Where are digital marketing dollars being spent?

April 20, 2012

Wondering where people are expending their efforts (and money) when it comes to digital marketing?

Take a look at this chart — it’s pretty telling. (This chart is part of the 2012 edition of The SoDA Report, from the Society of Digital Agencies.  More on the SoDa Report here.)

As you can see, when marketing decision makers were asked (in the where they were going to focus their attention, in terms of earned and owned media — they had some very definite opinions, with Word of Mouth and Blogger Outreach topping the charts.

Those surveyed said that they were continuing to shift their spending from traditional, expensive tactics toward digital—especially earned media —though it’s rarely a one-to-one exchange. According to the SoDA Report, a dollar or euro lost from TV and print budgets becomes 20 cents of digital.

While only 22% of client marketers are forecasting increases in traditional media spends in 2012, 50% projected an increase in paid digital media and two thirds say they expect to increase earned digital media efforts this year.

How do their answers align with what you’re doing at your place?



What are the digital jobs of the future?

February 27, 2012

digitaltalent SODA
What digital talent will be in demand down the road?

Wondering where the marketing and digital marketing jobs will be down the road?

Look no further than this chart.

As you can see, content creators/writers are in huge demand right now.  With the push to creating quality content, I don’t suspect this need will diminish any time soon.

I’m pleased and relieved to see that strategic planning/thinking is still in demand as well.  I worry that too many companies will leap without looking simply because digital/social is easy and/or cheap.  It doesn’t matter how fast you can climb a ladder if you’ve propped it against the wrong building.

Whether you’re a college student trying to decide how to direct your studies, a marketing professional thinking about course corrections or you’re responsible for hiring within your agency or corporation — this is your future.  Better introduce yourself.

Note: This chart is part of the 2012 edition of The SoDA Report, from the Society of Digital Agencies.*

*If you haven’t heard of SoDA — the Society of Digital Agencies was created five years ago to advance the industry through best practices, education and advocacy. Their membership is made up of digital agencies and production companies throughout the world, on five continents in 24 countries.
They also have a Peer Collaboration Group program with 350 members across 12 disciplines.
For the last four years, they’ve done this research and produced the SoDA report. (click here to download the entire 96 page 2012 report)
In terms of who participate in the research: 53% of the participants were marketers representing corporate brands (25%), consumer brands (30%) and other related industries (45%). The remaining 47% were creative service leaders from traditional agencies (23%), digital agencies (64%) and production companies (13%).
Over 76% of respondents were key decision makers and influencers (CMOs, senior executives, VPs and directors) with annual marketing budgets ranging from under US$1M to over US$100M and whose key markets are North America (57%), Europe (19%) and APAC (11%).


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How tweet chats work

February 22, 2012

Have you wanted to attend a Tweet Chat but weren’t sure how it worked?  You are not alone, my friend.  Let me see if I can boil it down.

Tweet Chat:  A moderated discussion that happens on Twitter.  They range from business focused topics like leadership (like the one led by Lisa Petrilli and Steve Woodruff) and blogging (like the mega popular BlogChat led by Mack Collier) to crime news and gardening.  And everything in between.

Here’s how it works:  You find a tweet chat that interests you by scrolling through the list kept on Google Docs or one of your favorite bloggers might mention (or host) one.

Each chat has its own hashtag (like #blogchat) so you can follow along.  To participate — you can do that in several ways.

1) Within Twitter itself, you can click on the #hashtag and you’ll see all the recent tweets using that hashtag.  But if it’s a popular one, that gets crazy in a hurry.

2) You can use a tool like Tweetchat.com (there are plenty of others too) to follow the conversation (by entering the chat’s hashtag, it searches for and scrolls the conversation for you).  You can just listen or jump in.

If you’re going to participate, there are some expectations:

  • Use the hashtag if you’re asking a question of the moderator (or another chatter)
  • If you’re responding to something that was said, use the person’s Twitter handle and the hashtag (if what they said is too long to RT and respond)
  • Retweeting is welcomed and encouraged to invite your network into the conversation
  • It’s not cool to go off topic and use the hashtag
  • It’s even less cool to use a chat to market your wares

That’s it.  Very simple and a great way to extend your Twitter network, smarts and typing skills!

Looking for some chats that might be up your alley?  Check out this list: 25 twitter chats every entrepreneur must know.



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Put your email auto response to work

February 11, 2012

With the volume of emails we all get every day, we can’t afford to let our emails go unattended.  We don’t want the people who email us to think we’re ignoring them, so if we’re going to be out of the office — most of us use some sort of an automated response system.

You know what I’m talking about:  “I will be out of the office until Tuesday, March 3rd.  If you need assistance, please call my co-worker Biff at 555-123-4567.”

And that does the trick.  They don’t freak out if we don’t answer within an hour or two.

But if you’re at a conference, spending the day shooting a TV spot or attending a strategic planning retreat (or doing anything else that establishes your expertise) why not let your your email auto response do some marketing for you?

I’ve spent the last couple days conducting a workshop.  During the workshop, I emailed a link to the participants and got this back from one of them:

I am attending a conference of leading PR/MarCom agencies from around the country to discuss new MarCom trends and techniques and will be out of the office through Friday, February 10th. 

I will be checking my email periodically.

Brilliant!  What did this auto response tell this person’s email senders?

  • That he’s considered one of the leading PR/MarCom agency professionals in the country (otherwise, he wouldn’t have been invited)
  • That he’s honing his skills and staying current
  • That he believes in investing in his professional development

Who wouldn’t want to work with him?  We certainly get a better sense of who he is and what he’s about than if he’d used the standard language.

Often we think marketing has to be complicated, expensive or done over a long period of time.  But every once in awhile — it can be just this simple.

How could you leverage this idea?

~ Drew


Stock photo courtesy of www.BigStockPhoto.com

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You cannot ignore Google+ for your business

January 10, 2012

Google Plus Logo
Google+ cannot be ignored

When Google+ emerged last summer, people’s reactions were to be expected.  The early adopters were all over it. But for most people who were already suffering from social media fatigue — their response was “oh no…not another site for me to maintain!”

And many people simply opted out, not wanting to use/try yet another social networking site.  All along, I have been saying that it  simply could not be ignored. (like here)

Let’s look at time line for those of you who aren’t familiar with how this played out.

  • Summer 2011 — Google+ launches
  • 16 days later — Google+  reaches 10 million users (Facebook took 852 days, Twitter took 780)
  • November 2011 — Google+ launches business pages
  • January 2012 — Google+ has just added three new features to its search giant (see below)
  • Do you think they don’t have the next move already planned?

This newest set of features makes personalization of Google search a given.  Specifically, how/who you are connected to on Google+ will impact your search results. Again — more ammo for the argument that businesses simply cannot ignore how this is changing the world of search. Here is a quick overview of the three new features. (email readers, click here to view video)


Personal Results

These results enable you to find information only pertaining to you and your connections. They show photos and updates from Google+ that include what you’ve shared and what has been shared with you there.

You will be the only one who can access this exact data.

Profiles in Search

These results, also shown in autocomplete and regular search results, will display Google+ profiles of people you know or others you may be interested in following when you search for people’s names.

Once searched, you’ll also have the choice (if you’re signed in and you use it) to add Google+ users to your Circles from directly within the search results.

People and Pages

These results show you profiles or Google+ business pages on the right-hand side of the results page when you search a specific topic or key word/s.

I don’t think I have to paint the picture for you.   Who do you think is going to get a higher search ranking — a business with or without Google+ content?

And take my word on it — this is just the beginning.  You simply cannot ignore Google+.  (Go build your Google+ business page here)

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Beverage start up counts on QR codes

June 23, 2011

Will we start to see QR codes on pkg goods?

Starts ups are tough…especially consumer goods start ups.  In the crowded energy drink space, you have to be pretty innovative to push beyond getting someone’s attention and converting that to a purchase.

So HYDRIVE Energy, the maker of upstart HYDRIVE Enhanced Water Energy Drinks, decided to try something different.  On two of their products  – decaf and extra strength, they’ve added a QR code.

When scanned, the QR codes take consumers to a mobile site offering a constantly changing array of wacky fitness trivia, contests, free prizes and product information.

They worked with a group of digital marketing students at Harvard Business School to create a QR code strategy for the brand. One of the things that makes this campaign unique is that when you scan the code, you’re delivered to the site which delivers fresh and varied content each time.

By offering different content with each scan, they’ve replicated the “under-the-cap” promotional experience often used in traditional soft drink marketing but in a digital way.   According to HYDRIVE’s director of marketing, their goal is to create a more interactive and intimate relationship with our product.

The HYDRIVE QR site features four sections; a changing daily trivia fact or a free prize; a monthly sweepstakes; a link to product information; and a link to Facebook. The social media component is an important strategic initiative for HYDRIVE as they continue to build it out.

You can check it out by finding the nearest location to buy a HYDRIVE Energy here or just click here to go right to the site.

What do you think — good use of QR codes?

Note:  The folks at HYDRIVE sent me a couple bottles so I could try the QR codes.
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Apple is the most valuable brand

May 15, 2011


Screen shot 2011 05 11 at 6 54 37 PM

In 2010, global technology brand Apple surpassed Google to become the most valuable brand in the world, according to “Brandz Top 100″ from Millward Brown and Optimor. Apple increased in value by 84% to $153.3 billion.




Interestingly, technology companies took four of the top five places, including the first three, on this year’s list. They include 2009’s top brand Google coming in second with a value of about $111.5 billion (down 2%), IBM falling from second to third even as its value rose 17% to $110.8 billion, McDonald’s jumping from number six to number four as its value grew 23% to $81 billion, and Microsoft slipping from number four to number five, with 2% growth to $78.2 billion.

Take that HP Slate and Lenovo’s IdeaPad.


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Build your digital footprint in a hub and spoke model

April 18, 2011

Screen shot 2011 04 18 at 8 14 36 AM
The hub/spoke model. Click on it to enlarge.

Whether you’re a Fortune 500 company, a small retail shop or an individual consultant trying to be found — everyone is concerned with being findable on the web today.

And with good reason.  It’s the 21st century — so when we want to find anything or anyone, we Google it.  Being findable in relevant search queries matters to businesses (and people) big and small.  And to achieve that — you need a strategy.

We recommend to MMG clients that we build their web of content creation in a hub/spoke model.  You need to have a core or hub for all of your social media activity.  One place that is the repository for your core content.   In my case — it’s  this blog.  It’s home base — containing the bulk of the content I have created.  It’s where I link out from and it’s where I want people to ultimately land if they’re searching for marketers, marketing agencies in the midwest, Iowa advertising agencies etc.

You can have lots of spokes…but they all build off the same hub.  If you look at the diagram I’ve created for my own model (clearly not an art director!) you’ll see that both online and offline activities all point back to the blog.

The logic behind this is pretty straightforward:

  • You want to point all your links and backlinks to the same place — the spot you want Google to drive people to.
  • You don’t want to spread out the Google juice — you want it concentrated on your hub location. The more links and juice pointed at the same place, the higher your ranking.
  • You want people to find your best thinking, depth of knowledge and most authoritative voice — typically a blog or website.
  • You want the search engines to drive people to where they can actually connect with you — human to human.

I’m not suggesting for a minute that everyone should have a blog.  You know I don’t believe that to be true.  So for some businesses, it might be your corporate website.  It might be your Facebook fan page.  It might be a Squidoo lens page.

You need to look at how/where you’re going to be spending your time online and then carefully build your strategy around choosing a home base and building off of it.

Don’t dilute your online efforts by not having a smart strategy about how and where you want to be found.

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3 blogging tools worth exploring

April 5, 2011

Screen shot 2011 04 02 at 9 44 12 AM
A BackTweets’ email (click to see full size)




This handy tool (www.backtweets.com) tracks any and all tweets that drive back to your blog, whether they mention you, your blog’s name or even your URL.  That’s right — if they use a shortened URL, you’ll still get the info.

I’ve subscribed by e-mail (it was free) so that every day, I get a simple report that shows all the tweets that drove people to my blog.  I get a better sense of what topics draw more attention and sharing.

Your blog to Kindle

This is a simple and free way to publish your blog so people can subscribe via their Kindle. Just go to Kindle Publishing and set up an account.

From there, you just add some basic blog information (RSS feed, title, description etc.) and your bank information (so they can pay you when someone subscribes) and within 48 hours, you’re available 24/7 on the e-reading giant.


Zemanta is a free plugin for your browser that looks over your shoulder and as you’re typing, it’s suggesting relevant links and photos that would enhance your blog posts.   You can embed links, add a short list of related posts at the bottom of your own post and place their photos where you’d like them to appear.

Even more interesting — when you use Zemanta, it automatically puts your post into their related articles database…and offers your content to other bloggers to link to.  So it goes full circle.


These are three of my favorite tools.  What tools can you share with me and my readers that are among your favorites?

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