Editor’s note: This is the first in a series of blog posts focusing on best practices for lead generation in the online education industry.
Year after year universities struggle with enrollment rates. At the same time marketers are testing new advertising channels, shifting budgets, designing new creative assets and everything in between to reach that seemingly elusive enrollment goal.
But why is nothing changing? Why are enrollment rates dropping after all that investment in time, money and effort?
It’s simple, really: The ﬁrst point of contact is your ﬁrst impression and it can make or break the success of a prospect’s enrollment. The best advertising campaign in the world is frustratingly useless if the admissions process deters prospective students.
Many universities with large marketing budgets fail to focus on what’s happening right under their nose, and in most cases, right down the hallway. I have seen everything from a first point of contact being a direct-mail piece to callbacks that occur two weeks after an online information request is submitted.
A successful online marketing campaign for a college or university isn’t just measured by a conversion rate. Performance marketing in education requires three critical components to be successful:
High-quality traffic sources: You need to have traffic (students) who are interested in learning more about a particular school.
Optimized creative: A high-quality landing page, great email design and banner ads that really catch the eye of prospective students.
Structured workflow: A cohesive admissions process that is ready to work a lead. (more…)
There’s no question that mobile marketing and advertising is the hottest area of digital marketing at the moment. Big consumer brands are seemingly tripping over themselves to launch the fanciest mobile app.
We’ve written a lot recently about the foibles of mobile marketing campaigns that don’t have a direct lead generation or sales component tied into them. Heck, it’s for this reason that we launchedMediaWhiz Mobile, our new mobile performance marketing service. Advertisers and publishers consistently tell us there is a big need to help them more profitably engage, acquire and retain customers and generate mobile-specific traffic.
And yet a number of leading advertisers complain that all of their mobile spending doesn’t improve their most important marketing metric: sales.
Mobile certainly captures a lot of eyeballs but its ability to produce a consumer action — leads, sales, downloads, etc. — is often lacking.
That may be starting to change, though. A recent eMarketer report shined some light on how mobile branding and marketing campaigns are starting to translate to sales and brand lift. And, most crucially for advertising, mobile marketing spending is beginning to make a serious dent in consumers’ purchase intent. (more…)
Much of the recent talk in the online marketing world has centered around the emerging concept of SoLoMoCo. For the uninitiated, that stands for SOcial LOcal MObile COmmerce. Boiled down to its most basic parts, this funny looking acronym encapsulates the future of digital marketing: everything social, everything local and everything mobile.
It’s with that perspective in mind that a recent report issued by the Local Search Association (look them up here) caught my eye. The report finds that nearly half (48% to be precise) of mobile phone owners use their device to look for local information.
The Local Search Association findings point to the increased role that smartphones and tablets are increasingly playing for the search industry in the United States. In particular, the report points to the need for marketers to view mobile at a local level.
From local search and SEO, to local mobile (what we at MediaWhiz call “LoMo”), online marketing is becoming more targeted and geo-specific. That presents huge opportunities to marketers that wisely find ways to blend their traditional and mobile SEO campaigns to achieve comprehensive search results.
As my colleague Marc Purtell, MediaWhiz’s director of SEO, attests, the future of SEO is local mobile. (more…)
What’s driving the biggest gains in Facebook’s worldwide growth? It’s not the U.S. It’s emerging markets.
According to eMarketer, India, Brazil and Russia, along with the Middle East and Africa, are contributing the most new users each month to Facebook. According to new estimates from eMarketer, Facebook will pass 1 billion active users worldwide in 2013 as the company sees particularly strong growth in its Asia-Pacific, Middle East and Africa, and Latin American user bases, with each region set to rise by about 30% or more this year. By next year, Facebook will reach 1.26 billion global users.
These astonishing numbers — the sheer fact Facebook will soon have 1 billion active monthly users worldwide — combined with Facebook’s recent implementation of new CPA bidding for direct marketers, portend huge opportunities for performance and affiliate marketers. Just tapping into 1/10th of this user base could hold significant potential online marketing value to most brands.
What is your brand doing to tap into Facebook’s expanding performance marketing opportunities? (more…)
SMX London is right around the corner, and the conference agenda is packed with some great panels discussing everything from prioritizing marketing efforts to advanced tactical recommendations. Search and social media are two intertwined topics on which there will be a great deal of discussion.
This panel discussion will focus on the implications of Graph Search on SEO, including the opportunities and challenges it will present advertisers and publishers.
As part of the discussion, I will present a history of Facebook advertising as it pertains to the evolution of search within Facebook. I’ll how Graph Search fits into the direction Facebook is going with its search and advertising options. Of course, knowing how and why an advertising medium has evolved can provide some very strong clues into what the future of marketing through Facebook may look like. (more…)
That’s where you’ll find us June 5-7 at the Rosen Shingle Creek resort in Orlando, Fla. There, you can chat with Kristen, Kyle, Caroline and Shon from the MediaWhiz team at booth #708. We’ll be on-site throughout the convention to discuss our education-specific performance marketing services, including our new education portal, ChooseYourColleges.com.
About MediaWhiz’s Education Marketing Services
MediaWhiz has the lead-generation tools to make your student prospecting strategy a success!
We offer a comprehensive suite of performance marketing tools and services designed to help advertisers, colleges and universities engage, enroll and retain prospective students. Our education-specific Internet portal, ChooseYourColleges.com, offers a well-balanced lead-generation platform that helps students narrow their search by curriculum, geography and affordability.
By using a variety of online marketing channels MediaWhiz can accurately target, attract and help match prospective students to schools that meet their needs. We ensure a consistent flow of highly qualified candidates for our advertisers and abundant traffic for our publishers. (more…)
It’s not uncommon in today’s SEO landscape to wake up and find a sudden drop of organic search traffic and/or keyword rankings. When such a disaster occurs, most large brands have access to a qualified SEO agency or robust in-house team to identify and rectify any issues that led to the drops. For smaller brands with limited budget allocated to SEO, this could mean the end of the organic search channel as a driver of business.
It doesn’t have to be this way. As I explore in a new report, “10 Free, Must-Have SEO Tools,” there are a variety of excellent free SEO tools that marketers can use to analyze the situation and identify the problem and solution.
By taking advantage of the intelligence that is available for free, brands with low budgets can recover from SEO issues in order to return to leveraging the organic search channel as a revenue generator. Below is a review of three such SEO tools.
An invaluable resource for SEO experts and webmasters alike, Google Webmaster Tools suite provides insight into the overall health of a website and explicitly points out many issues that can negatively affect a site’s organic search health.
Getting started is as simple as signing up for a Google account and verifying ownership of the website in question by adding either a verification file to the website’s server – including a verification meta tag on the homepage – or signing in to the site’s domain name provider.
This tool is provided by Google at no charge so there is no excuse for any website to not have an account.
Once a Google Webmaster Tools account is active, upon logging in Google will provide a list of recent alerts for each website being managed under the account. This is the first place to look for any issues that may have caused a loss of performance. More information on the issues identified as well as a list of recommended actions can be seen by clicking on “View details”.
If there are no alerts or if the recommended actions from the alerts do not remedy the issue, the next place to look is in the “Health” section within the Google Webmaster Tools interface using the left sidebar navigation. There are several reports in the Health section, including Crawl Stats, Blocked URLs, Fetch as Google, Index Status and Malware.
The Crawl Stats report is very useful in troubleshooting because it provides both a list of URLs that return errors and a timeline showing the total number of errors found on a day-to-day basis. This timeline can help pinpoint the day things went awry if there is a sudden increase in errors detected. For example, if a recent change to the website caused a number of pages to return server errors, that could definitely account for the loss of organic traffic. (more…)
Mike Sisto, MediaWhiz’s director of performance marketing, has worked in performance marketing for 14 years. He’s seen it all, from the earliest days of the industry to the current evolution in which media, mobile, content, SEO and many other digital media channels are mixed together. Needless to say, he knows how to help his clients engage, acquire and retain customers more profitably.
Recently, we sat down with Mike to discuss some of the most common questions he gets from clients about accountability in affiliate marketing campaigns, email acquisition and optimizing lead quality.
How do you ensure accountability of affiliates for campaign and creative materials compliance?
We first establish accountability with each affiliate by employing a suite of external and internal tools to monitor advertisements. We hold publishers accountable for compliance violations. Once our high standards are made clear, the possibility of losing out on business due to compliance violations exerts pressure on affiliates to comply with advertiser guidelines. With adherence, publishers have the opportunity to cultivate a long-term business relationship with MediaWhiz as they continue to provide quality traffic via compliant marketing practices. (more…)
MediaWhiz Senior Vice President of Media Services Peter Klein is a fount of information about performance marketing. Especially affiliate marketing. The guy loves affiliate marketing. The good kind, of course. Not the fraud-based affiliate marketing of the past. That kind of junk pains him. It
It’s with this perspective in mind that I recently sat down with Pete, who oversees MediaWhiz’s affiliate marketing business, to discuss a topic that he is particularly passionate about: launching performance marketing campaigns. damages the industry’s reputation, he says, and makes it harder for reputable affiliate networks, such as MonetizeIt, the MediaWhiz affiliate network, to earn the trust and business of today’s digitally savvy CMO.
Editor’s note: “A Day In the Life” is a regular editorial series in which MediaWhiz employees discuss their work and lives and how the two interact
Recently, I spoke with Bryan Scheiner, client services account manager at MediaWhiz, to discuss his life as an SEO expert by day and a music blogger by night. Bryan works with a number of MediaWhiz clients to help them develop and enhance their organic site traffic.
When he’s not working out of the MediaWhiz’s downtown New York City office, Bryan is busy with his hip-hop group WeatherPROOF, which most recently released its album “Dirty Naturals.” Away from the stage you can find him honing his blogging and SEO skills at TheBeeShine.com. There, Bryan has recorded more than 1,200 interviews with such artists as Redman, Questlove, 9th Wonder, DJ Premier, Pete Rock and more.
Watch the below video to learn more about Bryan and how MediaWhiz has helped propel his SEO career and his passion as a music blogger.