People are searching in different ways.
And every few months, humans are rethinking how we create and serve content based on user behavior - and we are.
With Siri, Google Voice, Alexa, and Google Home, the rate of adapting to these recent features has been crazy and by 2020, it is expected that 50% of all the searches will likely be carried out via voice.
Voice search actually allows users to speak into a device as opposed to typing keywords into a search query to generate results and find out what they are looking for.
Voice technology uses speech identification to understand what users are trying to say with extreme accuracy. After a few moments, it will deliver results spoken orally to the user.
Although it seems like a fresh idea, voice search technology has been used by most users for a while. Programs such as speech-to-text and voice dialing are great samples of voice search.
Additionally, programs such as Google Assistant, Siri, Microsoft Cortana and Amazon Alexa are all utilizing voice search capabilities.
Although particular devices can be optimized for voice search, mobile brands, platforms and websites can be optimized for it as well.
Voice search largely improves user experience and because of that, by the year 2020, half of all online searches will be made through voice search.
Due to its prolific use, search engines such as Google are placing a higher emphasis on voice SEO.
After all, the point of SEO is to rank websites accurately so users can find the best information for their search query as quickly as possible. User experience is, ultimately, at the forefront of search engine optimization.
Last January 2018, an estimation of one billion voice searches was tracked every month, which proves that voice search is really on the rise.
By 2020, half of the searches will be carried by voice. So by 2020, half of your potential shoppers won't see your website even if you're ranked fourth in the SERPs.
But it is necessary to remember that voice search SEO and traditional website SEO are two different methods.
Therefore, some circumstances that affect website rankings may or may not have the same impact on voice search – and vice versa.
Luckily, there are some suggestions that can help you match the two SEO strategies and rank your website for search listings and audio search.
First, we have to recognize how popular voice search is actually becoming.
As stated above, voice search is projected to be 50% of all searches by 2020, but what’s more stunning is that 30% of web browsing sessions will be done without a screen in 2020.
Can you imagine that?
This means not only do we have to show up when people are using voice search, but our content has to be optimized for users who search without a screen.
But you don’t have to wait until 2020 to see how successful voice search is.
In 2016, Google announced that 20% of mobile queries were by voice. Since then we have seen that number increase. There were 1 billion voice searches in January of 2018 alone.
Saying “voice search is coming” has quickly become outdated.
We are living in a world where we are completely surrounded by devices that support voice assistants and always-on microphones that are just waiting for their trigger words to answer our most burning questions.
We live in a digital world and it is important to keep up with the trends, especially for marketers and entrepreneurs like you.
Voice assistants are everywhere which means voice search is everywhere.
Because of this, we are seeing users search using different queries, and asking questions in different ways.
Searches are becoming more human and queries are longer, with more conversational words.
So here are our Top 5 Strategies for optimizing your website to be voice search-friendly.
Audio Search significantly improves user experience – and because of that, by the year 2020, half of all online searches will be made through voice search.
Due to its prolific use, search engines such as Google are placing a higher emphasis on voice search optimization.
After all, the point of SEO is to rank websites accurately so users can find the best information for their search query as quickly as possible. User experience is, ultimately, at the forefront of search engine optimization.
When users use voice search, they are usually hoping to complete an activity – such as playing a song or purchasing a product – or wants to get information on a particular subject.
When users search for content on desktop or mobile, they tend to communicate in short, almost bullet-pointed phrases.
Just like if a user wanted to find a great web designer, they could type “top web design companies” into Google.
But if they used voice search, a user might say “Who are the top web design companies in the world?”
To ensure that your content is optimized for voice search as well, include those long-tail keywords that sound more natural as opposed to shorter, more active keywords that perform well in desktop SEO.
Just like traditional search engine optimization, Google voice search supports websites that load quickly.
Admit it. Even to ourselves. When the wesbite loads like a turtle, we hit the back button and search for better results that can give us the details quickly.
Website speed is really important.
When you evaluate the speed of your website,
Keep phrases short and simple. Voice search results are typically written at a 9th-grade reading level at most. So, although your information may be high-level, break it down in a way that is easy for anyone to comprehend.
22% of voice search queries are looking for location-based content. Therefore, brands have a higher chance of producing voice search content if they invest in local content.
Try using phrases like “near me”
“I really don’t understand why I need to keep up with the trends in SEO”
Well your customers and your potential customers are also searchers in the web.
Keeping you in-the-know when it comes to what to do and not to do when it comes to optimizing a site can be rather tedious.
This is because you will need to constantly search the web for updates, news, and even rumors about algorithm changes, new best practices, and so on.
But know that it will be worth it.
The ones who rank are those who are always being up to the game.
Of course, you will still need to know whether or not the trends that you are reading are indeed worth implementing on your pages.
Besides, all these are for your website, for your brand, for the quality fo your content and for your living.
In fact, one study found that voice search eCommerce resulted in $1.8 billion in Amazon revenue. That figure alone is expected to increase to $40 billion by the year 2022.
You can check out our Guide to Voice Search Optimization for more information on this topic.
Firstly, a landing page is totally different from a home page. To make things clearer, a landing page is a page that someone “lands” on right after clicking on one of your ads. Similarly, a landing page serves a specific purpose, typically promotes a specific product or service, and has a clear Call-To-Action. On the other hand, a homepage is the starting point to the rest of the site’s content. In other words, a homepage typically serves many purposes and includes navigation to other website pages. Basically, there are two kinds of landing pages: microsites and standalone landing pages.
A microsite landing page is a small or condensed website usually created as a supplement to the main website. It is usually focused on one product or service line as opposed to all the products or services offered by the business.
Another is a Standalone landing page include; Click Through, Lead Capture, Lead Gen, and Squeeze Pages.
This guide from Highmark Digital is written for anybody who is searching for ways to improve landing page strategies.
To start off, a landing page has a sole purpose --- to gain sales or to keep the potential customer glued to your site until he/she decides to subscribe to your mailing list or purchase your product/service. So how do you achieve that goal? I’ve got one answer for you!
Start optimizing your landing pages.
By definition, landing page optimization (LPO) promotes lower customer acquisition costs while achieving a higher acquisition rate and maximizing the value of your ad spend.
To get you started with this topic, why don’t we start talking about the DON'TS of LPO.
NEVER SEND TRAFFIC FROM AN AD TO YOUR HOMEPAGE
That’s right! Don’t waste your money by sending traffic from an ad to the home page. It’s a big NO-NO. Why not focus on the single-goal landing page for your promotional campaigns? This is much more effective than bombarding your visitors with far too many questions right at the outset.
"CLARITY" AND "RELEVANCE" CAN MAKE OR BREAK YOUR LANDING PAGE.
Never ignore the clarity of purpose as well as the relevant content of your landing page. When you overlook these factors, visitors are most likely going to leave the site confused, dissatisfied or annoyed. Every ad holds a purpose. So make it count. Hence, help your visitors find exactly what they are looking for. You must be able to answer the questions running on their mind in a split second.
What questions are we talking about? Here:
Furthermore, having good lead magnets (i.e. free trials) in return when you need them to share their email addresses is a good technique.
So how to build one? Read on if you want to learn more!
1. Open with a benefit-oriented headline.
To begin with, your headline should be attention-grabbing. This section is your top priority because this is where you create that “first impression” for your visitors. Certainly, if the headline isn’t that attractive, visually and content-related itself, then the rest of the site will likely be ignored.
2. Write clear, relevant, and concise copy.
Next, your copy should be reasonably short but must be enough to educate your readers about your product or service. A bulleted list of the needed information never fails.
3. Focus on getting visitors to take one specific action.
Then, if you want your visitors to get a free trial or subscribe to your newsletter, make that as the only button available on the page. As a result, this would enable them to focus on that button alone.
4. Remove all extra clutter—links, menus, buttons—that have nothing to do with the particular ad or campaign.
Moving on, do the previous step (No.3) without any other distracting options that might potentially sidetrack the visitors or might discourage them further. To cut it short, make everything as simple as possible.
5. Make the form or checkout option prominent.
Now, make use of bigger font sizes or better yet, display a good lead magnet (a discount offer or free trial) to lure them into clicking the checkout button.
6. Maintain your brand.
Finally, the overall look of your landing page design must be consistent. This is to make sure visitors immediately identify and associate what they see with your brand. What we’re trying to say is, you should use the same color hues and other design elements from your homepage to your landing page.
In this section, let’s discuss the 5 planning stages of a landing page before handing them over to your designer.
1. Identify your audience.
Initially, if you want to boost your conversion rate, you must first know your targeted audience. How? You can identify them by doing surveys or interviews. In this way, it would be easier to carve out your other plans because you already know the profile of your targeted audience.
2. Define your most-wanted action (MWA)
What does MWA mean? For everybody's knowledge, this pertains to the one action visitors should take when they are on the landing page. Particularly, this action is really all up to your product and approach. Pretty sure, if you’re selling a quite expensive product/service, it is best to collect contact information first (email perhaps) and cultivate the relationship right then and there. However, if you’re offering something that’s generally affordable and uncomplicated, you can go ahead and sell it directly perhaps. But if it’s technology-based, you can do free trials first.
3. Define your message.
So, you’ve got all the basics. Primarily, you now know who you are advertising for and which solution to offer. At this point, it is time to draft your message. Likewise, these are the words you put into the page. Hence, keep it simple and easy to understand.
4. Design your landing page.
Moving onto the visuals. Straight away, sketch it all out on paper or anny editing tool. Yet, don’t overdo this. Because if you do, only fewer visitors will fill out the form if you’re asking for too much information. Besides you’ve put too much navigation on your page, this would utterly confuse visitors as a consequence. Nevertheless, if you keep a streamlined process, you have higher chances of getting the forms filled out.
5. Put it all together.
It's just like building your whole lego house. You’ve got all the needed blocks in your hands and all you have to do is fuse them all together to make a solid lego structure. In the same manner, all the steps are presented to you, all you have to do now is connect all the dots. The correct message, the visuals and the preview are all done. At long last, launch it on the web!
Step #4 can be challenging for some, as designing is not everybody’s forte.
To back you up, here are the most important characteristics an Optimized Landing Page should have:
Even more, if a landing page only has very few components, each part should be carefully built.
Why you should dedicate time for testing
Testing your landing pages are important!
Definitely, it's not going to be a walk in the park, but it’s all worth it.
You have to spend a significant amount of time determining discrepancies on your landing page, at the same time, think of a better and more effective alternative.
Naturally, there are three kinds of landing page testing that you can do.
You can do Split Test first, then A/B test, and lastly Multivariate Test.
A piece of advice about testing: Experiment with as many variables as possible and as often as you can to ensure the final version you’re offering is optimized for maximum returns.
Let’s try to evaluate a couple of Landing Pages on the internet and see what we can do better.
1. Services are summarized in bullet forms.
2. A sample report is offered before purchasing.
3. Less navigation links.
4. Friendly looking mascot for added fun.
5. Company Logo is displayed.
1. Headline needs more emphasis. (e.g. Bigger font size, use a more catchy phrase)
2. Looks highly technical for an average visitor.
3. Bottom texts are too small to be read.
1. Call to action is prominent.
2. Clear branding.
3. Headline is simple but hits the bullseye.
1. Add an image product.
2. Get Started can be ambiguous. Use a more specific one. (e.g. Free Trial, Sales call etc.)
3. Put a summarized description of the product in bullet forms.
It’s not always enough that a visitor subscribes to your offer or email. It doesn’t end there. The ultimate goal is to fully convert these subscribers to actual purchasers. It’s not a guarantee that subscribers would even stay active after signing up forms.
However, what’s important is getting them started where they should be -- their willingness to share their contact information. That’s already a good start. And when you top it all off with some helpful optimization tips, you are more likely to have higher chances of conversion rates and increased sales prospects.
This is why you should pay attention to building your landing pages and we hope that this article helped you enlighten some of the most important components of an effective landing page.
A high-quality landing page that will convert leads has several major components that are similar to what you would see on a web page.
So take note of these tips and go build a page that is specifically designed to receive and convert traffic from your online marketing campaign.
Do you know that the number one reason why businesses fail is because of the absence of good marketing strategy? Part of a good marketing strategy should developing great content. As they say, content is king. If you want to build a sustainable brand reputation, you definitely need to put a lot of effort to come up with strategic content. Or better yet use these 10 savvy types of content marketing that can help you grow your business.
Effectively, when you are writing your blogs, try to make sure that you are writing about what the audience wants to read and learn about. Bare in mind, your audience would usually read to look for solutions, seek new information or just for the heck of reading something. Hence, it’s important to make the content as informative as you can and as specific as possible.
Apple and Spotify are two of the most popular podcast sources. They are a great and dependable medium to take your podcast anywhere around the globe. Here are some interesting stats that you should know about podcasts:
Once a podcast is done, passing around its recorded version wouldn’t be that hard. You can even showcase it in your articles and video logs. That’s a sure hit to integrate your podcast marketing!
Particularly, the Millennial audience are quite fascinated over product reviews, travel vlogs, unboxing and tutorials. Short and thought provoking video content increases brand awareness. On the other hand, tutorial videos or product demos greatly influence the audience's purchasing decisions.
The science behind the catchy effect of infographics relies on how human brains function. We are visual creatures. Needless to say, we easily understand a certain subject by seeing the actual physical elements. That’s where infographics comes in.
Therefore, leveraging graphics to your content marketing strategy is a must! Do it creatively. Here’s a pro tip: you must pair them up with a well-written text. Now this is what we call a powerful duo. If both used correctly, you create a compelling tool to help you get out from the information wilderness and into your targeted audience’s brains.
What streaming video does best is letting your brand display transparency. It has more of a human-to-human connection. It features live commenting capabilities, which allows users to participate directly to the stream.
But before going live, you have to figure out who you are trying to connect with first and ask yourself whether you are equipped enough to satisfy your audience. If not, you can invite someone else to join in. Most importantly, just be yourself. Bring out your funny or weird side to keep your audience hooked. Lastly, promote it. Tell your audience to share your recorded livestream video to their social media profiles in order to reach more viewers.
Case studies are basically online marketing campaigns fueled by your customer’s stories. What is more, they help leads to better understand how your brand can add value to their lives or businesses. Real-life examples are legit. Also, finding out some stories of success would help you build the trust that you need from your audience. Usually, people today appreciate more authentic stories.
You can launch your case studies on your company website, or your social sites. Don’t fret, case studies are inexpensive compared to explainer videos. Just make sure you work with customers or clients who are willing to provide not only their permission to be used as the subject of the case study but also some quotes and statistics that show how your business has helped them flourish.
However, it’s crucial to know that when you try eBooks for your content marketing, it does require a bit more of an investment. They take time to complete and a whole team of experts to arrange the ideas accurately. However, don’t let this frighten you off from making effective eBook content. The leads that you will produce through this locked up content will give you an edge. It is going to be worthwhile in the end.
Essentially, social media content does not only influence the purchasing decision of customers, but it is also the key to lead nurturing. You can basically start conversations in your social media posts easily (e.g. commenting, tagging, direct messaging). Actually, engaging them right on the spot will make them feel valuable. In another case, tagging their names and saying thank you's goes a long way.
Generally, whitepapers are promoted through your landing page. If you want to know more about how to design a landing page that easily converts, check out our previous blog How to Build a Landing Page that Converts.
Moreover, you can integrate GIFs and Memes into your Social Media Posts, Blog Content or Email Invites. Besides, they are a playful way to communicate and resonate with the general public. Particularly, they bring that extra kind of excitement and attention that you never attain from person-to-person contact.
Which one of these content marketing types caught your interest? Fortunately, here at Highmark Agency, we've got you covered. If you have no idea how to start tweaking your marketing strategies, we’d like to help you out.
Feel free to contact us on our Facebook or Twitter page. Or head on to our official page.
For assistance with Google Analytics or any other SEO related issues, please contact our SEO agency.
Leading your business to success requires you to take thousands of smaller steps — without error or delay. But that’s an impossible goal to set without any analytics or insights.
In today’s world, data optimization drives every business decision for big companies.
That’s why you need Google Analytics to improve your products and services.
In this post, you’ll learn everything beginners should know about Google Analytics. You’ll understand the importance of the tool, how it can help your business, and how to use it to grow your company.
Let’s get to it.
Google Analytics (GA) is a free analytics tool developed by Google. It’s the most popular web analytics tool and one of the essential tools every business should use to build its online presence.
As a webmaster, GA will give you the option to monitor your traffic and understand your visitors. It will also help you optimize your content and improve it to meet their expectations.
The short answer is — absolutely.
Over 30 million companies are using Google Analytics. And that's not because GA is a bandwagon everyone decided to jump on.
Google Analytics will bring you proven results.
Aside from it being free and super easy to use, the tool offers a variety of features that no other online tool can grant you.
For example, it will collect data from your website then generate detailed reports that you can access through your account.
That helps you know if your marketing efforts are working and decide on the type of content you should focus on.
Want to know the best part?
Unlike dozens of other tools online, the integration process is as easy as pie.
You can integrate GA to your website with a few clicks. Then, you'll have the option to align it with other tools, such as Google AdWords and Search Console.
But before you can get access to all these great features, you must first set up an account.
Go to Google Analytics sign up page, then click on “Set up for free”.
You must sign in to your Gmail account before you can continue with the registration process. If you don’t already have an account, you can create one in a few minutes.
The first step is to name your account — which isn’t that important.
You can enter your name or the name of your business (if you have many websites). But keep in mind that one GA account can have multiple tracking IDs for different websites.
Then, click “Next”.
Next, you have to select the property you’re going to measure.
In our case, it’s a website. Select it, and click “Next”.
Now, enter your website’s name and URL.
Be sure to select the right industry for your business. That allows Google to put you in the right category with your competitors. Therefore, it will give you more accurate data for comparison in the future.
Once done, click “Create”.
A small box will pop up, asking you to read and agree on the terms of service. When you finish, click “I accept”.
You’ve just finished creating your account!
Next, we’ll link your GA to your website.
Now that your account has been created, Google will give you a tracking code for your website.
In this step, you’ll use that “Tracking ID” to verify ownership of your property.
There are two ways you can verify your property. You can either:
Login to your WordPress admin panel, then go to Plugins >> Add New.
Search for MonsterInsights, and click “Install”.
Once installed, click “Activate”, and you’ll be taken to the launching process.
Pick a category for your website, then click “Save and Continue”.
Now, you’ll connect the plugin with your Google Analytics account.
Select the Gmail account you used to create your GA account.
Then allow MonsterInsights to access your Google account.
Next, select the Google Analytics account that matches your website. (Remember that you can manage multiple sites with one GA account).
Click on “Complete Connection,” and the authentication will be finalized within seconds.
On the next screen, you’ll see the plugin setup page. You have the option to make changes to the settings for your plugins.
Configure the settings as you want then click “Save and Continue”.
On the last page, you’ll get some recommended plugins with pro plans. But, the features offered there won’t make huge changes to your results. You can ignore them by moving to the last step.
Click on “Finish Setup & Exit Wizard”.
Your WordPress website is now successfully linked to your Google Analytics account.
The plugin may take up to 24 hours to generate data and insights — especially if your GA account is new.
You can also add the code manually to your header file inside the “<head>” tag.
We wouldn’t recommend this method if you’re a beginner. (Making a mistake can break the structure of your website.)
To get started, copy the Global Site Tag from the Website Tracking window.
Then, go to Appearance >> Theme Editor.
Now, under Theme Files, click on Theme Header to get access to your header.php file.
Once there, paste your code between the two “<head>” and “</head>” tags, as shown in the picture.
When you’re done, click “Update File”.
Give it a few days, and you’ll start seeing data in your Google Analytics account.
The same technique applies to any other content management system you use.
All you have to do is get access to your header.php file. Then, paste the code with your Tracking ID inside the <head> tag.
Your GA account will be up and running within a few days.
Google Analytics will generate detailed reports for your website's performance using lots of metrics and KPIs. That will help you gain valuable insights about your target audience and how you can improve.
For instance, you can see how many visitors came to your website and the average time they spend on each page.
Other examples of key metrics you'll be able to track include:
To get access to all these metrics, you must first understand the Reports dashboard and how to use it.
But don't worry!
These reports are easy to read and understand for any beginner.
In this section, we’ll cover the most essential three options.
The audience report gives you a detailed overview of your website traffic. It helps you learn crucial information about your website visitors.
Aside from the general overview, you’ll also see:
Demographics: gives you percentages for age, gender, and interests of your users.
Geo: shows the locations and regions your visitors come from — as well as the languages they speak.
Mobile: helps you improve your user-experience by telling what devices your visitors utilize.
This allows you to understand how you’re acquiring new visitors and where your audience is coming from.
You’ll learn which mediums work best for your audience and what marketing channels to focus your efforts on.
Your website traffic will be divided into four categories:
Then, under each category, you’ll also get reports for sources and mediums.
By getting all this data, you can devote more time to focus on marketing on the mediums that are already working.
You’ll also have the chance to revise your strategies and find new traffic sources.
The Behavior report will provide you with essential details about how your users behave when browsing your website.
For example, you’ll get exact numbers for:
By using all these metrics, the tool will sort out your top-performing pages and website sections.
You may then use that listing to double down on your best pages and create more similar content.
Want something more interesting?
Go to Behavior >> Behavior Flow.
You’ll find a complete chart presenting how users are moving through your pages. And you can even display starting points using mediums, pages, sources, etc.
Using this graph, you can work on your internal linking structure and improve your user experience.
You’ve created a Google Analytics account and linked it to your website. And, you also learned some of the basics of GA and what it can be used for.
Give the tool time to gather more data while you keep creating and improving your content.
Now, the real work begins.
You must learn to understand what the metrics are telling you — then look for ways to implement that information into your SEO strategy.
Looking to grow business online with analytics and SEO? We’re happy to help!
Give us a call at 807-890-1909.
Email is one of the most popular means of digital marketing today. It has been around for decades, which makes it an ever-developing strategy that involves lots of trial and error.
You're bound to make lots of mistakes that will cost you time, effort, and money as an email marketer. And that opens doors for your competition to win.
If you're in such a position, don't worry! This guide is for you.
In today's article, we'll learn nine powerful tips to boost your sales with email marketing.
Let's dive in.
Email marketing is a form of digital marketing that uses email to connect with prospects and customers.
It's a great approach to increase brand awareness and boost sales. It's also a brilliant strategy to keep your customers informed of your latest news and offers.
Unlike social media or SEO, your success isn't dependable on any online platform. You'll own the list of subscribers and have permission to reach out to your audience anytime you want.
Email marketing may have lost some of its power throughout the years.
It's not as powerful as it was.
There used to be a time when email open-rates were higher than 95%, and people would read every sentence you wrote.
But as more companies started email marketing, the competition got more intense. People lost interest in checking every email they receive.
The average open-rates for businesses today is as low as 25%.
But despite all that…
Email marketing is still one of the best digital marketing techniques today.
It's 40x more effective in acquiring new customers than Facebook and Twitter combined (McKinsey). And by 2023, there will be 4.3 billion email users online (Statista) — which is half of the world's population.
So, of course!
Email marketing is still effective.
It's a great way to connect with your prospects and promote your brand. And there's a lot of potential for growth and success with emailing for your business.
The first thing to keep in mind when getting started with email marketing is this:
Your emails need to be valuable to your audience.
If all you do is send spammy content or sales letters, followers will lose interest in your content. Your most valuable prospects will unsubscribe from your newsletter.
You must give your audience a reason to click on your emails and read them.
Help your followers transform their lives with your best tips, tricks, and advice. Give them solutions to their problems and keep them updated with the latest trends.
Here are nine actionable tips to succeed with email marketing...
Your target customers are your best bet of selling your products and services.
If you want higher engagement rates and conversions, your email list needs to be unique to your business and offers.
You can't buy or collect emails randomly from the web — neither should you send people emails without their permission.
There are many ways you can collect emails from your prospects and customers.
You can install sign up features and opt-in forms on your websites. You may also promote freebies, samples, or offer gated content on your site.
Whatever you implement, never stop growing your list and attracting new prospects.
Optimizing your sender information is essential if you want to establish trust with your audience and email providers.
Imagine receiving an email from a random email address with no clear brand or company name.
Even if it lands in your inbox folder, there’s very little chance that you’ll ever open it.
The same is true for your email subscribers...
You must use a professional sender’s name along with a branded email address. Be sure to use the same sender information to maintain trust and brand recognition.
The subject line is arguably the most critical part of your email campaign.
Because an email that doesn’t get opened may as well not exist.
You may be able to optimize and refine everything in your email. But if your open rates are low, none of that matters. You’ll miss on great opportunities to connect with your audience.
You need to write captivating subject lines each time you send out a new email.
Here are a few tips to make your email subject lines more appealing:
Your email marketing service provider will allow you to track email opens for each campaign you send.
Test, test, test…
Keep learning about what works best with your audience and double down on it.
People love to read their names on the screen for many reasons.
It makes the interaction feel more genuine and relevant. But more importantly, online consumers love to be treated as individuals.
To personalize your emails:
Use the receiver’s first name in the subject line and copy or send emails based on time and location.
You may also personalize your message by being specific about the prospects’ struggles and challenges. Send them personalized offers and promotions.
You don’t have to get too personal with everyone. Just showing that you care about your followers is enough to capture their attention.
Do you struggle when it comes to writing a compelling email copy?
We'll share with you the most popular copywriting tips you can apply to make your copy more powerful.
Be sure to keep your sentences short and concise. And break down your long paragraphs into smaller sections to increase readability.
Be sure to avoid industry jargon and big words in your copy. Instead, use natural language that everyone can read and understand.
Choose your words carefully, and don't over promise on what you'll deliver. Be honest in everything you say to maintain trust and honesty.
Make sure to stay relevant and send your followers emails they can resonate with.
The last thing you want is for someone to read your email and wonder:
Why am I on this list?
An email marketing campaign doesn't always have to end with a sale. It's part of your sales journey that moves your audience down the funnel.
Yet, moving prospects forward in your buyer's journey isn't a random process.
Never assume that your audience knows what to do next. Giving clear instructions on what action they should take next is a must.
End all your emails with clear CTAs to trigger action.
Be specific about what they should do next, but don't overwhelm them with too many options.
Highlight the benefits they'll get from clicking your link, replying to your email, or visiting a page.
A spam filter is a system designed to detect and stop unwanted emails from reaching the user’s inbox. If an email is marked as spam, it will go to the user’s spam folders where they’ll never see it.
Here are some techniques to keep your emails out of the spam folder:
It's crucial to keep your audience engaged with your brand through consistent content. Therefore, you should send regular updates about your business, exclusive offers, new blog articles, etc.
The whole thing can be hard to manage if you're looking to send multiple emails a week. That's why you need a content schedule for your content marketing plan.
Creating a content calendar for your email marketing is a great way to stay on top of things. It helps plan your content ahead of time and stay organized with your emails.
You can automate the whole thing by using an email marketing service.
The system will send your campaigns at specific times according to schedule. It will target specific segments of your audience based on where they are in the buyer's journey.
We can give you 100 tips to succeed with email marketing today. But without testing, none of that is going to help you.
Businesses, industries, and audiences all differ based on multiple factors.
There isn’t a universal subject line that works for all emails. And there can’t be an ultimate structure to writing emails that works for all campaigns.
You have to test things out through split testing and A/B testing to learn about your audience.
For instance, you must:
But above all...
You have to monitor your email campaigns and identify the changes in your results. Only then will you be able to make well-informed decisions to improve your emails.
Email marketing goes beyond delivering messages to a subscriber’s inbox.
It’s a highly effective way to connect with your prospects and help them solve their problems. And it can be a powerful way to boost sales and attract loyal customers.
Follow the tips in this guide to take your email marketing game to the next level.
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Due to its' importance, Google is often intolerant of anyone using sneaky tactics to beat the system.
There are lots of unanswered questions about the legitimacy of the link building strategies you read online. Many webmasters find themselves out of business overnight due to a backlinking strategy they didn't know was illegal.
That's why it's super crucial for any webmaster to learn about black hat link building and its' effects on SEO. And that's exactly what we're going to teach you in today's guide.
Let's dive in.
Black hat SEO is a set of shady SEO tactics used to improve a site's performance in the SERPs.
These techniques do not comply with search engine guidelines and policies. Thus, they're considered illegal because of how they trick Google to rank higher.
Black hat SEO link building is one of those sneaky techniques. It includes many methods such as PBNs, paid links, blog comments, etc.
We'll explain each one of those later in this article.
But first, lets consider whether black hat backlinking can deliver results.
Black hat SEO link building will always work — until it doesn't.
The promise of fast results and quick rankings is true, for the most part. You can sometimes get your pages to the first page of Google within months from using black hat methods.
You'll get new traffic to your website and see your numbers going up each week.
What many SEOs don't know is that those results are only temporary and can never be sustained. Once search engines identify your links as illegal, you'll lose all your hard work and rankings overnight.
That can happen in a few different ways depending on the nature of those illegal backlinks.
For the most part:
Google may roll out an update that targets spammy backlinks and low-quality content. Such updates are often launched to improve the content quality on the first pages.
That's exactly what happened with the Penguin update in 2012 when Google decided to put an end to illegal links. All websites with unnatural backlinks lost their rankings, allowing for better content to rise to the top.
In other times:
A webmaster may receive a manual Google penalty that explicitly addresses their backlinking profile. That puts the website in a tight situation as Google no longer trusts its' content and backlinks.
In such cases, the site owner will need to submit a reconsideration request to Google.
It may take up to three months for the website to recover from the penalty. Even worse, it will lose most of its' rankings and traffic.
Search engines declared war on spammy links decades ago. Developers have been working hard to put an end to anything that might lead to a negative experience for the user.
Google considers backlinks a reliable measure for high-quality and relevance. After all, link building remains one of the most essential SEO strategies to improve rankings.
So if manipulative links aren't dealt with, they'll have a huge negative effect on search results.
Spammy links are misleading to both Google and its' users.
When someone searches the net for a specific term, they expect to get the best results as quickly as possible.
If some of the top sites offer low-quality content while using spammy backlinks, they'll still get to the top.
As people start noticing how unhelpful the search results are, they'll decide to try out other search engines the next time.
Imagine building a website for your business from scratch and creating awesome content to help your prospective clients.
A competitor following black hat tactics will sometimes rank over you in the SERPs, even when they don't deserve to.
That explains why black hat SEO is illegal and why it's heavily punished by search engines whenever discovered.
As a webmaster working hard to grow your business, you may come across various SEO methods that can help you succeed.
Unfortunately, some of them are unethical and won't work in the long term.
And what's worse?
Google can't tell if you're following those strategies by mistake or on purpose, but either way you'll still be penalized.
Here are five black hat backlinking techniques you must avoid like the plague:
Many webmasters and SEOs are paying to get links from authoritative sites. It's a quick way for them to get a boost in their SERPs rankings and increase traffic.
Such backlinks do work, and they're the hardest to detect by Google since there is no proof for the transaction.
Whether this is done through low-quality guest posting or direct link buying, Google will eventually catch you. And once that happens, your website may never see the light again.
Buying links that pass PageRank is a violation of Google's webmaster guidelines because such links are considered manipulative.
You should never pay high-authority sites to link to your website. Instead, try building genuine relationships with their owners so you can build links ethically.
When a domain name expires, it doesn't lose its' linking authority. Yet, anyone online can buy it and take advantage of its' link power.
So, what does that have to do with private blog networks?
A private blog network (PBN) is a collection of domains owned by a single person or company and used to generate links to a primary domain.
Each of those websites is full of thin, duplicate content that tricks search engines into believing that it's a live site running on fresh content. These PBNs will then be used to create different links to the primary website to boost its' authority.
Black hat SEOs following this method often face the worst ending.
That's because their backlinking profiles are built mainly on a few high-authority sites. So when they get penalized, they lose all the domain authority.
Forum signatures appear below threads or replies that users leave on online forums. Many webmasters use this method to create backlinks by joining industry-related forums.
Most forum owners make their external links "nofollow" to prevent them from passing link juice. That helps them keep signature links to a minimum.
The thing is:
If you include links to your site in your signature, you'll generate hundreds of spammy backlinks. They'll all have the same anchor text and URL, which is a red flag for crawling spiders.
Google has officially stated that forum comments and signature links are a violation of their guidelines.
Most users create them in the hope of increasing their domain strength, which makes them unnatural to search engines.
Stay away from forum signature links to avoid any unnecessary penalties.
There was a time when blog commenting was an effective technique to build backlinks.
All you had to do was find unique blogs to comment on, then write a short comment with a link to one of your web pages. Do that a few dozen times each day, and you'll notice your site ranking better within months.
Search engines were quick to realize the damage caused by such practices. And ever since, links built through blog commenting have lost their SEO value.
Today, spammy blog comments no longer work and are considered a black hat tactic by expert SEOs.
Sites built on free blogging platforms such as Blogger and Blogspot no longer pass link juice to external websites. It's almost impossible to find a Blogspot site ranking on the first page of Google today.
Link exchange has always been an efficient backlinking strategy, especially if you're getting started. You can contact a webmaster in your industry and ask for a link exchange to help both of your businesses grow.
Excessive cross-linking, where links are regularly exchanged between the same two webmasters, will negatively impact their site rankings.
Search engines will detect the cross-linking and penalize both sites for it.
What should you do instead?
Reach out to a few dozen webmasters in your industry for link exchanges.
This method allows you to maintain a diverse backlinking profile. Your inbound links seem more natural, which makes them more appealing to search engines.
Black hat SEO may seem enticing to many site owners, especially if they're just getting started. But getting a penalty from Google is the worst outcome your website can get in today's internet-driven economy.
Avoid the shady methods we discussed in this article. And be sure to read carefully through Google webmaster guidelines to learn more about the dos and don'ts of link building.
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Content marketing is one of the most effective strategies to grow your brand today. Consequently, more companies are competing to take advantage of the opportunities that content marketing has to offer.
Needless to say...
Growing your business through content creation goes beyond publishing a few articles on your blog. It’s a complex process that requires lots of planning and flawless execution.
In this guide, we’ll answer the most important questions you have about content marketing. We’ll also share with you a detailed, step-by-step process to creating a content marketing strategy that delivers.
Let’s jump right in.
Content marketing is a modern marketing approach that focuses on creating the right content for the right audience. One of its key aspects is providing value to the customer through relevant content that is consistently created.
This helps businesses attract quality customers and keep them engaged with their brands.
That's why the biggest companies have adopted content marketing as the ideal strategy to enhance customer loyalty.
A content marketing strategy answers all the questions surrounding your content creation. It goes beyond the type of content you’ll create and focuses on helping you automate the process in the future.
Creating an effective content plan can be a long process and may be hard to accomplish. It will take time, effort, and lots of trial and error.
But once done:
Your content strategy will be much more practical and bring you measurable results.
A solid content plan serves as the roadmap that will guide you to succeed with content marketing.
Here’s the deal:
It's always better to start with a bad plan than to proceed with no plan at all. And it's essential for any business to be clear on its goals and set KPIs it can track right from the start.
Because having a content strategy helps you focus on what matters most for your business. It allows you to track and optimize your progress while gathering and implementing feedback continuously.
That's a vital step to producing better content.
Your content strategy will help keep everyone in your company in alignment with the vision. It will provide you and your team with all the answers you need when creating new content.
So, that will save you a lot of time in the long run.
Let's be completely honest here…
Content marketing used to be a lot easier because there wasn't much competition as there is today. Also, people were new to the internet. So that made them hungrier and more willing to consume any type of content that comes their way.
Things have gotten a bit more difficult.
More and more content is being created every day by companies and individuals all over the world. And customers are more hesitant to consume anything while their attention spans get shorter.
Despite all that, content marketing is still preferred by online consumers.
70% of businesses are actively investing in a content marketing plan (Hubspot). And those efforts are generating 3x more leads compared to other forms of marketing (Demand Metric).
Content marketing works!
There's still room for your brand to adopt content marketing and use it to succeed. It's a sustainable approach to growing a business today because it can still yield results for long years to come.
Any type of content you publish online to attract new clients is an example of content marketing. For instance, the post you're reading now is an informative article we created to generate interest in our brand.
The most famous examples of content marketing are:
There's a wide variety of content marketing options available for your company today. So, you can use any type of content you want to boost brand awareness.
The answer to this question depends on many factors — including your target audience, industry, type of content, marketing channels, etc...
And guess what?
There’s no universal template for all businesses to use when making their content strategy. In fact, it’s important for your content creation strategy to be unique to your goals, objectives, and target demographic.
Your content marketing plan should detail your:
In the rest of this guide, we’ll cover these steps in more depth and explain why each one is important to your strategy.
This step helps you focus on what matters in the long haul.
If you know your goals first, it will be easier to develop an efficient strategy to get you there. But if you have no idea where you're going, you'll never get anywhere.
Businesses strive for different aims based on their business model and execution.
For instance, your company may set the following goals:
No matter what your goals are, be clear on them from the start. That allows you to stay on the path and implement feedback later on.
Keep your objectives quantifiable with tangible metrics and precise numbers.
Instead of saying, "we want to boost conversions", you might say, "we want to increase email sign-ups by +50% before 2021."
This approach allows you to compare your results with more precision later.
You can't succeed with your content marketing without identifying your target audience.
Because value-first content is all about relevance.
If you don't know who you're making content for, you'll never understand their needs and struggles. So that will keep you from creating noticeable work that attracts and converts.
If you're just getting started and don't have much data, identifying your audience based on interests is enough. You'll target a broader audience that's likely to engage with your brand.
As you gather more insight, you can take this to the next level by breaking down your customers based on demographics.
One way to go about that is by using Google Analytics to find out more through the "Audience" tab. You'll get all sorts of details — including age, gender, location, interests, device, etc.
Another way to identify your focus group is by asking for feedback from your customers. That's an excellent way to tap into their minds and understand their needs and challenges.
There are dozens of marketing channels you can focus on when developing a content strategy for your brand. Each one is different in the audience it offers and the preferred content format.
At first sight, it might seem like a good idea to do them all at once.
After all, that should maximize your chances of success and yield better results... Right?
A content marketing strategy is a long-term plan with real investments involved, including time and money. So, you should develop a sustainable, results-oriented approach that will guarantee the best outcomes.
SEO is a critical marketing channel for most businesses as search engines remain the biggest source of traffic on the internet today. Therefore, you must publish quality content regularly on your blog.
Social media marketing can be powerful as long as you choose the right platforms to be on.
However, it is hard to tell that from the start. And it's never the case that your target audience is present in equal portions across all platforms.
So, try different ones for some time, then stick to the ones that bring the best results.
Email marketing works wonders for lots of businesses as long as it's well implemented. And although it takes time, it can guarantee the highest conversions from your most loyal customers.
You'll face many doubts as you continue to move forward in your content marketing journey. There is a lot to keep track of and too many unanswered questions at the start.
You might be wondering:
The thing is:
You can't reinvent the wheel on your own from the beginning. There are too many variables in play, making it impossible to hit all the right nails in the head.
That's when having competitors becomes a blessing!
There are lots of tools and techniques to identify your competitors and analyze their processes. But as a start, we prefer sharing with you free strategies to keep your costs low.
Our favorite approach to this is simple:
Let's look at your competition in terms of "attention" instead of "profits."
Think about that for a moment...
What you'll realize is that anyone creating content similar to yours is your competitor. They don't have to sell your product or services. They just need to focus on your content marketing goals.
So, you'll use that to study your competition and identify what's working for them.
You can check who's ranking at the top of the SERPs using your target keywords. This step should give you a clear picture of who you're competing against in your content creation.
Be sure to look into your competition on social media to see which posts generated the most interactions. What type of content is getting the most shares? And what topics are getting the most comments?
This step is directly tied to your marketing channels, as that defines the type of content you'll create in the future.
The most popular content types today are:
Each of them will require specific skills to create and publish — whether it's research, graphic design, copywriting, etc.
If you want to create an infographic, you'll need thorough research on the subject.
You must then give the content to a graphic designer who'll turn it into an eye-catching visual you can share with your followers.
Or maybe you're starting an email newsletter.
It takes a lot of planning and writing before you can send an email. You must then have someone integrate that into an automation tool, schedule the campaign, etc.
So, be sure to detail in your content plan answers the following questions:
We suggest that you get started with blogging because it's a must for any business today.
Publishing fresh content helps increase your authority in the SERPs and improve your SEO rankings. And since it's hosted on your website, it's also an efficient way to boost your conversions and sales.
You’re almost there!
You’ve identified your target customers and the type of content you want to create for them. You know where to find them online and what topics they’re most interested in.
Now, it’s time to get everything in order.
The biggest challenge you’ll face when creating content for your brand isn’t outshining your competition or connecting with your audience.
It’s lack of structure…
Not knowing what to do next is the reason most content plans fail.
That’s why this step is more than necessary.
A content calendar is an organizational document that details everything about your content strategy.
It answers questions like:
Having such a schedule will provide precise answers to help you stay on track. And taking the time to do that will save you a lot of headaches in the long run.
To help you and your team stay organized, we suggest using free content management tools — such as Google Docs, Google Sheets, or Trello. They’ll grant you all the clarity you need to keep the team more motivated to work consistently.
It’s now time to sit back and watch.
You’ll use the marketing goals you set at the beginning to assess how your content is performing. And through that, you can make educated guesses on how your content plan could improve.
But how do you track your results effectively?
Here’s all you have to do:
You must set up a Google Analytics for your website at the beginning. Then you’ll use its reports to evaluate your progress and track your key metrics.
Read our comprehensive beginner’s guide on how to get started with Google Analytics.
You must pay attention to how your followers are reacting to your content on social media.
Are they interacting with your posts and leaving comments? Do they click on your links? Are they reaching out to you through direct messages?
Your SEO rankings will also tell you a lot about some critical aspects of your marketing plans. That includes your targeted topics, keyword research, link building strategy, etc.
Is your content ranking high on the SERPs? Did you notice an increase in organic traffic after implementing the new strategy?
If you're waiting for your content to be perfect before you can share it, you'll never publish anything. You'll fall for analysis paralysis and never take any action to move your business forward.
The biggest brands in the world understand this very well. That's why they've decided to incorporate feedback implementation as part of their content marketing plans.
You'll never know 100% what works and what doesn't, but your audience does.
So, why not learn from it?
Start creating content and watch continually how your audience is interacting with it.
After that, implement the feedback by improving what's not bringing the best results and doubling down on what's working.
So this is it… You’ve now created a rock-solid content marketing strategy for your business. It will help you keep on track and execute your marketing plans successfully.
But don’t forget:
Flexibility is essential when implementing your content plan. You never know what works for sure or what results to expect. So, be adaptable to change and listen to what your customers want to tell you.
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