Hello, I’m an AI Bot. How can I help you?

We are all familiar with the basic chatbot on websites. It pops up somewhere in the first few minutes of browsing a website and is limited to basic question/answer responses. Generally, these chatbots are used by retail brands to provide customer service. Until now, they haven’t provided value or even sufficient capabilities for B2B brands.

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The Good and Bad of High-tech Marketing Tools

17-MCB-808Like so many people, I am greeted each day by hundreds of emails. Many are from well intentioned companies that would like to help me solve problems, innovate processes and make more money. In other words, to help me be more successful.

As a generally optimistic person who is always hopeful that the newest, greatest thing that will take us to the next level is just a click away, I open and read. From time to time, something sounds so good that I will click through to a website to get more information. After all, M/C/C is in the marketing communications business, and we want to use the best tools available to help our clients be successful.
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The Oscars 2017: The Winners of the Biggest Night in Hollywood

If I’mnatalieblogphoto being completely candid, every year when the Oscars comes around, I find myself more interested in the red carpet than the actual awards. Although I believe Emma Stone needs to be recognized for her breathtaking gold dress, and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson should retire his blue velvet jacket, I’m here to talk about the biggest moments of the night. Viola Davis’ words made your whole family cry, Jennifer Aniston reminded us that we will never look that good at 48, and of course there was that epically awkward moment during the biggest award of the night. Congrats, “Moonlight.” Ouch, “La La Land.”

However, while the stars shined, there were some big names that did not receive any accolades. I’m talking about the sponsors of the Oscars. Fortunately for them and in the spirit of the award show season, I’ve decided to make some awards of my own.

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Five Signs That You Need to Kill Your Website

For this month’s blog, I was asked to list my top reasons for updating your site. But that topic is a red herring. You need only one reason to “update” your site – because you can. That’s the beauty of websites, versus TV commercials, brochures and other kinds of marketing communications. You can and should refine, create and delete content, functionality, design elements and images in order to improve your visitors’ experiences. These updates should be an ongoing point of focus. They should be based on analytics, and the changes should come monthly, weekly or even daily, depending on the traffic your site receives.

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So the real question isn’t whether you need to update your site. It’s whether you need to replace it. At M/C/C, we’re big advocates of something called iterative web design and development. In essence, that means your website should evolve over time in response to user actions. If you practice iterative design and development correctly (and luck breaks your way), you may never need to build a new website again. Instead of launching a new site every couple of years, your site could just fluidly become something else over time through an ongoing series of small improvements. Having just written that, I will admit that sometimes even the best-laid plans go astray when luck doesn’t break your way.

Here are five instances when you need to put your website out of its misery:

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The Seven Questions to Answer Before Handing the Red Rose to an Agency

Making a perfect match of agency and client is a little bit of Match.com, The Bachelor and the old-fashioned happenstance meeting. That is to say it’s one part science and one part romance with a just little touch of pixie dust.

There is no doubt that happy, long-lasting agency/client relationships are a lot like a marriage. And, in my experience, clients and agencies kiss lots of frogs before finding the right match.

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Reaching Millennials on YouTube

YouTube is addictive. It’s a magical place where you can watch endless hours of games, cats, pranks, vlogs or whatever else tickles your fancy. Millions of people view videos on YouTube every day, so it’s no surprise it has become one of millennials’ main sources for entertainment and information. Google research shows that YouTube reaches more 18-34 and 18-49 year-olds than any cable network in the U.S.

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Culture is King

How would your company like to attract and retain better employees than your competition can? Employees who are engaged with your customers and are invested in the success of your business? Employees who are advocates for your brand and who collaborate with one another?

It’s hard to imagine any company that wouldn’t like to enjoy these benefits.

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Avoiding The Pitfalls Of A Basic Paid Search Campaign

eMarketer research predicts that U.S. advertisers will spend 11 percent more on paid search in 2017. Although this is the first year that display spending will surpass paid search, it is still neck and neck with display as one on the top budget line items for marketers, with $32.32 billion expected in 2017. With that much going into paid search, advertisers need to make sure their campaigns don’t get caught in any number of trip wires, thereby losing their campaigns’ effectiveness.

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We’ve compiled the top three pitfalls of implementing campaigns in Google AdWords. Avoiding these will ensure you are getting the most effectiveness out of your campaigns.

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Saying #YES to Unofficial National Holiday Hashtags Can Boost Brand Awareness

If you’ve ever been on social media, or even watched the news lately, chances are you’ve seen the fad of unofficial national holidays and resulting hashtags. Whether it’s National Pizza Day, National Taco Day, or my personal favorite, National Dog Day, these random holidays are influencing the way users interact with each other and even more so, the way brands are advertising, particularly on social media.

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