30 de abril de 2011

4 Ways Behavioral Targeting Is Changing the Web

We’ve already seen signs of it — targeted ads on Facebook, suggested people to follow on Twitter, even Google Instant seems to know what you’re thinking — but how is behavioral targeting changing the Internet at large?
Here’s how behavioral targeting works: Targeting companies establish an agreement with a publisher, who puts a piece of code on his website. (That publisher must have a clearly stated policy for the consumer to opt out from having data collected.) Then, when you’re browsing the web, the site will put a cookie on your browser, which populates as you surf. (Though one interviewee, ContextWeb, targets based on content and not cookies.)
Now that your browser has a cookie, the targeting begins. Data points amass as you click your way from site to site, taking note of what you buy, what you read and what you search for. The more time goes on, the more data is collected. Back in 2003, we had audience targeting, which assigned people to various demographics and targeted these demographics based on age, gender and location. Now, with more data, the targeting can be — and is — much more dynamic, and can gauge your interests and preferences. Companies that specialize in targeting can nearly promise more ad engagement by targeting people who have indicated -– through their behavioral patterns on the web -– that they might be interested in the product at hand. It’s a more costly form of advertising, but the conversion rate can offset the increased cost.
All of the data that has been collected by targeters has huge implications for the Internet of the future. We spoke with three experts in the field of behavioral targeting to discuss the biggest effects that targeting will have on the web as we know it.

1. Your Internet Experience Will Be More About You

You know how Amazon suggests items that might interest you, based on the items you’ve perused? That’s how the entire Internet could be soon. With systems tracking your cursor and keeping tabs on your browsing history, the Internet can get to know you better — and be smarter than ever. In fact, Amazon’s algorithm is a paragon of excellence for targeters.
“Amazon does a fantastic job at making the Amazon experience reliable for the consumer. The entire experience is relevant and more efficient,” says Jeff Hirsch, president and CEO of AudienceScience.
And since data collection has been ongoing for years at Amazon, the data points and algorithms have been refined. Years ago, a man might buy a princess outfit for his 3-year-old niece and then be presented with ads for toddler items the next few times he logs on. That doesn’t happen anymore, says Ted Shergalis, founder and chief strategy officer of [x+1]. “As targeters accrue more data and more sophisticated algorithms, they can lessen the impact of statistical outliers,” he says.
And what’s been done to the algorithm at Amazon is happening all over the web. Shergalis cites the advent of Google Instant as a huge shift in the web’s evolution — results are repositioning information in a way that is more focused on the query. “Marketers are hoping to do that with all of their work,” he says, meaning that the web might be able to tell you what you’re looking for before you even finish typing it.
Hirsch jokes that in 10 years, we may very well look back and laugh that we ever had to type something into Google to find what we were looking for. “Smarter” and “more useful” are two terms he uses to describe how the targeted curation will affect your web experience.
Best of all for marketers, Hirsch says, is that more relevant content can lead to more engagement.
Rose Ann Haran says ContextWeb, where she is the CMO, strives to “curate content so that we can drive a better experience for people online.” She cites how TV and radio, which now have hundreds of content channels, have evolved so that we can curate what to consume. Technology allows us to hand-pick what programs we’d like to watch and when, along with what kind of music we’d like to listen to. That’s exactly where the web is going, she says. “If you think about the online experience, you can really make the analogy to TV and radio.”

2. The Web Could Change Its Appearance For You

So when the web is all about you, will it also change its interface, too? Shergalis says the data that would drive such customization is available today, but that cost, time and resources are what’s hindering us from getting to that next level.
But, he says, “Consumers are going to come to expect it — you can’t just have a simple, one-size-fits-all experience” for all consumers.
“I think the expectations are increasing. I don’t see people wanting to go back to a less personalized, less social, more irrelevant experience, so I think [the customization] trend is going to continue,” Shergalis adds. Especially because there’s so much more information to gather, and the more consumers share their interests with marketers, the more relevant and suited products will be for us, he says.
Haran cites her own Google homepage — and how radically different it is from her daughter’s page. She says they have different widgets above and below the fold and they each have a different number of ads, based on their preferences. So it’s clear that customization on the web isn’t a farfetched idea, and sites could soon know whether you like a clean page with only two ads, or whether you’re tolerant of up to eight ads.
“The tech is there to be able to provide that unique experience for you,” Haran says. But since there are so many players in the market, only “an orchestrated approach would allow us to do that [targeting].”

3. It Will View You as a Multi-Dimensional Person With Many Interests

So you browsed through ESPN.com — does that mean you’ll only get Nike and Adidas ads from now on? No, because there’s more to you than your interest in sports, and the data knows that. It won’t try to pigeonhole you.
This is especially important because there is concern that curation and customization lead to tunnel vision and ignorance of everything else that’s out there. That’s why behavioral targeters are testing demographics and creating algorithms to determine other interests and speak to a person’s depth and varied interests and give them an element of choice. Such algorithms will help marketers “discover a whole new audience and develop a new understanding” of this dynamic, multifaceted audience, says Hirsch.
As mentioned before, ContextWeb targets based on content. Instead of interpreting CNN as a news site, it breaks it down into retirement, personal finance, education — it’s no longer a one-dimensional perception of the site. And that precision helps to refine the algorithm.
“We’re all multi-dimensional people who consume content in different contexts,” says Tanayia Washington, insights and analytics manager at ContextWeb.

4. It’s Tapping Into Social and Mobile

To some, behavioral targeting seems like an invasion of privacy, though the FTC has taken steps to ensure that privacy is respected (no data is personally identifiable).
But privacy seems to be less of a priority among millennials, who tend to be more accepting of behavioral targeting than their boomer counterparts. Perhaps it’s because they grew up with LiveJournals and were the first generation on Facebook, so they’re used to living their lives out loud. Whatever the reason, the things they broadcast on social networks -– where they are, what they’re buying, who they’re with -– are ripe for the picking by marketers, says Shergalis. By virtue of being on these platforms and being so socially connected, young users are essentially opting in and showing a “willingness to participate” for advertisers and marketers. Therefore, behavioral targeters can take advantage of the wealth of consumer information that’s out in the open on Twitter and Facebook, learning tweet by tweet about the audience it’s trying to reach.
And that’s just one aspect of behavioral targeting’s branching out — targeting will also impact the web experience on iPhones, iPads, Androids and other mobile devices. “You’ll see some pretty amazing innovations … and that will get caught under the heading of behavioral targeting,” says Shergalis.

What’s Next?

When you’re on your laptop, a targeter can assume that you’re the only user. But let’s say there’s a family of four that shares a desktop computer. How do you know if it’s the accountant dad, the PTA mom, the soccer star son or the Bieber-obsessed tween daughter? What if the husband is shopping for the jewelry for the wife, and then the wife starts seeing diamond ads?
“[Data] is not personally identifiable, so in a family of four, you wouldn’t really know who was browsing at what point,” says Hirsch. “There is some efficiency lost in that respect, which is a good example of why consumers need choice.”
In short, behavioral targeting is not perfect, but it has immense potential to change the way we consume and search for information. And this potential is more within reach every day as more data is collected and analyzed. In fact, by the time you read this post, millions more data points already will have been collected, making the Internet that much smarter.

Fuente: http://mashable.com/2011/04/26/behavioral-targeting/

Editor: Alex Rojas writes articles related with technology, social media and marketing. Sponsored by Costa Rica Hotels, Motor de reservas en linea and Travel to Costa Rica 

29 de abril de 2011

HOW TO: Start Marketing on Foursquare

There are more than 8 million users on Foursquare — up from just 1 million a year ago. This explosive growth means one thing — you might want to get your business on Foursquare. After all, Radio Shack reported that the average Foursquare user spends 3.5 times more at its retail shops than the average customer.
The most recent iteration of the location-based app, Foursquare 3.0, expanded the features and made it much easier for businesses to jump on the bandwagon and start marketing. Best of all, it’s free. Foursquare is winning the location-based app game because it has the biggest user base [aside from Facebook Places] and it pleases both parties — customers want to be recognized, and businesses want to know who their biggest fans are. Mashable spoke with Eric Friedman, Foursquare’s director of business development, about how businesses can get started on Foursquare and the various marketing options they have available to them.
“Foursquare works well when a moment of commerce happens,” says Friedman. And commerce is exactly what business owners are looking for. Plus, as smartphones penetrate the U.S market (currently, about a third of U.S. consumers have a smartphone), there will be even more Foursquare users.
“We’re on every single platform that’s out there, so there’s never been a better time for businesses to start using Foursquare,” Friedman says. “There’s no cost, it’s easy and it works.”
Want to get started? Below, Friedman walks Mashable through all of the steps.

Brands With Brick-and-Mortar Locations

“[Small businesses] have the same resources available to them as a super large QSR, an Italian restaurant or a Starbucks, and that’s a really powerful tool,” says Friedman. He’s referring to the Foursquare for Business Merchant Platform, which creates an even playing field for restaurants, retail stores, museums, mom-and-pop shops and other businesses. The owners can claim venues on Foursquare, establish specials and analyze data on Foursquare’s dashboard. Here’s how to do it.

Claim Your Venue

To claim your venue, search for it on Foursquare.com. It’s likely that someone has already created your venue to check into it, and you can claim it by proving that you own it. If you can’t find it or you are opening a new venue, click “Add a new venue to Foursquare,” which is at the bottom of the page. Fill out the information in the wizard. Once all the information is plugged in, your venue page will come up. Click “Claim here” on the venue page.

Foursquare will ask you a few questions about the business (i.e. “Is this a chain?”) and whether you are authorized to claim the venue. Then it will ask how you’d like to verify your ownership — either by phone or by mail. If you verify by phone, Foursquare will call you and provide a 4-digit PIN that you can enter on the site. If you opt to verify by mail, the PIN will be sent via postcard. Once you’re verified, you will also receive a Foursquare window cling so customers know you are a Foursquare-friendly establishment. (Fear not, efficiency lovers: If you have numerous locations, you can verify in bulk.)

Adding Specials

Once you’re verified as the owner of a location, you can use Foursquare’s Merchant Platform to create specials to reward your customers. The method for creating specials is pretty self-explanatory, and the wizard walks you through each step as you create your special. You can have two specials running simultaneously at a given location. Foursquare 3.0 introduced a new group of specials:
  • Swarm Special. A special is unlocked when a certain number of people are checked in. For example, an ice cream store can give away a free scoop of ice cream when 10 people are checked in at once. You can set a limit for how frequently this special can be unlocked so that you don’t give away too much product.
  • Friends Special. A reward for when friends check in together. You can specify how many friends need to be checked in and what they receive for being checked in.
  • Flash Special. A special for the first X people who come at X time. It’s great way to incentivize customers to stop by during your slow hours.
  • Newbie Special. A reward for people who check in to your business for the first time. Offering a reward for a user’s first checkin — even if it’s a small one, like 10% off or a free side dish — is a great way to start a relationship with a new customer.
  • Check-In Special. A reward for every single checkin. Restaurants can offer a free soda or a discount, while retailers might offer a few dollars off a purchase.
  • Loyalty Special. A reward for a user’s third, fifth, seventh checkin — you determine the interval — to incentivize customers to return a few times to cash in on their special. Loyalty specials can be recurring (“every three checkins”) or not (“on your third checkin”).
  • Mayor Special. The mayor is the person who has checked into a venue more than anyone else. In theory, he is your best and most loyal customer. As such, he deserves a prize, whether it’s a discount, a free t-shirt, a beer or a meal on the house. Mayors tend to be proud and protective of their mayorship, and you might even see some turf wars when the mayorship changes hands. You can offer something whenever a new mayor earns the crown, or you can offer a daily reward for the mayor.
Now that you’ve seen the offerings, click the special you’d like to do and fill in the requirements for unlocking the special. Once you finish entering the stipulations and select what venues will feature the special, it will be live (though it won’t show in the “Nearby Specials” filter until a human verifies that the special is legitimate). There are two one-sheets you can print off to explain Foursquare — one for employees, so they know how to recognize a special, and one for customers, so they know how to get in on the Foursquare action.

Dashboard Analytics

Once you’ve claimed a venue, you can access a dashboard of analytics that show how many checkins you’re getting each day, the time of each checkin, as well as a breakdown of the genders and ages of your Foursquare customers. Plus, there are two lists: one of your top visitors in the past 60 days (your most loyal customers), and one of your most recent customers, along with their Twitter handles (so long as they provided that info when they logged into Foursquare). In my experience, only about 25% of people push their Foursquare checkins to Facebook and Twitter, so having access to the Twitter handles of loyal and new customers provides businesses with an opportunity to reach out, follow up and see how a customer’s experience was. That personal touch is likely to bring customers back, and it may also turn that person into an evangelist for your business.
Also, remember that Foursquare is flexible, and you can make changes in real-time. You can run two specials simultaneously at each venue, so experiment and figure out what works for you and your business. With the right campaign, you could actually be saving money — Friedman says several business have stopped advertising altogether, since Foursquare allows them to reach customers for free.

Brand Pages

But not every business has a brick-and-mortar location — look at MTV and Zagat, for example. If your company is a brand without a physical presence — a magazine, a TV channel, a university of a consumer packaged good — you can use Foursquare Pages and Partner Badges to reach consumers.
Foursquare Pages are “a place for brands to have a program and have a cool way to interact with consumers,” Friedman says. The Foursquare website outlines a step-by-step process for setting up a Foursquare Page, which must be done manually (in the future, businesses will be able to create their own brand Pages). Business owners must submit a form; the Foursquare team will reply in about two weeks.
Your Page is highly customizable, and you can have a custom banner to incorporate your logo. The grey box on the right can be populated with information about your brand, along with links back to your own site or to social media sites. And of course there are tips you can leave for your followers so that when they check in to certain places, your tip pops up. The History Channel leaves factoids all over the country at places like New York’s Highline and London’s Tower Bridge, which provide context as you traverse the city. Likewise, Zagat leaves restaurant tips for dishes and cocktails.
Tips can be timeless, or they can be geared to promote an event. For example, The New York Times left tips all over Vancouver for the 2010 Olympics. Tips can be saved to a user’s to-do list, too. The Foursquare site points out tips for crafting good tips:
  • Tips can direct people to a certain place or instruct users to try a certain item. The point of Foursquare is to enhance someone’s experience in a location — if you have some insights, share them.
  • Don’t leave a tip that is obvious — try to share insider information, a secret menu item or a fun tidbit

Brand Badges

Once a brand has a Page, it can also offer badges for Foursquare users. Of course, Foursquare has its own badges that users love unlocking, including:
  • Crunked. Four stops in one night.
  • Photogenic. Checking in to three places with a photo booth.
  • Swarm. Checking in to a place with 50 other people.
But the brand badges are more self-promotional, and they’re unlocked for checking in to places and doing fun things that are relevant to your brand. (Foursquare doesn’t disclose individual badge prices, which can vary, but “$25,000 a month with a multi-month commitment” is typical.) Users must “follow” a brand on Foursquare to unlock badges, some of which include:
  • MOMA — Art Addict. Three checkins at MOMA or PS1 in one month.
  • The Wall Street Journal — WSJ Lunch Box. Two checkins during lunch at a restaurant that’s been reviewed in WSJ’s “Lunch Box” column.
  • Gogo Inflight — Mile High. One checkin while in flight.
New York Magazine recently did a Foursquare integration with its “Where to Eat 2011″ feature. Below each highlighted restaurant, users could add a restaurant tip to their to-do lists. Checking in to 5 of the restaurants in the list earns a user the Where to Eat 2011 badge, which could also unlock discounts and prizes at these restaurants.

Advice From Foursquare

Friedman has some tips for businesses about how to optimize Foursquare:
  • The best kind of Foursquare specials are those that make users feel, well, special. You don’t need to give a discount and lose your margins. Offering exclusive access to a sample sale or a special dessert that is only available for Foursquare users is a great way to get people coming back and checking in. Plus, not offering discounts means you can attract and maintain customers without affecting your bottom line.
  • Remember to utilize the fine print when you’re filling out your special.
  • Use Foursquare to grow your business — run a special during your slow times to keep a steady flow of customers all day.
  • Make sure you train your staff on how to recognize and reward Foursquare users.
  • Remember to set an end date for a campaign if it’s a limited-time offer or a one-day special.
Fuente: http://mashable.com/2011/04/27/how-to-foursquare/

Editor: Alex Rojas writes articles related with technology, social media and marketing. Sponsored by Costa Rica Hotels, Motor de reservas en linea and Travel to Costa Rica 

    28 de abril de 2011

    6 Tips for Getting the Most out of Foursquare

    The Interwebs are buzzing, and by now you’ve probably heard about a social network called Foursquare that’s apparently a big deal. So you cracked open your smartphone (or at least, gingerly removed it from its dock) and downloaded the Foursquare app. After signing up, you scrolled through the tabs and figured out how to “check in” at whatever restaurant, bar, store, or train station you happened to be at. And then you said, “Now what?”
    Just like Twitter, at first glance Foursquare may seem a bit inert. To really understand what Foursquare’s voracious user base is so excited about, you’ve got to start using it as more than just a catalog of your GPS-pinpointed whereabouts. Here are six tips for squeezing all the juicy social goodness out of this app that’s sweeping the social media world off its feet:

    1. Add Friends… Carefully

    Foursquare people image
    Using Foursquare by yourself is like playing tennis alone. The fun lasts about three seconds. In geekier terms, it’s like having zero followers and following no people on Twitter. To get value from Foursquare, your friends need to be in on the action, too. Then you can use the app to meet up, share tips, and find stuff to do with when you’re bored, among other things.
    The caveat: don’t add people you aren’t really friends with. That’s because Foursquare friends can see your GPS location, so by adopting a Myspace-style friends-with-everyone practice, you’re inviting a host of potential weirdos to meet up with you every time you check in somewhere. As founder Harry Heyman puts it, “Do you really want them to know where you are all the time?”

    Foursquare stats image
    Unlike Facebook and other social networks, friend count doesn’t show up as a profile stat. In Foursquare, you get rewarded for things you do, not people you add, so there’s really little incentive to add strangers willy nilly.
    However, when you check into a location, you’ll be able to see who else is there, which could be an opportunity to meet like-minded people and make new friends in real life!

    2. Complete Your Profile

    In order to become mayor of a venue (the user who checks in the most in the past two months carries this title), you must have a profile pic. “No faceless dictatorships on Foursquare!” Heyman says.

    Foursquare settings image
    Additionally, if you link up your Foursquare account with Twitter, your profile URL will show up on Foursquare instead of just a user number. You’ll be able to send notifications to Twitter when you check in places, earn badges, or take over as Mayor somewhere – either automatically or whenever you deem fit.

    3. Add Shouts to Your Checkins

    Instead of simply tagging yourself in different spots around the city, keep your friends in the loop by adding short messages, or shouts. You can use these to let people know they’re invited to join you, for example, or to announce what’s happening at the venue you’ve arrived at.

    4. Leave Tips and Build Your Top 12 List

    Foursquare top 12 image
    After adding a few friends, you may notice messages pop up when you check in at or near venues your buddies have been to. These are tips your friends have left. Suggestions like “try the grilled cheese” from people you trust can go a lot further than the faceless reviews you read on other city guide apps.
    Pay it forward by leaving tips yourself. This not only enhances the day-to-day experience, but helps you build your own personal top 12 list. Heyman explains, “Everyone knows something a little special. Put it out there so your friends will see it if they check in to your favorite spot.”

    5. Manage Your Push Notifications so You Don’t Go Crazy

    Foursquare check in image
    If you use Foursquare on an iPhone, you can get pinged – without getting an SMS charge from your carrier – whenever a friend checks in or shouts. However, all those messages can still be annoying if you have a lot of friends (or one friend that checks in obscenely often), don’t fret: Foursquare lets you configure ping settings for individual friends at foursquare.com/manage_friends
    You can also turn pings off entirely, either for the night or until further notice. Personal example: My wife used to go crazy when my friends would check in at 3 AM (which is often). Once I discovered the ping management feature, she lifted her Fourquare embargo, meaning I can once again go to bed with my iPhone in the same room.

    6. Stake Your Claim

    Now that you’ve got things down, it’s time to get competitive. Every popular venue has a mayor — the person who has visited the most in a given time period, and mayors are often entitled to perks like free coffee or sandwiches, depending on the place. At the very least, mayorship equals bragging rights, and many a Foursquare user has been unwittingly caught in an epic mayor battle.
    Going for mayor at your favorite spot encourages you to get out more, which is rarely a bad thing. Plus, new friendships are often happy byproducts of mayor wars.
    “Curious how close to being mayor you are at your favorite spot?” Heyman asks. “Hover your mouse over the current user’s pic on the venue page and it will show you how many times they’ve been there in the past two months. See how close you are to claiming the throne.”


    Foursquare is a social network that actually gets you out of your cave and into the real world with other living, breathing people. Once you nail a few basics down, it can add exponential value to your social life. Oh, and did I mention the free sandwiches?

    Fuente: http://mashable.com/2009/12/10/fourquare-tips/

    Editor: Alex Rojas writes articles related with technology, social media and marketing. Sponsored by Costa Rica Hotels, Motor de reservas en linea and Travel to Costa Rica 

    27 de abril de 2011

    15 consejos para optimizar el uso corporativo de Xing, Twitter y Facebook

    Cada vez más empresas caen rendidas al amplio abanico de posibilidades que pone a su disposición el denominado social media marketing. Muchas se estrenan en esta nueva modalidad de la mano de Xing, Twitter y Facebook, pero la entrada en estos canales no tiene por qué ser sinónimo de éxito. La revista Acquisa proporciona las pistas para triunfar en estas tres redes sociales con los siguientes 15 consejos:
    1. Determinar con claridad los objetivos que se marca la empresa al embarcarse en Xing. En este sentido, conviene identificar previamente a aquellos contactos y grupos que más útiles pueden resultar a la compañía en términos corporativos.
    2. Mostrar un comportamiento discreto y mostrar interés por otros miembros.
    3. Regirse por el principio de “dar y recibir”. Cuando alguien nos pide ayuda, ese alguien puede convertirse en el futuro en un contacto valioso.
    4. Dar prioridad a nuestros contactos y ofrecerles un tratamiento personalizado en función de su propia importancia.
    5. No desperdiciar fuerzas en vano. Sólo los contactos verdaderamente importantes merecen nuestra total atención.
    1. Elegir un nombre adecuado para el perfil de la compañía en Twitter, a ser posible el mismo nombre de la firma, si es que éste se encuentra disponible.
    2. Personalizar el perfil de la empresa en Twitter, mediante un logo, un fondo apropiado, etc.
    3. Twittear sólo información interesante y relevante. El mero “autobombo” no interesa a nadie.
    4. Publicar tweets con regularidad (al menos tres a la semana).
    5. Incluir el link a la web de la compañía en el perfil de ésta en Twitter.
    1. El nombre de la página de fans de una compañía en Facebook debe corresponder con su nombre real.
    2. Dar a conocer la página de fans entre los trabajadores y círculos de conocidos de la compañía para ganar así en número de seguidores.
    3. Asegurarnos de que la página de fans de nuestra compañía en Facebook es fácilmente localizable en los motores de búsqueda.
    4. Generar contenidos interesantes para el usuario y fomentar la discusión.
    5. Publicar actualizaciones con regularidad.

    Fuente: http://www.marketingdirecto.com/actualidad/social-media-marketing/15-consejos-para-optimizar-el-uso-corporativo-de-xing-twitter-y-facebook/

    Editor: Alex Rojas writes articles related with technology, social media and marketing. Sponsored by Costa Rica Hotels, Motor de reservas en linea and Travel to Costa Rica

    26 de abril de 2011

    6 Top Most Effective Link Building Tools

    Social Media and Internet Marketing Training
    Review Crushers by Kathy Baka
    Every webmaster and Internet marketer who is serious about building their online business wants to drive more traffic to their website. Everyone knows that the closer to the top in search engine results the site is, the more visits by Internet users. But how do you get that unattainable place on the first page in the search engine? The answer is building links. Link building is the process of getting links pointing to your site from other websites. The more incoming links to your site, the more value it contains for the search engines. The links should also be of high quality. In this review I would like to suggest the tools you should use to build high quality links pointing to your website:
    1. Articles. Write your blogs & articles about the products or services you offer on your websites and submit them to all directories. The whole idea behind this is to include a link to your site into every blog/article. Each is listed in many directories has the potential to build thousands of links for you everyday.
    2. Bookmarking. Another great idea is bookmarking all your sites .Every time you bookmark a website, it is linking back to your page. You can bookmark the web pages with your blogs & articles with popular bookmark sites, for example digg.com and del.icio.us, are the sites most common today. By adding social bookmark links to your articles will also make it easy for readers to save and share the content. You can use a Social Bookmarking Tool to bookmark your blogs & articles with more than 50+ social bookmarking sites.
    3. Forums. Just making a comment or asking a question at a forum related to your business or leave the posts on them. Include the link to your site into your signature and every post you make will become an inbound link again to your site.
    4. Blogs. An off site blog is a great means for building links and gaining traffic because every post you make is a separate web page. Link to your website and you’ll have some good inbound links.
    5. Social networking. Social networking link building has become a phenomenon and the more friends you make when you set up your profile the more traffic to your website.
    6. Web directories. Manual Directory Submission & Directory Submission Software are still one of the best ways to get natural quality links for your website. The more directories you list your website with, the more inbound links you will generate. The best way to submit the site to web directories is to find a directory submitter tool.
     Fuente: http://reviewcrushers.com/archives/25

    Editor: Alex Rojas who writes articles related with technology, social media and marketing. Sponsored by Costa Rica Hotels, Motor de reservas en linea and Travel to Costa Rica

    25 de abril de 2011

    Cómo conseguir miles de fans en tu página de Facebook a un coste muy bajo

    Esta es uno de los misterios mejor guardados por ciertas páginas en las que ves crecer su número de fans de una forma increible, pero realmente no hay ningún misterio, sino simplemente técnicas y estrategias bien aplicadas que hacen que vayas incrementando progresivamente el número de seguidores de tu página de fans con unos costes muy reducidos. ¿Quieres conocer cómo hacerlo?
    Para conseguir incrementar de manera notable nuestro número de seguidores vamos a recurrir a poner en marcha una campaña de Facebook Ads, esos anuncios de pago por click que aparecen a la derecha de la pantalla.

    Creación de una Landing Page adaptada al objetivo

    El primer y más fundamental paso es crear una landing page adaptada al tipo de acción que pretendes realizar, y con ello quiero remarcar que NUNCA debemos enviar a la gente que no es fan al muro sino directamente a nuestra landing page adaptada para la acción que vamos a realizar.
    Ten en cuenta que uno de los factores que definirán el éxito o fracaso de tu campaña en Facebook será la landing page que hagas, y por lo tanto será la responsable directa de que la inversión económica realizada tenga un ROI positivo o negativo.
    Para conseguir que una landing page sea efectiva debe ofrecer a los potenciales fans un incentivo para hacer click en “Me gusta”, ya sea entrar en un sorteo, un cupón descuento… o cualquier otra cosa que realmente les pueda interesar.
    Y como siempre medir la eficacia de las acciones, para lo que podemos usar los embudos de conversion de Google Analytics, que nos dirán el % de usuarios que se convierten en Fans en relación con los que han entrado a la página.

    Optimizar las campañas de Facebook Ads

    ¿Cómo pagar menos por cada click en los anuncios de Facebook? El coste de cada click depende de la calidad de los resultados, y es que a mayor calidad, menores precios, por lo que obtendremos más clicks con el mismo presupuesto y con ello seguimos bajando nuestro coste por click.
    Para conseguir optimizar al máximo nuestra campaña, podemos basar la estrategia en la llamada “Prueba A/B”, es decir, crear dos anuncios con alguna variación entre ellos, ya sea en el texto o imagen, dejarlos funcionando unos días y pasado este tiempo el que peores resultados tenga lo sustituimos por otro nuevo con otra diferencia y volvemos a hacer lo mismo.
    De esta manera conseguimos con el tiempo ir optimizando nuestra campaña en Facebook Ads y con ello bajando los costes.
    Como referencia, piensa que la diferencia de costes entre un CTR (ratio de clicks por impresiones)  de 0,8% y 0,9% puede ser de más de un 25%, por lo que está claro que la optimización es imprescindible en cualquier acción.

    Resultados reales de una campaña en Facebook Ads

    En las siguientes imágenes quiero que te fijes en los resultados obtenidos en una campaña en Facebook Ads, donde aproximadamente con una inversión de unos 265€ (se ha realizado una conversión aproximada de libra a euro) han conseguido 3.000 fans, lo que se traduce en un coste de conversión en fan de sólo 0,08 €.


    A la vista de los resultados, ¿te parece rentable una campaña de Facebook Ads? ¿Has tenido alguna experiencia al respecto?
    Vía e imagenes: allfacebook.com
    Fuente: http://www.juanmerodio.com/2010/como-conseguir-miles-de-fans-en-tu-pagina-de-facebook-a-un-coste-muy-bajo/
    Editor: Alex Rojas who writes articles related with technology, social media and marketing. Sponsored by Costa Rica Hotels, Motor de reservas en linea and Travel to Costa Rica 

    24 de abril de 2011

    Los secretos para tener éxito en una campaña de Facebook Ads

    Los anuncios patrocinados de Facebook o Facebook Ads, son esos anuncios que aparecen a la derecha de nuestra página de Facebook y que invitan a seguir a otras páginas.
    Los anuncios de Facebook están basados en un modelo de Coste por Click  (CPC) o Coste por Mil Impresiones (CPM), y a mi personalmente me ha dado mejor resultado el CPC en el que sólo pagas por cada click que recibes.
    Un reciente estudio realizado sobre Facebook Ads, ha dejado al descubierto los patrones de funcionamiento de su algoritmo con lo que vamos a poder utilizarlo para conseguir campañas más efectivas y exitosas.
    En este estudio se han planteado ciertas preguntas a las que han dado respuesta, que serán las claves para conocer el algoritmo de Facebook Ads. Vamos a responderlas una por una:

    ¿Es el CPC inversamente proporcional al CTR?

    La respuesta es que si, al igual que en Google Adwords, es decir, que cuanto mayor sea nuestro CTR (ratio de clicks por impresiones) más bajo será el coste de nuestro click.
    Como podeis ver en el siguiente gráfico para conseguir un CPC en torno a 0,10€ necesitamos conseguir CTR´s superiores al 0,10%.
    Por ejemplo, si comenzamos una campaña en la que estamos pagando el click a 0,70€, por cada incremento del 0,10% en el CTR, nos supondrá un descenso del CPC de 0,21€.

    ¿Cuál es la relación entre el Ratio de Acción y el CTR?

    Llamamos ratio de acción al % de usuarios que ven un anuncio y posteriormente hacen click en Me gusta, y según este estudio se ha podido ver una relación directa con el CTR.
    El CTR será superior al Ratio de Acción porque los clicks incluyen las acciones y las acciones serán alrededor del 50-70% de los clicks, aunque este dato dependerá de cómo estén hechos los anuncios.
    Como recomendación prueba a crear dos versiones de anuncios y monitorizar cuál obtiene mejores resultados.

    ¿Qué relación hay entre las impresiones sociales y las impresiones totales?

    Las impresiones sociales es aquel porcentaje de impresiones en las que ya se han visto también que algún amigo sigue a la página, y su valor no supera el 30% de las impresiones totales, y entre ambas existe relación.

    ¿Un incremento de las Impresiones Sociales supone un descenso del Coste por Conversión?¿Significa esto un aumento del Ratio de Acción?

    Como demuestra el estudio esto no es así por lo que no debemos optimizar los anuncios para impresiones sociales, y tampoco aumenta el ratio de acción.

    Todos estos resultados extraidos del estudio, analizados para nuestras campañas nos ayudarán a optimizarlas mejor y conseguir unos costes más bajos con mejores resultados.
    Vía: allfacebook.com
    Fuente: http://www.juanmerodio.com/tag/facebook-ads/
    Editor: Alex Rojas who writes articles related with technology, social media and marketing. Sponsored by Costa Rica Hotels, Motor de reservas en linea and Travel to Costa Rica 

    23 de abril de 2011

    5 consejos y trucos para crear mensajes de 140 caracteres en Twitter

    En el año 2009 hice un post en Esquizopedia con algunos consejos básicos para comenzar a escribir actualizaciones en Twitter usando los 140 caracteres de forma más eficiente. Dos años después y con la proliferación de personas que quieren saltarse la limitación principal de Twitter, es hora de retomar el tema y plantearlo nuevamente. El uso exagerado de Twitlonger y Deck.ly por algunas personas y medios de comunicación, tiene muy poco sentido y se puede evitar siguiendo 5 pequeñas y sencillas recomendaciones. Hay forma de saltarse esta limitación al igual que puedes saltarte un limite de velocidad, pero a diferencia de los controles en las autopistas, aquí no llegaras más rápido a ningún lugar. La mayoría de los usuarios detestan estos servicios “alargadores” de tweets.
    Si lo que tienes que decir ocupa más 140 caracteres, no lo digas en Twitter. Abre un blog, ve a Facebook, hablalo en persona. Si aun así, crees que tu mensaje es indispensable para la humanidad usa Twitlonger o Deckly, pocas veces en un mes. Un limite sensato puede ser de 5 tweets al mes. Pero aún así lo mejor es que puedas aprender a resumir, a usar la síntesis, volver a lo básico. Expresar tus ideas en 140 caracteres es un reto muy divertido, pero no lo es todo. Si te gusta escribir y tus ideas son complejas, a mucha gente le encantará leerte en WordPress con tu nuevo blog, es hora de intentarlo. Y mientras estás en Twitter, puedes seguir estos consejos y escribir en 140 caracteres o menos.
    1. Usa un acortador de URLs para compartir un enlace. Es una de las mejores formas de ahorrar espacio en un tweet. Todo enlace que compartes en Twitter debería pasar previamente por un acortador de direcciones, en teoría el mismo Twitter podría hacerlo, pero al final nunca se encuentra completamente integrado con la herramienta, no se cuál es la razón. Los mejores son Bit.ly, Ow.ly, Goo.gl y Cli.gs. Para más información visita URL shortening en la Wikipedia
    2. Usa sinónimos y abreviaciones. Hay muchas oportunidades en las cuales puedes cambiar una simple palabra por un sinónimo que ocupa menos caracteres. Por ejemplo, la palabra “productividad” en algunos casos se puede cambiar por “rendimiento”, de 13 caracteres pasaste a 11. Al usar abreviaciones el ahorro en caracteres es aún mayor. Un ejemplo puede ser usar EE.UU o USA en lugar de Estados Unidos. Es importante que uses el sentido común y no hagas tweets llenos de palabras cortadas o con el nefasto lenguaje SMS. Puedes usar 1 x uno, 2 x dos, x por por, = por igual, + x más, etc por etcetera.
    3. Se simple. En un tweet trata siempre de reflejar una sola idea. Se directo, sin rodeos y no adornes demasiado las cosas. No hace falta (aunque a veces ayuda) que al responder algo incluyas la pregunta original en el tweet, normalmente aparece en la barra derecha, o en un enlace que dice “en respuesta a”. No hay que complicar las cosas, no estas escribiendo un email. No tienes que saludar, despedirte, ni pedir permiso. ¡Ve al grano!
    4. Lee nuevamente el mensaje y revisa que palabras puedes quitar. Cuando escribas un tweet no te preocupes por el limite de caracteres hasta que termines de escribir. Si te pasaste de los 140, lee nuevamente todo, trata de quitar palabras o frases que sean innecesarias. Esto funciona en un porcentaje alto de veces. En casos extremos puedes querer dividir el tweet en dos partes. Si las dos ideas no están conectadas, espera unos minutos para enviar el otro tweet. Por otro lado, si no te gastas los 140 caracteres, no hay ninguna razón para resumir nada.
    5. Comienza nuevamente. Si no hay forma de resumir un tweet, borra todo y comienza nuevamente tratando de usar otras palabras y una redacción distinta. Es bastante extremo hacer esto, pero funciona muy bien. A veces nos empeñamos en algo y no vemos con claridad como simplificar las cosas. Si en el segundo intento no puedes lograrlo es mejor que intentes con un blog.
    Espero que estas recomendaciones te sean de utilidad, si tienes alguna idea para ampliar la lista puedes dejarlo en los comentarios: ¿cómo haces para resumir tus ideas y mensajes en 140 caracteres?. Mi usuario en Twitter es @inti y el del blog es @ALT1040, puedes seguirnos si quieres, por allí también puedes compartir con nosotros alguna sugerencia relacionada.
    Fuente: http://alt1040.com/2011/04/5-consejos-y-trucos-para-crear-mensajes-de-140-caracteres-en-twitter?utm_source=destacadas&utm_medium=banner&utm_campaign=destacadas-v5

    22 de abril de 2011

    6 ways to optimize your business with Foursquare

    What is the hottest mobile trend for 2011? The answer seems obvious. It’s Foursquare, the Twitter of 2011, the leading location-based social network which, with a game aspect, encourages people to explore their neighborhoods via their smartphones, share their visits with local attractions, events and businesses and gives them rewards when they do so.

    Further than that, Foursquare, which in April 2010 reached a million users in just over a year of existence, is driving new online strategies for businesses. It offers them multiple ways to attract customers and gain qualitative and quantitative feedback on their establishment. If you own a “physical” retail business such as a shop, a restaurant, a bar, a hotel, etc,. find 6 ways to use Foursquare in order to boost your sales and increase your customers’ loyalty:
    1. Are you listed?

    First thing to do is visit Foursquare website and search for your business to see if it is already listed. If yes, make sure the information presented is correct and complete. You will need to create a personal account in order to correct your information or add your business.
    2. Offer “Specials”!

    Businesses can offer discounts or special offers to reward people who “check-in” their establishment and develop stronger relationships with their customers. There are many ways to treat your customers with Specials: Some of them are the “check-in specials” that help you reward the customers that reach a specific number of visits or the “frequency-based specials”.
    3. Give tips!

    You can give your customers tips in order to enhance their experience within your business. If you own a restaurant, you can leave tips about the day specials, the best time to come for a drink, the things to do in your establishment, etc. It is definitely a fun and creative way to attract customers!
    4. Learn about your business

    FourSquare offers business analytics that makes it possible for business owners to see how customers interact within their businesses. Additionally it helps them improve their services, since they can read the reviews about what customers like, what tips and comments they leave, understand their needs etc.
    5. Reward Mayors!

    The person who “checks_in” the more frequently in your business in a period of two months, reaches the “Mayor” status. Offer the Mayor something really special to reward him for his loyalty, like “free drinks” or give him the power to be a creative part of your team by choosing the music you will play or a theme for a special night, etc. Not only you will make your Mayor happier, but also you will increase the competition amongst your customers in order to de-throne the current mayor and take his/her place!
    6. Interact with your customers

    Foursquare gives you the opportunity to get closer than ever with your customers, since, not only you will discover your best customer by checking his Mayor status, but through the game, you will interact with all your customers and acquire a friendly reputation.

    Most of all, always keep in mind that Foursquare is a game which gives businesses the chance to be creative and build relationships with the customers. If you adopt the Foursquare philosophy, your customers will inevitably talk about your business and reward you back for your services.
    Fuente: http://www.webseoanalytics.com/blog/6-ways-to-optimize-your-business-with-foursquare/

    21 de abril de 2011

    Is Your Web Site SEO and Social Media Friendly?

    Numerous companies are losing vast amounts of revenue due to their web sites doing poorly in the search engines. Web sites that are not easy to find via search miss out on attracting new customers as well as repeat customers that use Google to navigate sites they already know about. Is the same true for web sites that are not social media friendly?

    People discover new sites through search, but also through recommendations made via email, word of mouth and through social media content. Making a web site social media friendly will facilitate the saving and sharing of content with others, extending reach and facilitating engagement.

    Consumers find new content via social networking sites ranging from links on Twitter to Facebook to their favorite blogs. Content creation and links that occur as an outcome of social media participation can provide positive signals to search engines and affect search visibility. Making a site more social media friendly will expand the opportunity for content to be discovered directly and indirectly.

    Search is the most efficient and effective way for consumers to discover content. Companies that want to take advantage now of where trends in information publishing, discovery and marketing would do well to ensure their content strategy factors in the value of search as well as social media.

    Core concepts to understand search engine friendly web sites includes:

    * Crawlable content
    * Site organization
    * Internal links
    * Keyword usage – content optimization
    * Code/HTML optimization
    * Inbound links from external web sites

    The notion of “search engine friendly” basically means making a web site easy for search engines to find, make a copy of, understand and rank in search results. Search engines are by no means perfect, not even Google. Making web sites more search engine friendly means making up for shortcomings in the search engines’ ability to crawl, index and sort web content.

    This is why SEO is an important asset to the performance of natural seasrch results. All major search engines invest in continued improvements in order to achieve a better search experience for users. Some of the things that SEOs have traditionally done for web site publishers are now handled automatically by search engines such as many of the features included in Google’s Webmaster tools.

    Improving a web site’s availability to search engines as well as keyword usage and links (internal/external) helps the search engine provide better search results to consumers. It’ also helps companies marketing their products and services to attract more qualified buyers. Not only can web site traffic increase, but the right kind of visitors will self segment themselves by the keywords they use to search.

    Many companies have the search issue handled or at least they’re on their way. A recent study by eMarketer shows B2B companies rate Search Marketing as one of their top marketing investments for 2009. A poll run on Online Marketing Blog with well over 500 responses also ranked SEO as a top digital marketing tactic for 2009.

    Standard search is evolving but it’s not enough to remain competitive to focus on standard Search Engine Optimization tactics. The social web is the web of the near future and real time search results through services like search.twitter.com or even the new sort by recency option within Google are giving consumers more control over the freshness of the information available to them.

    The increasing demand for fresh, live web content as well as the expectation of consumers to interact with what they find in the search results demands that web site owners and content publishers make their web sites both search and social media friendly.

    Here are a few ways web sites can make themselves more “Social Media Friendly”:

    * Fresh content – To play the search and social media game, a web site must be in the content publishing business. Search engines and participants of the social web respond favorably to the signals created from frequent updates. Participation in off site social channels can be brought into the corporate web site through RSS or widgets providing web site visitors access to additional forms of information and interaction with the company.

    * Social content – Not all of a company’s social web participation needs to happen offsite with third party tools. The addition of a blog, reviews, forum or even a social network to the company web site can provide intersted consumers opportunities to interact with other brand fans as well as the company.

    * Easy to share – Besides the ability to contribute to conversations happening on a corporate web site, there’s a tremendous opportunity and benefit to making it easy for site visitors to share that content with others. Many sites offer “share this” options that make it easy for readers to submit the page being viewed to popular social bookmarking and social news web sites such as Digg, Delicious and StumbleUpon. Sharing options for Facebook, Twitter and email are also popular.Making it easy for web site visitors to share interesting content (web pages, video, images) facilitates the word of mouth recommendations people make in real life, except when done online, they become searchable assets.

    The advantages of incorporating social features include improved online word of mouth, stimulating conversations with prospective customers and advocates and expanded market reach. The question is, are web marketing teams incorporating a social media strategy with their overall search marketing and vice versa?

    Are you making your web site search engine friendly for the social web?

    You can find 5 ways to make your web site search engine and social media friendly in this companion blog post at Mashable.
    Fuente: http://www.toprankblog.com/2009/06/is-your-web-site-seo-and-social-media-friendly/

    20 de abril de 2011

    Future Trends for Marketers in Search & Social Media

    The intersection of SEO and social media marketing continues to gain traction amongst online marketers everywhere you look in the industry. As an example, the enthusiastic interest in our recent compendium of blog posts, Essentials of Integrating SEO & Social Media. I think most experienced marketers “get” that SEO and Social Media functions are less effective as distinct channels within a marketing program and work better as a coordinated effort.

    Integration of Social and SEO makes sense for a variety of reasons when considering evolving consumer information discovery behaviors. Even so, I think a lot of companies are looking for direction and what’s next. This week Brandon Prebynski and I chatted on his Webtrends.TV show about the mix of search and social media and one area we discussed that I think is worth sharing here is about future direction.

    There are two areas of focus (out of many) I think are worth considering with future of search and social media for marketers. First, is the technology that powers the search and social media experience for consumers. The second is the logistics of implementing integrated search and social media campaigns within a company.

    On the technology side, you have search becoming increasingly influenced by social signals. For example, Google and Bing are getting feed data from Twitter and Facebook. If you’re logged in to Google, your search results can be annotated by things your friends have shared on Quora or Flickr. Erik Sherma recently covered the award to Facebook of a patent for curated search that combines any type of search engine results with the popularity of each result among members of a user’s social network which shows another direction social sites are taking to make search more social.

    True social search is something the engines have been trying at for a long time, but now the momentum Facebook has with 600 million users gives them a lot of data and an audience with which to experiment. From a technology standpoint I think we’ll see an increasing level of influence and integration of social based signals on traditional search activity. The race for true social search is between search engines like Google adding social signals and features vs. social giants like Facebook adding more significant search functionality to their platforms. Who will win is up to consumers.

    Logistically within companies we’ll see less silos between search marketing and social media functions. While it’s been up for debate a while, many companies’ social media is managed by Public Relations and SEO is managed by Marketing.

    There’s an growing convergence of responsibilities between PR and Marketing. The value of relationships and influence are increasingly appreciated by online marketers. Alternatively, PR and communications professionals are beginning to value search based discovery as they look for ways to communicate more value for their efforts.

    PR departments are already creating content, why not make it easy for their target audience (journalists, analysts, bloggers and direct consumers) to find via search? Google sites alone handle 88 billion queries per month – that’s an overwhelming quantity of behavior and too significant to ignore.

    As part of the effort to improve the connection between searchers and content, people in the social media content creation business would do well to consider things like a keyword glossary when creating their content marketing strategy and editorial plans.

    Search marketers have traditionally used social media as distribution channels for promoting content to drive a flood of traffic. Many of those SEOs are beginning to appreciate the equity in relationships (community) that they can build through social channels so they don’t have to work so hard creating new connections every time they have a new link bait campaign.

    Mastering the convergence of SEO and Social Media with Content Marketing starts with an appreciation of how consumers prefer to discover, consume and share information online.

    Google’s Panda update is yet another reminder to focus on content that engages. Marketers that make great content easy to find via social channels and links will be rewarded with even more relevant traffic through search engines like Google and Bing.

    What can companies do to become more effective search and social media marketers? The simple answer is to develop an approach to online marketing that focuses on customer centric content that’s keyword and social media optimized. Follow how content is consumed and shared – make it easy to do those things while monitoring and engaging to develop networks and relationships. Continue to keep business outcomes in mind and be thoughtful about how success will be measured short and long term.

    As many companies deal with figuring out how search and social media will work together, I am curious what your experiences have been?

    * How important is the integration of search and social in your company’s current marketing mix?
    * Are you incorporating SEO and social media efforts more or less since last year?
    * What positive outcomes have you seen as a result of incorporating SEO & Social Media Marketing?
    Fuente: http://www.toprankblog.com/2011/03/future-trends-search-social-media-marketing/

    19 de abril de 2011

    22 Social Media Marketing Management Tools

    With every online marketing channel and discipline, there must be tools to make the task of marketing more efficient and effective. Social Media Marketing is no different. Over the past 6-9 months, I’ve been researching and reviewing a variety of social media management tools that help with everything from source network connections to campaign & social content management to monitoring & measurement. While there numerous tools that manage single platforms (like Twitter) this list includes services that manage multiple social network accounts, content and measurement.

    At some point we’ll do more with individual reviews, but in the meantime, here is a list of 22 different social media marketing management tools, platforms and services to help manage and scale your online marketing efforts on the social web:

    Shoutlet – Manages social media marketing communications with one platform for building, engaging and measuring social media. Includes multiple account and platform support, social CRM and ecommerce for Facebook, email marketing and mobile features.

    direct message labs
    Direct Message Lab – Provides consulting, implementation and a platform (REACH) for centralized management of social media promotions & contests, advertising and measurement.

    objective marketer
    Objective Marketer - Offers social media marketing and analytics with integrated campaign management (Twitter, Blogs, Facebook, YouTube), multi-channel execution, engagement reports and user management.

    Wildfire Interactive - Platform for easy creation, implementation and management of branded interactive campaigns including: sweepstakes, contests and give-aways.

    strongmail social media
    StrongMail Social Studio – Comprehensive social media marketing platform with a referral marketing platform, social sharing tool and campaign management application. (Disclosure: StrongMail is a TopRank client)

    Sprout social media
    Sprout - Cloud-based visual authoring software used to build interactive Engage Ads and Engage Apps that deliver rich, interactive, and social content across the web and mobile devices.

    Spredfast - Enterprise social media management system that allows an organization to manage, monitor, and measure its voices across multiple social media channels. Also offers a white label option for agencies.

    socialTALK – allows brands to create (text, photos, videos), manage (customize workflow & approval process), publish (single source, scheduled publishing to multiple platforms) and measure (aggregated analytics dashboard) their content strategy and posting schedule.

    Crowd Factory – Suite of social media marketing tools include Social Campaign, that enables marketers to acquire new customers through simple social gestures and custom social marketing campaigns while easily tracking ROI.

    Awareness - Social marketing hub that centralizes social media content publishing, management, measurement and engagement. Also includes access to 7 white-labeled, best practice social networking applications.

    this moment
    @this moment – Built on the @this moment platform, DEC is a system for managing a brand’s presence across multiple online environments combining multimedia UGC, and a variety of real-time inputs which are distributed across social platforms including YouTube Brand Channels, Facebook Fan Pages, MySpace Brand Communities & the iPhone.

    MediaFunnel – Offers a Business Social Media platform for Facebook and Twitter supporting multiple users per profile and editorial review. Includes monitoring and integrates with Salesforce.com.

    Virtue – Works with clients and agencies through a Social Relationship Management (SEM) platform offering Facebook tabs & applications, a publishing feature for Facebook & Twitter and mobile solutions.

    Sprinklr – Social media marketing platform and consulting services for consumer & B2B marketers as well as agencies. Provides social media audience research, acquisition, content promotion and measurement tools.

    Janrain – Web based platform of tools including: Engage to make it easy for users to connect a site with their social networks, Federate to facilitate navigation across multiple web properties & partner sites with a single log-in (currently supports 16 networks), Capture to leverage user data for personalized experiences.

    sprout social
    Sprout Social – Affordable social media dashboard, monitoring, team workflow, influencer and contact management, performance metrics and daily or weekly email summaries. Supports Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Yelp and Foursquare.

    Sendible – Social media marketing platform that supports 30+ networks & services offering management of: accounts/profiles, messages & content, social contacts, content discovery, engagement, blog content & promotion, monitoring and analytics. Also offers a white label version for agencies.

    KickApps – Self service social media web site authoring and social content management system system supporting video, social networking, social graph & activity streams, apps & analytics. Enables web publishers and marketers to develop branded communities, social applications and interactive widgets on their websites and across the social web. Solutions for small and large business.

    Postling – Local business social media marketing platform to create content, stay organized and reach customers. Currently free for small business or personal use.

    pop.to Social Marketing – A social marketing suite, including feed-enabled social gestures and widgets, social dashboard, segmentation tools, influencer identification, conversion tracking and built-in friend casting.

    HootSuite - Social media dashboard for managing social content and engagement on multiple networks with team workflow and statistics.

    Seesmic – Web and desktop tools to manage social marketing activity on Twitter, Facebook, FourSquare, Google Buzz and Linkedin plus a plug-in marketplace for more social management options.

    This list of social media marketing platforms & services “ad hoc” was compiled by bookmarking various services as they were discovered or pitched to us (we don’t reply to pitches). Here’s another useful list of SMMS was compiled in March 2010 by Jeremiah Owyang.

    What social media marketing dashboards, software and management tools from the list above have you tested or use? Reviews, observations, insights and questions are greatly appreciated!

    Obviously, tools are only as good as the expertise of the people using them, so TopRank Marketing is always interested in helping companies develop their social media roadmap and recommend the right supporting software for implementation.
    Fuente: http://www.toprankblog.com/2010/09/22-social-media-marketing-management-tools/

    18 de abril de 2011

    Study shows promotion effect of online travel sites.

    A new study confirms the existence of the so-called 'billboard effect' for hotels that are listed on third-party websites operated by online travel agents (OTAs).

    The study used publicly available data from comScore on brands operated by InterContinental Hotels Group to assess the impact of listing at OTAs upon bookings on the "hotelbrand.com" site.

    Anderson, an assistant professor at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, replicated and expanded an earlier study, which found that a hotel's listing on Expedia increased total reservation volume—not including reservations processed through Expedia itself. This larger study looks at 1,720 transactions for InterContinental Hotels brands during the summer months of three years (2008, 2009, and 2010).

    "It's clear that there is increased reservation volume on the 'brand.com' site as a result of having the hotel appear on the online travel agent site," said Anderson, "and it appears that the commissions paid to online travel agents actually should be considered a marketing expense."

    Anderson also tracked the surfing behavior of would-be hotel guests. He found that almost 75 percent of the consumers who booked at the brand's site visited the OTA, with 83 percent performing a web search prior to the booking (and two-thirds doing both). "Some travelers spend enormous time researching hotels online," he said. "On average, hotel consumers made twelve visits to an OTA's website, requested 7.5 pages per visit, and spent almost five minutes on each page before booking."

    The study, "Search, OTAs, and Online Booking: An Expanded Analysis of the Billboard Effect," by Chris Anderson, is available at no charge from the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research (CHR) at:

    Fuente: http://www.4hoteliers.com/4hots_nshw.php?mwi=8516