20 Newsletters Every Marketer Needs To Stay Ahead Of The Curve

“The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.”

Humans without ambition – Goodbye and Goodluck!

I am a serious marketer and I want to make it big. 5 Years down the line, I want to groom myself into one of the biggest guys in digital marketing a.k.a. ‘The Wolf’. I restlessly ‘çrawl’ the web for intelligent marketing blogs and consume knowledge liberally. I do not mind sharing my learnings with people who respect time and money.

Know the dynamics of the entire marketing funnel, like the back of your hand.

Read ahead. May the Force be with you.

1. NeilPatel.com

Specialization: Thought leadership

Neil Patel is the co-founder of KISSmetrics, Crazy Egg and Hello Bar, three tools that nearly every SaaS marketer knows, as well as the founder of Quick Sprout, where he helps businesses drive more traffic and make more sales online. Neil also actively consults, invests, blogs and speaks all over the world; in short, he knows what it takes to become a successful entrepreneur.

Analytics: Whatever be the topic, the most striking feature of Neil Patel’s blogs is his love for analytics, which is so obvious in his posts. Neil primarily focuses on analytics to understand customer behaviour to improve conversion rates by tracking the right business metrics.

Actionable: As an entrepreneur, Neil is continuously experimenting and developing new and cutting edge Internet Marketing tactics, while working with some of the biggest brands in the world. All of this experience is reflected in his blog/newsletters. So what Neil offers in his blogs is practical marketing solutions rather than untested hypothesis.

This newsletter will give you practical advice on inbound marketing, It will give you data driven customer insights, it will help you leverage analytics to drive growth, it will guide you towards controlled automation and above all it will give a strong perspective to think about marketing in general. Do not miss out on this newsletter!

Most Shared Article in 2015: How To Use Growth Hacking To Attract and Retain Customers (1.4K Shares)

2. Search Engine Land

Specialization: SEO + SEM + Local Search Marketing

Search Engine Land is a news and information site covering search engine marketing, searching issues and the search engine industry. SearchCap is a daily email newsletter recap of search engine news. It provides a summary of what happened in search at the end of each business day. This includes all stories from Search Engine Land posted that day plus headlines from sources across the web.

SEM & SEO: Subscription to this newsletter will keep you updated on the latest developments in Google and Bing ads, whether they’re tweaking Product Listing Ads, adjusting Enhanced Campaigns, or changing the way ads display on various platforms. This newsletter will also keep you updated on the latest news or how-tos from best SEO practitioners and thought leaders..

Search Engine Land is launching a new industry awards program called “Landy Awards” that will recognize individuals, agencies, and internal marketing teams within the digital marketing community who have demonstrated excellence in executing organic and paid search marketing initiatives. And SEMPO Partners with Search Engine Land for the Landy Awards which will be held on September 30, 2015 in New York City.

The subscription will also keep you updated on the latest news about local search marketing, including tips to help small businesses, franchises and community locations be more visible in locally relevant search results.

Another cool feature about SEL is that they post search engine news stories throughout the day so that the users are informed the instant a new story appears. This is perfect for the content marketers who wants to keep up on everything as soon as it happen.

Most Shared Article in 2015: It’s Official: Google Says More Searches Now On Mobile Than On Desktop (10.7K Shares)

3. Content Marketing Institute

Specialization: Content Marketing + Brand Marketing

Founded by Content Marketing Evangelist and author Joe Pulizzi, Content Marketing Institute, can be described as a blog for brand marketers. The blog and newsletter features some of the best guest bloggers and thought leaders in content marketing space. The newsletter is known for its quality original content.

The blog and newsletter features a post a day written by Pulizzi and other industry leaders who discuss everything related to content, strategy, and tips for hiring. There’s also a weekly round up of current events going on in content marketing, so that readers can learn about the kinds of content other people are putting out. This newsletter is the be-all end-all in content marketing, and a serious source of research and stats.

Resources: Content Marketing Institute also offers many free resources including blogs, webinars, and archived podcasts that you can use to build up your personal knowledge and expertise.

Subscription to this newsletter keeps you updated on one of the most authentic and authoritative opinions in content marketing space.

Most Shared Article in 2015: How to Write Content That Engages Mobile Readers (3.8K Shares)

4. MWWPR

Specialization: PR

What makes MWWPR an essential subscription for a marketing professional is their expertise across practice areas and disciplines and their experience in crafting solutions & strategies that make their clients more competitive.

Comprehensive Coverage: This is the only newsletter which covers the PR related exhaustively. It discusses everything from consumer lifestyle marketing to LGBT marketing, presenting left-brained technology with right-brained content for a well-rounded offering, you won’t find elsewhere.

Research: This newsletter is an authority on PR related Research, insights and strategy. It discusses several meaningful insights and practical ways to develop highly effective communications strategies, using a mix of qualitative and quantitative research.

Strategy: It helps you arrive at the strategy behind targeted communication plans and activating consumer behaviors vital to your business – product purchases, brand recommendations and long-term engagement of key stakeholders.

This newsletter will give you a practical understanding of building working relationships with media, analysts, and other influencers that drive the market conversations. It provides you with all the latest information and skills needed to work with influencers to create your own communities, do original research, events and build partnerships. As a marketing person you need to understand and manage PR, in order to move up the ranks, try MWPR, you will not be disappointed!

5. Marketing Land

Specialization: Digital marketing + Martech

Marketing Land is a news site covering internet marketing, social media, mobile marketing & more. This is a sister site of Search Engine Land. This newsletter keeps you abreast of the latest interactive marketing news, views and how-tos. Each email newsletter will round up everything that Marketing Land has published on the topic in the previous week, including links to news stories and columns by expert practitioners.

Very well classified: This newsletter covers a wide range of topics from Display to search, from mobile to analytics. The topics of the newsletter are very well classified and gives the user the choice to select the topics of his/her choice. This is one of the few big blogs/ newsletters to cover niche topics like Retail, Marketing industry, Martech etc. This is one of the reasons why you should subscribe to this newsletter.

Hottest news: Marketing Land’s newsletter covers the latest developments and techniques in the complex marketing ecosystem. This newsletter gives you the first mover advantage with the latest updates and lets you leverage the upcoming products & tools to your brand or client’s advantage.

This newsletter consistently comes up with fresh, original and shareable ideas and is the one-stop shop for digital retail news and stats, expert opinions, how-to guides and actionable insights. Consider this as your marketing newspaper and subscribe.

Most Shared Article in 2015: What The Unofficial Death Of Google+ Means For Marketing (7.2K Shares)

6. Adweek

Specialization: Brand Marketing

What is the must-read publication for all executives at the largest advertising agencies? I wouldn’t think twice before saying that the answer is AdWeek. A publication which covers strategy, data and branding tailored for CMOs and top marketing professionals. Adfreak, the official blog of Adweek, is an excellent repository for brand marketers and exclusively covers the best and worst of advertising, branding, designing and content writing.

Brand Marketing: Subscription to this newsletter would keep you updated on a wide range of topics related to branding and advertising. The topics covered are essentially at the intersection of advertising, media and technology.

Viral Content: AdFreak is a collaborative effort by AdWeek staffers to chronicle all the latest and greatest campaigns in the ad world. Unlike the straightforward style of AdWeek Magazine, AdFreak presents its contents in a comical, sarcastic manner mildly reminiscent of the great Defamer. One can’t be expected to keep up on all the latest ad campaigns, and that is where AdFreak excels.

Adfreak is a daily blog of the best and worst of creativity in advertising media marketing and design and is a must-read news for marketing, agency, creative and advertising professionals.

Most Shared Article in 2015: What Is Branding? This Thought-Provoking Video Tells You in Just 2 Minutes (11.1K Shares)

7. Marketo

Specialization: Content Marketing Strategy and Marketing Automation

Marketo blog specializes in providing scalable marketing automation solutions. Although this is

targeted at enterprise level clients with large marketing/sales teams and large budgets this blog offers some really cool insights into a content marketing strategy that scales. Marketo blog offers loads of shareable content about marketing.

Now, moving the leads through the marketing funnel can be done faster by integrating ReadyTalk’s reliable webinar solution with Marketo

Marketing Automation: The Marketo blog is one of the most well-designed and thorough marketing sites out there. Marketo blog specializes in Marketing Automation, but is also an excellent source of content on categories such a s modern marketing, content marketing, email marketing, and social media, and every blog contains multiple images that complement the text. The content is fun to read, informative and educative at the same time.

Creative Content: Of all the blogs and newsletters discussed till now, marketo stands apart. They are creative in the way they present their content and their blogs have a viral appeal.

Automation and data are the two overriding themes of the Marketo blog. With a healthy emphasis on email, this blog gets at the heart of modern marketing. Automation will continue to be more important in marketing, so start digging in now.This newsletter is a must for all those who intend to scale their marketing efforts and i.e. practically every marketeer.

Most Shared Article in 2015: How to Integrate Social Media and Blogging from The Art of Social Media (2.9K Shares)

8. Unbounce

Specialization: Landing Page Management and Conversion Optimization

The Unbounce blog features tons of great scientific tips on building amazing web pages that are optimized to collect and convert leads.

Subscription to this newsletter gives you a very good analysis of different landing pages, it provides multiple examples of different landing pages and actionable information on what is good and what is worth testing/changing.

Data Driven Analysis: Unbounce presents content that is supported by scientific evidences and examples. It is all about conducting scientifically sound marketing experiments to build landing pages that convert. All of their posts provide a short critique after each example that can give you some A/B Testing ideas for your landing page.

Best Practices for design testing: For A/B testing, it’s often effective to start with starkly contrasting designs. Once one design wins out over the other, you can start to narrow down your tests with each iteration. This newsletter provides massive amount of useful information on best practices for designing tests.

Most Shared Article in 2015: 32 Ways to Squeeze Leads Out of Your Next Marketing Campaign (7K Shares)

9. Inbound.org

Specialization: Ultimate guide to growth hacking.

Absolutely. This community is full of awesome, friendly, knowledgeable people who legitimately want to help you. Their newsletter provides some of the best business/marketing advice can be learned from other founders.

Awesome community: Regardless of your current role/position you should always join a marketing growth hacking community. Any place where marketers, growth hackers, and founders congregate to discuss is where you need to be and there is no better place than inbound. This newsletter gives you a quick snapshot of the most popular discussions.

Traffic generation: The focus of this newsletter is a bit narrow, it specializes in growth hacking techniques particularly on how to get highly qualified prospects to your site.

Inbound is an amazing community of bloggers, marketers and enthusiasts passionate about non-paid channels like SEO, social media, content marketing, conversion rate optimization etc. Don’t think twice before subscribing to their newsletter.

Most Shared Article in 2015: Today, Facebook announced they’ll be adding a new feature to Messenger that allows you to send money (9K Shares)

10. Marketing Profs

Specialization: Marketing Education & Research

MarketingProfs is an online resource and community for marketing professionals. It provides its members with information via newsletters, blog posts, training and seminars. It is a multi-million dollar company today that serves a community of more than 492,000 entrepreneurs, small-business owners, and professional marketers at the world’s largest corporations. Their newsletter is reflective of all this knowledge and serves as a guide to practical marketing insights, lessons, perspectives, and know-hows.

Knowledge upgradation: It is essential for any marketer to keep abreast of the latest developments and updates in marketing and there is no better newsletter for this than Marketing profs. Marketing Profs is one of the best places for guest posting and naturally attracts good articles.

Wide Range of Topics: With 23 categories of content to choose from, you could spend hours a day reading MarketingProfs. And that doesn’t take into account the podcast, in-depth marketing guides and video tutorials.

This newsletter offers real-world education for modern marketers through training, best practices and research. A must subscription for all marketers.

Most Shared Article in 2015: 2015 Will Be the Year of Video Marketing (3.1K Shares)

11. Convince and Convert

Specialization: Content Marketing and Social Media

A Practical and actionable marketing blog. To the point, crisp and insightful. No wonder Convince and Convert is presently ranked as the #1 content marketing blog in the world, the #3 social media blog in the world, and the #18 overall marketing resource in the world. This is one of the best newsletters for B2B content marketing information.

Killer guest bloggers: The list starts with Jay Baer, founder of Convince and Convert and one of the most innovative thought leaders in this space, known for his consistent & quality content.

Case studies: Their newsletter and blog posts focus on case studies which will help you get better at social media and content marketing through audits, creation of strategic plans, setting up and configuring metrics and tracking.

Convince and Convert is an award-winning blog and comes out with a daily email newsletter called “Definitive”, and the weekly “Social Pros” podcast for social and content professionals. ‘Definitive’ is one of the most sort after newsletters in digital marketing space.

Convince and Convert also provides consultancy services and works with some of the biggest brands in the world. Their newsletter and blog is, therefore, reflective of their experience working for dozens of brands and agencies to bring best solutions to their social media, content marketing and digital marketing challenges.

All of this makes Convince and Convert, one of the best practical and actionable marketing newsletter. Do subscribe.

Most Shared Article in 2015: Why You Should Be Building Trust, Not Traffic (2.6K Shares)

12. Quick Sprout

Specialization: SEO + Link Building + Affiliate Marketing

The Quick Sprout newsletter, comes from one of the most popular thought leaders in Digital marketing Space, Neil Patel and is a must-subscribe for all business owners. If there is one reason for subscribing to Quick Sprout newsletter — that is to never miss a new post. Such is the importance of these posts. Every post is insightful and has practical applications.

Data driven Insights: The content of Quicksprout tends to revolve around entrepreneurial lessons related to online businesses. What makes this blog so special is that it is open about showing real data to validate the information they provide. Seeing real website traffic numbers, conversion rates and growth data is what makes this content so special.

Although Quicksprout specializes in SEO, it has a variety of articles on online marketing and some awesome social media marketing articles.

Awesome infographics: But what differentiates QuickSprout’s content from the rest of the content on the web is it’s use of infographics to explain data driven insights. Such insights help in explaining stuff real quick, this is probably what brings the newsletter it’s 35K subscribers!

Expertise: Neil Patel is an expert marketer and he puts out some killer blog posts that help his audience really get an in-depth grasp on topics like SEO and content marketing, usually a piece that is neglected by lots of ecommerce companies.

Subscribe to this newsletter before you miss out on another article!

Most Shared Article in 2015: The Ultimate Guide to Hashtags (4.6K Shares)

13. Mashable

Specialization: Social Media + Tech + Business

If you are a marketing professional who wants to stay ahead of the curve, then you can’t miss out on the Mashable newsletter. Here’s why.

There are 3 key features which make Mashable newsletter indispensable and the reason this newsletter tops our list.

Wide range of categories: Mashable has mainstream audience spread across techies, marketers, business professionals, and casual social enthusiasts. So they make sure that every blog post has a broad appeal. Mashable newsletter keeps you updated on a wide range of related categories and gives you a good macro picture.

Fresh Content: Mashable always prefers to be in the first group for any piece of news. They consider second hand news to be completely unworthy of publication. Of all the things, they do not compromise on freshness of content!

Viral content: The Patented algorithms of Mashable ensure that you don’t miss out on any content that is going viral. This newsletter keeps you updated on the biggest stories before they become big.

For content marketers staying ahead of the curve means survival. Don’t miss out on this newsletter.

Most Shared Article in 2015: Facebook reaching out to users who might be suicidal (17.8K Shares)

14. Entrepreneur

Specialization: Entrepreneurship + Business

Alert: If you don’t subscribe to this newsletter, you will miss out on some really good quality content!

Entrepreneur magazine is known for its awesome content and amazing contributors. Their ability to attract highly skilled writers, thought leaders, and innovators is one of the reasons why they rank on this list.

Good Quality Content: Entrepreneur mag has a very targeted niche audience. This gives them an advantage to be highly selective about their writers and contributors. They know their audience really well and publish tailored quality content.

Targeted Content: Articles covered in this newsletter pertain more to the aspiring entrepreneurs and early stage ventures, focusing more on topics related to technology and growth strategies. This is especially useful for marketers interested in growth hacking and viral marketing.

Good Categorization: This newsletter clearly categorizes its content into specific topics and lets you choose from these topics. You could subscribe to all the topics or go for particular ones.

From Money & Finance to Growth & leadership, this newsletter covers everything related to entrepreneurship and is a must for aspiring entrepreneurs.

Most Shared Article in 2015: 10 Success Habits That Will Dramatically Improve Your Business (40.4K Shares)

15. Buffer

Specialization: Social Media + Content Marketing

Although the newsletter from Buffer blog specializes in providing good quality content on social media, it also focuses on productivity, life hacks, writing, user experience, customer happiness and business. This makes it indispensable for content and social media marketers.

Social Media: The content of this newsletter as well as its blog is intended towards promoting buffer application,a social media management tool. Naturally the newsletter is social media centric and is a great repository for articles on sharing, creating, analyzing and converting with social media.

User Education: One of the primary reasons for the popularity of this newsletter is that it believes in providing content that educates + motivates readers to take action and still has that viral appeal. No wonder they have succeeded in growing to a 41,231 newsletter subscription base.

This newsletter comes in the form of both a blog and daily newsletter and will give you the ins and outs of scoring big on social media. Their posts will help you maximize your return from social media platforms by educating you on how to measure your performance. While they may not post as often as other blogs, their posts are thorough, detailed and data-driven. Buffer newsletter is full of all the best social media tips, tools, experiments, and advice.

Most Shared Article in 2015: The Psychology of Facebook: Why We Like, Share, Comment (9.9K Shares)

16. HubSpot

Specialization: Inbound Marketing + Sales

This newsletter provides you with the latest Marketing Tips, Trends, and Best Practices in digital marketing space. Known for their actionable content, they cover a wide range of topics that include SEO, blogging, social media, lead generation, email marketing, lead management, analytics, and more. Above all, you can’t mention content marketing without mentioning HubSpot. These guys literally wrote the book on it.

HubSpot software is a sophisticated Marketing platform which helps you in managing Inbound Marketing and Sales. HubSpot maintains specialized blogs for Marketing, Sales, Agencies and Web design.

HubSpot Academy is a blog intended for user education and provides resourceful guides on everything related to Inbound marketing and sales. It provides detailed user guides on topics from Keywords to Call-to-actions.

When you are stuck for ideas, need answers to specific marketing questions, want content to use as reference and to understand new concepts and ideas, spend time on their newsletter! This newsletter provides awesome content on everything related to Inbound.

Most Shared Article in 2015: Do You Really Need That Exclamation Point? [Flowchart] (10.7K Shares)

17. Moz

Specialization: SEO + Inbound Marketing

When we are talking about Moz, there are two things we need to know before getting into the details of their newsletter. One ‘The TAGFEE Code’, two ‘Rand Fishkin’.

The TAGFEE Code: It essentially drives everything Moz does, everything they create and cultivate – their software, content, corporate culture, and relationships. They’re all a direct reflection of their mission to be as Transparent, Authentic, Generous, Fun, Empathetic, and Exceptional as possible. Same goes with their blog and newsletter.

Rand Fishkin, The Wizard of Moz: He’s founder and former CEO of Moz and co-founder of Inbound.org. An active blogger, Rand regularly writes on SEO, content, search, & social on the web, from his multiple blogs. Known for his ‘Whiteboard Friday’ lectures, Rand is today the most sort after thought leader in Digital Marketing space.

Moz Top Ten: Almost everything Moz does with marketing seems to be spot-on and their email newsletter is no exception. Instead of pushing their agenda with tons of their own posts, the Moz Top Ten pulls a bunch of great posts from around the web and shares them with its audience.Their posts cover covers the best stories on inbound marketing, SEO, and social and this is one weekly newsletter people look forward to reading.

Get this Newsletter now! I mean now!

Most Shared Article in 2015: The Web Developer’s SEO Cheat Sheet 3.0 (10.6K Shares)

18. Social Media Examiner

Specialization: Social Media in/and business

Social Media Examiner, the world’s largest online social media magazine, designed to help businesses discover how to best use social media tools like Facebook, Google+, Twitter and LinkedIn to connect with customers, generate more brand awareness and increase sales.

Amazing case studies: Subscribing to their newsletter gives you an update on the amazing research and case studies on social media presented by SME in their blog. This blog is go-to resource for most things Social Media. They cover a wide variety of information and have some have an array of extensive articles and case studies on Facebook Marketing!

Social Media Experts: Social Media Examiner blog is one of the most important blogs dealing with social media, new updates and features, and the usage of social media in business. Want to hear what’s new on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google +, etc? Subscribe their newsletter and you will never miss anything related to social media.

They work with top social media experts to bring you all the news you need to optimize content marketing with social media. Their articles in the newsletter will help you integrate social media into your content marketing strategy.

Most Shared Article in 2015: New Facebook Terms: What Marketers Need to Know (12.1K Shares)

19. KISSmetrics

Specialization: Web Analytics with a focus on ecommerce and SaaS

Everything apart, these stats alone make a strong case for you to subscribe to this newsletter.

– 350k visitors a month

– 82% of web traffic is from the blog

– 70% of leads from blog (15 sales reps)

– $100k-$150k a year spent on blog (infographics, content, content promotion)

– Estimated ROI of $900,000

Data Driven Insights: This newsletter provides you with the most authoritative and scientific methods to optimize your marketing based on metrics and covers this topic in depth. Although this newsletter specializes in Analytics, it is an excellent source for data driven insights on other topics such as Branding, copywriting, E-Commerce, Marketing, Social media, Design, Twitter, Facebook etc.

Customer Insights: As the tagline suggests ‘Google analytics tells you what and Kissmetrics tells you who’, this newsletter provides insightful infographics, Data visualizations and cheat sheets on customer behavior and psychology.

Numbers and data don’t lie — they tell you what is working, what isn’t and how the business responds to testing and changes. Your ability to decipher analytical data and use that information to make changes in your business decides your success or failure. This is exactly what you get out of this newsletter. We highly recommend this newsletter for everyone into digital marketing, especially for budding SaaS and E-Commerce companies.

Most Shared Article in 2015: The Ultimate Guide to 150+ Google Analytics Resources for 2015 (3.5K Shares)

20. CopyBlogger

This newsletter is a preeminent source on using content to market a business and is ‘the’ destination site for SMBs for tools and techniques on content marketing. This newsletter gives you the solutions you need to succeed in improving traffic, links, subscribers, and a profit-generating website.

Pioneers of Content Marketing: The founder, Brian Clark, had already been using online content to build businesses since 1998, way before anyone started using the term “content marketing.” Today, many consider Copyblogger the granddaddy of blog writing and strategy.

Guidebook to web writing: This newsletter serves as a valuable guide for good web writing. Their articles are crisp, to the point and accompanied with a dash of humor. This newsletter is intended for those who are already in the good at blogging and provides advanced training.

Quality Writers: The primary reason for the success of this newsletter is the quality of the writers. Most of them are geniuses and this is no exaggeration. They share the most consummate information on the subject of blogging and content marketing. Their content is always spot on.

Copyblogger produces five to six articles each week. Each blog details the hottest trends in content marketing is written in a simple and engaging way. Subscribing to this newsletter keeps you updated on the latest posts.

Most Shared Article in 2015: 10 Key Factors That Will Determine the Future of Google+ – Copyblogger (3.7K Shares)

What Do Leaders of Successful Businesses Do? And 7 Habits of Effective Leaders

What Do Leaders of Successful Businesses Do?

For a business to be successful, it must have a strong leader. Leadership can make or break a company. This is why public companies pay several million dollars for a new chief executive officer. Below are nine characteristics of successful business leaders. It is therefore important to ensure you are equipped to manage the situation in the best way possible.

Guy Kawasaki has given his opinions on how to handle this difficult process in his recently released book; “Reality Check”. We have summarised a few of his key tips below:

1. Have a positive attitude. Believe that your business is the best business in the world. Self-confidence leads to decisiveness and in particular, the ability to back your own judgment and to take risks. Be determined. Be persistent. Be resilient. Overcome setbacks. Do not dwell on past mistakes and learn from your errors.

2. Love what you do. Enjoy your work and the challenge it provides. Work should be fun, not merely something to be tolerated. Enthusiasm generates a hard work ethic and a passion which becomes part of the culture of your business.

3. Seek wealth creation. Aim to maximise your sales by increasing your prices, selling more to your existing customers or obtaining more customers either in your local area, in another state or in another country. Control your costs. Eliminate waste. Sell unproductive assets and discontinue unprofitable products. Know your business. Measure your marketing. Strategic partnerships with suppliers and customers can give your business greater flexibility and enable you to better manage your costs and maintain or increase your margins. Maintain your competitive advantage. Study your competitors’ assets, capabilities, marketing, costs and culture.

4. Delegate. It is impossible to do everything yourself. It is also unwise as it is more productive to get those with the appropriate skills to do appropriate tasks. The ability to get people with different skills to work as a team is a starting point for all successful businesses. Recruit high quality staff with complimentary skills and organise these people in the most efficient way. Motivate your staff and encourage them to think independently. Non-performing staff which don’t fit the culture of your business need to be replaced quickly because they can affect relationships with your customers and other staff members and ultimately the profitability of your business

5. Seek financial, marketing and legal advice. Have a vision and clear goals. These goals should include future income and the achievement of various tasks. A strategy to grow the business and a detailed business plan consisting of marketing and financial plans are important. Manage your growth at a rate that enables your cashflow to remain positive.

6. Concentrate on doing what you do best. Specialise. Focus on single industries rather than diversifying. Maintain your core business. Outsource non-core activities and functions. Dominate a niche market rather than attempt to serve a large number of markets.

7. Have systems in place. You need the business to run efficiently even if you are away from the office for 12 months. The best example of a company with efficient systems is McDonalds. Teenagers can run their outlets profitably and efficiently because appropriate systems are in place.

8. Worksmart. Success does not mean working 100 hours a week. Today, it is more likely to mean working 35 hours a week and spending time with our family and pursuing your leisure interests. Working smart is much more important than working hard. Spend time working ‘on’ your business and not ‘in’ your business. Seek continual improvement. This may mean more efficient procedures, better systems, better marketing or better cashflow.

9. Have a good support base. Hire staff you can rely on for advice. However, use discretion when listening to advice from others. Encourage training. Foster an attitude of continuous learning both for yourself and your staff. Have a mentor. Be a mentor to your senior staff. Read and attend seminars. Notice what others are doing.

7 Habits of Effective Leaders

EFFECTIVE LEADERSHIP IS something we need to focus on daily. It’s something that takes practice, questioning how well you’re doing, reassessing and best of all continuing to try!

Like any learning, watching others who are good at leading and following their example (otherwise known as R & D – rip off and duplicate) is a successful strategy to follow. So here are the habits of effective leaders:

Clarity of Vision (and ability to share that vision).
Healthy discontent for the present.
High standards of excellence.
A sense of urgency (operating at pace).
Strong commitment to implement.
Ability to eliminate likely distractions.
Build a strong team.

Digital Marketing Decoded Part 2

Last fortnight in part 1 of BizParade’s Digital Marketing Decoded we asked Melbourne internet agency Salsa to share their knowledge on how to get the most out of search engine optimization to help drive your website’s presence in the free search engine listings, and how to get a head start by implementing an AdWords campaign or linking strategy to rank even higher.

In this issue the author talks to three digital marketing agencies to investigate the advantages of implementing digital campaigns, how you can market to your database more effectively, and the benefits of developing a more comprehensive digital strategy to maximize the return on your marketing spend.

Some of the most significant advantages to digital marketing over more traditional mediums include the ability to track the results and measure them against specific desired outcomes and segment your audience, but cost efficiency and fast lead times are also a draw card.
Sydney based digital marketing specialists Permission Communications specialize in digital marketing solutions for a range of medium to large companies spanning the FMCG, fashion and event sectors.

“We use a combination of solutions that are available, for example email marketing platforms, but we also build lots of little applications and solutions that say, well okay you’ve got a need in your business to do this, so we’re going to build a digital solution that can allow you to do that, for instance online surveying systems, event management systems and triggered email systems to name a few,” says Permission’s [insert title], Jeremy Glass.

One of their strengths is developing email solutions including direct marketing, CRM and promotional campaigns right through to more technical solutions including custom-built email systems, integrated email and spam management technology.

“Email campaigns are often compared to direct marketing, but there are significant advantages to online, which traditional direct mail simply cannot offer. Primarily this is the ability to easily measure the effectiveness of an online campaign, which can be more challenging and costly with direct mail,” explains Glass.

Advanced reporting software can track a consumer’s behaviour from the second your email hits their inbox, or they click on your banner ad or upgraded directory listing, right through the consumer’s engagement and purchasing process.

Unlike more traditional mediums where you don’t know if the response to an offer has uptake until the phones start ringing or the consumer visits your store, tracking an email campaign is significantly more telling and it is in real time.

Tracking reveals important information about your campaign and gauges whether it is delivering the desired results. If the results are below expectation, you can track this back to the number of people actually clicking on the email, and whether your subject line was a success. Or, if they opened your email and clicked through to your website, telling you whether your call to action was compelling or if it was clearly understood.

“You get those metrics down to the individual, so you can tell what different people in your database would be interested in, and then you can do a follow-up communication with them specific to that insight so that immediately gives you a lot more power,” adds Glass.

This is the other important advantage of digital: the ability to segment your audience and tailor messages to different groups depending on their purchase behaviour. “The tools which are available for building, sending and managing email campaigns generally come with the capability of both segmenting a database based on profiles of the members of the database, but also using that segmentation to send out content specific to that profile,” explains Glass.

One of the biggest trends in email marketing currently is automated and triggered response emails, which effectively communicates to your subscriber at any given time they act. “It’s based around the principle if you can talk to the person with the right message at the right time, you’re more likely going to.

Gaining these insights so you can segment and target messages gives you the added advantage of adjusting the campaign within the first few days or even hours, which can be critical to your event’s success.

Whilst email solutions are not necessarily cheap, says Glass, they are far more cost effective in delivering ROI against desired outcomes compared to above-the-line because they are relatively inexpensive to produce and they can be targeted so precisely.

In tests run for one of their clients Esprit, Permission found email marketing was five times more cost effective at delivering the same level of response than it was using direct mail. “And that’s just the cost let alone the insight and the information that we got from it,” says Glass.

This can also be said for mobile and interactive wireless marketing solutions, which brands such as Vodafone have been successfully testing since 2005. For the past three years Vodafone Australia has sponsored major electronic music festivals across Australia as part of their ongoing relationship marketing strategy, says AURA Interactive’s Sales & Marketing Director, Adam Dunne.

Similar solutions can be just as effective for implementation at events and conferences, with mobile marketing offering the same advantage of segmenting your database according to their previous purchasing behaviours or preferences.

“Entry level pre-event reminders and post event follow-ups via SMS can be just as effective to remind participants of conference dates or results post event, says Dunne. But being more active during the time they are actually engaged at your event is probably where mobile technology can cut through, given the often-limited access to email.

“Being more active during the event and using the conference database to actually drive traffic through to the seminars or to specific stands and sponsors, sending reminders about session times and potentially prize draws for example,” are all opportunities to add value to the consumer experience cost effectively, adds Dunne.

Measurability is just as easy with the ability to track user’s actions and gauge insights about their behaviour, whilst also being able to react quickly with different messages depending on your desired outcome.

Last minute offers, reminders, and refer a friend campaign can all be instigated at the push of a button and sent directly to consumers based on their previous level of engagement either via email or mobile campaigns, or both.

“From an event marketing perspective, I would look at putting a strategy into place that actually looks at all those different scenarios up front and have it all ready to go because it’s not like a print campaign where if you want something to be ready to go, you’ve got to invest the money, the time, and the logistics and it’s got to be all planned out. Rather, we just make a snap decision and within a couple of hours we can send out a special offer,” adds Glass.

Award winning digital agency, Clear Blue Day’s Peter Bray agrees that planning your digital strategy is integral to achieving better online results. “The adage about failing to plan is a plan to fail is very true. It is essential that you take time to create a strategy, but also you need to be realistic about what you want to achieve, and start with a budget. Having key performance indicators as part of your initial plan is vital so that you can judge your success,” Bray adds.

Specialists in the development of digital strategy, online campaigns, search engine optimization and website design, Clear Blue Day offer a fast and effective method of understanding your business and how digital can best meet your objectives, says Bray.

“The Sprint method cuts out a lot of the meaningless consultancy. Most of Clear Blue Day’s clients come to us with one end game: sell more products and capture more market share. There is no point in spending weeks working out what needs to be achieved when everyone in the room knows the goal. The sprint model allows companies to not only come up with a strategy in minimal time, but also to roll it out quickly. In the time precious world of business, this is vital.”

In a landscape that is constantly changing with the introduction of new technologies and capabilities, engaging a specialist digital agency before you engage your clients is an important first step in planning any digital activity.

“One of the key principles that we often talk about is that there are a lot of little potholes and falling into one of them can actually scuttle your whole campaign,” adds Glass.

“You’ve got to make sure you’ve ticked all your boxes to ensure this doesn’t happen, and I guess that’s the difference between working with someone that’s been doing it for years who is a specialist.”

And, if you are concerned about the costs, then you will be reassured to know the investment is worth it. Online marketing is considerably cheaper and more cost effective than more traditional mediums and there are a number of entry points depending on your budget, ranging from search engine optimization to a fully integrated email system or mobile campaign.

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