Blog

May 2018

Viewing posts from May , 2018

5 Essential Digital Marketing Solutions to Help Drive Traffic

Digital advertising expenditures reached 4.8 billion CAD in 2016.

In fact, the digital world is only expanding. As time goes on, your digital marketing strategies will only become more essential to your business.

Think of it this way; digital marketing strategies are the new billboards of the world. Here are 8 essential digital marketing solutions to drive traffic to your business today.

1) Make Search Engine Optimization Your Friend

Search Engine Optimization commonly referred to as ‘SEO’, is essential for driving organic traffic to your website. By literally “optimizing” your site to Google’s ranking and sorting preferences, you’ll be able to increase your traffic and audience reach.

Readability

You’ll want to start by making your website readable and easy to understand. Aim for a reading level of grade 8 or below, unless you’re offering a technical or specialized product or service. Be sure that any specific services you offer, especially ones related to a specialty industry, are easily understood by visitors.

Consumers come to you for a service or product that they cannot or don’t have the time to complete themselves. Aim your copy at this fact, reminding visitors why your brand is the best choice.

Using Keywords

Another area of SEO that is important to address is the use of keywords. You’ll want to come up with a list of keywords and phrases related to your website and business. Next, to start ranking for these words on Google and other search engines, you’ll want to ensure use of these words throughout your website.

Be careful of “overstuffing” keywords. Use them in-context and clearly to best show search engines the relevance and high-quality content your website provides.

There’s a lot more to SEO than these few tips. Take some time to delve into more SEO tactics for your website or partner with SEO experts to improve your results.

2) Connect with News Giants

While optimizing your own website is essential to driving traffic, you can’t do it alone. Search engines prefer websites to be “backed” by other known and trusted websites.

When trusted websites link back to your website, search engines learn to trust your website a little more. This is known as landing backlinks! While there are many unethical ways to land backlinks, that doesn’t mean backlinks themselves are bad.

Aim to partner with journalists, other brands, and bloggers to be featured and linked to from their platforms. By creating media pitches and news releases, you can make your company and services easily accessible.

Remember that these parties are often in need of content to publish, and your brand could be the next big post for them.

3) Social Media: Your Free Consumer Contact

Still today, brands are increasingly using social media as a tactic to connect with buyers. In addition to time-specific promotions, keeping a consistent schedule of regular content keeps your brand present in the mind of your target audiences.

People are receptive to brands on social media and brands continue to expand their presence on these sites. By 2015, over 90 percent of Canadian marketers promoted their brand’s presence on Facebook.

Social media has become an increasingly popular way for consumers and potential buyers to keep up with and follow their favourite brands and companies.

As far as traffic goes, traffic from social media sites is second only to organic search traffic from SEO. With easy link-sharing, social media pairs audience contact with unlimited sharability.

4) Have A Clear-Cut Branding Strategy

It’s next to impossible to come up with an effective solution without a clear-cut branding strategy. What kind of business do you have? How do you want to brand it? Be sure to determine whether you want a personal or corporate brand to be the backbone of your business.

But what’s the difference? A personal branding strategy relies on your own identity and individuality. Products and services are often signed with your name, and you’re the main, if not only, point of contact. This is a popular strategy for bloggers and consultants.

A corporate branding strategy, however, creates a brand around a third-party company name. This is great for partnerships or corporations with multiple shareholders.

5) Create a Consumer Persona

Create an ideal target persona to better orient your content and pitches. Also known as a target audience persona, using targeted tactics can increase website traffic by appealing to someone personally.

You’ll want to be as specific as possible when creating this persona. Know all of their details: their gender, likes, dislikes, age, income, and as much as possible about their lifestyle. Then, figure out how your business’s products, services, or blog fit into that lifestyle.

Lastly, explore the best options for reaching that target persona. Use market research and current consumer surveys to see what mediums, websites, stores, and brands your target public is loyal to.

Next, aim your following promotion toward those mediums and channels. That’s where you’ll want to focus your time and energy.

Consult the Experts for Digital Marketing Solutions

Working on your own in-house digital marketing solutions and goals are a must. But sometimes, consulting an expert is just what you need to get your business on the right track.

Hiring a Brand and Search Engine Marketing agency can give you the time flexibility and expertise you need to drive real traffic and customers. At the very least, exploring different agency options can give you background information essential to crafting your own solutions.

Ready to start researching digital marketing agency options? Here’s what to consider when exploring an agency option.

How Online Reviews Affect Your Calgary Business: What You Need to Know

Unless your business is one of the 437 large corporations in Alberta, chances are, you own and operate a small business. After all, 165,792 small businesses — accounting for 97.92% of all businesses in the province — call it home. For reference, there are also 3,076 medium-size enterprises here.

Although this doesn’t mean you compete with all of them, it should tell you that competition is tough and you need to take advantage of online reviews. Why? For one, because as many as 88% of consumers put trust on these reviews as they do on personal recommendations.

This is only one of the many other statistics highlighting the importance and impact of online business reviews. Worry not, as we’ll share with you the most important in this post, together with strategies on how to make these reviews work for, and not against, you.

What Online Reviews Are All About

To understand how big an impact online reviews have on your audience and your brand, you first need to grasp what these comments or testimonials are all about.

At their core, these reviews are the digital version of “word of mouth”. They’re much like referrals, recommendations, and complaints. The only difference is they’re online.

These user reviews may be as short as one sentence, even a single word. But they can already make or break potential sales a lot of the time.

Think of how a word as simple as “amazing” or “awesome” can make the consumer feel. Reading any of these words, won’t it make you feel assured about a product or a service? In all likelihood, it will, and it may just be the deal-breaker for you to whip your credit card out.

On the other hand, reading something like “WORST!” or “NEVER BUYING AGAIN!” can make anyone close their tab… only to open a new one to check out similar products from other brands.

There’s so much power that consumers place in both bad and good reviews. This is one of the reasons studies found that four-fifths of consumers conduct online research before shelling out money on a product or service. Because they know their research will yield reviews, which they can use to gauge whether they’ll push through with the purchase or not.

The Modern Path Word of Mouth Takes

Consider this: In the United States, more than 80% of consumers first ask for business referrals and recommendations prior to making any buying decision. The same goes true for Canadians. In fact, we Canucks are more trusting, particularly of our news media.

As such, when they see a recommendation online, they’re more likely to give that product or service a try. On the other hand, if they read something bad about a brand, chances are, they’ll keep away from its offers.

Search Engines and Product/Service Reviews: The Connection

More than half of consumers (60%) use a search engine to look up products or services. And before finalizing their decision, 61% will first find out what others have to say.

Now, add to that the fact that 89.9% of Canada’s population use the Internet. From here, you can already see how important it is for your brand to appear online. And of course, have people say positive things about it.

Appearing on search engines means utilizing strategies like search engine optimization, local SEO in particular, as well as search engine marketing. Combine this with efficiently-managed online reviews, and you’ll see a considerable difference in your sales. And we mean an increase in sales and revenues.

The keyword here is “efficiently-managed,” because if you ignore the negative reviews and respond only to the good ones, your entire SEO campaign will suffer. In fact, your brand will take a hit, since consumers will think that you don’t value every customer experience and feedback. As hard as it is to respond to bad reviews, they’re actually those that need a prompter response to.

Here’s a quick and dirty tip: If you see a 3 or 4-star review, don’t just thank the person for leaving the review, ask them how you could have made it a 5-star and address the issue so that you can get that 5-star rating! How you solve problems is often just as important, or more important, than a primary interaction.

In a nutshell, active monitoring and quick response to reviews help you influence your audience’s buying decisions. From here, you can then transform your online reputation into an invaluable marketing and loyalty-retaining asset.

Reviews Shouldn’t Scare You

No matter how amazing your products and/or services are, you’ll always encounter hard-to-please customers. Since you can’t please everyone, you always have to be on your toes when it comes to negative reviews.

That’s totally fine though! Balanced reviews can also do wonders in increasing the legitimacy of your business. Just think of the age-old adage “too good to be true.”

You need to practice utmost consistency in managing your reviews though. Curating emphatic responses to your business reviews will showcase how you care about your customers. It’ll let both existing and potential clients know that you value their feedback.

Of course, you want to always strive hard to deliver excellent products and services, as this keeps them negative reviews at bay in the first place. With good reviews significantly outweighing the bad ones, your prospective customers will find it easier to locate your business.

Don’t Forget to Say Thank You To Everyone

Here’s one last thing to keep in mind: 83% of satisfied customers say they are willing to provide referrals. At the end of the day though, only 29% of them do. So why not increase their likelihood of doing so?

With a simple display of gratitude (yes, even just a thank you!) can already increase your chances of having customers recommend you. This also means an increased likelihood of them leaving you good online reviews. Rewards — like points, discounts, and freebies — can also help you raise your chances of getting better reviews.

In a nutshell, every customer transaction is an opportunity to get positive reviews. So, take advantage of that and make each customer feel that you are worthy of good reviews.

Want more articles like this that’ll help you improve your online reputation? Then please feel free to head to our blog! Thank you 😉