Posts tagged “business trends

Kansas City’s Data Center & Internet Hub Increases Website Traffic With Social Media and Cuts 75% of Google Adwords Budget

Posted By: Jamie Sutera, VP of R&D

1102 GRAND, Kansas City’s data center and Internet hub, saw a 200-300 percent increase in its website and blog traffic, and cut 75 percent of its Google Adwords budget. The marketing ROI is part of an ongoing social media campaign with Jennings Social Media Marketing (www.jenningssocialmedia.com).

Darren Bonawitz, principal of 1102 GRAND, said that Jennings Social Media Marketing helped 1102 GRAND have a better perspective of online marketing strategies. “We were in need of marketing experts and that is exactly what we found in Jennings Social Media Marketing. We have worked with Jennings Social Media Marketing for approximately two years. In that time 1102 GRAND has had an increase in website traffic, saved 75 percent of the budget on the Google Adwords campaign, been requested for more interviews than we can handle and been able to realize significant quantifiable results through additional revenue,” said Bonawitz.

Bonawitz added that the focus on social media is extremely beneficial. “Jennings Social Media Marketing implemented many facets of social media marketing including Facebook, Twitter, e-newsletters, blog, case studies, organic search engine optimized press releases and Web videos. Social media is such a vital tool because it is constantly working. We have had so many great results, and it is hard to argue with results,” said Bonawitz.

1102 GRAND is a Midwestern carrier hotel and network neutral collocation facility specifically enhanced with the infrastructure to host and provide services to an array of global network operators including carriers, service providers and enterprise customers who demand highly secure and connected, customized solutions for their core networking equipment. 1102 GRAND offers a wide array of collocation options including cabinets, cage space, suites and space for private data centers, all of which are connected to a carrier neutral Meet Me Room, housing nearly 30 carriers and service providers including AT&T, Level 3, TeliaSonera, tw telecom, Zayo Enterprise Networks, and Hurricane Electric (http://1102grand.com/).


4 Social Media Marketing Predictions for 2011

Posted By: Jared Cook

2010, often referred to as “the year of social media,” has come and gone. As we move forward into 2011, we will continue to see social media evolve and grow.

Below is an article from Mashable.com, written by Tim Ferriss, providing his insight into-

4 Social Media Marketing Predictions for 2011

Ah, social media marketing. Fewer things are so lavishly spent on, yet so poorly measured. Here are a few predictions for 2011 related to where the smart money and dumb money will go. Special thanks to a number of high-volume retail experts for their insights, including Ryan Holiday, director of marketing at American Apparel. Read on for our predictions and let us know in the comments what you think social media marketing will look like in the year to come.

1. YouTube Beats Yahoo — Video Will Convert

YouTubeYouTube is the second largest search engine in the English-speaking world. That’s right: YouTube is bigger than Yahoo. Zappos, as one example, added simple videos of people holding shoes and moving them around to its sales pages and increased conversion rate from 6% to 30%. When I look at the traffic sources for my book trailer on YouTube, the biggest referrer isn’t my own blog. It’s The Huffington Post. I customized the video and text content to a niche (but sizeable) outlet that didn’t exist two years ago: Huffington Post Books. With proper targeting and syndication, this 50 second video almost immediately propelled my book from an Amazon rank of approximately number 150 to 30, now stabilizing at number four in all books. We usedRankForest to track this sudden change.

2. The Full Resurrection of E-mail

Groupon has an e-mail list of at least 15 million strong in the U.S. (the company says it’s 30+ million if you include international), which goes to show that a true permission asset can be worth nearly $6 billion on the bidding table. E-mail addresses are a safer long-term investment than social media features. Think about all the money companies spent advertising their MySpaceMySpace pages in 2007. Even on FacebookFacebook, your direct messages to fans are relegated to a second tier inbox no one reads. This is something you don’t have to worry about happening in e-mail marketing. Among 20- to 35-year olds, at least, their physical addresses change more frequently than their e-mail addresses. The smarter marketers will budget “social media” acquisitions based on lifetime value (or a set duration, like 6 months’ retail purchases) of e-mail addresses. One major retailer did the math and learned that an e-mail subscriber is worth roughly $20 a year in annual online revenue. Knowing this number allowed the retailer to:

  • Calculate the value of the real estate it gives the e-mail signup box at the register in stores. It turns out to be one of the most lucrative converters in an already competitive area.
  • Easily say “Yes” or “No” to requests to participate in contests/sweepstakes by judging return on new e-mails acquired.
  • Calculate what the company can spend to build its list.

There are companies like Opt-Intelligence that can be paid a CPA (cost per action) for what are called “co-regs.” Co-reg example: If you’re signing up for an account at NYTimes.com, and it says “Get 4 issues of Golf Magazine FREE!” someone paid for that because they knew it will make money based on lifetime value. After the above-mentioned retailer quantified what an e-mail subscriber was worth, the company was able to double its subscriber base in less than eight months. The majority of that growth came not through spending money upfront, but from the redirection of already existing resources in ways that weren’t possible before calculating that number. Let’s say that added 500,000 e-mail addresses, each worth $20 in 2011; that means an additional $10 million in revenue with no significant capital outlay. Aaron Ray uses the same tactics for the “free agent bands” (major acts who’ve left a label) at The Collective. He figures out how many tickets you sell through your fan club, how many downloads come from your e-mail list, and how much traffic you can drive through Facebook and TwitterTwitter. It’s critical for two reasons: 1) For accurate revenue/sales/attendance predictions, and 2) As ROI metrics to justify investments for growth. This also allows loss-leader campaigns. Even if the math on a Groupon deal is razor thin, a smart retailer (online or offline) can acquire e-mails through a special form they set up and add an extra $20+ per transaction, per our hypothetical example. Many companies can afford to give product away for “free” if they have the right metrics. Most companies don’t, which leads us to number three.

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New Social Media Business Trends for 2011

Posted By: Jamie Sutera, VP of R&D, Jennings Social Media Marketing

Social Media is an important aspect to many businesses. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Flickr, blogs etc., are among the most popular ways to communicate and network. Business owners everywhere are utilizing social media in order to grow and manage their companies. Below is an article from http://venturebeat.com, written by Gary Halliwell, that reviews social media business trends for 2011.

According to the article, social media is always changing so it is important to stay on top of social media trends. Haliwell compiled a list of social media trends for 2011 to “help entrepreneurs make the most of this exciting marketing opportunity.”

Social marketing will move beyond Facebook and LinkedIn – A recent Harvard research study showed that information and influence travel up to three degrees across a social network. The information you communicate to friends, family and colleagues is often passed on beyond your network – possibly to thousands of people, most of whom you will not even know. Similarly, the information you receive each day may have traveled two or three degrees before it reaches you.

This is where the meat is for social marketers. In our connected world of Tweets, blogs, emails and posts, this information transmission is captured in electronic form, and what we know as “word-of-mouth” in face to face interaction has become “word-of-digital”, and it’s incredibly track-able and useful.

2011 and the years ahead will be a time when marketers start to get away from thinking of social marketing in terms of the limited information posted on Facebook or LinkedIn, and start to figure out how to influence and encourage the transmission of information across the vastly larger real social networks their customers inhabit.

Socially adept companies will align the needs of employees and customers – Social is about “we” – a dimension that few companies are used to operating in. “We” includes the inter-connectedness of customers on the internet, airing complaints and raving about things they like, creating resonance for brands both positive and negative. Just as importantly, and perhaps less intuitively, is that “we” also embraces employees.

I’ll again refer to Zappos, as it achieves customer excellence by ensuring employees and customers are aligned by delivering happiness to both employees and customers. Management knows that reacting to customers in real-time requires employees who are motivated, empowered and creative across the whole organization.

In 2011, we’ll see more companies embrace Zappos’ approach to social as integral, and large corporations relying on their inertia will feel the hot breath of excitement from fully motivated competition.

Millennials will take another step forward into the breach - The shift to greater social connectedness will continue to move forward in 2011.  In 2010, at a recent conference about social media in Boston, not one of the 500 attendees was below the age of 30. As a result, a lot of the discussion about social media was that of fear, uncertainty and doubt.

As younger people begin to turn up at these sorts of conferences, expect the conversation to change into discussions and enthusiasm for the possibilities of social media, as opposed to the threats.  Help is on its way, but it may be too late for larger more static companies where management think social is a cocktail in a bar.

Social will penetrate deeper into company structuresThe Fall 2010  NetProspex Social Business Report analyzed over 2 million contact records of folks within the largest companies in the nation. The trends offered an interesting view into 2011.

Not surprisingly, marketing decision makers had the heaviest use of social media. Interestingly, our study also showed human resources professionals ranking 2nd for social network usage. CEOs, meanwhile, were number 11 on the list, outpaced by office managers and customer service reps. This is a trend that will hopefully reverse, as more CEOs see the power of social media to network and to amplify their thought leadership.

Go live or go home – In his recent book,  Real-time Marketing and PR, David Meerman Scott gives many examples of companies that suffer from not reacting in real time to customer issues.  Going “real time means preparing an organization to react to what’s happening in their world, cohesively and adeptly. It requires planning for the future with room for ambiguity and change, and the flexibility to react from the top to the bottom of a company.

Going real time is something most companies, especially large ones, are not geared to do.  Generally, management selection is based on planning, organizational and political skills. Now that customers have the power they do with social communication, in a conversation that is visible to all, Scott’s premise is that creativity and improvisation is required in the real-time culture that customer relations now demand.

The good news is that this pressure will create excellence seen in live performance, but 2011 is still the beginning of painful transition for the majority of business.

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