IMA 52-Week Webinar Series

We’re excited to announce the imminent launch of the IMA 52 Week Webinar Series. These quick, impactful webinars feature the latest in Internet marketing tips and techniques from our global partners.

Topics included in the initial launch include training on how to use stories to inexpensively build an audience and discussions on the future of marketing. Several webinars will center around specific social media and internet marketing tools including LinkedIn, Twitter and analytical tools from Adobe, Google and others.

The webinar series is one of several new initiatives IMA is doing to continue to drive value for our members. If you would like to be considered as a presenter on an upcoming webinar, please e-mail Dominick Sirianni at dsirianni@imanetwork.org.

IMA Leadership Series at University of California, Irvine

Tomo Mizutani will be a featured IMA speaker at the University of California, Irvine. Prior to being appointed President of Toyo Tire Holdings of Americas, he served as President of Nitto Tire USA, based in Cypress, CA. He will share his inspiring story, business perspective, advice from the executive suite, and outlook on Internet Marketing and the global supply chain. The event will be jointly hosted by UC Irvine Extension, UCI Alumni Association and UCI Career Center.

WHO:

    Tomo Mizutani
    President, Toyo Tire Holdings of Americas

WHERE:

    Newkirk Alumni Center
    University of California, Irvine
    450 Alumni Ct,
    Irvine, CA 92697-1225

WHEN:

    1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
    Tuesday, April 1, 2014

COST:

    Entirely hosted by IMA and UCI

WHY:

    Tomo Mizutani began his career at the Japanese trading company, Nissho Iwai, in 1984. He was then assigned to the struggling Nitto Tire business in the United States in 1992, beginning his deep relationship with the brand. Nitto was nearly discontinued by the parent company in Japan, but Mizutani’s passion and intensive market research helped to shift the target, and in three years the business started to see a profit. Since then Nitto’s revenue has increased three-fold, with tire units more than doubling. While catering to the auto enthusiasts who helped establish the brand, Mizutani led Nitto’s award-winning marketing efforts by expanding the brand through bold digital strategies. Garnering nearly 6.0 million Facebook fans, Mizutani is also known for embracing initiatives such as mobile gaming and brand created video content. He was recently appointed President of Toyo Tire Holdings of Americas.

Register Today!

The Difference Between Male and Female Marketers

It is in the spirit of International Women’s Day, Saturday, March 8, 2014, that I write this article. For many readers this may not come as a surprise, but men and women think differently. I don’t have to go beyond my own marriage for an example. It’s not often that I ask my husband to change a light bulb. I’d do it myself if I had a workman’s ladder that could fit in my apartment (not to mention my husband is 6’4″ without heels). His typical answer, said with sincerity and without mockery: “Do you want me to do it now?” After 23 years of marriage I’ve developed a sense of humor: “No, I want you to do it next year, but I’m asking now so you can put it on your to do list.”

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Neurologists and psychologists have been grappling with the differences between how men and women think and behave for centuries. In researching for this article I’ve read countless articles about how men’s and women’s brains are wired differently. A recent study by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania states, “In one brain region, women have more connections between left and right hemispheres, and men within hemispheres, while in another brain region, it is the other way around.” The researchers go on to say, “This may explain, for example, why on average men are better at learning and performing single tasks, such as cycling or navigating [obviously not changing light bulbs], while women tend to be better at multitasking and problem-solving in group situations.”

In taking a closer look at today’s work dynamics, I asked women at the C-suite level what they thought were the differences between the sexes in the workplace.

 

Confidence

Lili Mahlab, EVP of Frontline Marketing, thinks that “often men in leadership positions tend to exude a lot of confidence.” Mahlab added, “It’s their confident attitude, especially when speaking in front of an audience that wins clients’ and colleagues’ respect.” Conversely, Mahlab talked about a female sales person on her team, who is somewhat hesitant when presenting. Mahlab coaches this salesperson to be more self-confident in order for her to elevate her sales wins. “People trust self-assured people,” stated Mahlab.

 

My way or the highway

According to researchers, men are better at dealing with the facts and tend to be more set in their ways. That means men may be quicker on the perception-action path, while women are better at integrating the analytic side of the brain with the intuitive and social side. Women excel at tasks that involve both logical and intuitive thinking. Mahlab said, “Women are often better listeners and tend to pick up more body language and voice inflection cues, which allow them to ‘course correct’ during a meeting.”

 

Misunderstanding

As an executive recruiter and consultant, I have found that people, both men and women, often stereotype. Mahlab chucked and told me, “It’s hilarious when I go into a meeting with a male colleague and the people we are meeting think he’s my boss — that is until I open my mouth.” But what really galls this successful female executive is that often people tend to direct the conversation to the men in the room rather than the women.

 

Conflict resolution

Many of my clients, both men and women, often tell me that women have a better ability to collaborate in business. Relating a story from her past, Soche Picard, EVP, group account director at Geometry Global spoke about working at a large holding company. The company had a long standing relationship with a Fortune 100 company who sponsored the Olympics ever year. One particular year, the company had the opportunity to bring together a number of its agencies under one platform for its client. Picard was tasked to “rally the troops by bringing the agencies together.” The concern for Picard was dealing with big egos in many of the agencies. “I know that I had to check my own ego at the door for the greater good. I had to understand the psychology of all the different players and how they could work together as a team.”

 

Talking vs. listening

Many women that I’ve worked with over the years have worked in predominantly male organizations. Mentally, women have the ability to get down to completing the tasks without their egos getting in the way. “What I’ve observed,” stated Picard, “is that women tend to listen first before reacting. Men lean towards the inverse. And, in my experience in this business, being an effective listener is a key attribute to being a strong leader — internally and externally.”

Chris Bart, a McMaster University business professor, and his research partner, Greg McQueen, administered a test to help board members assess their decision-making skills, as part of a training program. Here are some of their findings:

• Female board directors boost corporate performance.

• Some of the effects were measurable: Boards with more women are linked to a 53 percent higher return on equity, and their companies go bankrupt less frequently.

• The presence of even one female director can reduce the risk of going belly up by 20 percent.

• Women ask more questions, rather than nodding through decisions.

• Women rely more often on what the researchers call “complex moral reasoning” by weighing a broader range of factors and implications.

• Women fare better at making “consistently fair decisions when competing interests are at stake.”

• Men tend to base their decisions on rules and traditions.

• Women’s instincts make them better problem-solvers.

Increasingly, innate and beneficial gender differences are being used to build business. Yes, men and women are different. It is diversity of thought and behavior that savvy leaders seek when building their businesses. It’s about tapping the best candidate pools and ensuring retention of star employees. Smart leaders understand that men and women bring different skills to the table.

For more than 100 years, International Women’s Day http://www.internationalwomensday.com/ has celebrated the social, political, and economic achievements of women while focusing world attention on areas requiring further action. This year, the theme of International Women’s Day is “Inspiring Change,” and the organization is calling for greater awareness of women’s equality, more women in senior leadership roles, equal recognition of women in the arts, growth of female-owned businesses, increased financial independence of women, more women in science, technology, engineering, and math, and a fairer recognition of women in sports.

It may still be a man’s world, but women are making slow but steady progress finding their place at the table in corporate executive suites across the nation.

 

Erika Weinstein is CEO and founder of eTeam Executive Search.

On Twitter? Follow iMedia Connection at @iMediaTweet.

Online Certification For IMA Members

Certified Internet Marketer (CIM)

The IMA Certified Internet Marketer (CIM) professional certification program provides participants with the foundational Internet marketing education needed to succeed in today’s fast-changing online business environment.

Benefits

  • Access to exclusive IMA leadership events
  • Access to economic and other business opportunities
  • Introductions to members of the International Executive Council
  • First access to white papers, market intelligence, events and webinars by IMA
  • Ongoing access to CIM instructors and IMA leadership
  • CIM designation next to name (IMA Governing Body)

The certification course is divided into six lesson areas, culminating in a final exam to certify Internet marketing knowledge, including:

1. Overview of Internet Marketing:

The broad array of digital marketing including social media, mobile marketing, and online analytics

2. Online Acquisition:

Search marketing, display advertising, search engine optimization

3. Online Conversion:

Site personalization, online A/B and multivariate testing, content targeting, dynamic recommendations

4. Online Retention:

Email marketing, online surveys, voice of customer (VOC) strategies

5. Online Analytics & Measurement:

Measuring website performance with digital analytics, business goals and standard metrics to consider, tactics for telling “stories” with data to drive better online business decisions

6. Data-Driven Marketing:

Creating a culture and decision-making practices based on data, developing closed-loop marketing strategies and programs

Click here for more information.

Traditional Media Might Be Old, But It’s Not Dead… Yet

Contributing Writer at CMO.com

As CMOs and other marketing executives attempt to navigate the intricacies of today’s fickle and fast-changing consumer marketplace, it’s apparent that technology plays an increasingly critical role in driving strategies and tactics.

But somewhere between mobile, social media, and other digital channels lies an easy-to-forget reality: Old media hasn’t exactly disappeared. Indeed, television, radio, and print remain viable and effective tools for promoting a brand and capturing mind share and market share.

Sorting through this complex environment is a growing challenge–and one that requires a clear perspective. As Brian Babineau, senior vice president of content strategy and activation at Arnold Worldwide, told CMO.com: “Great scale and awareness can still come out of traditional media vehicles. Some of the most innovative advertising campaigns that have a digital, social, or content play have, at the core, made great use of television and other traditional tools to help bring the campaign story out to a larger audience.”

How can CMOs best navigate the chasm between old and new media? What goes into making effective decisions about how to define a strategy and allocate dollars? And how can an organization adopt an approach that leads to maximum synergy and bottom-line results? While there’s no template for producing results, one fact is perfectly clear: Success increasingly depends on using both old and new media effectively–and often in complementary ways.

Said Alton Adams, U.S. lead for the Customer Strategy and Growth Practice at KPMG Consulting, in an interview with CMO.com: “The goal is to ensure that you’re maximizing your marketing reach and not leaving certain customers behind because they have an affinity for old media.”

Click here for the full article.

– By Samuel Greengard

Ware Malcomb Sets A New Standard For Creative Office Design

Stamps.com HQ

Ware Malcomb, an award-winning international design firm, has been awarded a 2014 Commercial Real Estate Award from the Los Angeles Business Journal for its work in designing the new 100,000 square foot Stamps.com corporate headquarters building in El Segundo, Calif. The project earned the Silver Award in the office category, which was presented at an awards ceremony in Los Angeles on February 18. Stamps.com is the leading provider of Internet-based postage services.

“We are so pleased to be recognized for our work on the new Stamps.com corporate headquarters,” said CEO of Ware Malcomb, Larry Armstrong. “This is one of many creative office projects Ware Malcomb has been designing that are truly setting the standard for this architectural movement.”

Ware Malcomb provided interior and architectural design services for this creative office project, which involved transforming two adjacent, three-story office buildings totaling 82,000 square feet into a new contemporary 100,000 square foot corporate headquarters building. The renovation structurally connected the two existing buildings with the addition of a new two-story 18,000 square foot high-end lobby with glass box suspended conference rooms, an interactive cafeteria, collaborative lounge areas, fitness center and other employee amenities. Ware Malcomb’s scope of work also included redesigning the main core of the existing building to provide more efficient space layout and easy access, full interior design and architecture services for 60,000 square feet, and a full exterior remodel of the entire building. The Stamps.com project will be featured in a special section in the February 24 edition of the Los Angeles Business Journal.

The project was managed out of Ware Malcomb’s Los Angeles office, led by Regional Director, Radwan Madani. “This project allowed us to combine our architectural and interior design expertise to create a building as innovative and dynamic as the tech industry itself,” said Madani. “We wish the entire team at Stamps.com much continued success in its new award-winning creative office headquarters.”

The General Contractor for the project was KPRS (www.kprsinc.com).

Ware Malcomb offers planning, architecture, interior design, graphic design and civil engineering services to commercial real estate and corporate clients. Established in 1972, Ware Malcomb is an award-winning international design firm with 14 office locations throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico and Panama. The firm specializes in the design of commercial office, industrial, technology, healthcare, retail, auto dealerships, public/institutional, educational facilities and renovation projects.

8 Tips To Becoming A LinkedIn Group Star

It’s kind of an understatement to say that LinkedIn groups have become popular: there are over 1.9 million of them covering a wide range of topics. The best ones are thriving communities where industry professionals interact with one another and share voluble ideas and insights from their professional worlds.

For some an online community such as LinkedIn can be ominous to the point of non-participation. This means missing out on the valuable connections and learning that LinkedIn has to offer. It’s much more than an online resume site and the groups are a major part of the community.

Here are some tips to success with LinkedIn groups:

  1. Join groups that match your interests. With 1.9 million groups there’s a good chance you will find a group that matches your interests. Search out those groups. If there are several groups in your topic area, try a few at a time. Leave groups that do not keep your interest.
  2. Not all groups are created equal. You may join some groups to keep in touch with college or company alumni or to get updates from a specific organization. Not every group requires frequent interaction; the LinkedIn tools allow you to choose the frequency of interaction.
  3. Watch a group’s behavior before posting. You’ll want to fit in, not stand out -at least at first. Pay attention to the tone and style of posts and comments, etc. See what kinds of topics get commented on most often.
  4. Stay on the topic. The best groups do not approve posts that are not of specific interest to the group members. The closer you stay to home with your post topics, the more often you will be approved and the more often group members will comment on your posts.
  5. Do not “self-promote.” Unless the group was specifically created to share your home carpet cleaning business or your catering success, you should not be sharing it. You should post things that will be interesting to other readers.
  6. Bring new information to the group. Find and post articles that bring new ideas to the group, and don’t rehash the same old topics. You want to look like a thought leader and posting articles about new concepts and up to date marketing techniques, etc., can help you get there.
  7. Post insightful comments. The writer certainly enjoys the “Great post, Bob” comments, but the whole community on the group enjoys a well thought addition to the discussion.
  8. Focus on creating and participating in discussions. The best contributions are those that promote interaction and discussion between group members. It’s a beautiful thing when it works. You should look for these discussions and get involved. When creating a discussion, ask questions that are food for thought; make it easy for people to comment.

LinkedIn is here to stay and offers each of us an opportunity to promote our personal brand and grow our networks and the LinkedIn groups are central to that. Each of us should spend some time learning to get the best from the LinkedIn community.

Have you been involved in LinkedIn groups? What are the topics you like to see?

By Eric Lundbohm

Follow his updates on Twitter @lundbohm

www.linkedin.com/in/ericlundbohm/

Las Vegas Executive Gathering at CES

Great turnout of Internet Marketing and Business Leaders at the 2014 IMA Gathering at CES. Participants included Scott Roth, Vice President of ExactTarget, Matt Langie, Vice President of Adobe, Jordan Fiksenbaum, Vice President of Cirque du Soleil, Julie Hoffman, head of Digital Marketing for MGM Resorts International, Doug Carlson, Founder, Fiji Water/CMO Barnes & Knoblel, Pete Elliot, IBM, Rhiannon Hamel, Wynn Resorts and other companies including Eloqua, Oracle, UFC and MMA! Encore/Wynn Resort – Las Vegas, Nevada.

Click here to see event photos.

The 5 Biggest Social Media Mistakes Companies Make

Marketing, Business and Management

Social media. Much had been written, everyone is talking about it. Everyone wants to know what you are doing in it. Still many folks do not understand the process. But that doesn’t stop some companies from jumping in anyway. However, that might not be the best strategy.

Executing a social media strategy that makes a difference takes thought, planning and consistent execution. In social media many companies feel the pressure to be involved and jump in before they have really thought it through. They end up making one or more of these easy-to-avoid mistakes:

  1. Starting without a plan. A fairly common way for some companies to get started in social media is to sign up for LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook accounts and then “let’s see what happens.” It’s also likely that almost nothing will happen and certainly the world won’t beat a path to your door to see what your next pearl of wisdom will be. Social media is a crowded place and you need to carefully stake out your audience, your voice and your expertise. It will not “just take off” on its own.
  2. Not knowing the audience. Social media platforms are excellent places to find and grow an audience for what you have to say. However, your content must be relevant to the audience to get noticed. You’ll attract different audiences based on how you position your social media accounts and by the content that you post.
  3. Broadcasting the same exact thing over all networks. One seemingly popular strategy is to join all the relevant social media platforms and then, send out the same exact news releases, at the same time, on all of the networks. Since many in your audience will sign up for multiple social media networks, based on their favorites, you’ll be sending out redundant messages. A more forward thinking strategy would be to give each network a different voice. Concentrate on different things in different streams. Grow different types of audiences.
  4. Mixing business with pleasure. This tends to happen with small entrepreneurial companies where the owner uses the company’s Twitter account to tweet out personal opinions, comments on service at restaurants and the like. Telling us you have a hangover is not a way to enhance your brand. Keep this type of chatter on a personal account and not on anything associated with your brand.
  5. Losing interest over time. Many companies start sending out all sorts of content through social media and after a few months have run out of ideas or the person who was doing all the activity left the company, etc. Social media is no longer something you “try and see if it works.” It works and your competitors are making it work. If you begin a social media outreach the goal is to make it an asset to your business and a major boost in your branding. To do this, just like your vrand, success in social media requires continued time and investment.

Social media is with us to stay. It’s become a complex and interesting world where marketers have a chance to differentiate their brands and showcase innovative content. Embrace it, understand it and make it happen. You hopefully won’t make these mistakes!

Connect with Eric Lundbohm on LinkedIn

Follow his updates on Twitter @lundbohm

Social Media and Commercial Real Estate

Strategies to Grow Your Business and Build Your Brand

Social media has created a momentous shift in how we communicate with one other. It has become the great digital equalizer; small and large companies alike can build their brands, expand their businesses and connect with their clients online via social media outlets.

To understand social media, one must understand how communication has changed. Traditional marketing involved identifying a target market, crafting a compelling message and “pushing” it out via channels that would reach a specific audience. Typical strategies included advertising, commercials, brochures, direct mail, billboards, flyers and even websites. Social media has changed this dynamic. Now consumers have a public voice. Did you have a bad experience at a restaurant? Complain about it on Yelp. Do you love a certain athletic brand? Share your passion on Facebook or Instagram. Clients, colleagues and employees can become your biggest advocates or your greatest critics.

Another dynamic occurring today is the overload of marketing messaging online and the need for compelling, relevant content. Consumers are inundated with an excess of unsolicited marketing messages, and commercial real estate professionals are no exception. When asked if they get too many emails, most say “yes.” Consumers now have the power to just say “no” through action: they can unsubscribe from e-blasts, skip TV commercials using TiVo or a DVR, or avoid radio commercials by subscribing to satellite radio.

Click here to view the full story.