Social Media

Marketing Strategies for Beginners

Marketing Strategies for Beginners

Promoting an online business can seem like a daunting task at first but there are lots of things you can do to give your company the best chance of success. If you are a beginner to business, you have an interest in how marketing works or you need to promote your startup then you have come to the right place. It might seem very complex and difficult to get your company noticed by customers but there are some techniques and methods you can use to get your business the recognition it deserves. You can start with the basics and then build up the time and energy you invest in marketing once you get the hang of it. Every business needs an online presence nowadays to have the minimum amount of success, so make sure you take the time to market yourself properly. Read on to find out what you can do to market your business and how you can go about it. Get ready for your business to get noticed, and for your online presence to get people talking.

 

Get Tweeting

All businesses will benefit from taking advantage of social media. The kinds of social media you use might depend on the nature of your business but for most people advertising themselves in as many ways as possible gets more people noticing them and talking about them. Twitter can be a particularly powerful tool and is definitely something all businesses should consider. The twittersphere links people and shares information in bitesize chunks and can be a great way to get your message out there. Twitter can be particularly useful for events management and getting people to talk about the launch of new products, or even the opening of your store. If you are a company based purely online you will need to be much more active than if you owned a physical store, so make sure consider this.

 

Make Your Own Blog

If you have a website selling your products, including a blog can be a great way to inform people about your sector and about your products too. If you sell surfing equipment for example talking about your knowledge of surfing and giving advice about how to care for products will look really good to customers. This makes you look passionate about what you do and shows them that you have knowledge and expertise in your field. A blog can be a space that can engage consumers and keep them clicking too, which is the desired outcome of all your marketing strategies. If you are having difficulty with marketing you can always enlist professional help like Ascend2 for example. Although you don’t want your blog to be too promotional towards your products and services, it is a good avenue through which to advertise yourself. Debating the difference between bike tires that you offer and their benefits for on road and offroad use would be a good use of your blog if you sold products for cycling. The ideas are endless so get writing and think about genuinely engaging posts you would make. What do your customers want to read about?

 

Research Your Competition

When starting any marketing it can be useful to know what other businesses are offering people and thinking about how you can do better. No matter if you are a local high street shop or vast global company you are always going to have competition. Knowing the kinds of deals and services they offer customers can help you build and grow your company, and if there are any gaps in the market make sure you take advantage of them. What are customers saying about their service and their products, how could you do better? Although it can be difficult to identify competition if you are a purely web based company, you need to do your research. This can give your marketing strategies direction and you can modify your online presence accordingly. Do your research if you want to be informed and on top of the competition.

Here are just a few ideas to get you thinking about marketing your company. Although marketing might seem like a difficult task at first, these skills can be learnt like any other. Doing research can never hurt and you should continue to do so to make sure your marketing strategies are up to date and relevant. Whatever your product or company social media and blogs are your best friend. Remember to consider quality over quantity and to not be too overly promotional, not posting lots of spam will also help to keep your customer base.    

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How to Make Your Blog More Engaging to Your Readers

In many ways, setting up and running a blog is easy, and just about anyone can have their site set up in just a few minutes and start posting content. However, although setting up a blog can be easy, getting readers to the site can be more challenging. There are a few ways that you can engage more with current and new readers in an attempt to build your following and create a site that makes you proud.

Create Good Content

If you have done your research on blogging, you will know how important your content is. No matter what your niche may be, you always need to provide something your readers want to know. One of the best ways to do this is to try and find a different spin on an existing topic. Find a popular or trending topic that fits in with your niche and look at it from a new perspective. People are always interested in differing opinion, even if it's controversial, so thinking of a different angle can get you noticed.

Be Visually Appealing

Your blog is the face of you and what you want to say, so make sure it appeals to your readers. Many visitors like to have pictures or video to look at as this is more visually stimulating. However, there are also other ways to get your readers attention. Try adding documents or slides to your posts to reiterate a point or show a trend. There are sites such as DocRaptor that will help you convert these documents without any complications.

Be Helpful to Your Readers

Although your visitors will like to read what you have to say, you can make it even better by offering them a solution to a problem. There may be something within your niche that has always been difficult resolve; this gives you a great opportunity. By thinking about possible solutions, you will be giving people something they haven’t had before. Not only will this be engaging to your readers, but it will also be something they will want to share with others. You might be able to make it your angle, to try and solve those seemingly impossible problems.

Monitor the Trends

Whatever your blog is about, there will always be certain topics within it that are trending, or at least getting a lot of attention. To stay relevant, you need to find out what’s happening in the realm of your blog topic and write about it. For example, if you are a writing a music blog and a new band hits the scene, then you should be writing something about it. Readers will be eager to hear what you think, and it will make your blog relevant.

Social Media

Social media is by far the best way to reach your readers, not only because there are billions of potential people out there, but also because this is where the trending stories are. It is no coincidence that the clear majority of bloggers are hugely active on their social media accounts. They are all trying to gain a greater following and a larger readership. As with your posts, anything you share to social media should have a photo as these posts are more likely to be clicked statistically. You shouldn’t just use social media for sharing your content; you also need to get involved with conversations and get yourself out there. The more people see you, the more likely they are to follow you and then see your blog posts.

Offer Them Something

The promise of free information will often lure visitors to your site. If you can develop a short eBook or perhaps a PDF file with useful information or a ‘how to’ guide, then you will find people eager to read and download it. You need to make it your own and offer them something they cannot get from anywhere else. If you are looking to generate income from your site, then offer the first part for free and then make any subsequent parts available for a fee. If the content is good enough, then it will encourage people to pay for it.

Monitor Your Traffic

Sometimes gaining visitors to your site is a matter of trial and error. You can write something that is amazing, but it will only get a few readers, while something simple gets thousands. To find out what makes your readers happy, you need to analyze your visitors after each post to see how they react to it. You can then start to develop a strategy that you can incorporate into all your posts. Another reason for monitoring your site traffic is so that you can find the perfect time of day to post your content. Depending on where your visitors are located, they will be reading your latest post during their lunch break or when they are at home. By keeping your posting times the same, readers will anticipate it.

Keep Your Layout Simple

Have you ever been on a website that is so cluttered by options that you don’t know where to start? For many readers, seeing a site like this will be enough to put them off wanting to explore. You must keep the design of your site simple yet enticing, use images and buttons but keep the writing to a minimum. Most bloggers like to have their posts on the front page because its easier for the visitors to see it. While this is a good idea, it isn’t essential, if there is something else you want on your front page then do it. You must remember though, that you should make your blog easy to find from any page.

Whatever the reason you write your blog, make sure that you are interested in the subject matter. There is nothing worse than writing on a topic that you don’t like, it will make you demoralized, and this will show in your content. There are plenty of potential readers out there for everyone, so don’t delay.

 

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Why I Stopped Using Facebook

Why I Stopped Using Facebook

If you use Facebook, I’m sure you’ve found yourself scrolling endlessly through feeds. How often have you found yourself scrolling for 10 or 15 minutes without even realizing it?

At first, it’s just a notification. Next thing you know, you’ve seen pictures of somebody’s vacation, some funny cat videos, and that little Billy lost a tooth. Who is little Billy anyways? Must be someone’s nephew. Then you realize it’s time to stop scrolling and get back to work.. but what was it you were working on again?

If you think about it, when was the last time that Facebook improved your productivity? A better question might be to ask, how much time have you wasted using Facebook? Don’t worry. You might not be wasting that much time as compared to the average user. Or you might be a Facebook maniac and not even realize it yet! (probably not).

Major Time Waster

An hour every day. That’s about the average time users spend on Facebook. All of those times checking notifications and getting sucked in really add up. And it’s pretty difficult to track yourself. Minutes seem to fly by while you’re scrolling.

It starts off as a simple notification. That’s the bait. And if you go for the bait, you’re likely to get hooked. That quick look at your phone turns into a few minutes. Those few minutes turn into about 7 hours a week, 28 hours a month, and two weeks a year (on average)! Now here’s where it’s going to get a bit uncomfortable. That amount of time adds up to about 8.4 work weeks. It’s like sitting at a desk working full time for 8 and a half weeks scrolling through Facebook. That’s a lot of time. And this isn’t considering the amount of time it takes to refocus your mind back to work.

Broken Attention

You’ve seen how much time the average Facebook user wastes on the platform alone. But there’s another effect at play here. It’s the amount of time it takes to refocus your mind. Have you ever noticed how long it takes to get that mental momentum back after taking a break on Facebook? It could take 10-15 minutes to get back in the zone. This is a hidden cost of pulling your phone out and scrolling through the app. You think you’ve only wasted 5-10 minutes but in reality, it took you another 10-15 to get your focus back.

It takes time to focus your mind on work. That momentum has to build up for you to get in the zone. And if you’re constantly looking at notifications and scrolling through Facebook every hour or so, you’re downgrading the quality of your work. How much can that cost your business, job, or school career?

Negative Effects

A lot of people have said they feel negative after using Facebook. And a lot of people have talked about the joy of leaving the social network. They talk about it as if a weight has been lifted from their shoulders.

I was reading Harvard Business Review recently and came across an article called A New, More Rigorous Study Confirms: The More You Use Facebook, the Worse You Feel. Doesn’t sound like a very positive article, right? Well, there are some positive takeaways. The study found that having a face-to-face social network in real life has some positive effects on overall well-being. But, on the other hand, Facebook users self-reported some pretty negative side effects of using the social network. The researchers found that liking posts and clicking links were predictors in users feeling negative in the areas of physical health, mental health, and life satisfaction. Researchers can’t pinpoint the exact cause but it may have to do with the way we compare ourselves to other people’s polished profiles and posts.

Deleting the App

I personally could tell that Facebook was draining my time and productivity. It felt like I was wasting hours looking through the feeds and other people’s lives. Look, I’m happy that someone somewhere got married and someone else’s kid lost their tooth. But I don’t need to spend my attention on those things when I should be working. And that’s why I had to get rid of the Facebook app. Now I just post to Facebook via Instagram without getting lost down the rabbit hole.

You might feel better too. Try deleting the app for a week. See if anything changes. Maybe you’ll find that you can accomplish more, have deeper focus, and feel better overall. The only way you’ll know for sure is to test it yourself. I did and it’s working out great for me.

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instagram tips for 2018

Instagram Stories Ads And Other Insta Marketing Secrets For 2018

instagram tips for 2018

 

In the last 5 years, Instagram has turned into a go-to social network for businesses looking to put their names on the map. Companies love to use Instagram because it gives them a chance to connect with their targeted audience. And with more than 500 million daily active users it seems like an easy enough task…or is it?

 

If you plan to use Instagram to promote your business it’s important to stay on top of things. Knowing all the latest trends and statistics, using the right hashtags or when to post are some of the tricks you need to master in order to make this platform your money-making machine.

 

Here, we’ll give you some useful insights and help you uncover the secrets of Instagram marketing that will take your business to a whole new level.

 

1. The story behind Instagram stories

 

In 2017 only 8% of businesses used Instagram story ads as an attempt to engage more customers. Yet, the stats are about to change since 2018 is shaping up to be the year of the Stories. According to statistics whopping 88% of businesses are changing their strategies and focusing more on posting through stories.

 

Using Instagram stories quickly became a huge marketing trend. This relatively new feature released in March 2017 gives you a chance to experiment and see what works best for your business.

 

Still, the most important thing is to create quality content based on clearly established goals and KPI’s. After that, all you need to do is track your success rate through Instagram Stories analytics. Together with impressions and reach you’ll be able to see your Instagram Stories’ exits and replies from the last two weeks. And if you’re interested in generating traffic, try using a third-party tool for counting clicks.

 

2. Start boosting your posts

 

Getting familiar with Instagram advertising is something you’ll have to work on if you want to maintain or acquire high engagement. Luckily for you, it’s not that difficult. All you have to do is boost your posts to your followers. That way you can avoid using Instagram ads and special targeting.  Just take a regular Instagram post and promote it in order to get more likes, impressions and visits. Your post will look like a regular one accept it will have the “sponsored” sign and a call to action button.

 

3. Will Instagram profiles become the new home pages?

 

More and more people are looking for brands on Instagram rather than Google. Instagram profiles are becoming the home pages of the future so it’s really important to focus your attention on Instagram aesthetics as a crucial part of your Instagram marketing strategy.

 

Having a consistent aesthetic flow and a nicely organized color pallet could do wonders for your profile and attract new followers.

 

Aesthetic is essential for companies which base their business on visual appeal. For example, focusing on this type of social media marketing for real estate could make a huge difference when it comes to outshining the competition. There are many available visual Instagram planners which will help your profile really come together resulting in aesthetically pleasing appearance.

 

4. Everyone will shop on Instagram

 

Instagram decided to join forces with Shopify in a form of a new shopping feature integration.

 

This new feature will allow Shopify users to tag their product in a photo along with the name and the price of the product. Customers will be able to do their shopping through Instagram without having to switch to another app.

 

People from Shopify explain that partnering up with Instagram was the next logical step because staying on the same platform will only result in increased number of additional sales. So, if you’re not using Shopify yet, this might be the best time to start.

 

5. It’s all about Instagram analytics

 

If you want to run a successful Instagram campaign you’ll have to get familiar with Instagram analytics. Mastering analytics tools is really important because it will help with constantly changing the Instagram algorithm.

Also, frequently optimizing your content is another crucial factor in generating a high number of impressions and engagement.

And since 2018 seems to be all about Instagram analytics, you can look forward to more advanced versions of the tool not only limited to mobile apps.

 

If you want to be a successful marketer you need to stay on top of your game. This year is huge for Instagram, especially Instagram Stories so make sure you’re amongst the first who’ll use all its potential and put it to good use.

 

 

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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.

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