Friday, April 15, 2011

Employee Committees

Employee Committees

Prior to launching a new product or signing into a partnership with an outside company, I propose that we establish a committee of ground-level employees, those that would be working with/selling/utilizing the products or services on a daily basis, to hold a “pros and cons” session. To determine who would be placed in each individual committee, we could send out an email companywide or to all members of the affected department to request volunteers that are proficient in the particular subject or field. For example, if the product under consideration were Matchbin, an email would go out to all JRC advertising representatives and ad managers that have knowledge of search engine optimization. If the product in question was a social media plug-in for our newspaper websites, the email could go out to all JRC employees in search of volunteers that are “experts” in social media.


  • Ground-level employees may be able to anticipate issues and/or inconsistencies prior to signing a commitment or launching the product.
  • Expedited training – Since there would already be a group of employees that are familiar with the products prior to launch, they can assist in training efforts at the local or regional level.
  • Reduced re-training – Often we figure out the full details after the launch of a partnership or product, which sometimes requires re-training for reps later on. For those employees that may be still struggling to learn digital, this causes unnecessary frustration and can be counterproductive to their learning.
  • Increased Buy-In – By giving more employees the opportunity to be involved in the decision making process and utilizing their personal strengths, it will reinforce their commitment to the Digital First initiative.
So let's start here. 
Any thoughts, suggestions, recommendations and/or predictions on Employee Committees?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

SUCCESS! Slow and steady wins the race...

Just two months after the launch of our OP Marketing & Social Media Blog (an earlier ideaLab project that I apparently failed to blog about...), we're celebrating some small successes. 

To backtrack a bit, the blog was designed as an SEO experiment and indirect sales tool for advertising reps. Using Search Engine Optimized keywords, the posts are built to both offer free marketing advice from the sales reps and indirectly promote relevant OP products. For example, the post that discusses using geography to target the most relevant customers is immediately followed by a post featuring Yahoo! Geo-targeted advertising

And then to drive traffic to the site, we compiled an e-mail list of current and prospective advertisers to send out a monthly Marketing Tips e-blast. Our first e-blast (which was officially sent out to advertisers yesterday), featured some clips from current posts and will redirect users to the site to read the full article. The e-blasts themselves won't actually contain any form of advertising or promotions; it's simply to offer marketing tips to our advertisers and to drive traffic back to the blog (and thus, the indirect sales tool).

And now onto our successes...

On Sunday, January 30th (happy birthday to me...), a user entered our blog from Google on the organic search term "Marketing Workshop Oakland", landing on a post from January 18th featuring an invitation to our free SEO seminar to promote Matchbin products, just in time to sign up for the workshop!
Then just this week I noticed that another user entered the site on the search term "geo targeted advertising". Out of curiousity, I then Googled "geo targeted advertising" to find our blog nestled comfortably on the first page of search results! According to Google's free keyword tool, that particular term is searched approximately 170 times per month on average. So what does that mean for us? Potentially 170 new Yahoo! customers!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

30 Days of Tools & Training

In addition to my upcoming "Senior Central" project, I've been tasked to choose a free digital tool to master and then teach to an audience of my peers. So I've narrowed the list down to the three products that interest me most: 

XtraNormal - Text-to-Movie ("I don't care")
myQR - A QR code generator with built-in analytics
hootsuite - Social Media Manager/Scheduler

Any suggestions?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

QR Codes for Advertising ~ Part 2

My first advertising QR code finally went to print. Though I'm still searching for the MECARD + Analytics generator, this has opened up some avenues for non-traditional advertisers. 

Any thoughts on tracking scans?