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3 Email Marketing Trends Small Businesses Must Know

Posted by on 9:38 am in Blog | 0 comments

Before 2015 even began, a full 73 percent of marketers said one of their core business strategies was email marketing. This shows just how important this promotional tactic has become, but like all things in life, email marketing constantly evolves. It is because of this that small business owners must stay on top of evolving email trends. Video Integrated Into Email You may wonder, what is the point of integrating video directly into emails when you can just provide links to videos? The answer rests in consumers’ attention spans. When an email recipient has to leave your message to view a video, especially on sites like YouTube, they are inundated with additional videos, ads and other visual stimuli. Because this is distracting from the message, marketers are beginning to rely more heavily on in-email videos. Heavier Focus on Personalization It only takes one non-focused email for a consumer to mark your message as spam. If this occurs, all of your future messages will be filtered out, even if that was not the intent. This is why emails are becoming more personalized. This is more than just adding a greeting with a person’s name. With some marketing tools, you can have different messages sent to different segments of your list. If you separate your list by age, for instance, Millennials can get marketing emails focused on something different than those sent to senior citizens. Look into the many personalization tools available to see which is best for your business and email list. More Push towards Simplicity Wearable technology is hitting the scene like a storm. Unfortunately, this means changes will need to be made on email marketing. On these small screens, for instance, consumers will only see a small part of your email header and inner text. All of this will happen while on the go. So if you are unable to immediately grab their attention, your message will likely end up in the trash before they are even stationary to read it. Make sure your headers and text immediately grab their attention. Email marketing is not going anywhere. It is a marketing reality, so make sure that you are evolving with it. Resources:...

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Tips for Making Great Blogs for Content Marketing

Posted by on 9:51 am in Blog | 0 comments

Inbound marketing allows you to get customers to actively seek your business, and when looking at the top inbound strategies, blogging definitely shows up. When blogging, in fact, business-to-business marketer see around 67% more leads than their non-blogging counterparts. Of course, this is only true if you are blogging right. Blogging Consistently Regardless of the marketing strategy your company undertakes, you must be consistent with it. This holds true in blogging more than other areas. Once your blog catches on with consumers, they will start expecting new posts consistently. If this does not happen, these consumers usually find their way to other blogs. You will also see increases in search engine reach if you maintain your blog consistently. Do Not Forget Search Engine Optimization Blogging, along with all content marketing, is great because it brings in people who may have just been looking for information online. This occurs when you optimize your content for search engines. Always remember this while penning your posts. Your opening paragraph, headers and even image file names should contain industry keywords and cities you work in, and if this is done effectively, your blogs could find top spots on search engines. All Blog Content Should Be Scannable Bloggers are now nearly as trusted as family and friends, but this statistics does not really matter if people are not reading your full blog. To make sure consumers are getting through your content, your blogs must be easily scannable. Paragraphs should remain short, and you should utilize images and sub-headers to separate sections of content. Consumers will find your content easier to digest, so they will be around long enough for you to earn their trust. In the world of marketing, blogging has quickly become one of the big players. Make sure you are following the aforementioned tips if you hope to capitalize on the power of blogs. Resources: http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/business-blogging-in-2015...

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How to Combine Your Online and Offline Marketing

Posted by on 9:37 am in Blog | 0 comments

Online promotion is an essential part of successful marketing. With around 81 percent of consumers doing online research before making large purchases, it is obvious how important online promotion is. You should never ignore offline marketing, though, because if you combine the two, online and offline marketing can really benefit your company. Make Offline Events, Promote Them Online Creating and hosting an event is a quick way to get new customers in the door. Whether you are offering a free class or simply hosting a networking event for local professionals, the additional name recognition will certainly pay off. You should do more promotion, though, than simple flyers, newspaper ads or bulletin board postings. Use Facebook to make an “Event Page,” announce the event on all of your social media, utilize blogs to let people know how to prepare and even drop a few dollars on promoting the event via social media. Take Word-of-Mouth to the Online Realm Many businesses get tons of promotion from word-of-mouth marketing, but why wait for the word to spread organically? Instead, snag video of a patron speaking with one of your best employees. Since you have the camera out anyway, take a moment to interview a happy customer or simply take a photo of them enjoying your product. Happy consumers are a powerful tool both on and offline. Use Calls to Action Offline to Drive Traffic Online Calls to action are usually associated with online videos and blogs. In reality, these calls work with offline traditional marketing too. From TV commercials to billboards, tell people to visit your social media pages or website. Of course, a little bit of incentive in these calls goes a long way, but it is worth it to gain new customers. No marketing campaign proves successful with only one strategy. Because of this, you need to utilize marketing both on and offline to garner success. Resources:...

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Social Media Marketing Myths Businesses Must Avoid

Posted by on 8:39 am in Blog | 0 comments

With about one-quarter of internet users using Twitter and over 72 percent using Facebook, it has become obvious just how important social media marketing is. Having an effective social media strategy means making all the right moves for your business, but it also requires more than that. A great strategy can end in failure due to one mistake, and falling for the following social media myths can quickly lead to one of these mistakes. Scheduling Tools Can Handle Everything Scheduling tools are great for businesses on social media. Unfortunately, they are not enough. You need to sign on to respond to and interact with people engaged on the page. It is also ideal to post certain content, such as industry-related breaking news, as it happens. Use schedulers if they help, but never forget a live person is always better. The More Followers, The Better Many local business owners gauge their social media marketing success on how many followers they have. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Many page purchase followers and some companies gather additional followers through contests. In either of these cases, engagement is not likely to follow. Instead, focus on different metrics. The amount of ‘likes’ and ‘shares’ is one important indicator, but looking at click-through rates and actual comments is even better. This shows real interaction, and it will tell you which content is doing best for your business. Social Media Is Free Social media technically is free, but oftentimes, having social media success is not. Facebook, for instance, does not show your content to everyone who likes your page. It all depends on how much engagement the post gets. Sometimes, it is necessary to promote a post. Unless a business owner is skilled in marketing themselves, it is also essential to have a social media manager. There is no doubt that social media marketing can do great things for a company. All of these advantages, though, can be quickly undone if you do not fully understand social platforms. Refuse to fall for these myths, and you will be a step ahead of the competition. Resources:...

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3 Mistakes Local Businesses Make with Facebook Contests

Posted by on 8:02 am in Blog | 0 comments

Most local business owners have recognized the need to market on Facebook. With over 1.79 billion users signing onto the site monthly, it seems outright foolish not to utilize the site. One of the most effective ways of garnering reach on the site is through Facebook contests. Unfortunately, far too many budding entrepreneurs botch these contests. Avoiding the following mistakes can prevent this from happening.  Offering an Unrelated Prize Holding a contest where the prize is a weekend getaway, free airline flight or brand new iPad will obviously get plenty of engagement. Unfortunately, much of it will not be the engagement you want. This is because these prizes will attract everyone instead of just those who might actually purchase your product. Offer gift cards for your shop or something similarly related as a prize instead. Providing Ambiguous Rules When holding a Facebook contest, you must ensure that all rules are clearly defined. This means fully explaining method of entry, the prize, winner selection criteria and how long the contest will run. If your method of entry is something along the lines of “Like this status and share,” keep in mind that Facebook has rules against these types of contests. Local businesses do not typically have much to worry about, but to be on the safe side, many still use third-party apps. Regardless of how you run the contest, make sure you are clear on the rules. Failure to Promote Facebook Contest No one likes to inundate their fans with multiple posts about the same thing. This normal rule, though, does not apply when it comes to contests. It is not enough to make a single post and then forget about the contest until it is over. Share the status at least once a day, but make sure you are providing other useful content on the site as well. Successful Facebook contests can quickly get a business hundreds or even thousands of new followers. This is only, of course, if it is done right. Keep the aforementioned mistakes in mind when running your contest, and strive not to fall into their traps. Resources:...

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3 Tips for Improving Your Local Marketing Strategy

Posted by on 10:30 am in Blog | 0 comments

3 Strategies that Can Improve Your Local Marketing Game Teaming up with other local businesses can also provide a fantastic local strategy. Find companies that aren’t your competitors but have customers that are likely to need your service as well. Car rental businesses and hotels, for instance, are typically fine with handing out restaurant menus. If you run a floral boutique, you would be smart to team up with a bridal shop. Businesses that are not your direct competitors will often see the benefit in a mutually beneficial partnership. Get Out into the Community Local marketing for your firm, they cannot replace getting out there into the community. You want to do this yourself. Ask a few staff members to attend local events to promote the corporation. Better yet, get involved in charitable events and promote them through other marketing channels. People love socially responsible businesses, so do your best to become one. Work with Other Local Organizations Another great method of local marketing is working with other programs. Seek out businesses that are not in direct competition with you but whose customers may be interested in your product or service. If you own a bistro, take menus to local inns and car rental places. If you are a florist, trade business cards or pamphlets with bridal shops. As long as a company isn’t competing against you, they typically will have no problem with a quid pro quo relationship. Ask for Reviews from Customers While an advertising and marketing expert can ask people to review your service through online means, it is up to you to get on the front line and request these testimonials. Reviews are a significant part to local marketing. They enhance your SEO score and let locals know they can trust your enterprise. Remember, though, that you can’t offer incentives for positive reviews. You can, however, offer incentives for a client’s sincere opinion. In the grand scheme of things, all business is local. This is especially essential for small businesses to remember. And although hiring a marketing expert to handle the heavy hauling is a smart move, there are still some things you need to do all by yourself to...

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How Local Businesses Can Compete in the SEO World

Posted by on 7:27 am in Blog | 0 comments

David and Goliath: Competing in SEO with Large Enterprises Although it can be wearisome, local business owners acknowledge just how necessary search engine optimization (SEO) is for making their firm successful. If you snag Google’s top spot, for instance, your page will garner a click-through rate of almost 35 percent. If you are a private business owner, though, it may be hard to overcome competition from large corporations. If you remember these steps, though, your SEO strategy can still pay off huge. Opt for Long Tail Keywords There are basic keywords that naturally fit into your market. Unfortunately, it is difficult to contest with the big names on these search terms. Instead, focus on creating long tail keywords that people are likely to search for. A swimming pool store, for instance, could go for the keyword ‘above ground swimming pool installed’ instead of ‘swimming pool store.’ Big brands reduce time on long tail keywords, so you have a better chance of cornering the market. Concentrate Locally Around Fifty percent of people engaged in local searches will visit a company within a day. This statistic alone is enough to prove you should put time into local SEO. By doing this, though, you will also better compete with big brands. Wal-Mart, Target, McDonald’s and other large corporations do not typically invest much in local SEO. After all, they’d have to spend money and create large amounts of content for every locale they have a presence in. Add your city and surrounding city names to your long tail keywords for nice results. Never Skimp on the Content massive corporations have domain authority, great backlinks and large resource pools. What they sometimes fail to focus on, though, is content marketing. They often simply don’t have time to create blogs, infographics or other content that focuses on specific niches. This means that, if you put out wonderful content persistently, people will see you as a trusted industry source. This will lead to more backlinks, more social engagement and a variety of other effective factors that will help your organization compete. Search engine optimization is the best thing you can do for your website. And as it turns out, you really can take on significant corporations in the SEO field. With the right techniques, you could even...

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Why Google+ is Still Effective for Marketing

Posted by on 9:47 am in Blog | 0 comments

Why Google is Still Beneficial for Marketing and advertising Amazing User Base Everybody Has One Okay, not everyone has a Google account, but a crazy number of people do. In fact, there are 2.2 billion Google accounts out there. Facebook, however, has around 1.79 billion active users on a monthly basis. Unfortunately, one study showed that the bulk of Google accounts are rarely active. When the number of accounts is considered along with the other benefits of Google , though, the disadvantages don’t seem as terrible. Instantly Get Indexed Whenever you post content or update pages on your site, it takes a while before Google indexes the latest content. When you post something on Google , however, the search engine that just about everyone uses immediately indexes the new information. With your new content promptly indexed, you can see quick results in the search engine optimization (SEO) arena. Posting your blogs on the site can help you rank higher for keywords and even get you temporarily placed at the top of Google rankings. Even users that don’t actively post or view content on Google may end up seeing your site thanks to SEO. An Involved Demographic Exists Although estimates vary, some believe the volume of active monthly Google users sits around 375 million. Thankfully, these users are all highly engaged. This can really be worthwhile if these people fall into your target demographic. Over 70 percent of users, for instance, are male. The main professions on the site? Engineers, developers, instructors and designers. If your target audience is in these demographics, you may want to rethink Google for advertising and marketing. Keep in mind that you probably should not sacrifice other marketing platforms to use Google . Just take a moment to try out the site again. You will see if it is working in almost no time, and you can use that information to adjust your strategy if...

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What Back to the Future Taught Us About Marketing

Posted by on 9:29 am in Blog | 0 comments

3 Things Back to the Future Taught Us About Marketing Marty knew how vital it was to repurpose old popular content. If you are marketing and advertising an online business, you should too. Find your older well-performing content. After finding it, make updates, expand the content or take the time to repurpose it into new models like infographics. This could especially pay off considering 63 percent of enterprises using infographics say they’re effective. Consistency Is Crucial In the film, Marty had no choice but to get his parents together. Even when difficulties arose, he remained persistent in achieving his goal until it paid off. You must do this with marketing and advertising as well. It isn’t enough to post a blog or update social media once a week. You must consistently market to your target audience, or they’re going to stop listening. Oldies Are Still Goodies One of the most well-known scenes in the movie is when Marty performed ‘Johnny B. Goode’ to the crowd at the Enchantment Under the Sea dance. To the students, it was a brand new song, but to Marty, it was nearly 30 years old. Marty appreciated the value in repurposing old content. As a marketer or business owner, you should too. Find some of your old content that performed well. Once you obtain it, do an instant update, expand upon the content or change it into a different format such as an infographic. Since 63 percent of companies report that infographics are effective, this is a particularly great idea. Pay Attention to What The Heck Is Working Young Marty realized that the sweet approach from his father was not working. His mom appeared to be more attracted to dominant males, so he used this knowledge to make his dad more inviting. You must also keep track of the strategies that are working for your business. If they paid off once, build upon that good results and focus on mimicking your first taste of marketing success. It is not always a good idea to take marketing tips from a movie, but ‘Back to the Future’ certainly bucks this trend. Totally focus on the aforementioned lessons, and your marketing strategy will be going 88 miles per hour in no...

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Creating Exciting Content in Less than Exciting Industries

Posted by on 3:22 pm in Blog | 0 comments

Constructing Exciting Content in Less than Exciting Industries Content marketing has speedily become a critical device in promoting any organization. This is without a doubt why 88 percent of B2B and 76 percent of B2C companies utilize the tactic. For the strategy to be efficient, though, content must be engaging and appealing. This can in some cases prove difficult in sectors that seem boring. Fortunately, there are a few ways around this. Add a Sense of Humor If a blog or article will prove helpful to consumers, many will overlook its boring nature. This does not mean all of them will, though. Because of this, content creators should interject humor whenever they get the chance. While it may seem not professional, marketers need to weigh the advantages and disadvantages. Sure it might not sound like industry speak, but do most customers want to read that anyhow? Compose Local Content While it might appear ideal to create content that people in every state will enjoy, this isn’t exactly necessary for most local companies. With this in mind, take time to create content that targets events, people or anything else going on in the local community. Consider individuals who never watch the evening news. If they suddenly know that they or a friend will be on it that evening, there is very little doubt that they will be tuning in. This is the same with content marketing. Even in a monotonous industry, people are likely to be interested if content somehow relates to where they call home. Split the Content Even if you focus on writing locally and let your sense of humor show, some industries are just so technical that content must stay specific. If this is the case, take measures to break down the content on a page. Apply bullet points, headers, small paragraphs and images. Each of these things makes content more digestible, and consumers will be less inclined to feel overwhelmed or bored. Whether you are in shipping, development or any other industry that might come off as uninteresting, you do not have to create boring content. By following these rules and striving to build useful content, consumers will still find good reasons to visit your...

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