So You Think Your Website Is Perfect. Here's 7 Reasons You May Be Wrong

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OK so the entire world of marketing has been wetting its pants over social media and content marketing the last few years but what about that old fashion - yet, incredibly important -- thing called a website? Have you dusted it for cobwebs lately?

And after all that time and money you spend on social media and content marketing, it's still the website -- or the most part -- where all the action you care about -- sign ups, sales, etc. -- occurs. So if your website is still a piece of annoying Flashturbation or, worse, not supporting your omnichannel efforts, you might as well go unearth that Geocities version of your website from back in the day.

Here's a few tenets of a well oiled website. Maybe you know all this stuff. Maybe you've forgotten. And, hey, we all get busy and can use a good, swift reminder from time to time.

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by Peter Daisyme    Aug-31-15    
Topic: Online



4 Things Brands Can Learn From Subway's Jared Fogle Scandal

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Jared Fogle, the man that taught America it was possible to lose more than 200 pounds eating subway sandwiches, has been charged with possessing child pornography and is reportedly planning to plead guilty.

Fogle was also the leading spokesperson for Subway for 15 years and contributed to nearly half of Subway's growth.

As the news of Fogle's charges became a reality, Subway quickly cut ties with their former spokesperson.

Here are 4 things brands can learn from Subway's recent crisis.

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by Steve Hall    Aug-31-15    
Topic: Opinion



Here's How PR Can Be A Startup's Secret Weapon

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As a startup, you may not be able to afford a full-time, dedicated PR team quite yet, so you opt for contractors, outsourced agencies, or part-time PR pros. There is some great ad-hoc talent out there that you can add into the startup mix, but just be sure that you start with careful planning first.

There are many ways to cut corners for a tighter startup budget, but starting with PR fat trimming shouldn't be one of them. Without a great PR strategy and team, a business has a higher chance of failing because potential customers and investors won't see what's so great about your goods or services. The PR strategy is essential for targeting and understanding your audience, studying the competition, and crafting the most relevant campaign messaging.

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by Peter Daisyme    Aug-27-15    
Topic: Opinion



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Beautifully Surreal Smartphone Ad Immerses Viewer In Crazy Download Drama

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In a valiant effort to illustrate the frustrating drama associated with the mundane task of downloading or buffering something off the internet with your smartphone, Del Campo Saatchi & Saatchi & Saatchi Buenos Aires has crafted a magical piece of creative.

Likening the frustration of watching the dreaded progress bar -- in this spot represented by YouTube red -- to being chased by all manner of horror such as an angry mob, a speeding locomotive, a swarm of bees and an army of rugby players, Del Campo gleefully, and in dramatic slow motion, perfectly represents the maddening practice of waiting for something to download on a slow connection.

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by Steve Hall    Aug-17-15    
Topic: Commercials



Let Me Tell You About IZEAfest And Why You Should Go This Year

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Six years ago in 2009 I went to IZEAfest in Orlando. It was an incredible event which occurred during the height of the birth of social media. It was one of the best conferences I've ever been to.

Well, IZEA Founder Ted Murphy is bringing it back in late October at the Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin Resort.

If you want to know what it was like in 2009, read this article and this article. Together, they sum up two days of conference awesomeness.

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by Steve Hall    Aug-13-15    
Topic: Industry Events



Top 10 Online Invoicing Tools for Advertising Agencies

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Invoicing has quickly become a major time-consuming task that seems to takes away from the work that you actually get paid for doing in the first place. Now, added to the regular invoicing duties is the tracking of these same clients for various campaigns and projects, tracking new clients to fulfill their needs, tracking the slow-to-pay, all the while working on your personal touch with clients (this begins to feel like it is growing distant and sometimes lags.)

It doesn't have to be that way if you take advantage of the growing toolbox full of online invoicing tools designed to help your advertising agency stay focused on the core business. Here are the top 10 online invoicing tools to consider:

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by Peter Daisyme    Aug-11-15    
Topic: Agencies



Study: 98% of Real-Time Marketers Report Positive, Measurable ROI

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Social media intelligence and marketing company Wayin conducted a study of 200 director level and higher marketing professionals who are currently practicing real-time marketing.

Real-time marketing has matured since Oreo dunked their cookie in the dark and has become an integral component of a brand's marketing strategy. In fact, 98% of respondents report positive return on their real-time marketing efforts; 89% of respondents have fully tied their real-time marketing efforts to measurable business goals; 56% believe real-time marketing help build customer relationships; 59% plan to increase their real-time marketing budget in the next year.

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by Steve Hall    Jul-22-15    
Topic: Research



5 Ways to Improve Your Influencer Marketing

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Influencer marketing is becoming a standard in brand marketing strategies as more brands are beginning to see it as a viable consumer acquisition channel with low costs and strong returns. Brands are also realizing how influencer marketing improves campaign reach by allowing marketers to target niche consumer groups with native ad content that resonates more deeply and drives quicker conversions.

However, with all of the fanfare around influencer marketing, many brands still struggle to measure return and qualify the results in order to justify the ad spend. This will change as the industry building around influencer marketing is becoming more tech driven.

I look at the phenomenon of influencer marketing as a three-wave evolution that began with the birth of the social media influencer. This first wave was sparked by consumers, who first- and perhaps coincidentally- demonstrated the viability of native advertising on social media by sharing new products, trends and brands with their friends and fans, thus introducing these brands to new audiences.

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by Steve Hall    Jul-14-15    
Topic: Opinion



12 Steps to Increasing Conversions by 25%

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If your goal is more conversions, there are steps you can take right now to make that goal a reality. The good news is, most of these actions don't don't require any investment other than time. Here are 12 tips that can help you achieve as much as 25 percent more conversions.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-26-15    
Topic: Tools



Gross: Guy Pops A Giant Zit on His Face And Then Eats It

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Working with Innocean, Dallas-based candy store Atomic Candy is out with a very Skittles-like commercial in which a guy, looking at himself in the mirror, realizes, he's got a zit. But the zit is actually a piece of candy.

He squeezes the candy, it falls into the sink and then he eats it. If your stomach isn't turning at this point then you probably should watch the rest of the commercial. Because it's like the biggest zit explosion you've ever seen.

So, yea, it's just a candy commercial but still.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-22-15    
Topic: Commercials



Headed to Cannes? Here's Your Handy Beach Map

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In case you don't feel like attending sessions at Cannes like a good delegate and would rather spend your days on the beach soaking up the sun and stealing glances at those young, up-and-coming creatives who are more than happy to frolic on the beach as if it were Spring Break, Italian agency, Aylene Gardider has you covered.

Just as they did last year, the agency is out with a map of the beaches in Cannes so you can be sure you're meeting up in the right spot. Feel free to download the full sized version below.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-17-15    
Topic: Industry Events



As You Consider Attending SXSW 2016, Here's What Was Awesome About SXSW 2015

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It's sort of passe to talk about how much SXSW has changed over the years because, well, it has and there's no going back. If you feel the need to reminisce or wallow in the past, you can read this, this, this, this and this.

Or you can put you mind in a more upbeat mode and read 6 Reasons Why SXSW is Still Awesome, written after last year's SXSW.

In any case, let's move on. Did you go to SXSW this year? What did you think? Did you get out of it what you expected? More? Less?

Let's take a look at some of what transpired during this year's SXSW Interactive.

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by Steve Hall    Jun-15-15    
Topic: SXSW



6 Best Practices for Omnichannel Marketers

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It wasn't too long ago that the consumer in the market for new home exercise equipment would visit her local department or sporting goods store to test out the options and compare the prices. Maybe she would buy a new treadmill on the spot, or perhaps she would first talk to friends for recommendations, or read some reviews in a magazine like Consumer Reports. Once convinced of the right make, model, and price, she would pull out her credit card or checkbook and make a purchase.

Fast-forward to 2015, where the buying landscape couldn't be more different. Thanks to the Internet as a whole, social media, online reviews, the proliferation of online retailers, and the growth of web-based behemoths like Amazon, the same consumer takes a decidedly different approach when buying exercise equipment (or buying anything for that matter). Add laptops, mobile devices, and smartphones to the mix and you create a selling environment that includes everything from bricks-and-mortar sales to website purchases to smart TV shopping.

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by Steve Hall    May-27-15    
Topic: Opinion



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