moneyteen

Why YouTubers are Cashing In (hint: they are worth it)

I’ve read more than a few articles that sensationalize the large dollar amounts that Digital Influencers are making. I’ve also overheard many people having conversations about this that indicate they ...

tropes_header

More Than Hauls + How-to’s: The YouTube Tropes

So now that you understand that working with Digital Influencers is important and you are starting to recognize who they are and what makes them tick, it’s important to understand ...

Michelle Phan's Wicked Red Riding Hood

What do YouTubers Have that Brands Can Learn From?

Now that we've established the growing power of the digital influencer and their ability to engage your audience on a deep and meaningful level, let's dive into why they've become ...

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fans

Why Digital Influencers Matter More Than Ever

There is a new influencer in town. She’s part celebrity, part media, part spokesperson and nothing like you’ve ever dealt with before.

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The Key to Marketing in the Social Era: Understanding Digital Culture

The good news is that the new rules are fun to follow. The bad news is that digital culture is almost opposite to brand culture, so adopting them will take some time and leaps of faith.

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fairydust

How to be Creative

My work is fundamentally creative. There are loads of analytical pieces, but at the end of the day, marketing is about making a connection with human beings who are not as predictable as marketers would like to think. Yes, there are lots of studies on consumer behavior and human drive and we can move the […]

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socialmedia_notwhatitmeans

No, Social Media Doesn’t Drive Sales…but that’s not the point

Okay, maybe I’m overstating it. Some sales are driven through social media channels. I know I’ve bought books and songs and contributed to Kickstarter campaigns many times because a friend shared a link and I thought, “Hey! That’s awesome! I should buy that!” I’ve even tipped a bigger purchase in favor of a friendly recommendation on […]

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Notlistening

5 Things Customers Don’t Want to Hear…EVER

Oh companies. Relationships are SO much easier than you make them. In fact, there are only a few things that you need to do in order to make your customers significantly happier. Or rather, there are a few things you must stop doing and saying that will change your customers’ experiences drastically. I’ve compiled a […]

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followtherules

If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.

[title quote attributed to Alexander Hamilton as well as Malcolm X in various forms, image bought from Shutterstock] I’ve been trying to put my finger on the problem with so much of the social content brands put out into the world. Why does it seem so damned flat and soulless? Sure, they post the occasional […]

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Shutterstock photo

Switching Costs: A Person’s #1 Reason for Not Trying Your Service

People get comfortable with routines…even if they aren’t the most efficient. Sticking with a familiar inefficiency is often less daunting than switching to an unknown. Many companies try to sell their products and services as an ‘easier’ or ‘time saving’ or ‘better’ way to do something, but even if your potential customers will save time […]

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Dangerous Data: when it tells the wrong story

I opened up my email this morning to see an article from Mashable titled The Anatomy of the World’s Top Performing CEOs [INFOGRAPHIC] and then opened the article to see a really depressing infographic that emphasized the maleness and marriedness and even the hairline of the CEO’s. At first I thought, that’s not good for […]

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Iwantthat_pug

The Bones of It: The Products That Grab Our Attention

“I need that.” What is that thing that draws us to some products, people or experiences (even before we experience the product) while others are so forgettable? I came across a home security system called Canary on Kickstarter recently that, all of a sudden, made me excited about home security. Before I saw Canary, I didn’t really […]

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Kitty Nerd by Carolina Valsecchi Gillmeister on Flickr

Big Data? No, SMART Data

One of the things I’ve loved most about crafting my career in online marketing is that there is lots of feedback when it comes to campaigns. You can tell almost instantly what people respond to and what falls flat. When I started out in marketing in 1999, billboards, radio, television, print and other difficult to […]

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Book On How To Find Love

Playing the Long Game

Shortcut. Silver bullet. Hidden passageway. Secret. So many people want one or want to unlock one and sell it to everyone for profit. In fact, the number of ‘unlocked secrets to…’ that I’ve seen advertised is off the charts. This says to me that these schemes work. Not the secrets themselves, but the schemes to […]

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Why Content?

…because all roads lead back to content. Without content on Facebook, you have this: Exciting, eh? Without content on Twitter, you have this: Hmmmmm… Blogs, Pinterest, Instagram, Slideshare, Tumblr, etc all are merely content holders. Without content, you have tools. Without content, nobody has a compelling reason to click the follow/like button, let alone get […]

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Screen Shot 2013-06-25 at 12.05.22 AM

Can’t Buy Me Love: following the social engagement protocol

The other day, I was meeting with an associate who was relaying to me his frustration with influencer marketing: “Tara, influencer marketing just doesn’t work. I made a deal with the most influential person in this network and he posted his shining endorsement of my product and I got very little results.” He lamented, “He has […]

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EDGERANK CONCEPT handwritten with chalk  on a blackboard

Marketing’s REAL Beef with Facebook

Yet another article has come out yesterday on how Facebook is a waste of time for marketers because posts only show up for 8-16% of their followers. As someone who has been in marketing for over 15 years (online marketing for 14 of those), these posts irk me. To me, they show a low understanding […]

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Content Mix

The Content Marketing Mix

So now that you’ve been inspired to try your hand at social content marketing, and you understand your audience and what kind of content may appeal, it’s time to plan out your content mix. Understanding the content mix that works for your audience is incredibly important and many companies get this very wrong. I break content […]

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Creating a Smooth(ish) Hangout on Air

I’ve been poking around Google+ (G+) and Hangouts on Air (HOA) for some time now, but hadn’t really taken much of a leap into things until recently when I made the mistake of suggesting my client use it to tie together a series of events across Canada. The mistake wasn’t in the suggestion of the tool, per se, but when […]

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hedgehog_fox

The Secret to Great Social Content

[Hedgehog & Fox – as found for sale on Etsy by StayAwake in London, Ontario] First off, the title of this post is misleading. There is no formula, everything is social and it’s not about the content at all. But with that out of the way, there IS a different philosophy to creating social content […]

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15387919_m

Let Me Wave my Magical Content Wand

It usually starts something like this: Hey! Everyone I know is on Instagram! We should start an Instagram for the company! The suggestion in itself isn’t wrong per se, it’s just not made with much of an understanding of how these social platforms work. It takes less than 5 minutes to set up an Instagram […]

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tara_entrepreneurmag

Featured in Entrepreneur Magazine as a Woman to Watch

I usually try to be pretty humble when it comes to getting press. (“Try” being the operative word!) But this one I’m especially proud of because: 1. it’s in one of my favorite magazines 2. I share the page with one of my heroes 3. the distinction is pretty darn awesome (no really) I did giggle […]

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tag

The Sinners and Saints of Social – Retail Version

This week I gave a presentation on the sinners and saints of social to a room full of retailers. The sad truth is that it’s nearing the end of 2012 and it’s still really difficult to find brands that are doing a good job of social. There are definitely more and more that are starting […]

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The Social vs. Interest Graph

I’ve been using Pinterest for about a year and a half now and Facebook for just over 6 years. And though I’m not one of those Pinterest Addicts I hear so much about, I use it pretty consistently for an entirely different reason than I use Facebook. On Facebook, I post a mishmash of stuff: articles […]

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youtube-maximidia

Engaging a Brand Advocate vs. Advertising Spend: Case Study

Just as a short follow up to my last post, I want to show you something I uncovered. Estée Lauder has done something very good: they hired popular fashion/beauty/foodie/lifestyle blogger Emily Schuman of Cupcakes and Cashmere to do some videos for them. This is interesting to me because ,although I love Emily’s stuff and she’s […]

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Michelle Phan's Wicked Red Riding Hood

Brands on YouTube: Hits and Misses

Viral videos are still largely a mystery. Why a South Korean music video has been viewed over half a BILLION times in less than 3 months is beyond me. It’s a catchy tune, yes. And the parodies have been oodles of fun. But over 500M times? I doubt anyone would have predicted that. Justin Bieber […]

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bindersofwomen

Why I Heart the Social Web

Even though I’m not American and cannot vote, I enjoy watching the US Presidential debates. Why? Because like any live event, it creates an opportunity for some fun collective dialogue in social spaces. Last night’s debate didn’t disappoint. As I follow many people with different political leanings on Twitter, it was interesting to watch the […]

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Hitting a Brick Wall

When it Comes to Social, Small is the New Big

Actually, big has never really been the way social works. Big is the way traditional advertising operates. The bigger the bullhorn, the bigger the brand impact, right? Sure it reaches more people, but as the old adage goes, “It’s not the size, it’s how you use it.” And this matters more than ever in the […]

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angrynails

The Seven Deadly Sins of the Fashion Web

I spend a good part of every day keeping up on fashion trends: whether it’s through reading articles and trend pieces in online publications or sifting through online retailers and design showcase sites. I do this mostly because of the nature of my startup, but I am also personally interested, an avid shopper and passionate about […]

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hierarchyofbuying

The Hierarchy of What We Buy (and where you want to be)

Most people will tell you that they only buy necessities and stuff that makes them a better person (books, travel, etc). In fact, this is only an observation, but the types of things people are happy sharing on their Facebook wall tend to be purchases that fit into the SELF-ENLIGHTENMENT box above. It’s hard to […]

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custommade

Becoming a Social Retailer

One of the biggest issues with the label “social” is that it often gets misconstrued as the use of social media. So when I hear about an ecommerce site using social, I can almost always bet they’ve done things like putting a ‘pin-it’ button on their product pages and are using Facebook connect on some […]

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moneyteen

Why YouTubers are Cashing In (hint: they are worth it)

I’ve read more than a few articles that sensationalize the large dollar amounts that Digital Influencers are making. I’ve also overheard many people having conversations about this that indicate they think this is frivolous. I want to tell you that when I hear anyone snicker at what Digital Influencers are making, I automatically think: That […]

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tropes_header

More Than Hauls + How-to’s: The YouTube Tropes

So now that you understand that working with Digital Influencers is important and you are starting to recognize who they are and what makes them tick, it’s important to understand HOW you work with them. One dimension of this is understanding the types of content that they are producing on a regular basis. Part of […]

Continue Reading
Michelle Phan's Wicked Red Riding Hood

What do YouTubers Have that Brands Can Learn From?

Now that we’ve established the growing power of the digital influencer and their ability to engage your audience on a deep and meaningful level, let’s dive into why they’ve become such powerhouses.

Continue Reading
256362_402587736464802_1327397541_o

It’s time to call it: Pulling the plug on Buyosphere

We’ve been keeping Buyosphere on life support for almost 2 years now. It breaks my heart, but it’s time to pull the plug. We kept hoping that something would happen…someone would come along to save the day: we’d get an upswing in usage (from non-spammers), we’d get someone coming along that would want to buy […]

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donothing

It’s Worse Than You Think: or why you should care about poverty, jobs and income inequality

Follow my blog with Bloglovin [Row of Unemployed from Flickr Commons] I’m afraid. Truly. I’m afraid of where we’re headed. We live in a world where the basic storyline goes something like this: we are born, we get educated, we go to work, we earn money, we buy a house and get hitched and have […]

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Confidence and the Cause-Effect Loop

From Lean In to inspirational messages, the answer to much of inequality seems to be the responsibility of the person on the losing end of the equation. Fair enough, you might say, that person stands to gain the  most. Let me offer up another angle. I was born a confident person. I’m not sure how […]

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Screen Shot 2014-01-10 at 5.37.45 PM

My Aptitude Adjustment (with Latitude by YouScience)

I love this stuff, so I just have to share. Sorry if it seems gratuitous or ‘braggy’. I don’t mean it that way. This might be the coolest thing I’ve done for my career in quite sometime. This week, I signed up to try out an Aptitude Test product by YouScience called Latitude. For a […]

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2012-emailteaser

2013 in review: WordPress Stats

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog. Here’s an excerpt: The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 58,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 21 sold-out performances for that many […]

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