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Back-to-school time is . . . here?

The kids are barely out of school for the summer which means its time to start planning your back-to-school campaigns.

Facebook says that back-to-school chatter begins in July, so that gives you about a month and a half to put together a strategic plan. Here are some facts that might help:

Back to School

Side note: no insult intended to the young model in the red shirt but there’s something very menacing about this image. . don’t you think? Pigtail girl is texting with her friend on the back of the buss while red shirt pretends to be a part of her life by voyeuristicly reading over her shoulder. . .

Back to the facts:

On Facebook in the US,

Yahoo goes all in on mobile ads while Instagram and Pinterest take a slow but steady approach

Yahoo adsYahoo is rushing headlong into the advertising fray with a bold, new look on mobile. Instead of trying for unobtrusive ads that won’t disrupt the viewing experience, Yahoo is going with large, image-rich ads that lead to great content. In a funny way, these native ads are hiding in plain sight because they blend in to their surroundings in a good way. They look like content and though they’re clearly marked as sponsored ads, many people won’t notice or care.

Good content is good content, after all, so does it really matter if Netflix sponsored the behind the scenes look at Orange is the New Black? No!

Here’s where I was going to say that this format is great for entertainment stories but won’t work for. . . . (fill in blank) stories – but honestly, I couldn’t think of a good argument against.

Multi-channel marketing leads to increased engagement for SMBs

main street - ericortner - rgbstckThere are more than 28 million small businesses in the US. They provide 55% of all jobs and 54% of US sales. Unfortunately, the failure rate in the first two years is between 50 and 70%. Some sources say it’s even higher. You have a better chance of watching your business fail than your marriage and the fact that that fact is scary says a lot about the world, doesn’t it?

Glass half full time – a record number of entrepreneurs are getting rich off their small business idea and that’s incentive enough to keep millions of people in the game.

A new survey from Constant Contact shows that the majority of small business owners are cautiously optimistic about not only their chances of survival, but of their growth potential.

Twitter offers mute option; less noise, no hurt feelings

win7_muteLast night, I spent a little time cleaning up my Twitter feed. I followed some new people and unfollowed quite a few. With every “unfollow” click, I felt a little twinge of guilt. Will the person know I unfollowed them? Not a big deal for the dozens of strangers I follow to see if it’s a good fit, but I wanted to unfollow a friend who simply posts too often for my liking.

Social media etiquette – it’s a real thing.

This morning, Twitter came to my rescue with a new option called mute.

Instead of cutting all ties to a person, mute lets you remove all of their Tweets from your feed while still keeping the lines of communication open. The “muted” person can favorite you, reply and retweet and send a direct message. Twitter does say you won’t get any new SMS notifications about that person.

Mother’s Day according to Facebook and Twitter

Twitter and Facebook are both celebrating Mother’s Day with infographics and data lists. Might be some useful marketing nuggets in here, so let’s take a look at what they got.

Moms TwitterThe 4 ways moms us Twitter

Twitter did a fast user profile study and came up with some interesting info about moms on Twitter – like the fact that they use the service for a quick escape. I never thought about it that way before, but I do, too.

More than 60% of moms check their Twitter feed when they need a laugh and more than 76% will share those moments when they find them.

That’s a fact we can all use. Humor sells. Humor gets you noticed. Think about how you can include that in your next big pitch.

New Facebook Audience Insights gives you a look into the lives of your customers

facebook audience insights“Know thy enemy and know yourself; in a hundred battles, you will never be defeated.”

I’m sure Sun Tzu didn’t have social media marketing in mind when he said that but it sure is true . . . well, it’s true if you substitute the word “customer” for enemy.

Do you know your customer as well as you know yourself? Facebook has a new tool that can help you if you don’t and might surprise you if you think you do.

The new Audience Insights tool will show you what your target customer loves to do, watch, buy and how they spend their free time. It’s an intriguing look at not only your customer pool but how that pool stacks up against Facebook users as a whole.

Now Twitter adds language targeting

Yesterday, we talked about how LinkedIn has added language-based targeting options to their Company Pages. Now Twitter is here to say, they speak your language, too.

Twitter doesn’t mention it in their intro post but according to Mashable and Statista, 78% of Twitter users are based outside the US. Since 2010, international growth has way outpaced US growth 745% to 390%.

Let’s take a moment to think about 745% growth. Insane. But it makes me wonder why Twitter didn’t mention that on their blog. Are they worried that the US-centric advertising audience won’t like that the vast majority of players are living on the other side of the ocean?

Promoted Tweet Languages