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What Is Marketing Automation And How Can It Benefit Your Business?

Marketing automation is something that we experience all the time. When you book a flight and get an email thanking you for your booking and showing you other related travel services that you might be interested in, this is the job of a marketing automation tool and process. Marketing automation allows you to create a really personalised, one-to-one interaction with your customers on a mass scale so that your communication goes out to the right person at the right time.

Traditionally, things like lead generation, customer retention and marketing required quite a lot of manual labour. Today, marketing automation tools can automate many of the mundane tasks for you. If people visited certain landing pages on your site and submitted their email address for more information, for example, a marketing automation tool can make sure that they receive the right follow-up information from your business.

There are a number of ways that marketing automation can benefit your business, including the following

  • Increased Efficiency And Productivity

Every time someone has to manually enter consumer details into a database, compile an email with relevant information and follow up with the customer, a lot of time gets used. This time can be applied more efficiently when a marketing automation tool takes care of the process for you and the result is that your staff will be more efficient.

  • Fewer Lost Leads

Salespeople don’t always have the ability to keep track of every lead, not to mention where that lead is in their sales journey. A marketing automation tool can be set up to make sure that leads do not slip through the cracks and those reminders are distributed when a salesperson needs to make contact with a client again.

These are only a few of the ways that your business can benefit from marketing automation. As a digital marketing agency, we help many brands create efficient and high impact automation strategies for everything from their email marketing campaigns to content marketing and lead generation strategies. Contact us for more information today.

5 Mistakes Businesses Make On Their Facebook Page

Facebook is undoubtedly one of the biggest social media platforms. With over a billion monthly active users and over 900 million daily users, most brands recognize how crucial it is for them to have a presence on this platform.

There are, however, a number of things that brands get wrong when it comes to Facebook marketing. Here are some of the top no-no’s to avoid:

  1. Pushing Your Products All The Time

Even loyal customers will get fed up if all they see from you is advertorials. Facebook is not the tool for pushing product ads all day long. Make sure you are also writing helpful and educational blogs and adding value to people’s news feeds on Facebook.

  1. Sharing Non-Related Content

The flip-side of the coin is the people that use their company page as a place to share personal content. If a person wants to see your holiday pictures, they will send you a friend request on Facebook. People who like your company’s Facebook page expect to receive relevant information related to your business and niche.

  1. Ignoring Your Audience

If there is a problem within your company and people are commenting about it on the internet, then you need to say something about it on your Facebook page. Do not pretend everything is okay if it is not.

  1. Deleting Comments

It can be very tempting to simply delete negative feedback on your Facebook page and it is understandable that you would not want other people seeing it. But, it is not ethical and it does more damage to your brand. Respond to negative comments as politely as possible and follow up with the person if they have a query that can’t be resolved in the comments section on Facebook.

  1. Not Responding To Queries In A Timely Manner

People expect timely responses to their questions on social media. Make sure that your Facebook page is being checked at least twice a day so that people don’t have to wait too long for a response from your brand.

Do you need help with your online reputation management or social media marketing strategy? Then contact The Digital Marketing People today.

A Beginner’s Guide to PPC and Paid Advertising Online

Pay-Per-Click advertising (PPC) is one of the most effective ways to get your brand, product or promotion seen by search engine users. While search engine optimization (SEO) often requires a lot of content and time, paid online advertising can put you right at the top of Google’s first page instantly.

PPC ads refer to the ads that are on the top of Google’s search bar and down the sides of search results on the right-hand side of the page. One of the major benefits of PPC ads is that you can take control of the entire campaign. You decide everything from the keywords that you want to target to how much you want to spend. Before you set up a PPC campaign, you should do the following:

  1. You will need to set goals for your PPC campaign. Do you want people to pick up the phone and book a meeting with you, buy a product online, or do you want them to subscribe to your newsletter? Having established goals will help you track the success of your campaign.
  2. The second step is to understand the intent of your buyers (you can do this by creating buyer personas). Understanding what their pain points are and how you can help them overcome these challenges are the information you will need to craft compelling ad copy and landing pages to convert search engine users to customers.
  3. Determining the keywords that you want to bid for is the next step.

If you are new to Google AdWords, it is advisable to partner with a digital marketing agency to help you through the process. The team at The Digital Marketing People can help you with everything from keyword research and selection to crafting ad copy and managing your campaign. Contact us for more information today.

5 Easy Ways to Boost Your Website Rankings

The ultimate goal of any SEO or digital marketing strategy is to boost your website’s rankings. When you are able to claim top spots in Google, you will significantly increase the amount of traffic to your website. While any part of an SEO strategy takes a bit of work and effort, here are a few easy things you can do to boost your website’s rankings:

  1. On-Page SEO

Do a website analysis and look at things such as meta titles, headings, subheadings and keywords. Add keyword rich alt texts to your images and make sure there are hyperlinks to relevant internal pages in your copy.

  1. Off-Page SEO

This refers to link building. SEO specialists often use different types of content marketing methods such as guest blogging and article posting to generate high-value links from authoritative websites in a brand’s niche to improve the off-page SEO of a website.

  1. Focus On The User Experience

If your website pages take a long time to load, people will likely click away before reading your content. This is a big red flag for Google. Browse through your website with fresh eyes and try to establish what a new website visitor will experience when they visit your site for the first time.

  1. Update Your Content Regularly

If you regularly publish news articles, blog posts and/or update the content on your website, Google’s crawlers will be back to index your new pages on a regular basis, which is great for your SEO strategy.

  1. Use Different Multimedia

Having different types of quality multimedia, such as images, videos, audio clips and slideshows, can boost your SEO rankings. It acts as a signal of high-quality content and it will boost your user’s experience on your website.

The Digital Marketing People can help you with everything from SEO to responsive website design. Contact us for more information about how we can help you with small business marketing today.

How to Manage Your Brand Reputation Online

Online reputation management

Did you know that 90% of consumers do online research for assurance of a company’s brand or the products that they are interested in buying?  Social media, internet forums and online review websites have given consumers a lot of power. With a single Tweet, a person is able to give love to a brand that they like or to hate on a brand that they don’t like. This presents companies with opportunities – but it can also be a curse.

Managing your online reputation matters more than ever. Here are a few strategies to manage your brand reputation online:

  • Set up Google Alerts

Login to your Google account and go to https://www.google.ca/alerts to set up alerts for brand names, people’s names and product names that you want to monitor online. You can choose that Google notifies you daily, weekly or fortnightly about any mentions of your product online.

Google will also show you a URL of where the brand or product was mentioned. You can then choose to respond to comments, queries or reviews about your product online accordingly.

  • Social listening

Hootsuite and TweetDeck can be used for social listening strategies. In today’s consumer-driven economy, people expect the same type of customer service on social media that they would get from face-to-face interactions in a store.

Not every business owner can afford to spend hours a day responding to comments and queries on Twitter and Facebook (and your business may not even have this level of online interaction). The general rule of thumb is to try to respond to comments on social media within 3 hours. Consider hiring a social media manager or training an in-house employee to check these platforms every few hours.

There are a number of other strategies and tools, such as Google reviews and online PR, which can be used to help you with your online reputation management strategy. Contact our digital marketing agency for more information today.

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Industry Stats

When it comes to digital marketing, there are two ways to go about getting results:

  1. The Long Play: This involves Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Social Media Marketing, Email & Marketing Automation, Reputation Management and more. These digital marketing topics build assets over time that will work for you long after you stop paying for them but have a much longer startup phase and longer return cycle (ROI).
  2. The Fast Play: Paid Advertising, usually in the form of Pay-Per-Click Advertising (PPC). PPC allows you to “jump the queue” as it were, getting your ads in front of people immediately for an almost instant gain.  Time and skill allow for significant optimization of a PPC account, but the benefits cease as soon as you stop paying for the ads.

For most businesses with goals to grow, the best option is a mix of these strategies so it’s important to understand all of the aspects, at least to some degree.

When it comes to PPC, understanding stats like CPC (Cost Per Click), CPA (Cost Per Acquisition), CTR (Click Through Ratio) and CVR (Conversion Rate) can help you keep your ad spend under control and ensure the ROI you are looking for. Acquisio, a big name in PPC automation has created the following infographic outlining stats by industry for these varying PPC areas. Continue reading “Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Industry Stats”

Why You Can’t Afford Not To Invest In Responsive Web Design

Responsive web design

Responsive websites have been designed in such a way that they can adapt to the devices that they are being displayed on. Whether a person is using a desktop, a laptop, a tablet or a smartphone, the website will adjust the content and images so that the layout makes sense for the device that the site is being displayed on.

Before responsive website design, a website would simply be displayed smaller or larger depending on the screen. The alternative to a responsive web design is an ‘adaptive website’, which is where a different version of a website has been created for mobile users. You can spot an adaptive web design by the URL, which is usually something along the lines of m.companyname.com or mobi.companyname.com. These websites usually don’t have all the features and functionalities of the desktop version.

With responsive websites, most of the features and functionalities are still available. The design differs by reorganizing and restructuring features by using web development tools such as cascading style sheets and JavaScript.

The reason why you can’t afford to not invest in responsive website design is that the use of mobile phones continues to increase. The number of people browsing the internet and communicating via their mobile devices has surged and skyrocketed – and this trend is not going to change anytime soon.

In 2016, mobile web usage overtook desktop for the first time. The dramatic shift in behaviour means that everyone from banks, e-commerce websites and brick and mortar stores need to be able to give people the information, functionalities and features they expect from a website on any platform that they choose to use.

Our website design company can create a great looking, functional responsive website design for your brand. Contact us for more information today.

Location Marketing – An Inside Guide to Local SEO

Local SEO

If you have a business that operates in a certain geography, then you need to start investing in local SEO. It is not hard and it is not expensive. As part of a comprehensive local marketing solution, in addition to paid advertising using Google AdWords, you can use local SEO to claim top spots in search results.

The first thing you need to do is go to Google My Business by visiting https://www.google.com/business/. Google My Business allows you to submit or claim your business on Google. Here, you will enter your company name, your address and your phone number. Once your business has been added, you can rank in Google’s ‘localized pack’. If you run a pizza shop in Toronto, for example, and people search for pizza restaurants from their mobile phones, then your business may appear in the top localized pack search results on their screens.

Your next step is to get reviews. The more people who review your business positively in Google My Business, the better off you are going to be in terms of search results. When people visit your shop, ask them to rate you on Google. Many businesses focus solely on Yelp reviews and while there is nothing wrong with Yelp reviews, ratings and reviews on Google also carry a lot of weight.

Brick and mortar businesses also need to make sure they are including their phone numbers and their addresses on the Contact Us page of their website. All too often, companies opt for contact forms instead of giving their contact details on their website, which is not always in your best interest when it comes to local SEO. If people are searching for localized queries, then you are much more likely to pop up in search results if your address and phone number are on your website.

These are only the basics of local online marketing, but our digital marketing agency can help you with a number of high-impact strategies to improve your local SEO. Contact us for more information today.