Category Archives for "Local Marketing Tips"
The quote is awesome. Too bad the author is "Unknown." What would it be like to leave this world with something great that you created and then have it attributed to "Unknown?"
On the web, to be known is everything. Known in search, known on social, and for having a business that helps people solve a problem or be successful. But we're not just here to build businesses and make money to pay for stuff and bills.
We're here to leave a mark. To prosper in life as well as business and have it known that we created something that served people well in our lifetimes.
Don't be "Unknown." Get some help with your marketing, get more traffic, and get known! Talk to us, we can help you!
And check out Prosperity Quotes for daily inspiration for yourself and your business.
In a new article by Fast Company, "Your Facebook Fans Are Hiding Your Posts At An Alarming Rate," Ekaterina Walter takes a look at some stats most businesses don't pay attention to.
Most of the businesses on Facebook focus, at least initially, on the number of likes they get for their business fan pages.
The reasoning is simple: more fans equals more exposure to new, past, and potential customers. The problem becomes clear soon enough. Engagement often doesn't take off as planned. With 100 or so new fans should come a higher level of engagement, right? Your business should see an increase in the activity from your fans as your likes increase, right?
Not so. At least, not automatically. It all depends on how you engage your audience on Facebook and how you keep them from hiding your posts.
You're now in the realm of tracking response rates to your Facebook posts and figuring out a plan to keep fans engaged and passing around your updates to their friends.
When your Facebook marketing campaign becomes more about engagement than building a huge list of fans who may or may not be seeing all of your updates, you have to start thinking about a content plan for Facebook that keeps your fans glued to your updates and engaged with your business.
Read the article on Fast Company to see what you can do to improve your visibility with the fans you have while you're working to get more fans to follow you.
There are several lead generation tactics that will, ultimately, lead to the overall success of your online business endeavors. Examples of these tactics include – but, are not at all limited to – sponsoring free giveaways, creating newsletters, offering discounts and coupons. Additionally, the mechanics behind these tactics are especially important. That is, the lead page, the thank you page, any and all follow-up email messages, and precise calls to action. Lead generation, by all accounts, is the marketing-based process that involves stimulating and, ultimately, capturing the interest associated with a particular product and/or service for the purpose and intent of creating a successful sales pipeline for your business.
The Importance of Lead Generation
In a world where markets are consistently changing and evolving as a result of the rapid innovations and changes occurring on the World Wide Web, the consumer buying process has transformed. As a result, businesses must discover new, innovative methods for reaching consumers. There is a lot of virtual “noise” on the internet, and businesses must be “heard” by consumers in order to achieve the success that they desire. Instead of actively searching out customers with age-old, traditional tactics such as mass advertising and blasting emails, you must place an emphasis on being FOUND. Once you are discovered by customers, you must focus on lead generation tactics that will allow you to develop long-term relationships with your customers, which are built on the trustworthiness and expertise of your business.
Attention Economics and Lead Generation Tactics
If you have an interest in lead generation tactics, it is important to understand the basics of attention economics. As the internet continues to grow, the world has transitioned from information limitations to one that has an abundance of information. As a result of the increase of information that is ever-expanding, there is a high level of attention scarcity. Many marketers refer to this as “Attention Economics”. In order to succeed at winning over customers, you must understand that, based on the most fundamental aspects of attention economics that consumers are currently overwhelmed with all of the information being thrown at them online. They are learning to block a lot of that which is being thrown at them. Now, consumers are out there, searching for information that they want. In order to reap the rewards of success on the internet, one of the best lead generation tactics is to create that information and have it readily available to those consumers when they go searching for it on the internet.
Giving is the New Receiving for Online Businesses
In order to build a successful lead generation funnel for your online business, you must understand that giving is the new receiving. That is, you must give consumers what they want – discounts, savings, information, and even freebies – in order to attract their interest and their loyalty. When customers are entering in searches for the keywords and keyword phrases that pertain to your industry, you and your business should be standing to deliver what they want, and FAST! In doing so, you will find that are exceptionally successful. Ensure that all of your lead generation tactics center on this core concept of giving and you are sure to receive the rewards that you desire from your online business endeavors.
In case you missed yesterday's webisode, you can listen to the replayHERE. Jeremy builds a sales funnel live in less than an hour for Jake Garber with Lifeline Pet Supplies. While divulging the tips and tricks, Jeremy is putting them into practice, giving a visual to the different levels in the funnel and how they work.
In this webisode, Jeremy shows you how to build an effective and profitable sales funnel in just 45 minutes.
Download the VISUALS HERE
What are you marketing? (Product/Service)
Who are you marketing to?
Where do you find your potential customers?
How do you GRAB their attention?
Give to Get with FREE Valuable Content?
What Capture Mechanism?
Leave Page Offers
In this webisode, Jeremy will show you how to build an effective and profitable sales funnel in just 45 minutes.
I don't know why we web marketers treat local businesses like something "other." It's been a thing since the web started, really. There are online businesses, (when they are new they even get their own name, called "startups"). And then there are businesses that exist in some other-worldly place that are free to come online and build a site, and stuff, but we're not having them over to our hip warehouse headquarters (with a slide and free lattes) for game night.
The truth is, business is business and we're all offline. We're all location-based. We are all geographically grounded in the real-world. The internet is the new kid on the block, if anything is.
The internet is a glowing phone book - an interactive directory. A place to hang out and play telephone in a far cooler way than our parents and grandparents did. A shopping mall made entirely of light.
Your business uses it to reach out to grab new customers, leads, clients, fans. Just like any business, yours seeks to grow by reaching more of your ideal audience.
When I started marketing online in 1998, Google looked like this:
A face only a founder and a bunch of old farts of marketing could love.
While a lot has changed, nothing really has. At the same time that we're introducing technology to the world that Marty McFly introduced to the silver screen when we were kids, human nature remains staunchly in place.
To sell stuff to people today we have to do more of what really successful businesses have done since selling stuff was invented. We have to make connections. Historically, connections could get away with being shallow. Today, the pendulum has swung in the direction of deeper connections by being "real." Thus we have social media along with a strong rejection of any commercialization of our "personal streams."
Can't market like the old days with a megaphone and a soap box. Now you have to give to the world in order to receive anything at all back - or you're out of business.
It's really quite a great thing for all involved. People are forcing businesses to actually add value to the world. And in exchange, people listen to those businesses and buy their stuff.
I think (hope) we're getting tired of creating mountains of trash and plastic and things with no meaning. We're getting tired of disposable. A bigger piece of humanity craves meaning. A sense of place. Pride. Quality. Relevance. I also think businesses have gotten pretty tired of the meaninglessness of "business as usual" as we all seek a new way to look at our relationship to the stuff that we do for a living.
Why else would all the new startups be focused so heavily on quality of work environment? I mean, to absurd levels, including free food and massages, and all kinds of perks our grandfathers roll their eyes at when they read the paper (on their iPads we got them for Christmas, of course).
The note here is: Do everything you can to be relevant and meaningful with your business, and the people who represent your business, on the web. Relevance, authority, and influence are rewarded on the web with search rankings, tons of traffic from social, and a large increase in following and customers. And every single bit of it comes from what you do with your site content, your social engagement, and the stories you create and tell. Authority and influence in your market cannot be bought anymore.
That's why we started C.A.S.T. (Customer Attraction Systems Training). It's time local business owners and staff became more involved in their online success. For there is no other way to succeed online today.
Ok - the extremely helpful infographic below was created with the title "120 Marketing Tactics for New Blogs." As I checked out the tips, though, I realized that a lot of our advice to clients is in this graphic.
Any local business owner happening by these tips might be thrown off by "Tactics for New Blogs" and not read it. Not only are many of these tips good for new sites of any kind, they are good for old sites. And they are good tactics for local business owners looking to make the web a good customer and lead generation producer for them.
If you are a local business owner or staff member in charge of getting more customers from the web to view your site, tap to call you, or otherwise engage with your web presence, you should get an awful lot out of this one!
If you need any help with anything below, be sure to let us know. We can help you!
Infographic by Digital Philippines
At Brick Road Media 35% of our business comes from Website Design/Re-Design. When we first start discussing a website project the end goal is the top priority . If driving traffic and leads is the number one priority then functionality is the first design element that we will work on . Too many times designers go for high -end graphics and photography but forget the marketing elements that will make the page produce results . I mention this because over 90% of the clients that we consult with have marketing and page conversion at the bottom of their list of priorities . Here are the top 5 design blunders for you as a budding designer or D.I.Y to avoid. 1. Font is too small- 14pt Font is the new 12pt Font . I often see websites that use font that I have to use the control + key for, and a lot of times they are using this small font in key areas such as contact us page and in areas where the call to action is located . If I can't read it, then how would you expect the older generation who haven't upgraded to a 32 inch LCD panel screen to read your important parts? Go BIG or Go HOME! 2. Home Page is Jammed- You know these pages on talking about. The website that looks like they took the company flyer , brochure , sales presentation folder , and every other piece of literature that is ever been printed for the company and threw it in three unorganized columns with two irrelevant stock images and called this their home page . Please Please Please avoid this style at all costs . We use WordPress for all of our websites and there are several great theme companies such as Woo Themes, and Elegant Themes that will help with the layout of a good home page . To start you want to make sure that there's plenty of white space , and I recommend that you choose the three most important elements of your business or organization that you want highlighted and start with either a slider or three shadow boxes that link to the information pages about those items . Do not put the information about these items on the homepage ! Use images or icons in a short catchy phrase that will induce the user to click to learn more information . This will keep your home page clutter free , easy to navigate , and most importantly it will keep your user engaged with your website until they find what they're looking for . 3. Forms- This blunder can easily be fixed . Keep your forms to 4 Input boxes or less . There is a time down the road to get your users date of birth , social security numbers , firstborns shoe size, and Rusty the family Dog's DNA profile, but it is not in the first interaction with the user . It is better to start with name, and email and go from there. Statistics will show that your click through rates on forms increases when your fields of input decrease. 4. Contact Page- This may be more of a personal pet peeve , but it drives me crazy when I landed on a site and find the information exciting enough to want to know more and talk to someone and the only option is to fill out a basic contact form where you know the message is landing somewhere in cyberspace . What tends to happen with me, is I get the reply 2-3 days later and by then I forget what I was interested in or have already went to a competitor and purchased. That is what happens to companies that don't think of being super accessible on the web. The Best way of handling in my opinion is to give as many options to the user to contact you as possible , if such as live chat , e-mail address , phone number , hours of operation , and an expected time frame that their query will be returned . 5. Creativity before Functionality- As discussed above in the introduction you want to decide early in the project what's the main focus is going to be . If the main focus is to drive traffic and leads which is typical for most businesses, then you need to focus on the marketing functionality in the overall user experience. There will be a time and a place to input those sexy icons and that awesome photograph that you are just dying to put in the website somewhere, but trust me on this one, designing a funnel that will drive and capture leads is much more rewarding than having a cool site.
By Mike Liebensohn
Most small businesses have some form of web presence these days - a website, Facebook page, maybe some YouTube videos - but not very many are taking advantage of the true (and often free) power of the internet to market their business.
Here is my Top 10 list of common mistakes - things that businesses are NOT doing. They're leaving lots of money on the table and probably throwing away lots of money in other places...
1. Not Having a Free Offer. Do you know how many people visit your website each month? How many of them call or email you? How many buy? What happens to all those other people? How about those people you meet at events - the ones you don't have time (or desire) to follow-up with? What if you had a way to automatically engage and keep in touch with these people? Start by creating something of value - a coupon, video series, e-book - that you can give away (electronically) in exchange for an email address. Put a sign-up box on your website and shift your focus from selling your product to "selling" your free giveaway. Now, "touch" these people on a regular basis...
2. Not Sending Regular Emails to Everyone in Your Database. (Or doing it the WRONG way) It's so much easier to sell to existing customers. This is the low hanging fruit - marketing to your existing database helps with referrals and repeat business by keeping you "top of mind". It's also a good way to sell other products that you or an affiliate company may offer. The key here is to have good, helpful, interesting content, and send it out with the right frequency.
3. Making it Hard for People to Contact You. Why would you go out of your way to hide your phone number and address on your website? I can't tell you how many websites I've visited where this information was either hard to find or was only in a picture (where Google can't find it). Your phone number should be large at the top right of the page and your address should be at the bottom of every page, along with a general email address.
4. Not Knowing Your Main Keywords. Just about anything you do online gets indexed by Google. The way to get found online is by understanding and using the proper keywords in your website pages, LinkedIn profiles, Facebook pages, etc. Many people focus on optimizing their site for keywords without truly knowing what keywords to optimize for. How can you bait a hook if you don't know what the fish will bite at? Ask your customers, friends, and try googling different words yourself and see if your competition shows up. Set up Google analytics (free) on your site and get REAL scientific data on what words people are using.
5. Not Being Everywhere Online. Online is not just about having a website. Google looks at other sites that link back to your main site - local directories, Yelp, Manta, Facebook, YouTube, article sites, blogs, etc. The more places you can put your keywords, website address, phone number, and address, the better. You'll cast a much wider net, having more places to show up in a Google search, while also making your main website more relevant (because other sites are linking to it).
6. Not Having 5 Reviews on Google Places (Google + Local) This means reviews your customers leave themselves, not the ones they give you in a letter that you then put up on your website. This is really important - I have a client who finally got his 5th review and his Google Places rank jumped to #1 almost immediately!!! There's something magical about having at least 5. So how do you do it? Send something to all of your customers stating that the first 5 that go on your Google Places page and leave a positive review will get a $50 gift card. Or, have each customer do it on YOUR laptop right after purchasing or signing the contract. The best thing about the act of soliciting testimonials: your customers are further solidifying in their mind the reasons why they bought from you and are then much more likely to buy again and/or recommend it to their friends!
7. No Videos or Videos Not Properly Optimized. Having videos on your website makes it 50x more likely to rank on the first page of Google than not having videos! And, having videos on YouTube is even more important, since Google owns YouTube, and many people (300 million a month) go there first to find information. Customer testimonials are best - or you can answer FAQ's about your business. If you're camera shy, make a PowerPoint and talk over it. The most important things to do (that most people don't do) when uploading a video on YouTube: use your main keywords in the title, put a link to your website in the description (start with http://), include a specific call to action, set the location (where the video was made) -- AND keep the video length to 2 minutes or less!
8. Thinking People Care About You and Your Company. Ever heard the radio station WIFM? Also known as "what's in it for me" - and that's the mentality of the typical person hunting for something online. They don't care about your bio or what your building looks like. They want what they want when they want it. Not because they are bad people; they are just overwhelmed. I suggest giving clear free information about what you do and about your industry, product, or service. Give away some of your secrets. This is reality: they'll find it somewhere else online eventually, why not take the opportunity to position yourself as the local expert, and count on them reciprocating some day in the future (or telling their friends how helpful you were).
9. Not Updating Your Website on a Regular Basis. Just to clarify - regular does not mean once every 5 years! Content on the web is like produce at the grocery store. Everything has a sell by date on it. Your information will constantly be piled "on top of" by others who are creating newer information. The easiest way to stay current is with a blog hosted on your main website. A What's New section on your home page is great, and a very good place for specials or coupon (that change on a regular basis!). Updates can be made "off-site" also. A great strategy is to upload new videos to YouTube or publish articles that link to your website. Try to do this once a week or once a month at the very least. Consistency counts!
10. Not Tracking EVERYTHING. The secret to writing good copy and ads, and creating offers, etc is not creativity, it's testing. No matter how smart we think we are, we'll never know if something will really work until we try it and measure it. Some of the ugliest ads and web pages make the most money. Therefore, try something, measure it, then tweak it until you get something that really works! Sometimes changing one word is enough to make a huge difference in response rate!! Use Google analytics to track website traffic and use unique phone numbers (Google voice is free) and offer codes to track all other offline ad campaigns.
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In the mood to learn about one of the first things we do for new local SEO clients? Google Places is the most important place for any business to get listed properly.
The following training is from Google staffers themselves and outlines everything you need to know about getting set up and running on Google Places. (You'll see why a lot of businesses choose to hire pros like us to do this and other search engine optimization work for them.)
(Note that you need to click on the bottom of the video above and choose the 4th video in the playlist for the Google Places training. All of the videos in the list are great, but the one mentioned here is #4 in the list.)