Archive for Internet

How Not to let Today’s Marketing Technology Drive You Crazy

Let’s face it, business owners, Marketing Technology (or MarTech to the techie folks) can get out of hand. What happened to the days when putting your shingle outside your store and an ad in the Yellow Pages (remember those?) was enough?

Take a look at the infographic depicting all the marketing technology choices out there in 2016:

You can click on it to view a larger image, but don’t go cross-eyed trying to make sense out of it.

How not to let today's marketing technology drive you crazyThis goes to show you the ridiculous amount of marketing technology choices out there.

You can’t be on all the networks all the time!
It’s impossible!

Here are 10 Logical Steps You Need to Follow to keep Yourself Sane in this crazy MarTech world.

  1. How not to let today's marketing technology drive you crazyClearly Define Your Target Marketing Niches – You can have more than one target market! But you MUST identify them. Start with this FREE Workbook.
  2. Do some research on your target, which social networks they use most often and figure out the best way to reach them. Create personas for each niche.
  3. Get to know your target audience. What do they like or don’t like? What are they looking for? How can your product or service make their lives better, easier, more fun, etc.
  4. Get to know the networks. Each one has its own culture. What works on Twitter doesn’t work on LinkedIn. Do you even have to be on Snapchat?
  5. Make a plan. Brainstorm with your team or a mentor. Work out some strategies on how to engage your target audience on the social networks. You don’t have to be on all the networks! Focus on the ones that your target market frequents the most.
  6. Make a content calendar. What are you going to blog about? What does your target audience need to know that will make their lives better…. etc.? (What’s in it for them?)
  7. Optimize EVERYTHING. Each and every description, about section, bio, web page and blog post must be optimized not just for Google, but for the powerful internal search engines that each network has.
  8. The first step towards getting somewhereTake time to learn. You can never waste your time learning how to do something better and more efficiently.
  9. Use it or lose it. Apply what you learn right away so you don’t forget it. Don’t be afraid to wander around Facebook or LinkedIn even Twitter and Google+. You’ll get faster and savvier, the more you participate and engage.
  10. Have confidence. As you learn how to properly and effectively use the social media networks to engage with your target; as you get more comfortable creating the content that your target audience wants to see, you will feel more confident with your marketing efforts and you’ll also start seeing results.

Learning

That’s why I created Your Social Savvy Solution Members Only. It’s where you can go and get all the knowledge that you need, in a logical progression, to become the confident, savvy marketer so you can….

  • Drive traffic to your website
  • Generate more leads
  • Grow a following
  • Become an influencer
  • Increase sales
  • Get on the first page of Google
  • Be more effective

What are you waiting for? Special Introductory Price…. Learn More….

Your Social Savvy Solution Members Only

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That was then, this is now: The New Rules of Effective Marketing

What is “Effective Marketing”?

One thing for sure is that Marketing today isn’t like it used to be! People don’t want to be interrupted by ads or commercials. They’ll search for what they want when they want it. That being said, you need to be found when a potential customer is looking for what you have to offer.

the new rules of Marketing & PR

[Amazon Affiliate Link]

In his bestselling book, The New Rules of Marketing & PR, [Amazon affiliate link], David Meerman Scott lists the old-fashioned ways of marketing. They don’t work unless you have lots of money to spend and today’s effective marketing – what actually does work.

The Old Rules of Marketing

  • Marketing simply meant advertising (and branding). And sometimes even sales.
  • Advertising needed to appeal to the masses.
  • Advertising relied on interrupting people to get them to pay attention to a message.
  • Old-fashioned advertising was a 1-way communication: company to consumer.
  • Advertising was exclusively about selling products.
  • Advertising was based on campaigns that had a limited life.
  • Creativity was deemed the most important component of advertising.
  • It was more important for the ad agency to win advertising awards than for the client to win new customers.
  • Advertising and PR were separate disciplines run by different people with separate goals, strategies and measurement criteria.

The New Rules of Effective Marketing and PR

  • Marketing is much more than just advertising.
  • PR is for more than just a mainstream media audience.
  • You are what you publish.
  • Book your free 30-minute phone consultPeople want authenticity, not spin (or hype).
  • People want participation, not propaganda.
  • Instead of causing a 1-way interruption, marketing is about delivering content at just the precise moment your audience needs it.
  • PR is not about your boss seeing your company on TV. It’s about your buyers seeing your company on the Internet.
  • Marketing is not about an agency winning awards. It’s about your organization winning business.
  • The Internet has made public relations public again, after years of almost exclusive focus on media.
  • Companies must drive people into the purchasing process with great online content.
  • Blogs, online video, e-books, news releases and other forms of online content let organizations communicate directly with buyers in a form they appreciate.
  • Buyers want information in language they understand, not gobbledy-gook-laden jargon.
  • Social networks like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn allow people all over the world to share content and connect with people and companies they do business with.
  • In our always-on world, buyers expect instant 24/7 communications.
  • On the web, the lines between marketing and PR (and sales and service, too) have blurred.

Given all of the above, YOU as a business owner, needs to understand today’s marketing. If you are trying to attract new business, then you need to be marketing. Marketing is as essential as accounting for every business. No need to be overwhelmed by social media marketing!The problem is that the average small business owner is not a marketer, just like they’re not an accountant. (Unless you are an accountant, then you’re definitely not an expert marketer! It’s a left-brain vs. right-brain thing. Believe me, being a creative person, I hate accounting, that’s why I outsource that.)

So, what’s a small business owner to do?

Get Social Savvy!

I’ve designed my resources and classes so that the anyone can easily learn how to properly and effectively using the free tools that social media provides. Each resource and class goes in a simple, natural, logical progression. You learn not just how to do it, but comprehend why you need to do it. You also learn how to measure your efforts so you can see what’s working and not working. This allows you to adjust your strategies and tactics based on the data and be more effective.

I’ve used the word “effective” a lot because, what’s the use in being on social media, if you’re not being effective? If you’re not getting results?

It’s one thing to post on Facebook, but it’s totally different to market on Facebook.

The Social Media Success Startup Pack gets you thinking about…

  • defining your target market
  • where and how to find data and research on your target so you know where and how to talk to them
  • all aspects of branding including the psychology of color
  • learning the lingo of online marketing so you don’t feel like a tourist in a foreign country
  • planning your strategy and tactical marketing

Then, there’s the Social Media Marketing Boot Camp, which covers blogging and the basics of the social networks. (Boot Camp 102 is coming soon!)

Imagine amazing your competition by getting on top of them in Google search and leaving them in the dust!

Isn’t it about time you got Social Savvy? Start here!

Make 2017 Your Best Year Ever!

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Does Your Website have what it Takes to be Successful? [Infographic]

With over 1 billion websites on the Internet and over 2 billion users, having your website stand out among the crowd is a challenge.

  • 89% of customers search the web before making a purchase
  • 60% of people go to the brand or product website to find relevant information
  • 75% of users admit they decide on a company’s credibility based on its website design

In other words, if your target market enters a search term in the Google search box,

  1. Your site better come up on the first page.
  2. Have sufficient information so that a potential customer could make a buying decision.
  3. Be visually appealing, easy to navigate, branded well, updated and functional.

You have 2.6 seconds that it takes a user’s eye to land on the website’s area that influences his or her first impression.

94% of First Impressions are Design-Related

This infographic courtesy of Crucial:

Does your website have what it takes to be successful? [Infographic]

Look at your website from the eyes of your potential target market. Step back. Look at it objectively. If you were your target, would you convert? (Buy, sign-up, request more info, etc.) If you feel that you should rebrand, reconsider your target, or even if you’re just starting out and you’re in the process of designing your website, then the Social Media Success Pack is for you!

Maybe your site is meets all the design criteria and you just need to drive more traffic to your site. What are you doing?

  1. Are you blogging at least once a week?
  2. Do you post and participate on social media daily?

If you’re not, then you need to get your act together. That’s what’s needed to drive traffic to your site and generate leads!

You need the Social Media Marketing Boot Camp.

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5 Tips to Take the Fear out of Learning Technology

Recently, I had to learn how to use Amazon Web Services. It’s Amazon’s cloud storage which I’ll be needing for my videos. (They’re taking up too much space on my hosting server.) Well, I consider myself a fairly tech-savvy person and even I felt overwhelmed. I was watching these videos of Amazon engineers talking way over my head. Then I hunted a bit and found some of their webinars on YouTube that were way easier to follow and felt more comfortable learning technology.

5 Tips to Take the Fear out of Learning TechnologyI also figured out a cool trick. I was trying to pause the video, switch over to my account and apply what they just showed. That became a pain. Then I thought of putting my laptop with the video next to my big computer. It was easy to pause, apply, continue. (This would also work with a tablet and, of course, two screens.)

There were 3 aspects of their cloud system that I had to learn. I blocked off a Saturday to learn it all, but my brain was literally fried by 4 pm! And I still had 1 more portion to go! I had to stop.

Yes, even I can fry my brain learning technology. Here are some tips to help you get over the tech learning curve.

  1. Use two devices if you can. One with the video and the other to apply what you’re learning.
  2. Go at your own speed. Don’t feel obligated to grasp everything fast. You might have to pause, rewind and watch it several times before it sinks in.
  3. Apply what you learn as you go or as soon as possible. If you wait much more than a day, you’re going to forget. So make sure you set enough time to review the material, understand it, then apply it.
  4. Once your brain is fried, quit. Usually, no more than 2-3 hours at a time, then take a break.
  5. Realize that you either have to learn all this or hire someone to do it for you. If you don’t have the budget to outsource your technology to a qualified person, then you have no choice but to learn how to do it yourself.

Each person is different, so find what works for you.

Learning anything new takes time, and you’ll be slow at doing whatever it is until you get used to it. But like learning how to drive a car or a bike, once you’ve mastered it, it becomes second nature to you.

I recommend online video tutorials for learning technology rather a classroom setting, especially if you don’t feel you’re very tech savvy. Having taught in classrooms, as the instructor, I had to go at the speed of the class — the majority of the students. The less techie person found it difficult to keep up. With online learning, you go at your own pace and it’s not embarrassing if you need to pause, rewind and view it as many times as needed.

That’s why I created the Social Savvy Solution. Easy-to-follow, online videos that cover all aspects of social media, blogging and online marketing. You can learn at your own time, at your own speed. If you do need help, then I’m available for 1:1 tutoring via Skype.

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How to become known as an expert. It may get you on TV!

Disclaimer: there is no guarantee that as soon as you start blogging or being active in social media, that someone will call you from a news show to interview you for your expertise. However, it happened to me and I absolutely attribute it to my persistence in blogging, activity on social media and connecting with the right people. Becoming known as an expert in your field takes time and effort, but it can be done!

Last week I get a call, “Hi, this is Yetta with Channel 5…”

After I got over the shock, we spoke for a bit. She was pitching a segment on how people can get a grip on their social media usage. She wanted to know if everyone needed to jump on to every social network. I explained, that it depends on what they want or need; what their passions are; what they want to accomplish. And that each network has its own culture.   

The segment aired Thursday, June 30, 2016. In case you missed it, here it is:

KCTV5

When I asked Yetta how she found me, she said she did a specific search on Google. She was looking for a local, social media expert capable of explaining the social networks.

I asked a recent client how she found me and she said, “Google”.  In an elevator, a young man said to me, “You’re the social media lady!” At a networking event, “I’ve heard of you!” and “I’ve seen you on LinkedIn!”

Nuff said. It works.

So what’s my secret? There isn’t one. You just have to do it. Here are a few tips on how to become known as a expert:

  1. Have your website well structured for search engine optimization (SEO)
  2. Make sure your LinkedIn profile is 100% complete and you’re an “All-Star”
  3. Blog 2-3 times a week, no less than weekly
  4. Be active in the major social networks — engage with people, especially influencers in your field
  5. Make sure your social network profile pages for you company are setup properly with quality graphics and complete information – it’s your online reputation!
  6. Write at least once a week for LinkedIn

Need help? Feel overwhelmed? Don’t know where to start?

Click here to schedule a free 30-minte phone consultation and analysis of your online marketing efforts.

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Top 12 Social Media Mistakes Small Businesses are Making

I see it everywhere. Social Media Mistakes marketers make that could be avoided when trying to promote their businesses online! The best thing anyone can do is learn how all this stuff works BEFORE jumping in!

  • You don’t want to look foolish.
  • You want to blend in with the natives.
  • You want it to work.
  • You want to make money.
  • You want to drive people to your website.
  • You don’t want Google to ignore you.
  • You want to get noticed for your products or service NOT because you don’t know what you’re doing!

So here’s what not to do for Social Media Success – Don’t Make These Mistakes!

  1. Dive in without a plan
  2. No content strategy
  3. Not investing in owned assets — your own email list, blog, content website, video, graphics, etc.
  4. Not being human – you can automate a lot of the media, but you still have to be social.
  5. Ignoring comments on Facebook
  6. Not committing to social media long-term – it’s a marathon, not a sprint.
  7. No lead generation strategy – or lead capturing on your website
  8. Inconsistent branding – people need to know what it is that you do at first glance. And yes, you need a logo!
  9. Forgetting to have fun
  10. There is no description (see #7)
  11. Focusing on quantity over quality
  12. If you build it they will come —- NOT!

Here’s an infographic from We Buzz that explains all the Social Media Mistakes that you all are making out there…

Top 12 Social Media Mistakes Small Businesses are Making

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A Successful Company has a Website that is Useful

Everything revovles around your website

Your website & blog is the center of your marketing – learn how to do it right!

Everything revolves around your website. Is your website working for you 24/7? You can be emailing and posting in social media, but if your website isn’t set up right, if you’re NOT capturing leads somehow, all your efforts are for naught. You’re wasting your time.

Your website is more than an online brochure.

It’s a living, breathing, member of your team working to promote your business when you’re not. I recommend a WordPress website. It houses your company information in static web pages and it also houses your blog. Your blog is where you’re going to offer free advice, useful information, tips, something that your target market would be interested in. Solving a pain point of theirs or entertaining them.

The blog when shared on the social media networks, will drive visitors to your site. It’s up to your site to turn that visitor into a lead with a good call-to-action (CTA) to capture the lead. It’s where people give you their email address in return for joining your newsletter list and getting great tips once a month. Or you give them a free ebook, guide or whitepaper.

Give them something so they’ll give you their email address.

Once they do, you can market to them with blog posts, videos and special content to convert them into a sale. You can track what’s working and not working by your conversion rates and click-thru rates. Your site statistics and analytics tell you that.

Talk to your target market

Share your posts in groups and communities online. LinkedIn and Facebook have groups; Google+ has Communities. Read the group’s rules before joining and sharing. Respect them.

It’s about sharing not selling!

In your newsletter, share an excerpt of the blog post with “click here to read more” and that will get people back to your site.

The more time people spend on your site, the better the chances they’re going to do something!

If you’ve tried to create a website on your own and weren’t very successful, we can teach you how to do it right. You can build a WordPress site on your computer then upload it to your web host.

Even if you had someone create your WordPress site, you should really know how to update, manage and maintain it.

Make 2017 Your Best Year Ever!

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Website Planning 101: Important Things You Need to Think About

Website planning 101Website Planning 101 – you have to start somewhere. Might as well start it right!

Are you a start-up in the first stages of planning your marketing including your website and social media?

Do you have an old site that needs to be revamped?

Is your current site not working for you and you want to start from scratch?

Watch this video with Kerry Townsend of SonFisher Web Studios as he explains everything you need think in Website Planning 101:

Things to consider in website planning:

  • domain name/URL
  • branding, color scheme
  • WordPress
  • the visitor
  • navigation
  • calls-to-action (CTAs)
  • pages
  • blogging
  • social media
  • search engine optimization (SEO)
  • competition
  • products or services
  • contact form
  • and much more!

Where do you start?Social Media Marketing Start-up Package

Start here with our Social Media Success Startup Pack. It’ll get you going on the right foot. Even if you’ve been trying it for a while and are frustrated, this will help you get a fresh start.

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The #SocialSavvy Consumer

“Buyer Beware”

Back in the day, whenever you purchased something, the advice was, buyer beware. Before you bought something or hired someone, you had to see credentials, check reviews, or asked a friend or colleague.

Today’s buyers are savvier and more demanding. They expect more. And, if you can’t provide content they can actually use, they will go elsewhere. They are…

Social Savvy

They know where to look. They know who to ask. They know.

They buy from those they know and trust.

Why You Need to Become Social Savvy

To be successful in today’s marketing, you need to know your target market inside and out. You need put yourself in their shoes. Where are they hanging out online? What are they going to enter into the search box to find you? When they have a problem (a pain point) where are they going for answers? How are you going to solve their pain point?

People get online for a variety of reasons:

  • To be entertained
  • They need or want something
  • They have a problem and are seeking help
  • To know what’s going on, see what happened, curiosity, see what’s trending
  • To keep up with their friends and family
  • To learn about the latest products
  • To keep up with fashion and style

The Social Savvy ConsumerWhen your potential customer discovers your website, what do they find?

Articles with answers to their problems? Stories about people like them who have the same issues and how your business solved their issue? An easy-to-see, clear, call-to-action where they can join a list, get a freebie or more info? Entertainment?

When that person finds your Facebook, Twitter or Google+ page what will they find?

A logo graphic that’s cut off? A cover graphic that’s fuzzy or has text that is blocked by page features? Or good quality graphics that instantly tell them what it is that you do? Your last post was over 2 months ago, a few minutes or hours ago? The posts are all about how great the business is — selling, selling, selling?

Having an incomplete or fuzzy-looking social media page is like having a sloppy lobby.

These pages are your company’s façade. They’re your online image. Everything from pictures, the about section and what your posting is part of your brand. What does it say about you?

Are you Social Savvy? Or does it say that you clearly don’t know what you’re doing?

Folks, it’s 2016. Social Media is not going away. You either have to have your act together and get in game or start planning to close or sell your business (if that’s where you have to go, I have someone who can help you).

Start here: Download the Free Define Your Target Market Workbook to find your niche.

Then do some research – where are they hanging out online? Which networks do they prefer?

Learn about the networks. They are like foreign countries with their own culture and lingo. Find communities where your target markets are as well as referral sources.

Make sure your social media profiles and website are optimized for search. Each of the networks has their own powerful, internal search engine.

Think Keyword-Centric

Develop a strategic and a tactical social media marketing plan. This will be updated every month based on your analytics and insights, which tell you what’s working and what’s not working.

If you keep doing what’s not working expecting different results – that’s insanity!

Remember, not being Social Savvy is no longer an excuse. You can learn, practice and succeed at social media marketing with a little help from your friends at AZ Social Media Wiz.

We can do it for you or teach you how to do it yourself.

Click here to schedule a free, 30-minute phone consultation so we can analyze your current online efforts and help decide the best direction for your company.

 

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Videos – the Condiment to Your Marketing

By Taylor Luke, Financial Potion, Guest Blogger

Videos-the Condiment to Your Marketing Who doesn’t love condiments? Ketchup, ranch, BBQ, buffalo; all condiments that add more flavor and flare to a meal to make it that much more memorable. Videos are your condiments to marketing.

By now every business owner knows they need a mobile website, and active social media sites to truly survive. However in order to thrive, businesses needs to pour videos onto these platforms like BBQ sauce to a rack of ribs.

It’s proven that when a video is on the top fold of the home page of a website, visitors will stay on the site at least three times longer than when there isn’t a video on the home page. Videos are first impression clones that allow people to get to know you and your business faster; making them one step closer to a confident buying decision. Sure, you probably have a lot of great content on your website, and you need that for SEO, however people retain 60% of the information given in a video versus only 20% when read. If someone decides to only visit your site once, how much information would you like him or her to retain?

People love to use videos for research because it’s a fun and easy way to obtain information.

According to comScore 45% of all Internet users view 1 video a month and the average views 32.2 videos in one month. If your target demographic includes Millennials, then you need to have video to educate them since 98% will watch at least 1 video a day to research content.

In 2006 Google bought YouTube because they knew it would be the future for communication. Google favors websites that have videos on them, and we all know Google runs the search world.

More social media platforms are leaning on video because it’s what people enjoy. Videos that are uploaded to YouTube can be simultaneously posted on Google+ and Twitter as well. Contents posts with a visible video attract three times more inbound links. On Instagram people can post short 15 second videos because of that fact alone. Periscope, a link of Twitter, is becoming very popular. This app allows people to live stream and become a reporter anywhere at anytime.

People want to work with people they know, like, trust and would hang out with. Videos create transparency for a business, and allow viewers to get an authentic view into the culture. A single video can be placed on multiple platforms to clone your message that could provide you a higher ROI than any other marketing tactic. Marketing is like a recipe, stick to a few basic rules, add your own ingredients and personality, then make sure to add plenty of video for flavor to make that meal, or your business, that much more memorable.

About the Author:

Taylor Luke of Financial PotionTaylor Luke has been practicing the art of video production for over ten years. Originally from the East coast, she moved to Arizona in order to get a way from the snow, cold, rain, humidity and expensive living.  In Arizona she earned her bachelor’s degree in Film and Video Production at Collins College. During school she was a project manager at a video marketing company in Phoenix, then worked two years at a studio in Scottsdale, and since July of 2014 has been co-owner of her own video production company; Financial Potion. Her and her business partner believe video is the potion to relieve business owners of their financial worries. It’s an entertaining and effect way to communicate and educate people, and what she loves most about video production is the opportunities it grants to interact with so many different people and industries.

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