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Curtis Jacob
Works at Click Rain
Attended Pensacola Christian College
Lives in Rock Rapids, Iowa
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Curtis Jacob

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Another week, another candidate.  Governor Bobby Jindal stopped by Pizza Ranch in Rock Rapids today.  I must admit I am impressed.  Both he and his wife are very personable, welcoming, friendly, and appear to be on the correct side of the core issues.  
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Ben Carson made a stop in Rock Rapids today.  I am probably going to lose count of who has come to town and who hasn't before long with as many candidates that are jumping into the race this year.  But I have no problem with having lots of candidates from which to choose.  

Unlike some candidates who have no chance to get my vote whatsoever during the caucuses (+Jeb Bush for instance), Ben Carson is still on my potential list after meeting him in person.  

Now we just need to convince his team to get him onto Google+.  :)
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Online Video continues to grow.  By 2016, digital video ads are projected to reach $5 billion in revenue.  And that leads us to our big announcement of the day.....
Click Rain has acquired Paragon Videography, a video production company out of Sioux Center, Iowa, to further Click Rain’s existing service offerings in the digital marketing space.
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Have the little hashtag ribbons been removed from posts?
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Eli Fennel posted about this a couple days ago. Yes, the ribbons have been removed, but all other functionality remains.
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Welcome to Google's Swarm My Business (GSMB)!  

Google+ and Foursqaure's Swarm have not announced an agreement to produce the best of both worlds combining the gamification that was Foursquare (pre-swarm),  the location pages of Google My Business, and one's personal G+ profiles.  But what if they did?

Google has struggled to convince users that Google My Business (rebranded more times than we care to count) is an awesome product.  Meanwhile, Foursquare pretty much destroyed their product when they abandoned the #gamification aspects and created Swarm.  And although Swarm has just recently brought back some very basic aspects of the old system, it still fails to achieve much multiplayer gamification that so many desire (even if they promise to do so in an upcoming update).  

Anyone remember G+ games?  It may have failed (for multiple reasons), but the one aspect that it helped G+ with, was getting a particular group of people to start using or test out the new G+ platform.  How you get them is how you keep them, and G+ hasn't kept those people.  

So what could a gamified G+ and GMB look like?  

First of all, G+ needs a Swarm style check in app.  Could this be part of the current G+ app or should it be a totally separate one?  Either way, the app needs to be very simple in its design.  A simple home screen that lists the closest places you can check into perhaps ranked by proximity but with some leverage added to the previous places you have checked into (similar to what Swarm currently does).  
Then we take several aspects from Valve's Steam and Steam Achievements.  Although Swarm has stickers and has tried to install some meaning back into them recently, they still don't mean much beyond your own personal goals.  It feels so "single player".  Each G+ user could enable a new tab (just like their "posts", "about", "collections", "reviews", etc. tabs), that is called Swarm Achievements or simply "Swarm".   (PR may dictate a name change since the Swarm brand may be beyond repair).   On this tab, you would find your Swarm Level, various achievement accomplishments, and other highlights from one's check-ins.  Just like the old Foursquare, you could get special achievements for checking into a certain number of airports, burger joints, parks, etc.  Each of these would contribute to you overall "Level".   

Leaderboards, based on circles, and special achievements based on those leaderboards could also play a role in your levels.  Although this would bring about advertising into the G+ world, Google could offer Klout-like perks for people of certain levels.  Mayorships (foursquare's biggest mistake was removing global mayorships) could exist along with several achievements on how long you keep them or how many you have.  

Meanwhile, on the GMB side, businesses could display on their Pages, the average level of visitors that check in to their business, Who the Mayor and Vice Mayor may be, Record number of check-ins at the same time, and many other special stats.  They could encourage check-ins and post about Swarm Events, or attempts to set a check-in record.  This could also play right into AdWords Engagement ads and Events for those places that have the required number of followers to do such ads.  Perhaps business owners could also put users that check in to the business into special circles or mark those that are employees so that "real mayors" could actually with the mayorship of their business.    The increase in visitors to these pages for check-ins may encourage more reviews of an establishment, further helping Google's BMG pages.  
 
Going a step further, if one of these swarm events could also be "periscoped" via an updated version of Google Hangouts, the engagement of all aspects of Google+ would increase significantly.  

Anyway, the opportunities are endless.  This is a win/win/win scenario.  Google+ may be doing fine on its own, but it's PR battle isn't much better than foursquares at the moment.  Getting some new blood to try out G+ via gamification (which it started with and abandoned a few years ago), may be just what it needs.  
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The most successful content marketing succeeds because it doesn't appear to be marketing at all.
 
Why Your Personal Brand Should NOT Be Your First Priority

See what I found out when I talked with one of the best known personal brands in online marketing, +Brian Clark of +Copyblogger. You might be surprised.

Click below to watch our 3 minute "Here's Why" video.

#plusonly   #personalbranding  
While your personal brand is important, it should not be your only focus, or even your first priority. Mark Traphagen had a lengthy conversation with Copyblogger’s Brian Clark recently, someone who most would say has a very strong personal brand. Brian explained that you have to put your audience first. Be their hero and your personal brand will fall into place. Provide them with what they want, and sometimes what they didn’t even know they were ...
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Curtis Jacob

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In advance of Social Media Day 2015 (June 30th), we asked kids at our company picnic questions about +Click Rain and social media.

According to our informal survey, "Facebook is for sharing pictures" and "we have no idea what Twitter is."

Take a look at what our adorable 'Lil Rains had to say.
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Should we stop reinforcing stupid, arbitrary silos?

"Marketer", "analyst", "developer" - sound familiar? These labels are attached to people often thanks to their job titles, but also in order to reinforce stereotypes that help e.g. Tag Management Systems sell better. Marketer is seen as the antithesis to the developer, and the analyst shuttles between these two roles depending on if they're supporting growth in either marketing channels or within the organization. Throw in the mix "growth hackers" and "data scientists" while you're at it.

Nothing wrong with labels, but once they're used as excuses to belittle the multitude of things that can be done in digital, that's when it really bothers me. The "non-developer (read: lazy) marketer" has been the primus motor for TMS development. Equally as much as the uncooperative developer, sitting grumpily in their dungeon, sipping Jolt cola and laughing at the "stupid marketer's" requests. The "analyst" is someone who's hired for insight, but they're reduced to either solving problems between the two aforementioned parties, or to tweaking lazily installed GA implementations.

Seriously, all you need to do is look into an organization that's doing it right to see that these labels are ridiculous. The true, modern, digital employee is a hybrid. They are forced to think outside silos because they've understood that a holistic, contextual view is what drives growth. Not "just marketing", or plug-and-play analytics, or some legacy-burdened, development-driven framework.

So, please. Can we stop being apologetic for the "non-developer marketer", the "emotionally detached developer", and the "data-driven analyst". That way maybe people can become more ambitious and strive towards a more multi-disciplined approach, which is what today's digital landscape requires.
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Interesting, can anyone guess who is at #1?
An overwhelming majority of college students must pay most if not all, of their tuition out of pocket. Taking financial assistance out of the incentive equation means replacing it with another variable. The revised formula includes improved and expanded social activities, especially those connected to aquatics. A rapidly growing number of colleges and universities are …
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Rick Perry came to town today.  Another possible candidate for President that hasn't declared one way or the other yet.  Unfortunately, I was unable to attend the event.  
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You can't be afraid to talk about the things your sales people don't want you to talk about!  Those are the things your prospective customers want to learn.

+Marcus Sheridan from +The Sales Lion explains how a good content strategy can build trust with your prospective (and current) customers before you even "meet" them. 
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I am amazed at how often people think all new apps and networks must automatically have millions of extremely active users and mirror facebook in order to be "alive."  This cultural mentality makes creating new things tougher and tougher from a PR perspective.
 
Google Plus: Small But Not Dead Yet!

As I say in the opening of my latest column for +Marketing Land, this is the post I hoped I'd never have to write again.

I wrote this one neither to praise Google+ nor to bury it (sorry, Shakespeare!), but rather to try to correct what I see as some possible misunderstandings and misrepresentations about the current status and near-future of Google+. 

Particularly, if you've heard or read that Google+ is being "split up" or "dismantled," you need to read this post.

Let me know what you think about my take!

#googleplus   #plusonly  
Despite the "near death" rumors, Google+ still has plenty of life left, and Google has no current plans to dismember it, believes columnist Mark Traphagen.
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A very good point +Curtis Jacob 
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Curtis's Collections
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Have him in circles
389 people
Collegiate Scouting's profile photo
Richard Claessens's profile photo
Softball Rampage's profile photo
Randy Page's profile photo
Gregory Budiman's profile photo
Jacque Frick's profile photo
Jackie Johnson's profile photo
Bryan Burgers's profile photo
Ryan Hanley's profile photo
Collections Curtis is following
Education
  • Pensacola Christian College
    Communications/Broadcasting, 1994 - 1998
  • Zanesville Christian School
    K-12 - High School Diploma, 1981 - 1994
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Relationship
Married
Story
Tagline
Gray only exists because we have not taken the time to determine the black and white of the situation.
Introduction

I was born in 1975 on the edge of the Appalachian region in the small city of Zanesville, Ohio. I went to both a Private K-12 School and a Private College.

I graduated with a degree in Communications of which I had a concentration in Broadcasting and a Minor in History.

I have lived in large (Tampa, FL), small (Zanesville, OH), and rural (Rock Rapids, IA) areas and visited 45 states and two Canadian provinces.

I enjoy various hobbies, such as collecting GI Joe ARAH figures and comic books, web design/codingHardy Boys Casefiles, and playing and umpiring softball.

I married Gwendolyn (Fluker) Jacob on Saturday, January 8, 2005. Tasha G. Jacob was born a month early on Saturday, October 1, 2005. Connor W. Jacob was born almost two months early on May 13, 2010.

I am currently involved in marketing in the area of website analytics, seo, ppc, and social media. I have been Google AdWords and Analytics Qualified

Work
Occupation
Marketing
Skills
AdWords, Search Engine Optimization, Analytics, Google+
Employment
  • Click Rain
    Online Marketing Strategist, 2012 - present
  • Sioux Falls Softball
    ASA Slow Pitch Softball Umpire, 2012 - 2014
  • Alpha Omega Publications
    PPC, Analytics, and SEO Specialist, 2005 - 2012
  • West Gate Baptist Church
    Marketing, Web Engineer, Teaching, 2004 - 2005
  • Accelerated Christian Education
    Audio/Video Technician, 2003 - 2004
  • PRG Promotions, Inc.
    Web Engineer, 2002 - 2003
  • City of Zanesville
    ASA Slow Pitch Softball Umpire, 1995 - 2005
  • State of Ohio - Dillon State Park
    Camp Store Clerk, 2001 - 2002
  • Corbett/Mock Cabinet Co.
    Office Manager, 2000 - 2000
  • Shaw Video Communications
    Videographer, 1998 - 2000
  • City of Zanesville
    Lunch Coordinator, 1998 - 1998
  • City of Zanesville
    Food Monitor, 1997 - 1997
  • City of Zanesville
    Playground Leader, 1995 - 1996
  • A Beka Video
    QC Operator, 1994 - 1998
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Rock Rapids, Iowa
Previously
Tampa, Florida - Largo, Florida - Zanesville, Ohio