• Our Top 5 Ways to Use Remarketing to Increase Your ROI

    It’s hardly news that our digital experience is getting more personalized every day. Open Netflix, and you see movies recommended specifically for you (my recommended list recently got it completely right with The Wedding Singer, and completely wrong with Columbo—but hey, I appreciate the effort). Sign up for a retailer’s email list and they notify you when items you’ve clicked on are on sale (I and my wallet know from experience how persuasive those emails can be—thanks, Modcloth). But now the personalization is bigger than just on specific sites. You’ve probably noticed that if you search for something on Google, you’ll probably see ads for that thing—tan high-heeled shoes or The Incredibles DVD or a mid-century sofa—popping up on the sites you visit thereafter. It’s not exactly Google reading your mind, although it kind of seems that way. It’s actually an ad strategy called remarketing (or retargeting, depending on who you ask). It’s been around for several years, but it’s only in the past year or so that it seems to be literally everywhere—I mean, when was the last time you visited a website without seeing ads that seemed hand-picked for you, from plane tickets to China, to fitness apps,…

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  • How to Use Quora to Help Your Business

    Websites that allow you to pose questions to the internet at large have to be one of the both best and worst things web developers have given us. You can post the silliest, most random question—“What should I have for dinner tonight?”—and you’re bound to get a slew of answers, plus start an argument about the advantages of pizza with mushrooms versus pizza with spinach.

  • Finishing Strong: Digital Marketing for the Fourth Quarter

    It’s official: summer is coming to an end. It doesn’t exactly feel like it from my house in Texas, but the calendar doesn’t lie. My Facebook feed has switched from being filled with skinny girls in bikinis frolicking on beaches to little ones posing on their porches for the first day of school. Stores are stocked up with school supplies instead of sunscreen. Yes, summer is ending.

    Summer can be rough on digital marketing efforts.

  • Marketing to Millennials: An INBOUND Presentation

    Our CEO, Shama Hyder, spoke today at INBOUND 2015 – Hubspot’s largest conference with over 15,000 people attending. She spoke on how to market to millennials – AKA the future of the workforce. Here are…

  • WTF Millennials: Tips for #ModernMarketing

    Generations are extremely broad—they homogenize vastly different people, values, interests, experiences based on having a birthday that falls within a 15 year range. Yup, not every Millennial is a mustachioed, plaid-wearing, PBR-drinking hipster—just like every Baby Boomer isn’t a crochety budget hunter who doesn’t know how to use a computer. Shocking, we know.

    People like to think of themselves as individuals, not as demographics.

  • 7 Conferences You Should Add to Your Calendar Before the End of 2015

    As marketers, we are always thinking about our day-to-day and how we can be more efficient. Do more, be more, generate more leads, increase ROI for our clients and ourselves. And to do that, we need to look at the big picture. A great way to look at our roles and think about how we’re contributing to the bigger picture is to attend conferences and events where we’re able to network with others in our industry. Not only does it give us a great look at the competition, but it allows us to learn from those who influence us, and to get a better feeling about the direction our industries are heading.

  • Breaking Silos: The Real Secret to Online Marketing Success

    Here at Marketing Zen, we operate in our virtual offices all over the United States, and all over the world. Not being in an office space is great. There’s no one standing over our shoulder dictating what we’re working on, when. This also means though, that we have to be especially good at managing our time and making sure that the work we do is quality and gets great results for our clients. So, how do we ensure we deliver quality work that receives those great results? It’d be easy to say that we all keep our heads down and focus on our own work. And sure, this is important because we have several departments that have a long list of tasks to accomplish. But that’s actually not what gets the best results. In fact, what we find works best is when three teams specifically, find the time to collaborate: content, social media, and search. How Do We Put Our Heads Together? Naturally, the content teams, social media teams, and search teams, all have different agendas and thoughts on priority. Because of this, it’s easy to butt heads and lose track of what is going on with a project. Is…

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  • The 5 Best Social Media Tools to Free Up 2 Hours a Day

    Here at Marketing Zen, we are fortunate enough to be a virtual team. This means more or less that we all work from home, workspaces, cafes, or anywhere with Wi-Fi—and we love it. However, when you work from a remote location and don’t commute to an office, time tends to get away from you and you end up working long days (not on purpose). Our eyes are always peeled for new tools and apps to help us work more efficiently and of course, free up some time. Recently I did an interview with Media Shower where I shared some of my best advice on creating strategies that result in high engagement and ROI. These tools below won’t only help increase your engagement, but improve the quality of engagement, and your overall day-to-day efficiency. Buffer Buffer is a content scheduling and publishing app. Here at Marketing Zen, we favor Buffer when it comes to managing our personal LinkedIn presence. The tool is helping us grow our footprint on the B2B channel and draw more attention to our content, whether it’s Marketing Zen blog posts, trending articles, or current events in the marketing world. While most applications which allow you to schedule…

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  • Should I Hire a Social Media Marketing Agency or Hire In-House? 4 Factors to Consider

    Being a marketing agency that does great work (if we do say so ourselves) for both B2B and B2C companies, you would assume that we would be all for promoting the outsourcing of your marketing efforts to an agency. And by all means, there is a time when that is the route you should take. But is there a time when it may benefit you more to bite the bullet and bring someone to the team to work in-house? The answer is yes. We wanted to revisit when you should outsource your marketing efforts, and when you should keep them in-house. Here are some things you need to consider: Time  What a lot of people don’t realize when they think of social media, is the time that it takes up. People think “Oh I’ll post on Twitter now and then, share some articles on LinkedIn, and we’ll be all set!” Right? No, of course not. Wrong, very wrong. Knowing about your industry, your competitors, and what’s new with both takes a good amount of time and research. This is where hiring an agency can come in handy—because agencies who specialize in social media, have all of their time to dedicate…

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  • Six Elements of Forming Community

    Today, we are excited to bring you a guest post written by John Jantsch.  This post was drawn from the teachings contained in his latest book, Duct Tape Selling – Think Like a Marketer Sell Like a Superstar. Connecting the dots in an organization’s community requires a deep understanding of how community actually forms in most businesses. It’s not about Facebook pages and catchy slogans. It’s much more subtle and requires that you start thinking about organizational elements that you’ve probably never considered before.  I believe a business forms community through the following six elements. Clarity To understand a company’s purpose and to see how they communicate that to the community—go straight to the community. Locate some customers and employees of the prospect and put them into a simple CRM to track their public social media activity. It’s amazing what you can learn about a company by watching how they interact in places like Facebook and Twitter. Often you’ll find proof of what they stand for, what values they promote, and how they interact. How they act online can tell you a great deal about who they are as an organization. You might find that their public words and actions…

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  • Segmenting Your Audience Online: Are You Doing It Right?

    Targeting content to consumers isn’t something new; marketers have been doing it for years. First you decide who your customers are, segment them based on different characteristics and then tailor the language you use to interact with them to optimize engagement. You might have a customer type that is data driven and will only be persuaded by the facts and figures. On the other hand you might have someone that is an idealist, someone that is more interested in what could be. The big question is: Are you doing it online? Have you taken a step back, looked at the consumers you are creating content for and segmented them based on their online personas? Online consumers have quite a few personas, each sharing content in different ways, for different purposes. This is based on many different factors and will vary based on the sharing platform. One person might share for career gain, only sharing content that will show them as up to date with the latest information in the industry. Probably sharing more on LinkedIn than other networks, wanting what they share to contain facts, figures and carry credibility. If you are tailoring content for these types of people make…

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  • The Top 4 Ways to Have An Effective Twitter Call to Action

    Often, it is easier and faster to gain followers on Twitter than it is on any other social media site. In particular, Twitter followers seem to grow much faster than Facebook likes. In fact, some numbers indicate that Twitter followers grow at a 55% faster rate than Facebook likes. While Facebook will remain king of social media for a while, Twitter is rapidly becoming the site to use for companies that want to establish their brands. Companies that want to be known should establish themselves firmly on both sites, though Twitter will likely spread their brand faster, which will help them to accelerate their online networking. So Why Use Twitter? Besides the fact that Twitter followers come rather rapidly, the marketing strategy of any company or small business should require some calls to action. Tweeting is pointless unless you are getting the results that you need from twitter, such as the results of the actions of your followers. Calls to action are extremely important but it is very difficult to execute a call to action that doesn’t seem too pushy or too corporate, which is one of the many mistakes companies can make on Twitter. Creating a call to action…

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