Online Business and Marketing

Three Things to Look For Before Signing Up with a Marketing Agency

Online Business and Marketing

Hiring a marketing agency is akin to entrusting your business and your brand in their hands. Therefore, you should practice utmost discernment so that you end up with an agency that can truly get your message out in the market on your behalf and get results. Here are three things you need to investigate when narrowing down your oil and gas marketing agency candidates.

Client List and History

A marketing agency’s client list speaks volumes about its competence and reliability. A hefty list of familiar names means an agency is doing their job right. Otherwise, the agency is probably doing a poor job, something which you want to avoid. If you research a little about an agency you’re considering, you can also learn their client history. This knowledge can aid your eventual decision to either hire them or look elsewhere.

Creative Portfolio

A portfolio is what a marketing agency must show for their accomplishments in the industry. Studying an agency’s portfolio can give your insight into their strengths and perhaps even their weaknesses. If you see something you like, then that’s a promising start. However, if you are in a rush, you can even decide to sign up with a marketing agency on the merits of their portfolio alone.

Range of Services

Your best game is to partner with a full-service marketing agency. This will allow you to simplify processes. This allows you to avoid the stressful scenario of communicating with a variety of vendors. Why go through all those, when you could have just as easily partnered with one vendor that has consolidated all the works you need?

Once you pick a marketing agency that best suits your needs, the next step in the process is letting them know what you expect and the results you want to see.

Website Checklist: 7 Elements Your Homepage Should Have

Online Business and Marketing

A website homepage serves as the face of a company in the online world. That is why it is important to make the right first impression—of course, you want your visitors to become more interested in your business, and you want them to convert into customers.

This is also why it is a good idea to consult with web design experts in Bromley when building your site. They know exactly what would make website visitors come and stay.

The most basic information your homepage should have is your contact information, including links to social media profiles. To give you an idea of the other things your homepage needs so you can get started on assessing and improving your company’s website, here is a handy checklist.

Clear and easy-to-read headline

Your homepage has exactly three seconds to tell visitors what your business has to offer, so keep it clear and simple, yet compelling.

Sub-headline that supplements the headline

The sub-head should offer a brief description of what your business offers. Focus on letting visitors know what your product or service addresses.

Overview of products, services, or features

A short overview of what you are offering provides potential customers with enough information to make them want to know more. Include supporting images or short videos, as visual elements attract attention and break up chunks of text.

Calls to action

Provide clear and concise text that would compel visitors to take action, such as “Sign up for a free trial,” “Pre-order your mermaid blanket today,” or “Get your free e-book.” Make sure your CTAs are easy to see and tap on mobile.

Social proof or client testimonials

One of the challenges of marketing online is that website visitors are usually sceptical of your products or services unless someone credible says otherwise. Include proof that you are legitimate and trustworthy, and your products are indeed top-notch.

Benefits of buying from you

Why should consumers choose you over other companies? Write these down on your homepage but make sure to keep the copy brief and easy to read.

Intuitive navigation

Site structure is an important factor in providing visitors with a good user experience. The easier it is to navigate around your homepage, the greater the chances that your visitors will stick around and explore some more. The navigation menu should be visible and easy to access even on mobile, and it’s ideal to have a search box to allow visitors to find information faster.

These are some of the elements that will make the homepage of your website leave a good impression on potential customers.

3 Things Your Interior Design Project Management Software Should Have

Online Business and Marketing

a designer looking at his devicesUsing interior design project management software is increasingly becoming a necessity for every designer. However, to get the best there is in the market, Mydoma Studio suggests you check that it has the following qualities:

1. Remote Access

You do not want to have software that you can only use at one location. You do not have to be carrying your laptop to access details of your project.

That will require you to ensure that you get cloud-based software that is running on six sigma principles or other high-level project management methodologies.

2. Compatibility with Your Devices

You should also confirm that the project management software you are planning to buy can operate effectively and efficiently with other programs that you use on your computer to run and manage your design projects.

If your computers are on the same LAN, it is necessary that the applications in each of these PCs can communicate and complement their functionality. It is, therefore, advisable that you always run compatibility tests of every design project program you plan to have before purchasing it.

3. Interoperability

It is necessary that you also confirm that your design software can run together with its future versions with near-zero hitches in functionality. It would be handy if you can also use it in different computer hardware and programs that you use to either present or render your design projects.

The software with these standards should be able to communicate and exchange data seamlessly with other programs that meet the same project management objectives you have set. It should also be able to interact well with other computerized systems that you use at your workplace without extra effort on your part.

Confirming that management software that you buy has all the above features will increase the significance of IT products in your running of interior design projects.

Top Techniques to Connect Emotionally with Customers

Online Business and Marketing

Man smiling to a woman while showing her a paper‘Branding demands commitment…Striking chords with people to stir their emotions.’ This is a quote from Sir Richard Branson, the CEO of Virgin. This is a mantra that the most successful brands follow; they resonate on a personal level with their target markets. This results in loyal, sometimes rabid, fan bases that willingly promote their products and services.

Experts from Red Rider Creative, an ad agency from Utah cite the following techniques on how you can emotionally connect with customers.

Creating a Unique Experience

You create a loyal, and even sometimes rabid, customer base by making them feel they are special to you. One of the ways to achieve this is to provide them with distinct experiences; this includes using appropriate language that your audience uses regularly, quick responses to queries via email or social media, posting product or service testimonials, and even using your customers in some promotional materials.

Valuable Insights

Apple distinguished itself from other devices because of the feeling of exclusivity they created, even if other gadgets had similar or even superior features. Provide your potential customers with a special ‘something’ they can’t find anywhere else. This can come in the form of an old topic with a distinct take or perspective, or a service or product they can’t find anywhere else.

Be an Authority

When a person perceives you as an expert, they will hold your opinion in high regard. This perception puts you in a position of authority with a lot of influence and sway. This position enables you to elicit the emotions and actions you want from your intended audience.

A Compelling Story

A strong narrative is far more memorable compared to advertising pitches and commercials. A story resonates and stays with those that watch or read it, because someone may have gone through the same experiences.

These are some of the ways you can connect with your audience emotionally. Implement these to relate to your customer base and keep them loyal.

Don’t DIY It: Why It’s Best to Leave Web Design to the Professionals

Online Business and Marketing

Professional website developer at workA website can be instrumental to the success of a business. It is a portal that can communicate a brand’s message to the world, after all. Moreover, it can serve as your first (and if you’re not careful, only) impression. Thus, a website needs to compellingly describe your firm and entice visitors to purchase your products or services.

A properly designed website can act as a driving force of your business. Given the possible boost it can provide, it would be best to leave custom and creative web design to professional companies like Webs Unweaved. Here are a few reasons you should consider getting the help of web design specialists instead of taking web design into your own hands.

These Professionals Can Optimize Your Site

It’s not just enough to have an eye-catching website. It’s also important to be visible online by ranking well in major search engines, such as Google and Bing. Accomplishing this goal usually requires that you design and build your business website with the right code and structure.

Designing a website without the necessary SEO know-how — from optimizing header and title tags to including geo meta tags — could lead to missed opportunities to significantly increase your number of visitors. So, if you’re not familiar with both web design and SEO, it’s highly recommended that you let professionals handle your site.

These Experts Can Enhance Your Site’s Performance

It is possible that you can adversely impact your site’s loading speed and performance if you are not well-versed in web design in development. Thus, it’s best to leave your site in the hands of experts if you want to improve your site’s performance. Some of the things they’ll do to enhance performance are to optimize images and reduce server response time. These can help ensure that your potential clients will stick around, especially if they are interested in your product or service.

These Specialists Can Communicate Your Brand Properly

One of the first things to do when designing a new company website is to figure out the business’ brand messaging and content. Business owners can often write down a detailed list of what should appear on the website. While your website should inform and answer customer questions, it should not overwhelm visitors with information.

This is where a professional web design team comes in. Web design specialists can trim that exhaustive list down to the essentials. Moreover, they can also optimize pages to answer certain questions and persuade visitors to perform desired actions. This will make sure that you’re communicating the company’s brand information to your visitors effectively.

A site built with the help of a web design team can optimize the business’ site, improve its performance, and convey the brand’s message properly. Working with a professional team ensures that your business gets an optimized and functional website consistent with your value and brand propositions.

Autocorrect: Combatting the No. 1 SMS Marketing Campaign Killer

Online Business and Marketing

A phone on a laptop So you bought ad spaces on print ads, billboards and even on national television, all telling consumers to text your keyword to your SMS short code.

Instead of having users flock to get a coupon, download a whitepaper, or subscribe to email, however, you get nothing.

Have you checked autocorrect?

No. 1 SMS Campaign Killer

Autocorrect is one of the biggest SMS marketing campaign killers. Denny’s, for instance, once asked customers to text the keyword “DENNYS” and other personal info to 73757 to enrol in the new Denny’s Diner Perks Loyalty Program. But mobile phones autocorrected “DENNYS” to “DENNY’S”, returning an error message.

What can you do to avoid suffering the same fate as Denny’s, other than hiring an SMS marketing expert?

1. Trim the Keyword Fat

Avoid using two words for the keyword. Yes, you want your keyword to be descriptive, but this will only lead to excessive or clunky keywords.

Make your keywords as quick and easy to type as possible. One-letter responses (e.g. “Y”) are fine, but if you really want to be clever with your keywords, check the Apple and Android autocorrect to see what each system does to the keyword.

2. Avoid Misspellings, Invented Words and Special Characters

Avoid misspellings as keywords. Even if done on purpose, phones will autocorrect it to the proper spelling or to the closest word. Adding a special character is a no-no as well, due to the configuration of mobile phone keyboards.

For anything else, check your error messages. What customer responses preceded an error? You may find patterns that you can address, either by accepting common autocorrected keywords or drafting a more helpful error message.

Sure, an autocorrect fail happens easily in normal, everyday conversations. You can easily fix that with a simple explanation. Unfortunately, however, when an autocorrect fail happens while a potential client is trying to join an SMS marketing campaign, you can easily lose a subscriber.

Being Proactive About Reviews Helps Your Local SEO Strategy

Online Business and Marketing

A businessman staring at a blackboard, focused on the five star option In a typical Google search, reviews now play a big role in how people (more importantly, potential customers) perceive your business. Searchers can immediately see your rating, on the first page, and it sets the tone for the way your customers perceive you.

It’s a tricky thing, getting a customer to review you. You don’t want to seem pushy because that turns customers off, but neither is it wise to your services or products go unnoticed. This is why you must proactively urge customers to leave reviews whenever they can. It can be as simple as leaving a short comment on Google reviews, or as thought-out as submitting a long testimonial or in Yelp. It’s just a matter of asking your consumers after all – something, by the way, which is always more effective when you offer an incentive.

Getting those precious five stars isn’t the endgame, though, as you can push these reviews and enhance your local reputation. The more positive your reputation, online, the bigger your profile and reach become. That can only be good for boosting your local SEO efforts.

Building Trust

This is, in part, what SEO services are about, whether you’re in Denver or Los Angeles. It’s about convincing people that you’re worthy of their precious time, and a positive review goes a long way in proving that. It trickles down, too: you can make positive claims within your web copy, establish your authority and improve your PPC chances – but bear in mind that your claims have to be grounded in truth.

A Bigger Priority

These days, SEO services are no longer privy to just a few select businesses; big or small. This year, investment in SEO is projected to increase to 20%, which means that you won’t be the only one who will leverage the popularity of Google search within your vicinity. This also means that time is of the essence, for you to get a leg up on the competition, and there’s no better time to get into local SEO than today.

Leveraging Optimism

Marketing is a lot more effective when you utilize several methods. Don’t limit the reach of those positive reviews. Use them in press releases, make these the focus of your off-page blogs, and leverage these to get more sales.

The best thing about being proactive is that you’re getting exactly what you want without broaching ethical standards. You get reviews, you leverage their value, and you’re able to improve the quality of your service. This comes full circle when you draw in new customers and are able to provide them the same level of service. It can only be good for your business, in the long run.

Mistakes to Avoid in the Earthmoving Business

Online Business and Marketing

Excavator digging a holeRunning an earthmoving business presents several unique challenges that you need to overcome if you want to succeed in the industry. Such unplanned problems as harsh weather conditions can seriously affect your business. However, many of the problems you may be facing in your business could be the result of mistakes you’ve unknowingly made.

Here are four common mistakes you want to steer clear from as you run your business:

Poor choice and maintenance of machines

While buying earthmoving machinery parts, be sure to select genuine ones from a reputable supplier. Machine downtime can cost thousands of dollars and pull your business down, according to Tuff Stuff. On the other hand, delivering quality work on time will earn you a good reputation and give you the opportunity to start the next job more quickly.

Unsatisfactory customer service

Customers are the bloodline of your business. Getting good clients is a challenging task. Maintaining them is even harder. The vast majority of your customers will stay away from your business if they are not happy with your services. Keeping your customers happy will motivate them to give you more business and refer other clients to you.

Failure to delegate

You may be the most skilled and experienced person in your business, but trying to do everything is a sure way to fail. Trying to do all menial tasks will suck your time and energy, leaving little time for you to grow your business. Hire talented employees and allow them to handle some of the duties in your company.

Poor marketing strategy

Effective marketing is much more than placing an advertisement in local dailies or magazines. Unfortunately, many business owners do not realise this. You need to be clear on who your target customers are, how they will know about your business, what their needs are, and how you intend to convert prospects into sales.

Many people who come into the earthmoving business are attracted by the lucrative opportunities that abound in the industry. Unfortunately, they make obvious mistakes that cost them dearly in the long run. Finding out these potential loopholes and taking care of them is a sure way to boost your chances of success.

These AdWords Mistakes Might be Dragging Down Your Strategy

Online Business and Marketing

shift button replaced with adwords

Like the rest of SEO, AdWords management is always evolving. With Google frequently rolling out updates and techniques, it can get difficult to master entirely, even for digital marketing veterans. The dynamic nature of AdWords management also makes it easy to commit mistakes during campaign execution.

When setting up an AdWords campaign, it pays to onboard a reputable company that offers relevant pay per click services.  Setting up your AdWords strategy, especially if it’s your first time, can lead to mistakes such as the following:

  1. Crowding your ad groups with keywords

It’s common misconception that dumping more keywords into an ad group can lead to more revenue. The truth is, crowding too many keywords in an ad group can make it impossible to make your ad as well as your landing pages relevant.

Using up to 15 keywords per ad group is ideal. You also need to remember that Single-Keyword-Ad-Groups or SKAGS also does wonders for businesses.

  1. Steering clear of negative keywords

Don’t get us wrong, choosing the right keywords is essential. Adding negative keywords, however, lets you rule out specific terms unrelated to your services or your business in general.

The important thing is to look for search terms that are triggering your ads to pave new ways for fresh negative keywords. If for instance, you notice that when your keywords trigger your ad for searches such as “24-hour plumbing services” but your office closes at 5 PM, you can include “24-hour” to your list of negative keywords. Doing so eliminates ad spend wastage from irrelevant clicks.

  1. You don’t have relevant landing pages

It’s not enough to simply link an ad to your homepage. Doing so will drive your leads to a destination that doesn’t match the offer from the ad, which may lead you to lose potential customers.

These are just some of the most common AdWords mistakes, and the best way to find out if you are making the same errors is to have an expert audit your website. If you find you have made any of these mistakes, don’t feel discouraged – a professional will know how to correct such mishaps.

How an Ad Agency Works for You

Online Business and Marketing

Advertising Agency at WorkAdvertising agencies work their way through almost every media channel – television, radio, print media, online magazines and websites. They send important and compelling messages through ads, but mostly, these messages revolve around selling products, services and ideas.

Industry leading company, Sphere, agrees that a typical advertising agency has three functions: to serve their client, to plan strategies and make a business succeed.

The Core Groups

The group that breathes life into an ad agency is its creative team, which is composed of an account manager, copywriter, and graphic artist. They fight for an account, and once they win it, they do everything to make the client like their output. The creative team is in charge of sending the brand’s message to its target audience.

On the other hand, the client servicing team is in charge of communicating with the client, negotiating with them and arranging meetings. The number of accounts an advertising agency has depends on how reliable and efficient the client servicing team is.

How Ad Agencies Work

During the meeting, the client servicing team makes a pitch to the client. A pitch is an idea or strategy the agency is planning to implement. Once the pitch has been approved, contracts are signed and the real work begins. Working in and with an advertising agency isn’t a walk in the park; there are rejections as much as there are project proposals.

Sometimes, the ad agency presents a solution to the client – a solution that usually puts everyone in a win-win situation. But more than just earning money through accounts and successful pitches, advertising agencies work hard to promote brands. Each project is important to the agency, as team members devote their time, effort and creative juices to it.

Once the material or ad is ready, the creative team will present it to the client for approval. The next step is to make the material known to the public. The client then pays the advertising agency.

Working with or for a client is not easy for an advertising agency. Once the material becomes successful or effective, everyone involved in the project – the client, the advertising team, and the public – will enjoy the benefits.