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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.

Want to reach a young audience? Snapchat might be the next big thing.

SnapchatWhen you’re a marketer, it’s up to you to find out where the people are so you can reach them with your message. It was the newspaper, then radio, then TV, the internet and now social media – especially the mobile kind. If you’re trying to reach potential customers under the age of 30, then it’s an even tougher job because by the time you discover the next big thing. . . it isn’t anymore.

Here’s my tip of the day: Snapchat.

Snapchat is a mobile messaging app with one very unusual feature. Unless one party takes a screengrab, the text and images disappear when you’re done chatting.

Perfect for teens with parents who routinely check their text logs or unfaithful partners worried about getting caught.

Facebook expands video stats as long as you upload not link

Facebook video metricsFacebook wants to be your everything. They want your posts, your ads, your photos and now they want your video. Not a post with a link to your YouTube video. They want you to upload your video straight to Facebook. If you do that, they’ll reward you with better audience metrics so you can see what’s working and what isn’t.

It’s not a bad plan because we’d all be happy to use Facebook as our everything platform if we knew there was a benefit to doing so.

Facebook announced today that the new video metrics are coming soon and they include “video views, unique video views, the average duration of the video view and audience retention.”

YouTube gives creators a brand boost with intro video option

Simpsons ChalkboardAbout a third of all the videos I watch on YouTube have a branded intro. It sets the tone and let’s you know that the person you’re watching is serious about creating consistent content. They’re also easier than ever to make thanks to a variety of cheap video editing tools.

On TV, the opening credit sequence is pretty much a thing of the past, but YouTube wants it to become a staple for online creators.

Starting today, you can now automatically add the same 3 second intro to all your videos with just a few clicks.

  •  Upload the three-second intro video you’d like to use to your channel as an unlisted video.
  • On your channel’s InVideo Programming page, click “Add a channel branding intro” and select the intro from a list of eligible videos.

Digital NewFronts: Microsoft makes Xbox movies and Yahoo plans to travel

DCNF_logo_square_2014“We’re at a critical moment for video consumption.” @marissamayer #Newfronts pic.twitter.com/vDXiP9Doa0

“People spend more time looking at their phone screen than their TV screen, and that’s what we’re excited about” -@peretti. #NewFronts

Levin: everything we create will be smart, creative, disruptive. We’re already a content company (ref to games) #newfronts

It’s time for the 2014 Digital NewFronts in New York City. Based on the TV UpFronts, where the networks whoo advertisers with delicious teases about their upcoming season, the digital NewFronts are all about selling advertising online.

Yesterday, The New York Times, Buzzfeed, Microsoft and Yahoo took the stage with their presentations giving us all a peek into the future of online – here’s a hint “video” and ads that look like content.

PopSugar study says lifestyle videos are the way to a woman’s heart

Popsugar Mobile FirstVideo is one of the most underused marketing tools available to the average small business owner. I know why. It takes effort, equipment, creativity and some know-how to make a good video. People will give it a shot once or twice but soon find it’s too much work on a regular basis.

That’s a shame because video is an extremely effective way of connecting with your customers – particularly the women.

PopSugar and ulive teamed up to conduct a survey about how women consume lifestyle content. What they found was that women watch videos for two main reasons, to be entertained (74%) and to learn (71%). 60% also said they watch videos because it inspires them to try something new.

Simple, Fun, Creative = Winning Video

The guys and gals over at Owler get it. They figured out that you don’t have to spend five-figures to make a fun, and very effective, video that explains your business and gets a customer to understand what you do in under two minutes. Check this out.

Great video, right? So how can you do the same without breaking the bank? Here is what Owler had to say about the making of this video.

Start With Identifying Your Benefits

We started by brainstorming the most important benefits of Owler to our target audience. We narrowed it down to three benefits. Company alerts, curated “noise-free” news and community polls.

How To “Show” The Benefits?