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Social Media Breakfast – The ROI of Social Media


I had the pleasure of both attending and speaking at my first Social Media Breakfast here in Portland, Maine.

As promised during my lecture, here are the slides from today’s session.  Please if you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact me anywhere I can be found online.  I am pretty much an open book, so whatever works best for you.

Here is the PDF of my presentation on Social Media ROI.

I am a digital marketing freelancer and work with agencies and businesses of all sizes, so if you would like to talk to me about helping your business or agency, happy to help.

I am also happy to be a local resource if you have questions.


Email Metrics (KPIs) – Expanded

Behavior Flow Diagram - 707 Marketing

One of the most popular posts on my blog over the past couple years has been my email metrics (KPIs) post from last year.  Measuring marketing programs is very important to organizations who are making investments in their business online.  Analytics helps to make those investments transparent to us.

I wanted to add some key performance metrics for emails you can do in order to get the next level or reporting on your campaign performance.  The information below is not only for emails, but you can use this information for advertising creative or other campaign initiatives your organization may be doing.

Google Analytics allows for campaign codes to be put into your links, which can allow more granular reporting via your analytics later on.  Here is a page that helps you to create those campaign codes.  Here is what an example link would look like with all the campaign information in the link:  www.707marketing.com/?utm_source=Monthly_Email&utm_medium=email&utm_term=1234ABC&

Let me go into a bit of detail on the campaign codes:

  • utm_source:  Required. Use utm_source to identify a search engine, newsletter name, or other source.
    Example: utm_source=Monthly_Email
  • utm_medium:  Required. Use utm_medium to identify a medium such as email or cost-per- click.
    Example: utm_medium=email
  • utm_term:  Used for paid search mostly. Use utm_term to note the keywords for this ad.  I use this for campaign codes I develop so they are all unique.  You can use any of these spots for any type of tracking you want to do.  I do recommend keeping it consistent however, so if you go one direction stay that way for consistency.
    Example: utm_term=1234ABC
  • utm_content:  Used for A/B testing and content-targeted ads. Use utm_content to differentiate ads or links that point to the same URL.
    Examples: utm_content=html
  • utm_campaign:  Used for keyword analysis. Use utm_campaign to identify a specific product promotion or strategic campaign.
    Example: utm_campaign=May_Campaign_Control

Behavior_Flow_LocationOnce you have this information in your links, we can use the behavior flow diagrams to see the performance of campaigns.  What kinds of interactions did we generate for our users?  The diagram below is a landing page summary.  The red lines in the diagram represent the exits from a page.  This allows us to see if they just went to the landing page and read what you had and went further into the site or if they left.

Navigation to the Behavior Flow is on the left in Google Analytics and it looks like the image to the right.

Once you click in, you will see something similar to the diagram below.  From here you can look for your campaigns, terms, etc…

Behavior Flow Diagram - 707 Marketing

Almost as important is the landing page for your campaigns.  When you work hard to get that click from any ads, social media, blog post, affiliate links, etc…  you do not want to lose the user once they hit their destination.  We also need to be able to track if the users convert on the landing page and we can use event tracking to help.  Here is a tool to add event tracking to your landing page forms.

Once you have event tracking installed on your call to action button, you can see how many of those event happened in Google Analytics (A post for another day).

I hope this was helpful and as always, if you have questions do not hesitate to contact me.


Google AdWords Livestream Update

Google Logo

Google recently gave a keynote speech on the new features and functions within Google AdWords for 2015.  See the speech below.

The new tools are meant to assist with the fractured customer journey which occurs with customers in today’s economy.  Example:  Over 50% of the searches from customers looking to buy an automobile take place on a mobile device before a purchase is made.  69% of travel searches occur while consumers are doing other activities such as waiting in line or during a commute.  Another interesting note that was made was 9 out of 10 smart phone users say they start a task on one device and then finish it on another.

What is the fractured customer journey?  The customer journey used to be a bit more clear cut, but today we have so much information it tends to jump around.  We may be shopping inside the store, but before we make a purchase, we look up ratings and reviews on the product we are buying.  If we are cooking, we may look up a recipe online really quick to see what other ingredients we could add to our food.  When we are traveling, we may look up reviews on a specific hotel, inn, or campground.

We shop differently, now that we live in an almost always connected world.  Information is just a few taps away on our mobile devices or a few keystrokes on our keyboards.  Businesses need to be where the customers are looking.

Here are some of the new updates and tools:

  • Automobile ads will allow images to get more engagement vs. simple text ads.   If you tap on the images or click, more information will appear for the make of automobile.  Dealer locations and the ability to call with also exist in the ad format and this is available now in beta.
  • Hotel ads have changed and consumers can book right from the comparison application.
  • Shopping ads now have expanded information such as reviews, pricing, and stores who are carrying the products.
  • Google comparison tool for insurance, which will expand beyond just price to ratings and reviews.  They will also have some local agent support (only in California, Texas, Pennsylvania and Illinois for now.
  • Google compare has improved and added functionality for credit card and mortgages as well.  Vist the following site to get more information on Google Compare.  https://www.google.com/compare
  • Dynamic search ads have been retooled by Google.  There were a lot of changes here.
  • Google display network has had issues with having to create many different images in order to have your ads display properly.  Now you only need to create images for 3 different ad sizes:  728 x 90, 160 x 600, and 300 x 250.  The ads will auto-resize for 95% of the ads.
  • Automated bid enhancements for both estimation and reporting capabilities are now available.
  • Estimated conversions and cross device conversion capabilities in AdWords.
  • Data drive attribution, which will allow you to see the effect of having several keywords in your ads on conversion.  The current attribution models are:
    • Last Click
    • Time Decay
    • Linear
    • Position-Based
    • First Click
  • Importantly if you want to optimize for a specific model, Google is going to show you an estimation on how your ads would have performed under the various models to help you find the best model for your businesses advertising.
  • If you are a larger advertiser, they have some experimental data available to your campaigns.  To get this data, you will need to contact your Google representative and would need to be a larger advertiser.

Overall the improvements are very welcome.  Businesses have more opportunities than ever to reach customers through online venues such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google, Youtube and others.  All these choices will help push the platforms to offer us advertisers more options and better targeting.  In turn these improvements should enhance our ROI on advertising spend.

If you have any questions about the changes or would like to start your own online advertising, please contact me and we can discuss what would be the best options for your business needs.


Is WordPress Safe or Could Your Site Get Crushed?


WordPress 4.1Is WordPress safe is probably a question anyone is asking after the most recent attacks to websites in recent months.  If you manage your own site or keep up with security news you will have noticed quite a few patches happening with WordPress recently.

The latest WordPress 4.2.1 patch notes are listed here.

Here is some context around the issues being addressed from WordPress themselves.

“A few hours ago, the WordPress team was made aware of a cross-site scripting vulnerability, which could enable commenters to compromise a site. The vulnerability was discovered by Jouko Pynnönen.”  To read the full article just click this link.

I know security issues can seem overwhelming and some hosting companies use them as tools of fear to get you to buy into expensive services.  The reality is you should be backing up your databases and site with a regular cadence no matter what platform you are on.  You should also be ensuring you have all the updated patches as they come out.

The patches are meant to protect the website against those who have found vulnerabilities and would exploit them.  WordPress is the largest platform out there, so hackers target this platform heavily.

Is any site 100% hacker safe?  The simple answer is no.  There are hackers who can break into banks, the pentagon, etc…

We lock our car doors, knowing if a criminal really wants to get in your car they still can.  Your website is no different, we cannot guarantee a site will never get hacked but here are some simple things considered healthy preventative medicine for your site:

  • Keep your WordPress platform up to date.
  • Use only well known plugins and keep them up to date as well.
  • Make backups of your database and website on a routine basis.
  • Make sure your passwords are difficult to figure out.
  • Have hosting with a reputable hosting company

Do you work with someone who ensures your site is safe?  Some people like myself have plans that cover this for our customers.  You cannot guarantee it will happen, but you can ensure your downtime is limited and your files are safely backed up.


Seth Godin’s Freelancer Class Assignment


seth_godin_udemy_courseList of 10 Things You Deliver to Your Client: Assignment from Seth Godin’s Freelancer Course.  I was fortunate enough to have my question chosen by Seth for his most recent course.  One of my assignments is to put together a list of 10 things I deliver to my clients other than simple things such as being a good digital marketer.  I have my list from the class below.

  1. Respecting deadlines – I will not over promise or under deliver to a client
  2. Listening to the customer’s needs – I will listen first and respond only after you are done talking
  3. Delivering metrics for campaign performance – Metrics are very important for any effort
  4. Genuine caring about the customer’s success – I am not just a consultant, I am part of your team when you hire me
  5. Representing the customer’s brand as if it were my own. – Your success is my success
  6. Empathy for the customer’s needs and goals – I run a business as well and we all have things that keep us up at night
  7. A fail small mindset when it comes to testing campaigns – We should always be testing, but we should test small and look for areas to win big
  8. Learning your segment and understanding your client personas – A marketer needs to understand his or her market in order to communicate effectively
  9. The heart of a teacher – I will always explain what I am doing and show you as much as you want to know/learn
  10. Accountability for my results – The data will speak for itself and I am very transparent

The class is very interesting and enlightening so far.  I hope you enjoy me sharing my class assignment.