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Your business doesn’t operate in a vacuum.

There are countless outside factors that influence whether or not you’ll turn a profit. Your competition plays a huge role in the success of your business.

That’s why it’s so important for you to take the proper steps to gain a competitive edge on other brands in your industry. But, as I’m sure you’ve quickly realized, this is much easier said than done.

The ease of access to the Internet has amplified your competition at an exponential rate.

You’re no longer just competing with a few other local or regional businesses. You’ve got to worry about national and global brands as well.

What makes your company unique? What differentiating factors help you stand out? Why would a customer buy from you over your competitors?

These questions are difficult to answer, especially if you aren’t constantly researching the competition. But with so many other brands to keep an eye on, this can seem like a daunting task.

Not to worry. There are plenty of online tools to help you keep tabs on your competitors. I’ve narrowed down this list to the top 10 I found to be the most helpful.

If you try these out, it will be much easier for you to brand and market your business, taking into account what your competitors are doing.

1. Google Alerts

No list of online monitoring tools would be complete without Google Alerts.

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We have two recently released, well-authored research reports on email marketing that provide some very different—not contradictory, but different—assessments of email marketing as it stands today and where we’re headed. In this article, we’ll give you a concise look at each and the most relevant takeaways from each report, as they pertain to you and your business. Presumptuous of us? Nah. We know how marketers—and their extended teams—tend to think about such things.

You can access the full reports from the Litmus 2018 State of Email and the Campaign Monitor 2018 Email Predictions.

What makes this mash-up so interesting is that one is based on a great deal of quantifiable backward-looking data, and the other is based on predictions from a number of experts in the field. Does the analytical data support the forward-looking recommendations? Read on.

We’re big fans of Litmus and the services they provide, yet we’re not a shill for their services or offerings. They just provide really good and essential services to email marketers. So, it will not come as a surprise their report is chock full of solid insights, technological changes across th... Read More

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Social media can be pretty overwhelming sometimes.

Especially if you’re running an agency or managing the social media accounts of other businesses.

How do you juggle and manage the many hats you need to wear as a social media manager?

Creating content, scheduling shares, engaging with followers, repurposing content, sharing others’ content, community management… This list could go on forever.

The only way to effectively manage social media at scale is with the use of social media management tools that can improve your efficiency, and over time get you better results.

The tools we discuss below help you do that. Many of them have similar features, however, they are all different in terms of the BEST way to use them. Choose the ones that fit your needs and give them a whirl.

Here are 17 of the best social media management tools available:

1. Agorapulse

Agorapulse is first on the list because it’s the social media... Read More

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The influence of social media is present in nearly every aspect of your lives…

Especially when it comes to business, where it is arguably changing the game each day. In the past, companies could use their influence to convert potential consumers through paid ads or some other marketing strategy. Social networks have changed all of that, which is best evident by the recent emergence of influencer marketing.

People no longer turn to companies to inform them about what they want or need. They look to other people, people whose influence and expertise regarding a certain industry is valued among the users. Take for example, YouTube vloggers. They have millions of followers, their videos have hundreds of millions of views, and companies are lining up to collaborate with them. And it’s not just YouTube. It’s pretty much the same story when it comes to Twitter, Instagram, or Pinterest.

As you can see, the focus has shifted to individuals, and people respond better to being addressed directly, as opposed to being served some marketing strategy by a faceless company. This is definitely the era of influencers, so let’s take a look at 11 ways you can make infl... Read More

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