The Portent Blog

allies-featured Featured

20 Nov, 2014

Allies, not rockstars: Influencer research for us mortals

By Ian Lurie

Most marketers equate ‘influencer research’ with ‘finding a celebrity who will endorse for free.’ I call that the Rockstar Method. It’s a miserable approach. Ready-and-waiting rockstar social amplifiers are slightly less common than mint-condition K cars. The Rockstar Method has its place with major brands, pure luck and the well-connected. Mere mortals like you and… Read More

mySuperLamePic_37a64fc2f089fd843a8e6b67e2bf0754 SEO

18 Dec, 2014

Is Duplicate Content Really a Problem?

By Kaitlin McMichael

The short answer is yes. We have written extensively on the subject before: SEO Obviousness: Duplicate content sucks, Duplicate content sin #1: Pagination, Duplicate content sin #2: Default page linking, SEO worst practices: The content duplication toilet bowl of death, and 5 SEO Strategies We Swear Aren’t Going Anywhere. So we have done our due… Read More

research word on wood stamps and books PPC

2 Dec, 2014

8 Free Keyword Research Tools for PPC Advertising

By Erica Opsvig

Whether it’s SEO or PPC advertising, search engine marketing campaigns should begin with keyword research. This research is arguably the most important task for the foundation of all SEM efforts. It not only gives marketers insight into the mind of their audience, but helps bridge the gap between potential customers and the products or services… Read More

Just Say No Project Management

25 Nov, 2014

Bad Behaviors That Make Me a Better Project Manager

By Ariana Burgess

I have learned over the years that there are a few behaviors which are normally considered impolite or taboo, but are extremely helpful when it comes to managing projects and teams and getting things done. Saying NO: For a Libra, saying no is not easy. I like to have balance and harmony, make people happy. So saying no… Read More

Pass the Mobile Test SEO

19 Nov, 2014

5 Ways Your Site Might Fail Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test

By George Freitag

On Tuesday, Google announced a new label in search results that states whether or not a site is “mobile-friendly.” Now when you’re on your phone, you’ll know ahead of time if the site you’re thinking about visiting is optimized for your device. Accompanying that announcement, Google said that they are also experimenting with a ranking boost for sites… Read More

Tool Wall SEO

18 Nov, 2014

My (Insanely Large) List of SEO Tools & Other Useful Resources

By David Portney

I’m just about to reach the 5 year mark working in the online marketing industry, and one thing that I’ve always found remarkable is how open and sharing people in this line of work tend to be. Whether it’s strategies, tactics, updates, techniques or tools – folks in this space do a lot of sharing,… Read More

email-symbols Internet Marketing

13 Nov, 2014

Symbols in subject lines, AKA the resurrection of Wingdings

By Tracy Beach

I’ve worked at Portent for 14 years now and this is my first blog post. You might ask yourself, “why now?” “Why does he start with this subject?” The answer is that nothing in the past 14-plus years has been more exciting, more inspiring, and maybe even more important than the recent technological advancements that have allowed us… Read More

tulos-agency PPC

6 Nov, 2014

A Big Idea: The International Geek Exchange

By Elizabeth Marsten

As a part of our Big Idea series, I wanted to share more detail to a special pilot program that I took part in recently and will be presenting on in Dallas at State of Search later this month. It’s the International Geek Exchange that Toni Voutilainen, a senior PPC specialist of the Tulos Agency… Read More

confirmobserve Social Media

5 Nov, 2014

How to: Do a Twitter Audit in 1 Hour Or Less

By Ian Lurie

I have a somewhat-random, step-by-step routine for auditing my own Twitter account (world, really, but I start with my account). I wrapped it up in a presentation. This is not a scientific method kind of thing. It’s more of a take-a-look-at-how-things-went-and-avoid-putting-both-feet-in-my-mouth kind of thing: Confirm, Observe, Adjust: How to audit your Twitter world an 1… Read More

Gymnast woman flexible body standing on arms, training stretchin Design & Development

4 Nov, 2014

The Agile Approach to design and development. It really works!

By Brock Reed

Back some 15 years ago when I first entered into the creative agency world as a Project Manager, I was taught how to manage and lead projects in a traditional and linear way. Each team member, each discipline, and every contributor had their place along the project path.  Once the strategist was done setting the big… Read More

data-highlighter SEO

30 Oct, 2014

Google’s Data Highlighter: Your New Favorite Backup Plan

By George Freitag

We all know the importance of Schema markup and rich snippets on your search results. We’ve written about the importance of getting markup implemented on your web page and getting rich snippets showing in your search results. And you should. Schema markup is the best solution to getting rich snippets to show up in search… Read More

36tools_smushit Internet Marketing

28 Oct, 2014

43 tools for modern marketers

By Ian Lurie

Modern marketers are mutts: We have to write, edit, produce, plan, measure, learn, listen, speak and otherwise pull miracles out of our rear ends on a daily basis. We need tools. This is my list. By the way, no one’s paid me, bribed me, threatened me or otherwise steered me towards their products. This is… Read More

HTML5 Design & Development

23 Oct, 2014

Why HTML5 is, like, REALLY IMPORTANT

By Matt Meyers

If you’ve worked in the world of the internet at any point in the past few years, there is a good chance you’ve heard of the hot new technology that is HTML5, and there is a similarly good chance that what you’ve heard is largely hype and buzzwords. While HTML5 does offer a great deal… Read More

youhaveit Random

23 Oct, 2014

How to: Hand off a task

By Ian Lurie

Ah, the handoff. Passing a task along to a co-worker seems simple: Send a quick e-mail, or say, “OK, all yours” and you’re done. Wrong. That’s the kind of handoff that sends everything swirling down the potty. There’s a right way to do handoffs. I did a SlideShare about how I approach handoffs. Have a… Read More

Woman on phone at her small business PPC

21 Oct, 2014

Google to Localize Call Extensions. Hurrah?

By Timothy Johnson

Starting in early November, Google will allow advertisers to use local area codes in their call extensions that utilize Google forwarding numbers.  Previously, you had two options: use your own number and lose the ability to track calls in AdWords, or use an (866) forwarding number randomly assigned to your ads. With this new feature,… Read More

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