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25 B2B Marketing Automation Thought Leaders to Follow on Twitter


I had just stepped off the stage at Dreamforce 2013 when I was asked by an audience member, “Who are other thought leaders I should follow in the marketing automation industry?” I had a very hard time giving her names because marketing automation is made up of so many differing tactics, all of which have their own thought leaders. Without knowing which areas she wanted to know more about, I couldn’t pinpoint the one person she should follow to help her obtain the knowledge she wanted. This question quickly helped me realize that people currently consider marketing automation to be a singular tactic, when in reality it is a combination of many tactics. And to be proficient at marketing automation, you must be proficient at these underlying tactics.

To help better answer this question in the future, and make it easier for people to find the thought leaders they are seeking, I have broken down marketing automation into its underlying elements: Content Creation, User Experience, Search Marketing, Email Marketing, Social Marketing, and Sales/Marketing Alignment. Let’s take a look at some of the thought leaders that you should be following within each category.

Click here to read the list of Thought Leaders to Follow on Twitter

Ulla McGee, VP-mobile products, IDG's PCWorld|Macworld

Top Innovators in Business Publishing 2011

Media Business, 4/29/11

Ulla McGee isn’t a production executive in the traditional sense. She doesn’t negotiate contracts with printers or go on press checks.

As VP-mobile products at International Data Group’s PCWorld|Macworld unit, McGee works on production’s new frontier: helping the unit and IDG as a whole create content and apps for the mobile Web.

The job is a relatively new one. Up until last year, McGee’s title was VP-business development, but it became apparent several months ago that mobile was occupying an increasing amount of her time. “I have really moved into a focus entirely on mobile products and mobile product development,” she said.

Because of its coverage of Apple Inc. and its audience of Apple fans, Macworld and Macworld. com have been at the epicenter of the seismic shift Apple has caused with its introduction of the iPhone and iPad. McGee was involved in Macworld’s first steps toward optimizing its website for the mobile Web as use skyrocketed after the debut of the iPhone. Earlier this year, McGee helped introduce the Macworld Daily Reader, its first native iPad app.

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Social Brand Identity is Fracturing – Creating Socially Friendly Brands

MediaBizBloggers, 4/21/11

Wendy Clark SVP Marketing – Coca Cola unveiled statistics at the Ad Age Digital Conference in NYC last week with profound consequences. She revealed that last year Coke tracked 146 million downloads of Coke related content on YouTube. Only 26 million of those were of Coke created content.

Over 120 million views were of content created by people not related to Coke.

These are big numbers with big meaning for all of us. So many people creating and experiencing content about Coke not created by Coke. What is Coke to do… what are we to do for our brands? It is interesting that this did not get much attention but not surprising as it upsets the applecart’s of those who think they are in charge.

According to Wendy… “We must meet people at their truth, on what is important to them and work back to ours. If I can’t connect on their truth we don’t get through.” Wendy is learning the lessons of this shift.

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Best practices for repurposing content

BtoB, 4/21/11

Creating original content for an email newsletter can make the average marketer feel a bit like Sisyphus, the Greek king who was forced to spend eternity pushing a boulder up a very steep mountain. Those marketers that need to take a break from content creation—even for a single week—can look to previously published content as a source of respite as long as they repurpose with a few best practices in mind, said Dan Forootan, CEO of email marketing provider StreamSend. “There’s no shame in reusing content, especially if you’re in a situation where your newsletter is generally known for fresh content,” he said. Forootan provided the following tips:

Use analytics to direct content replay. Many newsletters are jampacked with links and stories, many of which never get clicked on or read, Forootan said. “The ones at the top are the ones that get the most play,” he said. Evaluating email and website analytics will help marketers identify good content that readers may have missed because of its position within a template. It can also help them find stories for a “best of” newsletter—articles that were so popular they’re worth repeating. In some cases, marketers may want to create a regular section of their email newsletters dedicated to the most popular content, especially if they’re adding new subscribers on a regular basis.

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Sharing Content to Show Thought Leadership

But content creation can be time- and labor-intensive

eMarketer, 4/8/11

Creating, finding and sharing compelling content can prove to consumers that a company knows its territory, is a thought leader in its industry and wants to help customers keep up-to-date on important developments. Marketers are placing an ever-greater emphasis on content marketing’s ability to add value for targets and prospects.

According to February 2011 research from content curation firm HiveFire, nearly half of US marketing professionals surveyed are now curating content as part of their strategy, and another 42% are familiar with the practice but not participating. Even among that group, 85% had done at least some content curation, for example by sending an article or other content to a prospect, but were not aware of it.

The main objectives of content curation, according to the survey, were establishing thought leadership and improving brand buzz.

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