Friday Catch-Up: Same Old Players, All New War

Category: Friday Catch-up

Here in this gloomy month of January, we’ve already given up on 50% of our resolutions, said goodbye to the holiday season and are settling into the New Year.

As winter chills keep shaking our bones, we see that the change of season isn’t only affecting the migratory patterns of birds this year. Vine moves from the land of mobile to the web while Google, Apple and Microsoft move their warfare into a new arena. Grab a hot cup of cocoa and enjoy the madness.

NEWS

The Vines Are Spreading To the Web

While Vine had successfully made itself a home in mobile, with 6 second videos, it now forays into the cyber jungle that is the World Wide Web. Vine will now be creating a web presence with full profiles for its users where they will be able to view past videos and share them with peers. The website will so far be used in order to share previous vines rather than create new content. Read more at Venture Beat.

The Beauty Army is ready for Battle

What used to be simply a subscription sample service is a now a fully fledged ecommerce sites. Focusing on health and beauty products, the Beauty Army will now be offering more than 200 brands from its online catalogue. The previous subscription box service facilitated data collection for the Beauty Army which it will be using to optimize their site and provide a wider section of products to its customers. This will be a relief for its customers who don’t have to be limited to six samples. Read more at Tech Crunch.

The Race Has Begun: Google, Apple and Microsoft Start Their Engines

Just as we thought the fires of Mount Doom were cooling down, we find out that the three kingdoms of the internet have found other territory to claim. While smartphone compatibility was never a question when you went to purchase a car, it seems that Google, Apple and Microsoft think otherwise. Google recently teamed up with Audi, GM, Hyundai, Honda and Nvidia in order to create a platform compatible with Google’s android OS. Similarly Apple and Microsoft have also been partnering up with manufacturers such as BMW, Acura, Mercedes-Benz, GM, Ford, Volvo and Toyota. As the three big wigs have their fingers on the trigger, the car manufacturing industry is poised to see the same rapid growth that was seen by smartphones. Read more at The Guardian.

TIPS & TRICKS

Customizing Blog Subscriber Emails

Pamela Vaughan of Hubspot reveals some interesting secrets about how to customize automate blog subscriber emails. These are usually not given a thought after first creating the blog. Adding customization capabilities to the blog however is as yet an untapped well. She suggests that the name of the sender should be recognizable and the subject line be catchy and alluring. The preview text should be of the most exciting part of the content. Make sure that the email is responsive to adapt to various screen sizes.

Planning for Content Marketing in 2014

Pam Moore of Social Media Today assures us that it is no longer a question of whether content marketing works or not. In 2014 content marketing will no longer be an option but a necessity. While content marketing is effective, it cannot be made up as you go. Creating an editorial calendar to plan out posts should be helpful. She suggests creating blog categories, monthly and weekly themes of conversations, target audiences, primary keywords, images and other supporting media. Read more at Social Media Today

Intent Marketing: the new kid on the block

Matt Akins of Kiss metrics points out some of the most important features of intent marketing. The first step that a business must take is to identify its intent. This starts by determining why you are doing what you have decided to do. Understand what you wish to achieve from the actions. The next question would be to ask how the intent will be carried out and what will need to be done in order to reach the goal. Read more at Kiss Metrics.

Using Written Content to Generate Leads

With 2013 marked as the year of visual content, it seems that written content has been overlooked when it comes to generating leads. Written content gets a bad rap simply because the content I written the right way. When writing content, make sure to share something that captures the attention of the reader ad supports your branding. Making list posts is one popular method of generating leads along with writing guest posts and using social media for sharing. The best kind of written content sparks conversations. Read more at Social Media Examiner.

Saving Visual Content in Infographics

In the visual era of information exchange, infographics have become the go-to tool for providing information that exceeds what we’re used to (aka 140 characters). As reading habits have changed and attention spans have lowered it seems that infographics have become a necessity. The problem however is that most creators of infographic focus on providing information that they end up crating a cesspool of colored bars and graphs. Dennis McCafferty of Content Marketing Institute suggests focusing on a narrative thread rather than cramming facts and figures in.

Free Tools and Plug-Ins for Web Usability

Kimberly Krause Berg of Internet Marketing Ninjas brings us a list of some exciting plug-ins and tools for website usability. These tools are not only free but great for editing wile on the browser. Some of her suggestions included Keynote MITE, Color Schemer, Pixlr, Mockflow and Balsamiq. When it comes to cloud solutions however you will need to spend some cash for the Adobe Creative Suite or Microsoft 365. View more at Internet Marketing Ninjas.

It’s Time to Talk about Google +

Google + seem to be catching up when it comes to the social media race and it’s time for marketers to start making a substantial mark. One of the main features of Google + is “Circles”. Circles can help you manage your content effectively and make sure that it reaches the right people. ‘Circles’ allows you to share specific content in social circles. If a post is meant for your work friends you can simply select their circle. When creating circles make sure to sort them by priority, curate them and share. Read more at Social Media Today.

Stealing from the competition

Stealing sounds like quite a harsh word implying the gain of one and the loss of another. Social media however has changed the way we perceive things. This is the same idea when stealing followers from competitors. The first crime scene would be social media. To steal your competitor followers start by networking reaching out to websites that your niche market frequents. Identify the key players in your industry and monitor their activities. Find out what questions the community is asking and if left unanswered feel free to step in and offer your guidance. Read more sneaky tips at Kiss Metrics.

How the future of digital marketing looks in 2014

According to Ian Lurie of Portent, 2014 is the year the digital goes up to 30%-60% from its current 25% level. This emergence of digital can be attributed to the rise of smartphone usage, social media and the culmination of the internet of things. Digital marketing needs to be worked on in 2014 and it is advisable to have an in-house technologist. Read more at Portent.

Emerging Entrepreneurs to follow on Twitter

We just love it when someone makes a list of freebies and just shares it for free. Feels like getting another Christmas present. Practical Ecommerce just made a list of all the best small business experts to follow on twitter. Twitter is becoming a powerful tool for entrepreneurs. What better place to start networking than on Twitter. The list included Barry Moltz who is a speaker and consultant, Dharmesh Shah who is the co founder of Hubspot, Ivana Taylor of DIY Marketers and the official Copy Blogger twitter site. Read more at Practical Ecommerce.

INFOGRAPHICS

A Day in Social Media

40% of the world’s population uses social media on a daily basis. Saxum released its obligatory 2014 infographic showing social media usage around the world. The results showed that 23% of Facebook users check Facebook more than 5 times a day whereas a twitter sees 400 million tweets in a day. LinkedIn also seems to be gaining speed with 10 million endorsements in a day. View the infographic at MarketingProfs.

A Birds Eye View of the Internet Landscape

In what is perhaps the largest infographic on the internet Scott Brinker of Ion Interactive has allowed us a glimpse into the heart of the internet landscape. He entered 947 companies and divided them among 43 categories to help define what shapes the internet. Although this graphic seems a bit cumbersome Brinker assures us that there is still much more to come and much more that wasn’t even initially included. View the eye opening infographic at Venture Beat.

Avoiding Penalties in case of Short term Duplicate Content

In Matt Cutts most recent video he was asked what to do in case a news site was updating short-term duplicate content. The question referred to a developing story that is added to over time. In order to avoid penalties in this case Matt Cutts suggested the use of the URL Canonical Tag to point to one home URL until the data was developing. Once the story has undergone its life however, there would be a need to dedicate one space to it with original content. View the video on YouTube.