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Thursday, April 21, 2016

People who have been in the internet marketing world for years know how dynamic SEO marketing tips can be. In 2016, the keyword-stuffing habits of the past are more than obsolete; they can actually destroy your search engine rankings and leave your small business website lingering in obscurity on some never-seen results page.

Although SEO marketing has changed considerably since the early days, it is still one of the most powerful ways to get targeted traffic to a website, page or blog. These SEO quick tips can help you regain or retain those high SERPs for your small business site and continue to improve traffic, conversions and profits.

SEO Small Business Tips

These tips for SEO use evergreen techniques that focus on the searcher or site visitor instead of the bots and spiders that crawl pages for search engines. The main goal of modern SEO is to provide value for real people.

1 - Keywords still count, but current keyword trends really focus on phrases that people actually type in search engines. Many more people type, "How to get my dog to roll over" rather than simply "dog training."

2 - Find these phrases by exploring the intention of your small business website. Are you trying to sell a skin care product or get people to sign up for a newsletter so they can learn more? Instead of doing SEO for words or ideas, do it for purposes that benefit visitors.

3 - Get social. Sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram have become big players in the search engine optimization world. Interactions can boost rankings because when people talk about a site or something posted there, it rises in importance in the industry or subject.

4 - Go local. Directories and review sites that focus on local businesses improve search engine rankings these days. This is especially true for companies that have a physical, brick and mortar location, but virtual businesses who want to market to their community can also benefit.

5 - Focus on new popular technologies like mobile computing and voice activated computer usage. Every website needs to be mobile ready because an ever-increasing number of people access sites from their smartphones or tablets. Also, voice commands from systems like Siri or Cortana mean people are searching in different ways than ever before.

6 - Create content that excites search engines and visitors to the small business websites. Although you never have to be a world-renowned writer or videographer to create content for a site or blog, knowing how to do so effectively will do more good than other SEO small business tips.

SEO Writing Tips, Content and Video Creation

1 - Do not stuff a particular keyword or phrase into page content, an article or blog post. Major search engines are now working with algorithms that can recognize synonyms and related terms just as easily as a particular keyword. Write naturally and use plenty of words that all have to do with the specific topic. For example, if you are writing about dog training, you will also include terms that describe tricks you can teach or synonyms for training.

2 - Write long. Search engines and people value in-depth coverage of a topic more than a quick blurb about it. Most people use searches to find answers to questions or solutions to problems and the people who create the SEO rules know this. Web pages on your small business site and blog posts should be at least 1,000 words to make the most impact.

3 - Make the content interesting enough that people are inspired to read it, share it with friends on social media sites and comment on it. The more sharing and interaction you get, the better that page will do in the SERPs.

4 - Include photos, graphics and video whenever possible. Multi-media content on websites is ranked higher by search engines than ever before. Using unique graphics, pictures you took or created yourself or self-made videos have the greatest benefit because they are unique and more engaging for site visitors.

When presented with a neat list of SEO marketing tips for modern internet usage, small business owners may think the process can be done quickly and then left alone. In some ways, effective SEO does provide on-going organic traffic for the long term. However, the greatest benefits occur when the site owner or marketing team creates more optimized content consistently, builds brand recognition through social media and local directory presence and keeps tracking, analyzing and tweaking what works and what does not.

About the Author: Riya Sander is a freelance writer and a small business owner. She currently writes for several companies including Andaman SEO. In her free time, she always improve herself by reading the finance and management blog.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Having a proper marketing budget can make or break your business - it's one of those facets of owning a company that is absolutely crucial. This isn't an aspect of running your business where you want to cut corners. Taking the time to consider the cost of marketing for your company is something you'll want to take slowly and with a lot of careful planning and consideration. Let's take a look at a few very important points to successfully dividing and evaluating your marketing budget.

First Things First: Get Organized

Financial organization is the cornerstone of marketing channel management. It's likely that you'll have to estimate your projected future earnings and expenses, but try to be as accurate as possible.

Begin by having as crystal clear of an understanding as possible regarding your net 30 (monthly) revenue. For example, let's say that after expenses, your business earns anywhere from $10,000 to $15,000 monthly - what you're trying to determine here is your reliable revenue, which is the term for the funds that you can expect to bring in each and every month.

To determine your reliable revenue, you'll want to use the lowest possible figure. So in this example, that would be $10,000. Anything you happen to earn over that amount becomes additional revenue which can be allocated at the time, but not before.

Think of this as starting your budget from a "worst case scenario" position. If you're uncertain when calculating your monthly expenses or mezzanine debt rates, tools like a monthly budget calculator or the help of a financial manager can be very useful.

Deciding Which Marketing Channels to Utilize

Even if you can successfully apply for loan, you'll want to allocate your funds based on the figures you determined in the first step we discussed here. You'll first want to figure out where and how you'd like to spend your marketing budget.

There are usually three considerations successful business owners make before spending their marketing budget:

      The size of his or her budget

      Where and how the target demographic will be reached (i.e., which marketing channels

      Past experience and expertise

For example, even with the best construction loan, a building company should take these points into consideration. Organizing your marketing budget will likely begin with considering just how much money you have to spend - if your budget is quite small, you'll want to consider relatively inexpensive options like email advertising and lead generation, online advertising, creating a strong social media presence (which can be quite cost effective and, in many cases, cost nothing at all), and even reasonably priced print advertisements.

If your marketing budget is larger, you may also wish to consider marketing channels such as television, radio, or other forms of targeted media. Don't be afraid to find and use a marketing budget template to use as a helpful reference as you work out the details.

Knowing Your Target Demographic

In order to determine the best marketingchannels for your specific needs, the best place to start is to develop a demographic profile of your target audience. Begin by considering some of the following points of your target audience:



      Income level

      Interests, hobbies, and behaviors

      What kind of media they are most likely to consume

The last point is perhaps the most important and often the most difficult to accurately determine, however this will likely shed quite a lot of light on which marketing channels you should be using. Once you know where the eyeballs of your target audience are the most likely to be, you can begin working on developing your integrated marketing communications.

Test, Test, Test

A portion of your marketing budget should be allocated to testing. This should only be money that you can "afford to lose" - however, don't think of losing money on a failed marketing campaign as a hard loss. This is money you spent to gather data - you paid to find out what did and did not work.

If you haven't already, familiarize yourself with split and/or A/B style testing. This means that you'll develop multiple versions of each advertising campaign and test to see which works better. A/B testing involves two versions (A and B). If campaign B yields you a higher return on your investment, it's the "winner" and gets pitted against another variation of the same ad. This process repeats so that you are continually optimizing your marketing channels.

Analyze Data and Adjust Accordingly

The final step to finding the optimal marketing channels for your business is to take all of the data that you've gathered from your tests and analyze it. Ruthlessly cut out the channels that failed and optimize the ones which were successful. By repeating this process over and over, you'll eventually reach a point of peak marketing channel efficiency.

Marketing Channel Management is an Ongoing Process

Understand that marketing channel management is often an ongoing process that will need to be adjusted over time. Trends, shopping habits, and audiences themselves will change over the span of years and sometimes even months, so it is necessary to continually develop new marketing strategies and test new channels. As your audience changes, so should you.

About the Author : This article was written by Tully  with the help of HoldenCAPITAL, a specialist construction finance group in QLD, recognized as a market leader through its successes in deal structuring and the sourcing of debt and equity solutions.

Friday, February 12, 2016

How to Market Your App to the Masses

Friday, February 12, 2016

Developing and releasing a mobile app can be an expensive and time-consuming project. But the work does not end once the programmers figure out how to start an application and finish it. Without a well-done launch, all that time and effort will go to waste. With millions of apps now on the most popular marketplaces, it can be difficult to get attention and market the app to the right user base. Once there, it can be even harder to get consistent users. In fact, 1 in 5 apps never get used more than once after download. The key is proper marketing. 

Define Your Goals
Before you begin the actual marketing, you need to have a realistic measurement of how you define a successful launch. The exact metric you use depends on the type of app that you have made. The metric could be how many people install the app, how often people use it, the retention rate of those who install and do not uninstall, the number and quality of ratings received, or in-app purchases made. Keep in mind that this goal should focus on sustainable returns. Expect installation to be highest during the first month.

Use Social Media
Make sure to claim all the relevant social media accounts for your app prior to launch. This should go side-by-side with creating a website for the app. With registration so easy there is no need to be scrambling after the fact. Claim the accounts on all the most popular social media sites and apps, even if you do not plan to use them all. It is better to have your name already reserved in Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook, and everywhere else rather than finding them unavailable when you need them. Consider Go Far, a company which launched a driving optimization app, they set up a Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Linkedin, and even a Podcast to promote their app launch.

Use these social media accounts to advertise the app even while in development. Showing features in progress can build a community before that crucial first week in the wild. It also shows good interaction with potential customers, something that people find comforting and that can be essential in getting the app shared naturally between people. Make sure that all bios get switched over on launch day to include a link to where the app can be downloaded. 

Create the Narrative
Instead of waiting for the buzz to build on its own, give it a push. For many, app downloads are spur of the moment decisions so you need to put out interesting content to draw them in for just long enough. Make press releases and send them to websites that cover your industry, as well as websites that write about apps on the marketplaces you use. Write blog posts about what the app can do and how to use it and post these on a number of blogs, not just on the company website. 

Video serves an even more important role than text these days. Use a program like Camtasia to capture footage of the app being used. Add voice over to make a slick demo that can be posted to YouTube and Facebook. Make sure to detail what the app is used for, and more importantly what problems it can solve for a user. You will be surprised how quickly just a glimpse can lead to clicks. Do not stop at a simple demo. Make more videos that showcase different problems being solved by the app; title these videos after the problems primarily to draw in those searching for the solutions. Those who already need answers are easy to sell the answer to. 

Consider inviting early followers to a closed beta that makes them feel exclusive and appreciated. These people are your front line evangelists; make them happy. 

Supplement with Paid Advertising
Know your demographic and where they go. Use available tools like targeted Facebook ads, Google ads, and ads within other apps to grab that demographic. While this does not attract as many users as individualized and organic marketing, it brings in additional users that you need for launch. 

Respond to Customers
Use those accounts you set up. Keep customers informed and respond to their issues. Nothing makes a company look better than providing personal service. Use social media and the app itself to encourage those who love your app to review. Those reviews increase your visibility.

Friday, January 29, 2016

The Changing Face of Marketing

Friday, January 29, 2016

With people, some things never change. The same can be said about marketing.

Such as the fundamentals, according to Michael Fleischner, author of the new, 5th edition of SEO Made Simple - having the right message, testing your offers, getting the timing right and understanding your audience’s needs.

From the early editions of the book until now, not much has changed about Michael - except maybe everything.

More than a decade ago, he couldn't have articulated the concept of SEO without his first self-built website failing to rank. Then, to create his book’s 1st edition, not only did he have to teach himself how to write a book - he also had to learn how to design it, edit it and get it published.

No one would publish it. So, he taught himself how to self-publish a print version - with a full-time job and two little kids at home. Then, he taught himself how to publish an e-book version.

Fast forward years later to today, and for the latest 5th edition, Michael has created an audiobook version. How? Sure enough, by teaching himself how to do it.

When it comes to entrepreneurs, they grow and evolve, but do they ever really change? 

Actually, yes!

One sentence changed Michael’s life, and made him question everything, including his vision of himself. Famed marketer Greg Cesar told him over the phone one night that “the only reason you haven’t made more money online is because you don’t think you can."

A few short months later, Michael made $24,000 online in a single night, a defining moment that encouraged him to do more - ironically, in the end, by doing less. 

Feeling that he had “arrived,” he quit his day job and started his own successful marketing consulting business not long after the Greg Cesar story, only to willingly shut it all down and go back to corporate life.

There is Michael the corporate marketing executive, Michael the author, and Michael the entrepreneur. Each persona is open to persuasion. Do you have the right content?

Today, success to Michael means a sense of completion and purpose, gravitating toward meaningful things that have a defined beginning, middle and end. There’s a time for open ends, and a time for closed loops. Is your marketing one or the other?

So, not only is SEO not dead, according to Michael, it’s here to stay - because as long as people are using search engines to find what they need, you can’t ignore SEO. Whether it’s a meme or scholarly article, what makes content high-quality is subjective, which is why Michael wants us to better understand our audiences - like he has come to better understand himself.

Written by Ben Doda

Ben is a Senior Account Executive at Resound Marketing, a contributor to New Jersey Tech Weekly, and a TEDxCarnegieLake organizer.  

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Competing with giant online companies is difficult, but proper web design for small business will convince your share of visitors to become customers. Here are some ideas on how to get more sales.

 Make it simple. The more involved purchasing is, the less likely it happens. Complex or multiple forms may be asking too much. So are needless steps. Making it easy for visitors to convert to customers is the best way of upping conversion rates. It might be worth paying a web design company for an eye-catching and streamlined process.

Let images sell, as images inspire deeper emotional reaction than paragraphs of text. If visitors want to learn more, provide links or menus that allow them to do so. But try to limit explanatory text to thirty words or so, and choose images that show off your product and its benefits. The right photos get an instant positive response. If you need to do explaining, use a series of images and meaningful captions, not a stream of text. It's frustrating to scroll through long paragraphs on a small screen, these are reasons why design website that suitable for mobile devices. If you don't know how to embed YouTube videos, find out.

 It's boring in everyday communication, but mental conditioning comes from repetition. Not that you want to brow-beat or brain-wash your visitors. Repeating a few key selling points can help drive the point home. Regarding repetition, frequently review your own site to identify room for improvement. Your selling strategy should always evolve with your market. Always make the time to see what your top competition does, and make note of any web design tips and tricks that could improve your own customer conversion.

This might seem contrary to the whole idea of making a profit, but you want visitors to be pleased with your website, even if they aren't ready to purchase. You don't have to give away merchandise. Offer a free service, or buy or create informative eBooks as free downloads; just make sure it’s relevant to your site, that it's fairly unique and quality information, and includes a link back to your site.

You might also consider giving away freeware. If you're prepared to spend, you might hire someone to produce brand-able software with your own logo and links. A Google search can surprise you with what you can get for nothing. Add more, and let subscribers know; this way, you've got a network of happy people, for little or no cost.

Search for free tools, such as search engine submission, SEO analysis, or keyword research. There are free sources for art, eBook compilers, and logo and banner makers. Used correctly, these things bring more professional results.

 Believe it or not, your word is still worth something. If you provide guarantees, discounts, or next-day shipping, make sure visitors know it. Willingness to go the extra mile might be what seals the deal. Once you make a promise, though, go out of your way to make it happen. Site admins know better than anyone how tough it can be to get noticed and get paid. Adopt and track successful website design tips and tricks for yourself. Knowing what works with your visitors will mean steady increases in sales.

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