Drive-Thru 2008: Online Marketing Essentials Presentation Summary

1. Customers are using the internet to search for solutions, products and services.

a. 80% of internet traffic begins at the search engines.
b. 68% of the search market share belongs to Google.
c. Website pages need to be optimized so they can be picked up by Google and displayed in the search results. Optimization involves page Meta Data, text on the site pages and back links to your site.
d. Sponsored search (pay-per-click) provides geographical targeting of ads, content targeted ads and 100% control of the ad message.

2. Customers compare information from multiple locations.

a. Company and competitors websites.
b. Independent product/services review websites. Ex. Cruise Critic or Consumer Reports
c. Blogs
d. Price Brokers. Ex: Travelocity or Hotel.com

3. Customers love video…a lot.

a. 73.7 percent of the total U.S. Internet audience viewed online video in March 2008.
b. 139 million U.S. Internet users watched an average of 83 videos per viewer in March 2008.

4. Once customers find the information they are looking for, they don’t want to have to search for it again.

a. 36% of internet users say they have a customizable web page, such as iGoogle or My Yahoo.
b. Subscribe to eNewsletters or email alerts
c. Use aggregators such as iGoogle to receive RSS feeds for news and information in a single place. Information that can educate and influence purchase.

5. Customers have cell phones and are texting (SMS).

a. 84 % of Americans have cell phones.
b. 74% of all mobile phone users are active SMS (Text) users.

6. Customer trust their friends and family when it comes to purchase advise.

a. Consumers trusted recommendations from consumers 78% more than they did any other forms of advertising.
b. They are using social networks such as Facebook and MySpace to communicate with people they trust and ask for purchase advice.
c. A marketer’s job is to engage with social networks to listen, learn and correct what communities say about your product and services.

Summary: Customers are interacting with the internet at multiple points and with different tools. Customers are seeking information form various channels to help them make the best purchase decision. Not one single channel provides all the information the customer is looking for in order to purchase. Loop Consulting Group helps marketers determine which channels need to be developed in order to achieve effective integrated multiple-channel marketing communications focused on increasing sales and brand awareness.


Online Communications Tools Map

This is a great visual model of the conduits to conversation. As marketers, we should be aware that our clients are engaging with all of these tools on and offline to communicate with friends, research products and services and much more. These tools shape the way we interact, how we interact with others and how new information is organized. Brian Solis, Principal of FutureWorks, explain he's map like this "The conversation map is a living, breathing representation of Social Media and will evolve as services and conversation channels emerge, fuse, and dissipate."

Marcos J. Menendez

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Drive-Thru: Online Marketing Essentials Seminar- Sept. 18th- Rizt-Carlton Coconut Grove, Miami

A breakfast meeting, designed as a "get in, get out" mini-seminar on what every online marketing and communications manager should know. We will talk about the tools and tactics currently in use, and their performance for online marketing and communications.


Search Engine Optimization
: What are the 3 things you should do to make sure your website is found by search engines. The top 5 SEO
myths and how to avoid them.

Mobile Marketing: The do’s and don’ts of mobile.
How to use and integrate the mobile channel. How to design a successful (SMS) text campaign.

Video: How to best use video? What does it cost to produce? What kind of results tracking can I expect?

Social Marketing: What are the benefits to the brand? How to get started? How to monitor your reputation? What to do right and what to avoid?

The promise: In a little over an hour, you will get an overall understating of which online marketing tools are delivering good results. It will be quick, fun, and informative, and will provide you with actionable ideas you can implement yourself.

Speaker: Marcos Menendez, President Loop Consulting Group
: Thursday, September 18th, 2008

: Amadeus Salon, Ritz Carlton Hotel- Coconut Grove- Map

: 8:30 am Breakfast; 9:00am to 11:00am

: Complimentary RSVP A Must: Cinthya M. Longarte, clongarte (at) loopconsulting (dot) com or 305.271.9915

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Social Networks Help Pick Our Next President

The Power of Social Media: Digg Your New President?

As a writer, I’m naturally curious, and I’m always looking for new research tools. So recently, I decided to become involved in social networking, or as it’s beginning to be called, “the new media”. I wanted to experience this rapidly growing phenomenon for myself, and I also wanted to see if there was true marketing potential there.

Since Digg appears to be the largest and most popular, I chose to join there. All I can say is, “Wow.” At first glance, it seemed almost like something from a Superman comic; suddenly, everyone seemed to be Lois Lane or Jimmy Olsen, rushing to get their story on the front page of the Daily Planet. But as I “dugg deeper”, I quickly realized that social networks are rapidly becoming the preferred way for millions of people to consume content on the web. And even though I’m not technically a marketer, even I could see the vast marketing potential that lies within the social network media.

Want proof of the growing power of social networks? Well, here you go: CBS News and Katie Couric have posted a video on Digg, asking members to submit questions for the Presidential candidates; Ms. Couric then suggests that perhaps some of these questions will be presented on the CBS Evening News, or even asked to the candidates themselves at the conventions. In my opinion, if the national news media is starting to recognize social networks as a viable media source, then that makes them a force to be reckoned with.

But wait, there’s more. At this year’s Democratic Convention, to be held at the Pepsi Center in Denver, CO, approximately 50 bloggers (one from each state), have been given press passes and access to the Convention. Digg then announced that they will be sponsoring a 9,000 sq. ft. tent, called “Big Tent Denver”, just outside the Pepsi Center, to accommodate more members of the “new media” to participate in the Convention via blogs, podcasts, and more. Although the number of bloggers allowed access to the Big Tent is still unclear, it’s definitely evidence that social networks are gaining power.

There are still those that feel that social media is just another passing trend. But even if that’s true, the very core of marketing is about following and capitalizing on trends. And who knows? Maybe twenty years from now, instead of going to the voting booth, we may be going to the computer and simply “digging” our vote for our next President.

(Oh, by the way, feel free to post this to Digg…)

Kathryn Smith
Chief Editor



Miami Dade College to Launch New Online Campaign

Spotlight on School of Community Education

Miami, Florida, July 15, 2008: The Miami Dade College School of Community Education has hired Loop Consulting Group to create an integrated online marketing campaign which will feature an eNewsletter called “Learn. Grow. Succeed.”. The college hopes to increase Community Education enrollment across all eight campuses. This campaign aligns itself with MDC’s mission to make education more accessible to the public by providing Community Education course schedules and enrollment online. The goal of the campaign is to generate awareness and inform prospective Community Education students that training and education for personal and professional growth is accessible and available to all Miami Dade County residents.

Geoffrey Gathercole, School Director, stated, “We’re pleased to be working with Loop Consulting Group. We’re very confident that this project will let the public know that the Miami Dade College School of Community Education can help anyone attain their educational and professional goals, regardless of what those goals may be.”

Marcos J. Menendez, President of Loop Consulting Group added, “We are delighted to be involved, and grateful to MDC for continuing to entrust their online marketing efforts to us. We look forward to developing a very successful program for the Miami Dade College School of Community Education.”

Loop Consulting Group is a Miami, FL, based internet marketing firm, dedicated to helping organizations and businesses reach their online sales and communications goals. Loop Consulting Group specializes in Integrated Online Marketing Communications (IOMC), which focuses all online marketing and advertising into a single digital voice. Loop Consulting Group creates powerful winning strategies for organizations and businesses that transition to the online marketplace across all channels.



There’s A New Search Engine In Town: Cuil Review

Cuil pronounced “cool” (use a heavy Irish accent) is the creation of ex-Google brain Anna Patterson who said to CNN that her new search engine offers “better ways to search”.

I’m always interested in better ways to find what I’m looking for, so I visited www.cuil.com to give it a test:

What I liked:

1. Simple home page, ala Google

2. Suggestive search box (based on what you type, it suggests words)

3. Folder style tabs recommending additional content sections (nice, requires less thinking, I think)

4. More visually appealing than Google

What I didn’t like:

1. Results seemed scattered on the page, but this probably because I’m used to scanning the page from top-to-bottom and Cuil presents results in a three column format.

2. Some results seemed a little confusing since they appeared with images along side and the image may not be relevant to the content.

Even though Cuil has $33M in venture funding and it’s just a couple of days old, I’m not sure if it’s unique enough to make a dent in Google’s armor. What I do like is that fact that people are trying to improve on the standards and even change them and this is how we all win.

But the ultimate judge of performance is you, www.cuil.com

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How to Make Your Website Search Engine Friendly

Google engineer Matt Cutts, who’s quite popular with the techies, offered some simple yet great advice on how to make your website easier to find by your prospective customers.

Here’s a quick summary of what he says to USA Today in his interview:

1. Add “keywords” to your site’s content; keywords are the words you think people will use to find your site when they use a search engine. The more keywords you use in your content, the easier your site will be to find.

2. Title Tags and Description Tags are the information Google displays about your website in the results page.

3. The more people that link to your website the better. People will link to your content if it’s interesting and of value. (By the way, please link to me!)

4. Advertising on Google does not get you preferred treatment. You will not rank higher in the free results because you advertise.

5. Normally, Google refreshes its entire inventory once a month. This means that Google may visit your site to look for new content every 30 days. However, don’t wait a month for Google to visit your site; submit your site to Google at http://www.google.com/addurl.

I’m not the best person to summarize interviews, but if you liked the tips above, I’d recommend taking time to watch the five-minute video interview and hear it straight from the horse’s mouth.

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