Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Why Quality Content Matters a Lot in Over All Online Marketing of a Company

why quality content matters for a company

Importance of Quality Contents

As 2014 is pushing along, the businesses are now experiencing the importance of a great content marketing strategy and therefore they have put on an intense focus on creating as well as sharing best quality contents. But while it is really easy to use the phrase best quality content, but only a few can actually define it.

There is a huge misconception among quite a number of business people that setting up some basic stand alone site is the only thing necessary for reaping the benefits of the Internet marketing strategy. As a result, these businesses easily get out of the competition very soon. So, if you really want to make your online marketing strategy powerful enough and if you want to optimize the online campaign, then you have to recognize the necessity of the quality contents.

Importance of good contents according to the search engines:

The major search engines like Google, Bing, MSN and Yahoo have increasingly become totally content driven. Besides, in the recent times Google has announced that it will only reward the good contents and will reduce the spam. So, according to the new algorithm only high quality sites with the best quality contents will get priority treatment.

What does good content can do for any site?

It is necessary to keep the websites updated in order to get a high search engine ranking. As people often say content is the king. There are actually a number of reasons, but the most vital reason is that the major search engines like Google, Bing or Yahoo only award sites with enriched and fresh contents, which the readers find valuable. Besides, with the help of a good content it is possible to improve the organic search engine ranking of any site that puts the business stand apart from the competitors.

So, for every business, having valuable and current content on the website is a must. To do this, it is necessary to update the sites with high quality, fresh and relevant contents. As a result, these sites obtain the best results every time for the businesses while out-performing their competitors. So, whether you own a brick and mortar store, a boutique, a taxation firm, or a kitchen appliance store, the content of your site is one of the major things that lead to sales. So, you must consider it as a priority.

The benefits you can get from quality contents:

  1. Best quality contents will shorten the SandBox effects: All major search engines have the Sandbox phenomenon. Sandbox is basically a time, search engines take to measure a sites quality, intention and longevity. Google has clearly shown us that they are more interested in value addition and hate web spamming. So basically, in the sandbox time period search engines keep on checking the quality of the website or blog and if a new website or a blog continues to publish valuable contents regularly then after few initial months it will surely get the traffic and conversions. Generally we have seen that sandbox effect lasts for initial 3 months to 6 months and then sites or blogs will experience the traffic tractions from search engines. So it is quite natural that the consistency and quantity of quality contents can actually shorten this time period of sandbox for a site.
  2. Best quality contents will enhance the odds of getting new businesses: This is one of the major benefits that quality content can provide any site. Besides, great contents are also an amazing source for the less known or smaller companies to get the radars on the prospective buyers. This thing is mainly true in all the professional services industries where the executive consumers are mainly intrigued by the power of ideas offered by the firms and not by the size of the marketing budget of the companies.
  3. Best quality contents can stick your ranking: It is really challenging for the normal SEO articles that their rankings can slip anytime or disappear due to the tweak of the Google’s algorithm. Therefore, it is really beneficial to invest on quality contents as by making content marketing one ongoing effort; this risk can easily be avoided. This way, in case the rankings of the past articles slip, the new articles will take the place.
  4. Other benefits that quality contents can provide you: The quality contents of any site or webpage control the best positions for the main keywords and this ranking then helps the businesses grow in a number of ways. One of the best benefits is more amount of traffic. This means more and more people will visit the landing pages of your site or blog, will read it entirely and will join the email list. This way, people will start following you on your social networking profiles and the popularity of your business will spread likewise.

Underlying challenges:

  1. Identifying the potential customers and their needs: This is the biggest challenge for the small businesses, especially if they have a tight budget. Before starting content marketing you have to identify the segment of customers for your services or products that you are going to offer and market. A professional content marketing firm can do this for you otherwise you have to do some initial and periodic researches to understand who can be your prospective customers and what their actual needs are from your product or service.
  2. Ignorance of the power of quality contents: This is another major problem for companies. Most of the time small businesses do not understand that why it is very important to maintain a proper content marketing strategy for their company. And even if they understand, they look uncertain about the results as content creation is a continuous process and takes sufficient time to develop.
  3. Interested but having very limited budget: After last few updates on search engines it is now proved that quality is the main aspect for the success of ranking. So hiring a good and ethical content writer or firm is very much crucial. Regular monitoring and conversations can ensure the quality and freshness of the contents otherwise there are several online tools available in market that small businesses can use to gauge the duplicity and effectiveness of the contents. So depending on the budget, the volume of work and the quality of the writer or firm businesses have to invest money on content writing regularly.
  4. Irregularity in content publishing: Content marketing will surely work for any business if they don’t give up or interrupt the regularity of publishing contents. It takes effort, time, investments and a bit of basic knowledge on content marketing. Remember, once you are in, you should remain patient and continue to post contents related to your industry maintaining regularity. If you do so, by the time you learn the knowhow of this marketing technique, you will be out of the sandbox and will experience the growth in traffic and sales conversions.

In conclusion:

In this increasingly competitive web marketplace, having high quality and content rich site is a must for every business. Any business can easily create the right content plan with a little investment that includes valuable details for both the current and prospective consumers. Keeping this importance in mind, businesses should be developing an effective content strategy to offer the edge in the niche.


Monday, June 23, 2014

Common Mistakes on Social Media, Businesses Must Not Commit

social media myths and mistakes

Social Media Myths

The social media platforms allow the companies to reach to their target customers in such a way that most never ever have dreamed. Like the previous years, in 2014 too, more and more businesses are using the social media to market their services and merchandises. However, often the companies fail to fulfill their targets as they jump into the field of social media marketing without any proper strategy.

While promoting the brands or the businesses through the social media, most of the organizations think that it is a simple exercise that will instantly start bearing fruits. But actually it is a big misconception as for every social media marketing campaign, it is necessary to put in loads of hard work along with a precise and a flawless strategy to come up with gratifying and positive results. Besides, it is necessary to be proactive to keep updating the details that you post, interact with both the prospective clients and the existing clients and do other things to covert the visitors into the potential customers.

But to do these things, the businesses commit a few mistakes and these can really be fatal for them. In case you are a business owner and want to avoid these faults, then you should be aware of these. Here are the top eight mistakes businesses often make on the social media platforms that you must watch out.

  1. Tweeting for long: Twitter is undoubtedly one of the strongest mediums of social media at present and this is going to be stronger in the upcoming few years. This is the reason why now the businesses are using this platform in the maximum way. But in order to avoid overdoing it, it is necessary to learn how to do it. Tweeting works as a great marketing tool, but only when it is used within limits. So, keep the tweet limited to three to four times a day instead of tweeting for all the day long.
  2. Using loads of hashtags: Before you use any features of the social media, it is really necessary to have a comprehensible idea about how much usage of those features can be beneficial for your business. One of the major features of twitter, facebook, google+ and pinterest is the hashtags. Though, it has been a popular trend in 2014 to use maximum limit of hashtags, but it is important to avoid this trend as long as your business is concerned. Use two or three maximum hashtags and remove others to ensure that your business has maximum utility. This thing will be really beneficial for your business.
  3. Follow lots of people: This is one of the biggest misconceptions we see in people’s mind. Remember, Social Media is not about quantity but it is all about quality. Handful of quality and prospective people can be more valuable than the random noise in your social networks and above all the noise can actually suppress the approaching voice. So it is better to follow few thought leaders in your industry and prospects who are already interested in your products or services. This way you will be able to listen to them properly, pay more concentration on their queries and provide thoughtful knowledge and solutions.
  4. Obsessive about gaining too much tweets or likes: These days, with the advent of a number of social media websites, marketing the products has really become very easy. While you post about any new products or services of your company on Facebook or google+, you will definitely get more likes and shares. Besides, you can inform your clients about the products or services on twitter by making tweets. Though these shares or tweets can be great marketing tools, but it doesn’t mean that these can convert the visitors into your customers. So, you have to do something more to ensure that these tweets and likes bring you more business. This is a courteous thing that you can do as a professional.
  5. Shrugging of all the negative feedbacks: Often businesses ignore the negative feedbacks that they get in their social media accounts. But ignoring these feedbacks can badly reflect on your business. Whether you admit it or not, but the visitors are prone to read the negative comments first while they visit the social media profile of any business. So, if you really want to spread your business through the social media platforms, then you should not ignore these negative comments and should address them properly to solve the issues. 
  6. Utilizing social media as the mouthpiece of your company: At the present time, social media has become a great place where people mostly interact. But using this channel as a major platform to market the products or services is one of the biggest mistakes that the businesses commit. Rather, the social media platforms should be used in such a manner that these can work as a medium to post the news about the products or the services that your brand offers and most importantly to share the knowledge or tips on a particular industry or niche. This way, you can attract the potential clients to your sites and it will inspire a discussion. The result will be better business with enhanced profit margin.
  7. Social Media is free and can deliver immediate results: Indeed, using social media platforms such as twitter, facebook, google plus, pinterest, linkedin or youtube is completely (or partially) free but there are hidden investments as well which we can’t ignore. The most crucial and biggest investment is time, we invest good amount of quality time to plan strategies, create contents & graphics, execute campaigns etc. to reach to our targeted audience. As it truly said that the ‘Time is Money’, so we are actually investing money in terms of time, skill, strategy building, campaign creation and many others. Apart from all these there are paid social media which actually works according to the amount of money invested but can build a brand and create awareness about a product or service. Social media does not deliver immediate or quick results & success rather it takes continuous efforts, consistent creativity and long time.
  8. Have to be present on every social networking site: No, this not true and do not even try this. Rather, concentrate and engage on few big social media channels and be active and productive on them by communicating with your followers, potential customers and industry leaders. Apart from big social media sites you can even join on couple of comparatively smaller niche social sites for better productivity.

The bottom line is, measure & analyze different insights provided by different social media sites and accordingly change or modify your strategies. Remember, strategy that worked for any other business may or may not work for you. So, concentrate on people and their needs on your industry and try to solve their problems proactively. And have patience, consistency, goal and vision to win your target.


Thursday, June 19, 2014

Why and How to Target Mobile Internet Users?

Why and How to Target Mobile Internet Users

Importance of Mobile Internet Users From The Business Perspective

At the present time, the total number of mobile Internet usage is exploding in leaps and bounds. By the year 2015, the trend of mobile website browsing will surpass the habit of desktop browsing as the tablet, Smartphone and other hybrid device's popularity is growing enormously. So, at present if a business doesn’t have a mobile presence, then the business will surely miss out on the numerous opportunities to turn into the on-the-go prospects to pay the clients. Businesses must understand that mobile internet users are basically shoppers who seriously intend to buy a product or service from their locality. Let’s have a look why it’s really important for the small businesses to target the mobile Internet users:

  1. At present, total 3 out of the 5 searches made on the Internet are done through the mobile phones
  2. People across the globe mainly favor the mobile browsers for various purposes like local information, banking transactions, shopping, travel and many more things
  3. Around 70% of the total searches made on the tablets and Smartphones result in the action within an hour
  4. Around 75% of the Smartphone users entirely rely on their phones to get any information and also to get the location related details
  5. The mobile phone coupons are mainly redeemed more times than the traditional coupons
  6. More than 80% retailers are planning to do huge investments on Targeted Mobile Marketing this year
  7. Around half of the total Internet traffic comes via the mobile devices

According to these points mentioned above, around half of the adults across this globe use the mobile phone Internet to do the necessary search on the web. So, the web marketing plans of the small businesses must target the mobile Internet users. Even if you run a small departmental store, a restaurant, a boutique, an interior decoration firm or any other business, you should target the mobile Internet users as well as your site should be mobile friendly too. At the present time, when people mostly use the mobile devices to complete their web search requirements, if your clients don’t find you through the mobile search, then your business will be left nowhere.

So, the mobile marketing process is a great method to target the potential mobile Internet user clients, who are interested in the products or services offered by the companies. The companies can conduct the mobile marketing through creating mobile optimized sites, mobile advertisements, through sending text messages and email. But targeting the mobile Internet users through the mobile marketing can be really challenging. As the sizes of the mobile devices vary, so some times these campaigns can be restricted because of the differences in the screen sizes, system configurations and in the operating systems.

Here are the ways how you should target the mobile Internet users:

  1. Build a mobile friendly website: Mobile friendly and responsive websites are the current trend. But do not think, it is a fashion but this is a true need of the present days. Due to the easy accessing and on-the-go searching and browsing facilities, people are more tend to use smartphones and tablet devices for their regular internet accessing. So to target this new set of internet searchers, a company must have a mobile friendly website which fits into any device or screen size automatically and delivers the same contents across the internet. These websites make it easier to read and surf the contents on various devices like desktop computers, laptops, tablets and the Smartphones. Apart from the enhanced user-friendly nature, a responsive site is more search engine friendly than a similar quality non-responsive site. 
  2. Know your market: In case your small business is geared towards the demographic, which has the massive smart phone usages, then it is better to know the market first. The mobile marketing of your site can be more successful, if your site targets people of the age group 18 to 34. As the people of this age group are mostly the mobile Internet users and potential buyers.
  3. Go local: Another step to target the mobile Internet users is to claim the Google Places & Bing Places presence. To do this, submit your site to the local search engines. Besides, listing businesses to local business directories with consistent Business Name, Address and Phone number can also lead more visibilities on major search engines. Quite a large percentage of people, use the local internet while looking for the web through the mobile phones. This way, the businesses can get loads of exposure, from all the people who are ready to purchase products or services from these businesses.
  4. Incorporate the QR codes: You can incorporate the Quick Response Codes or QR codes on the ads, flyers, business cards and also in the email signature. The QR code is the matrix barcode, which can be downloaded to any Smartphone for free and or is readable by the QR scanners. So, even by this way you can send your potential clients a particular webpage or the details of any special offer or discount.
  5. Start a mobile friendly email campaign: If you are already sending emails to your loyal and prospective customers and clients then now this is the time to go for mobile friendly email campaigns. Email is the top most activity on smart phones and if you can target your subscribers properly with your email campaigns, special offers, coupons and discounts then you can get loads of visitors, leads and sales conversions easily, quickly and above all at a minimum acquisition cost.
  6. Send SMS: Once you get the scope to contact with your potential clients, send them right type of messages to get them to opt-in to the exact promotion or to click on the link.
  7. Build up a mobile app: These days, due to the ever increasing popularity of the Smartphones, people are quite friendly with different types of mobile apps that make the user experience better and simpler. Depending on your business type and volume, you can also take the help of this technique to target your potential clients. Build up an interesting app that can sell your services or products and can drive traffic to your site by engaging your prospective clients. Besides, you can use these mobile apps for the advertising purposes of your company as well.

Above all, to run a successful digital marketing campaign on any channels or devices a continuous testing, measuring and thorough analysis is very much crucial. So always monitor the results you are getting from your marketing efforts & investments and accordingly adapt the best methods which are giving the maximum ROI.


Wednesday, June 18, 2014

9 benefits of a Responsive Website

benefits of responsive web design

Why responsive websites are Must for a business

Recent studies have proved that by the next year, the usage of the mobile Internet will eclipse the desktop use. Even at the present time, a huge amount of web traffic comes from the mobile devices. Therefore, this is the high time when every business, whether small or big should consider redesigning or building responsive websites. People often ask what responsive websites are all about and why these are important for the businesses.

The answer is that the responsive websites are basically the websites which fit or reformat into any screen sizes across various devices. Today, there are various types of devices of different sizes to surf the web like desktop PCs, large screen laptops, tablets and the Smartphones. With the responsive development, it can be ensured that a site is viewed properly on all these devices. That means, the website should be able to offer satisfactory, enhanced and easy user experience even on the mobile devices.

These days, the mobile devices are considered to be more accessible than the desktops or laptops as people can easily use these devices on the go anytime and from anywhere like while working, while watching TV or while traveling.

The problem with the fixed sized sites is that these are not compatible with the large screen monitors and laptops. Besides, these sites don’t also support the small screen devices like the iPads, smart phones and tablets. As a reason, they don’t look good on different types of screens. This is one of the major causes why the businesses lose their potential clients and customers. So, if you own a company and your website has not yet taken the advantage of the responsive web design, then plan it now or there are chances that your business will go out of the competition very soon.

Here are a few reasons why responsive websites are a must now:

  1. These sites can easily adapt to the sizes of the screens: Creating responsive websites can be a big thing for every business as these sites look good on the devices of every size as these can easily adapt to the sizes of the screens. Being mobile friendly is very important for the businesses so that the prospective clients and customers can reach to their websites anytime and from anywhere. So, if you can’t provide mobile friendly experience for the clients, they will bounce off and will visit your competitors, who have responsive sites. So, creating responsive sites is an intelligent move.
  2. These sites can accommodate the intuitive scrolling feature: According to the recent web design trends, the responsive sites should be scrollable and toward more vertical. As people navigate the sites in a different manner on the tablets and on the Smartphones, they are mainly inclined to use the touch technology to scroll the sites. With only the responsive design it is possible to accomplish the vertical scroll, on which the mobile devices mainly rely on.
  3. Responsive sites can save your money: Mostly people have a misconception that building responsive sites can be costlier than the usual sites. But this is not true. Rather by creating a responsive website, businesses can save money that they might have to spend otherwise, may be on a mobile app or a mobile specific site. Besides, being user friendly, the responsive websites can bring more revenue to the companies.
  4. Responsive website is platform independent: Unlike a Mobile App which is mostly Operating System dependent, a responsive website, developed properly is completely device independent. It means, irrespective of the operating system or the browser and the type of devices being used, the sites will offer the most optimized user experience as well as will also respond according to that. This is really beneficial for the business owners, as they don’t have to build multiple versions of their sites. Rather, they can embrace the content and the design that suits best with their brands and they can be rest assured that their sites will be reflected properly around various platforms and screen sizes.
  5. Easy to update and manage: It is relatively easy to make updates on these sites rather than the usual sites and their mobile versions. It is because; the developers can update these sites whenever needed from any type of devices without putting any extra effort. Each and everything is clearly displayed on the responsive sites, no matter through which screen size these are seen.

SEO advantages of Responsive Web Designing:

  1. Search Engines, more precisely Google loves responsive website: If you are running a business and if you want to get customers & clients from internet or search engines then you should have already known the power of Google. Google is the world’s biggest search engine with around 67% market share. Google has stated very clearly that it appreciates mobile friendly responsive designs. Today user-experience is one of the major factors for ranking higher on SERP and a responsive website provides better user experience than a non-responsive website when viewed on different screen sizes. 
  2. One URL, Multiple Devices: Multiple versions of a website for multiple devices and screen sizes can create content duplication (canonicalization) issue. Responsive websites maintain a single URL structure of the website across various devices which removes the URL canonicalization issue and naturally boost the ranking on search engines.
  3. Lower bounce rate: A responsive website generally has lower bounce rate than a similar quality non-responsive website. Though only being responsive can’t assure the lower bounce rate but it is always a good move towards the better optimization of user experience and search engines.
  4. Increase the traffic and user engagements from social media sites: Sharing contents on social media websites is also an important part of overall marketing of a website or company. People love to share valuable contents and when contents from a responsive website get shared, these create single URL for each content (webpage), which makes it easier to navigate around the contents when these are viewed on different devices.

Conclusion:
Responsive websites are more search engine friendly, they offer enhanced user experience across various platforms and devices of different screen sizes. Due to their better responsiveness, mobile friendly websites generally have lower bounce rates and better sales conversions. So if you are designing or redesigning your website and thinking of responsive design then you are on the right track otherwise you won’t be able to make the most of tablet & mobile traffic.


Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Small Businesses and Their Social Media Strategies

How Social Medias Can Benefit A Business

These days, a number of businesses have started joining the social media due to the feature of free marketing. The term free marketing indicates that the business owners can post their ads or deals for free (paid ad option is also available) on various social media platforms like Facebook, Google+, Pinterest or LinkedIn. Besides, they can run different contests on twitter to attract the new visitors as well as to engage with the present clients to their sites.

Thus, it is quite evident that using the social media platforms can be really beneficial for the businesses. Because, these allow the companies to get direct access to both the present and the potential clients, to answer the questions, to spread details of their products or services, to address different issues in some conversational format and to showcase their brands to millions of people across the globe.

So, if you own a business and if you are not familiar with the importance of different social media platforms for your business, then the services and the terminology can seem to be very daunting for you at first. But you can learn these easily. The majority of the social media services are quite easy to use and also affordable. Besides, learning these techniques can also help your business to get in touch with the customers and the potential clients like never before.

The social networking platforms also add a fragment of personality to every business, allowing the voice of the company to shine through. So, businesses need to be careful, who is updating the messages on the social networking platforms remains consistent with the brand messaging of the company and also conveys the right message. Apart from that, the businesses must keep in mind that social media marketing is also a form quite similar to the human resources or public relations, based on the always updating and informative nature of the social media.

Now let’s have some insight about different social media platforms that are great for different marketing activities.

  1. Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn: These are the social networking sites that allow the businesses to create different pages on the names of the companies, post videos and photos of the products or services offered, promote the special offers and have direct conversations with the clients. Besides, the first two social networking platforms also deliver aimed marketing messages to the clients in the specific locations through the mobile devices like tablets and smart-phones.
  2. Twitter: This is basically a micro blogging site, which allows the business people to send and receive small texts from the clients and the potential clients.
  3. Pinterest: These are one of the sites that allow the businesses to post the pictures of their products or services along with the descriptions. So, the visitors can check the details of the products or services sites through this site.

The benefits that you can get from using the social media platforms:

  1. Target particular groups or communities: A few forms of the social media (such as Facebook, Google+ etc.) allow the businesses to target some specific groups & communities, often in the particular domain, industry or location
  2. Broad reach: The social media platforms have the power to reach to numerous people across the globe easily at a time
  3. Low or free cost: A few forms of the social media come with both paid and free options. The paid options are generally low cost.
  4. Easy to access: One doesn't need any high-tech computer equipment & infrastructure or any high level technical skills to participate in the social media platforms. People with standard computer knowledge will never face any difficulty accessing these.
  5. Personal in nature: The social media platforms allow the business owners to communicate with both the groups and individual clients in a personal manner
  6. Fast: With the social media platforms, the businesses can distribute information quickly to a number of people.

In a nutshell, the social media platforms actually have the power to bring the different businesses together with the help of the formal and informal communication methods. Besides, these also bring out the process of sharing ideas between people that can help the companies a lot to grow.

But, to acquire the benefits from the social media it is necessary to spend a certain amount of time regularly to participate in your social media strategies. So, update the information daily and keep all your information intact. Treat the social media platform as something your clients are going to come by to check about your company. In case you don’t update these details on a regular basis, then they won’t come back. Putting up a profile is not enough rather you need to keep the conversations going.


Sunday, June 15, 2014

5 Ways Small Businesses Can Use Digital Marketing to Attract New and Online Customers

Small business digital marketing

Local & Small Business Digital Marketing

Being SEO consultants, we need to talk with different business owners from various industries and demographics and most of the time we have seen that many small and local business owners do not have a clear idea about how they can use Digital Marketing and online platforms to maximize their business leads and sales. Having a website for your company is not going to be enough for your business until and unless that website reaches to the millions and billions of targeted online customers & clients. Your business details must be in front of your prospective online consumers when they search or browse anything on internet.

In online world there are few marketing processes which can get you instant or very fast results and there are techniques which takes time to deliver the desired outputs. Depending on the business model, budget allotted for the online marketing, market competition, available resources & expertise and target or goal a company can make use of the both or any one of them. Digital marketing is more cost effective, targeted and measurable than any other form of traditional or offline marketing. An ethical, intelligent and efficient use of internet can boost any business’s sales volume and help in attracting more amount of relevant and targeted traffic to their websites.

Harness the power of SEO or Search Engine Optimization:

Search Engine Optimization is one of the best ways to market and brand your company, products or services to a vast amount of targeted online users organically. It is the technique or a set of techniques which brings a website at a higher position (ranking) on Google and other major search engines like yahoo, Bing etc. for specific keywords or phrases related to the business. These days Search Engine Optimization is completely different than it used to be earlier. It has become harder or you can say, more technical and at the same time it is quite easy if done properly and ethically. Harder because after recent search engine algorithm updates on Google, an optimizer needs to be hundred percent ethical and do loads of things with a good SEO subject matter and real time knowledge. At the same time the Content Management Systems and various SEO tools offer even the non-experts a chance to implement some parts of the SEO at ease.

Organic visitors are more targeted, relevant and reliable to a business than any other form of traffic. The acquisition cost of an organic user is the cheapest (depending on the volume, competition etc.)  and the average sales conversion ratio is also very attractive. Ultimately this technique guarantees maximum online visibility at a much cheaper rate over time. If the site visibility increases then the number of visitors to a website bound to grow which intern generates more number of business leads and increases the sales volume for the company.

Pros:
  1. Targeted & relevant traffic to the website
  2. The cheapest acquisition cost over time
  3. Good sales conversion rate
  4. Gives maximum exposure for a company or website
  5. Indirect branding is done
  6. ROI (Return on Investment) is completely measurable

Cons:
  1. Takes long time to build the momentum (sometimes 6 months to even 1 year)
  2. Inadequacy of properly skilled SEO experts
  3. Periodic but unscheduled search engine algorithm updates

Invest on Adwords (PPC) according to your budget:

SEO takes time to get the results and for a new business or website it is important to make profits from the very beginning of its inception and operations. PPC or Pay-Per-Click gives the opportunity to market our products or services through search engines in such a manner that when a potential customer clicks on our ads we need to pay a certain amount of money to the respective search engines. In this form of marketing we pay for the clicks but not for displaying our ads. It delivers the results from the very first day the PPC campaign starts and depending on the budget or on the goal, we can continue or discontinue it at any time we want. Almost all the popular search engines have their own paid ad systems but without any doubt Google (Adwords) is the best of all.

As SEO is becoming more and more hard and quality centric (which is very good), the small and local businesses are investing money more on PPC. Just like SEO, PPC is also much targeted and can bring relevant traffic to our websites. The average conversion rate of this type of online marketing is very good but the acquisition cost of a paid user may vary depending on the keywords, competition and the demographic.

Pros:
  1. Targeted & relevant traffic to the website
  2. Good sales conversion rate
  3. Indirect branding is done
  4. ROI (Return on Investment) is completely measurable

Cons:
  1. Acquisition cost of a paid user can be costly
  2. Click bombing is done by opponent websites or companies
  3. Completely depends on the investments

Social Media the newest trend in online marketing:

Social Media or Social Networking sites are the online platforms where huge number of people gathers to interact with each other. We can reach to those people (organically or by paying money) to communicate socially and to brand a company or business. Branding on social media is not about promotion of our products or services rather it is more like creating direct conversations between a company as an individual and its clients or potential customers. Social media websites should be used to create the brand awareness by creating valuable, informative and engaging contents, pictures, events, questions, polls etc.

We all use social media in our day-to-day life but having an account on various social websites and using them is far different from organizing & utilizing them for your business. Regular updates, interactions, question-answers can boost the overall credibility, reachability and confidence about a business or brand towards its latent customers. Social media is not always about talking or representing a brand rather the inclination should be towards helping others by sharing knowledge and expertise. This way we build a community around a brand which guard and amplify the words about that company organically.

Apart from the organic reach of social media we can use these platforms for displaying our business advertisements, promotions and offers to millions and billions of highly targeted people. Mostly these paid ads work as CPC (cost per click bid, same like PPC) or CPM (cost per thousand impressions bid) and can generate pertinent traffic with high conversion rates.

Pros:
  1. Enlarges company’s natural reach
  2. Huge amount of people gather on social media websites
  3. Numbers of social platforms to explore
  4. Direct communication is possible
  5. Easier to get valuable suggestions and feedback
  6. Huge branding opportunities
  7. Completely measurable

Cons:
  1. Organic reach is decreasing day by day
  2. Ambiguous negative branding is possible
  3. Paid ads require good amount of initial and periodic investments depending on the targeting parameters
  4. Click bombing is possible
  5. Insufficiency of really skilled resources

Enlarge the business reach by content marketing:

As it is truly said that the “Content is the King” and we have to focus on creating good quality, relevant and informative contents that can help and fulfil our prospective customer’s queries and needs. Content creation consistently can enlarge the organic reach of a company, products or services. As a result, more and more people looking for the same solutions or items can find our contents and then they can learn about our company. But creating contents cannot be the target rather businesses should understand buyer’s persona & behaviors, their needs, their limitations and the general market requirements and accordingly they should plan and strategize the content marketing campaigns.

Contents can help us in various ways; they can broaden the market reach, increase the search engine visibility, create the brand awareness, get us the industry & media coverage and generate the business leads & sales. Depending on the budget we should plan the content marketing strategies but in any situation or by any means we should not indulge in creating and publishing duplicate contents. Besides, the proper targeting of relevant segment of users who are looking for our services and products is very important along with a strong Call to Action (CTA).

Pros:
  1. Increases the overall internet visibility
  2. Gets the media attention and industry exposure
  3. Creates the brand awareness
  4. Increase the sales volume
  5. Establishes as an industry or subject matter expert

Cons:
  1. It is not that easy and takes time to develop
  2. Regularity and consistency is must
  3. Contents can be out-dated over time
  4. Needs initial investments
  5. ROI is not completely measurable

Email Marketing, a form of traditional marketing:

Email marketing is a traditional form of online marketing where a business can interact one-o-one with another business or a vendor or an individual in a more direct manner. It is really economical and if done properly, ethically and efficiently then this form of marketing can deliver very good results at a very short time. Depending on the email open rates, clicks and conversions, businesses should do regular A/B testing to understand consumer’s mind-set, their requirements and preferences.

There are certain rules businesses must understand before starting an email campaign. Business emails are not personal messaging, so without a prior permission from an individual or another company we should not start emailing them about our products or services. There are particular formats and rules of writing business or marketing emails that businesses should stick to. Besides, in each of our emails, we must include a proper way for our email recipients and subscribers to unsubscribe from our mailing list.

Pros:
  1. Most cost effective compare to any other form of online or offline marketing
  2. Establishes direct conversations
  3. Creates the brand identity and product or service awareness
  4. Generally high response and conversion rates
  5. Fast results at minimum acquisition costs
  6. Completely measurable

Cons:
  1. Requires highly creative and innovative thinking (designs)
  2. Needs authentic & genuine email subscriber’s lists
  3. Can be marked as spam
  4. Numbers of spam reports can damage the domain of a website

To conclude with:

There are numerous methods and channels of digital marketing and each of them has their own advantages and flaws. It completely depends on the company how they are using and managing these tools and platforms to market a solution or an item.

Youtube, Affiliate marketing, display ads etc. are very good and effective for certain types of businesses and can be explored depending on the business type, model and budget. Not only these, there are several digital marketing online tools and web portals available on internet which can be leveraged to gauge their effectiveness for a website or business.

Finally, do not depend on a single form of digital marketing rather diversify the whole marketing campaigns in different channels and always monitor and analyze the outcome.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Social Media Career Path in 2014

SMO as a Career Option

SMO or the Social Media Optimization is known as the procedure of increasing the responsiveness of any brand, product or event by using different types of communities and social media outlets to create the viral publicity. This process is also known as the perfect blend of the social media and the Search Engine Optimization. If used in the proper manner, this procedure can be one of the greatest assets of any company that can be used for enhancing the organic search results of the site of that company.

While it seems that there are more number of social media consultants in the industry than the number of companies that are here to hire them, but actually the scenario is completely different.

So, if you are planning to enter into the job field as a social media optimizer or social media marketer in any online marketing company, you should have more practical experience and knowledge than only having accounts on different social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest, LinkedIn etc.

People often have a fluffy idea about the job of the social media optimizers that it is all about opening accounts in different social media platforms, making friends with thousands of known and unknown people. But actually the main goal of this job is to show how strong your social media network can be, how effectively you can share a message through the social media and how much engagements and communications you are creating.

Besides, to be a social media optimizer, one should have a thorough knowledge in the things like social network research and development, social network planning, social content promotion, social data analytics and monitoring for reports and insights and light SEO. A good Social Media training institute can help you in gathering knowledge about these things. Training and experience are the two things that can help the passionate users to convert into the expert social media analysts, who can offer impactful social media advices and insights to others.

The social media industry is actually a cut throat industry. So, people who think that it is really a cool place to work in can really have a hard time here. All you can find that after a tiring work schedule, the final end products will be really cool with plenty of wide-ranging features.

Now let’s have a look at different types of career opportunities that social media optimization can provide you:

Social media marketing manager: These people oversee all the aspects of the social media campaign of any company. The duties of these people are mainly associated to create and maintain the social media accounts, research on the behavior of the prospective clients and users, craft campaigns that can attract people and manage all the contents and the designs of the social media outreach. Besides, they are also responsible for creating strong Call to Action and building communications & relationships with industry leaders and decision makers of different organizations.

Social media marketing associate: These people are mainly responsible for the planning and implementing the campaigns of social media marketing. Besides, they make connections with the bloggers and the clients of any company to create the gossip buzz to attract the visitors to the social media pages of a company.

Social media marketing copywriter: These professionals are mainly responsible for creating creative and innovative messages for different social media campaigns and for releasing the messages on different social media platforms. They create, design and edit podcasts, pictures, videos, slides and contents which actually generate the social communications and user engagements.

Social media marketing analyst: The duties of these people are to analyze the effectiveness of various types of social media strategies and therefore research about the new trends and tactics in social media optimization. Apart from that, they also work to troubleshoot the technical issues with the social media campaign. These people should have a clear knowledge about the procedures like writing newsletters, website copy, descriptions, press releases and other types of contents that are used to communicate in the social media platforms. Besides, they must possess thorough understanding of various technicalities of social media products and should be proactive to learn different technological advancements and updates of those platforms.

If you plan to join the social media industry as a freelancer then you may have to work for all the above mentioned positions. Therefore, it is necessary to have thorough knowledge of all the procedures related to the job of social media optimizer. Besides, you have to be capable of facing different challenges to grow your expertise.

To conclude with, the social media optimization is the right career option for you if you are passionate about working with different social media platforms, technologies, tools, marketing strategies, optimization of the campaigns, case studies, research and analysis etc. Besides, you have to be extremely energetic, should be capable of working under challenging situations, should be capable of brainstorming to come up with new and effective ideas every time and should have the zeal to learn constantly from this field.

Good read: