Category Archives: Social Media

Are you ready for the Age of Influence?

Social Media event at National University, San Diego, CA.

I’ve been using social media since 2006, and users like me have moved from early stages of platforms like Friendster, to more current platforms like TikTok. Social media continues to evolve. One of the aspects of it is regarding digital influence and Influencers. Influencers are individuals who are trusted by their followers or recognized as experts in their fields, and some have developed communities on social media that are in the hundreds of thousands or millions of users. The Age of Influence, by Neal Schaffer (HarperCollins Leadership, 2020), discussed how these influencers have power to amplify the brands that they know, like and trust.

The Age of Influence is the latest of Schaffer’s four books. Before this one, Maximize your Social (Wiley, 2013) was more of a guide for social media strategy, while this one is specific to helping marketers break through the clutter in social media with more precise strategy, tactics, and tools collaborating with influencers for greater ROI.

In this book, Schaffer points to the value of influencer marketing as part of the marketing mix. He refers to the early days of social media when there was free content that was viral and organic. It’s hard to make happen today due to the deluge of platforms and amount of digital content posts in the trillions. There are many ways to pay for placements because now your followers rarely find your messaging in their social feeds. With a paid campaign, whether on traditional media like TV or social media, the message time frame is finite; Once it’s over, that’s it. With influencers, the impact can last longer, and it can be even greater than expected, but it is not a guarantee.

Influencer marketing is like word of mouth (WOM) marketing and is very powerful, according to Schaffer. It basically leverages other people to talk about you.

Artificial intelligence and algorithms favor people in their rankings and visibility over brands. The trust factor for people is higher than for brands. For those who are looking to get into this area, Schaffer says to begin with the end in mind. That’s what the ROI teaches marketers, to ask what success looks like ahead of time. That success will look different for every instance, based on the needs at the time, just like with a paid ad campaign.

How can a firm find the right influencers for them? One way is to search for and find bloggers who are writing about your topics. You can request that they promote to their audiences. Compare the attribution. UTM tags compare results on other marketing channels and so the wise marketer can adjust the budget accordingly.

Some celebrities only want to work with big brands. One suggestion for a smaller niche is to find a micro or nano-influencer, even potentially with as small as 500 followers but someone who has a highly engaged audience. Schaffer provides a whole chapter in his book on the various tools that you can utilize to achieve this.

Brand affinity is a key point that was very relatable in the book. Schaffer says that firms don’t always, but should look inward beginning with their own employees of your firm and get their buy in. A relationship with employees can make a big difference, not just asking them to post your weekend sale prices, but to really understand your goals and finding ways to collaborate by treating them as an influencer.

Social Media is about influence.
I met Neal at this conference in San Diego, year after year.

In addition to employees, Schaffer suggests other people who have strong brand affinity that you can potentially leverage as influencers: Partners: Distributors, Affiliates, Customers, and even your followers on social media.

In an age where it’s hard to get people together due to the Covid-19 virus, marketing is going to be harder than before. However, people will reach out and continue to trust those that they have relationships with both offline and online. If your company has not been able to establish these online relationships and trust with social media users, taking Schaffer’s advice in The Age of Influence and finding ways to collaborate with influencers might be one strategy to consider in the months ahead. Even if your marketing budget is on hold, taking the time to better identify and develop relationships with influencers will reap dividends well after this pandemic ends.

SMMW Year Eight Attendee: New notes and Photo of the musicians from 2017

Here are the top 13 things that I learned at this year’s SMMW20 conference by Dr. Mary Beth McCabe, attendee.

  1. TikTok deep dive: Can we monetize it? That’s going to be the challenge. Create evergreen content plus trending content and use both. Consistency is better than frequency. Think of a movie trailer.
  2. Social media marketers need to be problem solvers first, before they can build their following.
  3. Five channels for revenue: Acronym PAIDS: Products, Ads/Affiliates, Information, Decks, Services
  4. The hot topic is streaming. Especially recurring and evergreen, but these are not always compatible. Ex. Netflix
  5. Create trust: reputation is an assessment of our trustworthiness.
  6. Podcasting: Be sure you create great content worth podcasting. Serve your audience before you serve anyone else. Know what they want. Ask them. Promote the episodes. Reviews don’t matter as much. Subscriptions do count. People stick around for the “voice.” (Paul Colligan)
  7. Analytics:  15-word headlines work. Long is good, especially in headlines. Write 20 headlines, then select. Short paragraphs. Every scroll should have an image. FAQ page. Remove old ones.
  8. HotJar uses heatmaps and user recordings plus surveys to find out what users like in your website.
  9. Find the 404’s. See where people came from to find your broken links
  10. Search is for the busy; social is for the bored.
  11. Eradicate mediocre. Less than perfect is ok @annhandley showed a rabbit conversion over three months. Slow down to speed up. (SDSU)
  12. Tesla Theatre inside car with streaming video. 29% growth this year. High demand for documentary storytelling
  13. Marketers are not trusted, so that needs to be established before anything.
The music is what I love at SMMW

How is the Mobile Marketing textbook doing sales-wise?

We are pleased to show the actual sales numbers here, since 2017. We’ve donated thousands of dollars for scholarships to college students through Marketing EDGE, and we are pleased to be publishing the 6th update to the book this fall, so your students can enjoy reading the very latest now. Have you seen the book? As a faculty, you have free access. Get a full set of PPT’s, notes, case studies, quizzes, exams, course outlines, teaching tips and more. We love to help other teachers learn to teach this course. Thank you, Stukent, Inc for your support of this project since 2012.

Executive Education Seminar in San Jose (free) in person

As part of the promotion of the new M.S. in Marketing Program scheduled to start Jan. 1, 2019 [ we’re holding an executive education seminar on Wed, Dec. 12 from 6 -8 pm at NU San Jose Campus.


Registration [free] is required:

Masters in Marketing (MS) at National University

Are you thinking about how to climb the ladder to the next rung? Will a Masters degree in Marketing help you? If so, we are offering this in ten months, one course a month. So for a small investment, you will have a lifetime of opportunity.

Talk to our advisors at National University. Ask them what you need. They are the experts.

You don’t need to take GMAT exams, or prep courses. Your transcripts from college will be needed, but that’s easy to do.

If you want online classes from anywhere in the world, we can provide that. And our onsite classes begin soon, too.

Our students learn about real business situations, from real faculty with real experience on the job. Our courses are reviewed and evaluated by students like you, every month! They tell us what they learned.

Let us know what you are doing in your current job, and we’ll see if we can help you climb to the next rung. We have experience, with more than 150,000 alumni. The new website is here for more info.

What are the best schools?

We did not create this list. We did not even know there was such a list, and National University is near the top. Can NU do better? Yes. of course. We are always improving our value and relevance. Here is the list from The Best Schools.
Our enrollments are rising now for our 2019 classes. So if you are searching for a program that is flexible, monthly, and with high value, consider looking at the Specialization in Mobile Marketing and Social Media as part of the MBA at National University.
Our graduates are working in the fields where they learned to craft their writing, strategy and collaboration. We’d like to introduce you to some of them. In the meantime, take a look at the rankings here and compare our program with the best.

The 14 Best Online Master’s in Internet Marketing Programs

Advanced Instagram for Business Strategies with Jenn Herman

Do you have a business account on Instagram? Are you an advanced user who needs some help with getting more followers and relevant impact in your special area? Check out this live session with Jenn Herman (pictured, second from left) from April 24, 2018 to find out what works for best practices.

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Jenn Herman

Jenn Herman and her Instagram book at National University


Marketing Automation for Mobile and Social with Jaime Nacach

Click<iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”” frameborder=”0″ allow=”autoplay; encrypted-media” allowfullscreen></iframe> if you want to better understand what is going on in Marketing and Marketing Automation today. We would like to hear from you. Did you learn anything new here? I know that everyone has a chance to share and learn when they are open to the experience. Are you taking your automation to the next level?

We talk about analytics, tracking, privacy and so much more.

Takeaways include all of the different platforms you can use to save time and save money.

Mobile apps need to be careful when they use automation. Forms need to be accessible.

Jaime Nacach graded the following platforms: 1-10, 10 being best.

Constant Contact 7-8

Zoho Campaigns 9-10

ActiveCampaigns 9

GetResponse 7

Hubspot ….not used, but would give it a 10.

Also, Agile CRM

and InfusionSoft was mentioned.

Big companies may not embrace Automation as small firms can. They are not as agile.

Listen to the recording to find out what works and what doesn’t.

Thank you to Jaime Nacach from Bloominari Marketing.


Data Privacy Discussion Live with Michael Becker

Michael Becker is on the faculty at National University and has become an expert in Data Privacy. Do you know what this is? What is data? Clear up some of the confusion and learn with us. What Watch the video here:

Read more on the topic below.


Michael Becker

Mobile Marketing Workshop photo

Michael Becker has been studying this topic for ten years. He’s really one of the brightest minds on the subject. Get to know your privacy rights. What happens after you click?

Want to know more about personal data, especially when it’s yours?

People’s relationship with their personal information is changing. People are becoming aware that their personal information is employed by organizations (inc. commercial, non-commercial, government) to support background operations, to personalize services, to deliver conveniences and value. However, to date, outside simple opt-in mechanics, people have had little to no active role in the management of their personal information. For example, people have little to no insight or say in how their data is used for marketing, in predictive analytics modeling, credit scoring, real-identity detection & resolution, fraud management, and a host of other applications that have a material effect on nearly every aspect of their lives. We’re entering an age of awareness and awakening. The increase of public data breaches, the rise of recognized security flaws in hardware and software, and actual and perceived data misuses of personal data are opening people’s eyes to the need to protect their privacy and to take an active role in the management of their personal information. One day, market leaders envision, that the majority of people will awaken to the undeniable fact that their personal information has value, that it is their asset, and that they can have an active role in its management–its production, collection, refinement, use, exchange, and value. However, for many, having control over the sovereignty of their digital self may be out of reach of many, as privacy is the new luxury good.

In this session Mary Beth McCabe and Michael Becker have an online fireside chat on the future of privacy and the emergence of the individual digital sovereignty. We’ll discuss the triggers–changes in people’s behavior, the regulatory and technology landscape, and commercial reactions—that have triggered a tsunami that is washing over the world’s economies. Once the waters recede the landscape of business will forever be changed. It is time to prepare.

Michael, Becker, Ramon Corona, Mary Beth McCabe, (l to r) at National University

Live with Jamie Turner, Internationally Recognized Author, Network TV News Contributor

Want to learn from Jamie Turner? He’s got some inspiration here in this webinar, recorded early in 2018.

Learn about social media, mobile marketing, artificial intelligence and virtual reality. All of these which impact marketers today. Find out what the trends mean.