Marketing
Online Marketing
5 Tips on Online Marketing

Every week Business Blog provides you with 5 Tips for increasing your business productivity. This week we’ve decided to touch up on the internet marketing tips and common assumptions that business owners make about the websites and online stores (e-commerce). Please, read below and make any comments you think are appropriate to this post.

1. Don’t assume that if you’ve done search engine optimization at one time it is still valid. SEO landscape changes very quickly and is very unstable with all new releases of Google algorithm updates. Search Engine Optimization is a constant practice that has to be done by professionals and through eligible sources.  You have to stay on top of all optimization that is done to the website. For example, make sure that you know at least several keywords and their exact positions. This will give you an ability to monitor your positions and overall optimization efforts.

2. Currently, there is a huge trend in users accessing websites and spending time online by using their mobile devices. Therefore, you have to make sure you have a mobile optimized website for your current and potential clients. Google has release a great mobile website builder, check it out here: http://www.howtogomo.com. It is a very inexpensive and great tool for creating a simple but very useful mobile website.

 3. Make sure that your website is user optimized. So, let’s say you’ve spent your time and money on online marketing, you finally got a visitor to your site, but the site is not user friendly – you’ve just wasted your time and money. In addition, most likely you’ve lost future customer because he had an unpleasant experience. Your website is a critical first impression tool! Think about it, people visit your website in order to meet you and review your services.

4. In order to keep up with all your online marketing initiatives, please create a schedule and make sure you follow it. It is vital in making sure you are progressing and increasing your marketing reach.

5. Be constant! You don’t have to spend all your time on marketing for your business, you can do a bit but in a constant flow. After several months you’ll see it adding up to a wider funnel of opportunities.

Marketing is a constant practice of reaching out to your target audience and capturing leads from all expected places. As mentioned you don’t have to spend much time, rather you have to be constant on message delivering and all your activities.


 
 
increase website traffic
Website Traffic
Increasing website’s traffic and customer flow

I’d like to start by explaining why you as a website owner should be looking into every opportunity to increase your website’s traffic. Being a business owner you should be relying onto several different sources for gathering leads and creating potential customers. One of a very good ways to pick up new customers is to create a lead funnel from your business/corporate website. Employing your website for customer gathering is a very cost effective and useful way. You have to realize that they’ve spent some time looking for a product or service online and were able to find you as a source. At that stage it is very important to keep your customer at your website and make sure he delivers the needed action of conversion.  It is important to understand that every visitor to your website is a potential customer. This is the main reason why you should be increasing the amount of visitors on your website. By increasing your website’s traffic you are increasing your chances to better and higher conversion rates, such as: check-out, newsletter subscription, service subscription and other types of website conversion. There are multiple ways to increase your website’s traffic; the most useful is to perform internet research on the needed topic before implementing any internet marketing. Internet marketing is very broad and holds many different strategies, techniques and practices. Everyone involved in the internet business or even having a website and wanting to be found must employee if not all, at least some techniques to “advertise” online, in order to attract the needed audience.

Here are the most used online internet tactics to increase traffic to your website:

·         Article, PR and online writing
·         PPC and SEO (Search engine optimization)
·         Link building and Blog posts
·         Video making (YouTube)
·         Campaigns and landing pages

Employing all of the above techniques should give you a great chance of increasing the customer’s flow to your website. Please keep in mind that in order to convert your customers into buyers you have to have a good website design and user friendly navigation. As mentioned above there are multiple practices to increasing traffic: you can buy YouTube views, optimize your website in search such as Google and Bing; however in order for those techniques to succeed you have to really optimize your website for user’s benefit. Optimizing your website for user friendly browsing is the key in making customers want to stay on your website. The more time they spend on your pages reading the information the higher chance they will convert to a customer. Different studies have shown that “sticky” content makes reader or visitor willing to come back and interact with you. Even if they don’t buy right now, but they’ve spent some time on your website and theoretically enjoyed it they might come back. Another theory is that when the need for your product/service arises they will be more willing to go back to your website.

Optimizing online marketing activities and optimizing your website are two key components of a successful online business.


 
 
Internet for business
Internet for Business
Internet use for Business Operations

Internet provides many different opportunities for business operations. Business can tremendously grow by employing internet means and discovering the full potential of social networking. Every day more and more businesses select internet as their main source for many different practices, such as: contacting customers, offering customer service, generation leads, finding and creating new customer and constantly advertising their services. It is now known that many companies select internet as one of their primer source is for advertising and media relationship building. Traditional forms of advertising such as television, radio and billboards are very expensive and usually can only be afforded by the large organizations. With that said internet offers a much lower price for “its service”. When compared with how much needs to be spent on producing just one TV or radio ad versus internet spending’s one can clearly outline the price difference and the outcomes.

Here are several ways of how the internet can be used to achieve your business goals, strategies and lead generations:

·         Internet marketing
·         Search engine optimization (SEO) and Google Pay-per-Click (PPC)
·         Article and PR writing and distribution
·         Social networking and social media
·         Use of forums, blogs and communities

One of a great ways that internet might help you is by giving you an ability to find out what the client want or need, and the best part is that the internet gives you an option to use it almost for free. You will not be paying money for your online marketing research and target development as internet is not as expensive as traditional forms of marketing research.

Internet offers great ability to find new customer and directly contact them by constantly delivering a unique message that can appeal to the needed market. An ability to develop a good communications message is a MUST, as you have to make sure that you target audience is interested in what you are planning to deliver to them. Internet offers a wide variety of sources to provide business with support they need and bring cost effective solutions.


 
 
leads
Identifying new leads and opportunities

Every business is determined to live upon finding new leads and opportunities and converting them into customers. Without customers and sales there is not business. Business can only be successful if all sales cycles are met and the customer is willing to buy service or product. Depending on the business you might have different challenges with one remaining constant throughout all organizations striving to get more sales through acquiring new lead and generating new customers. Generating new customers is somewhat challenging especially at the beginning stage of business. When you are in the early stages of business it is hard for you to get a constant customer flow and big numbers of sales, but don’t worry it’s almost the same for everybody. At the early stages when you don’t know many tricks and pitfalls you are destined to make business mistakes. It is better to do them now with lower amount and lower risks then when you have big sums and big deals.

Now, let’s come closer to identifying how to get new leads and where to find new opportunities.

First of all, let’s not forget about the oldest way of unintentional marketing that is transferred by your customers – word-of-mouth. It is the oldest and probably one of the most influential forms of “marketing” that the world knows. Each customer’s reference is a powerful tool and has a very high chance of converting into a sale. People trust each other and share information. Therefore, if your product is good and reliable be ready for some customer references. However, to be successful in word-of-mouth you have to be sure that you have a good solid product or service; otherwise people will be sharing their negative experience with their friends!

Second, there are many and many business/professional directories where you can find business names including contact information such as phone and emails, or at least you can get the name of the person or persons you want to reach. Having a name of the person your contact is critical. You can always find out extra information such as email or phone number from contacting the firm directly and talking to the reception and telling them that you’d like to send something to Mr. or Ms. so and so but don’t have their email. One of good business directories is Jigsaw. Certain information is free such as: name, position and title; however the information that you need the most such as email and telephone number is paid.

Third, traditional forms of marketing. For a very long time marketing played a very important role in any business, its primer role is to create awareness, attract customers and communicate with them through the means of marketing messages. If this is applicable to your business you should be trying traditional newspaper and magazine advertising, billboards, direct mail, radio ads (if the budget allows you) and other forms of traditional marketing.

Fourth, online forms of marketing. With the internet expansions there are many different forms of marketing that you can engage yourself into, they range from email marketing, banner advertising, paid targeted websites ads, Pay-per-click by Google and Bing, SEO (search engine optimization), affiliate programs with other websites and other types that would suite your business.

All those sources should work cohesively to create a good funnel and a fresh flow of leads and opportunities for your prospect to customer conversion.


 
 
Brand
Brand Building
Brand Building - Building more than just a brand

Brand is a very important aspect of your daily business life. Brand defines everything you want your business to be. Brand can be associated with the feel and vision customers get after being in contact with your company. You can make it almost anything you want. For example, think about Disney! What is the first thing that comes to your mind? Most likely it is fun, childhood, toys, ice cream and great time! Then think about Nike, it is sport, action, move, running and anything related to sport activities. Your brand has to have the same kind of message. Although your brand is not as known as those mentioned above, when you’ll be getting more customers and referrals you’ll notice that people do differentiate you by your brands, mission statement and vision.

Building brand is one of the most important marketing strategies. Many successful brands are successful because customers can differentiate them by just looking at the logo or colors. In order to make your brand stand out you have to create a unique logo and brand yourself with something memorable and easily recognizable. Usually a good graphic designer will be able to create a unique logo for you. Use catchy colors for the website and brochure design. Make them all look in the loop and close to each other, so that is makes sense for the customer who saw your flyer, brochure or business card and your website to recognize you as the same brand. Small tip: don’t go on too many colors, the more colors you include on the print material the more it’ll cost you to print. Usually anywhere from 2 to 3 is the most optimal color range. However, don’t be afraid to use little bit more colors on your website. For example, you can have a header in blue, menu bar in light blue, main body in white and footer in blue or something that would resonate with the color range.

Successful branding has to be spread across all marketing channels going from the most cost effective and reliable to the next affordable level. One thing to keep in mind is you have to experiment with your marketing push across all different marketing channel platforms. In sometime you’ll find out that some work better than others and others bring more profit. It is always a trial and fail with some marketing strategies. You have to do regular things that bring the constant steady results while experimenting with new techniques and strategies.

As mentioned previously marketing push has to be done through the means of different marketing strategies, here are several examples: internet marketing, press release, news and other types of press marketing, advertising, lead generation and peer groups, etc.

One of the most cost effective and result driven marketing strategies is the internet marketing. With its ability to be spread out in a short amount of time to a large amount of users, it brings a good return on investment while being relatively at the low cost if compared with traditional forms of marketing.  Google and Bing both offer a PPC (pay-per-click) advertising that can be placed in search. In addition, search engine optimization is a good source of defining a landscape for your website in a competitive web space.

Brand building is one of the most challenging and most rewarding marketing practice’s, it offers many benefits to those who are willing to invest time and resources into it.


 
 
Internet Marketing
Internet Marketing
All you need to know about Search Engine Optimization and Internet Marketing

Let’s begin by saying that those two are not the same; while Internet Marketing is a wide practice and is under the umbrella of the marketing itself, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is just a tool that is being used as a form of marketing implementation. Internet growth gives many options for any size of business that wishes to grow. Anyone selling or delivering its services online can take a great advantage over the internet marketing offerings. Many online marketing agencies offer great services as SEO, PPC, online PR, networking, web development and many others. With all those services offered you don’t have to worry about being visible to your customers.

You have several options with the Internet Marketing, you can do all by yourself, which will require you to learn the practice or you can hire someone to do it for you. In my practice most of the time people don’t like to do it by themselves as it requires them to invest a reasonable amount of time and sometimes money or they simply don’t have the time as they run their daily business operation.

Search Engine Optimization – is a way which can help you make your website visible to many customers by refining the website layout, making it more useful, adding helpful information for the user, and not engaging into any spam activities! SEO is a great way to show your customers your products and services, or simply deliver the important information. Please keep in mind that SEO is not only made for your current customers to help them find you, it is meant for all audience who is interested in the topic of your discussion. You can use search engine optimization to demonstrate your work or share the information with the world. Search Engine Optimization found their ways back in 1995 when the first major search engines were born. Now internet marketing is a big part of any marketing strategy, it offers lower costs, higher customer reachability, faster way of delivery and several other important aspects of the marketing.

In order to successfully use internet marketing one must understand that it is not a onetime practice; it has to be done over and over with new and different strategies to be used.  There are tons of different ideas and strategies that one can apply to be successful with the online campaigns. Every campaign is going to be different and full of exciting discoveries. For example, you can set a goal of attaining hundred visitors for the first hour of you campaign in addition to 20% conversion, therefore you’ll have a goal of 100 people visiting your page with 20 of them buying, signing up or doing other activity that they are required to do. Conversion doesn’t only mean that the customer has to buy, conversion means that the customer has to perform a task that you need him to do. There are several ways to reach your goals: 1. You have to spread your content though social networks, such as facebook, twitter, stumbleupon (I personally find it to be the most of use). 2. You have to have many friends and like in order to spread the content fast and to have an ability to ask to spread your content. 3. Make friends with websites in the industry, you can ask them to advertise your post or event.

As said there are tons of ways to implement internet marketing, it all depends on what you need and the amount of time you can allocate towards it. If you have any questions please contact us.


 
 
Business Idea
Business Idea
From Business Idea to Business Success

Business is always full of rewards that come with the risks. All those days that you work hard to establish your business and create it from your business idea will eventually pay off, however sometimes they can be very daunting and challenging. It is common misconception that to have a successful business you have to have a large amount of capital, large workforce, and many connections and it is true to some extent however everybody started from somewhere.

Economic climate is always a challenge, you can predict it for a while but in a long term you have no idea what the economy is going to look like tomorrow. Tougher economy makes it harder to start and to establish your practice; however there is a benefit to it as well. Bad economic situations make businesses smarter as they have to figure out how to survive. It is not to say that those that don’t survive are not smart! There are industries that are dying themselves just because of what they do, for example traveling industry is slowing down dramatically in the crisis as people tend to spend less on leisure, the same goes with the entertainment. In this post we’d like to give you several tips on increasing a chance of survival and a chance to convert your idea to the actual business.

1. Business Idea

Your idea is the main source of fuel for your company. Idea and your will to accomplish your goals drive you to success. You have to create a solid view of what you want to do. It doesn’t have to be something totally new, although it is more beneficial. What you have to be sure of is you have to have a market for your idea. You have to ensure that your business will be successful by checking if someone needs what you want to offer.

 2. Business Plan

Business plan is critical and is a must to do task. If you are failing to plan, you are planning to fail! You have to develop a solid, concise and very well thought trough business plan. It has to include several sections, going from mains idea, executive summary, financial needs, marketing strategy, workforce and many other sections.  The easiest way to do it is to create a check list and name all the necessary sections. You can search a sample of a business plan in Google, Bing or Yahoo searches, there are plenty of them and they are offered for free. Also, you can look at the government resources for business; they always have many sources available for business individuals.  

3. Cash Flow

You have to stay on top off your record. Many businesses fail because they fail to collect payments or check customer's credit if the transaction seems suspicious, they are sloppy with invoices, and they are not paying attention to how much they can spend and save to invest. A good accountant is a must! But if you don’t have a good accountant, then be one until you’ll find the right individual. It is critical to save and invest more into the business at its growing stage. Business needs cash and you have to be on top of what is being spent. If your creditors or customers don’t pay, it is your responsibility to get the money out of them. Start by talking and if it doesn’t lead anywhere cut off the service and move on to the collection agencies.

4. Marketing

Marketing is a must for any business! If you don’t market yourself no one will know you. You have to spend on marketing and advertising. People come to those they see messages from, think about yourself you only know about many products or services because the provider has marketed and advertised it to target the audience which also means they've done market research. You can use many different techniques, from traditional direct mailing, posters, banners, newspaper ads, to online marketing and  advertising, SEO (search engine optimization), PPC (pay-per-click), to blogging to social marketing on Twitter, Facebook and other social websites. Marketing is never enough therefore the more you do it the more potential customers might see you.

You have to sit down and rationalize all your marketing ideas, cut out everything you don’t like. Check your marketing efforts every week to set up a base for you activities.  See what’s working and what’s not to eliminate unnecessary spending.

And remember your marketing strategy will be a guide for you to establish yourself on the market as well as it will help you to understand who your target market is.


 
 
new customers
Attract new Customers
How to attract new customers and build customer relationships

A healthy client base is a key in a successful business growth. It is essential to keep positive relationship with your current client base, however it is even more important to find and grow new clients for your organization. Here is why it is important to win new customers while keeping your current clients: every new customer brings new revenue to the business, while current customer brings maintenance profit. It is essential to understand that both are important and together they will ensure the success of your business. In the current economy situation, captivating new business can be somewhat difficult, yet there are several techniques that can be an advantage of yours when battling with competition.

We’ll be naming several tips on how to build and win relationships with clients and convert them from prospects to customers.

Hospitality and customer appreciation

Customer appreciation events are a great way of showing your appreciation and your true intent to save the relationship you have with clients. Additionally, hosting hospitality event will initialize that you take care of your customers and will positively affect those who think of becoming your client. There are many different types of activities you can do for your clients, as an example: taking everybody to the sports game for the city’s main sport’s team, boat cruise, having an open house with venue, and etc. The main point about all those events is to make a long lasting positive impression on your current and potential customers. If you are willing to go and spend extra resources on organizing something of that nature it should bring you all the benefits in the long run assuring your commitment towards the customers. Creating such a pleasant experience you’ll guarantee yourself a place in their memory when the time will come to think about the service you provide.

 Develop press relations

Local press is highly important in developing relationships with public and your audience. Local business presence has always proved to be one of the most valuable audiences, especially at the growth stage. The relationship that can and should be developed with key editors of your local and ideally nationwide press is essential in developing strong public exposure of your organization. For many years public relations were one of the most trustworthy and gainful ways to capture the attention of the needed target market and it has been used as a resource by many marketers for years. A great idea to use press is when you require promoting a specific aspect of your business such as: new service, new promo, new product or event to raise an overall awareness. The key idea of course for any press releases it to generate interest and grab the attention of your target market.

Put internet marketing strategy together

There are numerous ways you can employ the internet to get new leads, win new customers and new business. The selection ranges from: blogging, online press release, pay per click advertising (PPC), SEO, social media to several others. All above should work together in order to deliver the highest return. Remember that the internet is extremely fast paced place and in order to achieve best results you have to play using all fields. One suggestion, if you are not that good with the internet and don’t have any idea on how to advertise using it, you might think about employing internet marketing specialist. With the increased development, continuous efforts and traffic growth there is huge probability to secure new clients through online methods.


 
 
Search Engine Optimization (seo)
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
The power of Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – has dramatically increased its popularity due to the internet growth. SEO is a great source of increasing the popularity of your website on the internet. It is very useful for any kind of business that has an online presence because primer role of SEO to attract and/or increase the number of visitors to your website. Search engine optimization goes back to as early as 1995 with several search engines available on the internet. The basic idea is to help search engines to analyze and determine websites with a specific content and optimize them so that they appear visible to the public who is looking for the same terms or subjects. Although SEO is very helpful many individuals made it a tool of spam as they would over use it and use techniques that would potentially harm safe search for users.

For example, SEO can be used to trick search engines into thinking that the website is about shoes, however when you would visit the website you’ll see that there are no shoes but the owners are trying to sell you cheap watches. Because of those issues major search engines made it possible to battle spammers and overcome those issues by developing complex algorithms to calculate and websites parameters.

Search engine algorithm is a unique piece of code that is designed to calculate many criteria of the website, such as: websites name, page urls, page headings, page content and many more. Search engines use such as Google, Yahoo and Bing use crawlers to crawl websites for the information that helps to analyze all of its content to make judgements if the website is sufficient and relative enough to the content it is providing and to the keywords that it is being optimized for.

SEO is a tremendous source for any business owner to use as it provides efficient, cost effective and high on return results. The down side of course is you cannot measure it. You can’t calculate the exact number of leads, calls or conversions generated from it; however you can approximately see the scope and definite increase in the business cycle. One important thing to mention is, if your website has never been optimized and it is a first time or it has been optimized for some time and then it stopped, it might take anywhere from 3 to 6 month to notice first progress.

Website optimization is a good technique to increase your website’s visibility and increase the amount of new users visiting your website. In addition, there are many techniques that can be used for SEO; we will discuss some of them in our future posts. Please stay tuned.


 
 
Business Blog
Blog for Business Website
Blog for Business Website

Lots of times business owners create websites and think that the rest will be done automatically; that the customers will find them easily, that there is enough information on the website, that the information is useful and so on. However, none of the above usually happens for two reasons: 1. website is not being optimized; 2. badly lacks new and fresh content. Those two reasons are major in developing a good, attractive and useful website to increase amount of traffic and new visitors.

Just developing and putting website online doesn't mean that there is going to be thousands of visitors coming every day to see the pages. The main item that brings visitors to your website is the content! Content is the only reason why everyone and anyone would visit the website. Why? The more content there is and the more constantly it is being updated the more visitors and users understand that the website is fresh and someone is constantly working on it to update and keep everyone informed.

Employing blog on your business website is one of the best sources to attract new visitors and views. There are many benefits of having it on your actual business website. It will bring more attention to your core website and core services or products; also it will increase your ranking in search engines and internet. By increasing the visibility website becomes more popular and available for the users. The more content you have and the more you post it, the more it becomes associated with the website and becomes more apparent to the searcher.

You can think about it in this way, what visibility chance will you have if you are constantly sitting at home and never go out? I'm pretty sure it's very close to minimum. The same theory goes with the online presence; to be visible on the net one must show lots of fresh content.

Business blogging is a great way to attract new customers as they can read what can be offered and understand that you are following the news and keeping yourself updated. Majority of business owners don't see the benefit of blogging as they like to see the fast return, however it doesn't work this way so they give up after starting. To be successful, one should be blogging for at least 2-3 months to become visible to the public, however once the blog becomes visible it leave a major foot print and becomes exploited by many visitors coming from all over the places to explore the unique content.

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