Let’s safely assume that your business is on social media, but how effectively does your content capture your audience’s attention?
According to wishpond.com, “90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual, which is processed 60,000 times faster in the brain than text.” WHOA! If your social content isn’t visual, you risk losing your following.
Here are a few creative ways you can add visual content to your social profiles to keep your fans excited and engaged:
1. Shareable and relatable photos
Don’t spend too much time hard selling your followers. Consumers can smell a desperate attempt for a sale and as soon as they do, they’ll jump ship. Instead, enrich your social media with visual content that’s relatable and still incorporates your business. A staff photo on a Friday afternoon or a Father’s Day graphic, for example, will do the job and may collect a few extra likes, too. See how we do it on our Facebook.
Wishpond reports, “Businesses that market with infographics grow in traffic an average of 12% more than those who don’t.” If you have 1,000 fans on Facebook, that’s an additional 120 potential new customers, so grab some compelling stats and work with a grade-A designer to mock up some infographics. Here are some prime examples.
3. Shared links thumbnails
You’re most likely linking articles or other website pages to your social stream, but before posting, make sure the link’s thumbnail image is relevant to the post’s title and interesting.
The how-to: When you add a link into a Facebook post, a thumbnail image will auto populate. Using the arrows, you may have the option to choose between multiple. If none work, you can design and upload your own. Remember, Facebook’s specs for shared links thumbnails differ from Timeline pictures. Here’s the size guide.
…And there’s one more statistic we’d like to share with you: “Posts with visuals receive 94% more page visits and engagement than those without” (wishpond). So what are you waiting for?
Great design stands out because it’s transparent, leaves an impression on its audience, and portrays a message.
…And then there are these gems that portray a unique type of message: design gone terribly wrong (compliments of BuzzFeed). Enjoy!
1. This oxymoronic billboard that’s accompanied with grammar errors, too:
2. This not-so-accurate graph:
3. This EURROPEAN misspelling
4. This poor choice of font:
5. And (drumroll please), this bird with 2 mouths:
Having a website puts you in the game, but enhancing the user experience keeps visitors on your site. The time potential customers spend on your website reflects how captivated they are by your content or product(s). For most content-driven websites, keeping traffic is just as vital as creating it.
To enhance the user experience, you’ll need captivating and fun content. Here are a few quick additions that can help:
1. Video content:
Statistics don’t lie: According to WebDam.com, “Visual data is processed 60,000 times faster than text, and videos increase conversions by 86%.” Use free web plugins to incorporate videos into your website’s content.
2. Internal links:
Strategic linking to quality content and subpages are great ways to keep (and direct) traffic, especially from your homepage. Feature those links on your website’s blog or news section to create a quick and direct connection.
3. New imagery/design:
Staying current and fresh can be accomplished by making tweaks and updates to your site’s design and look. The most noticeable place to do this will be on your homepage’s rotating slider—add a new image each month to keep visitors hungry for more.
Need help keeping your visitors’ attention? We have the answers. Contact us today.
The search engine optimization landscape is always evolving. Google and Bing are constantly updating their algorithms to help people get the information they want.
The search engines are getting smarter and smarter. Gaming the system is not a long-term option and is getting less and less possible: online press releases have been devalued, guest blogging has gotten sites penalized, and content sharing services have been blacklisted.
Who wants to risk get delisted by Google? Not you.
Where does that leave your small business and search engine optimization?
In the position to set yourself apart from your competition by becoming an authority in your niche. Here are a few ways you can do that:
1. Create and share valuable content:
Write content that’s specific and relevant to YOUR customer. Make the content useful and not sales-oriented. Share it on social media, via email, shout it from the rooftops.
2. Grow links to your site:
Take advantage of the associations and organizations that you’re a member of. Many associations will let you add your link to an online profile, write an article for their email newsletters or websites, or share news online. Create a starter outreach list with your professional organizations, your alma mater, and local Chamber of Commerce.
3. Own your user review profiles:
Yelp and Google Places are just two of the sites where customers can review businesses. Be sure you have ownership of your listings on these two platforms and fill them out completely – images, business description, website address, hours of operation, everything. Find the review sites that are right for your niche. For example, AngiesList.com is terrific for services and TripAdvisor is important for hospitality. Once you have your account, you have the ability to respond to reviews and control (and correct) the information being shared.
These three steps can take to help grow the authority of your small business website and help your search engine optimization. Questions? Ask them in the comments.
Effective Friday, April 25, we’ll be at our new, larger location at 3305 W. Burbank Blvd., Burbank, CA 91505!
Also, our office will be closed on April 25 due to the move, re-opening the following Monday.
Unless you’ve been living under a digital rock for the past week, you’ve most likely heard about the Heartbleed bug. Slews of headlines and articles have popped up on almost every major reporting site since then.
Just how bad is this bug? It’s been dubbed “one of the biggest, most widespread vulnerabilities in the history of the modern web” (mashable.com), if that helps measure the significance of its threat.
So, what is Heartbleed? We’ll start at the top…
When you send private information, like your credit card number, to another person or server, it’s protected, a.k.a. encrypted. Encryption is a type of secret language between you and that server and the Internet has developed strict protocols to handle this system of security.
These protocols also have solutions so tons of web and email services, instant messengers, routers and apps can implement and use them. One of those solutions is referred to as OpenSSL (where the Heartbleed vulnerability lies);, according to Mashable, “[it] runs on 66% of the web.” That’s a LOT of real estate. Yikes!
Heartbleed, at its core, is the hole in the secret language/keys between you and the server, and allows a hacker to access those secret keys, discretely eavesdrop on your online conversations and save your private information. Scary, right?
So, how do you protect yourself from this threat? Well, it’s complicated and it’s a lot more technical than the average Internet user can/should understand. You can start, however, by changing your passwords for the sites that were affected by Heartbleed.
We’ve created a checklist for you here:
Last week, I went to the Search Marketing Expo and Conference in San Jose. This is probably the most important SEO conference in the nation, and one attended by important leaders in search marketing from Google, Bing, and other companies.
A few key takeaways:
1. Link building is shifting to link earning
Google has publicly said that most link-building tactics will not help your search rankings. Gone are the days of blog comment linking, empty press release linking and guest blogging. These tactics can harm your search rankings rather than help. Your links now need to be earned. If you create and share valuable content, others will share it and link to it. You can guest blog – if you are blogging on a credible site that has relevancy to your blog topic.
GET THIS: Google tested their algorithm not including links and the results weren’t very good. So links will continue to matter for the foreseeable future but reputation needs to be earned.
2. Exact phrase matching for SEO is a thing of the past
Now that Google no longer provides search keyword data for non-paid search and Yahoo is starting not to provide this data, you don’t have enough info to see what searches are driving your traffic. Now you need to look at your landing page – a page that is optimized for a specific service, product, or keyword. You can see when traffic directly arrives on that page – where that visitor goes and what they do.
You can make some assumptions as to what they searched for in order to arrive on that page. If a landing page is getting the results you want, create and share more content about that product, service or keyword.
3. Invest in strategy, not tactics
Think about Google’s intent. Does your strategy match Google’s intent of providing relevant searches? Be the brand that people come to for information. Share relevant, shareable experiences. A content marketing strategy is key.
Rather than focusing on keywords, focus on your audience: who they are, and what they want.
4. Google+ is important
You and your brand must be on Google+ and all of your Google products need to be connected. Although Google says +1s don’t currently affect public Google search rankings, they do if it’s with someone you are connected with on Google+.
Google is committed to Google+ . You should get involved in strong social circles on Google+ and grow your bio there.
HINT: Add links in your bio on your blog and website to your Google+ profile.
The SEO landscape is evolving. Google and Bing want to provide results that help their searchers. If your brand and content provide value, then you will rank well. If you try to game the system, there are consequences. Need help? Have questions? Ask me.
It’s easy to see the effects hashtags have on social media and modern-day pop culture. In fact, hashtags can be found everywhere, including on t-shirts, The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon and, as of recently, your Facebook posts.
When it comes to using hashtags in your personal Facebook posts, you’re good to go — hashtag to your heart’s content. According to new research found on socialbakers.com, however, overusing hashtags can turn your fans and followers off and drop your posts’ precious interaction rates.
When you’re working hard to build a social reputation for your brand or company, you can’t afford to sacrifice interaction. See the chart below to see just how detrimental over-hashtagging can be.
While 1-2 hashtags averaged at about 600 interactions per post for this sample/theoretical company, using 10+ hashtags dropped a post’s interaction by a whopping 68%!
Point of the story: hashtags are fun and trendy and you can use them, but do so sparingly, because #too #much #of #a #good #thing #can #kill… your interaction rates.
With YouTube site visits consistently breaking records and the release of micro-videos going viral across social platforms, marketing your business via video has never been easier, more accessible and (most importantly) more shareable than ever.
Here are our 4 favorite types of videos you can utilize to make a big splash on YouTube:
- Animate your infographics
Infographics are a fun way to introduce yourself to the world. Use the infographic to tell people who you are and what you do, and to share data or facts. Animated infographics like digital cartoons are super trendy right now, too.
- Make a compelling demo
Watching a well-executed demo video is like test-driving a car — they can teach your customers how to operate or install a product or show off certain features. A compelling demo, like GoPro HERO3’s, should make your product or service seem unique and desirable, so don’t hold back!
- Let your happy customers speak
Create a video chock-full of customer testimonials by asking your favorites to chat about their positive experiences on camera. Ask them to talk about the quality of your products or services and how your customer care makes them feel. Most importantly, however, keep it honest and genuine.
- Go behind the scenes
You might think your “behind-the-scenes” show will lack luster – but have you watched reality TV lately? People are interested in everything. So show people what’s going on with you and your business, and become your own reality star. People can’t get enough of how things really work.
Call us today to get your video rolling.
U.S. consumer spending is up. So is consumer confidence. And so is business investment. And no less a sensible sage than Warren Buffett says that “the mother lode of opportunities resides in the U.S.”
We’re seeing the same positive trend here, and with clients. One longtime client who really struggled during the recession told us last week that last month was up 30% over the same month last year. Another client’s revenues have grown 400% over last year. And now that the snow that choked much of the country is clearing, watch the economy soar.
So if your sales aren’t up, if you’re not yet taking advantage of the turnaround in the economy, we have to wonder why. Because others (your competitors?) are already getting primed. With new marketing and new sales initiatives aimed at growing their crops while the sun is shining.