B2B Marketing News

B2B Marketing Predictions for 2016

January 22, 2016 by

B2B Marketing Predictions for 2016

Is this the year of comebacks or new innovation? According to some of the top B2B marketers, there are 3 marketing strategies marketers are including in their annual plans.

1. Personalization

As the number of marketing tools continues to grow and data becomes more accessible, personalization will be critical to getting customers’ attention in 2016. Last year, persona- targeted messages proved to be successful and will continue to be a key component in the marketing plans of savvy B2B marketers.

2. Disruptive Marketing Tools

Unfortunately, getting your brand’s message out above the noise will be just as tough as ever. To combat the noise, marketers are planning to use disruptive marketing tactics to capture attention. But rather than invest in new and unfamiliar tools, B2B marketers will be pulling a few items from the old playbook and looking to trusted tools that generate results.

3. Brand Engagement and Sharing

B2B brands must engage their audience—by focusing on emotion, not promotion. While the best channels for engagement vary across industries, brand engagement remains a critical step in the sales process. But it doesn’t stop there–smart marketers empower their audiences to share the message.

A big thanks to everyone who participated and shared their insights! Click each headshot below to check out individual responses we received from these forward-thinking B2B marketers (in alphabetical order by first name).

Here’s a quick look at our experts as they share one tip B2B marketers are sharing as we move into another exciting new year!

What one tip do B2B marketers want to share as we move into another exciting new year?

Chris_Gowen_Xerox

Chris Gowen, Regional Vice President – Sales and Marketing, Xerox Mortgage Services

 2016 should be an exciting year, with a presidential election, a recovering economy (hopefully), and a greater influx of millennials into the workplace.  Marketing in 2016 should focus on excitement and change.  Fresh ideas in new formats should be delivered using traditional and social media.  Name recognition is paramount; have your company and product names exposed as much as possible in a positive light. 

Denise-Doyle-SageDenise Doyle, Senior Marketing Manager, Sage

@DeniseGDoyle

Regardless of the expanded technology options and channels available to marketers to reach buyers, nothing is still as powerful as relevance. If you don’t understand how to connect what your buyer values most to what you offer in a way that resonates with them, no creative marketing campaign or cool technology can overcome that. You’re still just white noise.

Ellie-Soleymani-Mobile-LabsEllie Soleymani, Director of Marketing, Mobile Labs

@mobilelabsinc

Today’s business-to-business (B2B) buyers are increasingly adopting digital throughout every stage of the customer journey, expecting and engaging with an informative experience across touchpoints. With this in mind, it is important for B2B marketers to define and implement a digital strategy. Unfortunately, a lot of organizations still focus heavily on traditional marketing tactics and do not see the value in setting up a digital strategy. However, having a digital strategy is part of delivering a seamless omnichannel experience to your buyers. It can improve brand awareness through the use of a variety of platforms to reach as many target prospects are possible; (think e-mail marketing, search engine optimization and social media).

To implement a successful digital marketing strategy start by aligning your digital goals with your overall marketing strategy goals. Your digital strategy should help improve and achieve your overall marketing goals. Then perform marketing research to use the appropriate digital platform(s). Once you have the appropriate tool(s) in place, develop a marketing strategy calendar and consider the advantages offered by the different digital channels to select the most effective one to fulfill your goals. Last but not least, establish a method to evaluate and measure the effectiveness of your digital marketing strategies regularly and make changes accordingly. And keep in mind, “it’s ok” if a tactic does not yield the expected results. Often time, we learn by “trial and error” and end up with the right method after a few adjustments.

Erika-Jolly-Bookes-SpringbotErika Jolly Brookes, CMO, Springbot

@ebrookes

Video and video ads are becoming more and more acceptable end user experiences on mobile, and is a meaningful reach medium for B2B marketers.  Figuring out a mechanism to translate your value proposition (i.e. avoid business speak) across consumer mediums in a cost effective manner as well as leveraging the increased ability to embed video in search (not just text-based advertising) are stand-out opportunities in 2016.

John-Hansen-RecallJohn Hansen, Senior Manager, Marketing and Communications, Recall Americas

@recallholdings

Don’t be afraid of allowing Employee Advocacy to occur in your business.  Employees have long wanted to speak up about the benefits and solutions their organizations provide through social media, however many organizations are reluctant to let go of control in fear of what, or how, the employees will alter the marketing message.

At Recall, a global provider of records and information management, we were concerned that employees would communicate practices and policies that were inconsistent with our brand message.  In a highly regulated industry, we did not want employees to give their own interpretations of content, particularly thought leadership pieces.  This presented a real dilemma, as the company was looking for ways to increase brand awareness and improve SEO on the website.  How could we syndicate and amplify our content and not involve our employees?

In late 2015, we began piloting a new social media automation tool that provided a centrally managed platform for content, where our employees were allowed access to share in a consistent, controllable environment.  Prior to access, the employee was required to attend training on the new system and undertake a certification test of Recall’s Social Media Handbook.  Once approved, the employees were able to share available content, and receive alerts when new content was available.  Recall conducted several showcase events to promote new content and received impression volumes that equated into increased website traffic.  There is a gamification element to the social sharing platform that makes it fun as well, with monthly challenges and contests.

The employees are happy, our website SEO has increased, and our content is being amplified to new contacts daily.

justin-rubner-NCRsmallbizJustin Rubner, Content & Promotions Manager, NCR Small Business, NCR Silver

@justinrubner

Just because it’s B2B, that doesn’t mean it has to be boring or complicated. Too much B2B marketing is littered with corporate speak and jargon. The people we’re selling to are still people, and they want to hear human-centric stories. Being told an interesting story with real benefits is far more palpable than buzzwords and dry marketing.  It’s also more difficult. But if you build a culture that puts in that extra effort toward explaining things in simple terms, in a creative way, it will pay off in the end.

Kait-Vinson-HighJumpKait Vinson, Director of Corporate Marketing, HighJump

@TheRealKait

Always put yourself in your buyers’ shoes and think about how you think your potential customer would like their buying process.  If your first instinct is to Google something, then make sure you’re findable there.  If you see posts or ads on Facebook and that influences your decisions, then be present there.  Never underestimate the fluidity of buying experiences.

Kelly-Neumeier-CBKKelly Neumeier, Strategic Intelligence Director, Cherry Bekaert

@CherryBekaert

In 2016, B2B marketers should not only focus on high quality content to drive thought leadership, but also have a strategy around that content. Customers today are more savvy and discerning about what they pay attention to, so you need to make sure you are getting their attention by educating them and addressing their needs. Keep in mind your strategy should align with your buyer personas and pain points and as well as with each channel and device to reach the prospect at the right time and engage them throughout the buying process.

Kevin-Hegebarth-HireIQKevin Hegebarth, VP, Marketing, HireIQ

@kghegebarth

I expect that getting your message across to the right buyers and influencers, at the right time, in order to spur them to action will become harder in 2016. The “signal to noise” ratio has been declining for years and getting your voice heard over the din of your direct competitors as well as those who also seek a share of your customers’ wallets will be more challenging.

It used to be enough just to map messages to buyer personas and you could do a pretty decent job. Now you need to layer the unique characteristics of each generation in your buyer pool and each media type as well. If you’re selling to CFOs, is your target a Millennial or a Boomer? Well, there’s a CFO message you have to craft, adjust it for each generation, and deliver it to them in their preferred medium. Who or what channel do your buyers trust to get their information? It’s enough to drive a modern B2B marketer mad!

Lee-Nagel-IzendaLee W. Nagel, VP of Marketing, Izenda

@Izenda

To more effectively engage prospects, deep knowledge of their company and key contacts is essential.  SalesLoft has been an invaluable part of performing the necessary research for Izenda to reach individuals with persona targeted messages.

Malinda-Wilkinson-SalesfusionMalinda Wilkinson, CMO, Salesfusion

@MalindaWilk

Slow down and take the time you need to properly evaluate marketing and sales processes before implementing new tools like marketing automation. CMOs are under an enormous amount of pressure to continuously deliver tangible results in real-time, but without properly vetting existing processes they’ll never understand what’s broken. Automating ineffective tactics just expedites poor results.

Michael-Brenner-Marketing-InsidersMichael Brenner, CEO of Marketing Insider Group, and co-author of The Content Formula

@BrennerMichael

Businesses don’t buy things, people do. Emotional messages outperform promotional ones by 2 to 1. For 2016, I predict a massive correction in advertising budgets because we will start doing more marketing that works by reaching people in a helpful and emotional way. There will be a huge increase in spend and focus on content marketing. This will require us to get pretty darn good at showing Content Marketing ROI. We’ll also see more personalization, visual content and brand-produced entertaining content. Is 2016 the year of more B2B brands finding a personality and sense of humor?

Mike-headshot-560x620Mike Neumeier, APR Principal and Co-founder, Arketi Group

@Arketi

It’s only logical that public relations and search should work hand in hand. By treating the two as interdependent tools in your marketing toolkit — like a drill and a drill bit — you’ll realize amplified results in both public relations and search marketing. Smart PR professionals will ensure — just as we did with social media — that search marketing is firmly rooted in the PR discipline.

Rob-Amberg-JabianRobert Amberg, Director of Marketing, Jabian Consulting

@robamberg

I think the biggest thing I see is marketers no longer taking chances outside of digital.  Everyone wants to experiment with the latest crowdsourced, account-based, social media platform, but no one is taking chances when it comes to traditional marketing channels.  “New” might end up being better, but it doesn’t make ‘traditional’ irrelevant.  A simple example of this is with email vs. traditional direct mail.  How much farther does a simple handwritten note go, than a quickly blasted email.  Email is pervasive.  It’s everywhere and everyone gets too much of it.  It used to be that way with ‘junk mail’ but with the decline of physical mail delivery, suddenly a piece of mail delivered to your desk or home breaks through the clutter.  Email is easy and safe.  Traditional mail is riskier for a variety of reasons, but could have better results.  My advice? Take chances with traditional methods and keep it simple.  There’s plenty of time for the next super widget.

Serena-Ehrlich-Business-WireSerena Ehrlich, Director, Social and Evolving Media, Business Wire

@Serena

2016 is going to be the year of news visibility. There is a record number of content pieces being created by consumers and companies alike. Smart PR pros know they must create more personalized news and brand content in 2016 – pieces customized to engage highly targeted audience, but they also need to know when they must add budget behind the content to increase visibility, impact and ultimately, ROI.  To help communicators determine when to use an amplification tool like newswires or native advertising to drive higher activity and results, Business Wire created this handy Q&A guide:

http://blog.businesswire.com/2015/09/10/how-should-i-promote-my-content-an-infographic-for-smart-marketers/

This graphic asks a series of questions that will help you determine which content pieces should be amplified and provides tips on how to do it.

Sharon-Poulos-TravelportSharon Poulos, Director of Marketing, Travelport

@Atlantaspartan

Despite all of the cool tools that we have enlisted throughout the last few years, none of them matter if you don’t have your CRM in order!  I know it sounds simple, but as we try to be creative and do targeted campaigns by either personas or products, we get stumped because our CRM isn’t flexible enough to tag and allow those designations to be made OR the sales teams are not consistently using the data.  This causes us to struggle with segmentation, lead generation and getting away from a “one size fits all” marketing approach.

For a time management perspective, we have adopted a tool called LeanKit (www.Leankit.com) which is a Kanban methodology in which you can create boards with cards in a web-enabled environment which allows you to manage work flow, WIP, bottlenecks, and more.  It has taken about a year to implement and refine, but using agile marketing philosophy, this will continue to be refined.  Finally, other tools that we have adopted include www.strategyzer.com which gives you value proposition canvas and business model canvas capabilities.

Stacey-Holleran-ControlScanStacey Holleran, Sr. Manager, Corporate Communications, ControlScan

@mktb2b

Businesses are comprised of individual consumers, so it’s important that marketing communications appeal to basic human values such as trust and belonging. Moving into 2016, thought-leadership style communications will play a bigger role as decision makers look for products and services to which they can feel connected and place their trust.

Traci-Curran-BastilleTraci Curran, Director of Marketing, Bastille

@BiggerFunnel

Stop ignoring disruptive marketing. As digital marketing continues to take over, buyers are overwhelmed by messages. While 2015 showed great improvements in personalization and targeting, it also illustrated that simply using a name in an email or mentioning a shared connection is not enough to get real audience engagement. Successful marketing needs to stand out. Marketers should consider testing guerrilla marketing campaigns (remember those?!), viral videos, and make a return back to the Mad Men era of tapping into the emotional side of their target buyer. Many marketers and corporate leadership have become far too reliant on metrics, which are important, but don’t tell the complete story around marketing effectiveness. In the end, it’s all about what others are saying about you; in 2016, marketers need to find ways to stop doing all the talking and empower their audience with ways to share the message.

 

Thanks again to all the marketers who contributed to this post!

If there are any B2B marketing predictions and trends you’re seeing that weren’t mentioned by our experts, let us know in the comments section below.

You can also stay up-to-date on the latest B2B tech and marketing news by visiting our blog regularly for more digital marketing and PR updates.

 

2016 SEO Trends and more Search Marketing News

January 8, 2016 by

The search marketing industry is always changing, so it’s important to stay up to date on the latest news and best practices. Here’s a round-up of some of the most recent search marketing news and SEO trends in 2016. Hope you enjoy!

2016 Search Marketing Trends to Keep an Eye On

In 2015, the search marketing industry underwent some major changes. From back-end technical tricks to using content as a means for boosting search and social engagement, there are many trends that accumulated in 2015 that search marketers should continue to focus on in the New Year.

Search Engine Land recently published a column with five SEO trends brands should pay close attention to in 2016. In the column, Jim Yu suggests that links will remain a huge ranking factor, search will be more about overall online presence and content, website layout and site engagement will become more significant, structured data will become an even more important ranking factor and mobile apps will need to be optimized for search.

For more information on these trends, read this blog post.

Your Website Isn’t Your Only Search Asset

Organizations tend to limit their SEO strategy to their own website. But, as brands expand their online presence, they should expand their optimization efforts to cover all online channels. There are many ways to increase your search exposure by optimizing social profiles and getting other sites to rank for your brand in search. By optimizing these channels you can increase brand awareness and rank for keywords that you might not be able to rank for on your own domain.

Most social channels are similar when it comes to optimizing your brand for search. Across all channels, it’s best practice to use your brand name as your username, to write a search engine optimized description for your profile containing your brand name and to link to your social channels from your domain.

For more in-depth tips on how to optimize your social channels, read Search Engine Land’s column on expanding your search presence with external sites.

2016 SEO trends - optimize social profiles

How to Scale Manual Link Building

Companies are realizing that they cannot ignore links if they want to be successful in search, but even though these companies recognize links as an important asset they still face the challenge of scaling link building.

Link building is a very manual task. From research, to relationship building, to content creation, to outreach, link building cannot be automated as it is a “human-centric” practice. Search columnist Andrew Dennis suggests that the only way to scale link building is to invest in more human effort and hours. By building a skilled link building team of people who are trained in research, finding and securing opportunities, organizations will be able to more efficiently increase link acquisition.

For more information on how to build a link building team, read this scaling manual link building blog.

Have you noticed any other SEO trends or have search marketing news you’d like to share? Leave us a comment or send us a quick note.

Mixology Monday: Making Your Winter Dreams Come True

December 15, 2015 by

Oh the weather outside is frightful. Ok, it may be an unnaturally warm Monday in December, but nothing can stop Team Arketi from toasting to the winter holidays.

This mixology Monday we’re mixing up a cold batch of Winter Dreams also known as “Christmas in a Cup.”barketi-kf-dec-2015-1

As you venture home for the holidays or brave the malls filled with Christmas shoppers, do yourself a favor and pour a tall glass of Winter Dreams. It may not make your in-laws disappear or place an Apple Watch under your tree, but it does promise to delight the taste buds and take the edge off.

Winter Dream: Mint on the rocksWinter Dream: Cranberries and Mint

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s the recipe, courtesy of the one-and-only Martha Stewart.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 ounces mandarin orange vodka
  • 1/2 ounce Cointreau (orange liqueur)
  • 1/2 ounce fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • Seltzer water – chilled
  • Optional: Fresh cranberries and mint for garnish

Directions:

In a tall cocktail glass add ice and pour in vodka, Cointreau and lemon juice.

Fill to the top with seltzer water and gently stir. Add in fresh cranberries and mint for garnish.

 

2016 Economic Predictions

December 11, 2015 by

This week I heard Dr. Donald Ratajczak, consulting economist and Regents Professor Emeritus of Economics at Georgia State University, speak about the 2016 economic forecast to a group of CEOs and CFOs at the December Technology Executives Roundtable meeting.

Given everything that’s happening on a national and global front, this was a great event to attend to get a peek into what’s in store for next year. Whether you run your own business or your own marketing department, Dr. Ratajczak’s take on the state of our economy, and its impact on Atlanta and our technology community, gives good insight into how you can strategically plan in 2016.

Here are a few observations:

  • Excess inventory: The U.S. continues to struggle here, particularly in the energy and retail markets. Some of this inventory overhang is in oil, while another is in retailer stores themselves. With online purchases up, retailers simply have too many brick-and-mortar stores they don’t need.
  • Dollar losing competitiveness: The dollar is too strong, nearing an all-time 20-year peak.
  • Gas prices going down: This means household purchasing power is increasing.
  • On the hunt for talent: The job market is growing, so competition is increasing to find the best employees. You’ll find more and more companies who are willing to bid employees away from their competitors and invest in training them.
  • Government spending: Look for it to increase on both a state and local level.

2016 economic predictions

Here in Atlanta…

  • The local Georgia economy is growing in line with the U.S.
  • A talent pool is being created in Atlanta, so our challenge will be to keep the talent here.
  • Looking to specific markets, the storage and data processing areas are creating jobs, and the engineering and system design areas are growing.

Come the end of 2016, Dr. Ratajczak predicts the U.S. will have absorbed its excess inventory and will be more growth-prone going into 2017.

Tell us what you think 2016 will look like. What economic indicator is most relevant to your business strategic planning process? Do you have a plan in place to make 2016 a profitable year for your company? Leave a comment or send us a note with your 2016 economic predictions.

Quick Stats on Assessing Marketers and Employing Predictive Analytics

November 30, 2015 by

For marketers, clicks and open rates can only go so far. Ultimately, the leads and revenue generated from marketing activities will assess the ROI of the program. In a recently released survey from 6sense, 70 percent of B2B marketers indicated they’re measured on the amount of revenue generated from marketing and lead-generation efforts for which they’re responsible. Check out the following highlights from the 2015 Survey of B2B Marketers.

Respondents said sales rejects 80 percent of their marketing-qualified leads. When performance is measured by revenue, the vast majority of leads never get past sales and marketers must find a way to make their leads better.

In an effort to do this, one third of companies that participated in the survey currently use some type of predictive analytics tool. Of these companies, only 17 percent have had their predictive analytics tools in place for three or more years.

While this area is unfamiliar to most marketers, the survey shows that will change soon. In fact, 54 percent of respondents who don’t use predictive analytics said it’s likely they’ll invest in the technology in the next one to three years.

Quick stats from 2015 Survey of B2B Marketers

When asked what type of data they use to score prospects, most respondents answered activity and engagement with website and assets. Contact data, such as job title and contact information, ranked second, followed by company data.

These companies’ top goal for predictive analytics is simple – increasing overall lead quality. Other main goals include increasing the volume of qualified leads, increasing the number of sales-qualified leads, and finding new prospects.

User Behavior as Ranking Factor and More Search Marketing News

November 25, 2015 by

Are User Behavior Metrics a Ranking Factor?

There has been a lot of speculation lately about whether Google takes user behavior metrics (click through rate, bounce rate, dwell time, etc.) into consideration when ranking search results. Stirring the pot, Google representatives have given inconsistent responses to whether user behavior is a ranking factor leaving SEOs on their own to experiment.

This week, Masha Maksimava, wrote an enlightening article on the issue—a must read for anyone unsure about whether or not user engagement is considered a ranking factor.

Spoiler alert:  Based on experiments and several statements from Google search engineers, Google must use factors such as click through rate, dwell time and bounce to rank search results. Pages with higher CTRs and dwell times signal to Google that users found what they were searching for, so, in turn, Google will likely rank these pages higher in the search results because they offer searchers a good experience.

Link Building Is Not Dead

In a powerful article, link building expert Eric Ward boldly made the case for manual link building and why it will never go out of style. Putting to rest the controversial “link building is dead” remarks of many SEOs, Ward explained why  link building cannot be automated as building quality links requires manual outreach, in-depth research and personal, genuine relationships.

A lot can be learned from this link building article, so check it out!

Penguin Update is Upon Us, Make Sure You’re Ready

According to Google Webmaster Trends Analyst, Gary Illyes, the nest Google Penguin update is scheduled to hit before the end of 2015.

What does this mean? If you were hit by the last Penguin update (in 2014) you now have the chance to recover. This update will be a real-time version, so as Google finds spammy links, sites will be impacted immediately. On the flip side, when those sites remove spammy links they should see a recovery immediately.

You might be asking yourself, “How do I make sure my site does not get penalized?” To get ready for the update, we recommend doing an audit of all inbound links to make sure they aren’t spam links. While it may be time consuming, discovering spammy links and getting rid of them before the next update can have huge impacts on your search rankings.

The Best Place to Network

November 17, 2015 by

Perfecting the art of networking takes time, requiring you to create your own style and method. With each occasion different from the next, you’ll have events where you know people and others where you don’t know anyone.

For some networkers, it’s not easy to attend an event with a room full of strangers. For others, the strangers are viewed as hundreds of opportunities for new friends by the end of the evening. However, if you’re one of the shyer individuals,  figuring out how to strike up a conversation can be difficult. So today’s networking tip is all about strategic locations and the best place to network at an event.

The Heart of Networking by Ricky Steele touches on many pieces of advice for networking, but my favorite takeaway was to stand by the bar to network – one of the best suggestions I’ve come across. Seriously.Best place to network: by the bar

Everyone loves to drink – hey, it helps take the edge off some events – and they also love to eat.

I’ve tried the approach over the last few networking events, and had great success. Each allowed me to create relationships that lead to new industry friendships or business ventures. After putting Ricky’s words into practice, I have my own top tip on how to conquer networking events every time.

Get to the event early, and meet the bartender and servers.

It’s really that easy. At an event a few weeks ago, I went to the bar upon first arriving to get my way up to the front of the line quickly. Doing so allowed me to help other networkers who weren’t as fortunate to get to the bartender in getting a glass of wine. In providing others with something they were struggling to obtain, it was the perfect gateway into connecting and beginning a conversation that night.

Don’t believe it’s that simple?

A few minutes later a server with hors d’oeuvres walked by and offered a tray full of pizza bites. Since the group was hungry, the stop-by was much appreciated. We jokingly told him to check with us as he had a new tray of food – and he took it seriously. I must have “sampled” every hors d’oeuvre that was served at least three times. When I arrived at the event I was hungry, and when I was left I was full.

This is just one night’s example of how standing by the bar worked out well, and it’s probably my favorite because of the well-connected people I connected with and have since had drinks with. Granted getting to the bar can sometimes be the largest feat of the evening, but it’s paid off for me each time.

Has this trick worked for you? Do you have a tip of your own to add? Leave your comments in the fields below.

Final Fantasy Football – Week 8

November 13, 2015 by

While our Fantasy Football brackets have been in motion for the past few weeks, we wanted to share an inside look at the friendly competition between our FF newbies and veterans. Enjoy!

 

Folks, let me tell you what a good week looks like. In the past week, J.K. Rowling announced she was penning a children’s book. CBS bolstered the spirits of Trekkies everywhere with the unveiling of a new Star Trek series. Carnival discussed plans for a Cuban cruise, highlighting the improving relations between the U.S. and Cuba.

This should have been an amazing week for all, right? But where it really counts, on the Fantasy Football field, dark news gathered like storm clouds, raining down loss and tragedy on many an Arketian and souring the week’s events.

To the results…as the Country Music Awards and drama unfolded, I thought I would pay homage and assign each team a corresponding country music track to describe their performance. Does this sound awesome? Am I genius? The verdict is out, though the jury leans “yes.” Let’s dive in.

Just when we thought parity was trending towards restoration in Week 7, disparity reared its ahead and stormed back in for Week 8. Team Barclay smoked Team Sikorski, moving to 7-1 on the season. Team Sikorski stands at 0-8 for the season.

Now playing for Team Barclay: “Strawberry Wine” by Deana Carter, as the season’s been nothing but sweet for Team Barclay.

Now Playing for Team Sikorski: “ The Christmas Shoes” by Newsong. Does a sadder song exist? Probably not. Does a more miserable fantasy football season exist? No. It’s fitting.

In a battle of “Who could care less about fantasy football,” Team VanderHaar (5-3) emerged victorious over Team Macaranas (3-5).

Now playing for Team VanderHaar: “Drink in my Hand” by Eric Church; the song captures the “no worries” vibe embodied by the continually successful Team VanderHaar.

Now playing for Team Macaranas:  “Should’ve been a Cowboy(girl)” by Toby Keith; it’s looking like Team Macaranas’ football days are on the downhill, so maybe a future of roping cattle is in the books.

Fantasy FootballTeam Fowler trounced Team Cochran, as both teams moved to 4-4 on the season.

Now playing for Team Fowler: “Ol’ Red” by Blake Shelton; Team Fowler was the only Dawg to win this week. Represent Red & Black.

Now playing for Team Cochran: “Landslide” by Fleetwood Mac; a week of horrendous results helped bury the Commissioner in this matchup.

Team England bested Team Parker as the teams moved to 5-3 and 3-5 respectively.

Now playing for Team England: “Gunpowder and Lead” by Miranda Lambert; fierce and fearless, the song captures the essence of the 3 game win streak Team England finds itself on.

Now playing for Team Parker: “Why Don’t we Just Dance” by Josh Turner; as the season goes South, sometimes all there’s left to do is bust a mean move. Where you at, JP?

Team Neumeier and Team Cole reenacted the October 31 thrashing UF handed UGA, as Team Neumeier (6-2) Gator Chomped Team Cole to its 4th loss of the season.

Now playing for Team Neumeier: “House Party” by Sam Hunt; all that’s left to do is to party, as Team Neumeier cruises towards a playoff berth.

Now playing for Team Cole: “Smoke Break” by Carrie Underwood; stress levels are rising for Team Cole (who really isn’t concerned with Fantasy Football), but I’m getting stressed for her! Someone pass the Marlboro Reds…so I can throw them away. Smoking is terrible for you, folks.

In our final matchup of the week, Team Long (5-3) cruised over Team Carlton (2-6).

Now playing for Team Long: “Save it for a Rainy Day” by Kenny Chesney; Team Long may have struggled early in the season, but recent weeks have seen positive results.

Now playing for Team Carlton: “Whiskey Lullaby” by Brad Paisley and Allison Krauss;  not even a good whiskey can soften the pain as Team Carlton nears elimination from the playoff picture.

As Week 8 wraps, we look toward Week 9 for a clearer playoff picture. We’ll provide an update when it happens. But in the meantime, enjoy the week, and enjoy the Arketi Fantasy Football Spotify playlist by clicking here.

B2B Public Relations Talk on biz1190

November 11, 2015 by

Arketi‘s Mike Neumeier joined Eric Holtzclaw of The Eric Holtzclaw Show in studio to give share a glimpse into the expanding world of public relations. PR isn’t just about handling a crisis anymore, PR involves social media management and, according to Mike, is inching ever closer to being identified with driving sales. 

For Tech Tip Tuesday on biz1190, Mike and Eric took a look at the reality of ad blocking in B2B public relations. Check out the entire segment below.

The Eric Holtzclaw Show airs weekday mornings, 11am-12pm. Listen on the go when you have time with the biz 1190 mobile app, available at the App Store and on Google Play.

The Importance of Internal Links and More Search Marketing News

November 5, 2015 by

The search marketing industry is always changing, so it’s important to stay up to date on the latest news and best practices. Here’s a round-up of some of the most recent search marketing news and trends. Hope you enjoy!

Don’t Overlook Internal Links

Broad_chain_closeup (1)

“We need to build more inbound links,” said every SEO practitioner ever. But, could we be spending too much time focusing on inbound links and not enough time focusing on internal links? Search Engine Land contributor, Patrick Stox, insists we should be taking better advantage of the value of internal linking.

For those who aren’t aware, an internal link is any link on a website that links to another page on the same website. In Stox post he urges SEOs to add internal links saying, “If I could impart just one piece of wisdom to the current crop of SEOs, it would be this: Add internal links to related content where it makes sense.”

For instance, when we create new pieces of content we tend to include internal links to related content, but we often forget to go back to older pieces of content and add links to our newer, related pieces of content. The more content you have on a subject, and the more you can show the search engines that you have multiple pieces of content on a subject, the more likely search engines will view you as an expert on the subject.

By not adding links to all related content, you are missing out on stronger rankings. Adding links directs search engines to your strongest content on a subject, signaling to them the pages you consider to be the most important.

#SEOHorrorStories Hashtag Trends on Twitter

You may have noticed that SEO made it to the top of Twitter’s “trending topics” list over the Halloween weekend. Yep, you read that correctly. Last Friday, the #SEOHorrorStories hashtag began and was seen trending later that night and into the weekend. SEO’s from all over the world shared their SEO nightmares with the world and it was enough to keep any search guru up at night.

The official Google Analytics twitter account and Matt Cutts (Google’s former webspam chief) even joined in on the fun. Check out some of the tweets below, but beware, they may have you looking over your shoulder in SEO terror.

“Our website is written completely in Flash. #seohorrorstories” — @googleanalytics

“I was just discussing your sites with some of the webspam team. #seohorrorstories” – @MattCutts

“Is there someone at Google we can call to make an exception? #SEOHorrorStories”

@AlanBleiweiss

“Seo? Yes, I know it! You put your keyword into the title, heading and 5 times into the copy #seohorrorstories #5timesonly” – @xszamankax

Mobile-Friendly Algorithm Update: Say Goodbye to Giant Ad Interstitials

On Monday, Google released an update to its mobile-friendly algorithm, penalizing sites using giant app install interstitials. Google announced sites using these giant app install ads will no longer be considered mobile friendly due to the fact that the ads hide a significant amount of content on the transition between the search results page and the content the user is trying to see. Sites using giant ads on mobile will likely see a decline in search engine rankings.

Google recommends using more user-friendly ad formats, like app install banners, rather than the full page interstitials. Their goal is to make it easier for searchers to see the content of the pages they are looking for.

To learn more about the update and its implications, visit the Google Webmaster blog.