July 22, 2014

PPC Potpourri

Just a couple of tidbits this morning:

The AdWords team has decided to jump on the Twitter bandwagon, so to keep up with “the latest industry trends and information, Google insights and news & relevant product information and updates” just follow these Twitter accounts:

Also, I would like to give a big thanks to Bridgette over at Google. My impression is that Google is making a more concerted effort to assist agencies and since that gives me more support, I’m all for it. Quite frankly the move seems a little overdue considering that agencies have multiple clients and efforts directed at an agency are effectively multiplied…but I’m not complaining.

Lastly, Google held an excellent webinar yesterday on Website Optimizer yesterday. The recorded version isn’t up yet, but if you’ve ever wanted to try the service I recommend watching this webinar. It goes through every step of the process at a level that even a relative noob can understand. Have a great weekend everyone.

PS I’m looking for a guest post in October. Hit me up if you would be willing, robert (at) righteousmarketing dot com.

Top PPC Mistakes (via Twitter)

After reading the most recent State of the Twittersphere report I realized that I’m kind of a big deal (compared to the average Twitter user). Therefore, I asked my awesome followers to share their wisdom and asked “What is the #1 AdWords mistake made by small businesses?”

My contribution to the list would be the following:

Not testing on a consistent basis

Thank you to these guys for helping me out and if you take these points to heart you’ll avoid a lot of mistakes. Anything we missed?

Twitter Tirade: Artificially Pumping Your Follower Count

If you haven’t heard Twitter is really popular these days. So popular in fact that we now see accounts with over 1 million followers (congrats to @aplusk for winning the battle). So popular that even Oprah, goddess of soccer moms, mommy bloggers and mompreneurs, featured the service on her show and tweeted her first tweet live on the show (reminds me of The Truman Show when they show Truman’s first steps, first kiss, etc. live on TV).

The Popularity Contest That Is Now Twitter

Just like any real-life social scene there will always be the annoying boys & girls who feel it their life mission to be “popular”. In Twitter this means getting as many followers as possible. Somehow they derive satisfaction from knowing that thousands of people are aware of who their favorite character is on The Hills or how much they hate going to work on Mondays.

To these people I say “Quit following me!” Your tweets are worthless to an exponential degree. We have no common interests. I don’t want to learn how to make money in my pajamas working from home. I don’t want to join your MLM company. And I know that in 3 days you’ll unfollow me because I had the audacity to not follow you back. The nerve!

Who I Do Want To Follow

As I’ve gotten more and more followers I have become more selective in who I follow. I want relationships and engagement. If I met you in person I would want to know at least one thing about you (that isn’t common knowledge) so we could have a conversation. Common hobbies, work interests or a random funny link. Something! Also, I love following people who @ me. I appreciate the fact they went out of their way to initiate a conversation so there is a surefire way to get me to follow you (but make it good).

Don’t misunderstand, I love my 800+ followers. I try every day to tweet something interesting and valuable. I know it won’t be interesting or valuable to everyone, but I guarantee it will be interesting and valuable to someone. So if you find me interesting I would love to have you follow me. If I find you interesting I will be happy to follow you too.

Bad Economy? Help People Out

Everyone is being inundated with “news” about the bad economy. In some ways this is good. I see a lot more people biking to work and around town as well as more people using public parks for recreation (myself included). That’s great news. However, I also sense a lot of fear, especially amongst my friends who are just starting their careers.

My Friend

Last night I was chatting with a friend on Facebook. Pretty typical stuff about work, life, etc. When we were talking about her job she mentioned that she was looking for a better job but felt like she couldn’t find much out there. I could have offered a few consoling words and left it at that, but instead I thought “Hmmm. What can I do to help?”

My Network

I don’t mean to brag, but I realize that with just over 850 followers on Twitter I have more than the average bear. Amongst those is a cool guy who I know works in PR. I send over a DM and ask him if he knows about anyone looking for an ambitious, young PR person. (Keep in mind that the discussion with my friend and the Twitter DMs are happening simultaneously.) A couple minutes later I get a DM back asking for her resume that he can send along to a couple people. I hit my friend on Facebook chat and she emails me her resume. I forward it along and within just a few minutes her resume is in the hands of a well-connected PR guy who’s looking to pass it around to see if there’s any interest.

Okay, this story doesn’t have a happy ending yet and in no way do I want anyone to feel I’m showing off. This experience just reinforced a very simple principle I’ve been thinking about lately. The quickest way for us to get out of this recession is if we help each other out. Everyone has skills and connections, we just need to use them more often to help others. It can be as simple as getting a resume to new contacts or as complicated as setting up a non-profit. So what are you doing to help people out?

Twitter Tirade: Abusing #FollowFriday

Anyone who has been on Twitter longer than 7 days has come across the #followfriday hashtag. Initially one may think it’s a misspelling. Perhaps some sort of technology problem caused by Twitter (cough, fail whale, cough). However, soon enough each Twitterer will learn that #followfriday is how you recommend someone you follow to all of your followers. The Twitter equivalent of introducing your friend when they arrive at a party. Though clumsily implemented, the concept is brilliant.

How Did It Go Wrong?

I now cringe while booting up my TweetDeck each Friday knowing that I will be deluged for the next few hours by a constant stream of worthless #followfriday recommendations. You know what I’m talking about. 140 characters worth of @RandomNewFollower @MyBuddy @ClientTwitterAccount @Girlfriend/BoyfriendWhoSucksAtTwitter followed by/preceded by #followfriday with the hope of pumping up the follower count of the aforementioned Tweeple.

But what is wrong with that you say? These are my friends/clients/followers and I really do think you should follow them.

Okay.

Great.

But why? Why should I follow these people? I know you only have 140 characters, but throw me a bone here. Tell me that @RandomNewFollower is an awesome mountain biker. Tell me that @MyBuddy is the best Guitar Hero drummer you have ever seen. Tell me that @GirlfriendWhoSucksAtTwitter is really into sewing. That way I know that I want to follow @RandomNewFollower because we share an interest in mountain biking and I don’t want to follow @MyBuddy or @GirlfriendWhoSucksAtTwitter. I’m sorry if it hurts your feelings or hurts their feelings when I don’t follow them. Get over it.

How To Fix It

All I ask is for you to put a little thought into your #followfriday tweet and tell me why I should follow the Twitterer you’re recommending. Allow me to demonstrate – “@BuyPlumbing to get great deals on faucets, toilets, sinks & tubs. #followfriday”. See, pretty easy. Not to mention that the followers your friends get will already have a starting point for their conversation. Now go, and sin no more!

Successful Twitter Promotion

ObertoAlpha Package

A few weeks ago one of my Twitter friends told me to follow @ObertoAlpha. No reason was given except the promise that I “wouldn’t be disappointed.” My curiosity was piqued so I threw a follow to @ObertoAlpha despite the fact that the account had only 50 followers and was a new account.

Hook A Twitta’ Up

Before I know it I get a DM from these guys congratulating me on being one of their 50 first followers and to send them my address for some free jerky. Hey, I love jerky and I love free, so I responded right away. My expectation was to get a little 1 or 2 ounce package, snarf it down and be happy. However, @ObertoAlpha doesn’t roll that way. They believe it’s “Go big or go home.” They live like an Alpha and this is what they actually sent.



The butcher paper packaging gave the feeling that you were about to grill up two fresh steaks from the local butcher and it wasn’t far from the truth.



Inside there were five 3.5 ounce packages of Oberto beef jerky in four different flavors, two coasters and a note explaining what it means to “Eat Like An Alpha”.

From Follower To Rabid Fan

This promotion was successful for many reasons. First, I’m writing this post! They could have made me jump through hoops or do a little dance to get free jerky, but they didn’t (though I would have done it). They gave it away and built the relationship. Second, they have an entire mini-site built around the “Eat Like An Alpha” concept. Lastly, they have continued to engage me with the same voice ever since. The messaging is always very alpha-like and I hit them back with very alpha-like replies.

If you’re sick of hearing about @ComcastCares and @DellOutlet as the models of successful business Twittering, give @ObertoAlpha a look because they were the ones who turned a follower into a fanatic.

Building Advocates on Twitter (Twivocates?)

oberto1

For good or bad companies are flocking to Twitter. Some companies merely want to protect their brand from impersonators. Other companies have no idea what they’re doing and run around like chickens with their heads cut off. However, some companies “get” Twitter.

Customer Service

The most successful corporate forays on Twitter have been centered on customer service. Even reading the title I would guess that most of you already thought about @comcastcares, the effort by Comcast to repair their reputation for having horrible customer service (I have my own fair share of Comcast horror stories I won’t mention here). I won’t call their customer service line again because Twitter will get me a faster response and quicker resolution. That’s making Twitter advocates with customer service.

Exclusive Deals

You know I’m going to mention @DellOutlet. These guys took Twitter to another level by showing that you can make Twitter advocates while making cold, hard cash. The key element here is exclusivity. DellOutlet has over 150K followers because they offer something you can’t get anywhere else. They don’t regurgitate sale prices and promotions from their website, they offer exclusives. Give your followers something exclusive and you’ll create Twitter advocates.

Swag

Let me be clear, there is bad swag and good swag. Swag is bad when it doesn’t build the brand. In my opinion this includes t-shirts, hats, pens, etc. Good swag turns someone with little interest into the company into an advocate. For illustration I’ll share my experience with @ObertoAlpha.

First off, I found out about ObertoAlpha from another follower who told me they sent him a sample of jerky. I like jerky so I thought it would be cool to score a freebie. I figured a little 1 ounce bag or something. I DMed my address and forgot about it.

Oh boy were my expectations wrong. The jerky was mailed in a white butcher paper and looked big enough to be a whole roast.

After opening the package I discovered, much to my glee, 5 bags of jerky representing all of Oberto’s flavors.

I’ve been snacking on jerky for days now. On the ski hill, at my work desk, and at home. I tell everyone about how cool Oberto is for hooking me up and I laud them for being on Twitter (which I usually have to explain to people). My next bag of jerky will be Oberto Original or nothing at all because I am thoroughly converted. They even have a website, EatLikeAnAlpha.com, tied to their Twitter efforts. This is swag done right because it spawned an advocate.

How Will You Build Advocates?

To those businesses out there considering if Twitter will work for them, ask yourself this question: How will we gain advocates? Once you have an answer, jump in and make sure to tell me, @robert_brady.

Google+