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With Jim Collins

Best-selling author of Good to Great

With Jack Welch

Former CEO of General Electric and best-selling author

With Patrick Lencioni

Best-selling author of the Five Dysfunctions of a Team and other leading management books.

George Levy featured in Computer World magazine.

George Levy Speaking at World Innovation Forum

With Miguel Bose

International Spanish music superstar

With Calvin Klein

Fashion designer and CEO – Creator of one of the world’s leading fashion empires.

Facebook is rolling out a new series of targeting options for their display ads that will enable advertisers to more effectively reach and target Facebook users that may not be fans of their pages.

These new display ad targeting options, originally reported by InsideFacebook.com, will enable advertisers to show and target their display ads to users based on their email address, phone number and their user ID.

The opportunity of being able to display ads targeted to users based on their email address, phone number and other database and CRM Data is commonly known as “CRM Retargeting“, and has been available for some time in other large portals beyond Facebook but it is a new offering for the social network.

CRM Retargeting on Facebook based on email and telephone number makes perfect sense as it will allow brands to display their ads to more engaged prospects, and customers who are already on their CRM, email and telephone proprietary databases – but may not necessarily be their fans on Facebook.

How it all ties in

A good practical example of how this new type of targeting would be beneficial would be running a display ad campaign targeting a company’s list of email subscribers, with a call to action to Like a company’s Facebook page.

According to a Facebook spokesperson, in a test case from a select group of advertisers already using these targeting options, “a financial services company sought to convert current customers into fans of its Facebook page; the brand ended up doubling its fan base at a lower cost-per-fan than ever before.”

New options can be “layered on” for more precise targeting

For even more advanced targeting, these new options can be layered on top of the other available Facebook ad targeting options of age, gender, interest, location, etc.

By being able to have this additional level of precise targeting, advertisers who may have limited information on their databases such as just having an email address, will be able to run targeted display ad campaigns that fit the profile of their ideal customer against their list of email addresses.

In a related article about these new targeting options, ADWEEK presents the following potential use scenario:

“Having observed that a majority of its customers are women who live in affluent neighborhoods, a luxury retailer, for example, could then create a list featuring customers for whom it has only an email address or phone number and target them with Facebook ads geared towards women interested in jewelry and traveling.”

I’m “all in” on these new targeting options…

As a direct marketer who regularly works with databases in the millions of records, and which often usually only contain a name and an email address, having the option to cross the list with the other targeting options opens up a new world of advertising possibilities.

This is a great move by Facebook and I can’t wait to implement these new CRM Retargeting options in a digital marketing campaign.

How about you?

Are you currently running display ad campaigns on Facebook?

Do you plan on using these new targeting options? If so… how?


Subscribe to Breakthrough Digital Marketing today! It’s free and packed with the finest stuff on web & mobile. The subscribe box is on the top right of the blog or just click hereAnd don’t worry – I promise never to sell or rent your email address.


You’ve seen it happen and you want it…

A story gets unleashed on social media and before you know it, it takes a life of its own.

Like an expert surfer, catching a massive swell, it picks up speed carried on the back of word of mouth and viral sharing… The message travels globally in a matter of moments bringing instant fame and fortune to the originators… (Ok, the fortune part is not necessarily guaranteed, but the fame is definitely there.)

In a world where marketers are having an increasingly difficult time getting their message across, and traditional marketing and advertising is landing on deaf ears – those who use social media effectively are able to break through with their communications, and reach their target audience worldwide in an instant.

How to trigger a wave of social media attention.

As I mentioned in my previous post “I get by with a little help from my friends…”, the Bloggers Hub (now expanded to become the Social Media Space) is a digital PR initiative and sponsorship activation I developed with HSM which has become a regular annual tradition for the company.

My goal was to create a new revenue-driving digital sponsorship opportunity, while at the same time using social media to drive mass global awareness for HSM and its sponsors.

Enter the “Bloggers Hub”, an annual gathering of the world’s top business bloggers at the World Innovation Forum and World Business Forum.

How a wave of social media attention gets triggered…

When you bring together and connect like-minded and socially active business influencers, who are passionate about the topics covered at the events, it sets off a domino effect of exposure and awareness for the event and its topics.

As each of the bloggers informs their audiences and followers, and they learn of something that interests them and which otherwise would have been limited to those physically attending the event, the message is spread worldwide via word of mouth, generating a “wave of attention.”

Because of the wave generated by the Bloggers Hub, instead of reaching “just” +/- 900 (World Innovation Forum) and 5,000 (World Business Forum) attendees live at the event venues, the Bloggers Hub effectively magnifies and carries the conversation about the event to millions of people worldwide.

The effect is so profound that the Hashtags for the events regularly become one of the top trending topic on Twitter, as well as sparking hundreds of Blog posts and press mentions in just a matter of days.

Key to Success: You Need to Both Spark AND Monitor the Conversation

Just as important to the success of the wave, while these conversations are taking place, there is a group of social media managers handling the HSM and WOBI social media accounts worldwide and actively “listening on Social Media.” This team is looking for opportunities to further engage the audience, encourage conversation and address any negative comments that may derail the wave. (See “The web is talking about you… Are you listening?“)

A Powerful One, Two Combo…

This combination of both 1) proactively sparking discussions on social media with the help of multiple influencers, and 2) actively listening and engaging audience members who join the conversation, is the fuel that feeds and “steers” the fire and massive scale of the Bloggers Hub.

In case you are wondering what it all looks like…

Here’s a slideshow including some images from past Bloggers Hubs:


3 Questions that Lead to Breakthroughs:

1. How are you leveraging social media in your PR and marketing efforts?

2. Are you finding and developing ways of connecting and engaging with influencers?

3. Are you actively listening to conversations on social media and answering back when your audience is talking to or about your brand?

Subscribe to Breakthrough Digital Marketing today! It’s free and packed with the finest stuff on web & mobile. The subscribe box is on the top right of the blog or just click here. And don’t worry – I promise never to sell or rent your email address.

Photo credit: Flickr anhonorablegerman


I found this excellent infographic produced by marketing firm Neolane that captures the first 19 years of the growth of Apps, along with a look and estimates for 2016 and beyond.

(Click on the image to view the full size Infographic)

It also features some valuable and effective ways in which Apps and Mobile Marketing fit into an integrated, cross-channel marketing mix.

Click on the Image for the Full Size Infographic

Looking back at what’s happened in just the first 19 years, it’s hard to believe how far and how quickly we’ve gotten to where we stand today…

“There’s An App for That” is not only a clever marketing line, but a reality.

You want to remember where you parked your car, but you want to be reminded like a pirate? There’s an app for that.

You want an app that will generate a dog whistleto train and confuse your dog? There’s an app for that too.

Are you a Cat person? Do you want instead a game that will let your cat chase a laser beam? There’s definitely an app for that.

Really… Whatever you may be looking for to invest your time and energy in– there’s an app for that.

Way Back When

I remember my first Palm Pilot in the late 90’s.

Back then I carried everywhere two devices, my cellular flip phone and my trusted Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) where I kept my calendar, some basic notes and all my contacts in the world.

Even then, there was already talk about how all devices would merge into one… Still, the technology worked pretty well, I’d already bought both devices and it was hard to imagine how quickly this consolidation would take place.

Fast forward to 2002 with the first email capable Blackberry Smartphone launched by Research in Motion, and again to 2007 with the release of the first iPhone with Apps preloaded on the phone.

I Had To Have One… So Did Everyone Else.

As the technology improved and prices for the devices dropped, as well as the fact that cellphone carriers began subsidizing cellphones as part of the mobile contract, I did my share of multiple upgrades and bought several different Blackberry Smartphones of my own.

These were giant steps forward, but it wasn’t until July 10, 2008 with the launch of the Apple App Store  which seamlessly integrated with the iPhone that the true power of the app economy really took hold.

Where We Are Today…

With over 25 Billion App downloads on the Apple App Store and more than 15 Billion on Google Play by mid 2012, the age of apps has really taken over.

This excellent infographic produced by marketing firm Neolane captures the first 19 years of the growth of Apps along with a look at 2016 and some valuable and effective ways in which Apps and Mobile fit into an integrated, cross-channel marketing mix.

Where We Are Going.

As a digital marketer, I’ve been increasingly marketing via mobile web and apps to drive business results with great results both on mCommerce numbers and in overall traffic and engagement.

Having seen exponential growth in mobile traffic on every analytics report I view, especially since the launch of the iPad in 2010, and in multiple published studies, along with constant growth in mCommerce sales – I seriously encourage (and wholeheartedly hope) that you are paying attention and placing focus on mobile as well.

So tell me…

Are you currently using Apps and Mobile in your overall marketing mix?

If so, what have you done so far and what are you planning on doing next?


Subscribe to Breakthrough Digital Marketing today! It’s free and packed with the finest stuff on web & mobile. The subscribe box is on the top right of the blog or just click here. And don’t worry – I promise never to sell or rent your email address.

I am currently working with the WOBI team on the last minute details for the 2012 World Innovation Forum taking place on June 20-21 at New York City Center.

Our theme for this year’s event is “Provoke change. Shape the future.”

In keeping with the theme, we have been actively working to push the envelope of the event and innovate in multiple areas.

Beyond having a phenomenal lineup, that includes some of the most brilliant minds in innovation including Guy Kawasaki, Ray Kurzweil, Sir Ken Robinson and Clay Shirky – this year’s event takes the thought leadership and lessons into new directions by leveraging the Web, Mobile and Social Media in new ways.

Among the many innovations we are rolling out at WIFNY…


Social Media Space
Working with the WOBI team and looking for new ways to expand the the annual Bloggers Hub, the “Hub” has now evolved into the Social Media Space.

Beyond merely changing the name of the initiative, the new Social Media Space is truly an evolution of the concept that encompasses the fact that in keeping with today’s world and adapting to new technologies, Blogs are only part of the global conversation.

The new and improved gathering of online influencers includes personalities that may not have a Blog per se, but have a brilliant voice and following on other new media and digital channels including Twitter, Tumblr, YouTube, Podcasts, Facebook and other platforms.

The official event hashtag this year is #WIFNY and non-attendees will be able to track all the action from the Social Media Space and the entire social media conversation on a special Social Media Space Facebook page being announced this week.

The social media and online enhancements this year go beyond the featured Bloggers and online influencers, and extend to the audience in general.

Bringing Everybody Onboard

This shift takes into account that in today’s world, the majority of event attendees have mobile devices and are looking for ways to take advantage of their smartphones and tablets.

To expand on their event experience and empower attendees to use the power of the mobile web, we’ve added the following elements:

Free WIFI for all attendees
Taking advantage of the newly renovated infrastructure at New York City Center, we will be making WIFI available to all attendees. Although it sounds like this would be a simple thing to accomplish, providing WIFI for all attendees has been a major challenge at many of the New York City event venues we work with. This ability to provide WIFI smoothly and efficiently was one of the deciding elements of our move to the New York City Center from the Best Buy Theater.

Social Media Bar
A new element at this year’s event will be the Social Media Bar, a gathering of Social Media Experts who will be present on site to answer questions and give guidance to attendees on all things “Social Media.”

Official WIFNY Event Mobile App
We are working this year with an event mobile app provider called “Inludus.” The WIFNY mobile app will enable event attendees instant access to a variety of valuable services including communicating with each other, downloading event materials, rating sessions, getting maps and information on all the activities and sessions at the Forum, and much more.

Innovation Video Booth
A special video booth in partnership with MIT Executive Education will be available for attendees to record their thoughts and opinions on Innovation, which will be shared on Social Media worldwide.

Mobile Device Charging Stations
All those Tweets, status updates, check-ins and more take a lot of power from the audience’s mobile devices…

To “keep the party going” and make sure that no device runs out of battery during the event, we have partnered with brightbox to provide charging stations on premise.

These amazing charging stations are simple and secure, and I can’t get enough of them. I saw them and used their phone charging station at Fast Company’s Innovation Uncensored event (where I was attending as a sponsor with the C2MTL team) and I was blown away by how brilliant and efficient the brightbox technology was.

Taking it even further and webcasting the action to an even broader  global audience…

For this year’s event, we have expanded our event webcasting offering in several new directions.

WOBI’s event webcasts have grown beyond simply offering the opportunity to view a single event either live or On Demand via the web and mobile devices. With our new annual subscription WOBILive, we now offer the opportunity to “attend virtually” a wide range of WOBI events all around the world.

WOBI has partnered with the Wall Street Journal and will be offering the opportunity to view the World Innovation Forum via their WSJLive offering. This will bring WIFNY to a whole new range of devices including Apple iPad, Yahoo! Connected TV, Boxee, Samsung Smart TV, and many others.

The list I’ve presented is just a sample of all the innovations we are currently rolling out at this year’s World Innovation Forum, and there are many more which are being announced and rolled out at the event.

To keep up with the action, I invite you to follow @georgelevy and WOBI on Twitter and search the official hashtag #WIFNY where we will all be sharing the action from the event.

Hope to see you at WIFNY and Tweet @ me if you have any thoughts, questions or suggestions on how we can innovate even further!

Subscribe to Breakthrough Digital Marketing today! It’s free and packed with the finest stuff on web & mobile. The subscribe box is on the top right of the blog or just click hereAnd don’t worry – I promise never to sell or rent your email address.

This week I will be attending the 2012 BlogWorld & New Media Expo at Javits Center (Hashtag #BWENY)

Taking place on June 5-7, the event brings together over 30,000 attendees from over 50 countries.

With three full days of sessions featuring major heavy hitters including my friends Derek Halpern of Social Triggers and Jonathan Fields of Tribal Author, Scott Stratten of UnMarketing and Jason Falls of Social Media Explorer among others, the event looks like it’s going to hit one out of the park.

There are 14 tracks at the event:

  • Business of Blogging
  • Content Creation
  • Mobile
  • Platforms and Apps
  • Publishing
  • Super Sessions
  • Web TV
  • Community
  • Keynotes
  • Monetization
  • Podcasting
  • Social Media Business Summit
  • Traffic and Distribution
  • Workshops

I personally have packed my calendar with sessions in the Mobile, Social Media Business & Platforms and Apps tracks, and I’m definitely looking forward to the learning experience.

I’ll be attending all three days popping in and out of different sessions and networking with attendees. If you happen to be attending, Tweet me @georgelevy and let’s get together.

I’ve already downloaded the BlogWorld iPad App and packing sessions into my calendar.

Hope to see you there!

Stay tuned as I’ll be sharing lessons learned from these three info packed days.

Subscribe to Breakthrough Digital Marketing today! It’s free and packed with the finest stuff on web & mobile. The subscribe box is on the top right of the blog or just click here. And don’t worry – I promise never to sell or rent your email address.

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About Levy
George Levy is an award-winning digital marketing and CRM expert with more than 15 years of experience creating and executing online and mobile strategies.
He is the former Vice President of Online Marketing for World Business Forum (WOBI) and a co-founding team member of Yupi.com, an Internet startup acquired by Microsoft Corporation to become what is now MSN Latino. Continue Reading ...

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