The Local Step by Step Guide to Online Marketing
If you have a business on Vancouver Island this guide is for you:
But first I want to talk about some of the people I believe are experts in the field of online marketing. I am going to miss some of the giants, but that’s OK. But I will point you towards some excellent online marketing people that I refer to on a daily basis.
When it comes to digital marketing I don’t place a lot of stock in trying to figure it out through trail and error. So if your looking for a lot of original thoughts you’ve come to wrong blog.
I believe in doing what works over doing something original especially when it can save you months of frustration and a load of cash!
Some Notable Online Marketer’s
So basically almost everything online now a days are curated ideas and unoriginal content, most of what you’re about to read is a collection of things and ideas that I have research, personally used, listed here and parsed in a way that will help me explain step by step, some of my personal experiences and some valuable case studies I’ve looked at.
Everything I have included in this article is intend to be easy to understand and actionable, so you can create your own plans to launch and maintain successful online marketing campaigns.
But before I go any further I want make sure I give credit to some of the giant’s that the online marketing community stands on the shoulders of. The ones I use to ensure I’m on the right path and not going down a rabbit hole.
So in no particular order here are a just a few people I believe are crushing it online. I recommend that you familiarize yourself with them. They can go a long way to ensuring you become an online marketing expert in whatever industry you are involved in.
- Neil Patel is the co-founder of Crazy Egg, Hello Bar and KISSmetrics. He helps companies like Amazon, NBC, GM, HP and Viacom grow their revenue…
- Brian Dean a legend when it comes to link building and traffic generation. His skyscraper technique…
- Rand Fishkin is arguably the most recognizable face in the SEO industry. The founder of Moz…
Check out this list of the who’s who in the Online Marketing Expert field. Look at Robbie Richards list of the 80 Online Marketing Experts To Watch In 2015 (By Category)
Why Another Great Online Marketing Resource?
So with so many great resources why am I writing another blog about how to do online marketing?
That’s simple. Here’s my Top 5 Reasons.
- Online marketing is complex
- Most online marketing experts give you either two much knowledge, or not enough
- I could not find an easy to follow step by step guide to online marketing
- It’s best to follow a kindred spirit who understands the challenges of online marketing and lays out an actionable plan that works
- My step by step online marketing plan is geared to the local Vancouver Island Market, from Campbell River, Courtenay, Nanaimo to Victoria including Google’s local 3 pack and Local Search.
What you will find in this guide
- In Victoria Everything starts with a decent [WordPress] Website
- Getting Found in Courtenay Search Engine Optimization essentials
- Social Media Marketing Duncan shares
- Email Marketing – it’s all in the list Nanaimo
- Getting started with Pay per Click Advertising – but I live in Port Hardy
- Getting set-up with Analytics Parksville needs data too
- How to do Content Marketing when you live in Gold River
- The importance of Lead Generation when you’re in Chemainus
- Landing Pages 101 From Nootka Island
- Automation [Building Your Funnel] in Port Alberni
#1 How to Launch a Great WordPress Site
Neil Patel states in his recent article published in Search Engine Land that roughly half of the sites using a content management system (or what is referred to as a CMS) use WordPress and with good reason. Here are a few of top ones.
In the June 2015 article by wpbeginner they went on to answer the question why someone should choose WordPress. The editorial staff stated. “People often make the mistake of classifying WordPress as just a blogging platform.” It is far more than that. With several thousand WordPress themes and ten of thousands of (Free) and premium plugins that can be downloaded and installed on any website. In fact chances are that some of your favorites are no doubt WP websites. Check out this list of notable sites that are powered by WordPress. Names like CNN, Best Buy, Jay-Z, Katy Perry, Microsoft News, you get the picture.
Victoria's Best Real Estate Website Solution
So why do I say WordPress is the best solution for a realtor in a city like Victoria? Because it’s so versatile, easy to operate and widely used. Follow along with me and I’ll prove it.
Installing Your WordPress Website:
I have included this WordPress install step and some additional resources for anyone just starting out with WP.
There are some great tutorials available, please feel free to reference them, or reach out to me for any assistance.
After you pick a domain name and get a hosting account for your website you can begin with your WordPress installation. Some hosting companies like WP Engine include everything you need, while others will allow you to purchase your domain name from them as well as a hosting account.
I have included a list of some of the most popular hosting companies and they will work just fine if you’re just starting out. But as your online marketing needs change, you will probably want to seriously consider upgrading your hosting package. Here is WP Site Care’s top 3 recommendations.
So Who REALLY Has the Best Real Estate WordPress Hosting?
If you’re just looking for our opinion, the best WordPress hosting companies for shared hosting on the market today are:
OK to save a bunch of time on the install BlueHost has a great deal for the self starter that’s worth checking out. Reach out to me if you need some help.
Every so often I get an email from another really great source that provides information that I think could be very useful to some of my readers. I’ve checked out his blog and he has some great insight when it comes to picking a great website hosting solution.
Here’s the email he sent me.
I want to let you know that we’ve released in-depth guide to explain website hosting in detail. It has been written using simple language and it’s intended to serve all people who are planning to make an online presence.
You can take a look at it here: http://firstsiteguide.com/web-
I would be thankful if you could mention our free guide within your hosting paragraph as an additional resource for your readers who want to read more about this?
#2 Picking a template
OK so maybe your not a realtor in Victoria, maybe you’re the office manager of a Nanaimo law firm and the partners want a custom built, amazing law firm website, but gave you almost no budget to put towards the design!
A great template will save you a lot of time and frustration in development costs. I have been designing websites professionally now for over 20 years and I would never consider designing a WordPress website for someone without a quality template to start with.
There are a lot of options out there and WordPress does provide a lot of Free templates you can use.
That said I prefer some of the premium packages offerings that are available like the Themeco X theme with 4 basic frameworks and multiple (what is referred to as) stacks. This option gives you almost endless options for look and functionality of your theme, rather than trying out a lot of different themes to find a starting point. They have a great community for assistance and support.
Next would be Themify a Toronto based company with some really cool frames and plugins. They also have excellent support especially when it comes to css styling. They are constantly adding to their stable of great themes and addons and their themes just keep getting better and better.
A great place to shop around for a premium WordPress theme would be Envatomarket. All the top authors for WP themes and plugins post their items for sale there plus a whole host of other goodies that are there for you to browse through.
Installing the theme
How to manually install a WordPress theme:
- Go to the WordPress dashboard, go to Appearance > Themes > Add New.
- From there you’ll see an option for “Upload” at the top of the screen. Click the “Browse” button, navigate your computer files and select the .ZIP file for your downloaded extension. For an in-depth documentation about WordPress theme manual installation, read the official WordPress.org documentation.
WordPress Theme activation
Simply activate the theme like you do for any other theme in your WordPress admin.
Once uploaded, click the “Activate” link.
Installing the Plugins
But your situation is totally unique and you don’t see how WordPress could possibly work for your Oak Bay Ecotourism web presence?
How to install your favorite WordPress plugins:
If you still have your doubts on how widely used and versatile WP can be just check out the Oak Bay Tourism website.
Using a great template, some design skills and some great plugins there’s no telling how successful your website can become.
Installing a WordPress plugin is probably explained better through a video and it may also help clear up additional questions you may have if you’ve just started using WordPress. Take a look at this great beginners video supplied by WPBeginner.
Top Plugins to Get
Some top plugins you should install:
And I’m fighting back the urge to start telling you about all the latest and greatest WordPress plugins.
The ones that everybody is talking about.
Because I remember my own frustration whenever I was trying to find some basic common sense information to get started with.
Instead I just experienced a bad case of information overload.
So with so many great plugins out there I am just going to talk to you about a couple of the essentials ones and a few of the ones I personally like.
I will look at some other plugins later on, but to minimize information overload right now I’m only going to talk about the ones I would use to get your website up and running.
Remember that there are many ways to accomplish your online marketing goals. These are just my ways and chances are that you may find better tools to match your individual needs and marketing style.
- AddtoAny The one I’m using right now on this blog
- Akismet Comes bundled with WordPress install and protects your blog from spam
- Broken Link Checker This plugin will check your posts, comments and other content for broken links
- Contact Form 7 The most popular WordPress Email Contact Form Software
- Google Analytics for WordPress The most popular Google Analytics plugin
- Redirection Manages redirects to make sure you don’t end up with 404 errors (page not found)
- Woocommerce The most popular eCommerce (shopping cart) in the world
- Wordfence WordPress website protection from malicious attacks
- WordPress Editorial Calendar Makes it possible to see all your posts to manage your blog.
- WP Smush Reduce image file sizes, improve performance helps SEO
- WP Super Cache fast caching engine for WordPress that produces static html files
- Yoast SEO Popular WordPress Search Engine Optimization Plugin
These are a few of the plugins that I recommend and as we progress through this step by step blog I will talk about some others that you may want to try.
Search Engine Optimization Essentials
So lets talk about the basics on how to optimize your site:
What is SEO? It a catch all term to describe ways that you can make sure your website ranks well on search engines. Or as Search Engine Watch would say ” Quite simply, SEO is the umbrella term for all the methods you can use to ensure the visibility of your website and its content on search engine results pages (SERPs).”
So how do we accomplish this? Well for the purposes of this article I’m going to keep it as ‘Step by Step’ as possible.
If you haven’t already installed Yoast SEO? Now would be a good time.
Using Angela Petteys ‘Everything You Need to Know About Using Yoast SEO for Wordpress‘ is an excellent step by step tutorial with an estimated read time of 23 minutes.
It’s pretty comprehensive and by the time you finish you should have a pretty good understanding of what Yoast can do.
Don’t be discouraged if you are not sure how to complete all the steps and how to integrate everything. As I said, it’s pretty comprehensive and you can come back to the plugin settings as you learn and increase your understanding.
For now, lets just get Yoast installed so we can do some basic on page SEO.
Pay special attention to the bottom part of Angela’s tutorial. It’s explains how the plugin will work along side your blog topics to ensure that you have done the best job possible on things like your page title, focus keyword, description, word count, comprehension and so it looks great on social media .
Google Webmaster Tools
Now we want to set up Webmaster Tools:
Next setup your Google Webmaster Tools account. Click ‘Add a Site’. And enter your site’s URL
- Next, you’ll need to verify that the site is yours. You’ll be given a number of options, but the easiest way is to verify via your Google Analytics account. So we can come back to this later, or choose one of the alternate methods.
- Once your site is verified it’s a good idea to add your sitemap.xml that was created automatically by Yoast SEO.
You’ll do this in Webmaster tools in the ‘Crawl’ area found in the search console dashboard. All you need to do here is paste the sitemap.xml url and click submit.
Define Your Keywords
First question, does keyword research even matter anymore? The answer to that is yes and no. What I mean by this is that search is constantly changing and evolving. Google is changing algorithms 500-600 times a year and looking for several factors. Factors like user intent. Users don’t care about keywords, they just want the best results for their search. Long past are the days were you could stuff a bunch of keywords on a page and Google would reward the SEO expert with a high page ranking, but the user would often end up with a terrible search result.
OK so why spend time talking about this topic then?
Because keywords still matter when crafting your website towards user intent!
Neil Patel states “Keyword research isn’t the only aspect you need to be researching when optimizing a website or planning your content marketing. I want you to go a level deeper—to the level that users are searching for and search engines are indexing for.”
So rather than try to explain everything there is to know about keyword research, why it’s important and how they apply to different types of searches. Let me instead direct you to Chapter 5 of ‘The Beginners Guide To SEO by MOZ and you can learn all about it at your own pace.
Right now lets just take some action to get started.
Lets gather up some tools to use: Check out RobbieRichards.com great top 10 Keyword Research Tools and hear what the leaders in Online Marketing have to say about them and how they each rate and pick their top tools. Some of these tools are Premium and charge a monthly fee for use – most, (if not all) of them are worth the price of admission. That is if you take Online Marketing & Keyword Search strategies seriously.
My favorite go to tool is SEMrush.
But for the purposes of this guide I’ll stick to the Free tools.
So here’s the areas of keyword research that we are going to focus on
- Finding Keywords
- Google’s Keyword Planner.
- Keyword Competition
- Keyword Commercial Intent
- Long Tail Keywords
- Adding Keywords to Content
Here’s a few quick tips to finding keywords that are relevant to your target group.
OK let’s start by using your favorite browser and Google Search. Let’s use the search term website design for example.
(Make sure you are browsing in private mode so you do not skew you results based on prior searches.)
Open your browser to Google and in the search bar start to type the phrase website design. As you continue to type Google is auto completing your phrase based on search volume and relevancy.
Now that you’ve completed your search, scroll to the bottom of Google’s search results and notice the area that say’s
‘Searches related to website design’
Here you will find a larger list of related keyword phrases that have been search and sorted based on search volume.
- Google your topic with Wikipedia in the search phrase.
- Make a list of the phrases that are being used in the SERP results
- Search Wikipedia for your topic
- Now right down the keywords from the first paragraph
- Create longtail keywords from this list
- Gather keywords from the table of contents
- Check the Related areas and Related topics area
- Check out the references
STEP by STEP:
- Make sure you have a Google Adwords account. (you don’t need to spend any money on Adwords to use it) Just follow the prompts, enter some basic info and your in.
- Login to Google Adwords
- Click Tools > Keyword Planner
- Click on ‘Search for new Keywords using a phrase, website or category’ and a menu appears
- ‘Your Product or Service’ Enter 1 to 3 keywords that are closely related to your industry. (do not enter a broad term or you’ll just end up with a ton of keywords that are highly competitive)
- Enter your landing page here (more designed for Adword user)
Tip: Enter your competitors landing page here. Sometimes you can find some great keywords from the planner that wouldn’t otherwise see.
- Enter your product category
- Targeting: Enter your geographic location (Negative keywords relates to Adwords)
- Customize your search:
Average monthly searches. You can set this to show only searches with a certain monthly search volume.
Suggested bid. This can help to show commercial intent. (very handy when you want to see if people with money to spend are looking for your keyword. – If not, you may want to rethink your keyword choice?)
Ad impression share: Just for Adwords
Keyword Options: You can pick from Board match, Phrase match, or Exact match. I suggest leaving this as is.
Keywords to include (or exclude): These are keywords that you absolutely want or don’t want to see.
- Click on get ideas
Keyword Results Page:
OK now that we have our results we have some additional options we can choose.
- You can sort your results into Ad group ideas (which is a Google generated list of keywords sorted into related groups) Or you can click on the keyword ideas tab and view just the keywords that were generated. [Tip] If want to download your keywords to an Excel spread sheet, click the download button.:
To find the commercial intent of your keyword:
You can click on any of the tabs to change the sort order.
Clicking on ‘competition’ and ‘suggested bid’ can give you a pretty good idea on the keywords commercial intent. The higher the intent, the easier it will be to convert that traffic into paying customers.
Or what is called On-Page Optimization:
Search engines look at how keywords are used in the context of the web page to determine the authors intent. Sometimes what you intend to convey isn’t interpreted correctly by the search engine and you end up on page 10 and that really sucks when everybody that’s ever met you knows that you are a class act.
OK, so now we need to make sure we can get that point across to both the search engine bots and the site visitor.
This is where a plugin like Yoast comes in. Yoast is kind of like a foreign diplomat that understand both you and the search engines and starts to guide you through the process of ensuring your website is properly optimized.
I know, that’s a pretty bold statement and I can hear the groans now from all the experts. But all we are really doing right now is giving you a place to start from and the free version does a pretty decent job to get you started with on page SEO if you follow along with the analysis.
Don’t worry about getting all green lights. That can be pretty unattainable depending on your topic. But if you can get a decent score, it helps ensure that Google will know who and what you are.
Social Media Marketing
With over 200 social media networks listed on Wikipedia alone, how do you know which ones you should focus on? My advice is fish where the fish are. Congregate where your target is most likely to notice you, engage and be responsive.
Neil Patel seems to be the best resource that I can find and I suggest if you are looking for someone that writes some excellent resource material he’s awesome! Check out his ‘What is Social Media Marketing‘ and you’ll see what I mean.
For the purpose of this post I am only going to focus on a few of the most popular channels to get started with.
There are lots of great resources out there to on how to set up a social media profile Hootsuite’s guide is a great one to start with
- Being able to manage and schedule all of your social media efforts is also something you will want to consider.
– I not going to go to in dept here, but I would like to point you to some links that cover this topic. ‘27 social media tools..‘ & Sprout Social vs Hootsuite vs Buffer: Which is The Best?
- You also want to make sure you’re setup to collect data. This is essential to your online social media marketing efforts.
– In order to do this, we are going to shorten our URLs and track them to see how our campaign is doing. I am going to suggest Bitly for this, so now would be a good time to setup your (free) account. [Tip] In Bitly click on stats to see all your links. Now you can see things like total clicks, hits, saves and time of day when you received them, you can also see where those clicks are coming from, what location and from what marketing channel.
What do I mean by non-complete. Just that. How can something as broad and as culturally transforming as Facebook ever be completely explained in a blog post.
All I want to do is give you a Swiss Army Knife understanding and starting point (or jumping in point depending on where you’re at) of how to get started, build some engagement, start a campaign, look at some paid advertising options, plus a way to measure your results.
Create Your FB Presence
Creating your Facebook Presence:
First off lets be human. Showing your human side should be your highest priority, it needs to be if you expect people to engage with you.
Invite your audience to glimpse behind the scenes, get to know your team. Post daily events, pictures of your holidays, well you get the idea.
People will tend to trust your brand more if they feel as though they know you.
Create some fresh content. It’s not like that a new strategy, but it’s worth repeating. No one is going to keep coming back, get engaged must less talk about old boring stuff. Would you?
And whenever possible make sure it’s brilliant! Become an influencer, because people will become huge fans of great content that’s shared often.
Here’s some tips to get you started:
- Create a Unique Cover Photo. Make your image 851px by 315px save it as a .PNG. This is Facebook’s fixed size, so it’s going to look best if it’s not automatically resized.
You can use whatever image you think will work best for your brand.
For something really unique try this free service for your cover photo. Tricked Out Timeline
- Create a custom Facebook web address. (facebook.com/yourbusiness) You may have to play around finding the right address if the one you want is already taken or to long
- Fill in all the other information you can. Take your time, be a thorough as possible
Be Engaging with Your Facebook Audience:
Which comes first engaging your community, or building a community to engage? The answer is both.
A large number of businesses use Facebook to continually make sales pitches and to shove their products in front of their customers and they wonder why it doesn’t bring in any business. Stop being in love with your own offer just long enough to look at it from the stand point of your viewer. Ask yourself this question, ‘when you watch TV do you turn it on for the commercials?’ Nobody likes to be bombarded with a constant sales pitch. But they will stay tuned for quality content and appreciate your corporate message when it’s posted in high quality content.
Here a few different types of content to give you some ideas.
- Infographics. These are the most socially shared content type.
Infographics are very engaging. Since people process visual information faster than words, it only makes sense.
- Interactive content: Probably the most viral form is the quiz. People will engage when asked to interact and check the results
- Content that creates a strong POSITIVE emotion. No big mystery that Awe inspiring and happy emotions get the most shares.
- Content that includes an image. I sure that this shouldn’t come as any surprise but image rich content on Facebook and Twitter is a lot more shareable!
Twitter stats: 18% more clicks, 89% more likes and 150% more Retweets
Facebook photo stats: 53% more likes, 104% more comments than the average post, post with photo albums 180% more engagement, posts with photos 120% more engagement
- List Posts: People love to share lists. That is to say, posts with a certain number of points. like top 10′
Compare this to News & general information post, or an explaining style of post [Tip] Why not combine a list post with a why question like like “7 Reasons Why List Post Will Always Work”
- Newsworthy content. However, if you’re not Reuters this type of post is probably not going to happen for you very often
Building a Facebook Community
Focus on Creating a Community:
Focus on creating a community – it’s not just about the likes.
Having true fans is important to your brand and to your page. When people aren’t interested in your content it can hurt you.
- Invite your email contacts (if you haven’t already)
- Invite your friends (if you haven’t already)
- Invite new friends
Every time you add a new friend make sure to send them a message: “Hi. Thanks for adding me to your friends. Please like my page if you are interested in [something your page is about] and let them know they are free to join in with there input
- How about thanking everyone who like your page
- Add a Page as your workplace
Go to your private page – ‘About’ –‘Overview/Work and Education’ – Add a workplace and start typing the name of your page until the moment Facebook shows it.
- Make your likes section public
- Make sure you put your Twitter link on Your page
- Add a link to your Fan Page in your Email Signature [Tip] Get a Gmail account if you don’t already have one. For online marketing it’s the center of the Universe
- Make your content amazing (I know I already said this but it’s worth repeating)
- Make regular post
- Use quality images
- Pin your best Post to Top
- Use your CTA (call to action buttons)
- Ask people to like & share your posts
- Ask people to follow your fan page
- Promote your page on all your social networks
- Promote your page in your email newsletters (and in pretty much everything else you do)
- Contact other Admins and ask them to recommend your page
- Add a like box to your site
- Create a Facebook badge
- Try using the Hello Bar on your page as a way to collect likes, it’s free and very popular
Measure the Success of Your Facebook Marketing:
There are a lot of things to measure when it comes to online marking. But for now we are only going to look at Facebook Insights.
Let’s look as the different tabs to reveal what they do.
OK now lets look at the “Insights” area, different tabs reveal different ways to look at your results, including:
Let’s take a look at how this all works.
The Overview tab shows a date range. Within it, you’ll find Page Likes (Total Page Likes and New Page Likes).
Click on Likes, we see an overview of Likes in their many forms.
Reach Organic vs. Paid: ‘Organic reach’ is the total number of unique people who were shown your post through unpaid distribution. ‘Paid reach’ is the total number of unique people who were shown your post as a result of ads.
Visits: The number of times your Page was viewed. Example, Page Visits, Info Tab and Photos Tab are displayed. Facebook Insights measures each area of the page and you can see the data easily here.
Post reach: is the number of people who’ve seen your post – your post counts as reaching someone when it’s shown in their News Feed.
Page Visits the number of times your Page was viewed. Example, Page Visits, Info Tab and Photos Tab are displayed. Facebook Insights measures each area of the page and you can see the data easily here.
Facebook Post shows a report on the performance of posts. The report displays every post, including the image used, copy, type of post, and the post’s targeting, reach, and engagement. This view makes it easy to get an overview of what’s working and what isn’t.
There is a lot to cover just in this one area and you don’t need to know everything. But if you want to learn more about Insights Yoast has a great article and Hootsuite has an awesome beginners guide.
Facebook Advertising Marketing Guide:
Facebook Ads or advertising give you several options to reach your target or increase your audience size.
Lets start by selecting a marketing objective
So lets create an ad using Facebook’s Ad Manager
- Create a campaign using Facebook’s Ad Manager
Now create your campaign based on any of the following objectives
This list includes everything from sending people to your website to getting app install, to raising event attendance.
Now choose which page you’re promoting (if you have more than one), now name your campaign in Facebook’s Ad Manager. Use a campaign title that’s as descriptive as possible. A unique campaign title will allow you (or your team) to know exactly what the campaign they are targeting.
- Target your audience using Facebook Ad Manager
Facebook ads should be targeted so they are shown to specific groups of highly engaged people. You want to know your target audience in depth.Use this information to base your ad targeting decisions on.
The top targeting options include: Location, Demographics, Interest, Behaviors, Connections [fans of your page], Current Customers [from your email list], Lookalike Audience [people similar to those who like your page]
Fill in the New Campaign area with information describing the appropriate audience for the campaign:
The “interests” section of Facebook’s ad manager system is very robust and granular. You can pick people that are interested in areas that relate well to your business marketing.
Choose Connections: because, in this example, the objective is more page likes, you want to exclude the people who’ve already Liked the page.
Potential reach: This area will show you how many people within the audience you’ve chosen can potentially see your ad.
Review Audience: This area will let you review the results of your targeting selections.
- Choose your campaign’s budget, time of day and duration
- Select the images for your Facebook Ads thoughtfully
Ads should only contain 20% text in the image (including logos and slogans)
Test your ads by creating more than one ad in each ad set and see how your audience responds and adjust your campaign accordingly. There are some free tools to help you with ad sizing like PicMonkey & Canva
- Optimization: You can set your ads up to run on whatever platforms you think are going to be best suited to reach your target. Remember with mobile being so widely used, if you’re not sure have your ads run on all devices.
- Conversion Tracking: Doing this means adding a short section of code (known as a conversion pixel to your web pages. While this sounds complicated, it’s actually fast and easy. From Facebook Ads Manager, click on Tools and Select Conversion Traffic. A window will pop up:
Twitter Social Media Marketing
First thing I should mention, if you don’t have a Twitter account already you’re going to need one to follow along.
If that’s you? Start here. Creating a Twitter Account
If you’ve heard that Twitter doesn’t work for business and there is no return on investment? Don’t believe the lie!
A lot of businesses used the strategy of relentlessly shoveling their sales message into the face’s of their customers and wondered why people didn’t engage. What did they expect? No one likes to be hammered with a salesy’ pushy message that is consistently and relentlessly in front of them.
Another thing I wanted to point out is that Twitter isn’t Facebook so you need a different marketing strategy. Understanding how Twitter works and how it can fit into the social media landscape will shape the way you use it.
Here are some of the main ways a business can use Twitter: One of the best infographics I’ve seen is Pickaweb Twitter for small business
- Manage your reputation
- Increase brand awareness
- It’s a great way to network and connect with people
- You can interact with your customers – even keep them posted with time critical messages
- Promote activities (and yes even product announcements)
- Share content and information
Using Twitter for promotion is a fine balance of the bid, the creative, engagement and copy, there are a lot of elements to get it right. That said, there’s a lot you can accomplish in 140 characters or less! Check out WordStream’s list of successful Twitter ad examples.
Taking on marketing from a paid perspective when it comes to Twitter makes a lot of businesses uncertain on how to proceed.
The fear of wasting a lot of time, money and human resource trying on a Twitter campaign has most thinking it better left untried.
Get Started With Twitter ads
How Twitter Ads work & How To Set Them Up:
Create your Twitter Profile for Business
- First you want to create a Twitter account for business. There is no real difference between a business and a personal account, but you want to specify it’s for business to personalize it.
– Pick your username, something on brand of course and remember that it counts towards the 140 character limit when people reach out to you.
– Don’t use the Egg! – Pick a profile picture. The recommended size is 400 x 400px.
– OK now lets work on the Bio, your 160 character alevator pitch. You can test it here if you’re not sure Kissmetric’s “So What Test”
-Link your custmers to your webpage. Don’t forget to attach your URL
-Pick a header image for your Twitter profile. Recommended size is 1500 x 500px.
- Attach your profile to your Ads account. Twitter Ads Login Page
- Choose a Twitter campaign type the best fits your objectives
– Tweet engagements: Keeping your community engaged with your content, or how to effectively reach a new audience
– Video views: Use this if you want to promote a video to your target audience
– Website clicks or conversions: If you are looking for a promotional campaign to your website or product landing page choose this type of campaign. Twitter will serve your ad to to people it believe are most likely to click on your post
– App installs or re-engagements: Like the title says choose this campaign if you have an App that you want people to download and install
– Followers: If you’re just getting started on Twitter this is a way to boast your follower count. This type of campaign promotes your Twitter profile and encourages users to follow your page
– Leads on Twitter: This is the best campaign for collecting business leads. These campaigns take advantage of Twitter Lead Gen Cards
Creating Your Twitter ad
Selecting the Right Twitter Ad Content For Your Campaign:
Of the three main types of content there are for your ads (Tweets, Twitter Cards & Videos) you need to choose the one that best suits your Twitter ad goals.
The classic 140 character message type that you constantly hear about. You can ad an image (remember it’ll cost you 23 characters)
One of the best things about this type of promotion is that you don’t have to create an ad, there are already almost an unlimited amount to choose from
A Twitter Card is a way to create rich campaign experiences for your target group and they have a lot more functionality than a regular tweet. This can make these types ads way more effective, giving you a better return on your investment
– Website Cards: These are a great alternative. Easier to setup then Lead Gen Cards. They can include up to 116 characters of message copy, an image, website link and a Call to Action Button
– Basic App Cards: Like name name implies, this ad is design to have people install you app on iOS and Android systems from either iOS App Store or Google Play Store
– Image App Cards: Same as the Basic App Card, but you can upload an additional image
- Videos: Promoting videos to play inline on Twitter
Twitter Ad Budget
How to Setup a Twitter Ad Budget:
Now it’s time for the rubber to hit the road and select a budget amount. Twitter requires you to set an amount that your campaign can spend each day and it will stop after that amount has been reached. It is optional to determine a total campaign budget for you campaign to run continuously.
The default bid pricing option is set for ‘Automatic Bid’ which will auto optimize the price. You can also choose to indicate the maximum bid you are willing to pay.
If you are looking to attach your ad to a trending topic or event, you probably want to choose the accelerated option, this will deliver your ad in bursts instead of in intervals over the day.
Note: if you want to maximize budget, create highly targeted campaigns and use A/B testing using a small amount of budget on each one to determine which one is performing the best
Twitter Ad Targeting
Targeting Your Twitter Marketing Campaign:
Ways of choosing your target audience:
Twitter ads offer a number of targeting options which give it a real edge over organic Tweeter.
What makes social media advertising so great is your ability to zero in on a specific audience or customer profile and reach them through your campaigns.
Being able to target your ads based on location, gender, languages, interests and device. You can also upload lists of specific people, your email list for example, and target only the list with your ads.
Also checkout the Hubspot guide to twitter advertising for details on Keyword Targeting on the four options for the type of keyword matching you would like performed:
- Broad Match: Your ad will appear when the keyword phrase appears in any order, and the system will match your ad with related terms, misspelling, and known slang.
- Phrase Match: Your ad will be matched with tweets that contain the exact keyword phrase in the exact order as you type it.
- Negative unordered match: You can indicate that Twitter should avoid matching with a specific negative keyword that appears in any order.
- Negative Phrase Match: You can select a keyword phrase that is ineligible for matching if found in a specific order.
Measuring Twitter Marketing Effectiveness
Analyzing Your Twitter Marketing Results:
You can’t improve on what you haven’t measured, so you want to check and make sure your Twitter ad campaign is optimized to perform at peak efficiency and squeeze out all the performance you can.
How to access Twitter Analytics it’s open to everyone, personal accounts and company brands.
You can get a much better view idea of how your campaigns are doing using a tool like Buffer.
Some of the most useful stats are:
- The top 10 interests of your followers: Twitter shows you the top 10 interests of your followers, as well as the top 5 most unique interests of your followers
- Your follower breakdown by region: Twitter gives a breakdown of your followers by country
- Who your followers are following: Great for competitive research
- Types of engagement – Find out if you are being retweeted or liked?
- Engagement rate:
– embedded media
– profile photo
– tweet expansion
- Calculating Twitter Like rate
- Tweet engagement vs length
- Tweet reach percentage (How many followers did you reach)
- Tweet reach (including your retweets)
- Discover your most significant sharers’
- Hashtag comparison: Impressions vs. Engagement vs. Engagement Rate
- Impressions by Time of Day
- Engagement rate by time of day
- Clicks & retweets by time of day
- Best days for total engagement and engagement rate
Linkedin Social Media Marketing
This has got to be the World’s biggest LinkedIn infographic from Marketing Tech Blog. If you want a visual step by step guide to setting up ‘Linkedin profile perfection’ this has got to be it!
Building a really good LinkedIn profile matters regardless of why you use this social media platform. Lets look at Marketing Tech’s seven steps
- You need a to create your Profile
Get a decent photo of yourself
- Follow LinkedIn size specifications. Louise Myers has put together a great cheat sheet for optimum sizes for all social media including LinkedIn
- Use Outreach for Recommendations
Make sure you get your ‘job well done’ on your profile
- Hidden Features
Join common groups, Find a person’s post, Group members can message each other,
Create a showcase page
- SEO make sure you optimize your titles, link back to your website and other social media channels you use
- Stay active, provide value, share advice, connect your network to leads and always work towards becoming a LinkedIn master
- Secure your profile. Enable the 2-factor authorization so your account can’t be hijacked
- (I know I said seven) Consider paying for the premium addition!
Determining your LinkedIn Audience
Now that you’ve completed your profile, now you want to add the people you know on LinkedIn, friends, family, or the people you work with or worked with. You’re two strategies are to connect with people you know or with people you don’t.
Connect with the people in the same industry.
Connect with all the random be it in same industry or not.
In LinkedIn, when you send a request to connect with other users it asks you that how you know that person. So, while adding those unknown people (but from same industry) make sure you use a standard message, like:
‘Hi, i would like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn.’
Join Relevant Groups for Promotion
LinkedIn groups drive decent traffic as compared to Facebook groups.
When you’ve to search for groups within your target group, send a request for approval.
Select group option in a search box, now enter your keyword (topic) that you are targeting. Example; search for nutrition, technology, and health depending on you niche or industry.
Build trust before you start posting in LinkedIn groups, (Don’t want to spam EVER), take the time to build some trust in thee group. Consider how you can add value and help the organization in a meaningful way.
Here are the few ways to create credibility in groups.
- Build a relationship with the LinkedIn group managers and gain their trust as well.
- Participate in existing discussions that have various members engaged.
- Like & comment on posts of others so that they can also give you back in the same way.
Post manually people often use automated tools to post in the groups they belong to. Making sure you are engaged and involved is going to be the fastest way to becoming a valuable member of the groups community
A few tips for getting maximum exposure in LinkedIn groups
- Post in relevant groups to get maximum targeted traffic.
- Post your “best articles” focus on quality over quantity.
Start your own group
A LinkedIn group offers excellent networking & marketing opportunities. One way to create trust in a group is to create it. Kissmetrics has some great advance marketing techniques. When you become the owner and moderator of your own group, you gain authority and are recognized as an industry leader. Positioning yourself authoritatively and not in a salesy way, you can form a place where your target audience can gather and interact.
Publishing content on LinkedIn will show up to anyone connected with you or follows you. That’s why a large group of connections can be so powerful. Having your article viewed by your target group of potential leads, customers & readers. When you publish something people see it in their notification bar. Not sure when to post your content? According to Fannit the best times to post are between 7-8am and 5-6pm Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Source Neil Patel
How LinkedIn can help your business
LinkedIn just announced they now have over 450 million users. And Microsoft recent purchase of this social media platform is sure to have it positioned as a real contender for social media marketing budget. Here the main core features.
- Activity shared on your LinkedIn page and viewed by others, depending on the settings chosen. This includes group membership, comments, profile changes and application downloads. It will show when you change your profile, make recommendations or follow companies, etc.
- Ads. LinkedIn has targeted ads which enable you to post pay-per-click ads to target users by their role. They can be text ads or video ads which can be AB tested to find the most effective ad creative and message.
- Advanced Search. You can find influencers to connect with using this approach rather than standard search which works best for known connections.
- Company Page. A page on LinkedIn where a company can list their products and services (via Showcase Pages) and share promotions, news and content through Status updates. More recent than Facebook brand pages and less widely used. We cover the best way to setup a profile in Step 1 of the guide.
- Showcase Pages. – Products and Services
- Connections. Members in your network on LinkedIn who you invited or have invited to connect with and follow.
- Contact info. Links to your websites are available in the Contact Info section of your profile.
- Endorsements. These are endorsements for skills on individual profiles.
- Followers. LinkedIn members can follow companies to keep up to date of their activity which will be displayed in your LinkedIn Home page in personal settings. You can choose to unfollow them by selecting ‘Profile Following’ and ‘Unfollow’.
- Group. A separate community discussion area created to discuss and share information around a topic.
- InMail. A paid membership service which enables you to send a message to members you are not connected with.
- Network and connections. Your network is the people you contact through your connections, consisting of 1st degree, 2nd degree and 3rd degree connections including members of our groups. 1st degree: people you have chosen to connect with; 2nd degree: contact of a 1st degree connection i.e. a friend of a friend. To connect, request an introduction through your 1st degree connection. 3rd degree: contact of your 2nd degree connection.
- Plugins. Use these widgets available from the LinkedIn developer page to embed content from LinkedIn on your site or blog to encourage interaction on LinkedIn.
- Contacts. A enabling you to better manage the contacts in your network You can add notes to profiles, such as how you met and even add reminders so you remember to contact them at a later date. You can tag profiles and save them for later viewing.
- Profile page. The home page for an individual member where they can summarize their career and information shared on LinkedIn. There are ‘public’ and ‘private settings’.
- Recommendations. Short written reviews of individuals from colleagues, customers or other partners.
- Skills. LinkedIn Skills shows the popularity of different roles and examples of the most followed net-workers within them.
- Tags.Categorize your connections, so that you can follow-up with them using a message.
- LinkedIn Pulse LinkedIn Today highlights the most popular updates on specific topics, so is useful for keeping up-to-date and finding content worthwhile sharing.
- Updates. Status updates are available via the company page and member’s pages, for members to share advice, stories and opinions of interest with their connections. In company accounts, followers can be targeted by Industry, size, job function, seniority and location, employees and / non employees and statistics are available on the engagement with the posts. To post a status, this can be only action-ed from your Home Page.
- URL. When editing the profile summary you can add a URL for some web services like Slideshare, WordPress and YouTube.
- Widgets. Widgets help you integrate LinkedIn with your website or blog. Encourage people to connect with individuals or share your content through sharing widgets.
- Filter Emails: Instead of selecting emails to a group of connections by a specific criteria such as geography or industry, this has been replaced. You need to tag your lists and can email a max of 50 connections.
- Talent Updates: For paid members, recruiters can search beyond their connections to find candidates and can also add Sponsored Job Listings
- LinkedIn Publisher: This feature allows LinkedIn members to publish blogs on the platform, and their connections will get a notification when it is published. If a blog does extremely well and is shared and viewed many times in a short period it may feature in LinkedIn pulse.
- LinkedIn changes groups, so members can post without permission from group admins.
- 30-second videos from LinkedIn Influencers.
- Integrating LinkedIn and Yahoo mail.
- Publisher continues to expand to new markets
Different types of LinkedIn Ads
When you advertise on LinkedIn you can use two different ad types. Display Sponsored Ads and Text Ads
Sponsored Content Ads are related to content you sponsor that appears in the news feed of you target
This can be a great form of advertising when you want to promote content in your marketing efforts. Different campaigns like HubSpot have claimed 400% increases in leads using this type of promotion. Depending on your target market then can also be a more cost effective way of reaching your audience compared to other social networking channels
Lets Look at some Text Ads now
All you really need to do here is focus on your ad copy and images. It’s also quite easy to test multiple variations of ads to see which one are performing the best.
Although you will pay more money for ads on LinkedIn because it is basically a B2B platform. This type of targeting can in fact make your return on investment better than lower priced Social Media channels.
Creating LinkedIn Ads
Go to https://www.linkedin.com/ad/accounts and select the campaign that you want. (If you want to run Sponsored Content Ads, you’ll need a Showcase page)
A Direct Sponsored Content, you can create content from within the Campaign Manager.
Now lets look at a ‘Text Campaign’ (this info can also be applied to Sponsored Content Ads.)
- Go back to https://www.linkedin.com/ad/accounts/ and select Text Ads. (You don’t need a company page for LinkedIn Text Ads.)
- Give your campaign a name and select your language.
- Now create your ad, using the tips we covered earlier.
- Once your ad is created you have the option to create some ad variations (for split testing your campaign)
- Now you can target your ad based on the buyer persona (LinkedIn will help you better target your ad and provide you some suggestions
- You can also select audience expansion (optional – gives you the opportunity to target lookalike audiences to the ones you are currently targeting
- Now set your bid (minimum is $2.00)
- Approve your campaign and wait for LinkedIn to approve your ad
- Of course you will want to monitor your ads progress and optimize it to maximize your ROI (click for PDF)
Google+ Online Marketing Guide
Google+ features that can help you to market your business in numerous ways, whether it’s to engage with customers, increase brand exposure, find quality leads, influencers or just attract readers to your post. Lets look at the unique features that you have access to when using Google+ to market your business:
- Circles: allow you to segment your entire contact list into different categories, if you want, you can have a circle for family, a coworkers and one for friends. It’s even more helpful in business since it allows you to segment your followers into different demographics.
- Google+ Communities: Like Facebook Groups or LinkedIn Groups, Google+ Communities feature is pretty much the same. Communities are just like Groups – they consist of a group of members joined together by one subject.
- Google+ Collections: A relative new come to the feature list, this allows you to group together content. For example, say you sell real estate. You can use Collections to create separate collections of all of your real estate-oriented content and your community-oriented content.
- Google+ Hangouts: Live video chats that can be used for any number of things, from interviews and meetings to webinars and Q and A sessions. They are a fantastic way to engage with your user base and generate more interest in your brand.
- Google+ Local: Allows you to set up a page that includes your physical location, business type and a lot more. The advantage of setting up a Google+ Local page is that it can help boost local search rankings, making your business easier to find on both Google+ and Google by consumers within your area.
- Google+ Advertising: Is PPC (pay per click) advertising feature that allows you advertise on Google’s search engine. You choose a keyword and bid on that keyword. When a user searches for that keyword, your ad pops up on their search results page. Lots of marketers use this to drive sales into their business.
You can use Google Adwords on your Google+ page as well.
- Google+ Analytics: To get the absolute most out of Google+ you need to know how it’s performing.
The best way to do this is using the analytics tools built for Google+ here are a few of them.
Insights: – Located in the Google+ Dashboard, Insights provides an overview of your Google+ page over the last 30 days with things like number of views, number of post actions, share activity, comments and number of new followers.
Google Analytics: Also on the Google+ Dashboard, Analytics will provide you with the number of website page views, the number of unique visitors your page has received, the number of new website visits etc.
Steady Demand:will do an audit of your Google+ page and provide you with valuable information like peak times for best mentions and engagement. It can also inform about any issues with any of the posts you make on Google+ and tell you how your updates are performing, as well it can provide suggestions on how to improve the quality of your posts.
SumAll: This tool compares the performance of your Google+ page to any other social media page you have and is quite useful because it gives you the chance to see what’s what is attracting your target audience to each social media network you have.
Best times to post: Between 9-10am (Wednesday is peak)
Worst times to post: Mornings before 9am and in the evening (usage is way down)
How to Create a YouTube Channel
YouTube is the biggest video search engine in the known universe, so using it for advertising can bring your products and services in front of a massive amount of eyeballs, resulting in more profits and a better awareness for your brand.
Owned by Google, advertising on it just works so well with Google’s other like AdWords, Google + and search.