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Inbound Industry Report: October 16, 2012

Top marketing news, articles and tips from the second week of October 2012.

Inbound Marketing Industry ReportSocial Media

We’ve witnessed a number of social media gaffes in recent recall, sometimes making it difficult to remember there actually are companies out there doing social media right. And, one of the key factors to do so is having mature talent who will add value to your brand when representing it. But, what happens when one of these valuable employees splits from the company?

Bob Sullivan (@RedTapeChron) touches on who gets the friends and followers built across social networks in this kind of situation. Since many of these accounts intermingle personal and professional connections, it can be difficult to distinguish who gets what. First and foremost, as a company, be sure to put a social media policy in place that addresses this topic, among others. And, as an employee, keep the following tips in mind to maintain control of your network:

  • Use a personal email and contact information when setting up accounts, not a corporate one.
  • Unless your account is used specifically for business functions, don’t link the company name to your account, such as @Sally_XYZcompany.
  • Include a personal photo rather than the company logo as your profile picture.

Content Marketing

The word “content” is thrown around so much these days that it can sometimes be difficult for business owners and marketers to define what role content must play in their marketing strategy. John Jantsch (@ducttape) says that content must be impactful, and we need to think of it “as a tool that moves prospects from awareness to conversion.” But, how?

Jantsch shares five necessary types of content that will help prospects and customers at different stages of the purchase path:

  1. Trust Building—Bridge the gap from general awareness to building your trust as a helpful, knowledgeable resource (e.g. how-tos, reviews, articles).
  2. Educational—Feed prospects that are hungry for more (e.g. eBooks, newsletters, webinars).
  3. Community Contributed—Get your customers involved to nurture loyalty and community (e.g. testimonials, guest blog posts, reviews).
  4. Filtered—Aggregate content produced by others (e.g. curated posts like these, thoughtful shares on social networks, etc).
  5. Conversion—Give prospects the final piece of information they need to make a purchase decision  (e.g. in-person events, case studies, ROI calculators).

Industry Headlines

  • Venture firm First Round Capital is making strides for startups and PR with the site, hackPR. Reporters will be able to put out requests to startups, and the platform will match them accordingly. On the other side, startups will benefit from a platform specifically devoted to them, creating relations with journalists from the ground up.
  • Facebook wants in on the visual content craze, adding Collections, a Pinterest-like photo feature, to its tool belt. Currently in test mode with seven retailers, Facebook users can potentially click “Collect” on an image of any brand’s products, and curate those images into a Collection folder.
  • Twitter launched a new user directory a few weeks ago in hopes of attracting more search engine traffic. A link to the directory can be found in the footer of the homepage, and contains an alphabetical collection of all account holders.
  • Twitter and Nielsen have joined together to help ad partners measure brand impact across Twitter with a new polling tool, Surveys. The ads will appear directly within a user’s activity feed, similar to Promoted Tweets.
  • In the political world, Mitt Romney’s attempt to distance himself from the now infamous “47 percent” remarks by saying they were “completely wrong” may have worked better than he expected; a Google image search for the phrase now returns a page full of Romney images.

Stats & Studies

Do you read most of your email at your desk or on the go? Stats from Litmus say that more email is opened on the iPhone rather than in desktop clients, such as Outlook or Apple Mail.

Bookmark of the Week

Check out SEOmoz’s (@SEOmoz) most recent Whiteboard Friday that focuses on modern SEO techniques, and how to move beyond keywords to drive traffic for a better experience.

What articles made your top list last week? We'd like to hear your opinions.

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