Do you really need web marketing to sell your product? Yes.

Marketing has changed since the turn of the century. Where billboards and print advertisements once ruled and email was just a passing fancy, we are now immersed in social media, apps and mobile technology. It’s these new methods of communication that have determined how marketing professionals now reach their audiences.

The simple answer as to whether web marketing is key to selling your product is a resounding yes. In fact, no is not an option. This is because the customer’s purchasing  journey has changed.

Do you really need web marketing? Yes

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Five easy online marketing mistakes and how to avoid them

The world of online marketing moves so fast that it can be rather easy to slip up and make some honest mistakes. Repeating mistakes can be disastrous, though. Picking up on some vital signs will steer you in the right direction. Here are 5 common mistakes you may not be aware of, and how to avoid them.

Assuming results or taking things for granted

“Never assume” is the golden rule of the internet. Everything across the web needs to be taken with a pinch of salt — particularly the numbers. Companies like to bulk up their social media presence as much as possible with likes and followers. Clicks are championed as a webpage’s success but it is unique visitors and returning visitors that will determine whether your site is a success or not. Knee jerk reactions to the numbers won’t do you any favours. In-depth analysis of your data can be time consuming but ultimately rewarding.
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Our clients in the news: City votes to up Arts Council funding

The City of Toronto voted last week to increase arts funding by almost 50% (from $17 to $25 per capita) by 2013. Even councilors who have traditionally been reticent to fund the arts voted in favour.

This, I’m sure, is great news for Fruition client Toronto Arts Council, who are the City’s go-to agency for providing funding to arts creators in a way that’s free of political interference, along with the hundreds of arts organizations that they fund.

In addition to the promise of extra dollars, the Arts Council also received this lovely shout-out:

The debate didn’t faze Camilla Holland, co-chair of ArtsVote, who says that kind of tension is part of the process and that there’s an arbitrator for all this. “It’s an excellent organization that has a very fair, transparent and arm’s-length process, and that’s the Toronto Arts Council.”

Coverage in NOW Magazine

Coverage in the Toronto Star

Is the REAL Influence Project?

Last week I wrote about the negative buzz that Fast Comany created with their Influence Project (nope, not feeding them another link) and the backlash from actual prominent influencers.

To quickly recap: with the Influence Project, FC is asking people to sign up to receive a personalized link to the FC Web site. Particpants send the link to their circle and ask them to click on the link. Each click counts as a vote, the most clicks wins “Most Influential Person Online” and gets on the cover of Fast Company. Critics, myself included, dismissed the project as a vapid attempt to milk people’s egos in order to generate more clicks (and therefore more revenue) and more links ( and therefore higher page rank and therefore more long term clicks) for the publisher.

It was the utter meaninglessness of the whole exercise that really got under people’s skin.

I think I’ve fou d the antidote or at least a really cool alternative way to leverage your online influence AND create some meaning in the world. It’s called

JustCoz Model

Co-founded byJeff Pulver, whose mega-resume includes co-founding VOiP pioneer Vonage, asks participants to use their influence to spread the word for a cause or charity of their choosing throughout their community.

Here’s how it works:

Cause-based organizations — they need to be using Twitter as part of their communication strategy — register with JustCoz and create a listing to be posted to the Web site.

Would-be influencers register with the site and choose a cause from the listings. From there, manages the day-to-day mechanics of retweeting one message a day from the cause to your Twitter account.

It’s simple, it’s sweet. And best of all it’s a meaningful way to use your influence online. I think that’s worth a magazine cover.

Mobile Fundraising 101

Rachel Foster at Fresh Perspectives has published an interview with me that she did earlier this year. It’s designed to give non-profits an overview of the opportunities and challenges they’ll encounter as they consider a mobile fund-raising strategy:

The relief efforts in Haiti and Chile confirmed that organizations can raise a lot of money in a short amount of time through mobile fundraising. It provides immediacy - a donor receives a call to action and responds right away. Donors may not have access to their computers or the Internet when they’re exposed to your fund-raising message - watching TV, listening to the radio, seeing a billboard or reading a newspaper - but they probably have their mobiles within arm’s reach.

Fundraising Article | Mobile Fundraising 101.

New study : non-profit use of mobile messaging

mobileactive and M+R have teamed up to deliver the first ever study of non-profit use of mobile messaging for fundraising, advocacy and more.

Some quick conclusions:

  • the churn rate for mobile subscriber lists is higher than for email
  • response rates for both fundraising and advocacy appeals can be substantially higher for text messaging than for other media like email marketing
  • merging subscriber data from opt-in email lists is the most common and effective way for non-profits to grow their mobile lists

Download the full study and view a summary at

How Non-Profits and Activists Can Leverage Location Based Services

Although most Canadian non-profits are just starting to get their feet wet with social media, online fund-raising and mobile applications, location-based services are probably not on their radar here to the same extent they are Stateside.

This article from Mashable is a pretty good prompt to think about ways location-aware apps might help with fund-raising and on-the-ground organizing. For fund-raising, I’m especially intrigued by CauseWorld.

How Non-Profits and Activists Can Leverage Location Based Services (from Mashable)

[email protected] - 5 steps to a great eNewsletter

The new Fruition Interactive [email protected] newsletter is out. In this issue:

* Feature: 5 simple steps to creating compelling e-newsletters
* The brag: new clients, new projects
* New service: increase your ROI with Strategic Insite™
* Quick tip: keep it simple for Web success
* New subscriber contest: tell a friend and win
* Winner!: congratulations to our newsletter giveaway winner

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Ideas @ Work: 3 ½ ways great online experience can help you now

The Fall 2009 Fruition Interactive [email protected] newsletter is out now. In this issue:

* Upgrade your Web site’s usability, enhance your bottom line
* The brag: new clients, new projects, new team members
* Find better results with Fruition’s search marketing services
* Quick Tip: upgrade from Internet Explorer 6 for a better Web
* New subscriber contest: Tell a friend and win

Read it now >