6 Ways to Ensure You Have Transparency in Social Media Marketing

Transparency is part of who we are as human beings – that is, unless you're a pathological liar. I'm willing to bet most, if not all of you reading this, take pride in your honesty in your day to day lives, right? Transparency is necessary to bring the human quality to social media – to bring authenticity, build those personal connections. Transparency builds trust – and trust is absolutely necessary for customer retention. Did you know 1/3 of millennials prefer to use social media as their method of communicating with brands? If you want to win them over, transparency is…

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10 Tips to Crafting a Landing Page Design That Converts

Landing pages are an important part of the sales funnel – they're where you direct your visitors when you want them to do something – whether it's sign up for your email list, or buy your new product. You'll likely have several landing pages to build over the course of your career, since each landing page needs a single message and purpose. This list of best practices is just that – a guideline to help you get started when designing your landing pages. You'll have to experiment to learn what works best with your audience. Ultimately, your customers are in…

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4 Ways to Increase Your Content Exposure on Social Media

Social media has done small business owners everywhere a great service, when you stop and think about it. No matter how small your business is, your business can promote itself on social media to people from around the world. Platforms like Facebook and Instagram have given small businesses owners microphones. Which is great, until small business owners inevitably realize that when everyone gets their hands on a microphone, it’s a lot harder for you to stand out in the crowd. Whether you’re new to the world of social media marketing or you’ve been involved for years now, it’s no secret…

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Breaking Down and Optimizing Your Business Marketing Budget

No matter what kind of business you’re running, it’s essential that you have a marketing strategy that’s expansive, practical and effective. Small business owners have some tough decisions to make here. If they’re new to the world of digital media marketing, creating a marketing strategy from scratch can be an intimidating task. With so many options and conflicting information available, it can hard for business owners to decide where to start. Even if they manage to decide on where to start, actually implementing those systems properly and in conjunction with the other aspects of a successful marketing strategy is no…

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The Engagement Checklist: A Guide to Creating Shareable Content Across Multiple Mediums

Engagement: it’s the buzzword of the digital marketing world. If we’re not careful, it’ll become the ‘synergy’ of our industry. Which would be a shame because despite its overuse, the concept of engagement is still a crucial aspect of successfully executing a marketing strategy. Small business owners may have more tools than ever before to reach out to audiences, but the marketing rules have changed. Audiences have come to expect more from their marketing content than a catchy jingle or a celebrity endorsement. Forget about the fact that thanks to the accessibility of digital marketing tools, every other small business…

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Interactive Content 101

It's no secret that customers hate it when you advertise to them. That's why they go blind and deaf to the sights and sounds of another self-promotional blog post or social media update. The internet is full of content, and consumers are bombarded with it every single day. If you want to stand out, you have to provide something of real value – something your consumers want and need. That's how you create good content. But as marketers get more creative with their content marketing efforts, consumers find themselves lost in the noise, still. Having a remarkable product or service…

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The Beginner’s Guide to Successful Remarketing

When you browse the Internet, have you ever noticed that certain companies seem to be following you around? You visit one website, and then all the sudden, you start seeing ads for them on Facebook, and start seeing suggestions to like their page in your feed? As creepy as it may be, it’s intentional, and that’s just part of marketing these days. Also known as retargeting, remarketing refers to that very process I just described. If you visit one site, and then go on to the next one, you may start seeing ads for that first website on the second…

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Could a New Design Be Coming to Google’s Mobile Search Results?

According to an article on Search Engine Journal, Google's testing a new design for search results – both paid and organic. The new design, which appears to be only available for certain searches and in certain locations, is likely still in the early testing phases. There's no confirmation at this time that the changes will go live for everyone for all searches, but just in case, it's always a good idea to stay on top of what's happening. The new design is similar to what we see now, but there are some subtle differences. There are only two ads at…

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9 Key Ingredients to Building a Killer Twitter Profile

Twitter has been around since 2006, and has evolved quite a bit over the years. Despite all the changes, one thing has remained the same – if you want to make a splash on the network and really build relationships with your followers, you must start with a good profile. Think of Twitter as a landing page for your personal brand, because every time you follow someone new, they're given the chance to follow you back. Your profile is what they'll use to make that choice, so it matters. When you consider that most Twitter users get multiple follow request emails…

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How to Build an Impressive LinkedIn Profile to Get You Noticed

LinkedIn is a powerful social network, and not just for those in the B2B space. LinkedIn users are more likely to actually visit your homepage, and have higher conversion rates compared to other social media platforms.If you want to make the most of your time and effort spent connecting with others there, it all starts with a stellar profile. The thing with LinkedIn, though, is you can't treat it the same way you'd treat a personal Facebook profile. Yes, it takes time and effort to get it done right, but anything worth doing is worth doing the correct way, wouldn't…

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Color Theory and Web Design: What You Need to Know for Marketing

Color is an important aspect of web design, because it can make or break even the most well laid out websites. Color has the power to evoke emotion, which has a tremendous influence on how people view brands, and how they feel while using a website. Plus, you can use color to dictate where you want someone's attention to go, which helps with conversions.   What is Color Theory? Color theory is the study of color. Before I get too deep into theory and how to choose the right schemes for your website and other branded materials, let's get some…

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How to Master Writing SEO Friendly Product Descriptions

Your product descriptions need not only to describe the product you're offering, but do so in such a way that appeals to your audience and the search engines. It's a task that's hard for many businesses to accomplish. Getting it right will no doubt take time, but it's an investment in your business, so it's worth it, right? Here I break down everything you need to know step by step.   Start with Your Customer Persona Your customer persona, also known as your buyer persona, is a critical piece of the puzzle here. If you don't know who your customers…

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Finding Where Social Media Fits Into Your Sales Funnel

Social media is a beast of its own, and There are so many different types of social media interactions that it's hard to say exactly where any of these fit into your sales funnel. As such, there are multiple schools of thought about where it fits into your sales funnel. Some will say it fits in each stage. Others will say it belongs in the brand awareness and discovery phase, and still others will say it deserves its own separate funnel. The right answer for you depends heavily on a number of factors, such as: what you're selling, the kind…

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Humanity in Social Media: Finding a Balance of Personal and Professional

No one is going to sit here and lecture you on how easy it is to develop an engaging social media presence or tell you that implementing a digital media marketing strategy will be easy. Why? Because that would be a bold-faced lie. Digital marketing strategies are tough to create, and even tougher to implement properly. Even with plenty of experience in the industry, you’re likely to run into your fair share of issues. While these issues could theoretically be anything, it’s amazing to see that most of the problems that small business owners deal with all boil down to…

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16 WordPress Plugins to Master Social Media Marketing

Did you know WordPress powers 28% of all the websites online today? Considering there are more than a billion websites online and more are launched every day, that's a lot. And I'm willing to bet, yours runs on it too. Us marketers are busy people – there's always something to be done. SO that's why I'm sharing a list of useful plugins with you today. Many of these will help you save time on your social media marketing, and if they don't have direct time savings, they'll at least help boost your traffic, and maybe even your following, too.  …

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The 8 Best Instagram Analytics Tools for Marketing Pros

Instagram, a photo and video sharing platform owned by Facebook, has more than 500 million monthly active users. As more businesses join the network because of its marketing potential, we're starting to see tools to help measure marketing efforts and ROI. If you want to dig deeply into your Instagram audience and activity, take a look at these free tools.   1. Instagram Insights This is the built-in analytics tool available to you through the Instagram app, if you have an Instagram for Business account. With this, you'll get basic statistics for analyzing your Instagram marketing. Learn more about your…

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4 Step Design to Master Your Businesses’ Sales Funnel

The sales funnel is a necessary part of any business venture – online or off. You have to know the path you're going to take customers on from start to finish, so you can build the steps and process to get them there; and so you can know where any customer or lead is at any given point. What makes the process difficult for many is that even though the stages are typically the same, the funnel that works for one business, doesn't necessarily work for another – even in the same niche. So, if the idea of designing your…

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Explaining Newsjacking and How to Use it For Your Branded Content

Breaking news happens all the time – just not always in your industry. But, when it happens in your industry, you don't have to be the first to break it to get benefit from it. Anything that happens in an industry remotely related to your business can be used to your advantage – either through a blog post, crafting a lead generation offer, or launching a social media campaign. That's newsjacking in a nutshell. And though it sounds like a negative term – it's completely legal, and lots of inbound marketers do it. You can, too. I'll show you how.…

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PPC Beyond Google AdWords: Worth the Investment?

When it comes to pay per click (PPC) advertising, the first thing most marketers think of is Google AdWords. And that's okay, because it works. And it works well, if you know how to optimize the campaign to get the best possible result. (See my post about keyword tiering if you're looking for a new strategy.) It works because Google holds the largest portion of the search engine market, but it's important to remember it's not the only option.   Start Working with Bing Using AdWords is a wonderful way to drive traffic (and hopefully sales) to your ecommerce business,…

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3 Steps to Creating Effective Ads With Instagram Stories

Whether you've been advertising on Instagram for a while and you want to explore the option to advertising in the Stories format, or you want to get started with Instagram advertising for the first time, I've written this guide for you.   Ads in Stories vs. Standard Instagram Ads Instagram Stories ads display between stories and make use of the entire screen, for a more immersive experience. In January 2017, Instagram started testing their story ads with 30 select brands. The results were so positive, they opened up the ad format to everyone just a few months later. Stories ads…

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The Psychology of Calls to Action

Every piece of content you write is aimed at getting readers… but having people read your content isn't enough to sustain your business. To get that content earning revenue means your content must entice readers to take action. You no doubt know how important the call to action (CTA) is, but not all CTAs are created equally. You could have the same content on your website with two different CTAs, and one could easily outperform the other. That's where split testing comes in handy to help you see what your audience is responding to better. So what is the difference…

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The Basics to Navigating a Social Media Presence for CEOs

Businesses have long known they have to be on social media if they want to connect with current and potential customers. Many companies have a dedicated social media person or department, managing all the social content and customer service, yet only a fraction of those businesses have a visible CEO on those same platforms. One study revealed 61% of CEOs don't have a social media presence at all, and of the ones that do, 70% of them can only be found on LinkedIn. When you consider this against the fact that 76% of executives believe it's a good idea to…

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6 Tools to Help You Master Pinterest Analytics for Your Brand

Pinterest took the internet by storm when it launched in March 2010. Some would say it was the beginning of the end for predominately text-based content, as many other image-centric platforms have since rose to popularity. Just two years after it hit the scene, it was considered the third most popular social network in the United States, behind only Facebook and Twitter – an amazing accomplishment for such a relatively unknown company. Since then, we've seen Pinterest transform into quite the marketing powerhouse – introducing a slew of new features including profile pages, enhanced search, promoted pins, and rich pins.…

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A Complete and Comprehensive Guide to YouTube Advertising

YouTube is no doubt one of the largest search engines – just right behind Google, which makes sense because Google owns it. With more than a billion users on the platform, there's a wealth of marketing opportunity out there. And, since it blends seamlessly with Google AdWords, it's easy to manage from within the platform. You'll have one less thing to login and out of, saving you time. But, I'll be the first to tell you, just because it's integrated with AdWords doesn't mean you should run your YouTube ads the same way…. Which is why I've written this guide…

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6 Tips to Using Pop-Ups Without Harming Your SEO

If you've been in the SEO game for any length of time, you're no stranger to Google changing things up on all of us. As they constantly strive to improve the user experience for their customer base, they've forced many websites to do the same. One of the recent updates cracked down on the use of interstitials, particularly on mobile websites. Interstitials? What the heck are those, you ask? That's nothing more than a fancy name for pop-ups, page takeovers, and scroll boxes… or anything else that comes up above your content that tries to convince your visitors to stop…

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