Thursday, October 29, 2009

Email - still going strong

Today, let's focus on our old pal the email campaign.

Regardless of your industry or size, email marketing should still be playing important roles in your overall marketing strategy. When embracing Facebook and Twitter, let us not forget our friend the monthly email newsletter.

While some social networking sites come and go, email shows no signs of slowing down or becoming obsolete. Email is not a fad. Email, dare I say it, could be here to stay.

What makes email so appealing?

Well if you use a company like Constant Contact or another email manager software then email is completely trackable. You can find out how many of your emails were opened, who clicked on which links, and other useful information.

Email is thusly more accountable then social media.

Consumers more and more are relying on their emails. Even the older generation have emails to keep in touch with Grandchildren who are living at a distance. For the user, it's fairly easy to learn and manage.

Email vendors (such as Constant Contact) are getting better and their software options and tracking are improving. It's low cost, based either on the size of your list, or the number of emails you will be sending in a 30 day period.

Email software programs can personalize your email, Dear Beth Ashton.

You can include basic html and logos

And always include a call to action.

To get you started check out the free version of MailChimp. Upto 300 email addresses, and send up to 10 emails per month.

Email - don't start marketing without it.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

What's new with me

Today's post is all about how blogging can be seen as simply talking to friends about what's new in your life.

For some tourism operators in Atlantic Canada, what's new in your life IS what's new in your business.

Take myself in this example... Have I been putting forward the best blogging content over the past two months? Not really and here's the inside scoop. While during the Day I work tirelessly on tourism issues and technologies, at Night I become the Volunteer Director in charge of putting together all the details for the Fredericton edition of the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run for the Cure. The event is the first Sunday in October and gets more time consuming as it gets closer to event date.

Day and Night become blurred, technology posts slide, what I think is more critical work comes first.

Dilemmas? Most certainly.

Should I have been upfront with my followers (all three of you) ?
Should I have even confessed to it today?

My exact situation is a little different from yours... my Day and Night job areas were quite far apart. However if I was organizing the "Giant Tourism Festival", then I should definitely have been blogging about every little detail !! That would be an ideal condition for making time to blog.

But I was doing something unrelated to Tourism. My dilemma being, if I mention upfront that posts are going to be sparser, does that incline you to stop coming by? (oops now down to two followers) Or do you take the break for what it is, a break, and take one yourself?

On the other hand, if I just start posting lame content without any rationale, some might think that I've run out of material and stop following me because they have learned all I have to teach (now down to a single follower, and I think that's my mom...)

Something to think about, and there's no right answer. You have to do what's best for you and your blog.

On a work related note, the Tourism program just got it's renewal so I'll be here until 2012 doling out that personal advice. So drop me a line and let me know what technology questions you want to see featured here. beth

Acutally by 2012 blogs will be so 2009 and we'll just have our memories of these bits and bytes.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Brand properties, Digital spending

Good heavens has it been a month since my last post? Where does the time go?

Today I have a couple of random thoughts for you...

First for the Brand hotel property managers - Internet sales will be key in 2010, and every day your property is being sold on Brand sites and others like travelocity etc. It is YOUR responsibility to check your part of the Brand site. Check it for key words, relevence, images, and attractions. If your brand site says you're next to the Skydome - you're actually next to the Rogers Center - keep your details updated.

Most Brand sites don't allow for a lot of editing but do what you can with the tools you have and make your voice heard at the Corporate level about those changes you can't make on your own.

Second, according to eMarketer, Digital spending is expected to be 17% of total US Ad spending in 2010 creating a tempting slice of pie for Traditional Ad Agencies.

In addtion to these figures, a compelling study is just announced - Internet overtakes television to become the biggest advertising sector in the UK. A record 1.75 billions pounds online spend makes UK the first major economy to spend more on web ads then on TV

Death bells are tolling for traditional media...

Some random thoughts to mull over this Thanksgiving weekend.