Social Media Links of the week (UPDATED)

Discover Other Social Media Tools - Grow thy business

Everyone is familiar with primary and most popular social media tools such as:
  1. Facebook
  2. Twitter
  3. LinkedIn
  4. MySpace
  5. YouTube
Other social media tools that you should be familiar with are:
  1. Blogs - e.g. Website Performance blog - call them digital magazines or diaries
  2. Bookmarks & tags - call them digital yellow stickies
  3. Email Newsletters - a.k.a. digital flyers
  4. Widgets - online gadgets that you can plug-in on your website or blog
  5. Content aggregation sites - these sites effectively cut-out articles from other online sources and repost at one central location
  6. Wikis - large group of peoples can contribute / edit contents here
  7. Voting - people can express their opinion on products and services
  8. Crowd-sourcing - call it a reformed nature of open-sourcing - where you can use the talents of many people around the globe to contribute to a common cause or vision
  9. Discussion boards and forums - Places where people can share their thoughts, comment, or suggestions 
  10. Back-channel sites -
  11. Tweetups - Meetings or casual conferences/get together organized through Twitter 
  12. Photo-sharing sites - Digital photo or album sharing sites such as flickr, picasa,  Kodak gallery or  Snapfish
  13. Podcasting -  This is a very powerful tool that lets organizations or individuals or leaders or self-motivated entrepreneurs broadcast their thoughts, vision, skills with a intent to helping others
  14. Presentation-sharing sites - My favorite is 
  15. Virtual worlds - Do you believe in this, if not check it out what young people go to create second lives? - Also, check out -
  16. Ratings and reviews - Enables people to rate your products or services and write reviews about the same. Remember - look out for any negative feedback about your site, products, and services.... thats what will help you improvise. Customer feedback shouldn't be overlooked at all... usually you find amazing ideas on how to improve your business and focus exactly on what customer wants
This means that the social media world is constantly evolving and ever-changing (for now, at least) at a very rapid pace, and that pace will grow in future.

Check out these Book(s):
  1. The Social Media Bible: Tactics, Tools, and Strategies for Business Success
  2. Londons Times Gen. 2 Social Media Cartoons - Bathroom Twittering - Light Switch Covers - double toggle switch
  3. The Handbook of Online and Social Media Research: Tools and Techniques for Market Researchers
  4. The Social Media Survival Guide: Strategies, Tactics, and Tools for Succeeding in the Social Web
  5. Social Media at Work: How Networking Tools Propel Organizational Performance
  6. Social Media Field Guide: Discover the strategies, tactics and tools for successful social media marketing
  7. Social Media Marketing Machines: Social Media Strategy & Insider Tools For Business Success

Magazines - IM, AM, EM, SMM, SEO, SEM

IM - Internet Marketing
AM - Affiliate Marketing
EM - Email Marketing
SMM - Social Media Marketing
SEO - Search Engine Optimization
SEM - Search Engine Marketing


  1. Visibility Magazine
  2. Internet Marketing Magazine (Lot of videos)
  3. Website Magazine - Also an iPad app available
  4. BtoB - Magazine for marketing strategies
  5. Online Marketing Monthly - get a free month

Direct Email - How does it help?

Direct email is - faster, cheaper, and much more manageable. It is built on the new genre of Internet technology & concept called "Opt-in". Typically "Opt-in" is a way to ensure that the recipient of the email campaign have given the marketer permission to contact them. As outlined in our last post, it could be a newsletter, subscription to blog, weekly highlights, weekly reports, monthly reports, deals, coupons, and much more.

Also, companies today are using their vast existing customer database to figure out their buying patterns and purchasing habits based on their profile information to offer them more personalized promotions, deals, educational material, coupons and many other proven ways to encourage them remain loyal to the company. Retention.

Another key factor here is "Relationship marketing principles" that helps bolster the outcome of direct email marketing campaigns. As discussed email marketing campaigns are better, faster, cheaper, and much more manageable. We need to have the culture deep-rooted in to our marketing programs that focus on loyalty and customer's lifetime value by building and maintaining relationship over time.

Personalization adds great value to direct email marketing campaigns.

Email Marketing - Complements your website(s)

Websites, by its very nature are passive in nature. Have you heard from anyone who just created an awesome looking website, very user-friendly and with great products & features, but not productive? What I meant here is that websites have to wait for the visitors to "pay the visit" and then take appropriate action (passive in nature).

How many visitors regularly visit your website, the real answers is very few. So, what does this mean for you and the marketing team? Its very clear that you cannot run your business by just waiting for visitors to come and purchase products on your site, you need to pro-actively reach out to the mass (targeted audience in your niche) by exercising various tools. One of the most effective tool we are going to focus for this session is Email Marketing.

Email Marketing - Its Proactive & Outbound

Email allows you to change the dynamics of your business by reaching out to the audience and deliver the message you intend your audience to open, read, and take action on. The key is that you will be able to reach out to people who may or may not be interested in your website/products and to existing customers as well.

Email Marketing helps acquisition of new customers and also is a proven tool that helps retention of existing customers.

How websites can complement your Email Marketing strategies?

You need to design your website navigation & flow in such a manner that the visitor is engaged in the process of providing basic information such as Name, Email address, and maybe their interest & phone number (optional). Below are few strategies that you can use online that will drive the visitor to provide the information you need to keep-in-touch with the prospective or existing customer(s):

  • Subscribe to News letters
  • Subscribe to Special Promotions
  • Subscribe & download free whitepapers, ebooks
  • Subscribe for a free event (Webinar/Seminar)

(To be continued...)

Email Marketing - Bright side v/s Dark side

Email marketing is one of the most powerful direct marketing tool that has ever existed. In early days of internet marketing it was used primarily for customer acquisition, but email marketing have grown and matured with time and now is also used for customer  retention.

Based on research an average for a customer connected to Internet tends to receive anywhere from 80-140 email per week, which is tremendous inflow. Generally, people tend to Open, Read, and Respond to emails, especially when they know the company or person. And, the dark side about emails is that people tend to delete marketing and promotional emails without even caring to open and read the same. Some of the advanced user also create filters/rules to move marketing and promotional emails to separate or delete folders. Lot of unwanted emails are automatically filtered from Inbox by the programs like Yahoo, MSN, Google, and so on.

Similar situation exists, in corporate world, where the email server is configured to identify and eliminate useless emails... But, that's affecting genuine marketing and promotional emails as well (Sad side of the coin).

Challenge 101 - The greatest challenge for all email marketers is to figure out means to rise above this clutter of emails and precisely focus on "What is going to get the attention of customer or prospect to your email and make them open, read, and act".

What does Internet direct marketing (focus on Email) bring to the table? - It brings an amazing blended mix of informational, educational, entertaining, and promotional communications directly with the prospect or existing customers.

Types of Email Marketing Programs - below are different types of email marketing programs that marketers use and you as a customer run into knowingly or unknowingly": (Credit for below content goes to - Hans Peter Brondmo)

Unwanted (Don't want to use the term Sxxm not sure if Google will like it or not)
  • Unsolicited
  • Unexpected
  • Unwanted
  • Soon-to-be unlawful
Campaigns and Opt-in Lists
  • One to many
  • One Message
  • One Way
  • Exclusively promotional
  • List driven
Customer Dialog and Service
  • Individualized
  • Integrated
  • Interactive
  • Informational
  • Program-oriented
  • Profile & Data-driven

Do you know these - about Email marketing

Test Your Knowledge
  1. What percentage of the U.S. online consumer population cites email as the top reason they connect to the Internet?
  2. Who is credited with creating email in 1972?
  3. What are the five roles of email?
  4. What is one way you can measure the economic impact of your email marketing program?

Top 10 Questions asked about Email Marketing?
  1. What is the difference between a hard and soft bounce?
  2. Is an out of office auto-reply a bounce?
  3. What is a good open or click-through rate (CTR)?
  4. What do I need to do to get past spam filters?
  5. Why should I send a text version
  6. Why include a hosted web-based version?
  7. What is the main factor in achieving a successful email marketing campaign?
  8. What white-lists are you on?
  9. How do I ensure I don’t get blacklisted?
  10. What time of day and day of the week is best to send an email?

    Top - Email marketing - Product Comparison References

    Email Marketing Services Review

    Get The Word Out - Email is the most popular method of communicating with people who are remotely located. It's the most useful tool that works to your advantage in promoting your business to new and existing customers.

    You can check out any of the below to get details about email marketing programs and their comparison links:

    Email Marketing at your fingertips with Swiftpage Email Marketing 2.0 Free Report 250x250
    Comparison  Links:
    1. Email Marketing Service Review - Top Ten
    2. Email Marketing Tree - Comparison Chart
    3. Compare - Email Marketing Programs
    4. Compare - Email Marketing Program Prices

    Email Marketing from InfusionSoft

    InfusionSoft - Download free report on Email Marketing below

    Marketing Automation Demo

    Email Marketing

    Capture leads, create beautiful emails and automatically follow up using autoresponders.
    Powerful Email Marketing with Smart Automation

    Tailor your messages to your audience based on interests, preferences, purchase history, etc.
    Email Marketing with Integrated CRM

    Put your marketing and follow-up on auto-pilot and still deliver meaningful messages.
    Multi-media Email Marketing

    Expand your email campaigns with letters, postcards, faxes, and voice messages.
    Plus, their Small Business Experts will provide you with the proven Success Path to double your sales.


    Email Marketing 2.0 is the next generation of email marketing for small businesses. By combining traditional email marketing with a powerful CRM, small businesses can send relevant and targeted email messages to the right audience at the right time, automatically. Permission-based Email Marketing 2.0 goes well beyond the typical autoresponder system. It opens the door to personalized communication with customers and prospects that will lead to increased sales and improved relationships. As sales and relationships improve, a small business owner's freedom will expand.
    Email Marketing 2.0 Free Report 250x250


    For many years, email marketing software for small businesses has lacked the ability to segment lists in order to send targeted emails. Now, email marketing software combined with a CRM gives small businesses a better way to grow fast. Infusionsoft is the email marketing solution for small business. No upfront fees, no hassles, no contracts. Just reliable, consistent email marketing…and a comprehensive CRM system…and a powerful automation engine…and great support…and lots of other great things, too.

    24 Strategies that work Online & On Social Media

    Here are some of the strategies that you or your company can implement to increase brand recognition & awareness online and on social media networks:
    1. Publish 4-7 articles per month on your blog - be a creator
    2. Post replies to blogs & in forums - be a critic
    3. Publish at-least 1 Video or Podcast every month
    4. Host the Blog on your own domain
    5. Consistently engage visitors in Poll, Surveys & encourage them to comment
    6. Blog should be targeted to train/educate and increase awareness amongst the visitors
    7. Sign-up for Google Alerts
    8. Do your homework on "Keyword research" to ensure your blog makes its well-deserved space in Search engines
    9. Do you eMail Blast
    10. Add Facebook Like or Tweet buttons, probably with Counts
    11. Engage in Search Engine Optimization
    12. Engage in Search Engine Marketing
    13. Direct engagement with potential customers
    14. Stories sell - share the reviews, stories you know about the products & services
    15. Consistently provide TOP 10 list to your visitors
    16. Maybe you can write something controversial (not in real sense) - but the key is to provide another point of view from the one where everyone else is following - this can  create lot of buzz and visits
    17. Provide product reviews & comparisons (unbiased) 
    18. Setup your own or company profile on Facebook & fan page
    19. Publish posts/articles through the company page
    20. Add videos from & to YouTube
    21. Custom design your twitter profile page - to for brand recognition
    22. Always reply to those who follow you (Respect & Reach)
    23. Do not post stories directly in Twitter or Facebook or LinkedIn or any other social media site - their Shelf life is just minutes
    24. Rather - publish stories on your own blog - where the shelf life is almost infinite
    I'm sure there would be tons of other ideas that would work. Not, all ideas would work for everyone as a matter of fact. But, these are worth trying.

    Test... Test... Test...

    SwiftPage - Events on Email Marketing

    Upcoming Events

    Tuesday, January 18: Basic Swiftpage Demo and Basic Drip Marketing Demo
    Wednesday, January 19: SalesLogix E-marketing Demo and Sage E-marketing for ACT! Product Training
    Thursday, January 20: Practical Drip Marketing Scenarios Live Demo and Swiftpage for Sage CRM Live Demo

    Past Events

    Thoughtspot Article: 4 Techniques to Strengthen Your E-marketing Strategy
    Drip Marketing Webinar Series: Creating Your First Drip Marketing Campaign hosted by Susan Clark

    Create, Send, Track with Swiftpage

    Email Marketing Software - SwiftPage

    Email Marketing Software - SwiftPage

    Execute sophisticated email campaigns, capture leads with web forms, nurture prospects automatically with automated marketing and identify your hottest leads using a ranked call list that reveals your most interested prospects all within your database. 

    Free for 60 Days - Start Now with Swiftpage

    1. Connect with your contacts directly from your database or manage your list with Swiftpage Connect. Easily create and send emails and trust your messages are delivered with Swiftpage. 
    2. Obtain quality leads from your website or link from an email to gather more information from your current contacts with Swiftpage's Survey Tool. 
    3. Let us rank your contacts and determine who to follow up with first, with the Swiftpage Call List. Also, get the most from your emails with detailed, graphical Swiftpage reports.
    4. Plan and execute intelligent marketing communication sequences automatically. Now with Postcard and Telemarketing stage fulfillment. Not only is it smart, but it’s effortless too.

    Email Marketing Professional 2010

    Free Email Marketing Software

    Email Marketing Professional 2010 is free email marketing software that allows you to create and send promotional emails in seconds. Seconds after installing, you will be able to send promotional ads, newsletters, coupons, and more.

    Why pay over $400 dollars for software that sends rich, attractive HTML emails to countless contacts? Email Marketing Professional empowers your business or organization by keeping in constant contact with your customers or leads. This powerful software has all the features of the top commercial email marketing software on the market today.

    What do you think about Mobile Commerce?

    Check out these links if you want to know where are we headed.
    1. Mobile Commerce Daily
    2. eCommerce Mobile Trends
    3. Mashable - 2010 Mobile Commerce Trends
    4. mCommerce Trends by Cart2Mobile
    5. Mobile Commerce Grows in 2010 Going into 2011
    6. Top 10 SMB Technology Market Predictions from MobileCommercetrends
    7. Mobile Commerce Growth Prospects by 2015

    Mobile Trends in 2010 & 2011 - Presentation

    2010 Mobile Influencers: Trend Predictions in 140 Characters, By TrendsSpotting
    Let us take a step back on the predictions made by TrendsSpotting for 2010 and how it will lead or kick start 2011.

    View more presentations from Taly Weiss.
    What does this tell us about 2011?

    I believe these areas are the key and most of the predictions and reality will be in these areas for 2011:

    1. Mobile Commerce will be a big boom
    2. Big Vendors need to bring ORDER to the Social Media Chaos
    3. App Stores will be barometer for determining customer needs
    4. Shift to Cloud Computing and SaaS is the key and irreversible
    5. Tablets & Marketplaces will burst with applications for convenience
    6. Better & faster integration will be the key (ask
    7. Virtualization will be on the run\
    8. Unified collaboration and communication suites (Office 365 - in cloud)
    Additional Reference(s):
    1. Mobile Commerce : Opportunities, Applications, and Technologies of Wireless Business
    2. M Commerce: Technologies, Services, and Business Models
    3. Mobile and Ubiquitous Commerce: Advanced E-business Methods (Advances in Electronic Business (Aebus) Book Series)