6 Tips for Effective Email Campaign

In his book The Direct Mail Solution, direct marketing expert and entrepreneur Craig Simpson provides easy-to-follow solutions for creating direct mail campaigns that work! In this edited excerpt, the author discusses the six things your direct mail pieces must contain in order to get people to visit your website.

If you want to build your online business, research shows that one of the best ways to do it is to use direct mail to drive prospects to your site. It’s the combination of direct mail with an online presence that packs such a powerful marketing punch.

Even Google, probably one of the iconic internet businesses, sends out direct-mail campaigns. It uses a sales piece sent by physical mail to offer prospects $100 worth of free PPC advertising. By mailing these offers directly to people’s homes or offices, it’s able to reach a different audience than it does with its online efforts.

And this kind of promotion works. People put greater trust in information they receive by mail, and they’re more likely to read physical mail than email, which often gets deleted without being looked at. Direct mail must work because the great marketing minds at Google wouldn’t use it if it weren’t profitable.

If you think that using direct mail in conjunction with the Internet holds promise for your business, here are some points to keep in mind so you can make the most of this powerful combination.

1. An intriguing message. The message in your direct mail piece must capture prospects’ attention and interest to such a degree that they’ll stop whatever it is they’re doing and go online to visit your website. The mail piece itself won’t be very long, so it has to pack a very powerful punch in minimal words. You need a headline that immediately arouses curiosity and promises some kind of benefit. Then you have to offer them an excellent reason to go to the site: They’ll receive a coupon or a free report; they’ll get to watch a video that will reveal some big secret that will make their life better. Motivate them to take the action you want.

The piece itself must look effortless, but writing it requires quite a bit of savvy. So put some work into coming up with a message that will move people to act.

2. A clear call to action. Now that you’ve got your prospects’ attention and they’re ready to act, you have to provide them with a crystal clear call to action. What you want them to do is visit the site. Don’t provide them with any alternative actions, and don’t make them struggle to find your web address. People’s attention spans are very short, and if they have to go hunting for the information, they’ll get annoyed or distracted. You want to keep them positive and moving in the right direction. Make the next step clear and easy to follow.

3. An easy URL. Prospects going from a direct-mail piece to a website must type in the URL themselves. It’s not like they can just click on a link. So you don’t want a URL that’s complicated, has an odd spelling or is too long. And you want it to be memorable so that if they’re not near their computer when they read your sales piece, they’ll be able to remember it when they need it.

4. An incentive to opt in. One of the most critical reasons for getting your prospects to the site is to capture their contact information. You want them to opt in. But they won’t do it unless you provide them with a good reason to do it. Maybe for opting in they’ll receive a bonus of some kind, or they’ll receive some valuable information. It’s important that you keep your opt-in web page copy short with clean directions on how to opt in. Some of the best opt-in pages have only ten words on them. Keep it simple, and keep the instructions clear.

5. A compelling sales page. Once prospects have opted in and arrived at your sales page, you want them to be willing to read your letter, watch your video or do whatever it is you’ve set up for them. So the page has to be attractive, interesting and easy to read, with lists of benefits that can be seen at a glance.

6. A coordinated message.For a successful campaign, you should have consistent branding and messaging. All the pieces should coordinate with one another and present one clear message and call to action. If your sales piece is whimsical, there should be a whimsical quality to your website. If your message is serious, all the pieces should be serious. The look of the direct mail piece and the website should be similar. Of course, the offer and the call to action should be in agreement across all the different media.

With all the pieces in place and working together, you will increase the chances of a favorable response.

Resource by :

Effective SEO, SEO, SEO Executive India, SEO Expert India

Links are not Causes, It Effects

An important point to remember when building links for search engine optimization (SEO), and when thinking about link building strategies and tactics, is that links are effects. Links are not causes.

Links are the outcome of an originating principle or strategy: to market a website online, to build influence, to introduce a differentiator, and to provide value. Done correctly and well, these concepts drive attention in the form of traffic, notoriety, and, yes, backlinks from other websites.

Links are the effects, the outcomes, of value. Securing links is not the means or the ends in itself; links are merely symbolic of the means and ends. Why, then, do companies and consultants continually try to “build links” as if they’re collecting gold nuggets? As if links are the be-all and end-all of SEO?

Yes, links drive SEO. They’re a foundational component of the work. But the place to start is not by asking, “How can we build lots of links?” The place to begin is by asking, “How can we do something cool online that people will love? How can we provide something valuable?”

Early last year I told you to “Quit Obsessing On Anchor Text.” Now I’m telling you to quit obsessing on backlinks.

A real backlink strategy isn’t about links at all, but about content, social, and promotional strategies that will engage people. A real backlink strategy will investigate everything about a company’s assets and how they can be leveraged and expanded to create more awareness. What is the end result of more awareness and influence online? You got it: it’s links.

Now, some of you kind readers will argue that links are in fact causes: causes of ranks. How can links be only “effects” if they are the most important factor in how rankings are achieved? My answer is simple: they have historically been a primary cause of rankings, but that game is changing fast. Yes, links still push rankings best right now (with big changes post- Panda and Penguin). How do you get those crucial links, then? By remembering that links are effects and not causes. Links validate a site’s ranking position or visibility online. What do links to a very poor page or site get you? Short-term rankings and no real business model. It’s not about the ranking, after all. It’s about the value of that ranking to the visitor.

Links are effects, not causes. Links reflect influence, value, and popularity online. Penguin showed us how a lopsided obsession on securing links and exact match anchors as the means and ends of inbound marketing saddles SEO campaigns and drives down results and revenues.


Google Launches Knowledge Graph, ‘First Step in Next Generation Search’

Have you ever had a question pop into your head at an unexpected time? Maybe when you’re talking with a friend over lunch, watching TV at home, or reading a magazine on the bus? On smartphones and tablets Google is great for these types of situations because it puts the information of the entire web at your fingertips. Today, we’re making it even faster and easier to get answers and explore no matter where you are, with the launch of the Knowledge Graph on desktop, smartphones, and tablets.

On wireless networks and on small screens, every page load and every pixel matters when it comes to speed and ease-of-use. So we strive for efficiency and try to make the most of touch-based interactions when integrating information from Knowledge Graph into our mobile and tablet search experiences.

For example, say this fall I’m heading to Chicago for a friend’s wedding, and I’ve heard I should check out Millennium Park while I’m in town. A quick search on Google brings up Knowledge Graph information embedded within the results. This initial peek shows what people are often interested in about Millennium Park.

Tapping or swiping on the content from the Knowledge Graph instantly shows me more useful information. I can see if there’s an event going on while I’m in town, and get some ideas for other Chicago attractions I might want to visit based on what other people have searched for on Google.

When searching on my tablet, I can swipe the rows of images to explore more related content.

Now let’s take another example. Say I’m searching for [andromeda], which could be the galaxy, theTV series, or the Swedish band. The Knowledge Graph distinguishes between each of these meanings and shows me an interactive ribbon at the top of the search results that I can swipe and tap to select just what I’m looking for. That means less typing.

These features are currently rolling out to most Android 2.2+ and iOS4+ devices. On Android, the feature is available through Google in the browser and the Quick Search Box. On iOS, the feature is available in the browser and will be coming soon to the Google Search App.


With Google Drive, you can:

1. Create and collaborate
2. Store everything safely and access it anywhere (especially while on the go).
3. Search everything

You can get started with 5GB of storage for free—that’s enough to store the high-res photos of your trip to the Mt. Everest, scanned copies of your grandparents’ love letters or a career’s worth of business proposals, and still have space for the novel you’re working on. You can choose to upgrade to 25GB for $2.49/month, 100GB for $4.99/month or even 1TB for $49.99/month. When you upgrade to a paid account, your Gmail account storage will also expand to 25GB.

Read More Here

Google Search, Google: SEO

Google SEO And Semantic Search

Keywords have always been the foundation of any SEO campaign even with the latest algorithm updates like Panda and Search, plus Your World. With these new changes, the basic principles of SEO are still valid by having relevant targeted keywords in title tags, headings, and landing page content. However Google is always looking at new ways to provide searchers with a better, more relevant experience.

According to a recent article from The Wall Street Journal, Google announced plans to raise the bar even more by moving to a semantic search technology, which, according to Amit Singhal from Google, will take the experience to a higher level:

“Google Inc. GOOG is giving its tried-and-true Web-search formula a makeover as it tries to fix the shortcomings of today’s technology and maintain its dominant market share.

Over the next few months, Google’s search engine will begin spitting out more than a list of blue Web links. It will also present more facts and direct answers to queries at the top of the search-results page.”

While this sounds like a new direction, Google and other search engines have been trying to provide search results based on intent for some time with location-based search, universal search, and other methods.

What Is Semantic Search?

Semantic search is the process of understanding the meaning of keywords people use and matching it to their intent. Before semantic search, the results could not differentiate between individual phrases like “Saturn” the planet and the automobile brand “Saturn.” With semantic search, artificial intelligence is used to understand the actual meaning of words, the relationship between multiple word phrases, and the searcher’s intent. Armed with this approach, search engines can provide more relevant search results, thus offering a better user experience.

Knowledge Graph

According to Google, it provides good search results only if there are landing pages that include keywords from the search query. Google doesn’t really understand the query but attempts to match the keywords from the query. Google can answer questions like “How tall is Mount Everest?” However it cannot seem to go beyond simple facts. Notice the answer to the question is now built into the search engine results page (SERP) as “best guess” and that it is based on information from other sites.


To overcome this dependency, Google is building “a huge knowledge graph of interconnected entities and their attributes.” This graph is a database of structured information that is pulled from the web. As it grows with more and more entities, it will help to understand searchers’ queries and provide answers to more complex questions.

This knowledge graph will be the support system for Google’s semantic search efforts and will help Google to answer questions itself, instead of relying on other websites.

Semantic Search and SEO

So you may ask yourself what this means to the future of SEO. One thing to consider is that you will not only be competing with others for ranking in the SERPs but also Google since it will pull its results from its own source and not from other websites.

Another aspect is the emphasis you put on keyword research. You not only have to understand the meaning and context around your keywords, you also need to develop specific content around those words that match the right intent. Most people place a lot of emphasis around keyword search volume. That only shows how often the keyword is searched on but doesn’t provide any insight into the context or intent of what the searcher might be looking for. You will need to look at other factors to help you gather that insight.

To help you better understand what a person means when they use a keyword you should frame the keyword into a question that breaks down several options on what the intent is. For instance, if someone searches for “mountain bike,” what they are trying to answer might be:

  • What is a mountain bike?
  • Where can I get a mountain bike?
  • What are the different brands/models of mountain bikes?
  • How can I compare different mountain bikes?
  • How can I fix a mountain bike?

I could go on and on but I am at least getting closer to understanding what the intent might be. So to do SEO in the semantic search world you need to go beyond just keyword popularity, you need to answer the question: what is the searcher’s intent?

As you conduct your keyword research you should weigh keyword factors other than just search volume. You can look at relevance, competition, intent modeling, persona mapping, etc., which will add more dimension to your keywords.

Also, social media is a great tool for placing context to keywords. With many social media tools you can type in a search term and get a list of tweets and posts that are part of a conversation. Seeing the keyword used in a conversation will give you some better insight on intent.

As semantic search evolves more in the future it will become more and more important to focus on picking the right keywords based on user intent and mapping them to relevant content.

Originally post viewed on Clickz

United Nations, New York, 6 April 2012 – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon believes young people everywhere deserve the power to get information, to connect and to ask hard questions. Join a live Google+ Hangout with Ban Ki-moon, Google’s David Drummond and young people around the world on Tuesday, 10 April 2012, at 3:30 pm EST.

Google has been updating and using the “Hangouts” feature of Google+ quite a bit lately. Fromunderwater hangouts, to answering developer questions, to launching geeky web channels, it’s clear that Google thinks Hangouts is a feature of their social network that can compete with Facebook. And with the Hangouts API out of preview, developers can now use it and implement it into things not even Google can think of.

In the spirit of the Digg Dialogg and the Reddit AMA, Google will be hosting a Hangout with United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. From the Google blog:

We’re passionate about changing the world. But there’s another organization that’s equally passionate—and has been doing it a lot longer. For more than 60 years, the United Nations has worked to advance a global agenda on ending war and poverty, promoting human rights, protecting the environment and dealing with humanitarian crises—critical issues that will determine the quality of life for future generations to come.

So we’re delighted that on Tuesday, April 10, some of the voices of the next generation will have the chance to participate in an exclusive global conversation with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon via a Google+ Hangout from the United Nations headquarters in New York.

Unfortunately, though, the interview won’t be as crowd-sourced as those other internet interviews I mentioned. But six lucky “young people” from the United States, Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America will have the opportunity to ask the Secretary-General Questions. The blog post stated the young people were selected “in consultation with partners in civil society, academia and United Nations offices in the field.”

So, even though you can’t join the Hangout yourself, it will certainly be interesting to hear the types of questions young people from vastly different regions around the world have for the leader of the UN. You can watch the Hangout streaming live tomorrow, April 10, at 3:3o pm EDT. The event will be streamed on YouTube at


Study Says: Pinterest Could Be Key for Retailers

Pinterest is now the third most popular social networking site in the U.S. and could help foster “meaningful connections” between retailers and cons

umers. That’s according to a lengthy new 2012 Digital Marketer report from Experian.

Retailers should also consider advertising on Facebook. The report found that retail advertisers saw conversion rates of almost 50 percent through Facebook ad campaigns in 2011.

According to Experian, Pinterest attracted 21.5 million visits in the week ending January 28, 2012 – nearly 30 times the number of total visits six mont

hs before. As reported by other firms, Pinterest skews female; 60 percent of the site’s users are women, and 55 percent are between the ages of 25 and 44, according to Experian.

Californians and Texans made up the largest share of visits to the site, and its users overindex in visits from Midwestern, Northwestern, and Southeastern states.

“This data indicates that Pinterest visitors have a different profile versus their counterparts visiting other social networking sites such as Facebook a

nd YouTube,” notes the report.

Pinterest users post photos of “Products They Love,” from L.K. Bennett shoes and Kate Spade purses to iPhone cases, laptop bags, and Reyka Vodka. So, it’s no surprise Experian sees the site as full of potential for retail marketing. “As communities become less about friends and more about common interests, retail brands in particular need to take note if they want to make more meaningful connections with their customers,” the company states.

Retail brands that ran at least four ad campaigns on Facebook in 2011 drew some of the highest conversion rates as measured by Experian. Retail Facebook ads resulted in a 49 percent conversion rate, compared to 40 percent for travel advertisers and 58 percent for consumer goods brands. In contrast, auto brand ads on Facebook generated just 18 percent conversion.

Facebook ads can be a “significant source” of company site traffic, added the report.