Tag Archives: virtual marketing empire

3 Strategies to Unlock YouTube’s Potential in 2015

The debate is officially over: YouTube is mainstream. With the allure of video and over a billion monthly users, the platform is where culture is born today. In 2014, YouTube officially became the second-largest search engine, with over 300 hours of content uploaded every minute, and those billion unique visitors watch more than six billion hours of video every month.

With the new year upon us, now is the time to reflect on personal and professional achievements. If you’re a marketer that has not yet embraced YouTube — it’s not too late. With a billion people watching, the necessity of a YouTube strategy for brands is clear. You can no longer afford (literally) to carry over yesterday’s media thinking into yet another new year. What are you waiting for?

Related: Ignore Video and Miss Out on 69 Percent of Mobile Traffic

Here are three resolutions to unlock the potential for your brand on YouTube in 2015:

1. Become familiar with the “new celebrities.”

There are a variety of ways to react to the fact that today’s average 18 year old considers PewDiePie a bigger star than today’s Hollywood A-listers. YouTube personalities are the new celebrities. They have personal relationships with their audiences on a scale the world has never seen, and are more open to aligning with your brand in both tried-and-true and never-been-done-before ways.

In 2015, get to know and partner with this new generation of celebrities. They are entrepreneurial, collaborative and they reach your audiences at the speed of culture.

2. Reimagine your digital content (it’s not just repurposing TV).

Now is the time to think about creating content made for YouTube first. Television is amazing, but it’s a shotgun approach to connecting with your audiences. Repurposing TV spots and putting them on YouTube is a start, but it leaves tremendous value on the table that your brand should be claiming.

ZEFR data shows that custom content produced exclusively for the platform results in more than double the daily views and channel subscriptions compared to repurposed content. More than double — there’s some inspiration.

Related: How YouTube Megastar Connor Franta Is Channeling His Eclectic Passions Into Entrepreneurial Gold

3. Make YouTube a priority spend, not an afterthought.

Hope is not a strategy. YouTube drives brand performance, but like all media platforms, the key is to take it on its own terms and plan early — not afterwards.

Recognized media innovator Bonin Bough, vice president of Mondelez, said it best on a panel discussion at AdWeek with me last year. During the discussion of “Video Today: Where Culture for Brands is Born,” Bonin argued for fully engaged commitment to the platform, even comparing it to the historic transition from radio to television.

“If I came in [your office] in the ‘50s and asked you to advertise on TV, you’d be like, ‘Get out of my office because radio is really amazing,’” he said.

For most brands, Bonin would be right.

However, the brands and innovators that saw the power of TV first grabbed a huge competitive advantage, and some of those early movers are reaping the benefits of those decisions to this day. As marketers in a connected, global, social world, we are faced with an opportunity of the same scale.

It’s 2015, so the question is, who will seize it?

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Make it a great day!


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Cloud market will become increasingly commoditized, says ClearSky Data: 2015 Tech Predictions

In 2015, the big cloud companies will make the cloud a battle of commodity economics that will force out the second-tier clouds, the commoditization of cloud services will provide the foundation for the vendors of next-generation, cloud-based technologies; and the split between legacy IT and the cloud will force spin-offs. This is all according to Lazarus Vekiarides, CTO and co-founder of ClearSky Data, an early-stage company (currently in stealth mode) building a breakthrough solution in enterprise infrastructure.

Vekiarides’s predictions about enterprise cloud are all part of our second annual Technology Predictions series in which industry experts share their predictions with us about the hot tech trends that they think will take center stage in 2015. We’ll be sharing all of their predictions with you over the next couple of days. Read on for more from Vekiarides.SiliconANGLE 2015 Predictions Enterprise Cloud graphic



2014 made it clear that public clouds are here to stay. We saw a seismic shift toward Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) offerings and 2015 will bring more of the same. Welcome to the new world of “Everything-as-a-Service.” What’s going to happen next depends on the priorities of every enterprise and where and how they want to manage their work loads. The companies that are creating solutions for these cloud-specific systems will find that the best way to win out in the enterprise is by finding ways to enhance teams and processes to drive innovation


Prediction No. 1: The big guys will make the cloud a battle of commodity economics that will force out the second-tier clouds

The biggest cloud players in the market— Amazon.com, Inc.’s Amazon Web Services, Microsoft’s Azure and Google’s Google Cloud platform—will continue to fight each other with price cuts and feature enhancements, which will leave the handful of cloud challengers with little on which to differentiate. These smaller cloud vendors won’t have the scale to compete on price nor the cash flow to fund the battle of attrition. Expect to see some clouds (especially those borne of legacy IT vendors) to quietly vanish into the ether as a result.


Prediction No. 2: Commoditization of cloud services will provide the foundation for the vendors of next-generation, cloud-based technologies

The struggle among Amazon Web ServicesAzure and Google Cloud will cause the cloud market to become increasingly commoditized. In 2015, new cloud-oriented technology companies will capitalize on the commodity cloud to better address the needs of the enterprise. They will take advantage of the infighting among the bigger players and focus on the more demanding needs of the higher-end customer. This innovation will take the form of applications, orchestration, security and high-value services such as disaster recovery (DR) and business continuity.


Prediction No. 3: The split between legacy IT and the cloud will force spin-offs

Traditional IT vendors are trying to adapt to their more agile, cloud-focused competitors and are having a hard time shedding their past legacy IT skin. These companies find themselves with outdated, bureaucratic structures and, as a result, will have no choice in 2015 but to spin off parts of their offerings in an attempt to make them more nimble, robust and profitable for shareholders.


Prediction No. 4: The Hybrid Internet will support more hybrid cloud deployments

In 2015, the rise of dark fiber and metro Ethernet will help bridge the gap between public and private infrastructure, allowing companies to more readily adopt on- and off-premises work loads.


Prediction No. 5: Managed service providers (MSPs) and co-location providers will flourish with hybrid IT offerings

The popularity of hybrid IT will feed the success of MSPs and co-location providers who will work with companies to provide hybrid IT offerings that leverage public cloud cost and accessibility with the benefits of on-premises control and oversight. Cloud will continue to make an enormous impact on enterprise infrastructure in 2015. The increases in accessibility and affordability will drive advances in innovation as technology providers learn to use the cloud for a new generation of services.


2015 Technology Predictions graphic courtesy of SiliconANGLE

How to Manage Your Business’s Online Reputation

You don't want to be running damage control.

You don’t want to be running damage control.

“A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person. You earn reputation by trying to do hard things well”—Jeff Bezos

The importance of online reputation management cannot be understated. Thanks to sites such as TripAdvisor, it’s easier than ever for customers to post their comments and criticism online. And, as many businesses have discovered, negative reviews can have a disastrous effect on revenue.

Even the courts are beginning to acknowledge the seriousness of online reputation damage. In July, French blogger Caroline Doudet was forced to pay a restaurant €1,500 in damages after posting a critical review on her blog.

Building a Reputation

The best way to build a solid online reputation is to solicit a large number of positive reviews. Unfortunately, as any business owner will tell you, there are no shortcuts. Only satisfied customers post good reviews—so you must strive to provide an excellent service.

However, this is just the first step. Negative reviews are always unsolicited, and are usually written by customers who want to vent their frustrations. In contrast, very few people will feel compelled to leave a positive review without first being prompted.

Business owners must ask customers for their comments. There are several ways to do this effectively:

  • The longer it’s been since their visit, the less likely your customers are to leave a review. Combat this by setting up a computer or tablet at your business, specifically for people to post their comments.
  • Companies which collect customer email addresses are at an advantage. For example, a hotel owner could email patrons after their stay, asking politely for a review.
  • Ask your customers for a review at the point of sale. You could print a friendly reminder on the receipt, or provide a separate card with the relevant information. Many businesses offer a small incentive in return for a review.
  • Ask your social media followers for a review. Be polite—you’re essentially asking for a personal favor.

Responding to Criticism

Even the best businesses can attract negative comments. However, by responding in a fair, polite, and apologetic manner, you can actually have a positive effect on your online reputation.

TripAdvisor reviews are often particularly scathing. The following excerpts were taken from a review of a small Indian restaurant:

“… the Chicken Tikka… was under-cooked to the extent that it was inedible. We took it home and re-cooked it and even then, it was clearly of an inferior quality…I prefer the…Tamarind or Gaylord…in London.”

The restaurant owner chose to respond with the ill-advised comments below:

As the old saying goes, “two wrongs don’t make a right.” However, a negative review of your business can feel like a personal attack, making it difficult to respond calmly and objectively.

Never respond immediately to a bad review. If necessary, physically move away from the computer. In the heat of the moment, it is tempting to send a fiery response. However, this can negatively impact your business’s reputation—particularly if the situation escalates.

A good response should be both brief and polite, and contain the following points:

  • A “thank you” for visiting your business, and a sincere apology for their disappointing experience.
  • A direct response to each of their complaints. These should be polite and honest – if you feel as though the criticisms are unfounded, diplomatically say so.
  • An explanation for the poor service. However, don’t use this as an opportunity to make excuses.
  • An invitation to return, with your compliments.

Generally, you should respond to every negative comment you receive. However, if you suspect you’re being trolled, don’t reply. If you feel you have been the subject of an unfair review on TripAdvisor, you can report it.

Monitoring Brand Mentions

All too often, companies don’t realize their online reputation has been damaged until they’ve suffered a drop in revenue. Negative reviews won’t just drop into your inbox—monitoring your own online brand mentions is absolutely essential.

Fortunately, there are a number of tools available to help you keep track. Google Alerts is perhaps the most popular, although Social Mention, Topsy, and Tweet Alarm are also useful. Each service will scan the internet for your chosen keywords, highlighting any new comments or reviews of your business.

Generally, all complaints should be dealt with in the same way, whether they are made online or in person. Remain courteous and polite, take a step back from the situation if you find yourself growing angry, and never bury your head in the sand. As in the real world, the best way to manage your online reputation ultimately is to provide an excellent service.

How does your business manage its online reputation? Do you use one of the tools mentioned above, or do you have another suggestion for other entrepreneurs? Tell us in the comments below!

Make it a great day,
Christina & Adele
Virtual Marketing Empire
Offer an home based business opportunity and need more exposure? CLICK HERE!!!

Dealing with the Risks of Starting a Home-Based Business

Boomers must deal upfront with risks involved in starting a home-based business!

Fear plays a big role in why many Baby Boomers are unwilling to start a home-based business. Fear of failure; fear of losing money; fear of the unknown. Does one have to be a risk taker to take the leap? Yes, but not to the degree you may think!

There is no way to avoid risk in life. No matter what activity we engage in, risk is involved. Anyone who drives a car runs the risk of having an accident. Skiing and other sports involve risk of injury. Even entering into marriage comes with risk (although it may not be recognized at the time). Everything we do in life includes risk of one form or another. We just fail to recognize it.

Do Not Ignore Risks!

In starting and operating a home business, however, we cannot afford to ignore risks. In fact, Boomers must diligently identify risks and derive plans for dealing with them. To do otherwise is a sure path to failure. Risks do not go away if we simply fail to see them or ignore possible consequences. This is true of any business.

Once the risks involved in launching a particular home business are identified, they can be investigated and prioritized. Then, you can see if there is a strategy for dealing with each. Yes, this requires more research, but that is what the Internet, friends and advisers are for. Tap into the world of existing knowledge and experience. It is likely that proven strategies for dealing with each risk already exist. Customize these strategies to suit your needs.

Self Examination is Critical

The next step, of course, is the difficult task of assessing your willingness to take a risk. Can you afford to lose the investment money necessary to get a home business going? Are you going to be able to sleep at nights, or will you be consumed by worry? How does your family feel about this?

At least now, you have facts to work with instead of vague unknowns. You know how other Boomers have overcome similar risks. Ask yourself, “Can I live with these risks? Do I have the skills and temperament to employ strategies that have worked for others?” Ultimately, it is a gut call. Don’t rush into this decision – get feedback and let it percolate for a while. And never proceed with nagging doubts.

This may not be the Best Home Business Idea for You

Not all home business ideas will work for you. Look inward and ask yourself, “Do I have the strength, skills and perseverance to do this?” If the answer is not an enthusiastic “Yes,” then continue your search for a home business better suited to your situation.

You are Not Alone!

Creating a home-based business requires honest self-examination. Granted, risk can never be eliminated. But fear diminishes when risks are identified and quantified. Confidence increases when one sees that others have successfully overcome similar risks. The real question is whether you can accept the risks involved and then push the “launch button” on a particular home business idea.

You are not alone. Baby Boomers by the thousands are going through this same process everyday.

Don’t Give Up!

Launching a home business is not a step to be taken lightly. Those who have honestly scrutinized the risks and concluded that they are acceptable have the best chance of success. At minimum, these Boomers will certainly avoid nasty surprises down the road.

If a current home business idea turns out to be too risky for you, don’t give up. Keep searching for a candidate that fits your profile and needs. Boomers everywhere have survived this journey and ultimately created rewarding home-based businesses. You can too. Don’t give up!

Make it a great day!

Christina & Adele

Virtual Marketing Empire

Do you offer a home based business opportunity and need more exposure? Click here!

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The Growing Popularity Of Internet Advertising

web advertisingInternet advertising is the newest great idea making a big splash and helping several people like you make millions! Try promoting what you have online and let the financial rewards start flowing in. There are those individuals who merely advertise and there those who wishes to advertise in order to gain.

The trick here is to know how to advertise for maximum gain and better results. So if you’re wondering how to advertise better, then there’s nothing better than optimizing the World Wide Web to pursue and reach out to one’s target market. Why Online Internet Advertising—-Why Not? Well, other people need to purchase stuff, and you need to sell it, it’s that simple.

Like in a market or a store, you display what you offer or your products to sell then wait for potential buyers. With online promotion, you get to display to millions of consumers just at one go. Take note that there are just too many out there who are searching and browsing for just what you have for them.

Does This Work– Of course! Internet is a medium that is vast and ever expanding and the reason for its growing popularity is the impact and power of its incredible results. Be it brand building or direct marketing, internet advertising is modifying all the rules of effective promotion for any service or products offered.

With more and still more people joining in the fray, internet promoting is stretching into the largest piece of the advertising cake. How Could Internet Advertising Help? To reach out to potential online clients or customers, you just require a little assistance from certain professionals. Here comes the tech-savvy and friendly online neighborhood guru the Internet advertising company.

Online promotion is all about reach and an Internet consultant in advertising sure knows how to reach a target with effective online promotional plan. With a host of promotional services in the Internet, these companies could aid in reaching out to wide and more focused consumers and buyers. These online services extend from mail campaigns, data mining to customized solutions that work for you.

Is Internet Advertising Costly? You might be surprised not at all! The good thing about this lies in the fact that it’s one of the least expensive ways in reaching out to clients! What even makes this type of innovation more appealing is that it is so effective. Effective online advertising has created tons and tons of millionaire’s success stories and the best thing about it? Well, yours can be one of them–that’s the powerful strength of the Internet working to your advantage’s reasonable, accessible and absolutely popular! Selecting the Right Internet Advertising.

Choosing the right online advertising is an art which contains compelling content, effective insight and a lot of common sense. Different businesses require different necessities and a track record of a company could go a long way in coming up with the right choice. With various online advertising agencies utilizing more tools in this kind of innovation, there’s only one way your business could go up, to online success!

Make it a great day!!!

Do you offer a home based business opportunity?

Get more exposure here!

Christina & Adele

Virtual Marketing Empire

Sneaky Secrets And Tips For Marketing Products And Services Online

Website marketing is the future of advertising, because it’s already a firmly established market that is here to stay. These tips can help you earn more profits.  

Internet marketing involves using available software and modern technology. Do not let your company fall behind with these technological advances; customers may get a negative perception of your company if you cannot keep up. Make sure that you are updated on new technologies, and your customers will respect your products and the decisions that you make.

You can improve your site’s PageRank through short-term promotions. You can also “buy” PageRank by getting deal sites and consumer news sites to link to your page. This is the same thing as selling something as a loss and making money off of it later.

Always think about different ways to advertise and market your website. You can use social networking, blog posts and even posters in area businesses to help advertise your site for little or no cost. There are a number of methods that you can use to attract visitors to your site. You just have to be creative.

The tag on your site can, and should, define you. The title of your website can determine how your customers perceive your business’s website. If your message is unclear or unappealing you will lose potential customers before they even view body of your site.

Find something that can serve as your niche and will give your site a unique quality. This will be great at driving lots of traffic towards your site when people go searching for this product. The increased visitor numbers not only get more eyes on your products, they also add legitimacy, which will increase your page ranking.

Create a FAQ section on your site in order to improve customer satisfaction. This will give your visitors immediate answers to their questions, which will make them more pleased with your site. The more your client will benefit, the greater the chances that they will complete a purchase for the things you offer.

Use captions under images. Search engines use captions to help determine if a site is relevant to a user’s search. Simply using keywords in the captions of all the images on your website will increase your ranking.

A good way to put yourself out there on the Internet is to try video marketing strategies. Use keywords in the descriptions and captions to increase the visibility of your website. A unique interesting title and picture is a good attention grabber for new clients.

Some webmasters forget that simplicity is best when it comes to website design. Most of the flashy tools like Microsoft Silverlight or Adobe Flash will be tempting, and also tend to be pushed by website designers. Good web designers consider that some visitors to their site will not have the most up to date technology. Functionality and readability are the most important elements of any website.

Providing proof to back up claims is very important. Offer concrete evidence; create videos of yourself demonstrating your products or the skills necessary to providing the services you offer for instance. This is a great illustration of why you should sell products you have actually used whenever possible.

A clean, easy format makes it easier for links to be seen. This will make it simpler for visitors to find the information they are seeking. If you have the links hidden or obscured, then people will not find them easily.

An important tip regarding Website marketing is to try to adjust your content and delivery of content in a way so that your customers get the impression that they are completely in control. This helps keep them away from spam. Let them know they have the option to participate and they will think more of you and your company.

Reward those that are frequent buyers. It is helpful in customer retention, and the appearance of generosity is positive for your company. People will talk to their friends about the promotional offers and gift cards you have been sending them.

The key to any Online marketing campaign is knowing what works and doesn’t work for your competition. If you have strong competitive intelligence, you can blow your competitors out of the water by changing your services to compete with them. To be successful in Affiliate marketing, this is essential.

Use high-quality images that give visitors a good idea of what kind of products you are selling. It is very useful for potential buyers to see your product in as much detail as possible, as this helps them to decide if they will place an order or not. Having a section where customers can upload their own photos of products is another great idea. Another effective way of using graphics is to show “before and after” images.

Submit the freebies on your website to free directories to get the word out. If you’re submitting an e-zine for free, submit it to different directories that cater to free e-zines. There are many resources to get free e-zines, e-books and other free infomation.

Interviews from people high up in your industry can hold a lot of value. Ensure that you have the appropriate permissions prior to publishing the interviews, however, to avoid any legal repercussions. You can also turn your interviews into articles that can be submitted to E-zine directories. This will help drive traffic and sales to your site as well as boost your credibility.

Allowing users to put reviews on your website is an excellent Website marketing tool. Customer reviews can be very influential to prospective customers.

Try to regard Internet promotion as being a hobby rather than a job, particularly when you are just getting started. Do this for fun until the time comes when you know you can actually make a career out of it.

As you have learned, increasing your knowledge on Internet marketing can really take you far. Now that you have learned some new insights into this area, you are hopefully already having new visions and ideas to apply to your own online marketing efforts. Do not forget the advice here, and enjoy the rewards of your efforts.

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Thank you for reading this article!

Make it a great day!

Christina & Adele

Virtual Marketing Empire

Offer a home based business opportunity? Click here to get more exposure!

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