On Tuesday, July 24th, #NIMRI hosted its annual networking event on the rooftop of Hotel Viking. Professionals from Rhode Island & across New England enjoyed a summer evening in Newport & connected with new faces.
A big thanks to the staff at Hotel Viking for making the event possible!
SEO guru Eric Enge broke SEO and Social Media down into plain English at NIM’s Aug. 23 event. Stressing an integrative approach using SEO and Social, Enge said the best way to compete in SEO keywords is to be user-centric.
If anyone knows how to boil down complex ideas for an audience, it’s Enge, who is CEO of Stone Temple Consulting, a 25+ person SEO firm with offices in Massachusetts and California. Enge is also a frequent speaker at marketing conferences like SES, PubCon, and SMX.
According to Enge, the job of any website is to be first in that search. So his PowerPoint presentation boiled down complex SEO and Social Media topics so that attendees of all social media aptitudes could learn just how.
Integrating Search and Social Media highlights
- Spun or garbage content or cheap tricks to build brand and rank is not the best way to go
- Devote the right amount of space to anchor text, key phrases, brand names, and domains
- Avoid bad link-building and backlinking practices, e.g. low-cost or paid-for tactics
- Emphasize users in your web content, because they are central to the Google algorithm
- Make sure your brand lends itself to your audience (and if it doesn’t, ask yourself what it will take to get there)
- Provide diverse, quality content
- Title tags play a big role
- Meta description influences click-through rate
Learning Google’s Algorithm
Quoting Google Search Quality Group expert Matt Cutts throughout the talk, Enge explained that Google algorithm finds quality, diverse results help solve problems for users.
Enge discussed the impact of Google’s Panda algorithm update, ushered in on Feb. 23, 2011, and the impact of Penguin, which came to the fore April 24, 2012. He discussed the viability of SEO, Social, PR and Real Content integrated together for a masterful integrative marketing plan.
You can build a huge audience even if you’re a small brand, according to Enge, who said 48.8% of the population uses Google+ (that’s 150 million US users) and Google+ creates community circles. But he warned against trying to get too much out of driving FB “likes” and Google+ “+1’s” since these don’t specifically address which part of your content is working. Likes, +1’s and shares aren’t visible to Google. Tweeted links, for example, can help Google discover content faster than Facebook and Google+.
Title Tage, Meta Description & CTR
NIM attendees learned how large a role Title Tags play, how Meta Description can influence click-through rate (CTR), and more specifically, how Bing uses CTR.
“Saying SEO is dead is like saying you 85-year-old grandmother can configure your web server,” Enge explained.
In addition to good content that is user-focused, Enge provided an example of how one guest posting propelled one site from 0 to 100,000 customers using an integrated approach.
In the hierarchy of social media effort, the 1-on-1 meeting is at the top (takes the most effort), then the meeting, then meetups, then blogging, then LinkedIn, Twitter, then Facebook. The bottom line? Make the effort to meet with actual people to build real communities, and that will fuel social media activity that builds your reputation, since that’s what people (users) value most.
Thanks to Eric Enge for speaking in Newport; you can visit his website at www.stonetemple.com, follow him on Twitter @stonetemple, or add him to your Google+: +Eric Enge.
Thanks to all of you, NIM boasts the biggest turnout so far! 100% Networking saw 150 signups plus some walk-ins – lots of new faces. Raindrops were avoided, connections were made, views were enjoyed, drinks were downed.
Was it the venue (who doesn’t enjoy a view of Newport from a rooftop?) or is the word being spread?
Coming in August … NIM is pleased to feature “Search & Social Marketing” with global expert Eric Enge. Details are forthcoming.
Rhode Island-based Athletic Standard simplifies the college athlete recruiting process, resulting in a win-win for both student-athletes and the institutions where they will pursue higher education and athletics.
Through certified athleticism and athletic potential testing, Athletic Standard provides potential players a gateway to college coaches across the country. Testing is based on the EPIC Index, which was used by a major Division 1 university to win more than 25 national championships in 25 years.
Via social media, Athletic Standard registers prospective college athletes’ information and test results into a database that can be accessed by coaches across the nation. The coaches are able to view a complete athletic profile, which includes academic records, videos of students on the field or court, and more.
“Athletic Standard is revolutionizing the youth athletic market through this testing. If an athlete wants a recruiting edge then Athletic Standard is a must.” –Steve Gibbs, Hoop Mountain Basketball.
Hoop Mountain Basketball is one of Athletic Standard’s key players. With numerous locations throughout the country, facilitators of these programs assist scholastic basketball players in meeting their athletic and academic goals. The testing tool also provides student-athletes with maximum exposure to college and prep school scouts, which is a crucial connection for prospective players. Other key players include Noble and Greenough School and Elite 75, which is specific to New England.
Athletic Standard benefits Rhode Island by preventing nationwide coaches from overlooking the small state’s potential athletes. It gives coaches outside of our state the opportunity to observe the talents of students whom they might not have access to otherwise.
Who are Athletic Standard’s key players?
- Their key players are Mountain Hoop Basketball, Elite 75 New England and Noble and Greenough School.
What is the Process Athletic Standard uses?
- ATHLETIC STANDARD can help simplify the college recruiting process by testing and registering potential college athletes for free onto a secure database that can be seen by college coaches from all over the country. Coaches will have a certified athletic test score as well as a complete athletic profile including academic records, game video, and more. (athleticstandard.com)
How does Athletic Standard benefit Rhode Island student-athletes?
- Allows students to be matched with Rhode Island colleges.
- It helps high school and club coaches looking to provide opportunities for athletes.
- It helps college coaches who want to take advantage of the recruiting process a high school or club coach looking to provide o
Why do you personally find it interesting?
- I personally find it interesting because I have never heard of this type of organization. Rhode Island can benefit from this because it is the smallest state and high school athletes can be overlooked. I think the website is a great and safe way to help coaches and athletes in the right direction.
Alexa O’Rourke and Claudia Blanco
New Media events you may have missed
April 26, 2012 – Pinterest for Business: All You Need to Know
Annie Colella of Discover Newport (the Convention and Visitors Bureau) shared how Pinterest can work for your business. Attendees learned how to get to get started with Pinterest and how to get the most out of the social media site. Highlights from Pinterest for Business are posted on the Newport Interactive Marketers blog.
March 29, 2012 – The film “Connected” at the Jane Pickens Theater
Let’s take a look at our websites and social media from a proven sales perspective.
Does your website put customers off? You think your website describes your company and products or services. You think you’re not “in the way” when they come to your site to learn about you — or via social media Read More
1/26/2012 Make Your Website Mobile Friendly
Annette Tonti, CEO of MoFuse, shared mobile web best practices for publishers and advertisers. NIM attendees learned the difference between a mobile app and a mobile site and how to build effective web content.
Newport Interactive Marketers @ URI Social Media Social
Newport Interactive Marketers joined the University of Rhode Island for the URI Social Media Social. The NIM speakers provided insights to students and Newport Interactive Marketers about what an intern can do and how social media can boost a business.
Create and Market Your Brand Story
Jamie Palmer, the Senior Practitioner at University Business Consultants LLC, taught NIM attendees how to tactfully articulate the brand. Jamie stressed the importance of telling the story and not selling the story. NIM attendees learned how to engage their audience with messages that would resonate.
Enhance your Brand with Google+ and Twitter
Panelists Matt Medeiros of Slocum Studios and Michelle Quillin of New England Multimedia shared their insights on Google+ just as it launched. A general consensus was Google+ was not appropriate for all brands at that time. But for those who are concerned about SEO, it’s worth considering.
Intertwining Social Media and Customer Service
Chuck Dennis, Vice President and Senior Consultant for Knowledgence Associates, taught NIM how to infuse social media with customer service to boost engagement and ROI. NIM attendees learned how to interact with customers’ concerns and complaints through social media. Tips for detecting and redirecting what could become a PR debacle were also included.
Join NIM at the top of Newport Tweetup
Keeping the social in NIM, attendees gathered high over Newport for free appetizers, drink specials, and nonstop networking.
Drive ROI from Google Analytics
Boston University’s Center for Digital Imaging Arts instructor Jay Murphy showed Newport Interactive Marketers how to maximize Google Analytics to drive ROI. NIM attendees learned how to attract people that will actually buy and how to bring in more buyers and prospects.
Find out more about what attendees learned from “Google Analytics with Jay Murphy at Newport Interactive Marketers.” Discover how to get the best results from your online efforts, on Designated Editor’s blog.
SEO Mythology and Tactics from SEO Book Community Manager Eric Covino
NIM was thrilled to have Eric Covino of internationally regarded SEO community SeoBook.com and CreativeSignals.com answer questions on Search Engine Optimization and Google rankings. NIM attendees learned tactics to get search engines to rank their sites number one. Eric gave tips on how marketers can boost their websites in just one week! He also explained how SEO differs for service businesses and local retailers.
Facebook Marketing Best Practices to Boost ROI
Tom Schuyler, Pandemic Labs’ Director of Accounts, shared Facebook best practices and ROI measurement types. NIM attendees gained tools and insights to measure the value of marketing on Facebook. Tom explained how to utilize Facebook analytics to assess weaknesses and opportunities to make brand presence more valuable. Attendees learned the core metrics you can use to determine how much Facebook is doing for your brand/business.
Find out more about what Newport Interactive Marketers learned from “Facebook Marketing: Best Practices to Boost ROI.” Discover how to increase your return on investment using Facebook on Designated Editor’s blog.
Learn and Leverage Video for your Brand Success with Newport Interactive Marketers
NIM hosted Patrick Hughes and Scott Quillin to share their expert opinions on online video posts. NIM attendees learned why videos are so important to the success of their businesses. The experts explained how to use YouTube and how to start your own brand channel.
Mobile for Marketing with Newport Interactive Marketers
Tamara Gruber, the founder of Red Giant Consulting, guided NIM attendees into the mobile marketing world. She explored the difference between mobile apps and mobile sites and how they could optimize their businesses.
Social Media Secrets with Newport Interactive Marketers
Newport Interactive Marketers hosted a panel of social media experts to teach attendees how to optimize social media. Experts shared the best way to connect with customers through social media and discussed the most effective platforms to use.
Search Engine Optimization Insights with Newport Interactive Marketers
Newport Interactive Marketers hosted Doug Wilson SEO specialist at Netsense, a Pawtucket-based market leader in outsourced IT, website, and web marketing solutions. NIM attendees received a how-to seminar on search engine optimization insights. Attendees also learned how to boost their Google rankings.
Social Media Answers With Newport Interactive Marketers
NIM hosted nationally known expert Partick O’Malley. Patrick is the former VP of Operations for Northern Light, Google’s former top competitor, and has spoken across the country and nationally. He is an expert on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Google. Attendees gained insights to use social media to effectively boost their businesses.
Newport Interactive Marketers Networking
Stephen Melanson opened the attendees’ eyes to the importance of Verbal Branding. The seminar focused on concise messaging.
Newport Interactive Marketers Networking
Jessan Dunn Otis
Jessan Dunn Otis, a linchpin, recapped Seth Godin’s talk in Boston on June 17, 2010. The seminar also highlighted from the OMMA Conference.
Newport Interactive Marketers
Matthew Mamet of EditMe presented how small businesses and individuals can use a Wiki platform to share information and foster communities. NIM attendees learned how to up their online presence quickly and easily.
Let’s look at our websites and social media from a proven sales perspective. Revenue Coach and author Kristin Zhivago helps helps brands become to customer-centric.
What Your Current Clients Can Teach You
- What you think is important, isn’t what is important to the customer
- Go where the customers are: a lot of CEOs are NOT on Facebook
- If you’re imitating another company then you’re blowing it…customers are coming to you for a reason!
- Best market research/data mining is asking existing customers the RIGHT questions
- Client interviews will reveal the trends, in 6 phone calls; they’ll all basically say the same thing
- Anticipate their questions and help buyers on their journey. You guess= you lose!
- Have to ask current customers the right questions in the right way
- People are doing their homework on you before they even contact you
- If you call your customers yourself, you will still get the data, they’ll just be more polite
- If you’re only asking one question of an existing client, ask them what they would do if they were in your shoes.
- Channels,social media etc.- without customer knowledge is like whistling in the wind
- Treat customers properly and give them what they want
Understanding the Buyer’s Process
- Buying process changing radically. Overall, you are NOT in control of the process
- Buying: First friends, then websites, and then Google
- 80% of buyer’s questions are answered by others, not you!
- Need to know why and how buyer’s bought from you
- What’s going to happen to me after I buy? A key question buyers have that you need to answer.
Common Marketing Flaws
- “Marketing is no longer about what you say, it’s about what you do.”
- Don’t follow fads and don’t obsess with channels!
- Is your data flawed? If you’re relying on salespeople, focus groups, social media, surveys and 3rd parties, the chances are your data is flawed
- Stop selling and start supporting the buyer process
- Relationship marketing is a misnomer. Do you want car dealers showing up to dinner?
- Surveys are a waste of time, people will not say in writing what they are really thinking
- Need to understand where you are in the spectrum to know what to say on your site, newsletter and other content
- Everyone is doing something that gets in the way of sales
- Usually you’re screwing up how you’re presenting the product or something else that’s fixable
- Are you emphasizing what everyone already promises anyway? Everyone expects a boat to float
- The problem with social media, It’s the biggest time-suck!
- Usability matters more than design: We don’t look at billboards on the highway never mind on your screen
- The difference between branding and your brand? Branding is what you say; your brand is what they say about you
- Branding is the promise you make. Your brand is the promises you keep
A special thanks to all the NIM attendees who tweeted during the event! @KristinZhivago, @JoAnnLefebvre, @SusanneDay, @johnpicozzi, @PRnick, @scottindermaur, @vallerieMalkin, @trendyjenny, @NEMultimedia, @sue_DesigEditor, @NewMediaNPT
Don’t miss Newport Interactive Marketers’ next gathering: March 29 public is welcome to the film “Connected” at the Jane Pickens Theater. Tickets are $10, payable to the theater. Preregistration requested.
Newport Interactive Marketers members will join the University of Rhode Island’s student-led Public Relations Society for URI’s first Social Media Social on Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2011 at 6:30 p.m. on the Kingston campus. For more information or to register, visit http://bit.ly/NIMatURI11.
The public is invited to gain insights from social media pros, students and to network with web and social media professionals, business owners, and members of Newport Interactive Marketers, the region’s premiere resource for social media and Web 2.0 networking and learning.
The Social Media Social will feature Newport Interactive Marketers:
Kevin Vine, Dunkin’ Brands Interactive Marketing Manager,
Shawn Simmons, Director Public Relations at StyleWeek Providence and
NIM Founder Suzanne McDonald, Chief Content and Social Strategist at Designated Editor.
- URI Communications Assistant Professor Adam Roth
- Nichole Wardle of Longwood Events
- Brian Hodge of GoProvidence.com, and
- Joannah Portman-Daly of the URI Writing Department.
As a Social Media Strategist and professor of Social Media Strategies at URI, Newport Interactive Marketers founder Suzanne McDonald will discuss how social media interns can benefit businesses and organizations as well as what interns should know to be prepared for the workplace.
McDonald will also discuss social media in the context of:
- What can an intern do?
- How is social media part of every career?
- How can social networking boost business?
Newport Interactive Marketers members attending:
Paula Keogh, Pixels & Pulp
Sherwoode Grosvenor Sherwoode Grosvenor Enterprises
Terry T. Grosvenor R&T Grosvenor Publishing
Rick Grosvenor, Prudential Prime Properties
Jennifer ONeil, Embrace Home Loans
John Mulroy, Energy Marketing Consulting Group
Bill Flanagan, Alteryx
Paula Sheldrick, Virtual DBS
Jon Guinn, NetNoticed
Austin White, Embrace Home Loans
Lynne Donahue, Seaside Consulting Inc
David Englund, Englund Studio / MobileVerb
Hal Landen Video University
Karlie Girouard, It’s Right:RI Matchmaker
Jon Cyr, Cloudy IT
Matt Medeiros, Slocum Studio
JoAnn Lefebvre, Shift 2 Inbound Marketinghttp://shift2inbound.com/
Racheal Renfree, The Inner Office, Inc
Mark Bush, Forty7Ronin
Julie Woodside, Designated Editor
Scott Indermaur, Indermaur Photography, Inc.
Dana Duellman, Indermaur Photography, Inc.
Captain Mike Brady, Employment Opportunity Expo
The “Social Media Social” will be held in the Memorial Union Ballroom, 50 Lower College Road, Kingston, R.I. 02881, and will offer free ice cream for all. Sponsored by the University of Rhode Island Harrington School of Communication and Media and the Communications Studies Department, this event is free and open to the public.