Or are they?

In the article on, Juniper Research forecasts that this industry can expect a 94% growth rate ANNUALLY for the next FIVE years. That means more and more companies will be implementing mobile marketing campaigns.

mobile three phones

So why is mobile marketing so attractive? Cellular-news summed it up quite well “… it combines the wide reach of television with the precision of direct marketing and the tracking potential of the Internet.”

Recently, T-Mobile reported that “mobile ads are 30 times more effective than internet ads.” This doesn’t shock me since I’m not a big believer in banner ads. But this is such a significant number you can help but take notice. The findings come from a Czech Republic pilot program that included 22 advertisers, such as Coke-Cola and L’Oreal (yet over 3,000 advertisers were contacted – showing this channel is still in its infancy). Nonetheless, this just shows how global mobile marketing is.

Companies large and small are exploring and testing this channel. Lots of reports are being written. Organizations like hospitals are adding mobile communications to their mix. The possibilities do seem endless. iPhones are more affordable. Just about everyone has a mobile phone. There is quite a lot of data that could support this amount of growth. This is a hot topic.

If you are wondering what mobile marketing can do for your business, it’s very much like social media – you must first join in on the conversation. Let’s talk. I plan to keep blogging on this topic in July since there is so much to watch and review.

What is your company doing to reach consumers online? Are you texting your clients? Or sending coupons to your customers?


Welcome to the world of mobile marketing. The potential is still to be realized!

As if it is not enough for business owners to focus on social networking strategies and results, mobile marketing is quickly competing for the spotlight.


In April of last year, Google introduced mobile image ads allowing advertisers to send branded messages that appear as they would on your desktop. “The image ads are keyword-targeted, priced on a CPC basis and must link to a mobile web page, according to an article in” Click here for more.

As with any technology these days, it quickly advances and offers more. This past February, Google expanded its map feature offering real time location information. This could provide unique promotion opportunities for business owners who would communicate to their opt-in audience with timely information on store sales, etc. This could take advertising to a whole new level. Only time will tell.

But, do mobile marketing campaigns work?

Yes they do. But like with any advertising channel, there are a lot of contributing factors that can make a campaign successful. Look at Jiffy Lube in Iowa. In summary, they executed an integrated campaign, and sent out coupons via mobile. It garnered a great initial response, but the coupons were not redeemed on the same scale. It shows there is more to a campaign than just a great idea, it’s also about execution and timing. For more on their results, click here.

“Mobile marketing is so much more than just cell phones.” This is just one of the five things author Eric Bader of BrandInHand wrote that you should consider with mobile marketing. I think the key to this channel is that you can reach your market right at THEIR fingertips with their mini computer in hand. You just need to be targeted and timely with your communication. Click here to read more.

Here’s a list of 10 top mobile campaigns in 2006. I share this from a few years ago to show that mobile marketing is not new and is being used to promote products and services in a variety of ways, from shoes to entertainment. Click here for the supporting details.

  1. Nike ID
  2. Dove Campaign (For Real Beauty)
  3. Pontiac G6
  4. American Express Wimbledon Sponsorship
  5. Lenovo Mobile WAP
  6. NBC Deal or No Deal
  7. Axe
  8. Nike Airmax
  9. Addidas QR Tagging
  10. Snakes On a Plane

So, who should lead the way in exploring the success of this channel?

The answer is anyone who is trying to reach their target audience. This is not new technology, it just continues to advance and more results are becoming known. We don’t need to wait for the big corporations to test the market. They already are. We need to be smart about mobile campaign advertising and its integration into the big picture of our marketing mix.

Watch for more on this subject from me.

Have you used mobile marketing in your overall marketing plan? What results have you received? What advice would you like to share?


Kentucky Fried Chicken Executives Caught Making Prank Calls….Sweet!

El Pollo Loco (EPL) recently launched a simple, but not necessarily noteworthy, marketing campaign – a consumer taste challenge – against Kentucky Friend Chicken (KFC). But things got interesting when it was alleged that employees from KFC called the EPL consumer-hotline and pretended to be ordinary people impressed by KFC’s new grilled chicken – they seemed to forget that there may be a real person checking the messages.

Staff from EPL not only listened to the messages on their incoming hotline, but they also noticed the caller I.D. Low and behold, a 502 area code showed up. And while the person specifically said they were from California, area code 502 is for Kentucky, the same location of the world headquarters of KFC (YUM Brands). EPL staff was a little curious. “How could this be?” And we are curious, too. A little coincidental, don’t you think? Listen for yourself.

What do you think about this? If KFC was involved, a not-so-noteworthy marketing campaign for EPL could turn into bad PR for KFC.

For the record. I’m a life long fan of KFCOR.


stealing market share?

Increasing your company’s market share usually consists of tough, get-your-hands-dirty marketing strategy that includes product, pricing and promotional changes. However, every once in a while, a competitor drops an opportunity in your lap.

Post currently finds itself in the aforementioned position with its Shredded Wheat Brand and is taking advantage of the opportunity to steal market share from Kellogg’s. For those of you who are new to The Side Note, we reported in April on Kellogg’s run-in with the FTC for their Frosted Mini-Wheats advertising claims.

Those at Post acted quickly and are drawing attention to Shredded Wheat’s unchanged recipe. I was surprised to learn that Shredded Wheat has been made the same way since 1892. I think this is a good attempt at comforting any mothers who may have concerns about a cereal that is similar to Kellogg’s version of Frosted Mini-Wheats.

Post has accompanied the new print advertisements with a Web site- – which pokes fun at being “anti-progress.” This is a very good use of digital media. I like that Post is mixing in facts with humor. My favorite video is the “Speech On Progess.” (Below)

The ability of Post to respond quickly and strike while the iron is hot, further demonstrates the importance of knowing your competitive landscape and creating an appropriate angle to promote your product.


The Lottery That Will Save Your Life


I don’t know how I stumbled across this Web site but boy am I glad I did. The Institute for Human Continuity has initiated a lottery that “guarantees every citizen of this planet an equal chance of survival in 2012.”

OK, this is actually a promotional site for the upcoming movie, 2012, which plays out an end of the world scenario. For those of you who don’t know, the Mayan calendar either ends or rolls over (no one is sure) in 2012 and many believe the world will follow suit.

Regardless, this site is an amazing promotional piece. Not only do you get to enter the lottery that will “save your life” (read: keep you updated on the movie with some really cool promotional materials), but you also can play out many different scenarios and watch the earth be destroyed. You get to decide how close the comet will come, how hot the sun will get, and how much the planet will crack, and the simulation estimates casualties for you.

Play the disaster scenarios here.

Now, I know we don’t usually go into movie sites on The Side Note, but this is viral at its best and a fantastic promotion for the movie. There are videos and tons of extra information to keep you engaged and to build the movie into something I hope it can live up to. Enjoy.




OpenZine Evolves the Blog

As social media continues to evolve, OpenZine has found a new way to present the blog. OpenZine creates “a blog that groups your posts with a magazine style cover you design.” This lets you build themes through the use of issues, allowing bloggers the luxury of posting more content less often.

picture-1While I am enthralled by this idea, and loving all the nifty covers, I did find some room for improvement for this forward-thinking site. For instance, I would like to see the content that bloggers create uploaded into a page-flipping book so that I can flip the pages of a virtual magazine or popular underground zine. Not only would this add yet another layer to what OpenZine is trying to accomplish, but it would enhance the experiences of both the producers and the readers.

Regardless, OpenZine has done a great job expanding the blog, and I suspect this is the first step of many. The presentation of blogs will continue to progress along with the ideas of the bloggers. Let’s take it to the next level.

Have any of you used a platform like this?

Tomorrow on The Side Note: Enter a lottery that may save your life



Fuser has been around for a while now. For those of you who are not familiar with it, Fuser is a free online tool that allows you to check email and social network messages all from one inbox. Essentially, it fuses everything together.

Though I have not yet allowed myself to be fused, I do see the benefit here. Between Facebook, MySpace, AOL, Twitter, Linkedin and work email, it can be tedious to log into so many different (yet essential?) systems. With the “big bang” of social networks in the last few years, a consolidation tool is sorely needed. After all, the laws of physics declare that a thing can only expand so much before it must collapse on itself (read: the sun, the economy and bubble gum).


Why am I so hesitant to stick my toes in the water? I have a morbid fear that my compartmentalized life will implode if I fuse it all together, leaving me with missed messages and MAILER-DAEMON notices. Man, I hate those things. So in lieu of subjecting my entire virtual life to the fangs of Fuser, I’ve read reviews on the service so I would know where to point you all to find out more.

Joseph Crawford has written a very thorough review on the service, including all of its pros and cons. Check out his article to see for yourself if it’s time to fuse your life.

And let me know how it goes.

Tomorrow on The Side Note: The top Super Bowl ads of all time. Cast your vote!


Make Money From Home: Cyber Squat!

Fast Company’s TechWatch posted an article last week announcing the emergence of Web suffixes, with potentials such as “.nyc” and “.law.” With this expansion of the World Wide Web (eventually to be named the Universe Wide Web, I’m sure), Fast Company dreads the reemergence of the much-feared Cyber Squatter.

Fast Company says:
“Cyber squatting…unscrupulous Web trollers buy up domain names that are sometimes outright infringements on trademarks — say, “” — hoping that a given company will buy or lease the domain name rather than spend the money suing for it. And many times, the scheme works.”

Scheme? What scheme? This is the art of capitalism at it’s finest. Work smart, not hard…right? Why should Apple get all the money if some genius out there managed to outthink them by buying a valuable domain name first? I only wish I had the patience and foresight to sit down and do this myself.

And I’m really interested in hearing your take. Is cyber squatting a viable business solution for the common person, or are there ethics involved?

Regardless of my views on this, Fast Company provides some really valuable information about the upcoming suffixes. Make sure to check out their article.

Tomorrow’s Side Note: Repower America. It’s not political. I promise.
And what’s better than Shark Week? Find out tomorrow!


2009 Digital Trend Predictions


What digital trends can we expect in 2009? A recent press release announced that Placecast thinks they know. Predicted trends include:

•    Advertisers will seek new methods of data mining to enhance campaigns
•    The Web will be connected to the physical world via location data (this one scares the heck out of me), which will open a wide array of possibilities for marketing
•    Privacy concerns will mandate a need for regulation (see the previous bullet)
•    View-through will be measured as a complement to PPC, allowing us to learn how ads affect audiences when the ads are not “clicked”
•    There will be a ton of advertising display space available in the wake of the recession
•    Online video will continue to boom

That’s the short list. Details for each of these is available in the press release. What’s your take on this? Do you think these predictions hold up or is the crystal ball full of hot air?

And tomorrow:
What do you get when you get some on the side? Well, tomorrow you get to find out how to make money from home. That’s right, Cyber Squatting is back!

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