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Semester Project Overview

For the duration of the semester, we will be creating fictional brands that the class will use to generate original social media, PR and adv...

Good Night, and Good Luck

To the students of COMSTRAT 310:

Thank you!!!

I had a fantastic time working with you this past semester. It was a pleasure to work with all of you on your semester-long campaign and projects.

Please have a safe and fun summer break! :)

WEEKS 15 & 16: Learning Google Analytics, StatCounter & Web Analytics Tools/Final Projects & Social Media Marketing Plans

SUMMARY:

For the final weeks of the semester, we will:
  • Learn about website analytics tools (such as Google Analytics and StatCounter) that enable a better understanding of site/campaign traffic, referral and behavior patterns.
  • Learn about Google Ads, Google AdSense and Google Ad Manager.
  • Finish our semester-long campaign website and related social media channels.
HOMEWORK:
  • Work on your final exam, due no later than the end of the day on Tuesday, April 30.
  • Continue to work on your Social Media Marketing Plan, due Tues., April 30. (Note: Please see the syllabus for a rubric that includes criteria on how this is evaluated).
  • Continue to Facebook and Twitter updates frequently (several times this week) and attempt to build a larger follower/fan count by outreach to friends and family, as well as activity on like-minded social media pages. (Note: Please see the syllabus for a rubric that includes criteria on how your website and social media campaigns are evaluated).
  • OPTIONAL: Read Chapter 8: "BrandYou"

Landing your First PR or Advertising Job

Looking for a job in PR or Advertising? Getting that first gig can be tough. Here are some resources that may help in your search:
Socially network in the following LinkedIn Groups:

Research the company before you apply!

Semester Project Overview

For the duration of the semester, we will be creating fictional brands that the class will use to generate original social media, PR and advertising campaign elements. Rather than use “real” brands or services for each campaign, you will orchestrate your campaign around a single fictional brand that you create.

The types of fictional products or services will vary, but some examples of categories include:

  • Non-alcoholic beverage (e.g. soda pop, sports drink, coffee, etc.)
  • Energy Pill
  • Airline
  • Internet-based music company
  • Shampoo or Hair Grooming Product
  • Stylish clothing line
Each student may identify other brand categories to be considered, but the above is only meant as a starter list for consideration. For each of the above soon-to-be-created brands, each student will research varying brand names and logo treatments as they consider the competitive positioning of the brand in the presumed marketplace.

When naming your brand, it is important that students NOT use any existing or "real" brands for these projects. However, you will use a trademark search engine to investigate whether your suggested brand names already exist. You may also use Adobe Photoshop or, alternatively, a free online tool to generate an original logo for your "fictional" brand.

Your campaign prep work also includes user persona research and a SWOT analysis to help determine brands strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Remember: You are inventing the brand and the attributes that define it! This is the perfect chance to examine the competitive landscape of your product to identify "opportunities" or under-served niches that you can aim to reach with your campaign. It's a clean slate!!!

Your initial research helps to define your brand, messaging, audience and its position in the marketplace. This is all essential to the second phase of your campaign: the actual social media marketing, advertising and public relations outreach that will help bring awareness of your campaign to the masses.

Over the duration of the semester, students may create some or all of these elements:
  • A social media marketing plan
  • An SEO-optimized campaign website
  • Social media pages (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.)
  • A performance marketing campaign
  • A targeted e-mail campaign
  • and more!
Examples of Previous Semester Campaign Sites:
Examples of Previous Semester Social Media Marketing Plans:

    What should be in your social media marketing plan?

    Your final social media marketing plan should include the following sections and elements:
    • Executive Summary/Overview
    • Social Media Presence
    • Competitive Analysis
    • Goals
    • Strategies
    • Target Market
    • Tools & Implementation
    • Monitoring & Tuning
    • Budget & ROI
    In addition, your Social Media Marketing Plan should include documentation of the research and planning of your campaign, including:
    • Branding research (logo/name survey results)
    • User Personas
    • SWOT Analysis
    • Wireframe(s)

    SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING PLAN RUBRIC

    Using elements of a “Research, Writing, and Creativity” rubric – your work will be evaluated using the following criteria:
    • Research and Preparation: Student demonstrates thoughtful preparation and research
    • Content: Meets all the criteria for the assignment. All content is in the students’ own words (or cited appropriately) and is accurate.
    • Complete and Thorough: All aspects and sections of the assignment are completed in full with no holes. Demonstrated the ability to research to complete all tables, templates or outline requirements
    • Creativity: Students demonstrate creativity and innovation in completing the assignment content and any layout or design elements. The final product is unique, powerful, effective, and compelling.
    • Conventions: Document is easy to read and all elements are very clearly written, labeled. The document has no misspellings or grammatical errors. All template elements or outline sections are complete and thorough.

    Understanding Google Analytics

    Would you like to know more about the Web traffic click-through patterns and keyword referrals on your site? Google Analytics is a free Web-based tool that will give you rich data on how people interact with your Web site content.

    Visit Google Analytics to learn more.



    With Google Analytics, you can even get "real time" reports of what is happening on your website:

    REAL TIME REPORTING




    In addition, you can track the following type of website activities:

    AUDIENCE
     


    ACQUISITION



    BEHAVIOR



    NOTE: For Wix.com accounts, you must upgrade to a paid account with a unique vanity domain name in order to connect Google Analytics tracking to your webpage. A free alternative that does work with Wix.com is StatCounter.

    Additional Resources:

    There are several online resources that you can help you better understand and analyze the data that you get from the various Web analytics services.


    Adding Google Analytics to your Wix site -- and a free alternative option: StatCounter

    Wix only allows accounts with a connected domain to add Google Analytics. If you have a connected domain, then use these instructions to get started.

    No custom domain? There are also free alternatives to consider, such as StatCounter. Here are instructions for installing the tracking code on Wix.