Twenty years ago, if you opened a local business it was near impossible to compete with the big players in your industry who were well established in your community, but things have changed. Google changed everything! If you want a cheese burger, new business sign, office furniture, lawn care specialist, etc.… all you need to do is ask Google. Search engines have leveled the playing field and a small company can now have a fighting chance against the big-boys. However, just because your small or medium sized business has a website, doesn’t mean that the fight stops there; adding new and original content is your main weapon. (more…)
Today’s consumers always have choices and usually a lot of them. It’s not difficult to do some last minute shopping while standing in any store just to get a price check. Pull out your phone, do a quick search, and instantly become educated about more options. It can feel hard to compete with that. However, a recent Google and Ipsos research study shows, “90% of smartphone users aren’t absolutely sure of the specific brand they want to buy when they begin shopping.” What should you do? (more…)
Gaining business reviews is incredibly helpful for gaining more business. Of course, you’ll want to get all the positive reviews that you can. Reviews on Google, Yelp, Facebook, Bing, etc., are helpful for when a potential customer is shopping around and stumbles upon your business online. A glowing amount of reviews will instill their trust in you before they even make an action, such as a phone call. The big question is… how do we get reviews?
One of the most important, and often neglected, content elements on a web page is the title tag. Title tags are used to define the page, and are often pulled by search engines for use as a description of the page for listings on the search engine results pages (SERPs). The title tag is meant to be a concise, keyword representation of the page content, and is important for both SEO and site usability.
Giving your title tags a quick review and update is a great way to give your website an easy SEO upgrade. Here are 5 things to look for when considering your title tags:
- Effective Title Elements
The format of an effective title tag will typically include a primary keyword, secondary keyword, and the company name. Depending upon the business, inclusion of the geographic location of the business may also be advantageous. The “pipe” symbol is often used to separate these elements in the title: (more…)
Online marketing is an ongoing challenge. One of the most effective things you can do to improve your website, social media, and email strategies is to create quality content. Fortunately you do not need to be a tech-savvy, search engine optimization expert to develop online content. As a professional in your industry, you are uniquely positioned to develop informative and useful content that will attract the people who will become your customers.
Here are five simple ideas you can develop to create effective content: (more…)
The beginning of a new year provides a great opportunity for content marketing as it is the time when people tend to look for inspiration and are ready for change. Your prospective customers are likely in the frame of mind to try new things and make improvements. Use the new year as a theme for January blog and email topics that promote your products and services in the form of inspiring ideas.
Whether it is individuals or businesses, here are a few action items that people tend to think about at the beginning of a new year. Consider who your customers are, and how your products and services might help them with these objectives: (more…)
Imagine you have a friend who has been trying to meet someone to date. Up until now, your friend has only used online dating websites, but you convince him to attend a party you’re having so he can meet women face-to-face. At the party, you introduce him to a group of people who are casually talking, hoping he will jump in and make a connection with someone. Instead he looks around at the group and announces, “I am a 35 year-old man seeking a long-term relationship with a woman who enjoys nature, fitness, and great books.” As you cringe, and every female awkwardly excuses herself from the group, your friend asks what he did wrong.
While there is something to be said for being direct in communication, it is also important that your messaging be appropriate, especially in social situations. The same is true for social media. The messaging you’ve been using for your current marketing, such as email blasts or advertisements, may not work for social platforms like Facebook and Twitter. Social media marketing is about having a conversation. The message needs to feel less like a sales pitch, and more like socializing. These platforms are meant to be interactive, so your posts should to draw readers into an interaction with you. You can use social media to get to know your prospects and allow them to get to know you. While it is good to have messages with deals and offers, some messages can just be about staying in touch. Use humor, pictures, and short video clips to make your posts attractive. (more…)
If you are like me, and have been doing marketing for more than 20 years, you have seen a lot of change in the field. Earlier in my career, I worked as an in-house marketing specialist for two different manufacturing companies that sold products through a network of distributors. As marketing vehicles evolved in response to emerging communication technology, I found that many of my more seasoned colleagues were reluctant to support changing existing advertising strategies. They often suggested that the new methods were just “not right for our business.”
By now, the most successful businesses with a goal of growing sales are embracing every new technology available to them. As it turns out, many of the tried and true marketing strategies of the pre-technology era are making the transition very well.
Here four familiar favorites that can be introduced to your online marketing tool box: (more…)
Rare is the business that enjoys the luxury of having no competition in their industry or market. In addition to selling your product or service, you need to offer some exclusive benefits or advantages buyers can enjoy by doing business with your company. Lower price, faster delivery, and better selection are all great selling advantages businesses can offer, but they are not necessarily unique.
The one thing every business offers that is positively unique is its team advantage. From the highest levels of management to the entry-level staff, your team represents your company, and is part of the package you are selling. No matter what the size, having a team of employees who are loyal, enthusiastic, and committed to the company’s success will greatly enhance the quality of your business, and subsequently increase sales. (more…)
Reviews have always been a part of businesses – whether online, word of mouth, in a magazine, whatever it may be, they affect the way in which consumers make decisions. Sites like Google, Yelp and other directories pride themselves on their reliable reviews that help users make the best purchasing assessment! Gaining reviews has now become a way of life. And above all else, it’s a good business management practice to stress. Just recently, however, reviews really seem to be in the forefront of conversation- specifically online reviews. Small business owners need to make sure they’re taking advantage of all the different review options, making efforts to earn quality reviews, and communicating with the team about updating and managing comments.
We’ve written a blog on how to get reviews for your business and we’ve also written a blog on how to face the negative ones…. But do you know how important these reviews really are to your business success? (more…)