This Week in Marketing, Content, SEO, Google+

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Marketing Newsletter Ray Hiltz


As long and hard as this winter has been on the eastern half of the continent, I can’t believe we’re into May already.

But everything’s coming up tulips and sidewalk patios in Montreal.

It’s funny how after lived through so many winters, we still can’t believe they’ll ever come to an end. 

But when the first crocus breaks ground and the last ice crystal melts on the lawn, the memories fade as we look forward to summer. 

I imagine it’s what women experience when having children.

The interval between is just long enough to forget the pain.


Today’s topics:


This Week on the #RayBunch Show:

Medium is not the message



Has the Medium Massaged the Message?

In response to the Forbes article: Has Google+ Really Died?  (and comments it attracted, especially from impassioned Google+ users), our special guest this week on the #RayBunch  show, Mark Traphagen wrote:

“We can like something, even be a fan of it, we can find great personal value in something, but we need to keep our rational, objective evaluation abilities intact. That’s especially important if other people look to us for marketing advice.”

This quote was the inspiration for this week’s topic: The Medium is Not the Message

Fellow “bunchers, +Jessica Dewell +B.L. Ochman +Scott Scowcroft and +Randy Bowden also had much to say and ask Mark about the state of social media and business.

Check out my blog post: The Medium is Not the Message | Mark Traphagen Interview for timestamps from the show as well as the regular “Lunch Bunch Take Out” segment.


The #RayBunchTake Out 

At the end of each #RayBunch show, we leave you with our Takeout – links to resources that offer you the opportunity to dig deeper into our featured topic. 

Lunch Bunch Take Out

1.Traphgen’s Takeout OrderRay

“Every weekday in about 3 minutes, Mark Traphagen gives you some digital marketing “fast food that’s actually good for you.”

2. Build Conversation with context. Jess

Giving + Receiving = Value

3. Are You Addicted to Technology?B.L.

Just how addicted are you? Take this simple test to find out.

4. Social Media May Not Be Helping Your BusinessRandy

Has the value of social media marketing truly been realized by businesses today?

5. Principles of Community EngagementScott

Clinical and Translational Science Awards Consortium Community Engagement Key Function Committee Task Force on the Principles of Community Engagement

6. The Medium is the Message, 50 Years LaterRay

”I neither approve nor disapprove,” said McLuhan during his interview with Playboy. “I merely try to understand.”


Google Plus News

Google Plus CollectionsGoogle+ Collections

Google+ is Testing a New “Collections” Feature That Seems to be Part Pinterest, Part Blogging

In Collections, which should be available on mobile and the web when it launches, users can create collections of photos, links, and videos, or follow other users’ collections. Google suggests to early users of Collections that these are themed channels of content that could focus on anything from Salsa in San Diego to Paragliding.

There’s not much official word yet but it does sound a lot like Pinterest insomuch instead of creating “Boards” we create “Collections” of videos, links and photos based on interests.

Looking forward to checking it out.

I hope someone doesn’t write a post like: “Google+ Launches the Pinterest Killer!”


How to Use YouTube Cards to Promote Your Business

YouTube cards Randy

by Christian Karasiewicz

Are you using the new YouTube “cards” on your uploaded videos?

I’ve been using them for a while as you can see in the screen grab below. These will probably replace annotations as they also render on mobile.

Christian lists a few of the ways you can use this feature for promotion:

#1: Drive Traffic to Your Website

#2. Grow your email list

#3. Promote related material

#4. Get new clients

#5. Sell Your products

Have you tried it out yet?


REELSEO has a detailed Guide to the new YouTube Cards.REELSEO YoutUbe Cards



How-to Create New YouTube Cards in 5 Easy Steps

Creating the Cards couldn’t be easier. Just follow these easy steps:

  • Sign into to your YouTube Video Manager, and click on ‘Edit’ for the video you want to add a Card to
  • Click on the ‘Cards’ button in the top navigation bar, click ‘Add Card’
  • Click on ‘Add Card’ again to open up the creation window for the Card type you want to add. Enter a valid URL applicable to that Card type.
  • Upload an image (or pick one from the suggestions offered). Edit and optimize the title and call-to-action text
  • Click ‘Create Card’ and adjust the start time for the teaser if required


YouTube states that creators can add up to 5 cards to one video. The Cards can be edited at any time just by clicking on the ‘edit’ icon next to the card in question under the Cards tab. Cards can also be cancelled at any time.


Stuff You Should Read

17 Key Content Marketing Metrics to Start Tracking Today

by Aaron Agius

17 Content Marketing Metrics

I like that Aaron Agius points out that a successful content marketing strategy – like business a business strategy, for the data discipline of science and the creativity of art.

He lists 17 key metrics to analyze regularly.  Read the full article for details:

#1. Time on site

#2. Unique visitors

#3. Returning visitors

#4. Total leads

#5. Bounce rate

#6. Volume of organic leads

#7. Natural inbound links

#8. Cost effectiveness

#9. Lead-close rate

#10. Call-to-action click-through rate

#11. Total social shares

#12. Keyword rankings

#13. Landing page views

#14. External referral sources to landing pages

#15. Internal referral sources to landing pages

#16. Leads per keyword

#17. Reader comments


Why customer personas may be an outdated marketing technique

by Mark Schaefer

Why customer personas may be an outdated marketing technique
There has been a lot of talk in my “Circles” lately about “Personas”.

As marketers, one of the first things we ask our clients to do is to come up with a description of his perfect client.

After reading this, I have to admit, I’ve made the mistake of thinking we start first with a “persona”.

Creating an ideal customer is an exercise for new businesses, not one that has been around for a long time and intimately knows who its clients are.

“If you know your business intimately — and every marketing leader should — manufacturing scripted content gets in the way of real customer connection.”


HOA / Video of the week

Selfishness: Scott Point / Jess Counterpoint

with Mia Voss

Jess Scott and You


My fellow #RayBunch lunch mates, Jessica Dewell and Scott Scowcroft was joined by the inimitable Mia Voss this week.

I don’t get to see the show until later in the week because it goes live in my time zone just as I go to bed.

I loved the openness and sharing of stories. Totally my kind of table chatter.


That’s it for this week.

Drop me a line and let me know what you think of this newsletter.

If you’re free on Tuesday for lunch, join the #RayBunch at 12:15 pm ET.


About Ray Hiltz

Thanks for dropping by. I'm the Director of Digital Marketing for My background in business includes non-profit (performing arts), restaurants and Promotions. Having moved on from my own strategic consulting company, I now write about what interests me. So in this blog, you may read about my thoughts on marketing, health issues and business culture. You can follow me on Twitter @rayhiltz or @image24Call

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