How to perform an SEO audit. Part 1: Content SEO & UX

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How Employee Engagement Helps Drive the Success of Your Marketing Efforts

As our world becomes increasingly driven by digital technologies and the workforce experiences generational shifts, employee engagement is rising as a top focus area for many companies. After all, according to Gallup’s 2017 State of the American Workplace study, just 16% of the American workforce is “actively” engaged.

Of course, when employees aren’t engaged, they’re a flight risk. In fact, Gallup’s research also revealed that 51% of employees are actively looking for a new job or watching for openings. Furthermore, those employees who fall into the “actively disengaged” category, are almost twice as likely as engaged employees to seek new jobs. And when employees leave, that can have a big impact on your bottom line when it comes to recruiting and back-filling costs.

So, after reading all of that, you’re probably wondering: What does employee engagement have to do with marketing?

Well, marketer friends, the truth is that employee engagement has everything to do with marketing.

At the most basic level, without an army of engaged employees, your marketing efforts—whether it be recruiting top talent or fostering employee advocacy on social media—can’t reach their full potential. But on a deeper level, there are couple other important marketing benefits you could be missing out on:


Without an army of engaged employees, your #marketing efforts can’t reach their full potential. – @CaitlinMBurgess #EmployeeEngagement
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#1 – Engaged employees can be gold mines for marketing insights.

Regardless of department, every employee boasts first-hand insights into “who” your company is, what it cares about, what your customers are saying, the quality of your products or services, and what they see as the biggest value adds or opportunities.

As a result, your employees are absolute gold mines for getting insights that can help you refine and drive your marketing efforts. But in order to mine for those honest insights, employee engagement has to come front and center.

Why? Because employee engagement helps build rapport, strengthen communication and mobilize people to take a more active role. So, if employees aren’t engaged, they’ll be less likely to go the extra mile by sharing their insights with you.


Employees are absolute gold mines for getting insights that can help you refine & drive your #marketing efforts. @CaitlinMBurgess
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#2 – Engaged employees can help stretch your marketing dollars.

Marketers are often thought of the spenders within an organization, but engaged employees can help turn that notion on its head a bit. As mentioned in the section above, the insider insights that you can uncover are not only authentic and helpful, but they don’t cost you a thing—just the time and care in gathering them.

Of course, this means you can’t simply ask employees to weigh in from time to time. They need to feel like they’re valued from top to bottom within the organization, which means regular nurturing and engagement that trickles throughout the organization.


Don’t just ask employees to weigh in from time to time. Nurture them regularly. #EmployeeEngagement
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#3 – Employees can be your most powerful brand advocates.

Your employees are not only the people behind your brand, but also active consumers taking place in the marketplace, writing reviews, sharing recommendations verbally and via social media with friends and family, and researching their purchasing decisions. And they’re more than willing to share both positive and negative feedback about you online.

In fact, a couple years ago, a Weber Shandwick study found that 39% of employees had shared praise or positive comments about their employer online—and 16% had shared criticism or negative comments.

From my perspective, engaged employees are more likely to fall in the latter category. Why? Because when employees feel understood, valued and connected to something bigger than themselves, they feel pride—and pride is a reason to give praise. Furthermore, in today’s competitive talent landscape, current employees can be your best recruiters.

As a result, with a focus on employee engagement, you can unlock employee advocacy—and that’s the kind of marketing that money can’t buy.


With a focus on #EmployeeEngagement, you can unlock #EmployeeAdvocacy. @CaitlinMBurgess #marketing
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Help Kick-Start Your Company’s Employee Engagement Efforts

Employee engagement doesn’t happen overnight—nor does it happen with only the marketing department driving the initiative. Employee engagement has to be baked into your overall company culture to be successful.

So, where do you start? At the top.

Your company’s top leaders are the people who will give your employee engagement initiatives wings, helping the message and the commitment trickle down throughout the rest of the ranks.

I also suggest that you take a peek at a recent Marketing Land column by Karen Steele of Marketo. In the post, she outlines the four steps her organization took to bake employee engagement into company culture, as well as the results they’ve seen.


#EmployeeEngagement has to be baked into your overall company culture to be successful. #marketing
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On the hunt for a new gig with an employer that cares about nurturing and engagement? TopRank Marketing is hiring! Check out our Careers page for open positions.


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How 5 B2B Brands Are Using Snapchat and Instagram Stories

B2B brands are usually slow to jump on the latest social media craze train, and with good reason. Their audience might not even be on those social media networks. For example, Snapchat was originally full of teenagers and controversy — not a great place to grow brand awareness or share thought leadership. But my, oh my, how far we’ve come.

Today, networks like Snapchat, Instagram, Messenger, and other marketing channels are becoming new breeding grounds for B2B brands. But with frequent product updates introducing new features and advertising tools, brands are often left wondering what the best approach is.

One such feature is Stories: timed pictures or video clips that users can deck-out with text, filters, or stickers to spice-up their content. And it seems like every major app is jumping on this trend with Messenger, Facebook, and most recently YouTube creating their own version of a Stories feature. However, the jury is still out on the best ways to use them.

Well, we’re here to help you figure that out. Here are five B2B brands using Snapchat and Instagram Stories and how they’re using them to their advantage.

1. Cisco

One of the best ways to connect with an audience is through shared values. Cisco is well aware of this and utilizes their Snapchat Stories to share how their company and employees are making the world a better place. And because authentic content is seen as more genuine, Cisco actually allows their employees to run the account themselves. This way, their audience can see a true glimpse into the lives of Cisco employees and how they help others.


Image credit: Cisco

2. IBM

One of the key benefits of promoted Instagram or Snapchat Stories is that they allow you to geotarget your audience and create unique geofilters. With these features, brands can serve targeted Stories and custom filters to their audience based on their location. IBM has used this to their advantage in the past by creating special filters for their industry events. IBM can then promote the filters to event attendees and followers can see updates live from the event floor — creating an easy way for IBM to send relevant content to the right audience.


Image credit: IBM

3. Google

Brand storytelling at its finest. That’s how I would describe Google’s use of Instagram Stories. With Stories, Google shares brief vignettes with narrative captions to share inspiring stories of people using their products. Watch just a few and you’ll see how they sink their teeth into you and build up anticipation, encouraging you to complete their call to action and watch the full video. It’s a really effective and meaningful way for Google to share exactly how their solutions help solve both individual and global problems.


Image credit: Google

4. GE

GE is known for being an innovative company. But can you name exactly what they do? You might be able to name a few things, but the reality is that GE does too many things to name. Because of this, GE has been using Instagram Stories to share the unique things they do all over the world. Most notably, they took us deep into a volcano to sample active lava. Each story helps paint a picture for their audience, changing their public perception from an industrial giant to a creative innovator.


Image credit: Adweek

5. Mailchimp

Mailchimp, everyone’s go-to email service provider, uses Snapchat Stories to share scenes from fun events, creative images, and funny videos. With smart brand apparel, a hip monkey named Freddie, and really cool artwork, Mailchimp has an endless supply of creative and eye-catching content to share. And while it may seem like there’s not a unifying theme behind their Stories, it actually does a great job of showing off their brand’s eclectic personality. Through witty commentary and funky images, Mailchimp has personified their brand, building strong relationships with their followers.

 


Image credit: Recruiting Social

Up Your B2B Social Game

Don’t be hesitant to take the next step for your brand’s social media marketing. For more ideas on how your B2B brand can up your social media game, check out these social media tips and examples or our guide on Snapchat for B2B brands.

Not ready to expand your social media marketing on your own? Find out how we can help by taking a look at our social media marketing services.


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© Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®, 2017. | How 5 B2B Brands Are Using Snapchat and Instagram Stories | http://ift.tt/faSbAI

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Digital Marketing News: F500 Are Visual, LinkedIn on Top, Business of Color

The Business of Color
From golden arches to red bulls, color is fundamental to our recognition of familiar brands and color affects the way people react when they first encounter a company. Vistaprint worked with Dr. Sally Augustin of Design With Color to develop recommendations for the design of places, objects, and services that support desired cognitive, emotional, and physical experiences. Vistaprint

Study: Social Media and Blog Usage by Fortune 500 Companies in 2017. Fortune 500 companies are increasingly using visual social networks such as Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat, according to recent research conducted by Nora Ganim Barnes and Shannen Pavao at The Center for Marketing Research, University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth. MarketingProfs

Snapchat seeks salvation in long-form and “hands-on” AR ads. Snapchat has introduced two new forms of ads: Promoted Stories which string together multiple Snaps into a longer-form slideshows openable from a tile on the Stories page that’s shown to everyone in a given country, and Augmented Reality Trial ads that let people play with an AR version of a product overlaid on the world around them. TechCrunch

On-Page Content Continues to be Considered the Most Effective SEO Tactic. On-page content is considered to be effective by more marketers than any of the other SEO tactics outlined, whereas off-page content development and optimization is perceived to be effective by the fewest respondents (57% and 10%, respectively). Ascend2 Study via MarketingCharts

Announcing New Facebook Tools for the Creator Community. The new Facebook Creator app is a one stop shop for creators of all kinds, to help take their passions to the next level. With the app, creators can easily create original video, go live with exclusive features, and connect with their community on Facebook. Facebook Newsroom

LinkedIn continues to be the most popular social platform for Fortune 500 companies. 98% of Fortune 500 companies have set up shop on LinkedIn to tell their story, network, stimulate word of mouth and recruit. Four hundred and eighty-eight companies on the F500 list are using LinkedIn in 2017. UMass / Dartmouth Center for Marketing Research (LinkedIn is a TopRank Marketing client)

93% read reviews

Report: By 2019 Two-Thirds Of Global Display Ads Will Be Traded Programmatically. Programmatic ad sales are growing at an annual average rate of 21% per year, according to Publicis Groupe Zenith’s latest report, Programmatic Marketing Forecasts. This year’s estimate is $57.5 billion. MediaPost

Study: B2B Marketers Find Content Downloads Drive Conversions. Two-thirds of those polled said content downloads generated leads with the best conversion rates, more than webinar registration (45%), demo requests (37%), surveys and polls (26%) and even free trials. eMarketer

Fake-Ad Operation Used to Steal From Publishers Is Uncovered. Adform says ‘Hyphbot’ scheme created fake websites, nonhuman traffic to scam advertisers of more than $500,000 a day. Wall Street Journal

The Impact of 17 Factors on Google Search Rank. Direct website traffic is the factor that most influences how well pages rank on Google’s search engine result pages (SERPs), according to recent research from SEMRush. What were the other top factors? Find out on MarketingProfs

Facebook Will Show Americans What Russian Propaganda Posts They Read. Now you can find out which Russian propaganda pages or accounts you’ve followed and liked on Facebook, due to a request from Congress to address manipulation and meddling during the 2016 presidential election. AdAge

TopRank Marketing in the News

  • Amy Higgins – Content Marketing Conversations: Marketer Amy Higgins Demystifies Buzzwords – Flipboard
  • Debbie Friez – Facebook Hacks by Top 13 Industry Experts to Increase Fans Engagement and Activity – M&M blog
  • Steve Slater – 150 Years of the Best Holiday Campaigns: M&M’s Stumble Upon Santa – Big Commerce
  • Amy Higgins & Lee Odden – A Few ‘Kick-Start Your Career’ Tips From Top 6 Most Influential Women (Plus One Man) in Content Marketing – Prowly Magazine
  • @LeeOdden – 12 Best Twitter Accounts to Learn About Marketing – Xpand Blog
  • @LeeOdden – Top 100 Social Media People to Follow on Twitter – Revive Social

Jake Murphy
Welcome to our newest team member Jake Murphy as Graphic Designer!

Elizabeth Williams
Congratulations to Account Manager, Elizabeth Williams, on her first year anniversary with TopRank Marketing!

What was the top digital marketing news story for you this week?

Be sure to stay tuned until next week when we’ll be sharing all new marketing news stories. Also check out the full video summary with Tiffani and Josh on YouTube.


Email Newsletter Gain a competitive advantage by subscribing to the
TopRank® Online Marketing Newsletter.

© Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®, 2017. | Digital Marketing News: F500 Are Visual, LinkedIn on Top, Business of Color | http://ift.tt/faSbAI

The post Digital Marketing News: F500 Are Visual, LinkedIn on Top, Business of Color appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.


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