Master Marketer Series: Brush Up On Blogging Headlines

Aug 5, 2014

Headlines Are Like Hemlines: They Work When They're The Right Length For The Situation


It's Like the Perfect Come On. Srsly!



We know that YOU know that blogging is important. Because...


It's a key way of drawing your future clients into your world through super-duper content that is useful to their lives—and delightful.


It's part of the inbound marketing method that Inbox Communications practices—and preaches.


That's why we've started this Master Marketer Series. It's a chance for us to take a deep dive into a topic that relates to inbound marketing and is of interest to marketing professionals (or gurus, or ninjas, or special agents, or whatever you like to call the people on your team).

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You're Authentic and On Message. But Are You Funny? Marketing With Personality

Jul 18, 2014

Adding a Bit of Zing to Your Inbound Marketing Content Strategy


Some companies shy away from humour for various reasons. Done wrong, it goes over like a lead balloon. Done right, it soars. Just think of a time you had to give a presentation and you opened with a one-liner. Determing if it was great or horrible depends on the audience's reaction. If you had tonnes of laughs, it likely was a good joke for the room. The absence of any guffaws (the sympathetic ones don't count) is indicative of a bad joke. 


In the online sphere, you can't always judge a reaction by measuring the laughs in the room. So how do you measure? If you've put out a good campaign, you'll get comments mimicing the same tone as the original ad or post, as well as likes and shares—all of which are all great indicators of quality engagement by your audience with your brand.


Being funny is important. Why? It drives engagement with your brand. Don't believe us? Take it from Doc Searls and David Weinberger, author of the gonzo marketing guide The Cluetrain Manifesto. Their book puts forth 95 theses for working in the modern world. Most recently the duo said that "companies need to lighten up and take themselves less seriously." 


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Do You Fail Gloriously?

Jul 10, 2014

Weighing the Pros and Cons of the Failure Report


Do you fail gloriously? In full-color? On double-page spreads? We ask, because recently we came upon the Failure Reports of two prominent organizations and found these to be a bit of a head-scratcher.


A failure report is just what it sounds like. It's the annual report of what wasn't achieved. It screams loudly: We messed up here, here, and here.


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On Breakfast and Blogging

Jun 19, 2014

First There Was the Selfie, Then The Shelfie And Now May We Propose THE BREAKIE? Yes, #Breakie

It's not only the most important meal of the day, but now it's also a way to engage your audience.




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Optimization, Or Why You Need To Be A Perfectionist

Jun 13, 2014

Practice Makes Perfect When It Comes To Your Website


What is optimization?


Optimization is a process of making something as fully perfect and functional, or effective as possible.

If you apply this concept to your website, you will want to make it as user-friendly and easy to navigate as you can.

Planning for this success will help you later down the road with your marketing techniques. 


Optimization at a very high-level means:


  • Creating and optimizing your blog posts
  • Perfecting your social media strategy
  • Tweaking your landing pages
  • Organizing your conversion opportunities 


A great analogy to this is thinking about having a party. If you have a party, you invite people. If you have nothing to do for them once they get there  there's no games, drinks or food, what's the point in having them there? So, with your website, you want to make sure that it's a great site.


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Academic Breakfast: Lessons, Or A Blog On Blogs

Jun 11, 2014

A Meta Blog? AcademicBreakfast


This new Tumblr site, called "Academic Breakfast" sounds like shorthand for terribly banal online content. When someone wants to criticize our ever-connected digital life, they usually complain about how pedestrian some of the content is on social networks and blogs. They'll say something like, "Gee, do I really need to see what Tommy from my kindergarten class has for lunch?" And, no, it likely won't add much to your life to see food pics from your grade-school besties. However, this new blog has much to offer in terms of insight from the seemingly banal.


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The Future Of Real Estate Marketing

Jun 9, 2014

Why Going Inbound Is Essential For Real Estate Marketing


Where is real estate marketing in 2014?

Real estate marketing is all about inbound marketing. Although you can continue to spend on billboards and other traditional media ads, today’s most effective strategies involve blogging, social media, email marketing and creating valuable content that will attract your buyer personas.


Buyers Shop For Homes Online

The National Association of Realtors in the US found that real estate searches on Google grew by 253% between 2009 and 2013. Their report found that buyers rely on search engines and general websites to begin looking at houses. In the middle of their search, they begin using maps, and towards the end, often start using apps. 


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Three Great Stock Photo Sites: Download and Dream Away

May 14, 2014

Remember when Blondie sang "Fade Away and Radiate"? Recall that tune and change the lyrics to "Sign Up and Automate."


Yes, seriously. "Sign up and Automate." Consider it the call of the new age marketer. There will be no tuning in and dropping out here. A new mantra—at least when it comes to stock photography—is to sign up and automate. In other words, subscribe and sit back and wait for great images to come to you.


That's what a number of stock photography sites out there allow you to do. Offer up your email address and on a regular basis—say once a week or once a month—you'll receive a zipped file of images in your inbox to use in your marketing efforts. Seems like a fair deal, no?


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Blogging Best Practice: Reading Time Summaries

May 7, 2014

Should You or Shouldn't You Use a Reading Time Estimator?





Have you seen those reading time headers on blogs? They're usually a little icon or text popout box that indicates the average time it might take to get through a blog post.  


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Inbox Partners With TD Ottawa Jazz Festival

Apr 17, 2014


Our Top Picks For TD Ottawa Jazz Festival (June 20 to July 1, 2014)


Dang! Somedays, don't you think, 'Frig, I LOVE my job!'? Well, it's been like that around the Inbox shop lately. We're thrilled to be working with the cool cats at TD Ottawa Jazz Festival, which has been taking place in Canada's capital for nearly 35 years. Last week, we announced a partnership to manage the festival's media relations and online marketing activities with a very nice press release that included a dateline, contact information and lots of flattering details about Inbox.


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On Photography: Getting The Right Look For Your Marketing

Apr 7, 2014

Separating The Great From The Cliché

It's no coincidence that the title of this blog post is also the title of a series of essays by Susan Sontag. "On Photography" is a compilation of those works, which originally appeared in the New York Review of Books in the 1970s. In those essays, Sontag argued that the proliferation of images created a "chronic voyeuristic relationship" between people and the world around them. A similar argument was made in the 1962 book, The Image, by Daniel Boorstin. He talks about massive changes brought on by what he calls "The Graphic Revolution."


Both authors saw a decline in engagement in everyday life and in political activism with the rise of mass visual culture. And these arguments were made before the advent of Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook. Like way before - by a few decades. One can only imagine what the authors' take would be on our picture-heavy world today. There is plenty of visual appeal on every website and social media channel. Some websites communicate with only a few words of text. Does this indicate a decline in literacy? Perhaps. (And there are dozens of books to make that case). It also indicates that there is power in communicating visually.


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Neighbourhood Insider: Ottawa! A Great Place

Apr 3, 2014

It's A Dapper Capital. Finding Out About The City From The Insiders


Here's a short tip sheet on getting to know neighbourhoods in Ottawa. This is a great primer for you if you're new to the capital. If you've lived here since the first time Jim Watson was mayor, you may recognize some of the blogs and websites we point to here. Feel free to tweet us with your suggestions and additions @inboxtweets. You can share this list with your out-of-town guests, your business clients, or your besties.


Inbox! A great Ottawa marketing agency.

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How To Optimize Your Website

Mar 31, 2014

For Starters, Think Of Your Website As A Luxury Condo


Why would you want to optimize your website? The answer is that you want to attract the right kind of visitors. Optimizing a website requires thought and planning. It starts with understanding what kind of people you want to find your website. Once you know who they are, the next step is to determine what you want them to do when they get there. Optimization is about creating a world-class website experience through clear content, user-friendly design and keyword optimization.


The website you build will determine the kinds of people you will attract. Think of your website as a luxury condo that you want to sell. The views are spectacular, but you also need to have the high-end furniture and ambiance that your target market is seeking. It's the same with your website. You need to create the experience that your website visitors want.

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Brand Engagement In The Social Media Age

Mar 26, 2014


What Matters Now Is Engagement


You might have noticed that things have changed in the last few years around the subject of branding. How you brand your business is no longer just a matter of some clever creative and timely ad placements. As an example, let's take the first step of the inbound marketing methodology - getting found by potential customers. These days, a business shows up in one of millions of results on a search engine results page. A building’s super swanky sign is just one of thousands of visual cues bombarding overstimulated passersby every day. And the promotional giveaway that once appealed to the masses is so passé. Now it looks like nothing more than a spammy banner ad.


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The Value Of Knowing Your Buyer Personas

Mar 24, 2014

personasSemi-Fictional Representations Of Your Ideal Customers


The foundation of inbound marketing is knowing who your buyer personas are. A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers. When creating your buyer personas, consider including customer demographics, behavior patterns, motivations and goals. The more detailed you are, the better. You need a literal picture of who this person is and what information is important to them. 


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Inbound Marketing: Be Delightful!

Mar 21, 2014

The Inbound Methodology




The term “competition” has been around a long time—but once the Internet and social media became part of the communication equation, the word took on new dimensions. Saying that there’s a lot of competition out there for your clients’ attention is, to put it mildly, an understatement. And we all know that. So now, more than ever, it’s important to think carefully—and differently—about just what approach you’re taking to marketing.


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Why Your Business Needs a Good Keyword Strategy

Mar 19, 2014

ToKillAMockingbird"You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view... Until you climb into his skin and walk around in it." These words were spoken by Atticus Finch in the novel To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. They can also be your inspiration for developing keywords. Why? Because keywords are all about seeing from someone else's point of view.


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Lorem Ipsum: A Marketing Opportunity

Mar 17, 2014

DIY Lorem Ipsum. It's A Fun Team-Building Exercise. Moreover, It's Good Branding.


As marketers, we're always helping our clients to reinforce their brands in many ways. We also try to take our own advice now and again, and apply our methods to our own shops. Here is a mini case study about a cool marketing opportunity you can use. While working on a project, the team here at Inbox Communications got to thinking about lorem ipsum, the placeholder content that is part of the drafting stage of most of our creative work.


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