July’s Guest Speaker Joe Griffin Says The Future of Content Marketing is Bright

As content marketing rapidly evolves, the key to businesses successfully adopting it into their strategy is to know where it’s heading. Joe Griffin, CEO and co-founder of Phoenix-based iAcquire and ClearVoice,shared his knowledge and vision of the future of content marketing with a presentation to more than 120 guests on July 17th at Arizona Interactive Marketing Association’s (AZIMA) monthly program.

While highlighting the fall of traditional content channels and sharing the ingredients of the “brave new world” of content marketing, Joe started his presentation by clarifying the shift from the old to new.

“The future of content marketing is here,” he said. “The general collapse of big journalism, the shift in consumerism over the last four years, adoption and usage of smartphones and smart tvs, and big data is changing the marketing landscape forever.”

Joe outlined the future with interesting statistics by illustrating some of the trends that determine the future of content. First he shared these startling mobile, social and search figures:

  • Smartphone ownership skyrocketed from 63 million in 2010 to 166 million in 2014
  • Smartphone usage followed the same path with an average use time/day of 24 minutes in 2010 to 2 hours and 51 minutes in 2014
  • The number of daily searches went from 3.6 billion/day in 2010 to almost 6 billion in 2014
  • In 2010, 62{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} of the population was on social media and in 2014 the number still climbed to 72{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903}

“The mobile revolution is the most fundamental change in the way we work,” Joe said.“The process of the purchase funnel is at the core of any content strategy.” He further explained this point with a graph that showed how mobile, search and social create myriad influences a buyer now considers on the path to purchase.

The presentation then highlighted the dramatic fall of traditional content producers and the shift to new publishers of content.

  • Newspapers newsroom workforce dropped from about 56,000 employees in 2006 to 38,000 in 2012
  • Native digital news organizations grow their staff
    • Vice: 1,100 employees
    • Huffington Post: 575 employees
    • Politico: 185 employees

Joe continued with what he calls the “Content Conundrum” by sharing a slide labeled “The Deluge of Crap.” As brands and many others become publishers of content the amount of quality content lessens. As search engines like Google and its Panda update attempt to battle this deluge, strategic content marketers have an opportunity to shine. “The winners in the post-deluge era will be the companies that build something precious,” Joe said, coining a quote from Velocity Partners.

After explaining the past and current content atmosphere, Joe shared the future of content marketing. “Big data, content targeting, native advertising, retargeting, off-line convergence and influencers are changing the game,” he said.

His presentation continued to explain in greater detail these future content marketing elements culminating with iAcquire’s unique ClearVoice tool to help find and connect with targeted influencers.

To learn more about what caused these fundamental changes to content and elements of the future of content marketing, check out Joe’s presentation here:

Be sure to join us on Thurs., Aug. 21 for our next program, “Is the Second Screen Experience Overrated?” Hosted in conjunction with Ad2 Phoenix, this unique program takes place at Macayo’s Restaurant in Phoenix and features a panel of experts who will discuss this popular topic.

We encourage you to learn more about AZIMA and contact one of our board members with any questions!

Join AZIMA in Celebrating Social Media Day on June 28 and Save on Registration!

social-media-day

 

There’s a lot of buzz lately about this year’s Social Media Day in Phoenix!

There’s a new format, a new venue, and a great roster of speakers lining up for the evening event which takes place on Sat., June 28 from 6 to 10 p.m. at the Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel. Valley social media enthusiasts, small business owners, media, marketing professionals and others will all benefit from educational content sessions and networking! AZIMA will be there and you can save $6 using our special promo code: AZIMA when you register today!

Social Media DaySocial Media Day was created by social media giant Mashable in 2010 to celebrate the digital revolution, and has grown tremendously since its inception. Today, Social Media Day (#SMDay) has transformed into a worldwide celebration that is recognized by more than 100 countries, six continents and 17 U.S. cities.

#SMDAYPHX is now being managed and coordinated by MoniQue Shaldjian, owner of QtheBrand, a Phoenix-based digital marketing company specializing in social media, SEO, web development and branding.

Enjoy light appetizers and desserts, signature cocktails, cash bar, photo booth, as well as the Social Media Day celebration! Purchase your raffle tickets for a chance to win over $3,000 in prizes from local businesses!  Proceeds from the raffle will ensure continued social media education for the Phoenix community.

Schedule: 

6-6:30pm Registration (Lobby/Goldwater)

Content Sessions: (Goldwater)

6:30pm Social Media and The Legal Aspects Behind Using Intellectual Property

6:55pm Advertising on Social Media

7:15pm Social Media Fails (panel)

8-10pm Hors d’oeuvres, desserts, cocktails, and celebration. (5th Floor Terrace)

See you there!

Why Real People Like AZIMA

AZIMA Members

You’d expect our official site to talk about the benefits of joining the Arizona Interactive Marketing Association, right?

But the people whose opinion matters more aren’t the official ones. They’re the people like you — who don’t automatically believe the marketing story.

Here are the four biggest reasons those people, the real ones, are excited about belonging to AZIMA:

 NETWORKING

Mark Knoles of Gate6 singles out the opportunity to meet fellow professionals as his primary benefit from joining the group, and David Knight of Republic Media agrees. “I can sum it up in one word: networking,” he says.

“It’s a great way for people in the Phoenix metro area to connect with other marketers,” notes Paul Borselli of Ethology.

Networking includes promoting expertise built through association with the group, which can boost credibility for individuals as well as companies.

Joanne Levin, who joined as a Mesa Community College student, refers to her AZIMA activity on her LinkedIn profile. “I promoted that I was coming tonight,” she said at a recent event. “It’s a great organization.”

There’s also the prospect of networking leading to new business, as it has for Cody Landefeld of Mode Effect. “We’ve worked on website projects with other member companies,” he says. “I like the collaboration with folks in the marketing world.”

Jackie Wright of Rainmaker Integrated uses AZIMA meetings as a way to introduce new concepts to people who may not be familiar with every aspect of interactive marketing. “I enjoy bringing digital marketing players into our business model,” she explains.

Equally enthusiastic about spreading the word on digital marketing is Lisa Owen of G/O Digital. “This is a great resource for our account managers and fulfillment team to stay up-to-date on trends,” she says.

LEARNING

Lisa isn’t the only one who appreciates AZIMA’s monthly programs on a variety of topics. Makinzie Loeffler of Medical Marketing Solutions confirms, “I’ve enjoyed learning a lot from all the speakers.”

“The headline grabbed me,” says Clay Hanawalt, a visitor who received an email about a recent program. “I’m interested in Facebook and Pinterest marketing.”

That same event drew the attention of Alexandria Marlar, whose co-worker at Spooner Physical Therapy suggested “this might be beneficial to what I do in my job, which encompasses social media.”

Programs change from month to month, always focusing on different aspects of internet marketing.

Tessa Barrientos of Cramer-Krasselt cites the educational opportunities as one of her reasons for valuing AZIMA. “I’m brand new, and excited about learning,” she says.

“I always come away with inspiration and ideas for marketing our company better,” notes Paul Capodanno of Gate6, and Sean Rogers of Republic Media concurs that membership is a great way of “staying abreast of what’s current, the way the industry is unfolding.”

SOCIAL

While learning from experts is always popular, learning from fellow members is another benefit. “Everyone shares their knowledge with each other,” says Natalie Barreda of Vertical Measures. “You can share ideas and grow, and help each other grow.”

Mixing and mingling before dinner and the program makes it easy to strike up new relationships. “You can meet a lot of people here who do what we do,” observes Andrew Tamm of The Lavidge Company. “You don’t get to do that often.”

That’s true for veterans as well as for new members like Carrie Morgan of Rock The Status Quo. “I joined six weeks ago because I do a lot on the national level but wanted to do more locally,” she explains.

David Knight confirms the value of coming face to face with others in the business. “I’m new here,” he says, “and this is a wonderful way to meet people.”

Of course, there’s more to enjoy than just great conversation by the bar. “I’m here for the food!” jokes Cody Landefeld, and Jorge Tobar of eBay Enterprise expands on that theme. “There’s a cool menu — the speakers and the dinner.”

VARIETY

One reason for the cool menu of programs is that AZIMA is focused on serving so many different aspects of the internet marketing community.

“There’s a wide variety of speakers from around the industry,” observes Sarah Schager of Vertical Measures. “There’s paid advertising, and social, and everything.”

Austin Leonard of eBay Enterprise agrees. “We’re seeing the full Phoenix digital community here,” he says.

“I like the variety of speakers and topics,” says Kathy Morgan of Ethology, and her co-worker Paul Borselli concurs: “It’s important to understand how all four pillars of the industry work together — branding, agency, media and marketing technology.”

Jackie Wright, an AZIMA board member, explains that the blend of perspectives is deliberate. “The business model is fully integrated; you get a 360-degree view of all the facets of marketing,” she says.

Variety also figures into what Roger Hurni of Off Madison Avenue views as the group’s mission:

“Having been one of the founding companies of AZIMA, I’m often asked why it’s beneficial to be a member of it. The reasons are numerous. To start, the value of the membership fee to the number and quality of monthly events is the best educational deal I’ve ever seen — bar none.

“That said, the real value is in the connections you can make with other members. My comment isn’t about the networking, that’s a given. It’s about the conversations you have with other members that can provide you with new insights into new strategies and practices that would be difficult to find elsewhere.”

MEMBERSHIP

If any of these reasons for joining AZIMA resonate with you, you know what to do — click here!

Why Visuals are More Important Than Ever: Recap of May Meeting

Nearly 90 guests attended the May 15 Arizona Interactive Marketing Association (AZIMA) event, The Visual Guide to Content Marketing and Repurposing,” presented by Matt Siltala, owner of Avalaunch Media, at the Hilton Scottsdale Resort & Villas. Matt began his presentation with some eye-catching statistics supporting why the trend is going visual:

  • 90{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} of information submitted to the brain is visual.
  • Images process 60,000 times faster than text.

His informative presentation covered several social media platforms, including: Instagram:  Matt shared several examples of brands that have experienced growth because they show how their products and services are being used through visual promotions, motivation, mini infographics and time-sensitive messages. Consider:

  • There are 150,000,000 users on Instagram and 70{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} of them check it daily.
  • 55 million photos are uploaded every day.
  • 15 billion photos have been shared via Instagram.

Pinterest:  Here’s another great platform for sharing visual content, and as Matt said, “Any industry is pin worthy.” He suggested creating a business account, not a personal one, and like Instagram, show how people are using products. He said most people make the mistake of not tying in their Pinterest account to their other marketing efforts and emphasized the importance of sharing your best performing pins on Twitter, Facebook and Google+ as well as adding a “Pin It” button to your website. These stats illustrate the power of Pinterest:

  • 62{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} of brands have “Pin It” buttons, compared to 61{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} of brands with tweet buttons and 59{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} of brands with Facebook ‘Like’ buttons.
  • 70,000,000 users, of which more than 80{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} are female.
  • 80{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} of pins are re-pins (best image size is 600 x 800 pixels). Use tall images to get more re-pins.
  • 78 cents in sales/pin on average, up 25{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} from 2012.

Matt also spent time sharing tips and statistics regarding Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Reddit. To hit home the fact that the trend is going visual, he shared these overall stats:

  • 6 billion photos are uploaded each month on social media platforms.
  • Photos and images get 50{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} more interaction than other content and 10 times more shares than links.
  • Videos on landing pages increase page conversion rates by 90 percent.
  • 60{2bbd478b6aadf2a9bb5e10dcf35d17c0d0772390afbaf5ac8145fb1096668903} of consumers are more likely to click on a business whose images appear in search results.

Throughout his presentation, Matt sprinkled in generous doses of humor, even sharing a photo of AZIMA’s past president, Arnie Kuenn, in a Santa Claus suit. He ended his presentation with a list of tools we can use as well as tips for standing out, such as becoming a better writer, thinking like a journalist, and sharing insights and information, such as trends and case studies. He also emphasized the importance of repurposing successful content into blog posts, news releases, Linkbait articles, infographics, video, podcasts, images/memes, white papers and PowerPoint presentations. And don’t forget to utilize all of your social media assets!

Matt was kind enough to share his presentation – You can view it here.

Special thanks to Matt for opening our eyes to a visual trend that can’t be ignored! Join AZIMA on Thurs., June 19 to hear Eric Kingsbury’s presentation, “How eBay Enterprise Uses Commerce Data to Design and Deliver Targeting Online Advertising.”

We encourage you to learn more about AZIMA and contact one of our board members with any questions!

(Photos by Christi Gardner.)

Meet Adam Arkfeld: AZIMA Volunteer and President & Founder of ParaCore

Adam Arkfeld

Bet you didn’t know that Ron Burgundy is sending you emails about AZIMA’s programs and other events. Well, not the real Ron Burgundy, but close enough. Adam Arkfeld, president and founder of Tempe-based ParaCore is the talented web developer behind AZIMA’s email campaigns. He also doesn’t take himself too seriously, as evidenced in his “About Us” section on his firm’s website, where he and his “eclectic nerd herd” team have photos of their alter egos displayed. But while Adam chose Ron Burgundy for his alter ego, he takes his work very seriously.

“I primarily oversee operations and really enjoy building a business that revolves around systems, consistent experiences and great work,” Adam said. “My entire day is essentially problem solving and learning new things which are my two favorite things to do.”

Founded in 2009, ParaCore works with medium-sized businesses that are looking to use the web to automate processes and convert visitors. Automating processes allows clients to save time and create consistent experiences, while converting those visitors generates the actual revenue. “In addition to ground up development, we primarily do custom web work that helps different systems talk to one another like CRMs, the website, databases, email clients, social media networks and more,” he said. “We also love web based apps and hybrid native apps like PhoneGap!”

An Arizona native, Adam’s passion for technology started at an early age. “The first website I ever worked on was a site called Preserve Your Flowers for my aunt. She owned a floral freeze drying business and I used to sit in the Barnes & Noble coffee shop between classes at ASU updating her site’s HTML. This was in the early 2000’s so the sites were way different back then!” he said.

And while technology has improved, Adam said there’s still a lot of confusion regarding the best way to build and maintain a website. “The biggest misconception we’ve run across lately is that every website should be built on WordPress,” he said. “ParaCore does a fair amount of WordPress development; however, there’s a point when a site stretches beyond WordPress’s natural capabilities and a more custom solution should start being considered. If it’s a large site, oftentimes WordPress simply isn’t organized well for more advanced features like intranets or file sharing portals with API integrations.”

He also said there is a common misconception that creating an email campaign is easy. “Emails are one of the most painstakingly tedious projects a development company can work on,” he said. “It can take the same amount of time to create a visually attractive email that looks great and is responsive than it takes to test a small web project. It’s absolutely insane how challenging they are to look great and consistent across devices.”

AZIMA is very grateful for Adam’s volunteerism and his enthusiasm for our organization. When asked why he joined AZIMA, Adam cited the programs along with the fact that AZIMA provides relevant industry information. “The networking and people I’ve met are really amazing which makes my time spent at the events very valuable. I also appreciate the varied speakers, topics and presentations because I feel like I leave each event with some tangible value.”

AZIMA Academics & Internship Guide Connect Students And Interactive Employers

Are you an employer looking for a qualified intern or employee but just can’t seem to find the right fit? Or maybe you’re a student, fresh out of college looking for an opportunity as your first step into the working world. Finding the right match in the workforce can be tough, but luckily there are resources that can make the process easier.

AZIMA is providing a free fully comprehensive recruitment and internship guide for Arizona college students and employers. This guide will be available on the joinazima.org website and can be used to help companies and interns connect in the marketing/interactive marketing space. The guide provides a step-by-step, how-to map for employers desiring to post available job and internship positions through the official college websites, as well as contact information for the main personnel in each career service department. Some of the colleges listed include but are not excluded to Arizona State University W.P Carey School of Business, the University of Arizona Eller School, Devry College of Business, Thunderbird School of Global Management, as well as various other Arizona based community colleges like Scottsdale Community College, Mesa Community College and Paradise Valley Community College.

This model is the perfect guide for employers looking for interns or employees with fresh and innovative just out of college experience. The model is also a great way for students to check out the latest job and internship opportunities from employers. So if you’re an employer looking for the perfect fit for your position or an undergraduate or graduate student searching for new opportunities AZIMA is here to help

Download the free guide: Click Here

Learning Global Marketing Lessons from Fender Guitars

Richard McDonald of Fender Music shows slide of Jimi Hendrix

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to work for a brand that claims the highest market share in every market it enters? Richard McDonald, the SVP of Global Marketing for Fender, knows. He grew up worshipping Fender, and now he not only works for it, he lives for it.

At the April AZIMA meeting, McDonald informed us that Leo Fender wasn’t a guitar player; he was a brand innovator, committed to his product, and willing to interact with his customers to ensure their passion was also his passion. He drove the business by letting his customers take the wheel, supplying guitars to musicians and crafting new models from their feedback.

McDonald presented us with three lenses of the Fender brand: protect, evolve, and transform.

  1. Protect the brand by creating compelling products
  2. Evolve the brand to create profitability and operational excellence
  3. Transform the brand to engage and grow the customer base.

As a company, Fender demonstrates these lenses by keeping its products relevant, engaging its customers, and daring to dance along the edge of innovation. McDonald urged daily customer interaction to enable the brand to do what it should do: reflect the customer. Staying relevant in such a dynamic landscape is difficult, but if you tell your story well enough, you don’t have to worry about your customers having misinformation.

For example, Fender decided to address negative online chat room buzz in an unorthodox way by inviting the seven loudest influencers to visit Fender’s headquarters. While there, these individuals received a firsthand view of the brand and the people behind it.

This visit demonstrated the value of interacting with customers and the impact of receiving immediate feedback. It wasn’t about who shouted the loudest; it was about having the right voice- that of the customer. If you can’t relate to your customers, you can’t solve their problems. And if you can’t solve their problems, your brand is destined to become a “what not to do” case study for MBA students.

Throughout the presentation, McDonald emphasized strategy. Not a brand strategy, not a digital strategy, but a customer strategy. No matter who your customers are, you have to know them, relate to them, and listen to them.

Technology today makes it both easier and more complicated to interact with customers. It grants instant access to feedback, while increasing the touchpoints along various channels of communication. More channels equal more feedback, which equals greater opportunity to either win customers or lose them. The use of technology shouldn’t be “checking the boxes,” it should be about putting your customers at the center so they can help you transform your brand to stay relevant.

From their first Telecaster® prototype in 1951, to their current position as one of the world’s leading marketers, manufacturers, and distributors of musical instruments, Fender has amplified the musician in all of us. They have consistently proven it takes more than just a big sound to be successful. That’s why Fender continues to hit the sweet notes by staying relevant, engaging their audience, evolving their products, and sharing their passion- one string at a time.

Digital Summit Phoenix: March 31-April 1

digital-summit-phoenix

Interested in learning more about internet business and marketing? If so, attend Digital Summit Phoenix-a new local conference by TechMedia located at the Phoenix Convention Center March 31-April 1.

Digital Summit Phoenix offers the premiere forum on digital strategies with incredible speakers. Over 75 speakers from leading brands will be providing you with the latest digital marketing and business strategies and best practices.

For more information, visit: Digital Summit Phoenix. For a $50 discount, use promo code: AZIMA. Register now.

Thanks to Digital Summit Phoenix, AZIMA has been able to offer two conference passes.
February’s winner of a conference pass: Anthony Nichols, Digital Paid Media Specialist, Ethology.
March’s winner of a conference pass: Katie Stoeller, Project Manager at G/O Digital.

Winners of the 2nd Annual AZIMA TIM Awards

AwardTable

More than 100 people gathered at the Phoenix Art Museum to honor the best in the business at AZIMA’s 2nd Annual TIM Awards.

Named after Sir Timothy Berners-Lee, acknowledged father of the World Wide Web, the annual TIM Awards celebrated digital marketing professionals and their successful interactive marketing campaigns during 2013.

Here are the winners for 2013: 

Best Website

First Place: Global Rally Cross
Finalist:
The James Agency

Best Social Media Campaign

First Place: Ideas Collide, Best Western International’s Vacation Citation
Finalist: Wirebuzz, Breast Cancer Answers

Arnie Keunn

Arnie Kuenn, founder and CEO of Vertical Measures, was named Interactive Person of the Year for 2014

Best Integrated Interactive Campaign

First Place: Infusionsoft, Thrive 365 
Finalist: WireBuzz, Breast Cancer Answers

Best Email Marketing Campaign

First Place: Forty, 80s Tees’ Awesomely 80s
Finalist:
The Lavidge Company, Massage Envy Spa’s Guest/New Member Email Drip Campaign

Best Display Ad (Single or Campaign)

First Place: Flagstaff CVB 
Finalist: LaneTerralever, Lifelock

Best Rich Media Execution

First Place: Republic Media, Pink Jeep Tours

Marcus Sheridan, founder of The Sales Lion, hosted the awards ceremony.

Marcus Sheridan, founder of The Sales Lion, hosted the awards ceremony.

Best Mobile Marketing Campaign

First Place: FIdeas Collide, Best Western International’s BW Alive! Summer Promo
Finalist: LaneTerralever, Grand Canyon Visitor Center Mobile Fencing

Best App

First Place: Ideas Collide, Best Western International’s Best Western To Go
Finalist: Qualia, BlueSpark’s Web and Mobile App

Best Blog

First Place: iAquire 
Finalist: AZ Tech Beat

Best Online Video

First Place: Vertical Measures’ ‘Why Visual Content is So Important’
Finalist:
Ideas Collide, Best Western Indie Film Series

Brand of the Year

Best Western International (Ideas Collide)

Interactive Person of the Year

Arnie Kuenn, Founder and CEO of Vertical Measures