How to Integrate Email Marketing, SEO and Social Media

by Eric Tsai

Social media is changing how businesses find customers and how customers engage with brands. There are many reasons to believe that it will eventually overtake email marketing, but I’m a firm believer that it’s here to stay.

In fact, I believe email marketing combine with search (SEO) and social media will the best strategy moving forward.

However; let me get a few things straight. First, email is the original social network. Second, you need email to open social network account and get alerts.

And third, search engines (Google, Yahoo, Bing) will continue to index and aggregate social network data not to mention most social network has their own internal search engine as well.

It sounds like there is a lot of cross-over between the three, so how should you use these three tactics to help you strategize your marketing efforts?

It’s hard to realize how these tactics can impact your business without some basic understanding of the big three. Let’s look at how each works and what you can do to get the most bang for your marketing bucks.
The Big Three #1 –

3 Keys to Build Your Online Community

by Eric Tsai


There has been a few interesting development recently on the social web specifically with Facebook replacing the ‘become a fan’ phrase with a ‘Like button’ and launching ‘Community Pages’; expect all mainstream websites to gradually adopt the like button enabling visitors to see if their friends or family like the content (peer influence) as well as the number of people liking something.

The other news is Twitter’s new tool that allows tweets to be directly embedded on third-party sites, making it easier to quote and share content .

This growing trend of the web becoming social will continue to encourage people to use it social.

The more social the web gets, the more conversations it generates resulting in a permanent record of everything and anything people talk about, including your brand. Even if you’re not online or don’t have an online business, internet will continue to record down what people say about your brand.

And reputation is word-of-mouth thus it will only benefit your business if you include your community in defining your brand. So how can brands take control of

Why Social Media Can Improve Your Business

by Eric Tsai

Facebook_Twitter_consumerAfter my last post on “How to use Google and Twitter to Find your Customers,” I’m following up on how to abstract value to improve your ideas.

Whether it’s for your marketing research or product innovation, the intention for gathering these data should NEVER be for spamming but to help integrate your value proposition into what people are truly interested in.

If you can become part of what people are interested in, you will have a better chance of connecting. Therefore it’s best to utilize permission marketing when executing your communication strategy.

Getting more data is great, but it’s not intended so you can just add more people to your weekly email blast.

Making quantitative analysis can help you create interesting ideas that differentiate your brand and drive actions.

So how can social media create opportunities for you?
Understand The Social Network Ecosystem
First, learn how each social network ecosystem works and the habits of the emerging “social consumers.”

Think of each social network as a town and the ecosystem is basically the infrastructure of the town.

Knowing how each social network is used is like having the

How to Find Customers Online Using Google and Twitter

by Eric Tsai

sample social media metricThe three most important elements when starting out with marketing on the internet is to 1) define success and 2) know your target audience 3) listen to your customers.

Once you form a foundation for your web strategy, the execution becomes easy. The goal is to constantly test and use different campaigns from Search Engine Optimization (SEO) to email marketing in an attempt to achieve business objectives.

I often hear business owners talk about wanting to increase sales and generate leads but fail to define what success look like to them. In order to define success, you must first realize your current state of business from an analytical and financial perspective.

Do you have any existing data to help you take the pulse of the business? What kind of financial (Return on Investment or ROI) and non-financial (business impact) objectives and metrics are available?

Without real knowledge of your true costs, you run into a potential misconception of what your real ROI is.

Understand that ROI includes not just how much you pay for web hosting or your overheads, but also other costs associated

How To Keep Customers Coming Back: 6 Trends You Should Know

by Eric Tsai


Living in southern California I love going to restaurants, cafes and retails stores to experience what companies are doing to attract customers.

From merchandising to customer service, I’m gradually seeing three popular marketing trends that everyone is doing to spread their brand voice.

First, almost every company is in on the social media bandwagon specifically leveraging Facebook and Twitter to engage with their fans and broadcast their offerings.

Second, companies are finding ways to collect your contact information to build their email list by offering discounts, coupons or customer loyalty programs.

And third, businesses are aware of their reputation online on places such as Yelp, Consumer Reports, OpenTable, BizRate,  Amazon and CNET.

Some of using these information as a way to improve products and identify service gaps.

All three marketing tactics are proven to be somewhat cost-effective in terms of managing their reputations online while funneling leads and converting sales.

There is enough free information out there that business owners and marketing managers can find to start immediately so I’m not surprise that everyone is doing it.

In fact, I always check out the Twitter or Facebook

Reputation Management Using Social Media

by Eric Tsai

Recently I purchased a new vehicle and was excited about the whole experience. I’ve had many cars in the past and the part that always annoys me is feeling the pressure to buy from the sales people on the floor.

But this one is different.

It was like two friends talking about cars and with no initiation about buying. She wasn’t worry about selling.

Obviously I purchased the car and about 3 weeks later I had to go in for some service and again the experience was painless and I even got a loaner car to drive for a few days.

I was so thrilled that I wanted to endorse them by leaving reviews on their social network profile. Then I discovered a string of negative reviews online and what’s worse is that they received an average of 2 out of 5 stars on multiple websites.

So I called the sales person that sold me the car and she said she will help me pass it to her corporate marketing executive. Below is a slightly altered version to keep both the dealership

Customer Experience: Do You Really Know Your Audience?

by Eric Tsai

It’s no surprise that the increasingly social web have enabled customers to be heard while helping to improve the very products and services they’ve purchased.

As millions of people continue to search online for the product they need and the service they want, do you know how the recession has impacted your customer’s value perception?

How are you going to improve the customer experience to optimize your products and services?

Your customer may have already shifted their spending in favor of private label brands over name brands or reduce the quantity or frequency of buying altogether.

Perhaps the freemium business model has become the new standard to get your customer to try your product.

Whichever way you look at it, consumer’s perceptions of an interaction are influenced heavily from their purchasing experience, by how they research to who they trust.

To understand and improve customer experience, companies should first research their customer’s natural behaviors, and then seek opportunities to influence those behaviors through targeted strategies and niche offers.

According to a recent Nielsen analysis revealed generationally shopping habits that reflect diverse lifestyle preferences and economic habits.

Naturally,

How Augmented Reality Affects Marketing

by Eric Tsai

I received some feedback and questions on Augmented Reality (AR) after my last post and thought to provide some additional inspiring ideas with regards to where AR is heading. The best example can be seen from Yelp’s Monocle app that allows users to see location-based reviews from their iPhone screens.

The result is crowd sourced commerce with social proof data to enhance purchasing decisions on the spot. It’s an integration of social media with physical space to bring relevant information based of our physical behaviors such as the places we’ve visit or the reviews we’ve posted online.

This new technology integrates real-time social networks, location-based tracking, and the semantic web to aggregate qualitative data. Information you want will run towards you instead of the other way around, fully customized to your personal taste based on your friends, location, and how you search online. The cultural ramifications represents a step forward towards artificial intelligence.

As for marketers, it’s important to monitor how consumers and businesses interact with AR technology that creates deeper and more meaningful engagements which may lead to new marketing opportunities.

5 Ways to Engage Social and Mobile Customers

by Eric Tsai

If you’ve been keeping up with the current marketing trends, you should be in the process of exploring how to utilize social media to benefit your business.

By now, most of the “how to use” social media content is everywhere especially from reputation resources such as Mashable, Social Media Examiner or Twitip to name a few.

While most large organizations such as Fortune 500 companies are slow in adopting social media, many have started pilot programs to experiment with this new tool.  Brands such as Dell, Coke Cola, Ford, Starbucks, Zappos, Best Buy and even sports league like NBA and NFL have found rapid growth by allowing fans to engage directly with athletes.

Share content that people find useful and want to share with others is the new mantra for new media marketing.

Particularly small businesses have found social media as a way to demonstrate leadership and command influence in niche communities.

The latest data from the Small Business Success Index shows that “Social media adoption by small businesses doubled from 12% in 2008 to 24% in 2009. The biggest expectation small business owners