Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Makana Solutions Doubles Website Traffic and Leads while Measuring Internet Marketing Effectiveness with HubSpot Closed Loop Marketing

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Topic Paper: Makana Solutions Doubles Website Traffic and Leads while Measuring Internet Marketing Effectiveness with HubSpot Closed Loop Marketing

HubSpot is an integrated internet marketing service allowing its users to track website traffic, leads, and sales. Those are the basics of the services it also allows companies using the service the ability to fine tune web pages and gather information on the best keywords, meta-tags, content, and website titles. This article spoke of Makana Solutions a business who sells sales compensation services to small and medium sized businesses via the internet.

Makana Solutions faced the problem of not getting enough exposure to continue to make there business grow. Makana Solutions’ goal was to generate more traffic, leads, and sign visitors up for free trial programs. Makana’s marketing director Art Gehring decided to re-evaluate the way they made their efforts to market to the consumer’s of their product. The product Makana offers is a self-service online sales compensation software. This software streamlines processes involved in compensating employees for commissions they would make during sales periods.
Art Gehring decided rather quickly the marketing department was operating inefficiently due to the multiple tools they were trying to use to track traffic, leads, and sales from the website. This made Art check around for software which would cause his team to spend less time analyzing data and gathering the relevant information about those who were visiting the site. Art eventually found HubSpot who provides a wide array of services packed into one software pack. This software pack Art found had the ability to track traffic, leads, and sales. These pieces of information allowed art to find out specifics on his customers and people browsing the site.

Makana Solutions was able to track customers and leads with much ease allowing them to edit the content, meta-tags, and keywords to attract more attention to Makana Solutions when someone is using a search engine. This integrated internet marketing software allows the focus to turn from strictly spending time analyzing data to taking the analysis and putting it to work for you. This has lead to growth and efficiency in Makana’s marketing efforts.

Makana Solutions has been able to grow by efficiently operating in the marketing department. This has been done by tracking where the web traffic is coming from, creating meta-tags and keywords that cause them to pop-up as an organic search result rather than a sponsored ad you must pay for. HubSpot created an easy way for Makana Solutions to track customers, leads, and sales as well as identifying strong meta-tags and keywords. The result of Art’s Decision to implement a new system has caused web traffic to double, tripling target leads, and an increase in Makana’s presence in organic searches.

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eBay vs. Craiglist

Ebay Slaps Lawsuit On Craigslist!

Article Summary

On April 22, 2008, a lawsuit was filed by eBay against Craigslist, with the Delaware Court of Chancery, in the State of Delaware, which is a forum that resolves disputes between companies registered in Delaware. EBay had acquired 28.4% interest in Craigslist in 2004, making it a minority shareholder in Craigslist.

According to eBay, the reason behind them filing the lawsuit is that two directors of Craigslist, Craig Newmark and their chief executive, Jim Buckmaster, have unfairly entered into transactions that have diluted eBay’s economic interest in the company by more than 10 percent. EBay alleged that both the directors have breached their fiduciary duties.

Mike Jacobson, eBay’s senior vice president and general counsel, revealed through a written statement that, “The recent actions by the Craigslist directors have disadvantaged eBay and its investment in Craigslist.” He said, “Since negotiating our investment with Craigslist’s board in 2004, we have acted openly and in good faith as a minority shareholder, so we were surprised by these recent unilateral actions. We are asking the Delaware court to rescind these recent actions in order to protect eBay’s stockholders and preserve our investment.”

Craigslist responded to this lawsuit fiercely in a blog by saying that the eBay lawsuit is “unethical and unfounded.” “We are surprised and disappointed by eBay’s unfounded allegations, which came to us out of the blue, without any attempt to engage in a dialogue with us,” the blog post said. “Coming from a shareholder that views Craigslist as a prime competitor, filing suit without so much as mentioning these assertions beforehand seems unethical, and hints at ulterior motives.”

The blog post goes on to say that Craigslist has always meted out a fair treatment to eBay, the minority shareholder, and will continue to do so in the future as well. They also said, “EBay has absolutely no reason to feel threatened here — unless, of course, they’re contemplating a hostile takeover of Craigslist, or the sale of eBay’s stake in Craigslist to an unfriendly party.”

With both, eBay and Craigslist flinging accusations at each other, only time will tell who is at the receiving end, whether it is eBay that has been given a raw deal or if it is Craigslist that is being taken for a ride by a minority shareholder.

Brief Overview

The article does not adequately define the precise reason why eBay is filing a lawsuit against Craigslist, but it does say that Craigslist “unfairly entered into transactions that have diluted eBay’s economic interest in the company by more than 10 percent”. It is a vague reason, but obviously Craigslist has made some decisions to shift that shareholders best interest. Craigslist disputes back by saying that eBay had never even mentioned any kind of complaint or “without any attempt to engage in a dialogue with us … which hints at ulterior motives”.

Class Relevance

Ebay and Craigslist are full of both marketers and consumers. These are both online companys that do one thing, bring seller and buyer together. Ebay offers their services at a global market, while Craigslist offers local deals and services. In addition, Craiglist offers listings for job postings, advertisements, and personals, free of charge (which may explain its generic appearance). People with an online business who want to market their products and/or businesses to consumers may choose to route either website to keep their costs low. Marketers could have the ambition to market their products globally through eBay, or locally through Craiglist. A Craigslist consumer will have a decision to pick up a bed or car locally, or an eBayer who wants a rare book or album that can easily be shipped cross-country or overseas. In addition to eBay and Craigslist, Yahoo! also have posting of auctions and jobs. These are a few companies that are utilized fully by the public, both marketers and consumers.

Internet Marketing

Christi Jalovec
May 21st, 2008

Internet Marketing: How to Market Your Webpage

This article, written by David Malan, describes how to easily market a website on the Internet. The author lists 5 different “pre-school” steps to follow if the user is new at Internet marketing and is on a smaller budget.

The first step the author lists is site optimization. This includes the user making their site manageable for viewers to navigate. He states that this is the most important aspect since everything after will branch off of this idea. The user will need to title their page and match it to the URL so viewers can find the webpage easily and it will be what they were looking for.
The second step is linking and indexing. This step is used so that search engines will view the users site. The author also emphasizes how not to use forums to direct viewers to the users site since it will destroy the users business rather then help it.

The third step is implement online marketing partnerships with high-profile online businesses. This step is pretty self-explanatory. It explains how to be directed from larger companies sites through banners. This is credible since these “high-profile” sites are recommended and are listed on familiar search engines like Google.

The fourth step is dabbling in paid keyword advertising. This is used when the company feels they have completed the previous steps and are ready to put money into their webpage. The author suggests Google since they are the most popular compared to some other search engines.
The fifth and final step is to involve and Internet marketing specialist. The author explains that after using steps 1-4 that the users webpage should be getting feedback and results. Now the company can hire a specialist to upkeep the users webpage. The specialist will also provide detailed reports showing how much more effective they are marketing the page.

I feel that these steps would be useful to a newer company that would like to know how to more effectively marketing their webpages. These steps looked helpful in explaining how to accomplish this. There are most likely some more detailed articles discussing more techniques to use and more specific directions but it is a nice summary. The link to this article is listed below.

Virtual Value Chain

Kelly Dresser
Internet Marketing
May 21, 2008
Virtual Value Chain

The article that I chose is titled Exploiting the Virtual Value Chain and is written by Jefferey Rayport, John J. Sviokla and Hendrik Bruinette. The article discusses how all business today have two worlds in which they compete in, the physical world and the virtual world. The physical world being described as a tangible world where managers can see, touch and physically locate information and documents. A virtual world pertains to all the information and resources on the Internet or web that cannot be physically handled. Now that businesses compete in two totally different worlds, two value chains need to be considered. It is necessary to have two different value chains and to distinguish these two worlds because the processes for creating values in them are not the same at all. Fed ex recently created a virtual value chain by allowing customers to find and track packages on their website. FedEx offers this service for free but it has created value for the customer, and in turn has increased customer loyalty, which is essential in such a competitive market as FedEx is involved. Rayport JF explains that a sequence of five activities is required to create value within a virtual value chain: Gathering information, Organising the information, Selecting the information, Synthesising the information, and Distributing the information. Through these steps it is important that each step adds to the total value created and does not destroy the value created by other activities.

Rayport goes on to explain that the three stages that companies can make use of the value created by information are; visiblity, mirroring capabilites and new customer relationships. The first stage, visiblity, allows companies to "see" physical operations through information, coordinate activities, and lay the foundation for a virtual value chain. In the second stage, mirroring capability, companies substitute virtual activities for physical activites and begin to create a parallel value chain in the marketspace. Lastly in the third stage, new customer relationships, businesses use information to establish new customer relationships. Allowing for managers to draw on the flow of information in their virtual value chain to deliver value to customers.

The article also discusses the value matrix and how each stage in the value chain allows for many new extracts from the stream of information and how each could constitiute a new product or service. Rayport also refers to this as the matrix of value opportuintites. This article discusses different aspects of the value chain and what it can do for a company. In class, we discussed very similar aspects of the value chain such as how it is a customer centric, how it provides increased customer value and how it improves the business processes. Today thousands of companies immplement value chains by having established sites on the World Wide Web to advertise products, to obtain comments from customers and to automate the interface with the customer, through electronic mail and electronic commerce. All of these components are important to the customer because they feel as if they have the control, they have a say, their wants/needs are important to the company and are met. In turn, this value chain is important to the company because it portrays customers comments, concerns, want/needs, and by being able to meet this criteria they are awarded customer loalty and increased profit for their company. For more in-depth detail see link below for a copy of the article.

New Internet Platform Being Developed

This article discusses the new internet platform being developed, commonly referred to as Internet2. This new internet will allow data to be transferred about 10,000 times faster than a typical broadband connection. The new internet, referred to as “the grid” in this article will be capable to transmit holographic images , allow users to make high definition video telephone calls, and also allow hundreds of thousands of gamers to play online games at the same time. The grid is said to completely change the face of the internet allowing users to communicate in ways never before thought possible. The current internet uses cables and routing equipment made for telephone calls which isn’t sufficient enough for high speed data transmission. The grid will use fiber optic cables and new routing technology. The amount of servers for this internet are said to increase from 55,000 to 200,000 in the next two years. The grid network is currently built and there are 11 centres around the world including the United States, Canada, and Europe. This will also change the way that people store information. Instead of saving data to personal computers, data will be able to be stored online and can be accessed anywhere. Although it may not be available directly to consumers, there are companies currently using the technology. One of the projects being developed is a network allowing groups of internet users who download large volumes of data that would normally take hours, to take a few minutes. This technology is thought to revolutionize society.

I think that this technology will make a huge impact in regards to marketing. Companies will be able to communicate with consumers in a completely different way. New forms of advertising will be created using this new technology. One example from the article is having holographic images being transferred online. This will completely change the way marketers advertise online, unlike anything that has been done before. As we have discussed in class, the internet has drastically changed from the early 1990’s to the technology we currently have available with the internet. Companies have been able to create a more interactive experience by using the current technologies such as flash to allow consumers to be involved in a company’s website, rather than just reading data from a webpage. This will take it to a whole new level. Support from a company website will go from online assistance being available by online chat to having a holographic image video conference giving you step by step instructions. This will also allow companies to develop better social utilities allowing consumers of their product to interact with one another better than the technologies available today. Since this technology hasn’t been seen by the general public yet it is difficult to speculate every use of this technology, but it will indeed make a big impact in online marketing.

E-marketingclass Direct Marketing

I created my own page from and linked my article ( up to that. If you go to the bottom of my page and click May 21 Topic #1 you will see my article and response.

My page is :

The Impact of Online Reviews

Joseph Moran
Internet Marketing
Kevin Trainor
May 20, 2008

If you type “Los Angeles chiropractor” into the search field on the Google home page, you will be presented with almost 1.5 million results. In addition, Google Maps will display a map with ten local businesses, their locations, contact and review information matching your search. The goal of a business is to be in the number one spot. By leveraging new age word-of-mouth advertising, Dr. Michael Dorausch, a Los Angeles chiropractor, has succeeded in reaching this goal. The article I researched, “Online reviews can help grow a business” by Jefferson Graham of US Today, told Dr. Dorausch’s story.

Local listing sites with online reviews have become a popular destination for both individuals who are considering a product or service and those who want to share their experience with that product or service. An increasing number of consumers are turning to business listing sites including; Citysearch, Google, Yelp, Yahoo!local, MerchantCircle, etc. These sites provide location information and a forum for consumers to gather information about a company or product before they buy. Listing his company has dramatically increased business according to Dr. Dorausch, who reports that 80% of his new clients were referred from sites like those mentioned above. He posts signs in his office asking clients to share their experience, and occasionally solicits them to post reviews through personalized e-mailings.

The feedback and directions that potential clients receive is not the only benefit to businesses. Dr. Dorausch’s business is listed on a variety of popular local listing sites, increasing his exposure to the local community. Theses listings are then linked back to his site, which increase his site’s relevance to certain keywords. This has helped him to attain the coveted number one search result for “Los Angeles chiropractor”. It would seem that there is an immense opportunity for companies to increase their client base by utilizing the various local listing sites with review functionalities.

This topic is highly relevant to both marketers and consumers. Traffic on local listing sites have increased dramatically in the past few years, Google Maps grows 25% per year and Yelp is up 129% this year. This data screams to marketers, “LIST YOUR BUSINESS!” It is especially important for small, local businesses because of the low cost involved. Some sites charge to list, but it can be quickly earned back through the increase in business. The reviewing feature of these sites can be a double edged sword for marketers; some consumers will ignore overly flattering reviews, and then there is always the chance of getting a scathing review.

For consumers, you are given an opportunity to read up on the landscape of business offerings. You can determine if a product or service offered by a company is worth your hard earned cash. On the other hand, consumers must be careful of some reviews as the content is not always guaranteed to be the truth. Consumers also receive the benefit of getting a large listing of the businesses that offer what they are looking for in the local area, some of which they may not have initially considered. These functions allow consumers to compare businesses offering similar products/services and to offer insight into their experience with companies.

You can access the article I reviewed by clicking the following link:

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