Marketing Stratigies

Marketing Trends To Make Your Mark In 2018

January might mean the time to be making new resolutions personally, but it may also be time for businesses to do the same. One resolution all businesses should pin to their office wall is revisiting and refreshing their current marketing strategy. To continue to grow as a thriving business in today’s busy modern world, keeping track of the newest trends can make the difference between making that 1000th sale or missing out altogether. Below are a few trends that are key to watch out for this upcoming year:  

Hello Siri, Alexa, and Google

Voice-activated search is becoming increasingly popular in 2018, especially with the introduction of devices such as the Google Home Hub and the Amazon Echo to our homes. These devices have revolutionized the home by allowing consumers set alarms, play music and order shopping using their voice alone. The smart technology means marketers now have the power to create a specialized copy using advanced keywords to help consumers find even more services and products related to their voice command.     

Smartphone Traffic

As millennials become the focus more of marketing in 2018, it’s safe to say traffic sources are currently to be found primarily from smartphones, rather than desktop computers, as they grew up with the power of the internet at their hands. Traffic from smartphones is predicted to continue to rise in 2018, meaning creating engaging, yet concise, copy that’s small-screen friendly is key. Your current content on-site and your search engine optimization strategy may need to be revisited to allow your consumers to read your copy easier on the small screen. It’s time to move away from chunks of paragraphs, each heavy with keywords, and instead craft content people can read and view on the go. This could mean turning more towards videography and infographics, rather than text-centered articles.  

Social Media and Live Videos

Tapping into social media isn’t a new idea or a new trend, but it’s arguably one of the fastest growing marketing platforms for the digital age. Nearly 800 million users log on and post to Instagram every month. Social media channels are ideal for sharing a variety of rich-media posts, including videography. Live Videos came into their own in 2017, but in 2018, the trend continues to grow. They provide real-time engagement with visitors to your social media channels, with Facebook and Instagram being the ones to watch regarding Live Videos. They can target potential audiences as consumers chose to watch a Live Stream and continue to scroll past advertisements.   

Augmented and Virtual Reality

The popularity of smartphone game Pokémon Go was able to show marketers that there is a channel waiting to be tapped into for their next step in their strategy. Pokémon Go was one of the first that used AR content to create an immersive game by tracking the users’ locations and time-zone to adapt their experience. Augmented Reality offers consumers the opportunity to experience immersive story-telling from their favorite brands, and it’s one to watch in 2018.

Read more...
5 Tips For Marketing Online Within Your Niche

5 Tips For Marketing Online Within Your Niche

Many companies have a select audience to which their product or service appeals. General marketing tactics may work for the majority of businesses but may not always work within your niche. This is why it’s important to not follow one-size-fits-all marketing strategies and to try and think outside the box. Here are some tips for targeting a niche and getting leads.

Outsource specialist marketing companies

If you don’t want to do your own marketing and would rather hire a company to do it for you, think twice before selecting a general marketing company. It may work out better to find professionals within your niche. If you’re a tech startup hoping to get some press attention, it could be worth looking into a tech-focused PR company who are more likely to have better contacts in tech magazines and blogs that your average generic PR company. Similarly, if you’re looking to get a professional website designed, you may want to consider a designer who caters to your field. There are companies that specialize in web design for specific trades such as law firm website design that may be able to help you stand out whilst creating something professional and presentable. As with outsourcing any professional, check that these companies have good user reviews and credentials so that you know that you can trust them.

 

Use relevant social media

It doesn’t hurt to get your business on all social media platforms, but clearly, some will be more beneficial than other making them more suited for focusing on. Facebook and Twitter are useful for all businesses. Instagram, on the other hand, may only be suited if you have physical results that you can photograph on a regular basis. A cake-making company or a retailer may be able to use Instagram to successfully show off their products, helping them to gain clientele. However, it’s unlikely you’ll get much out of Instagram if you’re an accountancy firm, with little to photograph on a daily basis. Contrastingly, sites like Linked In are likely to far more useful to business-to-business companies like accountancy firms than they are to a cake-baker. Linked In is ideal for professional networking and could be a better place to focus your efforts, messaging and linking up with other companies that might need your services.

 

Focus your keywords

Making use of the right keywords can get the right people visiting your site. If you’re doing an AdWords campaign and creating a web ad, you’ll want to choose keywords that cause your ad to show up when key people search for you. Whilst it’s good to use some broad keywords, make sure to use some more specific keywords and related keywords within your niche. If your company sells backpacks for travelling, think beyond ‘backpack’ (people looking for a work or school bag could be searching this) and consider keywords like ‘travel backpack’, ‘affordable travel gear’ and ‘passport wallet’ (people looking for a passport wallet might also be looking for a new travel backpack).

 

Get involved in online communities related to your niche

There may be online communities which attract your key client base. If your company sells cameras, you might want to consider photography forums and photography blogs. Promoting your product in these forums and in comments sections of blogs could be seen as spammy, but by contributing regularly you could build a good reputation for yourself which will help your online credibility.

 

Cross-promote with companies within your niche

Another great way to market within your niche is to team up with other companies within your trade. You can agree to promote their wares in exchange that they do the same for you. This could involve advertising the company on your website, posting about them on social media or even retweeting some of their posts. You’ll want to avoid a conflict of interest of course – if you’re a restaurant, you might not want to promote another restaurant in your area although it could prove beneficial to team up with a local hotel (you recommend them in exchange that they recommend you). If you’re a budget company, you may want to team up with another budget company, whilst a high-end company might benefit to team up with another high-end business.

Read more...
Web Design

Landing Page Design: Tips and Best Practices

While the ad copy of your landing page is important, landing page design also plays a large part in maximizing its performance.

It’s easy to get carried away tweaking all the elements of your landing page’s design. However, you want to focus on the changes that will make the biggest impact.

To help you increase your conversions, Bradley shaw from dallaswebsitedesign picked up some solid landing page design tips and best practices for optimizing your offer.

Making Your Landing Page Flow 

  1. Remove Unnecessary Distractions

Landing pages should look and feel intuitive. The visitor should quickly get an idea of what they’re being offered and what actions they can take upon going to your page. There are many distractions that can get in the way of this process including images, security seals, and even the navigation menu.

In this example, VWO increased signups by 100% by simply removing the navigation menu. It goes to show that keeping your design minimal and focused can pay off.

  1. Use Typography that Is Readable

When you study the best landing page examples, you’ll notice that most of the pages use typography that’s easy to read. There’s often nothing fancy going on. The focus is on making sure that visitors can quickly scan the message and get the main point.

There are also other elements that make the text, particularly the headline work better. A strong color contrast is used to make the core message stand out. Headlines use bigger and thicker font. There’s also a visual hierarchy to the text that leads readers from one point to the next.

  1. Use Relevant Imagery

A common mistake that many landing pages make is using the wrong images to support their offer. Too many websites still rely on stock images to make their website look more professional.

The problem with this is that certain stock images have characteristics that indicate that it’s a stock image. You want to use strong imagery that supports your message. For example, CodeCombat uses a great image of kids having fun on their computers while learning to programme.

  1. Optimize for Mobile VisitorsMobile Optimized Web Design

Landing page design gets tricky when dealing with mobile visitors. There are many things that you’ll have to adjust including the page layout, content formatting, loading speed, font size and web buttons.

If you’re using a responsive theme, do not assume that your theme will automatically optimize your page for mobile. Do your due diligence and test how your landing page appears on different devices, browsers, and screen sizes.

  1. Use Visual Cues

Visual cues can help visitors pay attention to your message and increase your conversions. You can use them explicitly and implicitly. Arrows, circles and dotted lines would be examples of explicit visual cues.

A person looking at a specific direction, spacing, color contrasts and the shape of design elements are examples of implicit visual cues.

This study by ConversionXL found that using a direct arrow increased the attention span spent on a landing page form. Ideally, you’ll want to use a mix of both for the best results.

Optimizing Forms and Buttons

  1. Experiment with Different Forms

There’s nothing wrong with using standard forms if you’re just collecting the visitor’s name and email. But if your forms call for more than that, you may be able to see better results by using form design that’s interactive.

Tools like Leadformly allow you to use multi-step or quiz style forms that can increase signups. It also uses a clever progress bar to indicate to users how far they are along into the form.

  1. Optimize Your Call to Action Buttons

Ultimately, you want your visitors to take action. That means that you have to get them to press the button to either subscribe or go to the order page. That’s why the design of your call to action button is important.

Start by experimenting with the size and color of the button. Next, you want to play around with the actual call to action text.

You’ll be surprised at how much of an impact that this simple test can make to your conversions. If you’re using a longer landing page, you will also want to try adding multiple CTA buttons throughout the page to see how that performs.

Trust and Credibility Elements

  1. If You’re Going to Use Testimonials, Make Them Real

Using testimonials on your page is one of the best ways to strengthen your offer. But it can backfire on you if your testimonials are poor. Common mistakes include using low-quality photos (or none at all), using initials instead of full names, and using general feedback.

If you’re going to use testimonials, make sure that they’re real. Include the headshot, full name, title, and company of the person that gave you the testimonial. Using video may be even better as adding video to full-page ads increases engagement by as much as 22 percent.

  1. Adding Trust Elements Can Lift Conversions

There are many other things that you can do besides adding testimonials to get visitors to trust your landing page. If your company has been featured in trusted media channels or publications, you may want to use their logos on your page and link to the source.

Other elements that can help you include the about us page, privacy policy, and a money back guarantee if you’re making a transactional offer. Some other supporting pages that can help include the how it works and comparison sections.

As you can see, there are a large number of design elements that can impact the performance of your landing pages. There’s no hard and fast rule for what approaches work. It’s best to focus on the fundamentals of why certain design approaches work and experiment with different designs.

Hopefully, these tips and best practices will inspire you to go beyond the ad copy of your landing page and get you in the process of optimizing your page’s design as well.

Read more...
Business Worker

What You Need To Grow Your Small Business

Owning a small business is an accomplishment to be proud of. You’ve worked hard to get it off the ground and build relationships with customers. Take a breather and let it all sink in before you proceed to where you’re heading in the future.

After deciding it’s time to expand, start taking the proper steps to make your dream a reality. There’ll be a lot of work ahead and you have to be certain it’s the right time to make your move. Timing is important when it comes to tackling big career moves like this one. See what you need to grow your small business.

Determination

Once you decide you’re moving forward with growing your business, you have to be fully committed. This means sticking it out through thick and thin. It’s not going to be easy and there will be hiccups along the road. You have to have a fighting spirit and be willing to stop at nothing until you make it happen. Motivate yourself by remembering why you started in the first place and use your willpower to march forward with confidence.

Customers & Connections

Start networking early and getting involved with the right people who can help and support you. You’re going to have a lot of questions along the way and will want trusted people in your corner who you can bounce ideas off of. You’re also going to need your customers to come along on the ride with you. That’s why it’s so important to build loyal customers in the beginning stages. You want to know that people are going to come back time and time again and purchase your products or services. You, along with the people who’ve helped bring you this far are going to be key in helping you get to the next step.

Website

If you don’t have one already, this is definitely the time you want to work on building a company website or making the current one even better. A website is a great tool for building brand awareness and a resource for customers to turn to when they have questions or concerns. Be sure to include sliders, beautiful images and content your audience can relate to. Having a striking website will make it easier for customers to find you online and get their questions answered without even needing to contact you. Use your website as a marketing tool to increase sales and collect new contact information. Hire professional help to assist you if you’re not skilled in building websites.

Marketing Plan

Branding is key to expanding your business. You need customers to recognize you right away and see you as having a strong, positive reputation. Marketing and sales will be your saving grace when it comes to growing your business. Use social media, advertisements and marketing automation to drive more results. If you run a small business, it can be hard to stay connected with customers when you’re trying to keep up with items on your to-do list. Automation software helps you find your audience, engage your customers and build your brand. This is especially helpful for businesses who don’t have a lot of resources or time to be spent sending out email messages one by one. In any case, be sure you’re making consistent touchpoints with current, past and potential customers.

Sales

You aren’t going to get anywhere without having the sales numbers to prove it. This is the stage where you need to be honest with yourself and determine if it’s the right time to expand your business. Make sure your sales are scalable and have the momentum to bring you the numbers you need to grow. The proof needs to be there before you move forward. It’s not a good idea to hope that your sales will turn around in the future. Crunch the facts and figures and do an honest analysis of where you’re at and where you’d like to be. If it’s too early, step back and figure out what you need to change to improve your numbers.

Hardworking Employees

The time has come to evaluate the resources in your business and see what you’re going to need to take you to the next level. Likely, you’ll require more employees to help you reach your goals. There’ll be more tasks to handle and customer requests that start rolling in. Do it the right way and come up with policies, procedures and job descriptions before you start bringing people through your doors. You’re going to want to hire the right people for the role and trust that they’ll do a great job for you. This is the time where you’re going to want to start delegating tasks and letting go. You’re the owner, but that doesn’t mean you have to do it all anymore. Growing your business gives you the opportunity to focus on strategy level decisions.

Patience

This isn’t going to happen for you overnight. Growing your business is a process and it’s a good idea to remain patient. It’s okay to be excited, but try not to get ahead of yourself. There are a lot of steps to complete and work to be done before you successfully expand your business. Talk to other entrepreneurs and small business owners who’ve been through it and get their advice. Learn all you can before you embark on the project. Remember that one bad day doesn’t mean your entire future is falling apart. Stay levelheaded and manage your stress along the way. You’ll be encountering and working with a lot of people throughout your journey and will want to present yourself in the best light possible.

Conclusion

Being a small business owner comes with its perks and struggles. If all is going well, it’s a good chance to stop and think about the future of your company. Expanding your production is an option, but comes with a lot of responsibility and tough decisions you have to be willing to make. This is what you need to grow your small business.

Read more...
3 Ways for You to Create a Buzz around Your Business

3 Ways for You to Create a Buzz around Your Business

In order for your business to be successful, it is vital that you understand the best ways to get people interested. Ideally, you want people to be excited whenever they see your company name. A bland and uninspiring organization will find it hard to attract and hold onto, clients. It will also struggle to get the best out of its employees. Make sure that you are doing everything in your power to establish your company as a hub of innovation. In a competitive market, originality is by far the best way to stand out. If you are hoping to run a successful business, for the foreseeable future, you will need to read on. Below are three ways for you to create a buzz around your business.

Interact with the Public

Never forget to interact with the public because they are all your potential clients. Don’t just take the same approach as every other company. Instead, work with your team to find innovative ways to attract positive attention. Sometimes, the more extreme an idea is, the better it will work. For instance, you could arrange a flash mob. This is a fantastic way to get people excited about your business. It also shows that you don’t take yourself too seriously. If you decide to take this route, you will need to put in a lot of effort. A poorly arranged flash mob would be a disaster. If you are struggling, you could always hire professionals to ensure that you get your desired results.

A slightly tamer option is for you to attend a trade fair. This is a great way for you to interact with the public on a personal level. You can answer all of their questions and tell them everything that they need to know about your company. While it is important to be professional, you should also take the chance to stand out. You could provide some creative freebies or some refreshments. You could even push the boat out and hire a masseuse. This is a sure way to attract people to your stand. Your generosity and innovation will also help your business to stay in their minds. Don’t forget to involve your social media platforms with your live events. You could set up a live stream or get one of your employees to send out regular tweets. The important thing is to let the public know that you are willing to engage with them.

Invest in Your Branding and Marketing

Investing in your branding and marketing strategies is a great way to create a buzz around your business. The right approach can completely transform your business and its future. Make sure that you are always thinking outside of the box. If you and your team are struggling to come up with ideas, why not turn to the professionals? This is a great way to ensure that you are not being let down by your branding or marketing. Even if you outsource the bulk of the project, you should still stay heavily involved. Understanding the process of developing your company’s branding and marketing strategies will allow you to have a clearer vision of what your business does. Often, you will need to brainstorm all of the key services that your business provides. You will also need to consider what concepts are important to you. Maybe you want to offer unprecedented levels of customer service? Perhaps you are aiming to be a company that is an expert in its field? Whatever the case, talking through your marketing and branding will allow you to understand your business on a deeper level.

Focus on Your Online Presence

When something goes viral, it is always online. Using the internet has become the fastest way to spread information. The right approach to the digital world could take your business from zero to one hundred in a matter of seconds. Make sure that your website is working in your favor. Whatever you do, don’t just sit back and wait for the views to come in. Instead, you need to take matters into your own hands. You can find an SEO provider that will help you to get more traffic to your website and to boost your search engine rankings. It also works with everything from white hat guest posts, press releases, local NAP citation building, blog content, high-end editorial links and more! If you are considering this option, you can find reviews of the hoth online. This will allow you to better understand the services that you could be benefiting from.

If you are thinking about your online presence, you should also consider placing, even more, focus on your relationship with social media and digital marketing. One new technique, that your competitors might not have considered, is video marketing. This is a great way for you to instantly capture the attention of your audience. It will also help to establish you as a company that is ahead of the times. Instead of shying away from technology, you should place it at the forefront of your business plans. Video marketing is also a fantastic way for your business to go viral. You will improve the likelihood of this if you try to inject some humor into your approach. Try to be as creative as possible. If you are struggling, another option is to stay up to date on all of the latest light-news stories. Then, if something happens and your business can make a pun out of it, you can take the opportunity to make headlines. This approach will especially appeal to the younger generation. However, if you get the balance just right, you should be able to come up with a concept that is universally agreeable. The most important thing is to always have your company brand in mind. While it is great to get your name out there, you should also be certain that it is for the right reasons. It may take you a while to get the hang of it, but once you do the rewards will be endless.

Read more...