Vol. 3 , No. 31     August 10, 2004


In this Newsletter:

  1. Unlocking Google’s Hidden Potential as a Research Tool (Part 2 of 5)
  2. A New Perspective on Marketing to Women
  3. Q&A: Six Ways to Improve Your Web Site Conversion Rate (Part 1 of 3)
  4. The Second Reason Why Customers Don’t Buy
  5. SWOT Team: Overcoming the Pricing Battle
  6. Localize Your Presentation for a Global Audience
  7. Anticipating Customer Behavior With Analytics


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Stephan Spencer
Unlocking Google’s Hidden Potential as a Research Tool (Part 2 of 5)

If you’re like most of us, you use Google almost daily as a search tool. But Google is capable of so much more than simple search. You’d be surprised at what Google can do to make your work life more productive and easier on any number of levels.

In the first installment of this article series, you learned a number of ways to better refine your Google searches. Here, in Part 2, you'll learn 20 time-saving search operators.

For example, imagine how much easier it would be to quickly locate a great marketing plan if you knew how to specifically zero in just on Word documents that have the phrase “marketing plan” in the document title.

Get the full story.

Please note: This article is available only to paid subscribers. Learn more or sign up here.


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Andrea Learned
A New Perspective on Marketing to Women

Isn’t marketing to women just good marketing? So why are so many companies missing the boat?

In her new book, Andrea proposes that "transparent marketing" is the future of our industry. Using this approach to reach women, in particular, can be an incredibly powerful tool for increasing sales and building loyalty.

Just what is transparent marketing?

Get the full story.

Steve Jackson
Q&A: Six Ways to Improve Your Web Site Conversion Rate (Part 1 of 3)

What qualifies as a conversion? Is "conversion" simply enticing someone to answer the simplest call to action such as “read more here,” or is it actually selling a product or service?

What strategies can you use when there is no online conversion possible? And what if the product that you sell is also sold by several other companies?

This first piece in a three-part series answers these and other specific queries about how to improve Web site conversion rates.

Get the full story.


A Note to Readers

Of Context and Content

Greetings, discerning readers.

The “contextual advertising” model has been gathering steam lately, with contextual links becoming commonplace underneath, and adjacent or contiguous to, many kinds of content—from search engine listings to articles in major daily newspapers.

Some links are relevant and useful, some are decidedly not. Last week, for example, I read a Boston Globe columnist’s write-up of David Foster Wallace’s sharply critical look at the Maine Lobsterfest from the perspective of the roiling, thrashing lobster in the pot (he called such torture “medieval”).

Meanwhile, beneath the article were contextual links for order-online clambakes and lobsters shipped anywhere. Ironic? Sure. Good advertising? You decide.

Ever since I’ve worked in online publishing, some advertisers have been chomping at the bit to go one step beyond links and banner ads that run outside the text, and actually embed their advertising within the content on the page. And some trade publications and message boards have done just that.

But I was a little surprised last week when I heard that Forbes.com was using VibrantMedia technology in its content. Place your cursor over certain words in some Forbes articles, and a small ad box pops up; click on it, and it takes you to the advertiser’s landing page.

I’m no editorial prude. I love our advertisers (group hug!) and I enjoy working with them. I’ve written about the “dance” between editorial and advertising several times. I think that editorial and advertising can afford some level of intimacy—provided that the people in charge maintain a respect for healthy boundaries.

But the Forbes example seems to me to crash that boundary with an M1 Abrams battle tank. In my view, advertising tied so tightly to content violates editorial ethics and threatens the integrity of the publication.

What do you think? As always, your feedback is both welcome and encouraged.

Until next week,

Ann Handley


Last Issue's Top 5

  1. Unlocking Google’s Hidden Potential (Part 1 of 5)
  2. True Colors: Using Color to Build Your Brand
  3. How to Guarantee Product Failure
  4. Getting Reporters to Open Your Emails
  5. Moving Toward Branding Systems
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Recent Know-How Exchange Questions/Answers

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  3. Where Can I Look For Contract Marketing Writers - Preferably In Canada?
  4. Looking For an Irreverant Angle On Banners Ads For a New Product
  5. How Much Should a Photographer Receive For His/her Work?


Sean D’Souza
The Second Reason Why Customers Don’t Buy

Is persuasion in marketing all that it takes to convince a customer to buy?

If that were the case, customers who were swayed by your logic would snap up your goods and services instantly. Yet a persuasive marketing strategy is clearly not enough.

As a marketer, you must understand this powerful psychological trigger or you'll be leaving behind chunks of almost-guaranteed profits.

So what's the secret of the second reason why customers don’t buy?

Get the full story.

Meryl K. Evans and Hank Stroll
SWOT Team: Overcoming the Pricing Battle

This week, weigh in with own two cents to the dilemma: How can a lesser-known company overcome the pricing battle? Join the conversation!

Also this week, read your answers to: What are your definitions of these key marketing phrases?

Get the full story.


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Joseph Sommerville
Localize Your Presentation for a Global Audience

In addition to the careful preparation required for any presentation, those for an international audience demand extra attention.

In other words: When in Rome, you should definitely do as the Romans do. The goal is to localize.

Here are five key areas to pay attention to.

Get the full story.

Colin Shearer
Anticipating Customer Behavior With Analytics

Know thy customer and give them what they want is the fundamental principle of marketing.

This principle is simple in theory, but increasingly challenging to put into practice. Short of having a crystal ball, it’s difficult for marketers to know what’s on a customer’s mind today, or anticipate what the customer may need or want tomorrow.

The challenge, however, doesn’t stem from lack of customer data.

Get the full story.


Publisher:Allen Weiss

Content: Ann Handley


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