Local Visibility 101: Getlisted University Teaches Michigan All About Online Marketing

Over 200 people attended the Getlisted.org Local University event in Grand Rapids this past week and were given a firehose dousing of valuable information on increasing their online visibility.  Top National SEO experts David Mihm, Mike Blumenthal, Aaron Weiche, John Carcutt and Will Scott downloaded to the audience with the latest info on Local SEO, Social Media, Google Places and a whole host of valuable topics.

Here  are some highlight photos and videos from the event:

Getlisted University Michigan: David Mihm presents common site pitfalls

David Mihm takes the crowd through common website pitfalls

Getlisted University panel

L to R: John Denny, Mike Blumenthal, Will Scott, David Mihm, John Carcutt, Aaron Weiche

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The Deer Have Guns: How Social Media Is Now Rocking Your Customer Service World

For many businesses, managing customer relations has long been fairly straight-forward.  You put out what you thought was a pretty decent product or service, and if the customer didn’t like it, you could tell them- as they say in France– “sucks for you” (ok well they probably don’t say that in France but it sounded good).  We’ve also all been there as a customer– the toy you bought your kid that stopped working 5 minutes after he opened it and the store says “lost your receipt? Guess you’re out of luck, store policy”.  For centuries there has not been a whole lot you could do about it.  But now, it would appear, that time is rapidly ending.  Now that person formerly known to you as your compliant, “herd ’em into the barn for milking time” customer is now armed.  That customer can very much make it suck for your business too.  As  Jay Baer writes about in his book the “Now Revolution“– in this new world “every customer is a potential reporter, and every employee is a potential spokesperson”.

When you add on top of that the fact that a recent survey found that 70% of local customers use reviews as a factor when making a decision about a business, and 69% trust the reviews of strangers as much as recommendations from people they know, it begins to send a clear signal that this is an area you want to pay attention to.

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The Marketing Revolution: Light Reading To Help You Wake Up and Smell The Java

Assuming you haven’t been living under a rock the last 10 years, you’ve been getting the drift that some things may be changing in your marketing world.  But it’s not always easy to remind yourself that you need to be thinking a whole new way, and be developing entirely new skill sets to make yourself relevant to what’s going on.  So here are a few “wake up and smell the coffee” articles about the shifts going on, and what you need to do about it.

Snooze Alarm Number 1: “The Future of Advertising” from Fast Company

 The first point of view is “The Future of Advertising” from Fast Company.  If you are an ex-Ad Agency person like me– and you know a whole lot of people who used to work in the traditional agency business who hung on to that melting iceberg of traditional mass media ad strategies right down to its ice-cube size nub– this is quite a read.  Here are the some key take-aways:

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The Five Disciplines You Need To Know To Practice Marketing Today

People often ask me—whether they’re hiring a marketing agency, looking to find a marketing staffer, or  simply want to get more customers to buy from them —what knowledge is now foundational in a world of marketing and advertising that is changing so rapidly?  What are the core knowledge areas needed to succeed for where the world is now moving? The reality is the skills needed as a marketer running a mass advertising campaign in 1995 across 3 networks and a few cable stations are completely different from the capabilities you need to succeed today.  So below I’ve outlined the new core five—and provided a few basic sources to start you off learning what you need to know.

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Signs The Google Place Page Is Becoming Your Second Site

I talk to local businesses every day about their visibility in search results.  And what amazes me is how many have no idea what their Google Place page is.  I’ll pull it up in front of them, show them the information that Google, in one tidy page, has compiled on their business. And there is this kind of amazed reaction- “Hey- will you look at that!”  Kind of like magic. 

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Social Media 101: Where Do I Start If I Want To Learn More?


Social media is everywhere you go today.  It’s what everyone talks about.  It’s what many people use to describe lots of things (even when they don’t have a clue what they’re talking about).  So to you, this may sound a lot like 1999 when a whole bunch of people were talking “surfing the web”, “monetizing eyeballs” and the buzz was that companies like The Globe,  GeoCities, and Broadcast.com were taking over the world.  And look what happened with that?  Bustado and most of them gone.  So is Social Media pretty much the same thing?  Is it the hot fad like Boy Bands– here today and then we’re going to laugh at how silly everyone was a few years from now?  Recent articles in pubs like AdAge and essay’s from folks like Malcom Gladwell have started questioning this “outsized enthusiasm for social media” and its impact on our world.  And in the middle of some of the debate going on right now, it might be easy to crawl under the covers and feel encouraged that this facebooky-tweeter stuff may just all go away and life will go back to its safe and predictable orbit of the sun.  So is that what you should do?

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SEO Basics: Page Titles that get your content found

 When we talk to businesses about search engine optimization, one of the first things we do is check out their site to see how sophisticated they are about optimization.  And one of the quick “tricks” our team uses is get a sense of whether any of the most basic SEO work has been done, is to check the page title.  A page title that includes the important keywords consumers are using to find the business, and that is well written, tells us (in about 3 seconds) how much the people we’re potentially working with actually know.  You’d be amazed at how many page titles say “Home” (Now if you look right now at the page title of your home page and it says “home”, you can immediately put yourself in the remedial class with a test score that doesn’t even give you credit for signing your name.  You need help).

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