Pin of the Month – Google Maps


Google Maps infographic by

Google Maps infographic by


The ‘Pin of the Month’ for April 2014 is one that was actually sent my way by Louann Fadrik of  This ties in nicely with one of the recent themes written about here on – my personal loyalty to Google’s products.  This month’s ‘Pin of the Month’ focuses specifically on Google Maps and how it is changing location-based data and business.

At the top of the infographic we see the future of location-based data and what many believe the future holds for us.  “Location awareness will be built into everything” and I find it hard to argue with that (just take a look at the stories from our mobile marketing-focused #SundayMusings from a few weeks ago).  Google Maps will likely be the backbone to much of this given their strength and market share of its API.

The part that I find most fascinating in this infographic is the section on the “Components of Google Maps” and how Trekker actually works.  The amount of data that they are collecting and piecing together on a day basis is, frankly, amazing.  I’m even more interested to see what Google does with Waze now after digesting this.

After taking you through a timeline of events at Google, the infographic provides us with a peek into what companies are built on Google Maps API, including Uber, Airbnb, and thousands more.  Google’s success led to the launch of OpenStreetMaps, which has been adopted by, among others, Apple and Foursquare.  As they say, innovation typically drives growth and that is what Google Maps seems to be doing for location-based business.

I want to take a second to thank Louann for reaching out to me directly.  She saw my articles on Google and thought I might be interested in this and was absolutely correct.

For those unfamiliar with our Pin of the Month, each month we’ll be posting one of the better infographics, pictures, etc. that we typically find on our Pinterest page and (over-) analyzing it in a blog write-up.  Follow Shore Branding on Pinterest for frequent updates across branding and digital-related information and infographics.

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 4-13-14

Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

Welcome back to a new #SundayMusings w/ Shore Branding!  Our bi-weekly write-up has a new focus topic this week and that is content marketing.  Content marketing has become all the rage, but truth be told, I see it as a fancy phrase that is an extension of your branding efforts.  I’m sure many will disagree with this sentiment, but that’s my view on the latest catchphrase in marketing.

#1 – 9 Tips for Creating Content that Gets Shared – via 

Premise: Jeff Bullas provides his top nine tips for creating content that gets shared.  From identifying your audience/target through “making information accessible”, Jeff provides a good amount of context for each of his nine tips.

Thoughts: All nine of the tips found this article are useful and ought to be kept in mind as you (re-)focus on your content.  The one tip that seems highly relevant given our changes to these #SundayMusings write-ups is “#6 – Pay attention to trends”.  That was the main reason for moving to a topic-focused style of writing for #SundayMusings and our numbers and shares across social media have improved. 

#2 – “Content Marketing Without Being Pushy” – via   

Premise: Heidi Cohen points to a recent study that suggests “less than 50% of customers trust any form of advertising”.  With that number in mind you find the real purpose of content marketing – selling without being viewed as pushing your brand/business on consumers.  Heidi then offers up five types of content marketing and, separately, five tips to support sales conversions.

Thoughts: The one type of content marketing that I want to call out is “#3 – Offer show and tell”.  Heidi mentions Instagram, Pinterest, and including videos in your content marketing efforts.  While I am a big believer of not being everywhere for the sake of having your site on each and every social media platform, you probably want to focus on at least one of these three in order to improve the visual appeal for your brand/business.

Within the five tips to sales conversions, I like the wording Heidi has gone within #3.  Rather than “call-to-action”, she suggests a “coax-to-action”.  Well played.

#3 – “Content Marketing Metrics Your CEO Cares About” via  

Premise: A common question for marketers is how to measure and track the success of your content marketing efforts.  What metrics do you use and how do you analyze them?  The author recommends measuring both your “content performance” and the “impact on sales”.  From there, what you want to keep an eye on in terms of reporting are “leads to conversions”, “money saved”, and “customer retention / churn”.

Thoughts: Aside from the Kurt Russell reference, this write-up caught my attention as it provides you with options on what to measure.  There are several angles that you can take and measure within the Performance and Sales buckets – you need to decide what they are and what makes the most sense for your business.

#4 – “SlideShare for Business: Tips and Tricks for Success from #SMMW14” via 

Premise: Simply put, you are missing out if you aren’t leveraging SlideShare as part of your digital marketing efforts.  The author provides three key reasons for using SlideShare – 1. Huge visibility, 2. Relevant audience, and 3. Search visibility.  The author then provides several recommendations on how to optimize your efforts on the site itself and several “tricks from the pros”.

Thoughts: The “tricks” section is very useful and a nice checklist to keep in mind if you want to incorporate SlideShare into your digital marketing plans.  Using hashtags was not a surprising recommendation, but SlideShare isn’t top of mind when it comes to using the tool/technique.  It certainly helps being found when searching for specific topics.

#5 – “Content Engagement on LinkedIn Now Measured by Simple, Powerful Metric” via  

Premise: LinkedIn has launched their own Content Marketing Score to help businesses manage and develop their content strategy.  The score is a simple percentage calculation dividing the engaged members by the active audience available.  The platform will provide recommendations on how to improve your efforts, will provide competitive benchmarks, and allow you to do some basic filtering down of the data.

Thoughts: The Content Marketing Score was just one of several new features that LinkedIn is providing businesses with.  The metric will be an easy to understand snapshot of how your efforts are performing over time and you’ll be able to track the good and bad from your various posts, topics, etc.  LinkedIn isn’t the first, and likely won’t be the last, social network to offer up their own analytics platform.  If you have been reading #SundayMusings for a while now, you know that I am a fan of these efforts from each site.  The more you learn, the more you can adapt your strategy.

Are you running a LinkedIn page?  Have you begun using the new features?  If so, let me know how they are via email or in the contact form below.  Thanks!

#6 – “7 Big Brands are Succeeding in Content Marketing … You Can Too” via  

Premise: The author dives into seven big brands that are successfully implementing a strong content marketing strategy – through very different avenues.  P&G and Colgate have developed highly engaging reference communities that tie together their brands with experts in those particular fields, video, etc.  Kraft and General Mills have developed branded web sites to provide recipes, tips, etc. for their respective communities.

Thoughts: Building communities is a great way to allow your consumers to help build your own brand’s equity.  These engaged users can become somewhat of a brand ambassador for you – not only online, but also promoting the site (or your business) via word-of-mouth.

What online communities do you engage with?  I have joined a number of G+ Communities and also have active discussions about sports on several sites.

Tweet of the Week:

I found the above tweet from Uberflip and wanted to pass it along as one to keep an eye one each and every week if you are consistently looking to read more on content marketing.  Every week they provide a number of links in their “Content Roundup”.

Those are the content marketing stories that have caught my attention over the past few weeks.  Hope you enjoyed the latest #SundayMusings!  Have a great week!

Pin of the Month – Restaurant Mobile Apps


Infographic credit to

Infographic credit to


Our March 2014 ‘Pin of the Month’ includes a bit of information on the key talking point this month on – loyalty.  The infographic itself was found on’s blog and was immediately selected based on the first of five tips it provided to restaurants who are considering a mobile app.

The infographic contains a wealth of information on the success of a number of restaurant chains and their respective mobile platforms.  The five recommendations for building a stronger mobile app include: Loyalty, Payment, Marketing, Ordering, and Entertainment.  As you can see above, each recommendation comes with a handful of successful case studies / brands that have done their part to engage their customer base.

Is it surprising at all to see Starbucks in the lead mention spot under two of the mobile tips?  The coffee maker has led the charge in changing consumer behaviorisms and their mobile efforts are just one of the more recent examples.  I find it amazing that from 2012 to 2013, they increased their mobile loyalty program by 86%.

A second eye opener from the infographic is the percentage of mobile ordering that is being done at Papa John’s (45%) and Domino’s Pizza (40%).  Has Pizza Hut missed the ball on this one relative to its national competitors?  I’d say so.

What I really enjoyed about this month’s ‘Pin of the Month’ is that it didn’t focus solely on national, big name brands.  Sure, you have probably heard of the vast majority of these examples, but there are several, local based brands that have turned their mobile platform into a success story.  Those successes came through various mobile plans as well; with Earl of Sandwich and Marble Slab Creamery leveraging their loyalty programs, while a Papa Murphy’s franchise in Nevada rolled out a SMS campaign to get people in their door.

Finally, as you can see on the last tip, your brand doesn’t have to always be direct selling to the customer.  You can build engagement by entertaining your audience through games or witty characters on your mobile app.  We don’t have a Bojangles near us, but I had to take a look at their app after seeing this infographic!

What brand/restaurant has caught your own attention through their mobile efforts?  Let us know in the comments below and we’ll take a look at their app!

For those unfamiliar with our Pin of the Month, each month we’ll be posting one of the better infographics, pictures, etc. from our Pinterest page and (over-) analyzing it in a blog write-up.  For those that may have missed our other loyalty-related write-ups this month, here is the Sunday Musings that introduced the topic at the beginning of the month and here is our first “Loyalty to Brands” write-up.  If you are interested in guest blogging about a brand or company that you find yourself loyal to, please let me know!

Pin of the Month – USA Today’s Super Bowl Ad Meter


Infographic credit: USA Today

Infographic credit: USA Today

February’s ‘Pin of the Month’ takes one last look at this year’s Super Bowl advertising.  While many were busy watching the Seahawks bury the Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII, a number of others were waiting for the commercial breaks to rate the ads.

This month’s infographic is from USA Today, and Keyhole and summarizes the results from the USA Today Ad Meter, an annual look at the best Super Bowl ads since 1989.  The past two years have brought in the public’s opinions into the polling and you see the results above.

It is no surprise to see Budweiser’s “Puppy Love” ad at the top of the list – it has been on just about any write-up you will find out there – excluding our review which had the ad “plummet” all the way down to second best of the evening.

In fact, the only ad in the top five of USA Today’s Ad Meter results that didn’t make it into our review was Doritos’ “Cowboy Kid”.  I found their “Time Machine” ad to be a little bit more enjoyable and it definitely had stronger branding elements.

Here are a few thoughts on the rest of the infographic, as it breaks down the results further – this year’s Ad Meter continued down the path of breaking down the data further and making it more ‘rich’:

  • While you might call in to question if this is a true ROI, the infographic puts a nice spin on how successful several companies were based on their ad spend for the event.
  • We get to see the geographic breakdown of the 6,000+      voters – not too surprising how this map looks.
  • Taking a look at how many votes were placed over time and given the outcome of the game, it isn’t surprising to see that more votes were taking place as the game progressed.
  • For the first time in its history, the Ad Meter was broken out by various demographics and you’ll see that there is a near-even split on gender.
  • Opening up the Ad Meter to the public has created a new platform for exposure for USA Today and the use of the “#AdMeter” hashtag was certainly worthwhile, creating over 78 million impressions on Super Bowl Sunday.  (Wow!)

Are there any surprises in the data from your point of view?  The highest rated ads tend to align with many of the thoughts seen across various write-ups found online.

For those unfamiliar with our Pin of the Month, each month we’ll be posting one of the better infographics, pictures, etc. from our Pinterest page and (over-) analyzing it in a blog write-up.  Hope you enjoyed this month’s Pin!

Seven Tips When Leveraging Pinterest for Your Brand

Seven Tips When Leveraging Pinterest for Your Brand

Seven Tips When Leveraging Pinterest for Your Brand

Since launching in 2010, few social media sites have seen the rapid growth and success that has been afforded to Pinterest.  What took the network to another level, just one year later, was the launch of its iPhone app.  The platform hasn’t looked back.  When used appropriately, Pinterest can and will have a positive impact on your brand/business.

With that in mind, here are seven branding tips to consider when using Pinterest as part of your digital marketing portfolio.

#1 – Fill in your profile completely  [Read more...]

Pin of the Month – The Business of the NFL


The Business of the NFL (Infographic by:

The Business of the NFL
(Infographic by:

The NFL’s Conference Championships are this coming Sunday (1/19) and they really could not have asked for two better match-ups.  With that in mind, this month’s ‘Pin of the Month’ is from and takes a look the business of the NFL and the brand that it has become here in the US.

The NFL is the clear number one sport in the US these days, raking in billions of dollars every year for the team’s owners.  This infographic breaks down the state of the industry, from the almost $40 billion combined value across the 32 franchises, down to the individual teams and players. [Read more...]

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 12-29-13

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding - Happy Holidays! (Photo credit:

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – Happy Holidays!
(Photo credit:

Happy holidays everyone!  Welcome to a festive Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding, the top stories in branding and digital marketing from the past week!  This week’s stories have a Christmas theme to them.

#1 – Why Pepsi Should Get Mean At Christmas And Brand The Grinch – via 

Premise: Coca-Cola has put a stranglehold around Christmas marketing and the use of Santa Claus and this write-up suggests that Pepsi leverage the Grinch in an effort to create their own branding benefits around the holiday.  Pepsi should take the “bad boy role” and run with it during the holidays.

Thoughts: This is not a bad idea at all for Pepsi to consider.  As the author points out, society tends to love the bad boy role these days.  With the right amount of resources behind it, a tie-in with the Grinch should certainly build some buzz around the holidays and the branding could be a hit.  Who doesn’t love this guy …? [Read more...]

Pin of the Month – Social Media Mistakes in 2013

The biggest social media mistakes of 2013 (Infographic by

The biggest social media mistakes of 2013
(Infographic by

It is time to look back at the misfiring’s in social media in 2013.  This month’s ‘Pin of the Month’ is from Masters in Marketing and takes a look at several brands’ misguided attempts at social media.  While we took a look into the future in yesterday’s Sunday Musings, let’s take a step back and reflect on several moments in 2013.

The year got off to a rough start with HMV and Tesco.  The latter had a scheduled tweet (ugh!) sent out that coincided with their horsemeat scandal.  Well done … The Onion took things too far in February, with an offensive comment towards a 9 year old.  You probably remember Burger King being hacked earlier in the year, with negative tweets sent out about the company. [Read more...]

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 12-1-13

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding - Thanksgiving Edition (Photo Credit:

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – Thanksgiving Edition
(Photo Credit:

Welcome to a special Thanksgiving edition of Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding, the top stories in branding and digital marketing from the past week!  As we have treated other major holidays, this week’s Sunday Musings have a holiday twist to them, covering off on Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and this weekend’s Small Business Saturday. [Read more...]

Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding – 11-24-13

Branding and Digital Marketing

Branding and Digital Marketing

Welcome to Sunday Musings w/ Shore Branding, the top stories in branding and digital marketing from the past week!  We’re heading into the short work week here in the US with the Thanksgiving holiday upon us!

#1 – 12 Actionable Pinterest Tips To Increase Sales – via 

Premise: Since launching, Pinterest has become a platform to help drive sales across various industries.  While it started as a place to display food, clothing, and more, it has turned into a marketing machine and an e-commerce platform.  Heidi’s write-up includes seven tips to increase the likelihood of others re-pinning your material and five overall tactics to increase/improve results. [Read more...]