Blog Archives

You’re on the First Page of Google. Now What?

By Josh Cline

As online marketing continues to integrate with traditional practices, it is easy for newcomers to fall into a common trap: believing that reaching the first page – or even the top search-result – of Google will guarantee success. But the search engine is not a digital version of a Golden Ticket.

After months of grueling work, your keyword research, on-site optimization, and search-engine marketing have paid off, and you are now near the top of Google’s search-results — congratulations! Your website’s traffic should start to skyrocket. But do not break out the champagne just yet. Executives and managers who are just starting to understand and incorporate so-called “inbound-marketing” techniques often — and understandably — confuse the means with the ends.

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How Social Media is Just a Form of Public Relations

By Josh Cline

Social media is a tool. It is a channel, like a newspaper or radio; a media channel and a communication channel. What does this mean for public relations practitioners?

One of the main reasons to hire a public relations agency is because they have the connections with the media, industry-knowledge and know how to communicate a message. They aren’t just relying on a media database, but have real relations or the know-how to build others. PR practitioners gain these relationships primarily through networking, whether it’s a cocktail party, industry event, or trade show. Public relations agencies succeed because of their personal relationships with journalists, other influencers and new relationships they know how to cultivate.

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Determining if social media is for you

By Josh Cline

Some people are still asking the wrong questions. Some companies are still hiring people with the goal of “determining if social media is right for you?” But today, what is “social media” (a term that many despise — no true “social media guru” would ever actually call themselves that). Today, all media is social.

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How to reach your audience

By Josh Cline

It’s not about Facebook or Twitter. It’s not about the newspaper or radio either. It’s about reaching your audience, wherever they are. When planning a marketing campaign, it’s wrong to say “We want an ad in the paper” or “We want a Facebook page.” Before determining the channel, determine your audience and where your audience is.

One of the first steps of a POST analysis is determining the “People” – your audience, as well as what their usage habits are. The first step is seeing how the audience uses media. If you’re targeting college students, use social networks. If you are reaching out to business travelers, consider ratings and reviews sites. Senior donors? Try a print newsletter or mailing. Single moms, middle aged women? Perhaps a Facebook game. Business person? Maybe an e-mail newsletter.

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Understanding your Marketing ROI

By Josh Cline

Much as been written of the ROI of social media. While the value of strategic marketing should already be known, the ROI of online marketing should be recognized. Ultimately, with some still scared of technology, the ROI of social media might be as simple as “Will you be around in 5 years?

What is the ROI of a marketing campaign? Unfortunately, there are some that still do not ask that question. However, in order to answer that question, one must first talk about marketing strategy.

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Marketing Momentum: The Stages of a Digital Marketing Campaign

By Josh Cline

One of the first things clients want when they hear “online” or “social media” is “viral.” But, the first thing I tell clients is that “viral is an outcome, not a strategy.” Online marketing – whether it is social media, e-mail, web, apps, or, ideally, an integrated marketing campaign – is a long-term effort filled with community and relationship building: not a campaign to start and stop at whim.

Unfortunately, there are too many out there selling ‘social media snake oil’ and promising to make your content go viral. “Viral” however is the direct outcome of creating quality relationships, having a worthwhile product/service, and being open and authentic – over time.

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Twitter Crisis Management: Crisis Time

Every PR crisis management expert will tell you the three elements of good crisis response: be quick, be accurate and be consistent. These elements are critical. Twitter and the “real-time web” is one important channel that is immediate. The rest is up to you.

Act now

As soon as your alarm bells ring it is “go time.” Whether your response is denial, apology, excuse, attack or justification, it must be quick and relentless. As long as you’re not a politician, forget about the “no comment”.  When your organization’s reputation is on the line, you have no excuse but to defend it. Sometimes tweeting about a slander can even send your own followers to fight for you (that is, of course, if you have strong rapport with your followers). Publicizing a slander against you (say, in a blog) gives you more credibility and shows you are confident and have nothing to hide.

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Twitter Crisis Management: Give Value

Twitter is about sharing, and sharing means you have to give something valuable to get something valuable. Contribute to conversations, share your thoughts and be part of the community. Be interesting or at least try to be compelling enough for people to care. And of course – don’t use corporate babble. Talk like a human to reach humans. Be real. Be authentic. Give value.

Make them part of it

Tweet about your work process, give some insight to what it is you do and what drives you. Tweet accomplishments sparingly and make your followers be part of the experience and the cause. Speak and respond to those who are interested. Share and you will be shared.

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