The Ultimate Social Media Launch Guide

When you're a brand new company, you know social media is an essential part of your success, but getting started can be incredibly overwhelming. There are so many social media platforms out there to choose from, and there's this idea floating around that to be successful, you must be everywhere. The truth is, you should only be where your customers are. If you're not targeting a primarily Millennial audience, then there's not much point in being on Snapchat. If you don't have the equipment to do YouTube videos right now, don't launch that channel yet. The most important thing to…

Read More

Developing a Successful Customer Loyalty Program

Today's consumer belongs to an average of 13.4 loyalty programs, but are only active in 6.7. More than half of brands (57%) say they'll increase loyalty program budgets in 2017. Why? The simple fact is it costs more to sell to a brand new customer than it does to sell to an existing one. It makes good business sense to reward the people who are loyal to your company, to keep them coming back for more, and convert them to brand ambassadors who are out there championing for you. But, unfortunately for marketers, it's not just slapping together any old…

Read More

Understanding Creative Commons Licenses

You use images online and off – for nearly everything in your business. Your business card, flyers, brochures, menus, social media graphics, blog posts… they are everywhere. And if you're just Googling the images you want, and saving from there, you could be in serious trouble. If the licensing isn't right – you're stealing. So, what's the answer? Creative Commons. The Creative Commons licenses are a blessing for creatives and small businesses alike. Creatives often don't want their work used for free without credit, but at the same time, small businesses don't have the budget to be paying for expensive…

Read More

Guest Blogging vs Outreach: What’s Better for Your Backlinking Strategy?

Both guest blogging and blogger/influencer outreach help to increase exposure for your business. These tactics can help you go beyond search engine optimization and social media to help you reach a broader audience, taking advantage of audiences others have already built. Both, however, rely on developing relationships with other bloggers in your industry, which take time to cultivate properly for the best possible result. Learn the difference between the two methods, and how you can use them both to expand your marketing backlinking strategy.   What is Guest Blogging? Guest blogging refers to submitting a blog post that is featured…

Read More

16 Ways to Promote Your Infographics

Infographics have become one of the most popular ways to share large amounts of information in an easy to understand format. When done properly they are visually pleasing, interesting, and useful. One of the best ways to repurpose popular content is to design a new infographic using the information. Once the infographic is ready to publish, use some of the following techniques to promote your infographics and ensure as many people as possible can benefit from it.     Locate the Right Influencers Think about the most important aspect of the infographic and who would benefit from the information. Look…

Read More

Crafting a Social Media Policy That Works

We've all heard stories about people getting fired after their employer discovered something on social media. Sometimes, it's because of something the employee said about the company or a customer; other times, it was because of something unrelated to their work, but a result of their online activity in their personal life. Do you want to avoid these situations and bad publicity for your business? The answer is to develop a social media policy that's shared with employees during the onboarding process. It helps to mitigate the risks for you as an employer and for them as the employee, and…

Read More

Cheatsheet: Creating a Brand Style Guide

Many brands lack a key piece of the puzzle for consistency – a brand style guide. Why do you need one? Well, if you're like a lot of businesses out there, you've got several people, some in-house, some contracted, working to produce all your collateral and assets. And if you don't want to spend a lot of time editing to ensure everything looks like it came from the same place, the brand style guide can save the day. You can use the guide to create anything you need for your brand – your website, advertisements, social media graphics, internal memos,…

Read More

How to Make Your Content Go Viral in 2017

Have you ever wondered what makes content go viral? While sometimes it is just the luck of the draw, there's been research to show what makes some types of content do better than others online. In this infographic, we break down the key things you need to create viral content: sharability, emotion, readership, imagery, and usefulness.   Copy and paste the code below to share this image on your site!

Read More

Create Your 2017 Social Media Calendar in Minutes

No matter the size of your business, if you want to help it grow, there needs to be at least some focus on social media. Whether you've already come with a streamlined social media workflow, or if you're trying to develop one for the new year to help you accomplish your business goals, setting a few minutes aside now to plan where the next 12 months are going on a social media calendar can save lots of time later when you get busy with other aspects of running the business.   Use a Template There are a ton of various…

Read More

New Year’s Resolutions: Goal Setting for 2017

Whether you set personal New Year's resolutions or not – and whether you're still sticking to them at the end of January, this is a wonderful time to reflect on where you are with your business, conduct an end of year analysis, and set some goals to help carry you through 2017.   The Power of Goal Setting Goals give you direction – something to aim for, to keep you moving forward. It's easy to get lost in a storm of options for your business, and when you have ideas flowing through you, you can pick one thing up and…

Read More

Storytelling for Business Tips That Will Change the Way You Market

Your company story is a vital part of your branding and customer experience. It sets the tone for who you are, and what customers can expect from you. It's the foundation of building connections with your customers, because when all is said and done, you're in the business of solving problems for your customers, and doing so in a way that makes people happy. The money you get as a result, is really nothing more than a reflection of your business model and satisfied customers. Storytelling is an incredibly powerful way to build relationships. It brings people together – think…

Read More

7 Mistakes You’re Making on LinkedIn That Kill Your Brand Image

Regardless of where LinkedIn falls in your company social strategy, it's a good idea to maintain a presence there. When used correctly, it can be a powerful tool for your business, going beyond recruiting to help engage customers, share internal information with your employees, and even generate sales leads. If you're already using a LinkedIn strategy to promote your business, you're one step ahead, maybe. It's possible that you're not using it to its fullest potential, making one or more of these mistakes.   Incomplete LinkedIn Profiles Check your profile for completeness, and ask your employees to do the same.…

Read More

15 Tools for Stellar Social Media Images That’ll Get You Followers

Creating social media images that stand out from the crowd is incredibly important. If the image isn’t clear, captivating, and chosen to fit within the company brand it can have a negative impact on the viewer’s impression of the company. Alternatively, a well-chosen image that has been carefully cultivated to impart a message that resonates with branding and customer expectations has the potential to create buzz throughout the social media channels on which it is shared. There are two important components in creating authentic and memorable social media images; finding the right picture and editing it effectively. It is possible…

Read More

7 Questions to Ask During a Social Media Audit to Avoid Disaster

As 2016 comes to a close, it's naturally time to focus on goals for next year. One of the best things you can do in preparation for developing a new strategy, or making adjustments to your current one is a social media audit.   Why Conduct a Social Media Audit? A social media audit is the chance to review what's working for your business, what's not working, and what you can improve across all the platforms you're using. It's up to you how often you want to go through it the audit process – but as you wrap up other…

Read More

Facing a Writer’s Block Meltdown? Try These 14 Blog Content Hacks

It happens to the best of us from time to time – writer's block for blog content. Even if you're on top of your strategy and you have an editorial calendar planned out month's in advance, you'll eventually reach a point where you're lost for what to write about – where you feel like you've covered everything there is to cover, and you just can't write one. more. word. The longer you've been writing on your blog, the harder you may find it to come up with fresh content for your readers, but the good news is – there's plenty…

Read More

Foolproof Ways to Adapt Social Media Content Across Channels

It may be easy to create a single message to share across your social media channels – but that is far from being an effective way to reach your audience. There are several social networks people use – and all of them have a different "hook" to get their attention. Simply crafting a message and keeping it the same across Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and others doesn't cut it if you're looking to expand engagement and reach. So, how can you make the same general social media content applicable to the networks where you're trying to build traction?   Adjust…

Read More

The Ultimate Guide to Building Buyer Personas for Your Business

Think about it – when you're trying to buy the perfect anniversary gift for your spouse, or the perfect gift for your best friend, you can see them in your mind as you're shopping. You can see what they want and what they need, the things they'd most likely be interested in, what they love, and what they hate. You may not always know what they don't need, but what you know about them helps you make sure you're on the right track to the gift that wows… no matter the occasion. That's how buyer personas work. Buyer personas, also…

Read More

Clicks Mean Nothing – Focus on Engagement

I know that's not what you wanted to hear – I see you over there, beaming from ear to ear because this month's page views were 200% higher than they were this time last year. I'm not here to rain on your parade – but I'm here to let you know you may want to consider shifting your mindset and tracking different metrics. You'll see a different, better picture of what's really going on with your audience. Sorry, guys, it's time to stop bragging about how many people saw your video on Facebook, and how many people read your blog…

Read More

Dissecting an Effective Outreach Campaign

To build an effective outreach campaign, you must first look at the big picture. It can be tempting to think you know where you're going and how you're going to get there, but moving too quickly, skipping steps, or worse, starting in the middle, can spell doom for any outreach campaign.   The Brain: A Solid Plan At this sage, you're focusing on building the overall plan for your outreach campaign. You'll focus on the goals, objectives, and the driving forces behind it. What are the Driving Forces of the Outreach Campaign? What's behind the marketing campaign? Why do you…

Read More

9 Content Curation Tools to Fill Your Social Calendar

The Rule of Social Media, as varied as it may be depending on the source, always says you should never focus on tooting your own horn too much. Yes, you want to use it to share news about your company and new products or services, but ultimately, your social media channels are a platform to connect with your potential customers to provide value. This means curating relevant content from other sources, to engage, inform, and entertain your audience. Luckily for you, you don't have to spend hours every week scouring Google and the internet in general to find the content…

Read More

6 Steps to a Flawless Digital Marketing Strategy

Crafting a digital marketing strategy is difficult work, whether you're a new or seasoned marketer. What worked in the past may not work now, and with constant market changes – the addition of new platforms, algorithm adjustments, and more competition – nothing is a guarantee of success right out of the gate. But, just because something is a "failure" doesn't mean it's a waste of your time and effort. Everything is a lesson in marketing – and there's a solution for everyone. Even not-so-glamorous brands can rock digital marketing. It's all in the plan, and knowing how to reach your…

Read More

5 Essential Pinterest Marketing Tips for Businesses

Are you unsure if Pinterest marketing will work for your business? Interested in ways to make the social network help you get more exposure? By digging a bit deeper and going beyond the obvious uses for Pinterest, you can use it to expand your social presence and attract new leads. In this article, you'll discover 5 examples of businesses rocking Pinterest marketing in unconventional ways. I'll show you how you can follow their lead to do the same.   #1: Engage and Build Relationships with Group Boards and Guest Pinners Use group boards and guest pinners to engage followers and…

Read More

Ultimate Guide to Repurposing Content

Chances are, the majority of your blog is dedicated to text-based blog posts with images included throughout. And while that's a good place to start – your blog can be more than that. Including other types of content, even if it's based on the same basic topic ideas, can help you reach more people, expand your blog identity, and get more link-building opportunities. But, beyond that, there are other reasons why you should consider repurposing content. Instead of just singing the praises of repurposing content – I'm going to show you how to identify the content on your blog that's worthy of repurposing, and then give…

Read More

10 Psychology Hacks to Market Smarter

Part of me always wanted to go into psychology, but I decided spending 12 years in school to earn a Ph.D. was a lot – and I wasn't sure I could handle my own issues, let alone help countless others with theirs. The mind and the way it works has always fascinated me, so it's no real surprise I ended up in marketing. After all, the two share a lot in common. Marketing doesn't focus on helping people solve their problems like a therapy session, but it still involves using psychological tactics to communicate brand messaging – and stellar brands…

Read More