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Terri Seymour - Making Marketing Work bloggerOwning an online business entails more than just putting up a pretty website. Besides social media, marketing and promoting, you need to learn the inner structure of your website and how well it is accomplishing its purpose. This means you need to know the details of what people do when they visit your site, how long they stay and which pages interest them the most. 10 Reasons You Should Be Using Google Analytics by Terri Seymour

The more you know about what people do when they visit your site, the more you can specify and analyze the details of your site and optimize its performance. Google Analytics provides the means to attaining this very important goal.

Listed below are some of the features provided by Google Analytics and the reasons you should be utilizing them.

1. It’s Free – We have all heard the saying, “You don’t get anything for nothing”. In this case, that is not true. Google Analytics provides you with critical information, numbers and stats needed for you to maximize your website’s performance.

2. Customizable – With GA you can customize the information for your reports. Using an easy drag n drop, you can set up the reports how you want to receive them for easier analyzing. Read More→

lightbulbHashtags are simply words or phrases with a hash tag or pound sign (#) in front of them to highlight or emphasize the specifics of the message. For example: If you are posting a message about a product you offer, you might do something like #newproduct #diamondbracelet or #affordable.

The hashtag promptly increases the chances of your post being found when someone uses those terms in a search. They can be a bit annoying but are important if you want your posts to be found.

As with any tool or technique, it must be used properly to work effectively. Below are some ways to effectively and not so effectively use hashtags.

1. Do Not Use Spaces – The words or phrase you want included in the hashtag cannot have any spaces. You do not want your hashtag to look like this: #vegetable gardening.  You need to keep the space out. #vegetablegardening As with a url if you want to separate the words, use upper case letters. #VegetableGardening

2. Do not Use Punctuation Marks of Any Kind – Adding punctuation marks or special characters will render your hashtag ineffective. You also do not want to use all capital letters. You can use numbers as they will be effective within your hashtag.

3. Do Not Overstuff – I have seen messages or posts that were nothing but a jumble of hashtags. This is a definite no-no. Try not to use more than two or three hashtags per message. Using too many might give people the impression that you are a spammer. Use them as a tool, not as your entire message.

4. Do Not Make Them Too Long – For example: #bigsaleonallfurnituresavemoneywitheverypurchase. As you can see this is just a big confusing mess. Try not to use more than two or three words for your hashtag.  #FurnitureSale You want your hashtag to be easy to understand. Read More→

Terri Seymour - Making Marketing Work bloggerThe basically simple act of posting on your blog or other blogs can do powerful things for your business. But your action might not be so effective if you don’t utilize certain ideas. There are many things to consider when writing content but the tips below will give you a good start to getting the maximum response from your post.

Chalkboard1. Visual Content – Statistics say that if your post contains visual content, it will grab 94% more visits and engagement than those without. That is reason enough to start including videos and other visual content in your posts. The brain is automatically drawn more to images than to text.

2. Short Paragraphs – The amount of videos and other visuals used in marketing today is one of the reasons you need to keep your paragraphs short. You need plenty of white space to avoid long drawn out paragraphs. Large blocks of text will not draw much attention to your post.

3. Keywords – One of the most responsive ways to use keywords is adding them to your post title. Do not go crazy with the keywords. Use just a couple of keyword phrases throughout your post without sacrificing readability. Use the phrases in the very beginning, a couple of times throughout and then again at the end. Be sure to read up on keyword stuffing to prevent being penalized.

4. Subscription Forms Available – Having a subscription form available after every post will increase the chances of a person taking that action and subscribing to your list. Once you capture that person’s email, the chances of retaining them as a customer is greatly increased. Read More→

2dRRjXVDigital marketing is the method of marketing in which we use various electronic devices such as computers, smartphones, tablets, etc. It also entails the usage of software programs, apps and technological platforms such as email, websites, social media, etc. The world of digital marketing is a vast one in which we can easily get lost.

Because of all the advances and changes in technology, it can be hard to keep up on all the latest trends and methods encompassed by digital marketing. Digital marketing strategies include visual marketing, mobile marketing, and online marketing techniques of various kinds so it can all get very confusing and overwhelming.

We not only need to know what to do in the digital marketing world, we have to know what not to do. Below is a list of ten of the don’ts to hopefully help you trek through the massive digital marketing universe.

1. Closing Your Eyes on Mobile Marketing – The number of people who spend more time on the web with mobile devices is growing at a astounding rate. If you own an online business, you can no longer resist mobile devices as part of your digital marketing arsenal. The first step would be to make your website mobile device friendly. Many site builder programs such as WordPress have plugins and automatic features to do that for you. You can also add a line of code to your site that will format your site to the device being used. Be sure to try your website on your mobile devices to find out exactly how people are seeing it. Go through the mobile shopping experience yourself so you have a full understanding of what you need to do.

2. Too Much Social Media – Social media is so much a part of the internet these days it is impossible to expect to build a presence on all of the social sites. You need to pick 2 or 3 of the top sites and start building your brand and setting up your social presence. The most used social sites as of now are Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest. I get most of my social traffic from Facebook and Pinterest. Next in line is Google+, Tumblr and Instagram. If you can understand your target market you can become a part of the social sites in which they would most likely participate.

3. Information Overload – The digital marketing world is so vast we can easily become lost in the information. I, as well as many others, get caught in the trap of spending too much time gathering information from countless sources on various aspects of building an online business. We need to narrow our focus and learn only what we need to learn to successfully build our business. Find a few good sources for this information and stick with them to learn the ins and outs. Read More→

salePeople love to get free information so using a free tutorial to share your knowledge is a great way to promote yourself and your business. By doing this, you will be establishing yourself as an expert and building your reputation. Then when people need products and/or services, you will be the one they trust and believe.

Divide your tutorial into lessons, one for each day of the tutorial or ecourse. Once you get your lessons written up you want to set them up individually on an autoresponder.

There are many autoresponders available for free and for a fee. Some hosts may have autoresponders available as well. WordPress also has autoresponder plugins. Let’s say you own a home décor and furniture website store. You could set up an ecourse on how to successfully paint a piece of furniture. Your lessons would be something like this:

Lesson 1: Choosing the Right Paint

Lesson 2: Preparing the Piece to Be Painted

Lesson 3: Painting the Piece

Lesson 4: Maintaining the Finished Look

After your lessons are completed, you can set them up to go out each day in a row or separate them by a day or two. It would depend on how many lessons you have and how long you want the tutorial to last.

Separating the information into lessons works better than sending all the info in one mailing because it keeps your name and business fresh in the mind of the potential customer.

When writing your lessons, sprinkle in information about your business and what you offer but try to make it fit into the tutorial so it doesn’t appear too. Offer special discounts for signing up for your ecourse/tutorial. Read More→

successClick-Through Rate (CTR) is a way of measuring the success of an ad by how many people click on the featured link contained within the ad. A good click through rate is said to be about 2%, which can be greatly improved.

Buying advertising slots and spreading your ad all over the net won’t do much good if the ad does not get attention. Your ad must motivate people into following the call to action contained within the ad.

Advertising is an art and we need to learn that art to write effective, profit-pulling ads. If you know some of the proven tips on how to write effective ads, it can make all the difference for your business and advertising budget.

The Importance of the Headline: The success of an advertisement lies largely in the headline. The headline needs to capture the reader’s eye and make him want to read the rest of the ad. Research shows that five times more people read just the ad headline as opposed to the entire ad so you need to make it a good one.

Also, be sure to make your headline or some part of the ad bigger and darker than the rest. Put this tip to the test. Open a newspaper and see which ads draw your attention.

Your eyes will go to the ads with the biggest darkest headlines.

The headline should be centered around the product and what it can do for the customer. Do not fill your headline with exaggerated hype. Make it catchy but do not try to mislead or trick the customer into buying. If your ad is not believable, it will be passed over.

For example: If you are selling a pain relieving product, instead of this headline:
Painkill Takes Care of Pain

try this headline: Read More→

Feb
03

6 Online Marketing Musts for 2015

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iStock_000002807197XSmallOnline marketing changes from year to year and 2015 is no exception. Sometimes keeping up with all the changes and advancements can be a daunting task. New innovative ideas come alive and old ideas get more attention and power while some just dry up and blow away.

We can surmise that marketing methods such as social media and SEM will never go away but changes will take them in different directions. We need to be aware of those new directions so we don’t get lost in our marketing efforts.

Below are some of the major marketing trends for 2015 and how some of them will be changing.

1. Search Engine Marketing (SEM) – Search engine marketing includes strategies such as search engine optimization and paid search engine advertising. According to the Search Engine Journal, 93% of all online experiences begin with a search engine.

Obviously your website needs to be in on that statistic. Search engines drive over 300% more traffic to websites than social media. This year the search engines will be all about quality over quantity more than ever. Your site needs to have quality content and quality inbound links. Concentrate on content that answers people’s questions and links from high-powered informative sites. Keywords will be diminishing in importance as over-stuffing of keywords tends to cause webmasters to lose focus on more important factors such as user experience.

2. Mobile Marketing – Mobile marketing has been like a lion waiting in the bushes. When it pounces, its force will be extreme. This year promises to be a big year for mobile marketing. You have to have a mobile-friendly website as more and more people are going mobile. Almost 80% of smartphone owners use their devices to shop online.

And this stat will only get bigger. First thing you need to do is visit your site from a mobile device and take note of everything that needs to be changed, tweaked or redesigned. There are mobile site design services which are free or affordable. If you can’t or won’t make the necessary changes to your site an alternative is to make a mobile-friendly sister site and link it to your main site. This is a better strategy than just ignoring the ever-growing number of mobile consumers.

3. Content Marketing – 2014 was the year that content became king but this year it looks to evolve even further. Content marketing is marketing by creating and sharing information and other quality content. For effective content marketing you need to analyze your audience’s needs and articulate those needs successfully in your content.

Visual content such as infographics are becoming very popular and can do a lot for your campaign. Add graphics to your how-to articles for more effect. Creating entertaining and informative videos can also escalate your content marketing. Visual content will go to the next level and become a necessity in content marketing. Read More→

Twitter BirdTwitter is a micro-blogging site that has grown into one of the most popular social media sites available. To communicate with your followers you send short messages called tweets. These tweets can be used to build your business by building relationships.

With close to a billion active users, Twitter is a powerful force in the online marketing world. But, as with any marketing tool or method you do need to use it properly. Below are twelve things you can do to increase your following and beef-up your business.

1. Interesting and Complete Profile – Unfortunately you are only allowed 140 characters to sum up who you are in your profile so it has to be better than good. If you are tweeting for your business be sure to use your real name. Do not use cutesy or clever pun names. You need to be straightforward and let people know who you are. Use a “casual professional” photo of yourself. You don’t need to look like a stuffed shirt but you don’t want to look like you’re ready for a night on the town either. List your professional skills and/or accomplishments in your bio and ad your link.

2. Timing – There are good times to tweet and bad so do some testing and find the best times to tweet. Finding the best tweet times is not easy but there are tools to help you. Tweriod analyzes your tweets and your followers’ tweets to give you the best times. TweetWhen will let you know the days and times when you get the most retweets.

3. Repeats are Good – A lot of people would say to always post new and interesting information but if you repeat your popular posts periodically, it will help you get more followers. Just search for your name and see which posts got the most replies and retweets. Repost those tweets a few times but not too close together.

4. Follow Autofollow – Some Twitter experts encourage the use of Autofollow. This is an automated service that allows Twitter users to automatically follow people who have followed them. Look for people who follow a lot of people but have the same amount of followers. This could be an indication of Autofollow. If you follow that person, they will automatically follow you back. But be wary of spam followers. They will be following thousands of people but will not have the same amount of followers like a person using Autofollow. Read More→

tackleAlthough Facebook started out as a place for people to meet and share personal thoughts and opinions, it has gained major status as a way to promote your business. With a billion monthly users, Facebook is the most popular social media site. When used properly for your business, the effect could be quite substantial.

The idea is to get as many people to “Like” your posts and follow your pages as possible. But in doing so, remember the old adage – Quality, Not Quantity! You want your numbers to consist of targeted and responsive followers.

Below are ten mistakes many people make when engaging in Facebook’s vast social network. Some people may not even realize they are floundering so go over each fumble carefully to ensure that you are not part of the losing team.

1. Incomplete profile and Business Information – Not filling in all your information suggests that you have something to hide. Be sure to fill out every aspect of the information forms. Be forthcoming and give out all pertinent information.

2. Wrong Profile Pic – When you are trying to build a business on Facebook you don’t want to use inappropriate pictures for your profile. Don’t use a picture of your pet cat or your family get-togethers. Use a photo of yourself looking straight ahead. Do not wear sunglasses or avert your eyes in any way. Do not overdo on make-up or look like you are going to a party. Always smile and just be yourself. A picture can be worth a thousand words.

3. Too Much Posting – You probably have read that you should post regularly to your page, but by the same token, posting too much can have as many adverse results as not posting enough.

4. Lengthy Posts – Bite-sized posts are much more likely to get read and responded to than long, flowing text. Facebook research shows that if your post has over 100 but fewer than  250 characters, it will have a 60% better chance of getting a response. So try to keep your posts between 100-250 characters for optimum response.

5. Mobile Unfriendly – Mobile marketing is making a big splash in the internet world and you need to be prepared. You need to be aware of the size of your posts and images in that they will fit and be readable on mobile devices. Keep your photos about 600 pixels wide by 400 pixels high and your text should be no more than 100 characters long. Read More→

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