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The Site Vamp
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Delta Airlines has a sense of humor...WHAT?

On May 25, 2015, Delta Airlines became the coolest airline on the internet. How, you ask? By paying homage to the internet’s most beloved characters and memes in their newest safety video. They call it, “The Internetest Safety Video on the Internet”. Before you read any further, click the link and watch the video below. Trust me, it is worth the six minutes and seven seconds.

Done? Good. While this video is extremely entertaining and engaging, it got me thinking about where we might be going with advertisements and such.

The video’s popularity can be attributed to the fact that everyone who has been a passenger with Delta Airlines since May 25th has seen it. Since then, the video has gained over 5.5 million views. To put this into perspective, I got that number after watching it three days after its release. 5.5 million views in three days. How are YOUR videos doing?

Some have dismissed the video as a lame attempt to be “hip” or “cool” with the internet. However, those individuals neglect to understand that the memes presented in the video are tremendously popular. Their viewers are no longer limited to only hip internet users aged 16-23 or whatever. Get over yourselves. Everyone (well, mostly everyone) has seen them and are familiar with them. Given this, I say it is a progressive step in a new direction for marketers.

Using such familiar material shows both a step forward and backward in social media marketing. It is a step forward because they had tried something new and different, leading to a huge success. The step backward is the most interesting to me, though.

Internet users are constantly bombarded with ads. Most of these are aiming to be fresh. New. The next big thing. It makes sense, given the rapidly-changing society that we live in today. It seems advertisers are looking to be two steps ahead of the times with their content, especially on the internet. Delta has done the opposite. They have taken a step back and used cultural phenomena that we already know. People recognize and understand it. And that is why their video is so successful.

Now, I’m not saying you should go hire Double Rainbow Guy or Doge to talk about how cool your business is. I am, however, suggesting that as business owners we can learn from this trend. What if consumers need a break from constant progression? What if our ads become more relatable? I say it is time we follow Delta’s lead and take a break from that constant change. At least for a while. Slow down and let consumers catch up. Doing so could lead to dramatically increased exposure and appreciation for your business.

By: Alec England, Columnist, Centerlyne

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Times are changing. They have been since social media became a thing. But they might be REALLY changing now. For years, Facebook has been synonymous with social media, often being the most favored and widely used social media service in the world. While they may have their hands in multiple other social media services, Facebook itself might soon suffer a loss in usage.

Piper Jaffray, an investment bank, released a survey last Tuesday (April 14) that showed exactly this. In the survey, individuals aged 13-17 were surveyed on their opinions of the most “important” social network.

14% of them cited Facebook as the most “important”.

Compared to other networks, this puts them in third behind Instagram (#1, 32%) and Twitter (#2, 24%). Compared to past surveys taken by the same firm regarding the same topic, preference for Facebook has fallen the sharpest (14%) since spring 2013.

While we are taking into account only one source on the topic, it still suggests that a big change has either already happened or could be happening very soon. In short, Instagram is climbing while Facebook is falling. While this can suggest many things, one thing keeps coming up in my mind.

Simplicity is key. Instagram is simple to use and simply displayed. Users can access it on their phones, while the content they see is limited to photos, a location, and comments. Nothing else. Facebook allows for much more. But that “much more” might be what is driving people away. It could be too much information or too many complications with using it. Like I have said time and time again: keep it simple. Keep your content simple, keep your promotions simple, keep your presence simple. No one uses social media with the intent of being bombarded with information. The more accessible and easy to understand your content is, the more users will gravitate towards your business.

By: Alec England, Columnist, Centerlyne

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Google+ is done. But I don’t mean its “dead” or anything like that.

It was announced about a month ago that Google+ as we know it is being split into two separate services: Streams and photos. While the split may bring more confusion to users, it is very important as social media marketers to keep up with the change and to learn from it.
While many experts in the social media world have called this the beginning of the official end of Google+, it is important that we do not jump to conclusions just yet.

As of now, Google+ is still technically running. But it seems weird that one of the “top social media sites in the world” is suddenly failing. Why? To me, it all boils down to one key trait of Google+: strict usage guidelines.

Google+ was very insistent on many things. For example, there is no changing your username. It must always be your real, official name. There are ways around this, but who cares enough about that to make an entirely new Google account just to have a different username? In addition, there was only one method of sharing on their service. Users were only able to log in to their service’s desktop or mobile app. There was no option to share through a browser extension or social media management dashboard. Users could not share in a social manner to their social media service, though it was promoted as an all encompassing facebook-twitter-instagram.

While we have posted articles encouraging Google+ use in the past, this occurrence teaches us a lesson. Hopefully, you will have learned the same. Some experts have used the old adage, “don’t put all of your eggs in one basket”. Sure, this makes sense considering all of the marketers and users that solely used Google+. But I feel that Google+’s shortcomings can be applied to businesses using any social media service.

Google+ put restrictions on their users’ ability to customize or express themselves. It was a social media site that wasn’t very social at all. People use social media because of its convenience to communicate and express. Google+ promised that, but never really fulfilled that promise. What does your business look like on social media? Are your followers communicating with you? More importantly, are you replying? Are you giving them answers to their questions or thanking them for their kind words? I can tell you right now, nothing looks worse for a business than seeing a list of unanswered questions from their followers. It puts a separation between your business and your customers.

It seemed that most Google+ users didn’t really feel comfortable using their service. The restrictions and difficulty to use it all contributed to a declining number of users. My advice would be to apply this to your business’ presence on social media. Take the time (its not that much time at all) to make your followers feel comfortable. Appreciated. Listened to. Failure to do so would surely lead your followers to leave.

By: Alec England, Columnist, Centerlyne


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We all know what YouTube is. It doesn’t really need any explanation. Ask anyone from 7 to 107 years old and they will all tell you the same thing: watching YouTube videos is fun (people tend to grow out of their YouTube phase at 108). Not only is it fun, but it is incredibly convenient, easy to use, and it includes a ridiculously vast range of video types and topics.

But you already knew that.

What most people don’t know is how much “muscle” comes with YouTube marketing. And I am not talking about annoying paid advertisements you see before you watch a video. I am talking about raw, organic, unpaid marketing. While it might take a while to get the ball rolling with your audience, the following you build is much more likely to remain loyal and interact with you than those who find you through paid promotions. There are many reasons why consistent organic marketing is preferred among YouTube and its users, but it is their affiliation with Google that sets YouTube apart from other social media sites in terms of organic advertising.

YouTube was created in February 2005. One year and nine months later, Google bought it. Since then, YouTube has operated as a subsidiary of Google. Because of this, Google benefits from YouTube usage. And since YouTube consistently ranks among the top three most successful subsidiaries out of their 178 total, there is no reason that they would ever dream of letting YouTube go.

When people in the field of social media marketing think of Google, they think of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). The main goal behind SEO is to get a website, be it yours or a client’s, on the front page of the search results of any given search engine. This can be done in many different ways, but the way that applies here has to do with web traffic. Put simply, the more traffic your website gets, the more Google is going to want to put your website up on their front page when users search for relevant keywords.

Just like linking your Facebook posts back to your website adds to your social media presence, uploading YouTube videos adds to your search engine presence. Since Google benefits directly from YouTube searches and hits, they will put your video up when users search using similar keywords. If your video is keyworded to be relevant to what a particular user is looking for and it is linked back to your website, you can bet that that user will follow the link to your website and that your website will become that much more familiar to Google. Put this example in a real life, millions of searches scenario, and you have yourself an effective marketing campaign at no monetary cost to you.

By: Alec England, Columnist, Centerlyne


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You wouldn’t send in an incomplete resume to an employer. You would never put a picture of that funny thing you did at that party on your business card. You wouldn’t dream of telling an employer that you are an inexperienced, nameless, faceless, ageless, ambitionless grey cutout of a person, right? Okay, maybe I am getting a bit too specific. But what I am trying to illustrate here is that while no one in their right mind would ever do these things when looking for a job, they often do these things with their LinkedIn profiles.

Some may think that nothing can replace face-to-face interviews. This may be true, but they often forget that more and more employers are in fact turning to social media in order to gather information about potential employees before the first interview. Times are changing, and keeping up to date on your LinkedIn profile is getting more and more crucial to your career’s success by the day.

It may seem obvious what you need to do in order to keep your profile up to date- fill in the blanks and update whatever professional things you have done. But there are two key things that make success via LinkedIn much more likely.

1. Attention to Keywords

Be precise with this. LinkedIn gives you the ability to include a summary on your profile. Don’t fill it up with “I am a graduate of [college] with a degree in [major]. I am proficient at SEO and social media marketing. Recently, I have been learning to code alongside starting my own snack foods business, Krakerz Deelux. Look me up at my website or give me a call at [number] if you are interested in working with me!”

NO. First off, the tone that comes with “I am” and “I have been” is very unprofessional. Second, potential employers do not care and do not have the time to read through your essay of information. Get to the point. “[Name], [school], [degree], [location]. SEO, social media marketing, HTML and Wordpress, entrepreneur, Youtuber, blogger, marketing consultant”, etc. Doing your summary this way not only makes it easier for employers to understand what you have to offer, but it also makes it easier for search engines to index your profile whenever someone searches for a blogger who can write HTML and lives in a nearby area.

2. Keep your content interesting

I know this can be hard, especially when the atmosphere is very professional and straightforward. I am not telling you to post about the latest construction project you did with “There I was, hammer in hand, looking at the towering wall above me that I had just completed. I remembered my childhood and contemplated my future…”. This is mostly about “click bait”. How do you make someone want to click the link read more about that project you did? Make the headline interesting. Don’t title the post with something like “Recent Project” or “Finished House”. What you decide to put in your headlines is up to you, but I personally would go with something like “Splinters and Smiles: Making a House a Home”. Give it something that shows that you are enthusiastic about your work. That you are proud of it. No one wants to work with someone that hates what they do.

By: Alec England, Columnist, The Site Vamp


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