Qwest marketing mistake

29 05 2009

Qwest hung beautiful four color door hangers on my street recently, encouraging us to sign-up for their high-speed Internet service. I’m debating switching providers, so I call the toll free number. Apparently our block does not have access to their high speed network.

Power of LinkedIn: Real Life Example

15 05 2009

One of my LinkedIn groups is the Portland Radio Council. Paul Allen recently sold two local Portland radio stations to Larry Wilson, an industry icon. Mr. Wilson sold his radio empire Citadel Broadcasting in 2006 for over 2 billion dollars (selling high). Now he is reentering the business at the height of the recession (buying low), with plans to grow.

The Oregonian, our local daily rag in Portland, wrote a reasonable article about the transaction and reemergence of Larry Wilson into broadcast. I posted a response on LinkedIn voicing my disapproval of the radio industry rock stars messaging: there was no mention of radio’s unlimited digital opportunities for growth.

Within 24 hours I get a personal response from the decision makers, defending their new boss. With a couple emails back and forth, soon I received and invitation to meet. Maybe this leads to a partnership between Formic and Larry Wilson’s highly financed, growing broadcast company?

My message Wilson’s group is simple: traditional media creates awareness and demand, and search engine marketing is the catcher’s mitten for the prospects created by radio, television, direct mail and outdoor advertising. Integrate of loose.

The message to Formic blog readers is that social media is a powerful tool for business to business sales.

It’s not Paper Clip, IT IS PAY-PER-CLICK!

13 05 2009

This blog entry is dedicated to a discussion we had in our daily stand up (a whole other process we may explain to you someday…) where “someone who shall not be named” got confused and thought that we were suggesting a Paper-Clip strategy.  “We have Staples, why would we need anything else? 

<hit your easy button now to get a clue on PPC>

 So why should you bother using PPC as part of a larger SEM strategy or perhaps just a standalone campaign to drive more traffic?  PPC gives you the opportunity to reach a greater number of people and place your branding message in front of users more quickly.  It’s quick and easy to set up, and unlike a direct mail marketing campaign or other types of marketing campaigns that are time intensive to plan and move forward with.  Unlike direct marketing campaigns, you see results immediately and it’s measurable.  You can test keywords and ad variations to see if they are effective or not (and revise from there), and it’s easy to tweak the campaign on a regular basis to achieve optimal results and improve performance on an ongoing basis. 

The “set it and forget it” misconception.  No, you can’t.  It needs to be reviewed at a minimum at least once or twice a week to ensure that the campaign is running on budget and keywords and ad variations are being analyzed for performance.  Once reviewed, revisions can be immediately made to the campaign.  If you can’t review your account at least twice a week, you should consider hiring someone to manage the account for you. 

The “I rank high in organic so I don’t need PPC” misconception.  We disagree.  A mix of paid and organic will keep your brand visible, and we all know it takes more than just one or two times for a brand to resonate with a consumer.  We believe that PPC and SEO go hand in hand and can help support your overall marketing efforts.  If you infiltrate your brand through paid and organic means, your brand and message will be served more frequently to searchers and help them remember you.  While some searchers may not click on your ad, you are still generating valuable branding presence – for FREE.  Additionally, approximately 30% of searchers prefer to click on paid listings versus organic listings.  If you are not showing up in the paid results, you are missing out on a bunch of traffic because some web users will never take the opportunity to visit your site.

There are obviously more PPC misconceptions out there, but addressing the top two that we hear on a consistent basis, we hope gets you thinking about the benefits of a PPC campaign.

Online Marketing Dollars Increase

6 05 2009

In the past few posts we’ve talked about how small business can use  online marketing strategies to maximize their marketing dollars.  We bumped into this article from eMarketer and wanted to pass it on.  It shows how large and small businesses have moved and increased funding of their online marketing budgets.


Where does your online marketing plans take you?  Increasing your budget to get greater visibility and more bang for your buck?

Viral Marketing to Drive More Clicks

1 05 2009

Nowadays, many small businesses are using online marketing techniques – so let’s hone in on viral marketing – to drive more traffic to their website.

What is viral marketing?  Well, in short viral marketing can be defined as “A marketing technique aiming at reproducing “word of mouth”, usually on the internet or by e-mail, for humorous, political or marketing purposes.”  Or at least, that’s a definition defined by Google.

So, in your small business is it possible, or worth your time, to understand and create a viral marketing campaign?  We say yes.  In our mind, it is one of the easiest and most powerful methods of getting customers, if done correctly. You can make it as simple or as complex as your time and marketing budget can handle.

Usually, viral marketing works by utilizing social networks to promote your products and services. Email, blogging, articles, video clips, Flash games and newsletters are some of the most widely used viral marketing media on the Internet. Content distribution offers a cost-effective way to spread your business message throughout the Internet. These articles will attract links from other websites, which encourages more and more readers to visit your site. 

Curious about how to market virally?  We’ve collected a few links here to get you some ideas on how to get started:






Still confused?  then give us a call and we can help you get set up – and start spreading your word to get more clicks.

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