15/05/19 SEO , Social Media

Top 5 Reasons You Need To Change Your Marketing Strategies Today

Running a successful business and keeping up with the ever-changing market can be tough. There will always be competition, no matter who your target audience is, and the key is to always stay relevant, keep up with the times, and tweak your strategies as you go. This includes changing market strategies frequently. In order to prosper as a business, you have to know when it’s time to try something different or something new. Here are key reasons to change your promotional procedures.

Reason #1: Times Change and Competitors Will Change With It

In order to stay ahead of the game and keep up with the times, you must stay up to date and work your business around what is new and what has changed with your target audience. The competition will be doing the same and this is why it is crucial to try to be the first one to equip your business with the recent changes. “First come, first serve”, applies to situations like this and it means whoever jumps on the next new thing first, will have a better chance of getting the business of new customers. Stale products or services won’t attract buyers, especially when there are so many others businesses who will be up to date.

Reason #2: Trends And Fads Come And Go

Trends are always coming in and going out like the seasons. Your product or services will have to be able to adapt to what is relevant now. Furthermore, customers like variety. You have to be able to accommodate what it is that everyone is looking for. One person may like one thing, while the next likes something else. You will reach a bigger audience if you are able to cater to what several individuals may be interested in, instead of focusing on one.

Reason #3: Laws, Rules, And Regulations Change

Depending on the product you sell, the packaging may no longer be up to code. This means you will need to re-strategize how you can go about changing your packaging to ensure it is compliant and implement it. In addition, an ingredient or material may have been recalled and you will have to figure out how to go about making your product without it.

Reason #4: What You’re Doing Isn’t Working

You may be trying to do too many things at once, that isn’t exactly working. You need to have a business plan laid out and a true goal in sight. If you aren’t seeing the growth that you should be, as a whole, it’s time to try something different. Sit down and evaluate things to see what can be done differently and what would need to be done, in order to achieve that goal.

Reason #5: Use Social Media And Local Avenues To Draw In More Business

In today’s times, almost everyone has some form of social media page or channel. Most businesses do as well. The key is to make sure that you are active on them and interact with your target audience. Keeping the page up to date is a must. Communicating when customers have questions or are just leaving reviews, is a way to gain their trust and show that you appreciate their business. When trying to reach a local audience, you can do advertising within your city or town. Signs, billboards, and newspapers are all great ways to get the word out to potential customers near you.

Everyone wants to have a successful business, especially after putting so much hard work and dedication into it. The goal is to continue to thrive and provide a product or service that is in demand, reaches a big audience, and connects with your target audience. Know who you are promoting yourself to and focus on providing the best service you can. However, sometimes additional help is needed. There are SEO professionals who can also take a look at your business/marketing strategies, show you what you can change to bring in more business, and help implement the changes.

Growing your customer base is one of the goals of owning a business. The more customers, the more sales, and that mean more profit. Changing your marketing strategies every 45 days is a way to promote this. Being fresh, changing with the times, and getting professional help when needed, can keep your business high up on search engines and enable you to have the success you deserve.

 

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12/12/17 Social Media

How to Use Social Proof to Increase Sales on Every Page of Your Website (Part 2)

So, continuing our discussion on social proof, you have many more ways than just the 2 discussed in the last post on this topic.

The more social proof you can get on your website, especially if you’re a small, local, or new business, the better. You really can’t overdo it.

All your social proof works together to create a convincing case you’re the best solution for solving your customer’s problem.

Here are some additional techniques you can use:

Show Off Your Notable Media Mentions

“Media” doesn’t have to be NBC, the Washington Post, or CNN (although it certainly can be).

It can be any recognized authority in your niche. For example, if you speak or present at your local Chamber of Commerce. Or if you get quoted in the Dallas Morning News.

You can easily integrate media mentions into your homepage like this:

social media mentions

The more you have, the better. You could make this a narrow band of 10-15 mentions if you want.

How to Get Media Mentions from Big-Name Authorities

Think sources like CNN and the Washington Post would never mention you?

Oh contraire!

You can absolutely get them to mention you.

Of course, this isn’t a guarantee.

However, the website Help a Reporter Out gives you just such an opportunity. When you sign up (for free by the way), you subscribe to a few different email lists of your choosing.

Then, you get various inquiries that ask for interviews, quotes, and opinions on questions. And yes, the biggest media sources in every niche frequently use HARO.

Trust Seals

These little graphics still matter. Except for the BBB, it’s rarely worth your time to join an organization just for the credibility boost on your website (unless you have other business reasons for doing so).

But, the more you have, the better.

In terms of effectiveness, these don’t rank as highly as other techniques discussed.

But, they’re quick and easy to add to your website. And they help.

Make sure you have trust seals from all professional organizations you belong to. Except for the BBB, they can be located pretty much anywhere on your homepage (usually half to all the way down).

If you accept payments on your website, display the logos of credit cards you use – right at the moment, your customer clicks the button to pay.

Include the logos of companies or media organizations where you’ve been quoted.

And if you have recognizable customers you’ve served, use their logos also (assuming you have their permission!).

Again, these can be placed little ways down your home page. You could also create an entirely separate page for this, but make sure you integrate the most notable ones into your homepage.

Reviews and Ratings

These generally apply to e-commerce sites that sell products. But some niches (law and HVAC for example), have many sources for customer reviews and ratings.

This could include Google reviews, Avvo (for lawyers), or Angie’s List and Houzz for various contractors.

If the review discusses one of several services you offer, make sure that review appears on the specific page you created to sell that service.

Don’t just dump your reviews all on a single page, like many SMBs do. Customers do not visit those pages frequently.

Shares and Views

These can be really tough to get at the SMB level. Building a dedicated online following takes tons of hard work.

Getting decent numbers of shares on your blog posts, or views can take well over a year (and even longer). Or, building your Facebook following can take a similar amount of effort.

But, you may have a significant number of blog post views or social media shares you’re proud of.

In that case, place links to follow you on Facebook (see our Facebook advertising services) that also shows your follower count. If you have a blog, you can install widgets that show the number of views your posts have.

Social Proof Makes You Convincing

Do you need every one of these elements?

No.

But, the more you have, the better. And the newer or less recognized your business, the more they help.

If you’re an established local SMB, you still need them. While some people know and trust you, many don’t.

You don’t have instant recognition unless you’re a local celebrity.

You don’t need to dedicate all your energy to this. But at least a portion of your marketing efforts should work on building social proof over time.

The more you have, the easier it is for customers to choose you.

 

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06/12/17 Social Media

How to Manage Your Social Media Profiles in Just Minutes Per Month

Does this sound familiar?

You post like a maniac on your company’s social media profiles for months at a time.

And?

Wait for it…

Still waiting…

…Nothing!

What’s more demoralizing than spending months on a project, with no results to show for it?

That’s the way social media works for many SMBs.

So, how do you spend as little time on social media as possible, while still generating valuable results, like orders and leads?
Here’s how in 2017:

Listen

Believe it or not, even though it’s called “social” media, the greatest value for small businesses rests not in posting but listening to what your customers and competitors say.

For example, what are the hot topics in your niche? You can use what you discover to learn new marketing angles.

What do other company’s customers complain about or praise their favorite companies for?

You know exactly what to do, and not do, as a result.

Keep your eyes and ears peeled for mentions of your own company. Search for hashtags using your company name on Twitter. Review your Google reviews and Facebook profile for comments.

How to Keep it Simple

Any aspect of internet marketing can quickly take over all your time. With social media, use Buffer, Hootsuite, or CoSchedule to share content and consolidate monitoring of your social channels.

Google Analytics helps you track performance. Feedly and e-mail subscriptions to your favorite content in your niche give you all you need to share.
Share 4-6 posts per week on Facebook. Share 3-4 per day on Twitter. Go with 1-2 per day for LinkedIn.

Engage

Engage in a few ways on your active social media channels. Like some content (but only if you find it genuinely interesting and useful for your own followers). Comment. Ask questions. And always respond to any inbound messages, public or private.

Consider randomly reaching out to a Facebook follower and rewarding them, and then acknowledging that publicly to generate interest.

Advertise

This one comes last.

Why?

Because you can only advertise once you have a rock-solid understanding of your customers and how social media works for your company.

You don’t have to advertise incessantly to get customers. You have to understand them and learn what they’re most likely to respond to.

Systemize

Every business is different. You have your own approach. Once you have down what you do, make it a checklist. Then, rinse and repeat on a daily basis.

Set yourself a time limit to encourage the smartest use of your time. Do not break that boundary under any circumstances.

When you find yourself getting more results than you can manage, then it’s time to consider hiring someone to manage your social media.

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How to Make Facebook Work for Your SMB in 2017
13/01/17 Social Media

How to Make Facebook Work for Your SMB in 2017

One of the funniest things about businesses is that they get upset and surprised when Facebook changes how it works so your posts show up to fewer people when you publish them. You call this “organic reach.” And the reason it’s silly to be surprised that Facebook does this is because it’s a publicly traded company. On its IPO, it traded at $38.23. Then, its price plummeted all the way to $18.06 shortly thereafter.

Continue reading

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Web Content Marketing Strategy on a Budget for SMBs
19/11/14 Social Media

Web Content Marketing Strategy on a Budget for SMBs

Let’s take a look at some awesomely successful content marketing campaigns from the past couple years:

  1. Red Bull sent a man into outer space.
  2. Coca-Cola had a social media team working 24 hours per day during the World Cup.
  3. American Express got Coldplay, The Killers, and many other pop stars to give them a hand.

Internet marketers talk about these content marketing campaigns all the time.

Inspiring, no doubt, but wait a minute! Here’s the problem: they have marketing budgets many times the size of your business!

So what can you actually apply from their campaigns?

You have to bootstrap everything in your business’s early days. And even if you’re not in the early years of your business, you still have to use every dollar wisely.

Here’s how you do that with content (without sacrificing quality)

1) Use at Least 2 Blog Posts Per Month

This is well within the time/financial budget of your SMB. It’s just frequent enough to keep Google spidering your website, and also to keep your customer’s interest.

If you want to be more regular and get a little more traction with Google and your customers, aim for 4.

To become the local thought leader, do 8 or more per month.

400-500 words per post is enough. Just make sure they’re interesting and helpful to your customers.

2) Add Social Media

You don’t need to be overly fancy with social media to get results from it. For most businesses, your time’s best spent on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest (for visual products).

Aim for 5-7 posts per week per profile. You can even post the exact same thing to each one.

Remember, 80% of your posts should be educational/helpful and NOT about your business. 20% should discuss your business or be special offers, deals, or sales.

If you go above that ratio, you look overly self-promotional, which loses you followers and sales.

Respond to every comment as quickly as possible. If someone complains, resolve the issue in private, and discuss the outcome in public so other visitors see you make service your priority

3) Steal from Your Competitors

Okay, so I exaggerated a little…you won’t actually be stealing!

But rather than spending hours, weeks, and months figuring out what works, research your competitors instead.

For example, find a business that does the exact same thing you do, but has a blog with social shares and active social media profiles. Go to the blog posts with the most social shares, and write the same idea yourself.

But of course take your own perspective on it! Otherwise, you are plagiarizing, and your visitors have no reason to go to your blog if you write the same thing everyone else does.

Examine their social media profiles. See which posts get the most likes, comments, and shares.

What seems to be their overall strategy?

One of the greatest benefits of the internet is that you can do free, in-depth marketing research that used to cost thousands and millions of dollars decades ago.

Can’t find a competitor with an active blog and social media profiles? Looks like it’s your turn to become the local market leader.

Content Marketing on a Budget? Pffff…No Problem!

Online marketing gives you a ridiculously high ROI compared to what you used years ago – The Yellow Pages, radio, television, billboards, your local phone book, and anything else you can name.

For small businesses, it really is a great way to compete with the big guys.

And if you’re a very small business with just an employee or two and maybe a contractor, this SEO strategy gets you through.

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