internet marketing


Five Tips for Earning Top-Quality Backlinks From Major Sites in Your Niche

By | Inbound Marketing, internet marketing | No Comments

In the good old days (or bad old days, depending on how you see things), Google allowed users to sell and trade links in order to boost search engine optimization (SEO). Nowadays, marketers have to do better than just dropping coin to generate precious links on prominent, well-trafficked websites linking back to their own. This in some ways levels the playing field for smaller players without the big promotional budgets, and forces the material, not the money, to earn the nods from big fish.

So why are backlinks so important? Well, for one thing, you’re SEO soars with backlinks from highly trafficked sites. You want your backlink to appear within the actual site content, not in a sidebar or a sponsored link. You also want less competition within the third-party site. Basically, the more useful your information is, the more likely you are to get backlinks. While the old method of simply buying or trading links has been terminated, here are five ways you can get your content linked from sites with high page rankings, few links, and relevance to what you are all about.

Don’t Be a Web Wallflower

Get active on online forums and blogs, by commenting on content, sharing, recommending, and liking posts from sites that you want to earn backlinks from. Find out who your target sites are and get involved in the discussions. You can link back to your own site by popping in your URL, but the more you contextualize why your site is worth visiting in relation to the topic at hand, the more authentic you’ll appear.

Find, and Carve Out, Your Niche

A backlink from a site that shares your niche is better than one that is irrelevant. Do your research to find the target sites you want to honestly acquire backlinks from. Industry leaders, those with great on and offline reputations, and any competitor or peer that appears higher in the search engine rankings than you should be on your hit list of sites to target. Then aim your backlink strategy directly at those whom you determine to be the most valuable to you in order to make the most of your time online.

Taggin’ It Plug-In Style

Paying attention to meta data means you are controlling just how your content appears when shared through social networks. You can install plugins on WordPress sites that allow you to tag your posts and images with your site URL, titles, and descriptions when shared on Facebook and Twitter. When users click through your image or share it, they will be directed back to your website. Getting lots of links back from those big social media sites is SEO gold.

Give Your Content Away. That’s Right—Guest Blog for Success

Providing content for other websites may seem counter-intuitive when what you really want is to drive traffic your way, but think about it. Are you going to capture more eyeballs with an article in a small town newspaper, or with a letter to the editor in the New York Times? Guest blogging for a larger outfit whose SEO makes you green with envy is a great way to ensure backlinks come your way, and builds not only your rapport with that site but your own reputation as a go-to expert in your field. Digg, StumbleUpon, and Squidoo are all great places to post articles, even if you’ve already used them elsewhere, because the search engines track links to these big sites with large communities, in a big way.

Be Everywhere: Social the Hell Out of Your Media

Even if you are only creating a profile, you can generate backlinks from major sites just with business listings and brief profiles. Your listings on Google Places, Foursquare, LinkedIn, and Google Profiles allow you to pepper target keywords into highly visible searchable databases.

All of this takes time and labor, but you can cut and paste keywords and phrases that you have researched as to their effectiveness. Take these steps and Google will have a far wider spectrum of sites to draw backlinks from. There’s a whack of decent backlinking tools out there, but those of us who have been around long enough to see changes in the way Google handles linking will recognize that a backlink, honestly earned, is worth dozens that may be tossed out as spam or slapped with no-follows as the sands shift beneath the SEO landscape. A free consultation with SEO Beaver can put on the path to earning top-quality backlinks. If this is you’re your business needs, fill out the form on this page, today.

Lead Capture Cartoon

Lead Generation 101: How to Properly Use Forms to Get Prospect Data for Follow-Up

By | conversion optimization, copywriting, Inbound Marketing, internet marketing, landing page conversion optimization checklist, Landing Pages | No Comments

Too many online marketers assume that their dynamic content will keep users engaged enough that they’ll make the move to contact, comment, or buy. But it’s up to you, dear seller, to initiate contact for lead generation. Using forms with sensitivity to user needs and objections will land you rich prospect data. Here’s how you can properly use forms to get prospect data for follow-up.

Whatever Doesn’t Work: Get It Right Before You Launch

First and foremost, your form has to function on every platform, every time. It also has to be secure, and your customers need to be aware of how secure it is. A security seal from a reputable company like McAfee or Verisign helps build user confidence, as does the application of Captcha codes. You can use Autocomplete to speed user progress, but beware of auto-suggest on mobile devices, as an intelligent device can quickly become quite the opposite when it offers auto-correct on email addresses.

Don’t Make Them Go Hunting

Your lead form has to be prominent. Hiding it in the margins of the page will result in frustration for both users and sellers. Visibly display the form once a user has spent a set amount of time on the site, as a popup, or have forms appear at the end of articles inviting users who “want more content like this” to subscribe. Basing visibility on users’ behavior works: be conspicuous, make it simple yet rich enough in data that you’ll be able to target your response, and always provide an alternative to simply saying “no” with a toll-free number, “like” option on Facebook, or other social media share prompt gabapentin generic. Forms in and of themselves can be foregrounded as a kind of call to action. If your end goal is to funnel leads into your customer relationship management (CRM) system, inviting people to fill out a form in order to receive a discount, get a free quote, or enter a contest becomes the central ask of the page. Bundling forms with enticing offers does two things: it incentivizes the form completion, and, by dint of having engaged users in an offline conversation, boosts conversion rates. You want to be in their inbox, knocking, in an active sales role rather than waiting for them to come to you.

Navigate Objections With Clear Communication

You are walking a tightrope between gathering useful information and seeming too acquisitive. Users are beginning to understand that if they are getting something for nothing (i.e. information or apps), then the data they give is a form of payment. They may be cheap with data until trust has been built, and you have shown your site and services to be indispensible. Grade your forms accordingly—the less information you demand up-front, the more likely people will be willing to offer it. Being perfectly clear about what happens when a user submits a form is also critical. A button that says “Click Here to Contact Us” is more trustworthy than one that says “Submit User Data.” Use friendly language and make your buttons look like buttons, placed where users expect to find them. If you are asking for data that may not seem strictly necessary to users, add a line explaining why you want it. For instance, if you are asking for birthdate, add a line telling users that your company sends out special offers for customers on their birthdays.

Reap What You Sow: Get Ready to Respond

Of course, once you have that precious form data, ensure that you have a solid offline team to respond personally and at lightning speed to the contact request. Your analytic data will tell you about user behavior (how often they have visited your site, duration of stay, etc.). Your responses should be tailored according to the quality of the prospect. Keep to these guidelines to build and make use of online forms that drive your business. Ensure that you have functionality and security, communicate clearly to users how to use forms and why you are gathering information, and make sure that forms are easily accessible, if not outright in-your-face. Finally, make sure that you are ready for the flow of information once you launch your forms, with a team of responders and a system to grade users into categories for customized responses. If you’d like to learn more about lead generation with a free consultation, fill out the form on this page to contact us today.

Email Marketing Errors to Avoid

Avoid These Email Marketing Campaign Errors at All Costs! (Or Die a Very Low Conversion Rate Death)

By | email marketing, internet marketing | No Comments

Though targeted online advertising is leaping and bounding ahead of mass marketing to become a conversion-rate ace in the hole, email marketing remains a strong contender to elicit responses to your calls-to-action. For many businesses, email marketing is a preferred way to generate brand awareness, nurture new prospects, increase website visits, and generate sales, according to chief marketing officers surveyed by iContact. However, the low rate of click-through, at 5%, can be driven further downward if advertisers don’t pay heed to these three email marketing campaign errors.

 No-No #1: Sending Without Permission

The golden rule of email marketing is “get permission, not from most, but from every single user.” Email marketing might be effective, but it’s also the only form of online marketing whose abuse has generated its own word (spam). When asking customers to opt-in to receive emails from you, post clearly just what you are planning to send forward, be it exclusive offers, coupons, or information updates. When done well, email marketing can deliver a $44 return for every $1 spent. However, email is very expensive indeed when its irrelevance drives customers away.


Whoops! No Images: Never Send Without Testing

There are so many different platforms, from mobile devices to a mish-mash of different web-based email servers. There is NO WAY, and the shouting is intentional, that you will achieve a flawless result on every platform with your first draft. Sending out an incomprehensible, image-poor, or partial email is worse than sending out nothing. After all, if you can’t get an email right, how are you going to deliver a flawless product? You need to check for renderability, deliverability, click-through functionality, conversions between platforms, and programming languages. A recent study published by email service provider Silverpop revealed that customers receive email in HTML format up to 50% of the time. HTML is notoriously fickle under varying circumstances, which is why the database-driven site builders like WordPress are so popular. Unless you have a lab with a complete array of email clients, it’s best to have your service provider perform this function, or check out some of the newer software apps that test your message on up to 100 different possible configurations medication gabapentin.


And You Want Me to Do…What? No Call to Action Means No Response

The best thing about email marketing is not that it’s cheap (though it is). It’s that you can get results quickly and optimize your pitch accordingly. Obviously, measuring click-throughs and open rates are one way to measure success, but a really hard-nosed seller isn’t going to paste on any gold stars until adding up sales. If you’ve crafted a great campaign with lovely images and compelling copy, you would be a fool not to have a prominent, and often repeated, call to action. Whether you want people to donate a set amount, shop online, or redeem their coupon, clicking through via a call to action will up your conversion rate significantly and lead people who may have happily grazed your offering and moved on right up to the gate. Make it easy to click through to the deal with a clear, well-marked button, and do yourself a favour by repeating it in both the subject line and in the body of the text.

Email marketing is here to stay, partly because people rarely unsubscribe once they’ve signed on, giving you regular access to their inboxes. The more you learn about a customer, the more you can then customize your messages, testing every time to ensure you’ve got the look and functionality you’re going for on multiple platforms. Critically, your email is there to spur a response: be clear on what you want your users to do, then spell it out, repeatedly, in your message. If you’d like to increase your business’s revenue and learn more about lead generation, take the first step and fill out the form on this page.

How I create laser targeted online ads

By | conversion optimization, internet marketing | No Comments

By now, we have all heard that print is a dying format.  While that may or may not be true – and we will probably know how accurate this sentiment is soon enough – it is pretty much a given that if you want to have an effective marketing campaign, you better have a stellar online ad campaign lined up and ready to go.  If you don’t, you stand to hide yourself from scores of potential young or tech savvy eyeballs whose concept of reading something that isn’t pulled up on a computer, tablet, or mobile device is a distant memory.

The only problem with this is, since online advertising is still somewhat in its infancy, a lot of us haven’t quite figured out how to maximize the medium’s potential.  We may know how to put ads online, but we may not know how to get those ads in front of the people we want.  In order to solve this critical piece of the puzzle, you need to understand the mindset and the personality of the potential customers you desire most.  Fortunately, this task isn’t as daunting as you might think.

Quality over Quantity

 In order to build a successful ultra targeted ad campaign online, you need to realize that getting your ad in front of people just for the sake of generating attractive CTR numbers is an empty pursuit.  It’s far more important that your online ad campaign attracts people that would want to buy your product as opposed to a bunch of people that click your ad out of curiosity.  This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t try and get your CTR as high as possible; it just means that you need to make sure the lion’s share of those clicks have actual purpose behind them.

Why are they on the Web?

 Since your quest to create ultra targeted ads online should focus on reeling in potential customers that will buy your product, you should first realize why they may be looking your way in the first place.  Essentially, your potential customer is going to be in one of three mindsets:

  • Surfing Mode – This person is going to be looking for information regarding your product in generalized terms.  In this stage, the person who ends up buying an eight-cup food processor with an extra large feed tube and a stainless steel slicing disc will merely do a search for “Food Processor” to start figuring out what they want.
  • Comparison/Review Mode – This person has a general idea of what they want, and is now in the process of performing due diligence.  This would include things like checking out product reviews, customer opinions, and taking a closer look at a product’s whistles and bells.
  • Buying Mode – This person knows what they’re going to purchase, and is looking for the best deal possible.  Because an online component is involved, this not only includes the price tag, but other benefits than can be offered, like shipping.

 You can figure out what kind of mode your target audience is in by tracking the kind of words that brings them to your site in the first place.  If people come your way via basic terms, they’re just window shopping.   If they drop in through hyper-focused searches, they are ready to reach for their credit card.

 A Matter of Personality

The rules of ultra targeted online ads don’t stop at where a person is at in the buying process.  Their personality plays a big factor into their buying habits, which is something that any online ad campaign worth its salt should be mindful of.

There are four types of buyer personalities that you have to deal with.  The first personality is the methodical buyer, and they are marked by a lack of speed.  They will dig through all of a product’s specs and get familiar with every last detail before they actually pull the trigger on a deal.  On the other end of the spectrum is the spontaneous buyer.  This buyer is driven by immediacy in more ways than one.  Things that drive expediency like free overnight shipping or discounts will lure this type of shopper in, but so will visuals that will suggest a positive experience with the product, such as a large number of on-site reviews.   In between these two personalities lay the humanistic and the competitive shopper; the former tends to carry a slower pace based on researching other customer experiences, while the latter appreciates reviewing product data, just as long as they don’t have to dig too deeply for the info.

Putting it All Together

Of course, it is entirely up to you in order to figure out what type of mindset and personality will be most attracted to your ad – and subsequently, your product.  Some of this detective work can be pretty obvious, solely based on the demographic that your product is typically associated with.  If you are in the business of selling home security systems, you won’t exactly make a mint by targeting your ad toward the spontaneous crowd.  Apart from that, the best course of action is to test the waters.  You can accomplish this by creating four different ad campaigns designed to target the four different personalities, with each campaign containing unique ads that hone in on a person’s various mindsets.  Once they’re created, let them run, collect the resultant data, and make a final determination as to what works best.

It may seem a bit labor intensive, but it’s worth it for two reasons.  First off, it will help you figure out exactly what your target audience should be.  Secondly, it will allow that target audience that you desire to instantly see what you want them to see in a way that they want it to be packaged.  And ultimately, that’s the whole point of putting together an ad campaign.  It was true when the alleged dinosaur that is print media ruled the scene, and it is arguably even truer in this day of online marketing.