Social media is part of your business marketing and networking strategy. Use this concise social media checklist from The Whole Brain Group to help focus your social media efforts. The only change I would recommend is posting THREE times a day on Facebook to help keep the interaction going.
Yep, that is exactly how I feel when I get caught up in all the technical bells and whistles involved in online marketing today. While a good looking website that is easy to navigate is important, it is not the MOST important aspect of marketing. What is WRITTEN in the website is most important. That means content. The same is true for article marketing, Facebook, Twitter, blogging, etc. And today, content also includes images along with the text.
Copyblogger did a great job of visually sharing how, over the years, nothing has changed. In online marketing, it’s the content, stupid . . .
If you are in the process of developing or improving the website for your business, then you’ve probably heard the phrase, “content is king.” However, do you understand exactly why your website’s content is so imperative to its success? Here are five reasons why creating amazing content for your website is imperative to its success online.
Conveys a clear message.
This may seem obvious, but many people miss the boat on the concept of getting a message across. It’s not enough to attract attention with a catchy slogan or a slick story. When it comes down to it, those are just words that must be backed up with clear meaning about the purpose and scope of your site. Good content will actually inform your potential customers about your business, and assure them they can count on your website (and eventually your business) to provide what they are looking for.
High quality content will help you establish your voice in the industry. When you provide valuable information in an effective way, you automatically have an air of authority with your site visitors. This type of credibility can help make you an online leader in your industry.
Keeps people coming back for more.
One of the most important jobs your website has is to mediate an ongoing relationship between you and your site visitors. Informative, entertaining, and relevant web page content will keep your visitors engaged on the page for longer and thus reduce their bounce rate (another Google search engine measure). It will also inspire them to check in periodically for new content. Quality or sticky content is a very effective way for you to stay in touch with your audience and develop lasting relationships. Returning website visitors goes a long way in keeping your brand at the top of the minds of your potential customers.
Encourages better search engine optimization (SEO)
Search engine optimization is a term used for the process of making your website visible and relevant to search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo. Quality SEO is how people will naturally find your website when they search the web for a term,, keyword, or phrase related to your business product or service. Part of SEO is weaving your keywords or phrases into your website content . More and more, search engines are primarily looking for quality content to provide their searchers. By meeting that need, you’ll be more likely to be better ranked in the search engines for your keywords or phrases.
Incites customer action
Good web content includes a strong call to action inviting your website visitors to engage even more. Additionally, a call to action will instruct your visitors what you desire for them to do next. A call to action can be a
- phone number to call,
- an email form to fill out, or
- any action driving your clients closer to their next purchase from your business.
A call to action is easy to neglect in your content. When a visitor takes the time to read your excellent content, they are often looking for a way to contact you. The great value of an effective call to action is a traceable metric to determine the success of your website content in producing more more leads or foot traffic into your business.
When it comes to building your brand, your website is one of your most powerful marketing tools. Make sure you get the best of the best by contacting the experienced professionals at Premier Design Website to handle all of your web design needs. You can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org
When starting a new business, it may be difficult to know where to start with your marketing and branding. Best bet is to start with a logo. As a business owner, you are responsible for marketing your business in a way that will increase your bottom line and protect your future feasibility. Your business branding is tantamount to your success, as it is what etches your product or service into the minds of existing and potential customers over the long haul. When it comes to branding, there is perhaps no more important factor than your business logo. What is the significance of a logo? Read on to find out.
Why a logo?
Studies show that people are more responsive to, and have a much easier time remembering, images (as opposed to text). Think of your business logo as your business name, niche, slogan, mission statement, product/service, target market, and values –distilled down to their most direct and succinct form and then combined into a singular image. Thus the power your logo has to speak for your business.
What’s in a logo?
When it comes to choosing a logo design, you will find (if you are doing it right) that you face a weighty task that will take a considerable amount of research, time, and mental energy. The idea of an effective logo is to pack a punch in the simplest way possible, and every aspect of your logo image counts. In order to leave your audience with the lasting impression you intend, you must make the right choices in regards to font, color, spacing, graphics, and text.
Your logo is uniquely yours.
As you are now familiar with the power and composition of a business logo, it should be easy to see that the significance of your logo lies in the fact that it is completely unique to your business. It is your fingerprint, per se, and the indelible image your business will leave on the minds of all who see it.
Who should your logo affect?
A great logo design is one that speaks directly to your target market. Think about it this way: a logo for a childcare service is not exactly going to be effective at earning you more business if it is most appealing to senior citizens. Your logo has the ability to draw attention from very specific segments of the population, and a well-thought out and designed logo can literally attract the people who are most likely to purchase your product or service.
A lot goes into building your brand, and your business logo is one of your most powerful branding tools. Don’t skimp when it comes to creating, growing, and strengthening your brand.
Contact the experienced professionals at Premier Design Websites to handle all of your logo design needs.
Marketing your blog is not all that hard to do. However if you want your blog to do well, you have to be persistent. You cannot just make a post and forget about it. I know this because I’ve done it in years past. By continually updating and marketing your blog, it can become popular and attract a strong following. There are some great ways for effective blogging techniques.
Be a Reporter
Interviewing people and posting it on your blog is an excellent way to market it. Just be sure the people you interview pertain to the market or niche of your blog. Look for the movers, the shakers, the innovators. You want all of your posts to be relevant, including any interviews you might do. For example, if your blog market was bathroom remodels, and you did an interview with the owner of Kohler faucets; that would definitely pertain to your market. Interviews can be written, video, audio or all of the above. Be sure to ask your interviewee to add a link back to your blog post to their own blog or website. It is a win-win for both you and the interviewee.
Share the Latest News
If you hear any news on the market of your blog, be sure that you post it. Everyone loves news. Many readers are looking for a singular source for the latest information about your niche or market. With as quickly as information is changing and available online, sharing the latest with your reader is a terrific way to gather more readers as well as serve your current reader community.
You Could Be a Winner
Contests are another way you may effectively market your blog. Having contests on various things is a lot of fun. Get creative. Contest provide another pull to keep your readers coming back. Everyone loves to win things. You can also make the prizes you are giving away relevant to the market you are promoting on your blog.
Be Your Own Unique Self
While good content is something that you will need for your blog, you also want to ensure that it is original content as well. You cannot produce a blog with something that is copied and which you do not own the rights. Plagiarism will get you in trouble with Google as well as the person who originally wrote the content. Be sure your content is uniquely yours without duplication elsewhere.
Be My Guest
Guest blogging offers you an opportunity to share your knowledge about your niche outside your blog while draw a new group of readers back for more. Select blogs in the same market or niche or even in a related area. If you contact the owner with a few pre-written blog posts, they have can quickly access if you are a match for their audience. You can also consider inviting guest bloggers to your own blog. Guests bloggers can offer different flavor or additional dimension you had not considered. Guest bloggers are a great way to keep your blog fresh.
Blogging marketing is all about persistence and uniqueness. These five techniques are great tools to apply to your blog and increase your popularity with your readership. However, you may have thought of some additional methods. In the comment area below, chat about what you would add or change about this list?
Twitter used to be all about short, sweet phrases. Then they added pictures. At last they have joined the mobile age with their new website interface.
The biggest changes were the addition of header photo (think Facebook cover image and the Google+ cover photo). The new Twitter Header Photo is a great way to share an image of who you are. Thus far, there are no limitations to what can be included on the Twitter Header Photo (unlike the tight restrictions on the Facebook cover image).
While Twitter moved around the entire website look, the shift for of the pictures to above the fold or further up on the left side of the page. the new placements gives the Twitter images a more user friendly location and just plain easier to see.
As with anything new, there are tips and tricks. To help you out, I’ve put together a quick tutorial video to help you get your Twitter Header Photo updated.
A standard setup with WordPress will set the intial user to be called ADMIN. While this is convenient to remember, especially if you have more than one blog, it is an unsafe security practice. When someone wants to hack your blog, one of the first vulnerabilities they look for is to see if you are using the ADMIN user. Thus the only thing the hacker has left to figure out is your password.
Don’t make it easy for hackers. Setup a more complex user (that you can still remember) and replace the admin user all together.
- Log into your WordPress account and Click on ADD NEW USERS
- Create a new user with the a strong username (letters and numbers at least) and select the ROLE of ADMINISTRATOR.
- Click on ALL USERS
Here you will see the list of all the users on the account including ADMIN. If you have been blogging or adding to your WordPress website for awhile, you’ll notice a number greater than ZERO under the POSTS column. If the number is ZERO, you can skip to STEP 8 Otherwise you will need to move those posts to another USer or they could be deleted when you delete the ADMIN user.
- To access the posts by ADMIN user CLICK on the number in the Posts Column (in this case it is the number 13).
- Now you can see what posts will need updated to a new USER. Hover over the title of the post and the edit options will appear. Click on QUICK EDIT.
- Under AUTHOR, change from ADMIN to another user. Click on the blue UPDATE to save changes.
- Continue this process until all the posts are changed over to the new USER. You can confirm this by going back to ALL USERS
- In addition, you’ll also want to do this for the pages. Simply go to ALL PAGES and continue with the QUICK EDITS
- Log out of your WordPress Blog or Website.
- Log back in user the NEW USER NAME (do not log in again under ADMIN)
- Click on ALL USERS. Select the ADMIN user. Click on DELETE.
- Be sure to click on ATTRIBUTE ALL POSTS and LINKS to: and select a different user. This will assure that anything you may have missed will be attributed to the new user. Click on CONFIRM DELETION.
- Now your ADMIN user is deleted and your blog or website is one step more secure from hackers.
Now that we have one security issue resolved. Your WordPress blog or website is better protected from those nasty hackers.
Do you have others? Comment below on your own security concerns as well as how this worked for you.
In June 2012, Google finally announced and implemented its highly anticipated switch from Google Pages to Google+ Local and the implications for what this means for your business has dire consequences. It is vital that you understand the changes and begin to take advantage of Google + Local to boost your business before your competition does so. Fortunately, we have lined up a few innovative strategies for you in this article.
Google Pages to Google+ Local
Chances are if you’re reading this, you already have a Google Page for your business (if you don’t, you really need to go set one up right now). What this switch has done is basically place a “Local” tab on the left hand side of user’s browsers which allows them to click and instantly see any restaurants and businesses in their immediate area. Further, these pages are ranked in order of review scores with a special weight given to a user’s friends and family’s ratings.
Now, with just one listing, your business will be found across Google searches, maps, mobile apps and Google+. Plus, your customers can now review your establishment and recommend it much easier.
And this is such a vital switch because studies show that on average, 50% of all searches for businesses and restaurants are coming from mobile phones. That means that you could potentially be missing out on half of your customers if you aren’t taking advantage of Google+ Local. And with the mobile trend only continuing towards more and more people having iPhones, tablets and androids, the percentages of mobile app searches are only going to rise in the next few years.
But perhaps the biggest feature here is that these Google+ Local pages are being indexed. This means users will be able to find them on regular Google searches as well, so your chances of being found greatly increase…if you are getting customer ratings that is.
So What Should You Do?
Get a Google Business Page if you don’t already have one or, more importantly, claim the Google+ Local page ALREADY ready and waiting for you! Then, take advantage of the new page building features that Google is allowing with Local.
- Post more pictures
- Manage your profile with the new streamlined look and keep it lively
- Host “hangouts” at your restaurant to boost attendance
- Host more updates for increased interaction to stay fresh in customer’s minds
- MOST IMPORTANTLY: GET REVIEWS
Why Getting Reviews is Essential
This last point is so vital because your business will now be found by digital word of mouth. The more people are talking good about you, the better off your business will be. Seems simple right? But the implications are much greater: because of the indexing, your ratings will be out there for all to see for all time with the click of a button.
But beware, Google wants the reviews to be genuine. You’ll want customers to enter their reviews from home (or different internet addresses – not just your business location). Reviews also require a Google+ account.
Don’t dismiss the Google+Local pages as another “waste of time” online marketing charade. Google is continuing to take steps to place greater and greater emphasis on these pages in their search results. Be sure to claim or develop your page before your competitors do to get a leg up on this important local online marketing tool.
While email is still the life blood of communications in our social media driven world, there are just times when files are too big to share via email. As a website designer, I have been running into this challenge for years. It is frustrating for my clients to send one image at a time because that is the best their email will do. Or worse they send all the images, but the are downsized beyond recognition or usefulness.
Welcome to www.dropbox.com to safe the day and allow files to be shared between computers as well as online. After you register and install Dropbox, here’s a quick tutorial on how to share folders with others.
Once again, one of my clients was getting the XML space error with the RSS Feed and Google Feedburner. Seems like this happens every other time WordPress upgrades.
Here is an example of the error message
The URL does not appear to reference a valid XML file. We encountered the following problem: Error on line 2: The processing instruction target matching “[xX][mM][lL]” is not allowed.
To fix it we discovered a few new ideas at http://validator.w3.org/feed/docs/error/WPBlankLine.html
First, make sure the there is no ?> at the end of any <?PHP phrases (even if it is at the end of the file).
Next delete all extra lines at the end of the file.
Most significantly, error stopped after fixing the /feed/ file