People Magazine

Retailers Fight Exile From Gmail Inboxes
September 17, 2013

Even in an age of Twitter posts and Instagram photos, email is still the way marketers reach the hearts—and wallets—of consumers. And that is why retailers are up in arms about Google’s latest tweak to Gmail. Over the summer, the Internet behemoth gradually introduced a new inbox with an assortment of folders for different types of messages, including a main inbox and ones for social networking alerts, e-commerce promotions, updates from businesses like banks and mailing-list messages. For Google, it’s another moneymaking avenue

12 Social Media Mistakes Entrepreneurs Make
July 11, 2013

We've asked a coterie of marketing experts to join Entrepreneur's Team Digital to provide answers to your common questions about building an online presence. … In this week's column, our Team Digital answers: What's a big social media mistake business owners make? Brian Solis: Ignoring social media altogether, because they don't have time to understand its impact. They write it off in the name of focusing on other more pressing priorities—or they misinterpret social media as distractions, silly networks and apps that kids use. Another mistake business owners make is they jump in to all of the hottest social properties

The ZIP Code Turns 50
July 2, 2013

1963 was a momentous year in America: President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech at the March on Washington and, somewhat less heralded by all but the most fervent postal historians, the ZIP code was introduced. Since its founding in 1775, the post office relied on hand sorting based on local addresses to get mail where it was supposed to go. A piece of mail often went through 10 postal workers before making it to its recipient. But by the 1940s

The Psychology of Sales: 6 Facts Every Brand Should Know
May 21, 2013

Discount retailers, such as Target, Macy’s and J.C. Penney, have tried various pricing strategies over the years to lure customers to buy more of their products. The primary tool in the competitive arsenal is to offer the best value because they know that customers are motivated to seek out price savings and great deals on frequently purchased products. Seems simple right? Just offer low prices and people will come. That is not necessarily the case, though. Feelings affect our shopping decisions. An economist would say that customers are rational beings who try to get the most value

Storify Business Launches for Brands—What You Need to Know
April 24, 2013

Social media may have changed the way we get our news, but Burt Herman and Xavier Damman, co-founders of Storify, have revolutionized the way we get our news through social media. Since Storify became available to the public, the service has offered storytellers—from news organizations to bloggers to brands—a way to curate the best tweets, videos and photos to essentially shrink social media. In Herman’s words, the service can “stop time.” For instance, within moments of a shooting reported on the campus of MIT on Thursday night

What Facebook and Vogue Have in Common: Users Love the Ads
April 17, 2013

As Felix Salmon points out in his piece on the new school of online ads, one thing so-called native advertising and its many permutations has in common with the best old-fashioned ads is that people actually enjoy viewing it. Thus BuzzFeed’s “12 (Screwed) People Who Need A Better Tour Guide” makes for a fun series of animated gifs showing bad travel scenarios, and it also turns out to be a low-key ad for its sponsor, Contiki Vacations. Book a trip with them, the post mentions in the intro, and “you won’t end up in trouble like these poor suckers.”

How Gaming Boosted a Software Company's Customer Engagement by 55%
March 26, 2013

When marketing software firm Eloqua launched its customer community called Topliners a few years ago, people were engaged, but only somewhat. The level of engagement on the site essentially plateaued, according to Heather Foeh, the company's director of customer culture. As it turns out, all the community's members needed was a little incentive. With the addition of a gamification module from Bunchball, engagement improved by 55 percent, and stayed high. "It's not like it took a dip after the newness wore off," Foeh says. Not only did adding gaming elements give members of the community something to reach for

How 7 Businesses Improved Their Email Marketing Campaigns
March 19, 2013

Although some marketers and analysts love to declare that “email marketing is dead,” nothing could be further from the truth. Yes, the old-style of top-down, one way email communication is dead, and has been for some time. If you’re still struggling with a low open rate, a dismal click-through rate, or wondering “where did I go wrong?,” these seven businesses might provide some inspiration. Improve deliverability rates: According to a MarketingSherpa case study, TBC, a tire corporation with numerous online brands improved its email deliverability from 60 percent to 99 percent by following a few basic steps

Emerging Technologies Demand New Marketing Fundamentals
March 8, 2013

Marketers who try to respond with today's practices and skills will fail. Emerging technologies—from smart objects and wearables to behind-the-scenes taxonomy tools—are radically changing how customers think, act and relate to others. And, in turn, forcing a rebuild of how brands must go to market on every dimension. It's clear that marketers who try to respond to this seismic shift with today's practices and skills will fail. So how can marketers adapt? There are four fundamentals to consider: Design is the new marketing. The efficacy of turnkey marketing solutions used to engage with customers is waning.

How to Support SEO With Social Media and Content Marketing
February 27, 2013

I've worked, on and off, in SEO for over 16 years. It's far from my speciality these days, but I do work for an agency where the core business product is search and I'm often asked what social can do to help. Here's a few suggestions I give the folks in the SEO department when they ask: Tweeting used to help in getting content indexed. Re-tweets helped it to get indexed quicker. Alas, since Google stopped paying for the full fire hose of Twitters data this no longer appears so