Amazon Seller Registration: Everything You Need to Know to Get Started

So you want to start an online business but aren’t sure where to begin. Of course there’s tons of options out there, right? There’s eBay and Etsy, blogging and Bitcoin. And of course, my favorite, Amazon. Yet, for new and aspiring entrepreneurs, setting up an online business can be intimidating. That’s why I wanted to take a little time to break down the process of creating an Amazon business. This guide will cover the basics of Amazon as well as show you how to navigate Amazon seller registration. I’ve broken it down in four parts. Overview of the material: First, I’ll cover the basics of starting an Amazon business. Don’t let the word “business” make you think that you have to go all out and set up a corporation. An Amazon business can be as big or as basic as you want it to be. Next, I talk about what it costs to sell on Amazon. I think you’ll find it’s actually pretty inexpensive, especially if you compare it to the tens of thousands you’ll need for a brick and mortar store. After that, I’ll walk you through the steps of Amazon seller registration and creating an account on Amazon. Finally, I’ll … Read More

The post Amazon Seller Registration: Everything You Need to Know to Get Started appeared first on Jungle Scout: Amazon Product Research Made Easy.



4 Use Cases of AI for B2B Marketers

AI has evolved significantly since the days of Siri’s languid chats with John Malkovich. It not only eases the burden of compiling and parsing information but is beginning to offer new and unique insights. In other words, the days of AI being primarily a buzzword are coming to an end.

Marketers, in particular, are finding that AI is more applicable to their business challenges, with user-friendly, pragmatic products seeing successful adoption. And, as AI and machine learning marketing capabilities are giving B2B marketers more lift and scale across their programs, this exciting tech is poised to become standard best practice as fast as it becomes available.

Here are four key ways that AI platforms and technologies are changing the game for B2B marketers right now.

1. Content: Delivery, Not Creation

Great content is expensive and time-consuming to create. Is it any wonder that so much has been made of AI programs can write content, web pages and emails that are grammatically correct and that target appropriate keywords? As a content marketer myself, I’m fascinated by these technologies, but extremely skeptical that we’re anywhere near an application of the technology that passes a sort of B2B content marketing Turing test. The truth is, the web (and your buyers’ inboxes and social streams) are full of mediocre content. More mediocre content will not stand out in the din of content marketing, and no AI program can generate the kind of new, creative, innovative ideas that will get your brand noticed. Yet.

But that doesn’t mean there’s no room for AI in content marketing.

Where B2B marketers can really flex some AI muscle is in content delivery. Standing out in today’s digital marketplace means maintaining markets of one with thousands—or even millions—of prospective buyers. That means delivering the right content to the right contacts at the right time, but that kind of personal interaction is impossible to scale.

Content marketing AI can scan your entire website and/or content library, categorize and organize the content you create, and deliver the right offers, pages, emails, social media posts, and more, to each buyer at every interaction. That keeps you doing what you do best—creating amazing content and campaigns—and lets AI do what it does best—giving you the lift of super-precise targeting across an enormous number of interaction points.

2. Social Media: Expand Your Audience

It is important to not just look for artificial intelligence you might add to your arsenal, but to examine what AI you might already be using and simply need to leverage better. If you want to experiment with AI and see the impact it can have on your marketing, look no further than Facebook Ads.

Facebook’s Lookalike Audience is a brilliant product that uses your first-party data to help you “find more people who look like your current customers.” With Lookalike, you can create custom audiences and massively expand the impact of your marketing—all based on behavioral data. This data can be:

  • Pulled from a website by installing a pixel.
  • Pulled from Facebook by assessing people who like your page.
  • Uploaded directly as a list of current customers for Facebook to examine.

Similar technology is available for B2B marketers that scans digital signals from all over the web. Predictive lead scoring and predictive account scoring also use AI to expand your ability to reach buyers who look like your customers—in other words, opportunities that align to your ideal customer profile.

3. Google: The AI We All Use Every Day

Social companies like Facebook aren’t the only ones leveraging AI and machine learning to optimize the effectiveness of their ads. With Google touching upwards of receiving up to 3.5 billion searches every day, their RankBrain system might be the AI that people already interact with most, without even realizing it.

What is RankBrain? In short, it’s Google’s machine learning program that determines what and where results should be ranked in organic search. So how do you leverage it for your business’s marketing? By learning to use it.

But is RankBrain worth a B2B marketer’s time? Undoubtedly. As many as 90% of B2B buyers turn to a simple Google search to begin their buying journey, giving the businesses that adapt to RankBrain a distinct advantage. On top of the sheer amount of traffic coming from Google searches, SEO leads have a 13% better close rate than outbound leads.

While RankBrain hasn’t replaced the traditional SEO factors like keywords and backlinks, it is approaching things a bit differently. Now, a mere 53% of top 20 search results even have keywords in the title. Google is getting smarter thanks to RankBrain’s improved natural language processing (NLP), allowing it to parse human language and identify relevant results with more than just keywords. It remains for B2B marketers to lean into the change that Google’s AI is bringing to SEO strategy.

4. Email: Personal Conversations at Scale

Contrary to popular belief, email isn’t dead. It’s just wildly misused. With 270 billion emails sent every day, whether or not yours makes the cut comes down to how intelligently the message is targeted.

For the marketer, that boils down to timing, testing, and segmentation. Here again, AI can help, due to its ability to turn huge volumes of data into useful insight. AI that looks for the right elements can help segment customers, predict the outcome of a multivariate test, or even help you find receptive, adjacent audiences for a specific campaign.

Artificial intelligence and machine learning have been working for email marketers for years now, and many email and marketing automation platforms will emphasize their AI powers. The key to finding the right AI for email marketing is to invest in one that updates audience segments in real time, has predictive content capabilities, and provides a robust and marketer-centric vision for where AI will enhance the product in the future.

The Potential of AI, Made Practical

Just like all major technological innovations, artificial intelligence has been met with an initial level of distrust and even fear. However, most marketers recognize that AI is really only solving problems that they were already having: like maintaining personalized interactions at scale and gaining better insights into their buyer journeys.

How is AI serving your marketing strategy? Any use cases I missed?

The post 4 Use Cases of AI for B2B Marketers appeared first on Marketo Marketing Blog – Best Practices and Thought Leadership.


Why You Should Be Using Facebook Canvas Ads

Facebook has plenty of ad types to choose from depending on your marketing goals. Image ads…carousel ads…video ads…well most of us advertising on Facebook have probably utilized these types. But have you used canvas ads? If not you probably should test these out. They are an engaging and immersive ad type perfect for capturing and retaining users’ attention. Let us take a look at four reasons why you should test canvas ads. For all data presented I am using a 30-day window where canvas ads ran against video ads.

Mobile Traffic

In today’s marketing world, we must understand that mobile traffic is not only growing but it will soon dominate overall online traffic in a few years. Here are a few facts to wrap your head around according to Facebook.

  • More than 2 billion people are visiting Facebook every month
  • People spend around 3 hours per day on mobile devices with 58% of that time being spent in apps
  • 74% of millennials take action after being inspired by a post seen on mobile
  • 33% of shoppers research on mobile before buying on desktop or offline

Knowing this, wouldn’t you want to make sure your advertising efforts are geared towards mobile consumption? That is exactly what canvas ads work to achieve. They are a full screen, immersive experience built for mobile users on Facebook. When users click on a canvas ad they are given a microsite-like experience that allows them to watch, click, scroll, swipe and tap to engage with brands right on the Facebook platform. You can utilize this to grab users attention, tell your story, and entice further action from users.

Higher Reach

One of the most important aspects of social advertising is making sure your message is seen by people on Facebook. As an advertiser, you should want the maximum reach possible with a given budget. So utilizing ad types that Facebook algorithms and users prefer will help to achieve that goal. Its common knowledge that Facebook has really been pushing for content that is video focused. So why not make content that is not only video focused but mobile specific. In the below table you can see that given the same budget and runtime, canvas ads achieved a higher overall reach than regular video ads.

More Engagement

A good indicator if people are engaging with your content is, well, looking at your engagement metrics! These metrics aren’t an end-all measurement of success but can be a good measure if you are putting out the right content. In the below graph we can see that in the given 30-day window, canvas ads achieved more clicks and generated more post reactions from users. More engagement from users on your ads could help to achieve not only more clicks but more likes, comments, and shares which equates to social proof.

More Conversions

At the end of the day, we want our advertising efforts to equate to something right? Whether that be sales, leads, sign-ups, etc… we need to see results from our ads. So we want to make sure we are running the most effective ads for not only capturing attention but also pushing people towards that end goal. For this particular case, canvas again proved more valuable than just a normal video ad. Canvas provided more conversions, more revenue, and a lower cost/conv compared to video ads given relatively same spend.


This is just one data set for one advertiser and not meant to claim canvas ads are the greatest thing ever. However, they proved worthwhile in this instance and could work for you too. It never hurts to test out new content to try and achieve better results. Plus Facebook makes creating these ad types pretty easy with the use of their templates. So give canvas ads a try!


The Future of Ad Copy in an AI World

Artificial intelligence, and what it means for the PPC industry, is buzzing around like crazy right now. As we see more and more automation tools come out, we are constantly wondering how it will change digital marketing. Have you thought about what AI could impact your…ad copy? With ad copy being controlled by automation, how will you be able to stand out? And how much control will you have with your ad messaging?

In this webinar, AdFury’s Christopher Hoover and Hanapin’s Lauren Rosner will discuss the hot topic of AI and what the future could look like when automation becomes more and more popular in our industry – the good, the bad, and the challenging.

You’ll learn:

  • The difference between AI vs deep learning vs. machine learning in our industry
  • How you can write better ad copy that makes your brand stand out even in the midst of automation
  • How to take advantage of natural language processing and pattern matching
  • How to adjust your competitive strategy while using AI for your ad copy



Reasons to Not Use an Automated PPC Bidding Strategy

AdWords offers many fantastic automated PPC Bidding Strategies for your accounts and campaigns. In a previous article, I discussed When Flexible Bid Strategies Are Right For You.  Recently, Krista Hsieh wrote an excellent article about Testing New Bidding Strategies Through AdWords Experiments. In this article, we are going to discuss reasons you might want to avoid using automated bid strategies.

How Do Automated Bid Strategies Work

How do automatic bid strategies work? AdWords Smart bid strategies use machine learning (AI) based on the historical conversion performance in your account or campaign. The AI uses the historical data points to make bid adjustments in each individual auction based on the predicted outcome. In order for the system to make the best adjustments, it requires accurate and consistent conversions trends.

You also need to allow the bid strategy to run for at least 2 – 3 weeks before determining if the strategy is right for your campaign. Also, as Krista described in her article, it is a great idea to test the bid strategy in an experiment before applying it to your campaigns.

15 Conversions Minimum

AdWords says you need 15 conversions in the last 30 days. Um, not so fast. I would say 15 conversions at the absolute minimum. Not only should your campaign have at least 15 conversions, but you really need to have at least one conversion every other day. Also, if you are going to test the bid strategy inside an Experiment, it will split your data by 50%, so you will want to have double the minimum.

One thing to consider, is if your campaign has sporadic conversions or wild seasonal fluctuations, you may want to avoid using any bid strategies that focus on conversions, CPA, or even revenue. In the example below, this campaign had 16 conversions in February, but we can see the performance is not consistant. This campaign would not be the best candidate for automatic bid strategies that focus on conversions.

In this next example, you can see exact same campaign had only 5 conversions in March. AdWords system may be smart, but these trends are not steady enough to rely on automatic bid strategies that focus on historical conversion trends. So, before you decide if bidding strategies are right for your campaign, you will want to review the performance over a longer date range.

Maximize Conversions and CPCs

In a situation where you do not have enough data, bid strategies like maximize conversions can go crazy and drive up the CPCs. In the example below, this campaign only had 8 conversions total, and maximize conversions drove up the CPCs. They had CPCs as high as $56 for a single click that didn’t result in a conversion. We can expect these types of CPCs for a lawyer, but these would be expensive clicks for most accounts.

Consider Your Conversions Types

Another thing you will want to consider is the type of conversions you are tracking. In this account, we have 17 conversions in the last 30 days, but 9 are phone calls and 8 are transactions. The system is unable to determine the difference between a good call and a bad call. The technology is not designed to see if the call duration was 2 minutes or 24 minutes. The system would simply optimize get the most conversions without consideration of type or quality. This is especially true for many lead generation clients, just because you received a lead, does not mean it will result in a sale.

Short Durations or New Campaigns

If your campaign is new or is only going to run for a short time, you may want to avoid most automated bid strategies. The only strategy that might make sense is Maximize Clicks. This strategy is focused on getting the most clicks within your budget and won’t rely as heavily on historical data. One word of caution, always set a max bid limit. Not setting maximum CPC bid limits is a receipt for disaster.

In some campaigns, I have found maximize clicks reduces our costs and improves the conversion performance. You can see a big difference in conversion performance after switching to maximize clicks. However, if you are interested in maintaining a dominant ad position, this bid strategy would focus on clicks and not position.

Localized or Niche Campaigns

Some accounts that are localized or have very niche products or services may want to stay away from automatic bidding. For example, if you are targeting a small area and narrow audience, you may want to go with manual CPCs so you can stay on top of your bids and budget. One option might be test Target Outranking Share if your competition is small and you know their domain.

Conversion Tracking

Check your tags often, if your tag breaks, your data will not be optimizing properly. There have been many occasions where the web developer updates the website and suddenly our conversion tracking is missing. Or worse, it has been installed on every page and recorded every visitor as a conversion. The machine learning will only be as accurate as the data it is receiving.

Closing Thoughts

Automated bid strategies can be an effective tool for many campaigns and accounts. However, you never want to set a bid strategy and forget to monitor performance. It might be a good idea to create automated notifications for any wild fluctuations so you can get on top of it quickly.


3 Highly Effective Ways to Tell Your Brand’s Story

Ever feel like you’re seeing the same content over and over again online? Today, according to Statista, 96% of businesses use social media, and the digital market is more saturated and competitive than ever before. It’s no longer a question of should your business be on Instagram, but rather, how do you make your brand stand out from all the rest? In this new digital world, you may wonder whether there are any effective ways to make your brand stand out from the pack. There are—and they involve getting back to the fundamentals.

The key to crafting a compelling brand story is to ask yourself, “What is the ‘why’ behind what my company is doing?” To quote Simon Sinek, the “why” is the driving force that provides solidity and continuity for your company—like the foundation of a house. While product offerings and marketing tactics may change, this foundation remains the same. Brands that can identify their “why” and use it as the central theme of their messaging are better equipped to cut through the noise.

My company, Later, keeps our brand in mind with everything we do. Whenever you see a piece of Later creative, you’ll know it’s ours right away. How? Because even though we vary our message enough to fit each medium, we are diligent in remaining consistent—and therefore recognizable—across all channels. Whether it’s an ad, social media post, content on a landing page, or our product itself, the message always embodies our brand and furthers the conversation around it.

Visual marketing is what we teach others, so we’re committed to always proving that it’s at the core of our brand identity. By weaving a visual thread throughout all of our messaging, we’ve developed a loyal following. People can see for themselves that we follow through on our own intentions—and that builds trust and creates curiosity.

So how do you turn your “why” into revenue? Running a modern internet company, I’ve thrown thousands of ideas against the wall to see what sticks in terms of telling the kind of brand story consumers will respond to.

In this blog, I’ll cover which techniques work well to tell your brand story and which ones are best left on the cutting room floor.

1. Create One-Of-A-Kind Offline Experiences

When it comes to epic brand experiences, REVOLVE is leading the charge. The e-commerce brand travels around with ultra-popular models and influencers and throws insane parties at glamorous locales like the Hamptons.

Sounds great for boosting exposure, right? It is, but the influencer scene is about more than brand awareness for REVOLVE. By inviting influencers to highly curated experiences, such as the invite-only REVOLVE Social Club, the brand inspires a following not only in its brand but also in the lifestyle associated with it. When the e-commerce brand opened its elite club to the public for a festival-style pop-up this spring, followers were eager to participate in the same lifestyle—and purchase the same items—as their favorite influencers.

The brand also dominates the Coachella music festival, which has become a competitive event for companies fighting to give away the best swag and sponsor the biggest acts. From flying New York-based celebrities like A$AP Ferg and Danielle Bernstein to the event via private jet to co-hosting a brunch with Nicole Richie, REVOLVE clearly takes the prize for brands using the hottest influencers to bolster its lifestyle brand.

Nordstrom recently launched its newest retail store, Nordstrom Local, which offers hand-pressed juices, personal styling—and no physical merchandise. Instead, its personal stylists handpick items from across the chain for specific shoppers. These tactics communicate the brand’s “why”—to offer convenient shopping services to guests—and provide new opportunities for consumers to connect with the brand on a more personal level.

While not every brand has the budget to fly influencers in private jets, there are easier ways to connect with real-life people and solidify their connection to your brand. Hosting meetups for VIP customers is one way to replicate this, but even providing customers with curated to-do lists in various cities can help them feel connected to your brand in a way that a trip to your e-commerce site will not.

2. Involve Your Audience In Your Mission

Whether you’re selling sneakers or software, involving customers in your brand’s long-term mission will drive brand loyalty. When customers feel passionate about your brand story, they’ll be more likely to stick with you for the long run.

Take tentree, the environmental apparel company that plants 10 trees for every item purchased. Its mission is to “become the most environmentally progressive brand on the planet,” and Instagram plays a key role in relaying its core values and sharing its brand story. The company works with a team of brand ambassadors and relies heavily on user-generated content to showcase a lifestyle dedicated to the outdoors and social impact. To date, tentree has amassed 2.3 million followers and has planted more than 17,590,000 trees.

Through this model, tentree has created a virtuous cycle: its photos inspire users to purchase apparel, which results in more trees being planted—and more photos of users wearing its clothes, which the brand can then use to further populate its Instagram page. By selling a movement, not a product, tentree has built a successful business that depends on the strength of its visual storytelling to stay profitable.

Engaging customers in your story can be easy with the tools at hand. Consider creating brand-specific hashtags to encourage user-generated content, and offer incentives for people to participate in your campaigns. Adding a collaborative element to your brand’s visual storytelling can help users feel like a part of your mission, rather than just witness to it.

3. Be Privacy-Conscious With Your Branding

It’s a Catch-22: Brands are no longer concerned about shocking their customers with granular targeting, but they don’t want to anger them by violating their privacy. This creates an opportunity to stand out from the pack by establishing your brand as one that is conscious of your customers’ privacy. Consumers who are targeted when browsing for makeup or cleaning supplies may not care whether the details of those searches start popping up all over their browser, but they’re not as laid-back when it comes to medical details or major life events.

Spotify’s year-end campaign is a great example of data used well. Their 2017 Wrapped feature provided members with fully customized playlists based on their listening habits. Not only does the campaign make members feel valued by Spotify, but it also helps reiterate users’ dedication to the platform by highlighting just how many minutes they spent streaming music last year. Reactions to the feature have been largely positive, with users sharing their personalized results across social media channels and news outlets applauding Spotify for its ingenuity.

By contrast, Netflix tried to recreate this success with a tongue-in-cheek tweet about users’ viewing habits. While some maybe saw this as a harmless joke, many others called out Netflix for shaming its subscribers and violating their privacy.

You can still use your customer’s data to target them—just make sure you treat it as discreetly as your own company data. If you want to highlight user data as part of your brand story, be sure to offer customers something in return. Remember, there’s a difference between giving users new insights on their own behavior and exposing that behavior to a large audience. By being sensitive and smart with users’ personal information, you can rise above your peers in the eyes of privacy-conscious consumers.

In short, using digital marketing to stand out requires more than simply copying the content strategies of your competitors. If your brand can find its “why” and convey it in a compelling way across all channels, you’ll be able to establish a strong presence in a crowded online landscape.

How do you tell your brand’s story? Have you used any of the strategies I mentioned? I’d love to hear about what you’ve done in the comments.

The post 3 Highly Effective Ways to Tell Your Brand’s Story appeared first on Marketo Marketing Blog – Best Practices and Thought Leadership.


Amazon Terms of Service: Prohibited Seller Activities Explained

Here at Jungle Scout, we get a lot of questions about the Amazon terms of service and prohibited seller activities and actions agreements. That’s why we decided to post it all here and break down what each and every part of it means. Notes on formatting: I’ve broken each element of the “prohibited seller activities and actions” agreement and simplified it with a proceeding heading, then followed it with the actual content from Amazon’s prohibited seller agreement. For anything else that gets a lot of questions, I’ve included additional details as a ‘Notes from Dave’. Amazon Terms of Service: Prohibited Seller Activities and Actions (TL:DR version) Introduction Amazon wants to protect both you and the buyers. Amazon can and will ban your product or your business for breaking the rules. Amazon can hold your payments if you break the rules. The prohibited activities and actions portion of the Amazon terms of service is in addition to all other parts of the Amazon terms of service. General Guidelines The seller prohibited activities and actions is for most products and services. Some products and services may have additional guidelines. Don’t try to send buyers away from Amazon. Don’t use business names that … Read More

The post Amazon Terms of Service: Prohibited Seller Activities Explained appeared first on Jungle Scout: Amazon Product Research Made Easy.


Why Content Marketing and Marketing Automation Go Hand in Hand

The goals of the modern marketer are timeless: create new opportunities to grow sales while keeping your existing customers happy and coming back for more. And content marketing plays a big role in this. When you provide information that is relevant, reliable, insightful, and actionable, you harness a proven, powerful method for reaching your customers, not to mention marketing goals. But trying to do it all manually is a daunting task that can easily keep you up at night.

To get the best results, your content marketing efforts need to run like a well-oiled machine so you can focus on the big picture, do your job better, and achieve more. Marketing automation helps you amplify your voice and speak to your audience with content that is relevant to them depending on each individual’s unique attributes and behaviors. Together, content marketing and marketing automation can help you create a cohesive, efficient, and effective engagement marketing powerhouse.

Here are three ways that content marketing and marketing automation go hand in hand:

1. Engage and Stay Top-of-Mind Across Channels

Marketing automation is not a one-and-done tactic. Rather, it orchestrates the use of multiple touchpoints (social media, email marketing, inbound marketing—as well as traditional sales efforts) to engage in continuous conversations with your buyers.

Before, during, and after the sale, marketing automation helps you easily engage across various channels, by connecting browsing habits to landing pages, email messages to website engagement, and social media usage to lifecycle nurturing efforts. Your marketing automation platform keeps track of every prospect and client, to deliver personalized content on every channel.

Each content campaign should, for example, interact with users on one channel, greet them at their stage of the buying cycle on the website, and continue the conversation on the next channel to nudge them farther along in the buying cycle.

Below are a few examples of how marketing automation and content marketing work together on different channels:

  • Social media—Your social media marketing content gives users a chance to interact with a campaign on their own turf. Marketing automation can help you learn about customers as they engage, so you can better understand which content nurtures relationships and drives sales.
  • Email—Email is still one of the most powerful channels for your content, and marketing automation can make sure those messages are always personalized and relevant.
  • Web—Your brand site is the hub for your content marketing, and marketing automation makes it more than just a library. Convert more anonymous visitors, deliver strategic pages to users you do know, and target visitors from certain accounts.
  • Mobile—Content is becoming more and more mobile, and marketing automation can make it more and more personalized as well. Create a seamless mobile experience and communicate with customers based on real-time location.

Marketing automation can track and monitor the content that each user views and engages with across every channel, so duplicates are never sent and each touchpoint advances the relationship.

2. Deliver Relevant, Personalized Content to Every Buyer

Buyer A is not at the same stage of the buying process as Buyer Z. Marketers must tailor content to buyers in every stage of the funnel, rather than blindly distributing content to the masses. Marketing automation nurtures specific customer personas with targeted, meaningful content that helps you turn prospects into customers and customers into fans.

If you’ve been trying to manually catalog all of your available content, marketing automation eliminates that task, and more, with several smart features:

  • Predictive content and analytics use AI, or machine learning, to automatically put the most relevant content in front of each prospect when he or she visits your site.
  • A/B testing delivers the best batch or triggered emails to each contact to help drive click-thrus and engagement.
  • A streamlined, synchronized database automatically updates your CRM in real time, based on online and offline customer behaviors.
  • Retargeting uses all of the data you collect on your audience to create more personalized, targeted ads on every popular ad platform, including Google, Facebook, and YouTube.
  • Web personalization collects behavioral insights on each visitor, even the anonymous ones.

Every prospect and customer has unique needs and preferences. A growing company can’t keep track of each relationship, but consumers increasingly expect to be treated like individuals.

Marketing automation is the secret weapon making sure that all the hard work you put into each piece of content doesn’t go to waste. Deliver the right content to the right user every time.

3. Garner Insights From All of Your Campaigns

Marketing automation is essential to executing any long-term marketing strategy, but which content is actually working? Are you drawing in qualified leads? Are your content marketing efforts actually driving sales? Can you accurately measure ROI?

Marketing automation provides the data to answer your questions and improve your processes, allowing you to:

  • Identify the most effective channels and campaigns with A/B testing and custom KPIs.
  • Easily view and share analytics by creating simple, custom reports featuring the data you need most.
  • Demonstrate how your content influences buyer behavior, and even tie revenue directly to particular campaigns, with revenue cycle analytics.

Marketing Automation Takes Content Marketing to the Next Level

Automation in any environment frees up time and ensures that the most important tasks stay on track, so nothing and no one falls through the cracks. The same is true for your content marketing strategy.

Marketing automation can help easily create and track content across every platform. It can deliver the right content to every user, so your hard work isn’t wasted and relationships are efficiently nurtured. And a good marketing automation system can report back on how your content is performing on every channel, in every situation. If you’re ready to take your content marketing to the next level, but you’re not sure where to start, check out our Marketing Automation Checklist to help you decide what you need.

In what other ways have you used marketing automation to improve your content marketing? Tell me about it in the comments. I’d love to hear about your experiences.

The post Why Content Marketing and Marketing Automation Go Hand in Hand appeared first on Marketo Marketing Blog – Best Practices and Thought Leadership.


Are People Watching Your Landing Page Videos? Here’s How to use Google Tag Manager to Check

In 2018, video marketing has become ubiquitous in news feeds and it’s one of the best tools for persuasion you have available to you. In fact, 72% of businesses say video has improved their conversion rates. Naturally, because your landing pages are designed to persuade and convert, it makes total sense you’d want to use videos to boost the power of your offer.

But how do you know if visitors are actually interacting with your landing page videos? If you’re spending money on producing video content (especially if it’s offer-specific), you’ll want to know if your target audience is engaging.

While some of you may have access to a video marketing platform and resulting analytics, this post is going to share how you can get view information for YouTube video players using the free tool Google Tag Manager.

Once you follow the steps below for your Unbounce pages, you’ll be able to see:

  • If visitors are actually watching the videos on your landing pages
  • The duration of how long visitors are watching for, and
  • Where visitors are dropping off (this can help you understand what content to modify to keep visitors engaged).

First up: Add Google Tag Manager to Track Your Landing Page Videos

This is really easy to do in Unbounce. First:

  1. Head to the Script Manager under your Settings tab.
  2. Then, click the green “Add a Script” button.
  3. Next, select the Google Tag Manager option.
  4. Assuming you’ve already signed up for Google Tag Manager, you can add your Container ID.

Set up of Google Tag Manager

Lastly, attach your domain to the script, and you’re all set!

Once you have the script saved, use Google Tag Assistant to confirm the tag is working. After setting up this Tag Manager, next we’ll want to define how we want to track user interactions with our YouTube embeds, which brings us to…

Create Tags to Track Video Engagement

On September 12, 2017, Google Tag Manager released the YouTube Video Trigger which finally gave marketers the opportunity to track engagement from embedded YouTube videos within Google Analytics. Tag Manager added built-in video variables, and we want to confirm they are selected before creating any tags or triggers.

When you get to the Variables page in Google Tag Manager:

  • click on the red Configure button, and simply check the boxes for all the video variables, as seen in the image below:

Configuring Built in Variables

Next, we can create our trigger. Triggers control how the tag will be fired. The only option we need is the YouTube Video trigger type.

From here you can select the specific information you want to capture. These actions include when a user starts a video, completes a video, pause/seeking/buffering, and the duration of how much of the content they actually watch.

See how people are engaging (or not) with landing page videos

In the image above, we see just one option of a trigger you can create. If you choose to select ‘Progress’, you have to choose either Percentages or Time Thresholds. It has to be one or the other. You can’t do both. Using Percentages, you can add any number you like (i.e. it doesn’t have to be the numbers I used in the example above). Tag Manager will automatically add 100 for a completion.

On the other hand, if you choose ‘Time thresholds’, you will add the numbers (in seconds) you’d like to have recorded in Google Analytics. If your campaign focus is on views, I’d stick with Percentages. But, if you want to see where users are dropping off to help you improve the content of your videos, Time Thresholds is a good choice.

Lastly, choose when the trigger will fire. By default Tag Manager will fire the trigger on all videos, but you can choose to fire on only some videos.

You can also make your video triggers a lot more specific. The image below shows several options you have to fire the tag on a variety of custom variables for your YouTube videos. If you only want to track videos on certain landing pages, you can do that, but if you only want to track certain videos no matter what the landing page is, you have that option too. Create the trigger which will give you the data you need to make better decisions about the videos on your landing pages.

Now let’s set up the tag!

The image below is just one example of a completed tag set up. Here, you can change the Category, Action, and Label to capture the appropriate video data you want to collect. You can also research and find some cool custom versions of these tags like Simo Ahava’s YouTube Video Trigger. There are many options out there, so find the tag which works best for you.

Now that we can track the YouTube video interactions, let’s view the data.

View the Events Report in Google Analytics

In Google Analytics, head over to Behavior > Events. In the Overview or Top Events sections, you can see the Event Category lists of whatever you are tracking. While Event Category is the default view, you can switch to Event Action or Event Label to get deeper data depending on how you set up your tag.

So, how do you relate YouTube video tracking with our landing pages? Easy. Click on Secondary dimension, search for “landing pages” and select it. From here you’ll be able to see the page URL path alongside the current view you have pulled up.

We now have the data in Google Analytics to view which videos users interact with the most, how long are users watching the embedded YouTube videos, and which landing pages are actually seeing video engagement.

Now You Have Data to Improve the Videos on Your Landing Pages

If you find visitors barely watch your videos (think viewing less than 30% of the content), you now have data to push your team to modify the length of the videos, for example, or get to your key message differently (perhaps you have a really long intro?).

If the data shows users aren’t watching your videos at all, you may want to replace the video on your landing page with other, more customized options, or even text that sums up the value props presented. Finally, if you identify really popular videos, it could be a great opportunity to determine if there are opportunities for reuse on other relevant pages, too.

Overall, you won’t know whether page visitors resonate with the videos on your landing pages unless you track this. Let me know in the comments below if you have any questions on the setup above – happy to jump in with answers.


5 Cartoons for the Fearless Marketer (+ Caption Contest!)

Tom Fishburne, known fondly as The Marketoonist, has spent 15 years chronicling the challenges, absurdity, and laughable moments in marketing through hundreds of cartoons. He’s used this creative outlet to expose the nonsense of jargon, reveal uncomfortable truths, and act as a voice of reason in the marketing industry.

Marketo is delighted to bring Tom on stage at the 2018 Marketing Nation Summit, where he’ll be sharing key strategies for transforming ideas into reality in his session, “Always in Beta: Overcoming Idea Killers.” Tom will also be signing copies of his book “Your Ad Ignored Here.”

(If you haven’t secured your Summit pass yet, do so ASAP!)

We’ve collected five Marketoonist cartoons that illustrate the role of The Fearless Marketer—our theme for 2018’s event.

1. Risk

Fearless marketing means taking risks and rising to the occasion. It means resolving to continually push the boundaries of what’s possible in marketing. Today, as seen in the cartoon below, it may be a bigger risk to change nothing at all…


Risk Tom Fishburne Marketoonist  

2. Innovation

A key part of being fearless in marketing is our ability to drive innovation throughout our teams. Are you guilty of one of the 7 deadly sins of innovation?

 7 Deadly Sins of Innovation Tom Fishburne Marketoonist

3. Brand Strength in a World of Voice

Amazon Alexa is here, and with it comes a new battleground for customer engagement. Only the fearless break through the noise. We love this illustration which begs the question—in a world of voice and “zero UI,” how strong is your brand?

The Future of E-Commerce Tom Fishburne Marketoonist

4. Focus

With so many tools, channels, and tactics competing for a share of our wallet, and our attention, it’s become critical to stay focused—fearlessly focused—on what truly impacts the business.

 Focus Tom Fishburne Marketoonist

5. It’s Your Turn!

Give us your best caption for the following cartoon. The winner will be announced at Summit live during Tom’s talk, and receive a signed and matted print of the cartoon with your winning caption.

Caption Contest Tom Fishburne Marketoonist

Submit your caption here before Friday, April 27th at 5:00pm.

Good luck, and see you at the Marketing Nation Summit!

The post 5 Cartoons for the Fearless Marketer (+ Caption Contest!) appeared first on Marketo Marketing Blog – Best Practices and Thought Leadership.