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Really liked the adults as children video, and the Barely Legal Pawn video. 


But my real favourite part of this post? "you have just 18 Fridays remaining until Christmas." :D:D:D:D:D:D

1 week ago on Gin and Topics: Things Children Do Adults Can’t Do

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We were just talking about how quickly the summer is going and it isn’t really fair because it arrived so late and, in fact, it’s not even 60 degrees today (that’s 15 degrees for you non-Americans).

Move to Toronto! It's been 25+ for weeks now! :P

2 months ago on Gin and Topics: Cute and Inspiring Overdrive

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You've pointed out the problem with a lot of self-reported studies: The framing of questions can greatly skew results.


In this case, they asked if "social media" influenced purchase decisions. Right away, people would respond no. Most people won't admit that any type of advertising or marketing affect what they buy, no matter how subtle the influence might be.


Framing questions correctly in any type of studies is key to collecting the right data. Gallup didn't do it right.

2 months, 1 week ago on Gallup Poll is Correct: Social Media DOES NOT Influence Purchases

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@ginidietrich @LSSocialEngage I know!!! Some people just like making things complicated, haha.

2 months, 3 weeks ago on Gin and Topics: Word Sneak and Baby Giggles

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#4 - hungover guys? I'm pretty sure they're still drunk!!!! :P


#3 - is not available in Canada :( boooo! Doesn't the internet have no borders?


#2 - Cute :)

#1 - This is probably the 10th time I've watched this, and I'm still laughing out loud! Thanks for taking my recommendation :)

2 months, 3 weeks ago on Gin and Topics: Word Sneak and Baby Giggles

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For example: The Big Smoke (obvious), The T. Dot (hipster tag), and Queen City (common among French Canadians).

I don't think there's supposed to be a "The" in "The T Dot"

3 months, 2 weeks ago on Toronto, Technology, the mesh Conference, and You!

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In the spirit of Gin and Topics, I decided to pour myself a Vesper Martini, and start watching your videos.


I watched the videos of the three dogs with the wieners.


Now my Vesper Martini is all over my screen...


Damn you Gini!!! :)

3 months, 2 weeks ago on Gin and Topics: Anti-Bullying and Dogs Who Play Fetch Alone

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My favourite was way #2 in the fail drunk test video. Man oh man, keeping balance while drinking is a haaaaaard thing to do!

3 months, 3 weeks ago on Gin and Topics: How to Fail a Drunk Test and a Genius Child

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OMG!!!! What the hell is going on with that woman? What is oozing out of her MOUTH!!!

Face. Palm.

4 months ago on Gin and Topics: Lip-Sync Battle and the Sprinkler Rainbow Conspiracy

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OMG! This is hilarious Sean!


Great, over-the-top, example of the importance of Personal Branding. I started working on my online brand during my last year at University, and have never stopped. It's really important, especially nowadays when clients, hiring managers, and prospects head to the mighty Google to look you up further!


Great story, great warning. Great post :)

5 months ago on Online Reputation Management and Adult Films

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I know her, I know her!!! :)


Great feature Gini! I'm a big fan of what ArCompany does, and I like all of their team - was able to meet a few of them, and I'm pretty good friends with @hessiejones now. 


Great that Amy finally got what she deserves, a great #FF feature on SpinSucks! :)

5 months, 4 weeks ago on #FollowFriday: Amy Tobin

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@CarlMyers Bwahaha, of course! My girlfriend acts exactly like his when I start playing air bass, and yell "Slappa da bass" in a leprechaun accent! :P

I don't know why she's still with me, honestly. haha :)

6 months ago on Gin and Topics: I Love Jesus, but I Like to Drink a Little

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@jasonkonopinski @ginidietrich  I wish both Gladys and Ellen were my friends. Imagine having a drink with them two in the same room :)

6 months ago on Gin and Topics: I Love Jesus, but I Like to Drink a Little

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@CarlMyers Lol, or just awkward :P Have you seen how he acts in I love you man? :)

6 months ago on Gin and Topics: I Love Jesus, but I Like to Drink a Little

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@ginidietrich @danielghebert  Thanks Gini! :D I'm just as awkward as him in real life.


I'll see you then, or see you at another time! :)

6 months ago on Gin and Topics: I Love Jesus, but I Like to Drink a Little

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"I love jesus, but I drink a little" is still one of the funniest things I've heard in my life. Gladys is awesome, Ellen too. I've watched that video so many times - especially on days when I feel down. It just picks me up!


Also, Paul Rudd is awesome - his comedy always seems so effortless. I've loved him since he was in Friends 10 years ago! Funny things about Paul - his role in "I love you man" is pretty much me, just 20 years older :)

6 months ago on Gin and Topics: I Love Jesus, but I Like to Drink a Little

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@Danny Brown @tamcdonald  That's a good point! I've written "lessons" posts before, one recently about what a garage sale taught me about marketing. There are valuable lessons (which I think is the consensus of most people here), but I'm with you - tragedies, deaths, disasters, etc., shouldn't be used for marketing lessons. It's a cheap attempt at newsjacking (ahem, buzzword...), and should be put to rest (but wouldn't that mean "newsjacking is dead?") :)

6 months, 1 week ago on Can We Say Goodbye to These Social Media Buzzwords in 2014?

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Great article Clay!

I'm still puzzled when people think long-form content doesn't work, or people won't read it. Let's think about this for a second - if long form content doesn't work, why do people read books? Why do people watch 2-hour long movies? Why do people spend days watching series on Netflix?


Content has always been part of the equation, ever since any type of entertainment has existed. But as you have pointed out, there are different things that can make long-form content great, or that can make it ineffective.


If you watched a 2-hour long movie that had a bad script, bad acting, and bad production value, would you be happy about it? No, you would probably say that it was a waste of time. But what if you watched a 2-hour long movie that made you laugh, cry, and gave you an amazing experience? Then you'd be sharing it with everyone you know!


The same goes for books, podcasts, articles, TV shows, etc. Length has never been an issue. If the story is good, the content is well produced, and it's easy to digest, then you don't have a problem. If the content is low quality, confusing, and doesn't add value, it won't be effective, regardless of the length.


When I write articles, I simply write until I'm done. Sometimes that's 700 words, and sometimes that's over 2000 words, with a bunch of images and graphics. Whatever it takes for me to complete the story is my guideline for length. Everything else you mentioned is a must, for every piece of content, regardless of word-count :)

6 months, 4 weeks ago on The Changing Face of Long-Form Content

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@AlaskaChickBlog :) Appreciate the comment! We'll be sharing more of our story later on!

7 months ago on Case Study–SteamFeed: Adapting Your Plan From Social Listening Data

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@dbvickery Your invitation to write for us is still open Brian! :) We don't have a lot of people writing about listening and analytics, so you'd be a great fit!

7 months ago on Case Study–SteamFeed: Adapting Your Plan From Social Listening Data

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@ginidietrich @danielghebert Pretty much exactly the same as the video... haha :P

7 months, 1 week ago on Gin and Topics: It’s Funny Because it’s True

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That third guy in the 1D video makes me laugh out loud each time!!!


That conference call video is painfully accurate. I shouldn't have watched it, because I'm about to hop on one in 15 minutes, and that's all I'll be thinking about!


7 months, 1 week ago on Gin and Topics: It’s Funny Because it’s True

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@hessiej @Daniel Hebert Thanks Hessie! I'm an analytics geek, so I always like to base my decisions on data, analysis, and logic. It's the way I'm wired, haha.


It's an important lesson for any company, of any size. SteamFeed was created on a very limited budget - we didn't have the funds or anything to invest in large data solutions. But that doesn't stop you these days from doing basic social listening. Setting up free alerts, reading trending articles, listening to social queues and keywords through engagement dashboard, etc. It's a very cost-effective way of listening to qualitative data on social, and just doing that can save you a lot of hardship in the future.

It doesn't have to be complicated or expensive to use data these days. Data doesn't have to be a luxury for large enterprises. It can be applied at any level.

7 months, 1 week ago on Case Study–SteamFeed: Adapting Your Plan From Social Listening Data

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@Danny Brown 100% Danny - a lot of people read the original article, that was completely vague and terrifying, and didn't return for the edits he made later on. I can see why people freaked out, and now a lot of us are writing articles about it to calm our clients and communities down.

7 months, 1 week ago on Guest Blogging: A Change in the Google Algorithm

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@EleanorPie @rishonan @DanielGHebert) Bwahaha, I would never consider myself an SEO smarty Eleanor, but thanks!


Here's my SEO strategy - create compelling, high quality content, and people will share it and link to it. That is all there is to SEO (besides a bit of formatting) :) If you're doing that right, you shouldn't have to worry about the rest.

7 months, 1 week ago on Guest Blogging: A Change in the Google Algorithm

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Great post Gini! I wrote my own version of it on InNetwork on Tuesday.


It's a very important topic to discuss as bloggers and marketers. What Cutts is really trying to say (which he has been saying for years now), is quality over quantity. Publish quality articles, and you'll be fine. What Cutts is referring to as "spammy" ar the quasi-advertorial-like posts that people are trying to pass as "guest posts." We get 20-50 requests like that each day at SteamFeed, which I'm sure you get at SpinSucks too.


There are other reasons to guest post besides SEO, all of them which existed before SEO was even a thing.


Like you, I was really worried, because both blogs I run have multiple featured authors, and accept guest posts. I almost panicked when I first read the post (Cutts changed the title of his post, and added some extra paragraphs for context after everyone freaked out).

Again, great post, and thanks for adding clarity to the issue :)

7 months, 1 week ago on Guest Blogging: A Change in the Google Algorithm

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@Ari Herzog @danielghebert completely agree with you Ari, and my bad for not reporting that, haha.


If I do look at my analytics, I can see that the quality of the traffic is higher - meaning time on site is much higher. My longer-from articles tend to have more comments as well.

My bad, and thanks for calling me out on it ;)

7 months, 1 week ago on Long-Form Content: It’s Time We Take it Seriously

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@Danny Brown I'm like you Danny, I will write until the post is done. Sometimes it's 800 words, sometimes it's 1700. It just tends to go towards the latter, because I have a lot to say, haha :P

@hessiej makes a good point though - you've been blogging for quite some time, have fans, have an email list, and have a reputation. For most companies, it's not the case, so they need to adapt content to what will reach the most targeted customers. A lot of people go to Google with buying intent, so if you're able to rank higher because you've developed a longer, more complete article, I would say go for it! :)

7 months, 1 week ago on Long-Form Content: It’s Time We Take it Seriously

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Great article Garrett, and it's somewhat confirmed what I've been seeing in my own experiences. The last post I wrote for SteamFeed was over 1500+ words (couldn't make it to the 2000 mark) and received over 1000 social shares, and quite a lot of page views. It's been attracting decent search engine traffic for some keywords, and ranks first page for some key phrases.


The last post I wrote for InNetwork (1600+ words) got quite a few shares over the last 24 hours, is our second highest performing post in traffic we've had in a 24 hours period, ranks on first page for some keyphrases.


I haven't tested it out fully yet, but from what I can see in our blog analytics, some of our longer-form articles seem to be performing the best in terms of social engagement, comments, links, SEO, and traffic. Which is contradictory to what many people say.


To me, this makes sense. Think about the format of a long-form article: Recent industry study/stats are presented, followed by a case-study of how these apply, followed by an analysis of the case study, followed by applications/takeaways for other people to apply, followed by considerations for the future/trends and how it could change.


This would typically be 4-5 blog posts for most people. But Google wants to serve the best answer to a search user's question. So why present 4 or 5 part answers, when they can present one complete answer? Isn't that the whole point of a search engine anyways, to present the best, most complete answer to users?


Like you, I will dig deeper into this, do my own experimentations, and start writing longer-form content to see how it performs.


Again, great article Garrett!

7 months, 1 week ago on Long-Form Content: It’s Time We Take it Seriously

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@jasonkonopinski That's a great idea! :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Gin and Topics: The Dance Edition

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@ginidietrich I can totally picture you saying to Lindsay "But, you realize that, you work for me... So I can take your sandwich if I want..." Bwahahaha :)


The husky one wins the internet this week - this is probably the 20th time I watched it. It's hilarious :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Gin and Topics: The Dance Edition

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@Howie Goldfarb @danielghebert @ginidietrich @jasonkonopinski @KateFinley @JRHalloran Bwahaha, I won't Howie :) I'm just a hard worker, that likes to see things happen - but I'm always there to help others.

7 months, 2 weeks ago on #FollowFriday: Howie Goldfarb

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The first time I met Howie, he told me it was a sad day. He said that I had reached my prime, before I was even 25, and compared me to the likes of J-Biebs and the Jonas Brothers. That is how I met Howie. ;)

I was very confused by his introduction. It took me the better half of the day to figure out that it was pure sarcasm (since sarcasm is hard to portray without emoticons or hashtags in written text). But once I realized, I thought "this is my type of guy." (At least I think it was sarcasm, still not 100% sure! :) )


Since then, I've known him through comments on SpinSucks. He's an awesome fellah, and once you realize that he's joking 95% of the time, he's actually pretty funny. He tells it how it is, which makes me think he's a trustworthy person. And he's very social - it doesn't matter who writes the post, who the post is about, or whatever - he'll inject himself in the conversation, and make you feel at home on the SpinSucks blog.


Howie is a great guy, and happy to see him featured here Gini! :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on #FollowFriday: Howie Goldfarb

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@Howie Goldfarb  Lol, no? :P

In this case Howie, the campaign did work. There was a perception that HP computers were lower quality, and weren't very innovative, because they were focusing too much on other solutions, and going away from their core. People still use computers, and not everyone has a Mac - they invited influencers from all sorts of different countries. Apple products aren't the most adopted in the international market ;)

The point was to change the perception of what HP could do on a global scale.


"A commitment to desktops/laptops shows you are a dinosaur not a visionary."


I don't believe that's true. Every single office in the world has desktops and laptops. Households have desktops and laptops. There is a clear, global market for desktops and laptops, and somebody has to do it well :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@Howie Goldfarb I would say so as well Howie - long-term relationships are the goal, and you can rely on the trust you built within those relationships, when needed.

When you're an agency though, and a new client comes in with a niche topic, you don't always have time to build the relationships organically. In this case, a paid campaign would make sense - but it's a start to a relationship. Choose people that you want to work with again, and that you trust, and start building long-term relationships with them after the campaign.


Great comment :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@belllindsay @Danny Brown LOL! I needed to cause trouble Lindsay ;)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@jasonkonopinski For sure Jason! Even though you might be reaching num-nums target market through your audience, if there isn't any context to why you should be selected on their list, the campaign won't make sense.

You don't see a lot of "campaigns" when it comes to b2b, because they're usually pretty small scale, or part of a much larger, on-going strategy. The best I've ever seen for b2b was Radian6 (when they were still called Radian6, before the Salesforce takeover).


They had a clear influence marketing strategy, with dedicated influence relationship managers on their team. They invited the most popular social media speakers to their conferences, they sent out "thank you" gifts to people that would write about them, they integrated influencers within their own content strategy and blog. Influencers were completely integrated within every part of their online and offline marketing strategies.


That has changed over the last 2 years, but before then, oh my! They were an inspiration when it came to community, content, and influence :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@HughAnderson Great comment Hugh, and I completely agree!


No matter what type of marketing or communication you do, you need to set goals, and measure them. Love that acronym too - was pushed a lot by one of my marketing profs in University :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@ginidietrich  "I think the important thing here to note is influencer relations, alone, will not drive real revenue."

That almost sounds like the title to one of your recent articles ;)

I agree with you - you can't simply do influencer relations, it needs to fit into your communications plan in order to get results. A lot of companies don't understand this, because they're not educated about HOW it can integrate into their existing strategies. They see the stats on blogger outreach, know that bloggers can be influential, so they pitch them willy-nilly without even knowing what they want to accomplish, how it will affect their own marketing, etc.


There's a lot of research and planning required in order to execute a strategic and effective influence marketing campaign :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@dbvickery Thanks Brian! We should have another chat sometime :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@LauraPetrolino LOL!!! I tend to organize most of my posts with headings and such - makes it easier to read, especially for the "skimmers." :)

I think there's a lack of content (yeah, I said that) on the web about "ways to work with influencers", and "measuring influence marketing campaigns." A lot of the content is about "this is how you engage them" or "this is why you should work with them," which is great content to read, but misses the fundamentals. What are your influence marketing goals? How will you measure them? What will success look like to you or your clients?

We need more of that if we want this industry to move forward, and to get more marketers to start thinking about influence marketing as strategic communications to reach business goals.

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@belllindsay Great comment Lindsay!

"Personally, when I read a review or otherwise, where a blogger/influencer indicates they have been paid and/or otherwise compensated for the story, my bulls**t meter pings. Is that because I have a background working in the media?"

I would say, you're probably right on this one. The conversation of whether bloggers/influencers should or shouldn't get paid is a big one to have - one that I have with prospects almost on a daily basis.

But if you go outside of the "social media niche," there isn't any problem with this. The reason why so many of us have a problem with it is because we've been exposed to the "issues" of getting compensated to write. The majority of people haven't. And the conversation is starting to shift. 


We worked with a PR agency last year that was 100% against compensating bloggers. Over the few months we worked with them, they quickly realized that there was a shift in the bloggersphere, and if they wanted to work with bloggers that had the right reach, quality, and integrity, they needed to offer some sort of compensation. When a blogger receives 50 pitches a day from new products and brands, they'll work with the ones that are most lucrative to them, and that's something us, as marketers, need to realize.

We also have to remember that bloggers/influencers aren't the same as reporters/journalists for one important reason: Bloggers play both the role of reporter AND publisher - and publishers need to make money in order to survive. It cost money to operate a blog - domains, hosting, design, editing, promotion, tools, etc. Most bloggers don't get enough traffic to make money off of advertising, so they're coming up with creative ways of getting compensated, while still offering some value to their readers - this usually comes in the form of sponsored posts, native advertising, and giveaways.

"
the very matter of cash changing hands - whether through real money, or a swishy trip, completely changes the objectivity of a story."

I will use @Danny Brown as an example for this one. Danny wrote a review about us last summer. He introduced our software to his community, in exchange for a software license. In his review, he pointed out the things he didn't like about us, and the features that were missing in order to make it a great product. He didn't let the fact that we gave him a license affect HIS integrity. So on this, I disagree with you ;) It can be done, professionally and with integrity, as long as there's transparency in the story. But that comes from the blogger/influencer's side.

I have to say though, after all of this, I do agree that there are some bloggers out there that can't do an objective review when they get compensated - I've seen that end of the spectrum plenty of times as well. They're usually a bit more amateurish, and they only care about themselves, and not their readers. I've seen some bloggers only post positive sponsored reviews, over and over again. These are the bloggers you want to stay away from as a brand - they tend not to have much influence on their audience anyways.

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@JoeCardillo @belllindsay Great comment Joe!

I agree - without the proper planning (asking yourself and your clients the right questions) and the right approach, you can run around circles and just create an echo chamber. I've seen it happen with a lot of people, where they pitch a campaign to 100 random bloggers, the bloggers jump at the chance to get paid, and nothing really comes out of it.


Strategic interactions can, and will help. For example, I run a blog called SteamFeed. In a year, we grew the blog to over 70,000 unique visitors a month, all through strategic interactions with influencers. We have a lot of the RIGHT people writing for us, and a lot of the right people sharing our content. It allowed us to grow our startup, and develop some great, long-term relationships with marketing thought-leaders in the process.


If done right, influence marketing can be very beneficial for a brand. But a lot of people don't do it right ;)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@ClayMorgan Thanks Clay! I'm actually working on an eBook for 15-20 (haven't decided yet) ways you can use influence marketing. You're right - everyone says you have to work with influencers, but never gives examples of HOW :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@JRHalloran Great comment JR! I agree - the quality and authority of the site in question definitely matters, but don't underestimate the small guys either. You never know when an article will end up going viral - smaller influencers with smaller networks still have a lot of influence over their audience. Word of mouth can spark at any time.

That's why I mentioned to measure the amount of positive/negative press, but also run a sentiment analysis on social mentions as well to see how the conversation is going. You can track mentions of press releases and conversations from small and large websites this way.

Negative press is never fun, especially when it reaches a lot of people :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@belllindsay Great comment Lindsay! I've seen this done a lot with bloggers/influencers. Mark Schaffer recently wrote about his experience with Dell in a similar fashion.

I can see some issues when it comes to journalists accepting these kinds of press trips, as it could bias their opinions instead of sharing objective facts. But at the same time, these "summits" can make for a good story.

On the blogger/influencer side, I don't really see a problem. Bloggers create their communities in whatever way they want, and some of them accept cash, products, or trips as compensation for stories. If done right, the brand would never dictate the message. They'll just present everything to the bloggers, answer any questions, and it's the blogger's job to create and tell a story to their audience. Good bloggers will make it interesting and transparent, no matter if they get paid/compensated or not.

Readers want to be entertained, want to be educated, and want a good story. If a trip to a brand summit offers exclusive previews at the latest technology and offers a good story, my question would be, why not? Isn't that the blogger's "job?" To entertain? To educate? To tell their amazing story? :) What do you think?

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@PatrickHayslett It's so important in the qualifying process of our clients. If they don't have the budget or staff resources to put the effort into influence marketing campaigns, it's simply not a great fit for them. It either takes a lot of time to build relationships with influencers, or money - sometimes both! :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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@Danny Brown Exactly! A lot of the conversations we have with clients and prospects start with the questions I proposed at the start of the post. If you don't know the answers to these questions, don't even think about influence tactics! You need to go back to basics, and figure out your marketing plan/strategies before going.

Much of the time, your budget, your goals (reach, conversions, engagement, etc.), and the content of your influence marketing campaign will guide your influencer selection. Pair that, with data, and you'll have a much better chance of succeeding! :)

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Influencer Outreach: Achieve Communications Goals

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Great post! I wrote a bit about this in a new year's post as well.

Here's why SEO isn't dead - when people have questions they need answered, they head to Google. That's why SEO isn't dead. That's why written content isn't dead. And that's why long-form content is still important (unlike everyone that says short form content will be key this year).

As long as search engines exist, and people still use them, there will be some form of SEO. The way SEO works has changed, as you pointed out. Semantic search is much more important, with individual keywords losing some importance. Another thing to consider is how people conduct search through voice recognition, like Siri. The patterns of natural language that are used in voice will have great affect on SEO in the near future, I'm sure.


Daniel Hebert

Marketing Lead,

InNetwork Inc.

7 months, 3 weeks ago on SEO is Not Dead

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