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12 Short Link Branding Bliss for All

Link shortening, the act of turning a long URL into something more like 10-13 characters, has become an important online activity. So much so that tools have cropped up just to provide this service.

link shorten with bit.ly pro

Image caitra via flickr

For example the URL for this specific post is https://www.ducttapemarketing.com/blog/2011/01/10/link-shortening-for-branding/, but a shortened version that would direct people to the post could be this http://ducttape.me/shorter1

Tools such as bit.ly, ow.ly and even Google’s goo.gl convert links to tidy a version, and perhaps equally as important, provide link analytics that can teach you a great deal about the traffic to clicking of a certain link.

Sharing links to content, both your own and that which you find useful, has become a very important tactic and Twitter’s 140 character limit certainly made shorter links necessary.

As this tactic of aggregating, filtering and curating content grows, brands have started to look for ways to provide shortened links as a standard branding practice. You’ll find links throughout social media to Pepsi as pep.si and C-Span as cs.pn. Amazon links on Twitter automatically shorten to an amzn.to link.

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20 Social Media Makes Email Even Stronger

Marketing podcast with Gail Goodman (Click to play or right click and “Save As” to download – Subscribe now via iTunes

nutshellThis week’s guest on the Duct Tape Marketing podcast is Gail Goodman, Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer of leading email marketing service provider Constant Contact.

Over the last year or two email marketing has taken a back seat to social media in terms of buzz. However, during the recession, firms that had a solid relationship with an audience via email held a much stronger position. Email marketing still produces the highest ROI of any online marketing tactic.

Commercial e-mail returned a whopping $43.62 for every dollar spent on it in 2009, according to the DMA’s just-released Power of Direct economic-impact study—an effort the trade organization publishes every year at its annual fall conference.

A funny thing happened on the way to increased social media usage too. Instead of spelling the end to email, it actually caused an increase in the inbox. A great deal of social media activity still revolves around the email inbox.

I frequently field questions from audiences about whether social media has replaced email and I think the answer is that social media and email play very well together and, in fact, email has only become more important. Social media makes email even stronger and, when used correctly, email can make your social media efforts even stronger.

To that end, email service providers are looking for ways to help customers more fully integrate their social media usage with email marketing. Constant contact has added event marketing with plenty of social features and recently purchased Nutshell Mail a tool that brings a summary of your social network updates to your inbox in a single email on your schedule.

I spent some time recently with ExactTarget, an enterprise email service provider. ExactTarget’s purchase of CoTweet, a social media monitoring and management tool is further sign of the growing integration of email and social.

This trend will continue so while I’m a big fan of growing your friends and followers, get that email subscriber list built for the long term.

42 How to Make Your Tweets More Useful

supr

One of the major push backs I get surrounding twitter use for business involves the idea of ROI. It’s a genuine concern and something that can feel very hard to measure for most businesses. It’s rare when someone can effectively attract followers and blatantly sell something to that at the same time. In most social media settings it just doesn’t work that way. The objective is to simply create enough engagement that people want to find out more on their own. While that’s a great long term objective, it can be a little hard to track.

One of the approaches I preach is to think about you tweeting activities, and subsequent payoffs, in an expanded way. Sure, you want to get more business, but I find that getting better ideas, testing messages and doing all manner of research with my tweets provides tangible ROI for my business as well. A large percentage of my tweets are positioned to intentionally test ideas and trends for use in other ways. I’m still providing engaging information, but in a strategic way – that’s how you need to think about your activity in any social media setting to get immediate and long term ROI.

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