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Olympic Social Media

Contributed by Jane Putnam

The Sochi Olympics: the Olympians came, we watched… and we tweeted, apparently. In a recent blog post, Twitter revealed the most-tweeted events, the most-mentioned athletes and peak moments on the social network during the two-week Olympic Games.

Any guesses at who takes the gold in most-mentioned athletes via Twitter? Hint: Not a U.S. athlete. While we may dominate in many of the events (go #teamUSA!), our population and its use of Twitter are dwarfed majorly by population-heavy countries like China and India, for example, as well as other countries that are much more active on Twitter. (The U.S. came in eighth out of 10 in a listing of countries that sent the most Tweets, per million population, mentioning the Olympic Games – full listing below.)

Most-Mentioned Athletes
1. Mao Asada, Japan
2. Yuna Kim, South Korea (@Yunaaaa)
3. T.J. Oshie, U.S. (@OSH74)
4. Shaun White, U.S. (@shaun_white)
5. Mark McMorris, Canada (@markmcmorris)
6. Akiko Suzuki, Japan (@Mariakko2010)

Countries That Sent the Most Tweets (per million population)
1. South Korea
2. Russia
3. Japan
4. Netherlands
5. Canada
6. Norway
7. Latvia
8. United States
9. Mongolia
10. France

The most-mentioned events? Ice hockey leads the pack, followed by curling, figure skating (my personal favorite!), bobsled and snowboarding. Check out Twitter’s recap blog post here for more stats and findings.

We have just under 900 days left until the Olympic Games return, this time in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. But, in the meantime, we have FIFA World Cup coming to Brazil later this year. What do you think, will we see as high of Twitter activity during the World Cup? Tell us in the comments (or tweet us @pennapowers).

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Lately we’ve focused on helping clients go mobile for a simple reason, their customers are everywhere.

True, consumers are still reclining in comfortable chairs, in front of 15-inch screens with a mouse and full keyboard but they are more often hovered over five-inch screens impatiently navigating with one free hand while waiting for their lunch order.

This constant connectivity continues to grow. From 2011 to 2013 smartphone adoption in the U.S. has increased from 36 percent to 61 percent due to more economically priced models. Tablet users have also grown for the same reason.

“At Google, we believe that constant connectivity represents a sociological shift in how users relate with both the digital and physical world,” Google’s The Mobile Playbook explains. “Businesses that understand this will win.”

We agree that understanding the mobile audience is the first step to building a strategic plan to reach it. This post is the first of a going mobile series to discuss the ins and outs.

On a high level, mobile consumers are typically busy and on-the-go, looking for convenience and impatient with obstacles between them and what they are looking for. They are usually navigating smaller screens and are less apt to input text. As shown in our The Future of Your Brand Is Here video:

  • 67 percent of mobile users say that when they visit a mobile-friendly site, they’re more likely to buy a site’s product or service.
  • 80 percent of consumers plan to make a purchase through their mobile device in the next 12 months.
  • 80 percent of mobile users will open an advertiser’s app from a mobile ad.
  • 71 percent of mobile purchases are triggered by an email received from a company.
  • 57 percent of mobile users will only wait three seconds for a website to load before moving on.
  • 52 percent of mobile users will still call or visit an advertiser after seeing a mobile ad.
  • 41 percent of consumers, using a mobile device, have browsed for a specific product after seeing it in a TV show or an ad.
  • 36 percent of consumers comparison shop from their mobile device while in a brick and mortar store.
Some mobile-friendly practices to accommodate these consumers are an alternate navigation, quick-to-load images, streamlined content, and larger buttons.

What do you prefer in a mobile websites or apps? Let us know in the comments.

Sources: Adobe, eDigitalResearch, Google, InMobi, Mobify

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More likely than not, your job title is not “Proofreader.” But it is just as likely that your position requires at least a little bit of proofreading, which does make it… your job. In communications, it is obviously a huge part of what we do and is a very important part of the process. So here are some quick tips on how to make the most of it.

Choose a style guide and stick to it: You will run into a lot of circumstances where there is not really a right or wrong answer. Choosing a style guide will give you an answer to most of these questions and eliminate a lot of confusion.

Watch for the most common mistakes: According to The Everyday Writer, these are the top 10 most common writing mistakes made.

Know the proofreader’s marks: Being able to properly mark-up a document can go a long way. When the editor receives that paper, they will know exactly which changes to make, and that saves a lot of time.

Know the writer: It isn’t always possible, but if you are proofreading for the same writers over and over, be sure to make note of common mistakes that they make. The better you know their writing style and tendencies, the easier it will be to catch everything.

Look for formatting as well as spelling and grammar: Some key things you can check for are:

  • Spacing between words, sentences and paragraphs
  • Widows (a single word separated from the rest of the sentence)
  • Orphans (the first line of a paragraph ending up at the end of a page)
  • Margins
  • Font size and style
  • Overall aesthetics

Read like you’re from another planet: You might know exactly what the writer is talking about but will the intended audience? The readers may not know your industry terminology, so be sure that everyone can understand what is trying to be said.

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Pinterest: Email

Pinterest recently surpassed email as the third most popular channel for sharing content, right behind Facebook and Twitter. Email has been around since the 1960s and has been steady in its success since conception. So how does a four-year-old site surpass a method that has been successful for many years?

It comes down to evolving consumer preferences. Today there are hundreds of social networking websites to choose from and each of those channels has a specialized use. Pinterest wasn’t created so that you can keep up with your friends or communicate important messages quickly, it was created specifically for content sharing. After taking a look at my inbox, I was actually surprised that Pinterest did not pass email sooner. Almost none of the emails I have received over the last year were for content sharing.

The last three content sharing emails I received (all from my mom):

On January 1: “Seldom Seen Flowers”

On December 16: “Remember” – an E-Card

On October 1: “Dogs and Cats”

I remember laughing at these emails, because I had already seen them on Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram. But not every demographic is open to using multiple forms of social media, which is partially why it took a little time for Pinterest to move up past email.

Pinterest’s new-found stature is great news for advertisers. The more content shared, the more chances for you to get your product in front of more people.

  • The new promoted pins (still in the experimental phase) allow advertisers to reach a broad audience with entertaining content.
  • Content on Pinterest moves quickly, 80 percent of total Pinterest pins are repins. (RJMetrics)
  • Pinterest buyers also spend more money, more often, on more items than any of the other top five social media sites. (comScore)

Email may have lost in content sharing, but it still has its use without a doubt. I use it every day at the office. As a matter of fact, I have sent more than 7,000 emails this year. It is key in professional communication and can be very useful for advertisers as well.

  • Email coupons and advertisements are still a very strong tactic for attracting consumers. 66 percent of consumers have made a purchase online as a result of an email marketing message. (Direct Marketing Association)
  • 76 percent of email opens occur in the first two days after an email is sent. (Alchemy Worx)
  • Email also has the ability to reach each customer directly in their inbox, which makes advertisers almost guaranteed to be seen; 82 percent of consumers open emails from companies. (Litmus)

What are your thoughts on email falling in the content sharing ranks? Let us know in the comments.

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Why We Love It

Undeniably, content marketing has taken the lead in how we communicate. More than 27 million pieces of new content are created daily. And beyond the mind-boggling number, it has earned this stature because of its value. Never before have we been able to connect, interact and deliver in the way that they want it.

For marketers, self-publishing can eliminate many barriers and waste to directly communicate ideas and information, build trust, create awareness and build relationships. But the biggest advantages are in its power to convert consumers into taking a desired action—and then (the holy grail!), measuring and tracking the impact of that action.

Creating valuable content is the first step. Once you set your strategy and objectives for what your content needs to accomplish, build your editorial content calendar by:

  • Curating content ideas from your current brand ambassadors. What do they want to know?
  • Interviewing company experts for ideas.
  • Providing tips to solving a problem.
  • Commenting on industry news and trends.
  • Sharing your brand stories.
  • Compiling lists of resources.

Next, get it out, but mix it up. The key is to get your content out to the many, many places where people are already spending their time. Use:

  • Websites and microsites (make sure they are mobile friendly)
  • Blog posts
  • Infographics
  • Slideshare
  • Social channels (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, Vine)
  • Use hashtags
  • Webinar
  • Videos

Millions of pieces of content are created each day and have the potential to be shared billions of times.

How are you planning to incorporate content marketing into your communications this year?



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Many companies choose to outsource their online advertising to a digital media agency. That is fine.

Many companies receive monthly banner ad reports and do not know how to read or measure them. That is not.

This article will walk you through six essential elements that should be included in a banner ad report:

1. Average CTR, CPM and CPC for display ads. This will vary on how targeted your advertising campaign is, but below are the standard metrics that any digital media agency should be hitting:

     a. CTR – .10% or higher
     b. CPM – $3 to $10 depending on the site
     c. CPC – $10 (assuming a maximum $10 CPM and .10% CTR). A site over a $10 CPM should be delivering a higher CTR.

2. Screenshots. It may sound trivial, but this is a good way to test that your digital agency is running the correct creative on the types of sites you want them to run.
3. Site list. If you are running through an ad network, which is a network of sites, are you receiving a report of what sites those are? We’re not talking a sample list, but an actual list by impressions of where your ads actually showed up. Ask them.
4. AdWords optimizations. If your digital shop is monitoring your AdWords campaign, you should be receiving a report of all the changes they are making. Hopefully these changes helped lower your overall costs while still maintaining quality traffic. Also, in your AdWords report you should be able to see the following:

     a. Ad groups
     b. Average cost-per-click
     c. Click-through rate
5. Analytics tie-in. You could be receiving thousands of clicks from your banner ads, but what are your customers doing once they are on your site? Your digital agency should be able to provide you with an analytics snapshot of what visitors from each source are doing.
For example, we have run through ad networks with very low CPMs, received lots of clicks, but then the average user spent 0:03 seconds our site with 100% bounce rate. Sure, lots of visitors but none that mattered.

6. Summary of performance. If your digital agency provides a summary and next steps, it means that they are actively working on your campaign. If you receive an automated report from their ad server that has clearly not been formatted, then likely they have your campaign on autopilot and haven’t looked at it at all.

These six steps should ensure you are getting what you pay for in your digital media agency.

These are all standard reports, but may vary based on your advertising budget. As a note, this article does not include metrics for lead tracking. If you would like more information on how to set up or monitor lead tracking, please contact us directly.

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Image via AAF-Utah

Image via AAF-Utah

Contributed by Jane Putnam

On Saturday, PPBH was awarded five ADDY awards from the American Advertising Federation of Utah (AAF-Utah) as part of the annual American Advertising Awards. We’re proud of the work we do at PPBH and are excited to be recognized for our creative and digital work on these projects:

Great job to our creative and digital teams for their work on these projects and everything else that comes through the shop. Nice work!

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You see it everywhere, people are obsessed with their phones. They shop with them, work from them and keep them by their bedside. In fact, it might just be the one thing they can’t live without. See why mobile is the future of your brand.

To learn more about how we can take your brand mobile, contact:

Chuck Penna

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Social Media and Writing

Contributed by Jane Putnam

No, I’m not talking about the lost art of communication with the ‘LOLs’ and replacing entire words with a single letter (e.g., “r u coming to dinner 2night?”). That’s a topic for another day. Today, I’m talking (or writing) about how communicating with our key audiences and stakeholders through social media pushes us—forces us, rather—to be better writers in order to get our point across and work within our key messages.

1.    140 Characters – Twitter has revolutionized a lot of things, and character limit is definitely one. The challenge? Get your message across in a succinct, clear way in 140 characters, including any URLs or photos. I love this challenge because it cuts the fluff and forces you to stick to the meat—the main point—of the message.

 2.    Engagement – Write to be engaging. What action do you want followers or fans to take? We don’t (or shouldn’t) write to ourselves, so having our key audience in mind, along with a desired action (click, like, sign up, tell us what you think, etc.) keeps our content and writing smart and most importantly, engaging. In reality, all of our communications should be engaging, so hopefully this will have a ripple effect on all other areas.

3.    Attention Span – Though this is nothing new to many areas of the communications arena (billboards, radio spots, etc.), it is important to note that social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Instagram are not places for long-form writing (I’m sure there are a few exceptions, but for the most part, no). Our key audience is short on time and has lots of people and brands competing for it. Very few people will stop, click “read more” and take minutes out of their day to read an essay-of-a-post on Facebook. Write to be understood, in a short amount of time. Make the most of those seconds we get in front of our stakeholders.

4.    Specific Audiences – Thanks to some killer analytics now available from social media channels, we can now see the demographic make up of our audiences. Additionally, with some features, you can make sure your posts go out to specific sub-groups. Knowing who is (or hopefully will be) reading our content helps us reign it in even more, targeting it to our precise group.

5.     Testing – This is being able to see what works and what didn’t, and move ahead accordingly. You can try out new types of content, writing styles and calls to action, and see the response (or, lack of response… awkward). Whatever the outcome, treat it as an opportunity to refine your writing based on the feedback and perfect it for the type of writing your audience responds to best.

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