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E-Marketing

5 Actionable Digital Marketing Resolutions For 2015

As we wrap up 2014, now is a prime time to look back at what successes we’ve had at work and where we may have room for improvement.  Many business leaders are projecting the next year’s potential growth along with strategies to increase business development.  While there are many known general methods to market a business, here is a list of 5 very specific actions you MUST take to stay ahead of the curve in 2015.

5 Specific Marketing Action Steps to Take in 2015:

marketing trends 20151. Use Facebook “custom audiences” for ads. Facebook has recently launched a new way to target your ads to your current contact lists.  You can import emails or phone numbers in the audience tab in ‘ads manager’.  Then when you create the ad, you can choose that custom group to show it to. 

Why it works: With Facebook targeting options you can narrow your ads even more by age, location, and interests.  This will increase click-through’s substantially as well as provide you with more options such as Facebook offers, deals and more to present to your interested lists that you could not otherwise through email. 

2. Build your personal brand on LinkedIn. Since rolling out the ability to post blogs and articles directly on the LinkedIn platform, many savvy leaders have begun to leverage their knowledge and expertise to further their personal and business brand awareness. Make sure your profile is updated and start planning the types of posts you can contribute on the largest business networking social media site. 

Why it works: When you post quality content on LinkedIn, you position yourself as a thought leader in your industry and build yourself a positive reputation with potential customers or referral sources.

3. Get on Google My Business. Google+ has been slowly creeping up on Facebook as the second largest social networking site since it launched in 2011. Google provides you with the platform to create a personal identity along with a business page, locations for your company and it all gets tied together under Google My Business.

Why it works: Having all these elements updated and posting relevant information to your page can actually help you rank higher!

4. Brand your visuals for Pinterest. Pinterest currently has 70 million users and that number is growing by the minute. People pin articles, blogs, websites, recipes, shopping, lifestyle dreams and work ideas onto their boards, and the one thing they see when searching the site is the visual associated with the content. Make sure that each piece of collateral you produce is branded well and also includes a quick catchy title.

Why it works: By placing your logo on all your visuals, you are expanding your reach to each and every person that searches for that topic on Pinterest.  When you place a CTA title on the visual, it will increase the clicks and provide viewers with a sense of motivation to read more.

5. Re-purpose your blogs. Pick 5 of your most popular 2014 blogs and expand on them.  Take those blogs and create a “part 2” for each. Or turn one into into a whitepaper or e-book. 

Why it works: By re-purposing your successful content that you already know is popular, highly searched for and engageable, you can collect leads and take potential customers further down your funnel.

2015 will bring us many new opportunities to build our audiences and see marketing success.  Which of these actions do you plan to implement into your strategy?

 

5 Reasons to Hire A Digital Marketing Consultant

You may have your own in-house team of talented marketers, or you perhaps you are on the fence about hiring a full-time employee to take on your marketing needs.  Regardless of where your company stands with it’s marketing strategies, your business can always benefit by bringing in a digital marketing consultant.

Below are 5 key reasons you should consider hiring a marketing consultant:

1. Digital Marketing Consultants stay on top of the latest trends in the marketing world.5 reasons to hire a marketing consultant

A digital marketing consultant NEEDS to know exactly what the newest and greatest strategies are in order to stay in business themselves. Consultants make sure to continuously educate themselves by attending webinars, expos, conferences and networking events. The greatest part is that the consultant does this all at his/her own expense, not on your company’s dime.

2. Digital Marketing Consultants have great insight from working with  other companies and multiple industries.

This is one of the most motivating reasons, if not- the most important reason to hire a consultant.  A successful digital marketing strategist or consultant works with an array of clients.  When a specific campaign is successful with one client, the consultant will likely implement it with all other clients where deemed appropriate. Consultants will also use his/her positive experiences with other business’s marketing platforms (pros/cons of email platforms, tracking software, lead generation systems etc.) to bring to your company as recommendations.  It is this type of constant exposure to other options that sets a consultant apart from a full time employee.

3. Digital Marketing Consultants give you what you pay for… and then    some.

Unlike a full-time employee, a consultant only gets paid for actual work produced. Great consultants work hard until the job, campaign or project is complete, which in most instances means quicker turn around time.  Consultants also have great resources of marketing experts. Need a web developer? Looking for a graphic designer? Marketing Consultants likely have a plethora of names to refer.

4. Digital Marketing Consultants have a fresh take on your company.

Let’s face it, things get stale. Even the greatest content developers hit a wall at some point.  Bringing in a consultant will also bring in fresh ideas.  Digital Marketing Consultants also often pick up on areas that can be improved that have been a part of the strategy for so long, no one else even gave it a second thought. A consultant can also work as an additional asset to your marketing team.  Many companies are confined by time and resources.  It can never hurt to bring on an expert to help loosen those restraints on the team.

5. Digital Marketing Consultants can connect you to other clients.

Building your network also builds your company. Many inbound marketing strategists/consultants will connect clients to cross-promote events, guest blog for one another, send targeted emails to segregated lists and feature each other’s products on social media.  This is a great way to expand customer reach and gain greater exposure.

To see if you business would benefit from a digital marketing consultant, contact us here.

How to Decrease Unsubscribe Rates

Too often I receive a blast from a small or medium sized business that just makes me cringe.  For example, the other day, I received an email from a company that had information in it for its current clients, which I am not.  It made no sense that they sent it to me, but odds are, they sent it to their entire list.  There are clear ways to increase your unsubscribe rate, and not sending relevant information to your entire list is the biggest one.

Unsubscribe button

According to an Epsilon Study in 2009 67% of North Americans unsubscribe from a company’s email list because they found the content irrelevant.   Follow the tips below to increase your open rates, decrease your unsubscribe rate and encourage overall engagement with your email readers.

6 Steps to Decrease Unsubscribe Rates:

  1. Use your email provider to create segregated lists.  No matter if you only have 50 subscribers or if you have 30,000 subscribers, each subscriber is unique, has his/her own needs and should be treated as such.  Remember your lists are only seen by you and your marketing team so do not worry about the subscribers knowing which list they are on.  Utilize the list option in your email platform and separate subscribers by services, products or client type.
  2. On your sign up form create interest choices.  This is the best way to truly gain an understanding of what you client wants.  Let your client decide which list they want to be on!   Keep the choices less than 6, as too many choices can lead to a subscriber abandoning the sign-up altogether.
  3. Import your own list of current clients.  Keep an updated list of your current clients in your email database.  Use this list to send updates about client related events, updates, and information that pertain to just the active customer.  The same goes for creating a list of potential customers.  Think of each subscriber as in a different phase of the purchaser’s path.  Your email communications need to nurture each lead appropriately according to his/her place on that path.
  4. Keep the titles (and content) relevant to the audience.  Even if they personally signed up for your list, a subscriber still needs motivation to open the email.  Make sure the title is as relevant as the content in the email!
  5. Only send one large communication piece to the entire list per month.  The second reason people unsubscribe?  Too many emails.  If you are sending more than one large blast to your entire list each month, you become a nuance and also devalue the information you are sharing.  By limiting your large blast to once a month, you create anticipation from your customers.  Make sure your ‘entire list’ email combines “something for everyone”.
  6. Make sure your “forward to a friend” button is prominently displayed.  Did you know that depending on your email provider, and unsubscribe process, if someone forwards your blast to a friend (using the traditional forward method, not the button in your email), the friend can unsubscribe the original subscriber?  All the friend has to do is forget it was sent as a forward and click the unsubscribe button.  To avoid “wrongful unsubscribes” make sure you place the “forward to a friend” button at both the top and in the footer of the email.  By using the button, friends can not unsubscribe for the sender.

To learn more about increasing subscribers, click here.

How to Increase Newsletter Sign-ups

Before covering the tips on how to increase sign-ups, you need to be clear on why you want more.  People often think the larger number of sign-ups means you are doing better at marketing your business.  This is not the case.  It’s what actions the subscribers take after reading the content- that matters. Increase newsletter signupsTherefore, you need a newsletter goal.  Each piece of communication should have a planned purpose and desired outcome prior to sending it.  Once you have an idea of what action you would the readers to take, you can strategize the content you want in it.

 6 Tips to Increase Newsletter Sign-ups:

  1.  Create Sign-Up Forms.  This seems simple enough, yet I have seen many clients that enter in emails personally whenever they get them and don’t provide website “passerby’s” to sign up on their own.  Remember that there may be a potential customer who is not ready to call you about services, but is still interested in your content.  By providing sign-up forms on your site, you are supplying customers with an easy and non-pressured way to learn about your company.
  2. Place the forms everywhere! Have a link in the navigation of your site titled “newsletter”.  You should provide sign-up forms in the sidebar of your site and buttons to sign up on appropriate pages.   You should also have a sign-up extension on your Facebook business page.
  3. Opt-in option.  No reputable email platforms these days allow you to use unauthorized or purchased emails.  If you want to gain the trust of your readers, gain their subscription and ultimately gain their business, make sure your opt-in (and opt-out for the matter) options are set correctly and easy to manage!
  4. Provide subject choices.  Email open rates will increase when the email is specific to the needs of the reader.  Provide a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 6 different subject check-boxes for new sign-ups.  See example here by click here.
  5. Clearly state the value.  Explain in a sentence or two above the newsletter fields, what the reader will receive or how they will benefit by signing up.  What makes your emails unique?  Keep it short and sweet.
  6. Make the emails forwardable and sharable.  Make sure you have a “forward to a friend” option inserted in every email communication that goes out to the public.  You also want to connect your newsletters with your Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook pages to autopost.  And thirdly, insert social sharing buttons in each email campaign.  As outsiders see the emails from a friend’s (whom they already trust) page or a forward, they are likely to sign up as well. 

To learn more on e-marketing, sign up for our newsletter by clicking here!