LeadsCon East will be here before you know it, and MediaWhiz will be right in the thick of things at this annual conference for vertical media and direct response marketing.
MediaWhiz Senior Vice President
Daryl Colwell, MediaWhiz’s senior vice president of business development, will moderate a panel of experts discussing their brands’ experiences with performance marketing. Does it live up to the hype? Or has performance marketing become a channel that marketers must unwillingly implement into their marketing strategies? Find out at the Aug. 14 LeadsCon East panel, “What Brands Really Think of Performance Marketing,” moderated by MediaWhiz.
Panel: What Brands Really Think of Performance Marketing
Date: August 14
Location: Hilton Hotel, New York, NY
Performance-based and lead-gen marketers are obviously biased participants in the value you ascribe to a pay-per-action model. Having heard from large agencies, it’s time to hear from some of the better known customer acquisition-focused brands. Do they have a love-hate or a love-love relationship with performance marketing? It should be a no-brainer given their many direct response initiatives, right? Find out whether they truly find value from the channel or whether it is a necessary evil they would rather do without. Plus, find out what it takes to not only earn their business but keep it.
- Moderator: Daryl Colwell, Senior Vice President, MediaWhiz
- Keith Weinberger, Senior Vice President, Marketing, Empire Today
- Brian Dominick, Director of US Payment Options – Digital Acquisition, American Express
- Mike Venables, Media Director, Neo@Ogilvy
- Lou Cohen, SVP – Head of Search and Affiliate Marketing, Citibank
Founded in 2007, LeadsCon showcases the best people and companies in vertical media media and engagement advertising. More than 5,000 people rely each year on LeadsCon for unparalleled insights and access to marketing leaders. Click here to view the conference agenda.
By Shon Greenblatt | Senior Director, Account Management
Editor’s note: This is the fourth post in a series focusing on best practices for lead generation in the online education industry.
Online performance marketing remains the most cost effective form of marketing and advertising. As society becomes more digitally focused, and consumers increasingly user their smartphones and tablets to run and organize their lives, advertisers will recognize additional opportunities to reach out to them directly to share the benefit of their perspective goods and services. Colleges and universities are no different.
In the 10 years I have worked in online marketing, I have worked with many of the nation’s top educators and administrators. In that time I have been a witness to the incredible growing demand of online education. The reach of the Web is endless. Educational opportunities that were once unavailable to many people are now available to almost anyone, anywhere and at any time, throughout the world. (more…)
By Frances Gutierrez | Education Project Strategist
Editor’s note: This is the third post in a series focusing on best practices for lead generation in the online education industry.
The tide is changing in higher education. A more diverse student population can be found at most college campuses throughout America. The opportunities — and challenges — for universities to find, enroll and retain students have never been greater.
Two recent reports underscore this emerging reality.
A press release from the Association of Private Sector Colleges and Universities (APSCU) reported that a surprising 92% of current students meet one or more standards of a non-traditional student. A glut of undereducated employees in the workforce — 90 million of them, according to APSCU — has helped widened the gap in the labor market. With an expected 85% of new jobs requiring a postsecondary education, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for higher-learning institutions to close the gap.
Institutions are facing challenges with student recruitment, retention, employer advocacy and more while striving to gain a competitive advantage.
Through years of admissions management experience I have gained an in-depth understanding of the ever-changing realm and unique marketing challenges of private higher-education.
What’s the silver bullet to achieving online marketing success in higher education? While it may seem rudimentary, the quick answer is clear: put the student first. Develop and maintain a student-centric approach. This requires higher education marketers to make all decisions with the student experience as the main priority.
By Caroline Ramos | Director, Client Services
Editor’s note: This is the first post in a series 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…)
By Giles McGrath | @GilesMcGrath | Creative Director
Last year there were a plethora of logo changes across many major businesses. In the case of American Airlines, not every logo change is welcomed by customers or the general public.
Logo changes can play a major role in developing a new image for your company, but not all logo changes require major design changes; just ask the Minnesota Vikings.
Recently, MediaWhiz Creative Director Giles McGrath took some time to answer questions related to the benefits – and potential pitfalls – of brands redesigning their logos. He also offered some best practices you can use to ensure the successful redesign of your logo.
1) How do you know when it’s really time for a redesign and that you’re not just listening to others who say you need a new logo? How do you make your new logo/branding stand out?
There is no simple answer as to when a logo should be redesigned. Often companies will undertake a redesign prematurely. Some questions brands should ask themselves prior to undertaking a redesign include:
- How does my logo reflect on my brand positioning and personality of my business?
- Is my logo still unique in the market?
- Has the focus of my business changed?
- Would a new logo reflect the new direction of my business? (more…)
By Marc Purtell | Director, SEO
Today, we released a new eBook on content marketing. Titled, “Content Marketing Like a Pro,” the report outlines the key pillars to content marketing and advises marketers on best practices for crafting and executing successful content marketing programs.
This eBook also provides a framework marketers can use to improve their brand’s SEO and generate leads via a content marketing program.
When consumers first encounter a brand digitally it’s not always the brand’s website that makes the first impression. What makes the greatest impression is the authority of the brand’s website measured by where it ranks when a consumer searches.
Content marketing is a method to build this authority and rank.
Learn how to use content marketing to generate leads and improve your brand’s SEO with MediaWhiz’s new eBook, “Content Marketing Like a Pro.” (more…)
By Keith Trivitt | @KeithTrivitt | Director, Marketing and Communications
An article written by Marc Purtell, director of SEO at MediaWhiz, and published Nov. 20, 2012, in Search Engine Journal, has been honored with a “Best of SEJ” award for 2012. Titled, “SEO in 2013: The Rising Influence of AuthorRank,” it was the most-read article on Search Engine Journal in November, according to the publication’s editors.
In honoring Purtell with the “Best of SEJ” distinction, former Search Engine Journal Editor-in-Chief Phil Butler described the article as an “insightful look at the emerging value of authors in search [that] from one of the industry’s most knowledgeable authors, or a super digitally influential company, MediaWhiz.”
Below is an excerpt of the article.
SEO in 2013: The Rising Influence of AuthorRank
By Marc Purtell | Director, SEO | @MarcPurtell
When considering major trends that will impact SEO in 2013 it’s clear that AuthorRank will play an increasingly important role in marketers’ search and SEO strategies.
PageRank has long been the standard high-level metric used to identify the relative quality of a Web page. There is arguably limited value in using PageRank as a quality metric over the last few years, but it can still be meaningful in conjunction with other quality metrics (i.e. domain authority, page authority, etc.)
In 2013 a new quality metric will take the spotlight when it comes to page quality and search engine ranking. This metric is affectionately known as AuthorRank (or Agent Rank, according to Google’s patent).
Here’s why AuthorRank will help reshape SEO in 2013:
AuthorRank: A Brief Overview
Content quality, as measured by search engines, is no longer based solely on the authority of a domain or Web page. It is increasingly based on the reputation and authority of the individual that authored the content. This reputational score grades authors on the Web and used that grade when ordering natural search engine results.
Read the full piece at Search Engine Journal.
By Marc Purtell | @MarcPurtell | Director, SEO
Every webmaster’s and SEO professional’s nightmare is seeing a sudden plummet of those hard-earned Google rankings. The chaos that ensues in trying to pinpoint just what happened is never a welcomed experience.
The good news is that Google has been as transparent as ever in recent months. It offers new information, tools and methods to help webmasters beg for mercy, such as Webmaster Tools alerts, re-inclusion requests and the Link Disavow tool.
Begging for mercy isn’t always the best course of action, however, depending on the circumstances of the issues surrounding the drop in ranking. It should be a last resort once you have identified the reason for the issues with a great deal of certainty, done everything possible to resolve the issues and still don’t see a positive result. In order to take the right course of action after a Google manual review, the first step is to know if a manual review actually took place.
By Peter Klein | SVP, Media Services
There’s no doubt that performance marketing is a significant force in online marketing, and will continue to grow. What will 2013 have in store for the performance marketing industry? As I see it, there are four key trends that will influence performance marketers’ work in the new year:
1. More brands will invest in performance marketing. The 2012 IAB Internet Advertising Revenue Report indicates that more than two-thirds of all marketing transactions will be paid for on a performance basis. Total U.S. spend on performance marketing will grow by almost $5 billion, to $25 billion in online advertising revenue, versus 2011 spend. This indicates that performance marketing will continue to dominate the online ad-spend model. Brands that consistently miss their online marketing ROI targets will comprise the majority of new spend on performance marketing campaigns, as they seek to take advantage of the industry’s guaranteed results. Traditional agencies will continue to focus on branding for their clients in the digital space, and farm out performance marketing budgets to trusted affiliate networks and marketers.
2. Lead quality and compliance take center stage. As brands continue to invest their marketing dollars in performance marketing, they will place increasing pressure on performance marketers to achieve their investment goals. The SaaS and lead quality product market will blossom. These two dynamic sectors of online markets will help advertisers pay for only top-quality leads, enabling performance marketers to get paid appropriately for such quality. The government will continue to get involved in online marketing regulations, such as Do Not Track legislation, and more states will attempt to pass nexus tax laws. Efforts will likely be minimally intrusive, and the industry will push for self-regulation efforts as a means to limit involvement.
3. Mobile lead-gen has its moment in the sun. Mobile marketing will become a much larger piece of the advertising budget in 2013. eMarketer forecasts 138 million smartphone users in the U.S. next year, comprising 43% of the total population. It will be critical for advertisers to optimize websites and create shorter lead-generation forms with click-to-call for mobile devices. In our “always on” world, consumers need instant gratification from the brands they allow into their online world. Advertisers that provide consumers with access to immediate customer service will win their business.
4. Consolidation of media channels. A larger premium will be placed on internal media sources to provide quality and consistency. As such, the lead-generation industry will see a continued and more aggressive consolidation of affiliate networks. Many affiliates will merge with or acquire one or more of their affiliate media sources. Specifically, many mailers and media buyers will join forces with networks to increase margin, reduce compliance risk and deliver on allocated budget to survive and create a competitive advantage.
By Peter Klein | SVP, Media Services
Editor’s note: The following post was originally published at CMO.com.
Long dismissed as a niche form of online marketing, performance marketing has become a multibillion-dollar force in the digital-media ecosystem. For CMOs, performance marketing, of which affiliate marketing comprises the largest share of revenue growth, is no longer a marketing strategy that can be ignored or delegated to junior-level marketing managers. It is now a driving force behind many brands’ online growth and customer-acquisition efforts. As such, it requires CMOs’ devout attention to properly use and scale in order to realize long-term customer-acquisition value.
The rise of affiliate marketing, and its growing influence with digital marketers, is no accident.
Affiliate marketing has existed for more than a decade. It helps advertisers achieve their ROI goals by using publishers (affiliates) to conduct their marketing efforts via multiple media channels on a pay-for-performance basis.
Affiliate marketing can be used for any vertical, brand, company, language, time frame, or demographic. Importantly, it is a useful testing ground for CMOs who desire online marketing channel options, instant gratification, speed, and a clear measurement of return on advertising spend (ROAS) or return on marketing (ROM) investment. In fact, many affiliate marketers are experts in industry metrics and traffic sources, and can help CMOs develop campaigns based on long-term brand and customer-acquisition. This is critical as the industry evolves into a larger mobile-consumer target.
But affiliate marketing’s benefits extend beyond lead generation. Affiliate marketing professionals and networks are at the forefront of innovative online marketing campaigns. The rise of social networking sites, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Pandora, were largely built on affiliate marketing ad spend revenues.
Every brand in the digital age needs a strong lead-generation component to its online marketing strategy. Affiliate marketing is CMOs’ answer to that need.
Read the rest of the article at CMO.com.
The benefits of affiliate marketing are more thoroughly explained in a new MediaWhiz insight paper from, “The CMO’s Guide to Affiliate Marketing.” It outlines critical steps CMOs should take to begin working with an affiliate; defines core terminology; and information on why it is critical for CMOs to invest some of their marketing spend in the affiliate marketing channel.