How To Get More Qualified Leads From Your Website

DRIVE RELEVANT WEBSITE TRAFFIC

In Tampa (and all over the globe!) there are several ways to drive traffic (SEO, paid search, social media) to your website and they all work; however, I challenge you to think about where you go when you don’t know the answer to something. This is about marketing smarter, not harder. If you’re like 68% of the population, you turn to Google (the rest use Bing or Yahoo) and you fling some words — hoping for some useful information in return — out into the internet. As a local business owner, this is when it counts to appear in the search results! They’re out there searching for you and if you aren’t there you are missing potential leads.

The best way to drive QUALITY traffic is through search engine marketing. Both paid search and SEO tactics will drive relevant traffic to your website. If the budget allows, you’ll get more quality traffic by using a strategy that employs both.

USE APPROPRIATE LANDING PAGES

Repeat after me, “my home page is not the place for campaign traffic, my home page is not the place for campaign traffic!” Got it? Okay, now let me explain why.

When people go online to research a product or service, they are generally trying to get a fairly specific question answered. One of the worst experiences an online user can have is clicking on a link and being directed to a page that doesn’t deliver the content they were expecting. So often, small businesses don’t have the resources to create dedicated landing pages for their online campaigns. As a result, they send all of their online traffic to their home page and guess what, THIS TRAFFIC NEVER CONVERTS into leads. That’s because they were looking for very specific information and you just dumped them into a page that gives them a list of absolutely everything you do. Implement a campaign and dedicated landing page strategy and your conversions will go up.

The best thing you can do is write clear ad copy and then use the landing page (that includes a form) to capture information on the person who is viewing your content.

OFFER HELPFUL CONTENT

The aforementioned relevant content must also be helpful to your audience. Early in the “research” phase, your potential customers have not yet determined that they can’t, in fact, do it themselves. They are merely researching and still trying to do things themselves for the cheapest price possible. To draw them in, you need to be helpful enough to make them trust you but not so helpful that they no longer need you.This is a very fine line to walk but those who do it well, thrive. A great example is the broken down, “how to” list which you see all the time—pay attention! *Pro tip: the more in depth you make the how to list, the more inherent need you build for your product or service.

 

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Understanding The New Instagram Algorithm

Instagram is a popular social media platform for sharing photos and videos. If you have Instagram, you likely have realized that there have been some noticeable changes recently. The most obvious was the logo change that took place a couple months ago. In addition to the logo change, a couple changes were made that affect how you post and market using Instagram.

MIMICKING FACEBOOK

Instagram’s news feed has moved away from showing things in chronological order and now shows content based off an algorithm, similar to Facebook. What does this algorithm do you ask? The algorithm will calculate which posts they think you want to see most and put them at the top of your newsfeed. Let me give you an example.

IG Account A: This person is your friend who has a hundred followers and receives roughly 40-50 likes per post. Most of the time when they post, you are almost always engaging with their photo by either liking or commenting on the picture.

IG Account B: This person is either a brand or celebrity that you follow. They have thousands of followers and receive hundreds of likes and comments. However, you never engage with any of their photos, you just follow them.

Between both accounts, Account B published their content 2 hours ago, and Account A published their content 10 hours ago. So next time you open up Instagram, the algorithm will see that you interact with Account A a lot more than Account B and put Account A’s post ahead of “Account B’s” post even though “Account B” posted more recently. The reason they do this is because Instagram wants is prioritizing content to show users information that they are most likely to be interested in. So even though Account B receives a lot more engagement from other users and has more followers, the algorithm only takes into account the things you engage with.

Like the logo, there has been backlash on the algorithm update because most Instagram users usually know the last photo they saw. If they haven’t opened the app in 6 hours, they know they have 6 hours of photos to scroll through. Once they see the photo that they saw the last time they were on Instagram, they know they are all caught up. This algorithm has frustrated some users because they want to see every post in their feed, not just what’s the app thinks is relevant.

So if you are a business using Instagram to build your brand, you will need to be more strategic with the content you post. Your content must make the user engage with your post. How can you do this? Use call to actions. For example, “Double-tap if you agree”, “Let’s hear your story”, etc.

ENGAGEMENT AFFECTS YOUR POST POSITION

Instagram is also allowing you to see how many people viewed the videos you post and will allow you to see how many likes specifically from those who viewed the video. This is a great addition that Instagram added because now you will be able to see the reach the video received versus the engagement. So next time you post a video and see that it received hundreds of views but only 20% of those views liked the video, you will know that you need a more engaging video. This will help with marketers make more strategic decisions and see what videos are working versus which ones are not.

If you are using Instagram to grow your brand, you need to start being more strategic with the content you post. Now it’s not enough to just post once a day when your users are most likely to be there, you must ensure that your content is engaging (which any content you post on any platform should be anyways) since likes and comments are more important than ever on Instagram if you want to be seen.

 

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Do You Truly Understand Your Customers?

I ask this question because so often, people really don’t know who their ideal customer is. From a marketing standpoint, this is a death sentence! (Okay, maybe that’s a little harsh but you get my point!)

DEFINE WHO YOU WANT TO WORK WITH

You’ll take business from anyone but is that what you really want? Wouldn’t you rather work with people who are qualified to be your customers? I invite you to stop and think about your ideal customer for a few minutes and then ask yourself these questions:

  • What are their biggest challenges?
  • What keeps them up at night?
  • What do they do in their spare time?
  • Where do they get their information?
  • Who do they trust?
  • How is their success measured?
  • What does their typical day look like?

Then, think about your marketing efforts. Are they designed to speak to that person or are they more general?

HOW TO MAKE IT WORK FOR YOU

Now, you’re probably wondering why all of this matters! It matters because, in order to craft content that speaks to your audience, you have to understand them in a very deep way. Writing content that solves their biggest problems is one of the most efficient ways to build trust with your target audience. Everything you do, starting with your website and SEO tactics, should be crafted in a way that truly speaks to your ideal customer. For someone to do business with you, first they have to find you (most likely through the Internet) which means your keyword buys and SEO need to match what your clients are searching for. Next, they have to deem your product and/or services valuable. Writing content that solves their biggest problems is one of the most efficient ways to build trust with your target audience. It takes time and patience to build this level of trust with your prospective customers but the time and effort you put in on the front end will be well worth it in the long run.

 

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How You Can Use Long Tail Keywords Strategically To Reach Your Goals

Your website is created and now you have an online presence. Next thing to do is start driving traffic/leads to your site. How do you do this? Well one way is to launch a PPC campaign. One of the first steps in launching a PPC campaign  is to figure out which keywords make the most sense for you to target. The Google Keyword Planner is a great tool for initial research, I recommend starting there! The Keyword Planner tool is going to present you a lot of generic keyword terms or as some would say, short tail keywords. Depending on your campaign, short tail keywords can be efficient for what you are trying to accomplish. In this article I will tell you the pros and cons of long vs short tail keywords.

LONG TAIL KEYWORDS

PROS:

  • Less competition which leads to higher click-through-rate (CTR)
  • Fewer people bidding on the long tail keywords which means it costs less to achieve higher rankings
  • the longer the keyword the more likely your ad will show in the top page rankings
  • The longer the keyword the higher the conversion rate because the ad is more relevant to what the person searched

CONS:

  • Because long tail keywords help drive conversions, they aren’t going to drive a ton of traffic to your site. But, the traffic you do get will be much more likely to convert. Buying long tail keywords should be part of a larger strategy.
  • Long tail keywords take more time to find the right words for your campaign. You have to really understand your audience and their search intent with long tail keywords.
  • While long tail keywords will result in high conversion rates, they won’t happen that often!

SHORT TAIL KEYWORDS

PROS:

  • Short tail keywords are great for driving as much traffic as possible to your site.
  • Depending on your budget (which better be high if you want to buy short tail keywords) you can pick the most suitable keywords for your campaign because you will have plenty to choose from

CONS:

  • Short tail keywords can drive the wrong type of traffic, leading to a higher bounce rate.
  • Your conversion rate will be low but if the purpose is to drive traffic and brand awareness then the traffic to the site will make up for the lower conversion rate.
  • The cost-per-click (CPC) will be much higher since there is more competition for the words.
  • You shouldn’t run a niche campaign using short tail keywords as they can be very pricey and not as beneficial. To be at the top of search results with short tail keywords you must spend more to rank higher

Now that you know the pros and cons of long and short tail keywords, let me provide you with a quick example to help you better understand.

Short tail keyword –  “men’s shoes.” This is a very generic word, and big retail stores will be bidding on this keyword. If you have the budget and can bid on this keyword, you will drive a lot of traffic and users will browse your website and see the variety of shoes you have to offer.

Long tail keyword: men’s nike basketball shoes. With this keyword, it is a lot more specific to what the user is looking for, which in return will lead to a higher conversion rate.

A key thing to remember with both short and long tail keywords is that whichever keyword you use, that keyword must link to the specific page that matches the keyword. So for “men’s shoes” the ad must link to the section of the website with men’s shoes. For “men’s nike basketball shoes,” the ad must link to the section of the website that sells men’s basketball shoes and shows only the Nike brand.

Both short and long tail keyword strategies work.  Determining which to use should be based on your campaign goals, audience and budget.

 

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Customer Journeys & Capitalizing on Micro-Moments

Micro-moments, a concept recently introduced by Google, are high-intent short bursts of activity when consumers turn to their mobile devices to quickly access information (i.e., watch a “how-to” video) or take action (i.e., find the nearest Starbucks). Marketers must learn how to reach consumers during these high-intent micro-moments by providing their customers with the information they want, when they want it, and how they want it.

How Search Influences The New Customer Journey

The customer journey has become a nonlinear path of micro-moments that ultimately lead to a purchase. Oftentimes, search is at the beginning of this journey, but for higher-consideration purchases, search can also play a significant role in assisting the customer along their journey.

For example, someone looking to buy a new mid-size SUV may begin their journey by searching “top 10 mid-size SUVs,” followed by a search for customer reviews of the specific mid-size SUVs they’re interested in. This narrows their consideration set down to a few vehicles, and they search for the nearest dealerships for those particular SUVs, so they can test drive each vehicle and make a decision.

In this scenario, the consumer performs three distinct searches to move along the purchase path, and this may take place over a few days, few weeks, or even months. While there are other influences that may affect the buyer’s decision in this scenario, such as brand reputation or friends and family, the buyer turns to search when they’re ready to find specific information in these micro-moments that helps them narrow down their selection and move further along the path to buying a car.

Taking Advantage of Micro-Moments with Search

Search is a key channel for brands to leverage in order to take advantage of micro-moments. Consumers have become accustomed to reaching for their smartphones and searching for answers when they have questions. Brands have to make sure they’re present and able to answer consumers’ questions during these moments.

In order to do this, brands must understand and be there for the key moments in which their customers make decisions that push them further along the path to purchase. For example, home builders must understand that home buyers want to see virtual tours before visiting a model, or a hair care product line should know that their customers like to see how-to videos for different hairstyles before buying their hair product, or a car manufacturer knows customers want to see 360-degree views of a car’s interior before taking a trip down to the dealership. Consider the fact that 69 percent of online consumers’ perception of a brand is influenced by the quality, timing, or relevance of the brand’s message.

Conclusion

Brands that learn how to provide their customers with the information they want in these micro-moments will gain a significant competitive advantage as consumer behavior becomes increasingly reliant on mobile devices, expectations become greater, and attention spans become shorter.
 

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3 Easy Ways To Use Twitter to Your Benefit

Twitter is still somewhat of a mystery for many business owners and marketing directors. From figuring out how many times a day to post to writing engaging content and understanding hashtags,Twitter can seem like a full-time job. If you’re like most, you have a Twitter handle and you occasionally post or maybe you’re the king of retweeting others’ content but you have yet to nail down a solid strategy for increasing engagement through Twitter. Here are three ways you can maximize engagement.

LATCH ON TO TRENDING HASHTAGS

When you log into your Twitter account, look to the left sidebar. It’s a barometer of what’s happening in Twitter land! These are the hashtags that people are using most often on any given day which also means, people are searching these hashtags. You can give your brand more visibility by appearing in the feed when someone clicks on a trending hashtag. Make sure you draft your Tweet in a way that makes sense because randomly using trending hashtags isn’t enough!

REPOST YOUR CONTENT EVERY 8 HOURS

One of the biggest mistakes we see businesses make is only posting once a day. While it does help you appear to be active if someone makes it to your page, it doesn’t help ensure that your followers actually see your content. Twitter users rarely scroll through their entire feed which means posting more frequently increases the likelihood of your post being seen.

ENGAGE WITH THOSE WHO MENTION YOU

So often, businesses have a very one-sided social media strategy. The power of social media is that it allows you to have a real-time conversation with your prospective customers. If they’re tweeting at you, respond. It shows that you care about your customers!

Happy Tweeting!

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