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Vol. 5 , No. 10     March 7, 2006


In this Newsletter:

  1. Making the Most out of Google as a Research Tool (Part 2 of 2)
  2. How to Test Your Competitive Market Strategy
  3. SEO Copywriting: Does 'Search Friendly' Mean 'Human Readable'?
  4. Is Your Cost-per-Click Advertising Actually Profitable?
  5. Take This Quiz: Is Your CEO Really Committed to Customers?
  6. Three Business and Marketing Lessons From the Olympics
  7. The 80/20 Volume Paradox


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Premium Content

Stephan Spencer
Making the Most out of Google as a Research Tool (Part 2 of 2)

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 fact, were you to master Google's powerful search refinement operators and lesser-known features, you could save lots of time scouring irrelevant results. Even more enticing is the promise of elusive nuggets of market research and competitive intelligence out there, waiting to be discovered. Last week we learned about some great free services courtesy of search engine powerhouse Google. Now, in this second and final installment, we'll dig into a dozen more Google services and tools.

Get the full story.

For in-depth coverage of this subject, please also see our new Marketing Guide: Using Google as a Research Tool. Click this button to download the 27-page PDF.

Note: This article and the Marketing Guide are available to paid members only. Get more information or sign up here.


What's the Secret to Email & Web Analytics Integration?
Industry experts urge marketers to integrate customer data across platforms in order to craft more meaningful messages. But the enormity of the task prevents most from even starting. Get Silverpop's new white paper for five simple tactics, and learn why there's never been a better time than now.

Michael L. Perla
How to Test Your Competitive Market Strategy

The corporate graveyard is full of onetime leading businesses that lost their competitive edge by failing to keep current on their competitors. Think of the classic story of Digital Equipment Corporation, with its once technical superiority turning into organizational chaos, or the various bloated airlines, with cost structures and business models that were vulnerable to competition long before 9/11. Here's a test of your own organization's competitive market strategy.

Get the full story.

For a hands-on resource to help you assess your competitors, please also see our new Marketing Template: Competitive Analysis. Click this button to download the 20-page PDF.

Note: This Marketing Template is available to paid members only. Get more information or sign up here.

Dan Skeen
SEO Copywriting: Does 'Search Friendly' Mean 'Human Readable'?

The aggressive drive to be the number-one search result in Google continues to change the nature of communication.

No one is feeling that more than today's copywriters. In less than a decade, many copywriters have fundamentally changed, or felt pressured to change, their approach to the craft. They have learned that some traditional communications tactics don't register well with a greasy machine named Googlebot.

Get the full story.

For a snapshot of what your peers are thinking about SEO, please also see our Benchmark Survey Results for Search Engine Optimization. Click this button to view and filter the data.

Note: These Benchmark Survey Results are available to paid members only. Get more information or sign up here.


A Note to Readers

New Times Indeed

My son is in the market for a pocket watch. This morning, before school, he was bemoaning that he can't find exactly what he's looking for. Without really thinking about it—it was 6:30 a.m., and I was slathering peanut butter on toast—I suggested we try a few local stores sometime during the week.

Evan's response: "I don't want to go to a store, Mom."

He emphasized the word "store," but he would have been more accurate if he'd emphasized "go." His idea of shopping is to surf online, not to drive from mall to mall. Either way, his words fell on me like a big pile of DUH. Which brings me to the 4As...

Last week, the American Association of Advertising Agencies held its annual convention in Orlando. A recurring theme was how the ad industry and media must increasingly cater to consumers empowered by technology and proliferating content choices, according to The New York Times via MarketingVOX. The hundreds of media and ad execs who had gathered in Florida spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to most effectively deliver their messages at a time of momentous shifts in media and those who consume it.

It's an interesting question. Tomorrow's consumer mainstream—today's teenagers and young adults—have a seriously cozy comfort level with technology and an expectation of how it can be manipulated to meet their needs. For example, colleges are responding by moving all sorts of student services online—from snack delivery to faculty advising—according to Campus Technology, again via VOX.

(Here's an example: Columbia University students can monitor campus washers and dryers via the internet, pay for the wash via their campus debit cards, and have an email sent to their computer when their laundry is done or when a machine becomes available. Seriously. How cool is that?)

The bottom line is this: Marketing and advertising are changing—because of not only how their messages can be delivered but also how the individuals those messages are intended to reach are themselves changing. It's more critical than ever to really know and understand your audience—and get their input whenever possible.

Speaking of which, this week MarketingProfs rolls out a new product line that you, dear readers, requested: our new Marketing Templates. Our first one, introduced today, is the Competitive Analysis Template, but it should be called Competitive Intelligence, as it offers a road map to many marketing plans and processes, like pricing, positioning, and product definition.

As always, you can also access all of our premium content, including podcasts, marketing guides, templates, benchmark surveys and premium articles in the Premium Library.

And, as always, your feedback is welcome and encouraged.

Until next week,

Ann Handley
Chief Content Officer


Last Issue's Top 5

  1. Making the Most out of Google as a Research Tool (Part 1 of 2)
  2. The New Rules of PR
  3. How to Manage and Measure the Word of Mouth Revolution
  4. How to Write an Effective Survey Questionnaire (Part 1)
  5. B2B Marketing on Search Engines—A Largely Untapped Resource
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Glen Hamilton
Is Your Cost-per-Click Advertising Actually Profitable?

Shopping portals, comparison-shopping sites, and search engines allow merchants to promote increasingly detailed merchandising offers with the goal of cost-effectively increasing brand visibility, acquiring new customers, and driving incremental revenues.

But how does an online retail merchant ensure that third-party shopping destinations and other referral-based merchandising channels contribute to the bottom line?

Get the full story.

Want a crash course in this topic? Attend this week's virtual seminars: Essentials of Paid Search Marketing and Advanced Topics in Paid Search Marketing. Click this button to learn more.

Note: All our seminars are included in the price of a Premium Plus Membership. Get more information or sign up here.

Jeanne Bliss
Take This Quiz: Is Your CEO Really Committed to Customers?

We've never seen a CEO who wouldn't sign up for customer loyalty, customer focus, and just plain improving things for their customers. It's getting them to drive the company to do something about it that's the challenge.

A number of telltale signs determine pretty quickly whether a company is serious about the job or not—beginning with the CEO and leadership and cascading all the way through the ranks of the company.

Get the full story.


Best Practices for Software Demos: Free Webcast

Software demonstrations aren't known for their entertainment value, but they don't have to be boring. Join us for a 30-minute webcast to learn how to turn your dull demonstration into a winner. You’ll learn how to engage and capture your audience in the first 6 minutes.
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Elaine Fogel
Three Business and Marketing Lessons From the Olympics

The Olympic flame has been temporarily extinguished, the athletes have gone home, and the sidewalks of Turin are quiet again. As we look back at the highs and lows of the winter games, there are three definitive business and marketing lessons to be learned.

Get the full story.

Geoff Dillon
The 80/20 Volume Paradox

Here's why tapping your top-volume clients for further growth doesn't always work. The truth is: you need to cast a wider net.

Get the full story.


Publisher:Allen Weiss

Content: Ann Handley

Strategy and Development:
Roy Young

Director of Premium Services
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